Tag Archives: creativity

Rodin’s Answer to Rejection.

13 Sep
rodin angels

The Benedictions, executed 1894
Musee Rodin cast number unknown, 1955 bronze
Marked: “A. Rodin”, “Georges Rudier Fondeur Paris”
35 1/2x24x19” Lent by the Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Foundation

Attending Syracuse University’s Lunchtime Lecture afforded me the opportunity to hear Professor Romita Ray’s wealth of information and insight into the current show, Rodin: The Human Experience.

This free event is open to the public and gives visitors a chance to familiarize themselves with Rodin and all of the SU Galleries in the Shaffer Art Building on campus.

The show has 28 bronze sculptures all by the French sculptor, Auguste Rodin (1840-1917).  Rodin is considered the father of modern European sculpture and he studied under Antoine Louis-Barye.

Rodin came from a working class family, his father a police inspector and his mother a seamstress.  After he was rejected from Ecole des Beaux-Arts (art school), he worked for sculptor Albert-Ernest Carrier-Belleuse for six years.  After having his sculpture rejected from the Salon several times, he was determined to continue working in his own style.  He was inspired by Michelangelo’s work during his travels to Italy in 1876.  Not long after that his work began receiving positive attention and international fame.

Professor Ray gave insight into the political events that were happening during the time Rodin was creating various sculptures. It was interesting how critics of the era responded.  She took time to describe the actual process of creating a bronze sculpture, which I found very helpful.  She told us how Rodin described sculpting as simply “making holes and bumps”, gave a hand-out full of detail and explained how the Rodin sculptures “Vibrate” power without many details.  It is fascinating to see how this artist was able to give the feeling of flesh and fabric using a metal.  Some of Rodin’s sculptures feature oversized feet, hands or other body parts, which Professor Ray stated “Art is about more than beauty, it’s also about exaggeration.”  I saw the exaggeration as Rodin’s expression of power or strength.

Professor Ray explained that the emotional pieces that were rejected were also the same pieces that later were considered to be masterpieces.  Rodin’s art is considered a link between traditional and modern sculpture and is rich with feeling.

I appreciate artist stories and particularly enjoy hearing the successes – how one persevered, overcame and found success.  What can I take away from this?  Sometimes it’s important to ignore the critics (even if they are only in your own head) and push yourself to create the best work you possibly can.

Syracuse University has many free events, so be sure to check out their art and newsletter here: http://suart.syr.edu/  ♦

Advertisements

Chromatic Interaction

29 Aug

There are many methods for organizing colors in the world of art and science.  Having a visual model can help an artist see the relationships colors have with each other. A color wheel, developed by Albert Munsell in 1905, assigned a numbering system to colors and became a useful and common tool artists and designers could use for planning color ideas.  Johannes Itten also developed a three-dimensional model, integrating the color wheel into a globe.

Using a sketchbook to study colors can help an artist examine the relationships between warmer and cooler colors as well as between analogous and complementary colors.  As a watercolorist, I can gain an understanding of how the various watercolors work together, but may find changes as I experiment with different brands.

Testing chromatic interaction doesn’t have to be boring at all – try this exercise for fun:

  1. Draw several free-hand circles in various sizes.  Allow them to overlap.  This first step is optional, since you could just create your circles with the brush.
  2. Start with the largest circle, painting one color into the circle.
  3. Clean the brush with water before adding a second color. Paint the new color into the adjoining circle on the first circle.  Watch the colors bleed, paying attention to how the colors are interacting.
  4. Continue painting circles with different colors.
  5. This is only one way to paint the circles. You could also wait for each circle to dry before painting the next, so there would be no “bleeding” of colors.

Have fun!

To read more about color theory, click here: https://watercolorpainting.com/color/

https://uxplanet.org/algorithm-for-automatic-harmonious-color-selection-for-the-image-fc26dde69ca1

The Munsell Color System: https://web.archive.org/web/20030813092028/http://www.adobe.com/support/techguides/color/colormodels/munsell.html

Itten Color: https://www.bauhaus100.de/en/past/teaching/classes/preliminary-course-by-johannes-itten/index.html

An art & design duo from Milan have chromatic interaction art:  https://www.carnovsky.com/RGB.htm

Exercises For Brush Control

28 Jun
chinese brush practice

Chinese Brush Painting made easier using a giant serving tray as a mixing palette.

Chinese Brush Painting was one of many items on my Art “To-Do” list.  I had heard from others that it would be helpful in learning control of the brush.  I’ve been painting for a long time so I knew some techniques but I was happy to find that daily Chinese Brush painting practice has helped my painting.

Masters of Chinese Brush Painting study the art for many years and create some of the most beautiful paintings and calligraphy.  I was more interested in building the brush work into my daily habits.

Some of the exercises include painting bands of color, laying varying colors side by side (steady hand practice), and painting thick and thin lines using the tip and base of the brush (practicing pressure).  Painting fast lines with a wrist flick and cutting shapes are more exercises.  These are only some of the many exercises to try.

If you haven’t tried Chinese Brush Painting and you want to strengthen your brush control, give it a try.  There are many inexpensive books to help guide you in the process.  You can even use YouTube to get an idea of how to paint this way.

Here are some online resources: http://education.asianart.org/explore-resources/background-information/introduction-chinese-brushpainting-techniques

http://asia-art.net/chinese_brush.html

https://www.wikihow.com/Start-Chinese-Brush-Painting

https://youtu.be/qF3EbR8y8go

 

 

Transforming Reality

23 Mar
Confetti Mountain

“Confetti Mountain” Watercolor by Katie Turner

In allowing greater creativity to unfold in my paintings, I’ve worked hard to eliminate and simplify.  Without losing too many of my white areas, I built an abstract foundation with delicate calligraphic accents to evoke an illusion of reality.  Most of the time I like to use larger brushes because they force me to stay loose.  The reality of the scene in front of me may include many excellent details but the simplification and editing can help me to transform it into more of a feeling.  Transforming reality is my key to freedom.  ~ Katie

Munch Created His Own Style

6 Mar
the-scream

The Scream, 1893 by Edvard Munch

Edvard Munch (1863-1944), the Norwegian artist whose art covered themes of love, death, isolation and pain had developed his own style.

Although he had health issues, particularly in his younger years, he painted almost every day.  His last thirty years he spent mostly in isolation, producing a phenomenal amount of work (around 1,100 paintings).

His paintings were constantly changing and he often would repeat paintings, changing subtle things each time.  Munch is considered a unique artist due to his fluidity, meaning his style was changing from day to day and period to period.

Not all of his paintings were masterpieces and some of his most famously renowned paintings had critics who loved them and also critics who hated them.

Although he was accused of copying the styles of Cezanne, Van Gogh and Renoir he denied it saying that yes, some of his techniques may be similar but his painting was unique and with these other artists, he was only related in time.

Munch was both criticized and praised for his innovative “turpentine paintings” which allowed the canvas to be visible.  He spent years developing his “turpentine paintings” techniques.  Although he was aware of the influence of his contemporaries, Munch always remained faithful to his own style.

To view some of his paintings click here: http://munchmuseet.no/en/munch

Cadmium-Free Paint

18 Dec

Today I received a sample of paint from Liquitex.  They have a new Cadmium-Free acrylic paint out and are encouraging artists to test their paint and see if you can really tell the difference between the Cadmium-Free and the regular paint.  Some artists say that the Cadmium paints are more vibrant with better opacity but there is a health risk with Cadmium.  Here are my test samples below.   I don’t know which tube, A or B has the cadmium but will have to visit liquitex.com to learn the results of their artist challenge.  I really couldn’t tell the difference.   They both seem to function the same with the same coverage.   If you would like read more about it, go to https://www.liquitex.com/cadmium-free-challenge/

 

liquitex tubes

a testb test

Web-Brutalism: Rebel Web Design

4 Dec

Design has always been an interest of mine, so when I read about web-brutalism design in my favorite graphics magazine, I knew I had to find out what it was.

Web-brutalists are digital designers that create raw, irreverent, ugly websites.  They are more concerned with simplicity and truth than comfort and frivolity.  The younger generation is designing this way as a reaction to the busy, lavish, opulent websites that are out there now.   Some designers claim the old design rules are causing the death of creativity and that Web-brutalism with its noncompliance encourages creativity and diversity.  Of course a good designer will know which rules to break and which to keep.

In the past two decades, we have moved from an information age to an innovation age.  Both need to work synchronously as technology becomes increasingly mobile.  Technology needs to be wearable, fashionable and fit seamlessly into our lives.  Standardization is a major factor for everyone.  New ideas need to coordinate with existing services to work.  Today we see that with some design, for example, a charging cable can be used by several electronic devices.  On the web you will see templates as another example, with users on WordPress blogs, etsy shops and eBay sellers using standardized designs.  Web-Brutalists are designing as a response to these templates and standardizations by using original designs that break out of the mold.  These brutalist websites tend to be more flat, text-heavy and simple sites (see examples below).

Pascal Deville, a Creative Director from Zurich wrote about the web-brutalism movement in 2014.    Deville had noticed some designers were using odd-looking work and wrote about it.  He started a website where designers could submit their websites.  With this movement growing, webbrutalism.com is receiving over 100 submissions a day from many different countries and industries.  This design style is growing in popularity today and is a new authentic voice reaching target audiences.

Check out some of the unique websites:

www.webbrutalism.com

www.awwwards.com/brutalism-brutalist-websites.html

This slideshow requires JavaScript.