ArtiPhacts was created as a place to present and discuss my musings on the components and underlying philosophies of living an artistic life. It is a backdrop for displaying examples of various art forms, and a place where I can share tips and techniques related to art in general.
I've been getting lots of queries lately about choosing and using collage fodder. Probably because right now there are so many art classes, both online and in-person, that use collage in one form or another. At this point in art history the art journal format is widely popular, and collage is very often the medium of choice, or at least in some way incorporated onto the pages of journals and sketchbooks.
It has been a while since I've taught classic adult art lessons in a classroom setting, but it occurred to me that a lot of what's missing from all the "how-tos" online, at workshop events, and at in-shop classes, are the basics. It's easy to find quick, hands-on techniques, but the basics, well, they take time to teach, time to learn, and are just not all that much fun for your $, £, and €. But, if you don't have a grasp of them, then all those techniques you've learned will leave you asking, "What's first? What's next? What's important? and Where do I begin?" Click HERE to continue reading...
It's 2 PM and I'm sitting in front of my compose screen in my fuzzy slippers. I've been awake for hours and hours. Reading, mostly. Absorbing and thinking. Drawing a little, too.
Some of my most productive hours are the ones I spend reading and writing in bed, just after waking. All of my "A" papers in college were written this way, and most of the doodles in sketchbooks which worked out the details for paintings, drawings, and fiber constructions. I wondered if it was odd, and I wondered if I was unusual for working this way, but it was too productive for me to waste time with deconstruction and analysis. I had to just do it. Because it worked. Click HERE to continue reading...
It's pretty widely understood that athletes can increase their performance by training in multiple disciplines. Performance in football, baseball, tennis, and other sports which require quick, agile, responses are greatly improved by jogging, long-distance running, and exercises to designed to increase flexibility. We don't think twice about the benefits that cross-training brings to sports, but it is equally valuable to the arts. If you are interested in my thoughts on this topic, click HERE to continue reading...
...I'm not referring to plagiarism, copyright violation, or anything else that implies anything used illegally or without permission. This is simply about adding papers, images, stamps, ephemera, stickers, tapes, rub-ons, collage images, and anything else that could fall into the category of "sold for the purpose of making art".
Here and there you pick up conversations about the pros and cons about the use of things in artwork that were not made expressly by the artist. At one end, there's the group that would always forbid anything not made by the artist, except maybe the paper and the crayon. At the other extreme, there's the (thankfully small) group of people who buy a stamp, ink it, stamp it, and say "Look what I made".
In my opinion, the first group lacks imagination and needs to "get real"! After all, would they invalidate one of Lidia's fabulous and famous spaghetti sauce recipes because the the tomatoes were tinned instead of hand-pressed fresh? Possibly, but I would hope not. And the latter--well, maybe if you're 5, but any older than that and you'd better just say "Look what I stamped"!
There is a thin line that runs through the middle of this however, and assuming that copyright issues are not a factor, there is also some legitimate concern over what you should call your own, and what ethically should be credited to others, even though you assembled it. If you're interested in my thoughts on this, click HERE to continue reading...
While I'm waiting for the mediums to dry--I'm working in acrylics on one of my ubiquitous art journals at the moment--I'm thinking about what it takes to stay in the mood, or in the groove: to stay creative in the sense of quality, and perhaps quantity, also.
There are lots of prompts out there to get you in the mood. Lots of advice to get you up from a funk, or beyond the blank paper staring you in the face. Short-term cures and band-aids for little cuts and bruises are good. But what about a cure? Is there anything that you can do to prevent a funk? To keep your mojo working all the time? Or at least, most of the time? If you're interested in what I have to say about this, then click HERE and read on. . .
Today is the official birth of ArtiPhacts, although it's been in the works for a few months now. Those of you who visit my blog ArtiphyTheHeart know what a burst of colors I often work with. ArtiPhacts, what my daughter likes to call my "black and white blog", is a respite from color. Although, as time goes on, you will find photo albums with color pics of my not-made-for-challenges artwork, and pages of tutorials, reviews, and information on the arts in general, complete with color when color is called for. In a nutshell, while ArtiphyTheHeart will remain the home for the artwork I create, ArtiPhacts will become home to short posts with links to pages of longer personal musings and items of general, usually artistic, interest.
So without further ado, crack open a bottle of champagne, sparkling water, or whatever you celebrate with, get some noise makers, cut yourself a slice of cake, put on a party hat and sing happy birthday to ArtiPhacts! And if you're up for it, under "pages" on the sidebar, click on "Playing With Tone in Photshop CS3" for a tutorial on how to turn a regular image--yes, you may start with something in color--into a series of tone like this one of my daughter, Amy. You'll want to click to enlarge it for the full effect of the dot pattern.
'ar-ti-fakts\ n. L. arte = skill + factum, of facere = to do. 1. Characteristic products of human activity, as usually hand-made objects (as tools or ornaments) representing a particular culture or stage of technological development.