Archive for May, 2010

As a big BRAVO fan of shows like Project Runway and Top Chef I was kinda thrilled to see they’ve expanded out into a art competition version of these two popular artsy fartsy programs. I’m not sure how something like this could even work but will be curious to see if it does. The Next Great Artist by Bravo will be airing Wednesday June 9th.

According to the Bravo TV Blog they describe their show as follows:

Golden Globe and Emmy Award winner Sarah Jessica Parker and her production company, Pretty Matches, will team with the Emmy-nominated Magical Elves (“Top Chef,” “Project Runway”) and Eli Holzman, to produce (The Next Great Artist) an hour long creative competition series among contemporary artists. “American Artist” (Note: This was it’s working title and has since been changed to “Work Of Art: The Next Great Artist”) will bring together twelve aspiring artists to compete for a gallery show, a cash prize and a sponsored national tour. In each episode, contestants will create unique works of art highlighting art’s role in everyday life, while they compete and create in a range of disciplines including sculpture, painting, photography and industrial design (to name a few). In working beyond their preferred mediums, artists will have to adapt quickly to changes in order to succeed. Completed works of art will be appraised by a panel of top art world figures including fellow artists, gallerists, collectors, curators and critics. The finalists’ work will be showcased in a nation-wide museum tour.

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Since the art fair season is upon us, I created one more squidoo lens about art fairs. This page highlights soime (as in the most important) factors I use to determine whether ot not to do a particular art fair venue. Biggest tip is of course to visit the event prior to signing up and talk to the artists there.

So here’ my latest art fair lens How To Choose The Right Art Fair.

And since the season IS upon us (my first event is less than a week away) here’s the other art fair lens I’ve created so far.

Art Fair Gear & Equipment Lenses
Art Fair Tents & Canopies
Artist Display Panels & Displays
Art Fair Equipment Essentials
Directors Chair Resource

General Art Fair Lenses
20 Things I’ve Learned From 20 Years Of Doing Art Fairs
An Art Fair Primer
All Good Things Come From Art Fairs

Note: I had spent much of yesterday trying to figuring why my blog was viewing all wonky like. Eventually I had to put my husband on the job since I couldn’t find my problem. Turns out there was just some random glitch in my last post. Good news, it’s fixed. Bad news no post yesterday.

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Creature Comforts – Giraffes

I thought I couldn’t put it off (posting a picture) any longer or ya’ll would stop believeing me when I say it’s coming. Well that I thought it might help me to see it all tiny like from many, many feet away. Not really happy with the green yet. I started with a light sage and didn’t like it, so then began darkening it up in the foreground. Still didn’t like it, so now am slowly lightening it up again.

I suppose the good news about all of this is I no longer have any issue with parting with them.

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So since Mike was gone this weekend I’ve been finishing up a couple of work in progress lenses as well as my giraffe painting. Giraffe photo coming soon. Just a bit more tweaking.

Here’s the latest

As a kid I always loved her books. Recently as an adult I’ve started collecting some of them. Picking them up at flea markets and rummage sales. What actually drew me back to these books as an adult was the art. Marguerite Henry teamed up with artist/illustrator Wesley Dennis for almost 20 years. Between them they wrote and illustrated most of the horse story classics of my youth. To find out more visit my latest lens The Classic Horse Books Of Marguerite Henry

And For Facebook Folk
One of the other latest things squidoo has done has opened up ranking/liking a lens to facebook users. In theory this should help draw a wider audience but it also means facebook fans can help lenrank their favorite writers which before only squidoo members could do. So if anybodies feeling kind feel free to like me. 🙂 (yeah, I’m not above asking.)

Image from inside cover of King Of The Wind by Marguerite henry.

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Fur In The . . . Paper?

It has arrived. A big box full of handmade paper goodness. I’m surprised Connie sent it on to me so quickly as last time she didn’t mail it out until after it had cured.

Maybe she thinks she can trust me this time to not automatically grab a sheet and try to create a masterpiece.

Hmm . . . more than likely she wanted it out of her house in time for her open house this weekend. She knows I am weak willed at times.

Do Zombies Ever Eat Paper?
I was anxious to see if I had made it right this time. The beauty of making handmade paper is that if you make it wrong, you tear it up, soak it and begin the process again. Never any waste.

Last time I forgot the crucial step of shaking the mold
as I’m pulling it out of the water. This helps settle the fibers together. Not doing this makes a weird pattern in the paper that kinda resembles brains. For me it really didn’t matter as oil pastel would completely cover this defect. Still . . . it’s nice to do the just right.

Turns out no brain pattern but it’s not really smooth either. Kinda lumpy. Not sure if it’s because the paper should have soaked a little more (since we recycled last years batch) and it was still a bit clumpy. Or if yet again it was operator error. (probably the later)

Since the paper I made last time didn’t have enough sizing, it sat unused for about a year. Now a forward thinking artist (like Connie) would have put the paper in a bag or something until it was needed. I put it on a shelf but didn’t really hermetically seal it (yes that’s what it would take to keep out the Budda fur.) What I did was put a piece of cardboard on top and thought “eh, good enough.”

Evidently not. There was quite a bit of Budda fur in my paper pulp and yes there are quite a few sheets where a Budda hair is distinctly visible.

Ah well . . . thank goodness that oil pastel have great coverage.

For More On Making Handmade Paper Visit This Lens
How To Make Handmade Paper

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As previously mentioned the Mn Horse Expo was a bit of a let down because the whole time we were there it rained. Now I have no issues with standing in a light drizzle when it comes to viewing exquisite horse flesh. None what so ever.

However apparently the owners of many of the expo horses do. They pretty much rushed them in and out so their beauty didn’t turn all wet and scraggly. (sigh)

That being said I still managed to take three whole rolls of film. (For those of you who don’t know me well, that was sarcasm. I usually take around 20) I had thought I had taken more because my camera case had quite a few rolls rolling about in the bottom. Turns out most were from a previous longhorn cattle safari I went on a month prior. Despite the tiny amount of photos taken I think I may well still get two paintings out of the visit. (Sa-weet!)

This is Cam. He’s a 11 year old Shire gelding recently imported from the Welsh/English border. He weighs over 2000 pounds and is 19.1 hands tall. He is multi talented as a wheel horse and cart horse.

Isn’t he lovely?

As to the buckskin above I’ve no idea but she did shout her email to me as she was heading back to the stables. She was very nice because when she seen my interest in her horse she circled back and gave a second crack at getting some pics before heading in.

If I copied the email correctly hopefully I’ll have more info to add soon. 🙂

I’ve been wanting to do a buckskin for quite awhile and with all that gorgeous tack . . . well this may be the one. After Spanish Gold I’m kinda liking the fancy tack thing.

Yup I’m Back
I’ll spill all on the paper making trip next post.

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So I am leaving for a couple of days for another paper making excursion with my dear friend Connie Herring. I thought I’d leave you a parting gift of a feel good photo of my Ollie when he was a baby.

How cute is he?

BTW Oliver was my first gallery cat. It was he who taught me that I wasn’t necessarily a dyed in the wool “dog person.” I found him as an orphan in a ditch on one of my daily walks in late October. He was very young (he could easily fit in my hand – the mousy toy is about 1″ long) half froze and starved, his momma had left him. AT that time our barn cats were onle a few step away from feral so instinct told them to abandon kittens born so late in the season.

Anyway the day i found him, I had a city meeting (our version of chamber of commerce) and since he was so weak and chilled I just tucked him in my jacket and carried him around on my shoulder (one of the few times being large chested is an asset.) He slept the entire meeting until it was over, then he woke up gave a tiny mew. Immediately everyone had to see him and he got passed around and received all sort of love and affections.

It took me about a week to decide to make him my gallery cat. I had never had an indoor cat so this was a big step for me. He was my gallery cat for almost 4 years before he passed away quite unexpectedly just before Christmas. At the time I had barely begun blogging and used several posts to explore my loss of him. I keep this photo (and many others) hanging in the gallery as I still miss him though it’s been a couple of years already.

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After having been to the MN Horse Expo recently I now have a small mountain of photo requiring organization. It got me to thinking about a couple of lenses that I created regarding collecting and organizing your reference photos. The previous post dealt with why you should take your own reference photos. And this post highlights a few of the ways that i go about collecting reference photos.

1. Take LOTS of Pictures
Yeah okay that seems pretty self explanatory but seriously most of the time I have no idea what will be og use to me possibly years in the future. I try not to over think my photos and keep them spontaneous. Again I’m not a photographer I’m a painter. I don’t need to set up the shot in order to get a painting out of it. sometimes a painting doesn’t emerge form a photo collection until years later. My tastes change and my medium and styles change and when if I edit too many photos out as not usable, I may be throwing away a great future painting.

2. When Collecting Reference Images Take Photos From Every Angle (and i do mean every angle) Keep taking photos until you can’t think up with a new way to view this object.

3.Try New Angles
Whenever I photograph a subject I try to go all the way around them. Also, often I get down on my knees to try new angles. Yup, even in public places. I usually don’t mind humiliation when on a quest for new images to paint.

4. But Be Sure To Avoid Photographic Distortion (you know bulgy eyes, tiny little body) The best way to avoid distortion is to not be too close to your object of interest.

5.Take Detail shots The other thing I do when collecting painting reference photos is I take loads of detail shots. Close up or macro images of eyes, ears noses anything that I deem significant at the time. While these will probably never be the whole completed painting they provide information that might be lost of the wider shots.

6. Be aware Of Your Lighting. When taking photos outdoors I have found that the best light occurs in the mornings and evenings.

Both mornings and evenings the light is warmer in color and often with a yellow cast. Also the side lighting allows for greater drama with lights and shadows.

For more information on collecting your own reference photographs and how to organzie them please visit these lenses.

How To Build Your Own Reference Library
Organizing Your Photo Reference Library

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I had recently run up to the MN Horse Expo and as is my way took a few hundred photos for painting reference. This got me to thinking a bit about why it is so important to collect my own reference photos in light of the fact that there are plenty of sights allowing you to use their images (though usually for a price.)

So in case your asking yourself why should you go to all this trouble, well here’s 4 good reasons why.
I. Connects you with your work
2. Avoids Legal Troubles
3. Professionalism
4.There’s nothing that beats that “being there” experience

Collecting your own reference photos will definitely aid in your ability to connect with your art. And if you connect with it chances are, collectors will also.

But if you’re still not convinced collecting your own images is worth the hassle, well then you need to familiarize yourself with the terms for using the work of others for your reference materials.It is good to be able to understand the difference between royalty free and copyright free. According to Wikipedia

Royalty Free is:
Royalty-free is a term employed in negotiating the right to use creative content, such as photographs, video, or music. The term royalty-free means that once the content is licensed under a set of guidelines, the licensee is normally free to use it in perpetuity without paying additional royalty charges.

While Copyright is
Copyright is the set of exclusive rights granted to the author or creator of an original work, including the right to copy, distribute and adapt the work. These rights can be licensed, transferred and/or assigned.

So Copyright Free is:
Copyright-free is a conventional expression extensively used in Japan by authors whose works can be used freely regardless of copyright. It is distinguished from public domain.

And Finally Public Domain
Works are in the public domain if they are not covered by intellectual property rights at all, if the intellectual property rights have expired,[1] and/or if the intellectual property rights are forfeited or unclaimed.

The defining characteristic of copyright infringement is if the average viewer when looking at the two works see a similarity. The copying need not be exact.

Seriously, isn’t it just easier to go out and get your own?

For more information on collecting your own reference photographs and how to organize them please visit these lenses.

How To Build Your Own Reference Library
Organizing Your Photo Reference Library

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Do You Use Your Artistic Lisense?

Front Of License

I have been a greeter on Squidoo now for a little while. Which means I look at all the newly published pages (in my selected areas of interest) and offer encouragement and positive feedback where it’s warranted. A couple of days back I ran across this lens for Poetic License created by Squidoo user Greekgeek which I thought was too funny and I told her she needed to make one for Artistic License . . . and she did.

This is a free template you can download and create your own with your picture or that of an artsy friend. As soon as I get a few minutes I’m going play with this idea. Very very clever. And how wonderful for her to share.

Just visit this lens: Make an “Artistic License” — Free Photoshop Template! This is where the images are from as well.

Back Of License

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