WHATWHYWHENHOW: Artwork Analysis 13


Survive, mixed media & a bird feather on mat board, 2004.

Survive.
Mixed media & a bird feather on mat board, 2004.

“Survive”

What: There is quite a bit going on in this piece, so much so that I did not know how to start this post off! I sat for a while just looking at the screen & at the random things in the room and, I kid you not, I said: “Aaaaaahhhhhh!” Writer’s block is as bad as artist’s block. I would have screamed louder, but I have neighbors & they’d think I am nuts. Then again…………….they know I am an artist, so they would probably think I was being normal.  Anyway, this drawing features, as you can see, a grouping of hands with some religious & cultural objects and also some other elements. And a lot of lines and a lot of yellow!

What II: This work, as I said, is a religious piece (though, due to its subject, it is also a social piece). By now, many who know me personally and those who frequent my blog know that I am Christian. Naturally I am going to create art centered around that because it’s a part of me. To explain it quickly, this work is about the survival and endurance of three particular groups of people: Africans and those descended from them, indigenous (in this case, Native Americans) and Jewish (though being Jewish is not a race, but is the culture of a religion). I, myself, have descent from a few groups, including African and Native American, so that made this work even more personal. Every race has and most cultures have struggled one way or another through history, but these three groups have more than others. Africans & their descendants dealt with major slavery for many centuries (which includes being forcibly displaced from their original home), and discrimination, Native Americans dealt with some slavery, being forcibly displaced from from their homes and discrimination and Jewish people dealt with major slavery in ancient days, the Holocaust and discrimination. Since people are not perfect and choose to practice evils, hatred and stereotypes still exist (but in lesser degrees, thank God), but there were days when such hate toward others was WORSE. And, so, this artwork conveys God’s grace, mercy and healing on three peoples. Evil slavery no longer exists among these people, the selfish practice of displacement is no longer practiced, the nightmare of the Holocaust is over, the ignorance of discrimination has lessened greatly. Mankind is so vulnerable and exposed to the dangers of fellow mankind, that we need Higher Help. This help comes from God (Yahweh: LORD). The fingers above are larger than the hands below and these fingers are lighter in color (having a subtle glow) than the hands below, as well. These fingers represent divine help and guidance from God. God is present in Spirit and present in all of His creations. The hands below, from your left to your right: 1) the Jewish (represented with the Star of David containing God’s shining name in Hebrew: YHWH-they spelled it without vowels to prevent being able to pronounce His Name since God’s Name is Holy), 2) the Native American (represented with turquoise stone and an actual feather I employed) and 3) Africans and those with African heritage (represented by the familiar Kente cloth in the form of a sheath). God has brought all of these peoples through their struggles, He destroyed evil practices that threatened them and they SURVIVE. God gracefully and mercifully intercedes for mankind, but when you are in spirit with God & Christ (having accepted Them), He intercedes even more with those of FAITH. That being said, these groups contained many people who, before and during their now annihilated struggles, had come to accept God as Father & Jesus as Savior (Jesus is more than a great prophet), but for those who had not yet accepted God & Jesus, I can only hope that many made the choice to do so as they saw the power of God at work in destroying bondages & hindrances that humankind creates. Many still come into personal acceptance of God & Jesus into their lives everyday. I know people have to make their own choice to accept God & Jesus into their life & spirit, but since I am Christian, I naturally will mention the Father and the Savior.

What III: The colored rays are light rendered in an abstract way: as a series of lines. The semi-circular lines at top represent earth. The yellow background just seemed like the right color to help every other color and object stand out. They vibrant yellow also reflects the Glory of the Divine. The various-colored purple circles in the background (there are three) represent the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. That was a LOT of background, huh? But that is the gist of this piece! Struggle becoming survival and endurance! Amen…

Why: Why did I draw this? Well, I will answer in parts.

1) I wanted to have a reason to draw on some more mat board that I had on hand. Mat board is described here: “A mat board, sometimes referred to as a mat, is a cardboard-like material, which sits between a frame and your photograph or artwork to give it a more finished look. Mat boards range in a variety of colors and cores (…mat board core is the center material of the mat board. Mat board cores come in a variety of thicknesses…), depending on your needs.” – definition from wholesalematboards.com. You can read more about mat boards at their site HERE. I discovered drawing on textured (not all mat board is textured) mat board in 2003 some time after graduating from university. I think my first drawing on mat board was this piece titled “when It’s Hidden”: CLICK HERE. It is partially a self-portrait (the subject at front being me). I will post an art analysis on this piece one day. I like drawing on paper a lot, but drawing on textured mat board gives artwork an interesting visual result thanks to the little pits all over the surface of the board. The texture is even more defined & visible when using dark, rich material on it like charcoal. Drawings take on more textural character. 

2) Another reason that I created this piece was so that I could add to my portfolio of work. All artists should have an ever-expanding portfolio of work for personal and commercial reasons. Sometimes we do not feel like creating or do not have the motivation (artists aren’t always on a creative high as some people may think), but we must renew our creative fire and use it to go berserk producing, again! 3) I also drew this piece so that I could test my own skills and also to make sure I do not lose my ability to render those skills and do not lose my ability to come up with new subjects (I like to try interesting subjects rendered in interesting ways…I get bored kinda easily). Artists must always challenge themselves and must always progress in skills and ideas. 4) Yet another reason I created this work was to produce a work with a specifically religious subject.

When: I created this in 2004. A year or close to a year after I graduated from university (I like to say it like many Europeans say it: “university”). Americans usually say “college”, which is just as well, but my school has “university” in the title (Claflin University), so I think it more correct to say that word. But I digress!! I know!!

How: This part will be somewhat shorter than the above paragraphs! I utilized mat board, oil paint, colored pencil, black and white (for tints) charcoal pencil, black aerosol/spray paint and a feather. Yes, a REAL feather! After I finished plucking the bird, I prepared it and roasted it. It was one fine bird.  ………… Just kidding. I did not eat the bird. I do not even know what bird this feather came from! I just saw the feather laying on the ground in my yard. I have a thing with collecting feathers, cleaning them (because the bird it detached from may have been sick) and keeping them just to look at them (and since I am an artist & so fall into some artist habits, I actually decorated my hair with real feathers when I was at university, like you would put a rose in your hair…but I have since stopped doing that far-out kind of thing!). I think feathers are beautiful & their fine, orderly detailing (again, God at work) is fascinating. I used this particular feather in this artwork. Art can employ all types of objects! I have used wire, thread and even pencil shavings in other works.  Art is FAR from boring, that is for sure! I also utilized my own hand in this work. My left hand I used to model ALL four hands (this is including the fingers above). I had to twist my wrist around a lot (especially for the hand at the right) and hold my hand in place in front of my face to render the three different poses, but yes, all three are my hand. I just visually altered the size of the one at the left to appear like a man’s hand (notice it is larger than the other two). As you can see, everything from the hands, to the turquoise stone (modeled after how they can really appear), to the Kente cloth flowing over the sinews of the hand…I incorporate a lot of detail. In my artwork, I am heavily influenced by realism, naturalism and the Renaissance masters. I love detail and modeling. My Mom says I have “eyes like a microscope”! I gotta humbly thank the LORD for that. Anyhow, back to the major wrist-flexing to accomplish the hand poses…I had a slightly sore wrist after the work was complete (this work took me less than a month to complete)! It was like artist’s carpal tunnel, but it was worth it!

Survive. Detail.

Survive.
Detail.

Well, that wraps up this edition of WhatWhyWhenHow. Thank God for art and thank God for survival!!

I hope that you enjoyed this post and feel free to comment! Also feel free to return to my blog and read this, older & future posts! Thanks!

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WHATWHYWHENHOW: Artwork Analysis 11


3 Paths. Oil on canvas. 2010.

3 Paths. Oil on canvas. 2010.

3 Paths II. Oil on canvas. 2012.

3 Paths II. Oil on canvas. 2012.

3 Paths III. Oil on canvas. 2012.

3 Paths III. Oil on canvas. 2012.

Another in a series of analyses on my art. This one’s late! I’ve done separate posts before on  two of the pieces individually (just click or search the tags ‘oil paint’ or ‘paintings’ and you will see all those posts). Most of the posts have just been to do with my progress, but not on all three together as completed works.

Feel free to comment with questions you may still have.

3 Paths, 3 Paths II and 3 Paths III

WHAT:  These works are oil on canvas pieces and are inspired by the fantastically bold art of Qin Feng. There are a couple links to his work below. They are conceptual (art whose ideas are more important than the traditional aesthetic & material concerns). They are non-objectional abstract (more on that in the next paragraph). All three pieces together form a triptych. Nah, I didn’t make that word up…it’s a real word! Triptych:  (pron.: /ˈtrɪptɪk/TRIP-tik; (from the Greek adjective τρίπτυχοs (“three-fold”), from tri-= “three” + ptysso= “to fold”) is a work of art (usually a panel painting) which is divided into three sections, or three carved panels which are hinged together and can be folded shut or displayed open. It is therefore a type of polyptych, the term for all multi-panel works. The middle panel is typically the largest and it is flanked by two smaller related works, although there are triptychs of equal-sized panels. The form can also be used for pendant jewelry. – wikipedia

WHY: I wanted to step away from realism and naturalism for a while (realism and naturalism are two different styles of art, but with a similar focus-to capture what subjects really look like) and give a serious stab at what I before only dabbled with from time to time: complete abstract. Many people know that abstract is a very altered rendering of an object and abstract art can also be non-objective (just shapes, lines, form or shape othat are not of any object-people, things, places, etc.; my three pieces are examples of being non-objective and abstract). I highly admire Renaissance art as well. I wanted to try something less detailed and liberating as far as the process; something also, to be honest, that I could create quickly! My detailed artworks are like making a 10-course meal. And although the creation process involved much thought, these 3 paintings were like making a sandwich. So, a BIG difference as far as time. When I saw works by Qin Feng, all gorgeous and pow pow pow in your face, it got my mind going! POW! #ObnoxiousAlert

WHEN: I did these over a span of two years (after starting and stopping). The 1st one was done in 201o. II and III were done in 2012.

HOW: I will explain this pretty quickly so as to get to the point about 3 paintings. First, the ground is prepared. For each work, I wanted the ground colors to be visually appealing, but without being usual colors. The first has a deep red brick color, the 2nd has a loud yellow and the 3rd was to be a dark (with black) greenish color, but it appears mainly black.  The next step was to paint the wide strokes across each work. Expansively free lines was what I was going for. An Asian appearance (beauty of line, varied brush widths and directions and coloring to complement the each ground) was the aim as well. As far as the coloring of the strokes, I got stuck on the 2nd one. I didn’t know what color to use against the yellow ground. Then my roommate suggested that I create the pieces to all include the same colors so that they’d go together more. Great idea! It cut the indecisiveness. See? Besides wondering ‘what the heck is that?’ when they are looking at their artist roommate’s pieces, they can also give advice! My first piece was a BREEZE to do-inspiration was high. # II was indecisive-had to figure out the color scheme. # III was like the anti-art monsters just swallowed my brain and sucked out all of my creative thoughts! I even cursed that painting out…LITERALLY (you can read about it in this post: “FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING!: i cursed out my painting…badly” from October 2012). I changed it 50,000 times (well, almost), but it got done. Things worked out, though! I finished them all and, in fact, while I was painting the 3rd (hell-ish, lol) piece, someone wanted to buy all three paintings! Thank God! You can read about that, too (“UPDATE: wrapped up and sent off with a tear…i miss my paintings” from November 2012). The 3rd piece was mailed separately because one area would NOT dry. I think if a tornado blew over it, it wouldn’t’ve dried! I had to actually rub off some of the oil paint layers. It dried quickly after that. I coulda beat myself with a jumbo sable paintbrush for not getting that earlier. Meh…

I am glad that I could finally post this article. Talk about STALLIN’. But I did it and I hope you enjoyed reading and learning about these works! // SHAMELESS PLUG TIME!!: If you are interested in any works as far as questions and as far as purchases, email me: calonie.ct@gmail.com. Thanks!

View more art at: http://paintingsilove.com/artist/caloniejohnson THANKS! // UPDATE: I just completed a new piece, today. Back on my drawing game after taking a long break due to work, involvements and just plain hiatus. I will post it, soon. I want to next create more religious-based artworks (do not have enough of those and they’re important), Assassin’s Creed fan art (but something gritty and naturalistic…no corny stuff) and fairy tale-based art (but not sappy). I also want to work on a book of my art. A long thought of project that is overdue!

Qin Feng sites:

Official artist site- Click Here

Qin Feng on Artnet- Click Here

UPDATE: wrapped up and sent off with a tear…i miss my paintings


I would’ve wept and let tears drop (like in the movies) on this mailer, but I was in the post office. I would have looked weird. So I made a sad face over it, instead.

Weeeeeeeeeep!!!! I did it. It had to be done. *sniff*

I mailed two paintings to a buyer (or that other fancy word people who sell their wares like to use: patron) on November 2nd. These two paintings are featured in these posts on this blog: “WHATWHYWHENHOW: Artwork Analysis 5″ and “HMMMM…WHAT WILL THIS BE? 2:  after a faulty start, i have figured it out”. As can be expected from an artist (because if you know the true artist personality, we tend to get attached), I miss them very much, but artists have to make that money, too, and so we have to teach ourselves to let go and keep creating. It is a hard lesson everytime. Well, almost everytime because sometimes we produce stuff that just plain sucks or pissed us off somehow. In cases like that, it is EASY to let a piece of art go because we DO NOT like it.

Below are two photos I shot of the artworks a few hours before I went to the post office:

3 Paths. Oil on canvas board. 2010.

3 Paths II. Oil on canvas board. 2012.

Before sending the paintings off, I did the following: took final photos (I have soooo many photos from other shoots, too) and final detail photos, wrote a letter (which incl. care advice and advice on framing and hanging the works) and I went to a copy place to make a few prints from the paintings. When selling original art always make sure to take photos & make prints of your work (for yourself, portfolio and marketing needs). Never sell an original piece without making sure to have visual evidence to keep.

So now my precious pieces are in the abode of another. *sigh* I hope that they will take great care of them, realizing that when you buy a piece of art you are literally buying a piece of that artist along with it. Art really is more than money. It’s soul & thoughts. But I already decided I am going to keep with this Qin Feng-inspired art and produce more. Produce more so that I will feel better again (!), so that I can see if I can push the envelope and produce even BETTER versions and because I just really love this style of abstract art. It’s like Mannerism in abstract form! Very expressive!

I have a third piece within this series (which makes this series a triptych-a series of 3 works that, well, go together…..a diptych would be 2 works that go together…..I wonder what a 7 series is; a septtych??). But there is one area on ‘3 Paths III’ that literally refuses to dry! And I did not even utilize medium (like linseed oil, for ex.) which prolongs drying time. So I am annoyed and mind-boggled. I wanted to mail them altogether, but I will have to mail this one later, after I figure out what to do with it….and after I quit glaring at it. I also talked more about this 3rd one in this post that you can find on my blog: “FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING: i cursed out my painting…badly”. Serious. Read it.

Well, gonna sign off on this post, but I am going to do an analysis on the hows and whys of this series (all 3) in another one of my art analyses that I like to write.

I am going to go and take a walk because DAYTIME seems to be a cue card for NOISE for some people. My neighbors on one side are loud (mega bowling match goin’ on, apparently). And my neighbors on BOTH sides are SUPER jerks with a breakdancing (apparently) dog on one side and s***load of puppies on the other side. These dogs are straight buggin’! Connected walls……..the scourge of apartment living.

Have an awesome day and night, readers (I KNOW you will if you do not have dog-owning, bowling neighbors)!

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FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING!: i cursed out my painting…badly


AND THE NIGHTMARE CONTINUES…

I sized the image above to be quite large because that would represent just how INFURIATING this piece is for me!

Let’s start from the beginning: If you read my posts (WhatWhenWhyHow: Artwork Analysis 5, WhatWhenWhyHow: Artwork Analysis 5 (a second look), Hmmmm: i wonder what this will be, Hmmmm: i wonder what this will be 2), you will see that I am working on a 3-part series of paintings with a very swoopy abstract feel inspired by a superb Chinese artist named Qin Feng. I have not posted much on my 2nd painting as I’m waiting to finish the series before doing a final post on all three. But you can see a peek of it in the image above (it is the yellow canvas with the red against it!). The series, as I have mentioned, already has a buyer and when I complete the 3rd painting, I will receive the other half of my payment. I will direly miss this series. It is so special to me and it really is very emotionally close to me. But getting paid helps an artist alot.

But the fact that a patron is waiting on the series to be completed makes my aggravation all the more worse! Because along with my need to maintain and also improve my skills and artistic reputation, I don’t want the buyer to wait FOREVER!

The 3rd painting I am referring to is the one above. Yep, the black oil-painted one up there. At first I started it with a specific idea that the other two share (the secret is in the style of the strokes). The 1st painting, ‘3 Paths’, I was very enthusiastic and my mind wide awake with inspiration. the 2nd one, ‘3 Paths II’; that yellow/red one in the image, I was pressed for ideas, but as I worked it out it came so easily! The 3rd one, which will be ‘3 Paths III’, is so humongously frustrating! It is as if with each painting my idea capacity has gotten lower and lower until I reached the soulless depths of Artist Hell!!!! Artist Hell is a place where you are punished by having ideas stripped from your brain and to, for ETERNITY, chase those ideas as they forever and perpetually escape your grasp. Forever and ever and ever!! AAAAARRRRGGGHHHH!! That right there was not just comic sound I typed, that was actually me in front of that canvas agonizing like a rabid, inspiration-drained artist.

In fact that canvas in the photo above is the FIRST canvas. At 1st I was pressed for what color should be against the black background. I tried green. Meh. Tried brown. Double meh. A friend of mine suggested I combine the black from my 1st painting & the yellow from the 2nd; thereby making them even more of a unite. Artists have a hard time, sometimes, drawing from others, but we do do it (every now and again I accept ideas from my mom, whom also creates art and is the one whom got me into art to begin with) and that black, yellow thing was a great idea!! Thanks Maurice! As I re-did the design, in yellow horribly thought out ways, atop the black I would paint over the yellow in black until the re-paintings were so many that surface became very textured with 2 layers worth of design underneath. The other two paintings have smooth grounds. This one was starting to resemble a Japanese rock garden with the raking ridges (which would not be bad if that was part of my idea)… Unlike the 1st 2 paintings, which have a continuity that relate to each other, this one was NOT relating in style or design.

Something was beginning to brew inside of me:

Yeah. I was getting as pissed off as fire looks.

So I re-started on a new canvas. Painted it black and went at it with yellow, again…still no success. Still dissatisfied. UGH. I mean, this was a great example of art and abstract art both NOT being as easy as some people irresponsibly think. Being an artist takes ALOT of mental and visual problem-solving, guys! So I thought I just needed to step away and refresh my mind. Re-focus and re-think. Even the patron suggested I take a break and re-focus. So I did unwind a bit and when I returned to it, I looked to trees as inspiration since how the strokes interconnect in the paintings is similar to how tree branches lay over and under each other. But that did not help, either because even though trees branches are a great design muse, it didn’t work with the placement I was going for. So as I got to the point below…

No. No. NOOOOOOOoooooooo!!!!!! And it starts…

…I think my mind and hanging-on-a-string patience just, like, left me and drifted off somewhere because I started (and this is where the title of the post comes in) to curse my painting out!! I’ve been mad at my artwork before (which is really being mad at myself), but never like this! Like each time I worked on it trying to get a decent image to magically morph, I went into another tirade. I was mad because I wanted to get it done. I was mad because it was really testing my artistic prowess (which involves your pride, there, yep). I was mad because it looked so poopy. Yep. Poopy. So I cursed at it like it was a human being; like it was the ULTIMATE nightmare jerk, and slang at it with my paintbrush trying to force a result. Every single person (incl. the holier than thou ones) have that breaking point a few times in life! I peppered my canvas with the profanity I wanted to throw at jerks I really DO know! Nevermind thinking that artists ALWAYS serenely and peacefuly come to a result as we sip wine, our minds doing a ballet with the spirits of daVinci & Escher pushing us along all while listening to Bonobo (well, that last part is true for me, anyway…I like Bonobo). Sometimes you gotta FORCE that mofo!! When you get angry at a piece of work, you MAKE it do what you need it to. Sure, I felt bad that I was being a verbal psychopath and, since I love my artworks personally, I felt bad for treating my painting so wretchedly; I felt pretty bad about all that potty/sailor/Katt Williams mouth (actually the painting probably wants to tell me: “You are a megatron jerk. It’s YOU messing up, not me!! YOU are the one painting ME. Duh. Get it together. Like, wow.”).

Then something happened and I did start getting it together…

EUREKA!! Time to dance an ole timey jig!!

I apologize, painting. I am a megatron jerk. I still have some kinks to work out and have to paint one more layer so that the yellow will not be transparent, but it is looking like it is saying something to me, now! Keep talking because I wanna finish on a high note! In a way the anger experienced was good. It was me albeit furiously, admitting I knew I had improvements to make…because a cocky artist is a stupid artist). All in all, this was definitely one of those visual problem-solving projects and I am glad I came to a result. WOW.

This post was longer than I planned on it being, but that is okay. If you took time to read the entire post, that is even better…and thank you! When I complete the series, I’ll post a final analysis on it and I hope you will read that one as well!

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WHATWHYWHENHOW: Artwork Analysis 5 (a second look)


  • NOTE: When I was going through my posts, I saw that I had already done an art analysis on this piece!! Go see “Artwork Analyses 5”...that one! Being somewhat of a perfectionist, I became somewhat perturbed and annoyed. Silently so. My roommate even noticed a change in my temperament from cheerful to meh. But then I got over it because stuff like blogging mistakes are not the end of the world or the worst thing in the world. I next figured out what to do & have decided to make this a two-part study (hence me titling this one ‘a second look’. I could have kept it as “Artwork Analyses 10”, but I want #10 to be a completely new work. I have a thing for order, sue me! So , anyway, this is basically the SAME work with a fresh perspective. End of note!

 

Another in a series of analyses on my art. This one’s an abstract one! I am mainly a realism and naturalism artist, but abstract art is growing on me. In my head, Picasso and Mondrian are becoming friends with daVinci and Ingres (two of my big BIG art idols)! Man, imagine if they were really friends? Those would be some awesome chill sessions.

Feel free to comment with questions you may still have.

3 Paths, Oil paint on canvas, 2010.

3 Paths

What:  This is an example of my accumulating interest in abstract art. There are many ways to approach abstract art. It can be blocks. It can be splatters (technically called action art), it can be minimalist strokes… Abstract art is freeing and I guess you could say the liberal side of art. Yet it still adheres to the elements and principles used in every other visual art style. What else this is is also my mind going off on a whimsical tangent; creating while thinking, but not thinking too hard…like The Kardashians. Whoa. Let me take that back. I thought more than that while painting this. I don’t let my brain slip that much! Theirs is a whole other level of cerebral decay…

The other What is within the title itself. 3 Paths. It has to do with the configuration of the strokes. It is not the letter A, by the way!!

Why: I created this painting because I am becoming more appreciative of the simple and yet, complex, beauty and pleasant oddity of abstract art. I wanted to break away from being so detailed and careful with my technique and skills. There are, as I said, so many ways to approach an abstract idea. It is very exciting to work out and watch it form. It can be very unnerving, too, because there are less restrictions it can be easy to slip up and not get the result you want…because despite how free-ing or simplistic (at times) it is, even abstract art is being worked out to result in an appearance pleasing to the artist. Another Why is a need to expand techniques, styles and to progress is something that is natural for most artists to want to do.

Another Why is that I was inspired by the artist Qin Feng, a Chinese-born artist. I was trolling the ‘net (I am a website freak…I have bookmarked tons of sites from art to food to humor to history and more) and came across this wonderful, sublime artist and his dynamic art. His form of abstract really appeals to me for this reason: it is abstract with a mix of classic and bold. The lovely lines of his work are reminiscent of the care daVinci or Ingres put into the contours of their subjects. Just powerful stuff! It really speaks! To me, he is like a graffiti artist eating caviarthat bold and sophisticated at once! There are links at the end of this post about this artist and his work.

When: I painted this two years ago. I wanted this to be part of a triptych (triptychs are basically a series of 3 works alongside each other working or relating as one artwork; there are also diptychs-2 works in a series-wonder if there are quadtychs or cinctychs…okay, I’m being ridiculous now!),but I stalled. But this month I am picking the idea up, again, and have been working on my 2nd painting in the series. You can see it in my post: “HMMMM…WHAT WILL THIS BE 2: after a faulty start, i have figured it out”

How: Did this with broad and repeated strokes of oil paint, going wayward here and there, for a lose and at once boldly defined effect! My, what a way with words. I feel like I’m writing a novel!  I also did this with a hand more accustomed to realism and naturalism, accustomed to controlled and careful and very detailed work and not abstract. I’m more Renaissance than Rauschenberg. I’ve done abstract before; simplification before, but only within classroom situations in high school and college. I knew abstract is an art style and respected the artists (old and new) of the movement, but I did not have the appreciation that I had for realists, naturalists; old and new. But I am growing in that appreciation, so I guess I also created this piece-not only with oil paint and brushes-but also with an open mind and appreciation for the dynamics of abstract art.

Final note: When I was finished with the piece, I was actually sad that I was done because it was so much fun to do! It turned out nicely, to me. What do you think? All black solid paths and wisps against a bed of deep crimson. To me, this painting ended up having a decidedly Asian look to it, which is great as I love Asian art and influences. Makes me think of the long, deep black wispy hair that those scary ghosts have in movies like The Grudge. Except my painting is much less frightening, doesn’t make those creepy throat sounds and won’t have me running out of my house!

Thanks for reading this post and please do view my other posts and also pages in this blog! My next post will be the 11th art analysis and it is a long time coming and will be on a piece of art that was featured in these posts: “BACK TO BASICS: drawing in progress 2” and “BACK TO BASICS: drawing in progress 1”. I finally finished the piece a few months back. Below is a detail of the artwork (I will post full image and more in the next art analysis!!):

DETAIL. This is a sneak peek of Art Analysis 11!

View more art at: http://paintingsilove.com/artist/caloniejohnson THANKS!

Definition of abstract art: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abstract_art

Qin Feng (artist that I am a new fan of!): http://qinfeng-art.com/ and http://www.artnet.com/artists/qin%20feng/

HMMMM…WHAT WILL THIS BE? 2: after a faulty start, i have figured it out


In the post “HMMMM…WHAT WILL THIS BE?:  new art”, I posted the image below. I was trying to figure out what it should be. I thought I had it all figured out when I began drawing preliminary running figures (coincidentally while it is Olympics season, right now) and then started painting the figures. My plan was to finish painting the figures (3 in different running poses) and then paint in a cool graffiti effect on there. But as I was painting one figure, I messed up!! I ended up overpainting one leg and all of a sudden it looked ugly. And then that affected the entire work for me: it went from ugly to worse—>a plain ole a stupid idea. That is true artist fashion: you go from, “This looks great, I’m inspired to keep at it!” to, “This sucks. I hate it.” Inner artist rage musters. From motivated to demotivated with one mistake. Blah. So…

…I have replaced that with this (below)! Actually, I painted a whole new board yellow because I painted the one above a black-ish green. But then I missed the yellow and rather then wait for the black-ish green board to dry, I painted a new board yellow and have now come up with the image below. The solid grounds of the canvases inpired me to finish where I left off two years ago: completing a triptych (3 relating pieces working together as one) inspired by (not copied from, mind you) the abstract artist Qin Feng. So this is the 2nd piece. I am not too crazy about it, yet. What do YOU think? Feel free to post comments on your thoughts! I, personally,, think I need to refine it and make it more substantial. It seems too weak, somehow and not at all looking like it relates very much to the 1st one, which is much more bold. But as I said, it is the 2nd part in a 3 part series. That means the first one…

…looks like this (look below)! I ended up liking this 1st one more than I thought I would! I am more of a realism, naturalism, classcal ar, daVinci, Ingres type person, but I have been appreciating the simple and dynamic beauty of abstract art more and more, lately! I want the other two I produce to be worthy of being displayed alongside this piece. I will write a “WHATWHYWHENHOW: Artwork Analysis” on this piece within the next couple days. It’s only fitting, now!

3 Paths. Oil on canvas. 2010.

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View more art at http://www.paintingsilove.com/artist/caloniejohnson

I have also bitten the tumblr bug: http://caloniedoesarttwo.tumblr.com/

A MULTI-TASKING GALLERY: a day at City Art Gallery


When I lived in South Carolina (I moved to FL, this month!), I made an effort to visit this very chill and awesome gallery in Columbia, SC. I call this a multi-tasking gallery because it is 3 things rolled into one: exhibit/gallery space, a place to buy art and a place to buy art supplies. There are even 3 levels: the basement has a MEGA shipload full of art supplies, 1st floor is an exhibit area featuring  current shows and the 2nd floor is an exhibit area for local artists. Classes and discussions/events on art also take place, here. It’s a vibrant scene. Stopping here is always a treat and I hope I can visit again! Here, I have some highlights of my last visit which took place in April.

(Note: The smaller photos were taken with my cell-yes, I doubled up using that & my digital camera-hence their much lighter coloring-I did not adjust the settings, 1st.  Also, I like to credit artworks by other artists, but the labels I photographed featuring the artists’ names turned out blurry…so I hope I don’t get in trouble!!)

City Art Gallery in Columbia, SC (this photo is from kathycaseyart.net)

  • This is the front of the building, but the way into the lot makes it look like it is the side. and it is in the same area as restaurants, other art venues and interesting little shops. On this visit, I forgot that there is free parking in their lot and, instead, parked in an area you gotta pay to park. Once I had my duh moment, I re-parked in this lot. Saved me some quarters because I stayed longer!

This is the 1st floor of the gallery. There is a wide space for exhibit space and classes, discussions.

  • As the caption states, this is one view of the 2nd floor. It’s a gorgeous scene and I love the strings of lights, classy piano, gritty brick walls and the natural wood floor and other wood touches. It is about as artful as the actual works featured. This particular floor houses current exhibitons. the exhibit that was up during this period included neat, quirky photography. I strolled around them for quite a while!

Another view. I want a piano! (As mentioned above, this and some others were taken with my mobile, hence the size.)

  • I wonder if I would have played the piano would I have gotten kicked out?……………………………?

A series of photographs depicting night scenes! Makes me want to go out! Lights! Bars! Night time! *sigh*

  • I love the vast perspective in these images and the coloring.

Really?? This was too fun! Photography depicting people sleeping in various places and spaces.

Feel sleepy looking at these people sleeping, aren’t ya?

A triptych of a skyscape. I stared at this for quite some time…

This is really neat, the freeing imagery and the arrange,ment work well together.

This is another room off the 2nd floor space. I felt this was a ragingly perfect photo opp! Reminds me off the Three Graces…

Neat!

Made it to the 2nd floor gallery space which featuresmany local artists. This series of lowcountry scenes are peaceful and light!

A piece by famed artist & SC native Tarleton Blackwell depicts Uncle Sam in the midst of social concern. Read more about Blackwell in the link at the end of this post!

  • When I was in college, Tarleton Blackwell was one of the names our professors mentioned and I took my 1st trip to City Art with my a college art class. I fell in love with the place that day and I saw Blackwell’s work for the first time that day, as well. His work speaks very much on society, racism and politics. His work goads you into thinking and introspection…and into remembering reality.

I really took to the bold industrial paintings of this artist, Joseph Byrne. The details and colors are vivid! Read more about Byrne in the link at the end of this post!

Another dynamic piece by Byrne…

A cavalcade of very unique works by different artists…

  • I trolled this section for quite a long time taking in so much and taking alot of photos!!

 

Like the Great Wall of Charcoal Stuff! *drooooooool*

  • I made it to the basement. I intentionally saved that for last! City Art has more art supply goodies than you can throw a brick at!….I know, that makes no sense. I didn’t know what else to say!! When I was here on that visit, I bought a drawing pad, a compressed sanguine (reddish clay color) charcoal stick, a black charcoal stick and a couple other things. But I think HALF that store would be dry if I coulda gotten all the things I REALLY wanted! But I was glad for what I did get because I needed them!

Paintbrushes and other painting supplies. What I would like to do is position my arm on every shelf in this ENTIRE basement and run my arm down them, knocking every supply in sight down in one fell sweep…right into a HUGE bag. That is what I would like to do.

Canvas. *weep*

And that is IT!! I had a lovely visit and soaked it all into my mind, but I’m glad the post is done. PHEW!! I had to deal with some glitches, but it’s completed. I really hope you enjoyed reading and viewing the photos and there are links below for more info on City Art, Tarleton Blackwell and Joe Byrne!

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WHATWHYWHENHOW: Artwork Analysis 5


3 Paths. Oil. 2010.

Another in a series of analyses on my art.

Feel free to comment with questions you may still have.

3 Paths

WHAT: Looks like a cluster of well placed strokes done in a painting frenzy, huh? Or maybe some of you are thinking, “That is the COOLest letter “A” I have ever seen!” I’ll give it some more credit than that, though. Abstract art and simplified art are more complex than what I used to give it credit for. Me, of the devotion to realism, naturalism styles and Renaissance period. Even painting with the more freeing, loose style of the most simple (because there ARE, visually-speaking, more complicated examples of it out there) abstract art that consist of strokes, quick lines or big gong-size circles or squares on canvas…there still is a “method to the madness” (as my painting instructor, Dr. H. I’ll call him, used to say). Even when the work appears to be something that took as much mental effort as it takes to pick your nose, it is more complex than that! Much more. Even the most simple work came with a method and a lot of thinking. The title, “3 Paths”, refers to a visual secret in the paintng itself, a secret that is so obvious you can see it, really.

Here is a theoretical look at what abstract art is:

Abstract art uses a visual language of form, color and line to create a composition which may exist with a degree of independence from visual references in the world. Western art had been, from the Renaissance up to the middle of the 19th century, underpinned by the logic of perspective and an attempt to reproduce an illusion of visible reality. The arts of cultures other than the European had become accessible and showed alternative ways of describing visual experience to the artist. By the end of the 19th century many artists felt a need to create a new kind of art which would encompass the fundamental changes taking place in technology, science and philosophy. The sources from which individual artists drew their theoretical arguments were diverse, and reflected the social and intellectual preoccupations in all areas of Western culture at that time.

Abstract art, nonfigurative art, nonobjective art, and nonrepresentational art are loosely related terms. They are similar, although perhaps not of identical meaning. – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abstract_art

WHY: I’d been on an art binge! I was drawing and Photoshoping and photographing all over the place…painting was next! I was on creative overdrive at the time…pencils, brushes, charcoals, paint, files flinging everywhere! Art glutton, outta control! It was goodtimes. That’s one reason why I created this piece; it was another creative outlet. Another reason was work I saw by an abstract artist named Qin Feng (check out a link to his site under “Artists” on the sidebar). WOW! I mean, this man is dynamic with the seemingly most serene techniques! If I was gonna get more into abstract art, this was the way to be inspired-visually aggressive, harmonious, beautiful art. Less time-consuming than subjective art, NON-subjective art is so freeing! Like wind in your brush! Kinda…

WHEN: This was done in 2010.

HOW: This was produced with blood (the red ground) and tar (the black strokes). …….. .. … …….I was waiting for you to believe that. You probably did, seeing as how I’m an artist and the fact that artists like to try all sorts of media for expression. So, noooo, it’s not blood and tar, its just simple old, expensive oil paint. Blood would freak people out & make me seem psychotic! Tar would be awesome……..I would try that. So, anyway, it’s OIL paint. I love oil paint. So rich and full of depth! Like 3D with a pigment, oil and a brush! As to how else this was done, I just let my hand go. Seriously! I wasn’t trying to think beyond what I wanted to convey & composition (placement). Beyond that, I did not think because thinking too much would have made it too studied and stiff. I just told my brain, “SHUT UP!” and let my hand have a mind of its own as my brain sulked in the corner.

Thank you for reading my NEW POST!  Come back because there will definitely be more!

view more art at: http://paintingsilove.com/artist/caloniejohnson THANKS!

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My Favorite Art Media: the right tools make the right art!!


 

Drawing a storm cloud, wit charcoal, over the Caribbean Sea. 2009.

I just wanted to put together a list of my favorite art media (supplies). I encourage you to post, in COMMENTS, your favorite(s) and why! (all definitions, in ITALICS,  are  from wikipedia.com)

1) GRAPHITE – The mineral graphite is one of the allotropes of carbon. It was named by Abraham Gottlob Werner in 1789 from the Ancient Greek γράφω (graphō), “to draw/write”,  for its use in pencils, where it is commonly called lead (not to be confused with the metallic element lead).

Graphite is my first media love because, besides crayons, it was the first tool I started to lear my craft with WAAAAY  back as a munchkin of 3 or4. Thanks, mom & teachers! I went from the HB that eveyone knows to more sophisticated pencils specifically for visual art, a cavalcade of posibilities varying in tone & grades (H is lighter and B is darker, HB & F, yes, F! are in the middle): I prefer lighter grades, like H to 3H for ex. for preliminary work. The darker tones, like 6B for ex., for finishing. Graphite is delicate and allows for great detailing! Endless effects!

2) CHARCOAL –Charcoal is the dark grey residue consisting of impure carbon obtained by removing water and other volatile constituents from animal and vegetation substances. Charcoal is usually produced by slow pyrolysis, the heating of wood or other substances in the absence of oxygen (see pyrolysis, char and biochar). The resulting soft, brittle, lightweight, black, porous material resembles coal. Charcoal in art: Charcoal is used in art for drawing, making rough sketches in painting and is one of the possible media for making a parsemage. It must usually be preserved by the application of a fixative. Artists generally utilize charcoal in three forms:

  • Vine charcoal is created by burning sticks of wood (usually willow or linden/Tilia) into soft, medium, and hard consistencies.[citation needed]
  • Compressed charcoal charcoal powder mixed with gum binder compressed into round or square sticks. The amount of binder determines the hardness of the stick. Compressed charcoal is used in charcoal pencils.
  • Powdered charcoal is often used to “tone” or cover large sections of a drawing surface. Drawing over the toned areas will darken it further, but the artist can also lighten (or completely erase) within the toned area to create lighter tones.

Before my sophisticated (yes…I am now a charcoal sophisticate) use of this medium developed, I was clunky and it was MESSY! I did NOT like it. But as it is dark and rich, not to mention one can get some funky effects from the fact it is messy, I kept being drawn to master it. Now, I utilize it just as if it were graphite. Depending on the grade (light or dark) and the pressure I use, charcoal can result in numerous appearances: lines, value work, textures. Possibilities are awesome!

3) OIL PAINT Oil paint is a type of slow-drying paint that consists of particles of pigment suspended in a drying oil, commonly linseed oil. The viscosity of the paint may be modified by the addition of a solvent such as turpentine or white spirit, and varnish may be added to increase the glossiness of the dried film. Oil paints have been used in Europe since the 12th century for simple decoration, but were not widely adopted as an artistic medium until the early 15th century.

Oil paint…what can I say? It really is a glorious medium. I have always adored it. Even in the early stages of using it when I had to try and master blending one color or value into another, avoiding the look of color-block. If one doesn’t blend correctly in ANY media (paint, graphite, etc., the result can be a blatant visual jump from one color or value to the next instead of a natural blend. HATE that! Anyhow, I am mentally AND emotionally…even spiritually…taken in by the richness of and the 3D illusion that oils can give! That house really does appear it is in the distance or his skin appears as though one can actually touch flesh. WOW. And the colors & neutrals (non-colors like white, black, brown)  just speak volumes!

4) DIGITAL ARTDigital art is a general term for a range of artistic works and practices that use digital technology as an essential part of the creative and/or presentation process. Since the 1970s, various names have been used to describe the process including computer art and multimedia art, and digital art is itself placed under the larger umbrella term new media art. The impact of digital technology has transformed traditional activities such as painting, drawing and sculpture, while new forms, such as net art, digital installation art, and virtual reality, have become recognized artistic practices.  More generally the term digital artist is used to describe an artist who makes use of digital technologies in the production of art. In an expanded sense, “digital art” is a term applied to contemporary art that uses the methods of mass production or digital media.

I became very aware of digital art in college. Then I fell off of it after graduating. When I was able to get the Adobe CS4 on my laptop (Creative Suite which has programs like Photoshop, InDesign & Dreamweaver in it, CS5 is already out w/ even MORE wicked tricks & applications) I started buggin out with it! Creating graphic art (creating art through digital means) & graphic design (laying out graphics through digital means, like ads) is full of possibilities. It’s also quick (unlike traditional art) to work with, depending on the project. And even though drawing & painting are first for me & are the cornerstones of visual art, there is an endless range & array of visual effects you don’t always get w/ traditional art. It’s like magic using your computer! I have heard even the most professional digital artist say “you can never learn all of Photoshop.” It’s that complex. It’s waaaaaaaaaaay more than simply airbrushing celebrities for a magazine. You’d have to use it to understand…

4)DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY – Digital photography is a form of photography that uses an array of light sensitive sensors to capture the image focused by the lens, as opposed to an exposure on light sensitive film. The captured image is then stored as a digital file ready for digital processing (colour correction, sizing, cropping, etc.), viewing or printing.

Besides digital art, photography is another untraditional art form that is based in tradition. Photography is a fun and creative way to capturethe world and your perspective of it. Photography, in general, is just as exciting s digital really. Digital just makes it faster, more convenient,  less messier and more computer compliant (in application and artistically) to work with. Because of the he ability to upload digitally-taken images to computers, new realms of art creation have opened and are advancing constantly! The views to be expressed with this art form goes on and on.

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