Tuesday, November 30, 2010

November 2010 - Art Every Day Month

If it wasn't for this fantastic challenge and the challenges I've used to help my inspiration I wouldn't have...

My acrylic paintings...my first in nearly ten years...

My Wind Sculpted Trees...a derivative of zentangling that I'm still really excited about and want to explore further...

My doodley zentangles...including my first ever mandala...

Or my cartoons ...a skill I've dabbled in, but never realised I actually had any skill with...

Without Art Every Day Month, I wouldn't have any of these artworks, or have met many of the wonderful people who were participating.

I'd like to thank Leah Piken Kolidas for all her efforts in creating and maintaining the challenge. I would like to thank the wonderful people who have been commenting on my blog and spurring me on. You guys feed my pen and brush and keep me striving. Thankyou for your wonderful words. And many a thanks should also go to the maintainers of the other challenges that sparked my inspiration along the way.

I didn't manage a piece of work every day. I didn't even manage to do art every day. But I did all the above and that is one hell of a lot to be thankful for.

I may have flunked NaNoWriMo twice, but I think I've managed to achieve AEDM, and I'm really happy with what I've done.

(who's not planning on stopping any time soon)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Thriving Artists Project

Do what you love, love what you do, and thrive on it.

When I was 7, I decided that I wanted to be an artist.

I was told the only artist who could make a living was a dead one, and was discouraged from taking that path.

I'm now 37.

I want to be an artist.

And I'm not planning on dying.

(wow, my thirty year anniversary of following my crooked path...perhaps I've finally found a map?)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Illustration Friday, Sunday Sketches and AEDM

So do you think I have enough challenges tied into this post? ::grin:: Don't worry, I have a piece for each as today was a good art day.

Exhilaration, acrylic on board, approx. 300 x 300 mm.
Savour the exhilaration. 'Savour' is the challenge word this week over at Illustration Friday. All I could think of was hanging in the moment, experiencing that second to its full extent, savouring the exhilaration. A reflection of a moment I experienced several years ago that I wrote about here. There was no lightning in that incident, but I still savoured the moment to its full extent.

Gungurru, gel pen on black card, approx. 200 x 200 mm.
This Art Every Day Month exercise was a follow through from yesterday's explorations. I had been planning to experiment with white and colours on black, but only managed to buy the pens a few days ago. It didn't scan very well because the pens were metallic and glitter, but I'm happy with the effect in reality. I'm not confident about the composition of this piece, though, and may draw another to correct it.

Sunday Sketches - these are a couple of sketches from this week's adventures.

The prep sketch for Cupid for Creative Tuesday which I didn't manage to enter in the end because my phone line died on Tuesday.

And the start of a sketch that followed on from the cheeky look on Cupid's face. Nanny Numbat...

Not finished. Don't know if he ever will be.

(who had a great arty day)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Tree silhouettes - Gungurru

Gungurru, pen on fineliner paper, approx. 150 x 180 mm.
A native of the Western Australian coast, the Gungurru Eucalypt (Eucalyptus caesia) is a beautiful weeping tree with silvery white stems, blue green leaves and bright pink hanging flowers. The specimen in my front garden is var. 'Silver Princess', so you can imagine the what prompted such a name.

Some piccies of the real thing.

I wanted to illustrate the gentle movement in its shape. I'm not sure if I have succeeded, but this is my attempt. I am certainly going to explore this subject furture, perhaps using different media.

(exploring black and white representations)

Drawing Lab Challenge #8

A touch of the more traditional...

This is the eighth challenge post for the Drawing Lab Challenge. Grab your copy of 'Drawing lab for mixed media artists: 52 creative exercises to make drawing fun' and join us as we tackle the book together. Details of the challenge and joining can be found here.

This week the challenge is...

Lab 41 (Page 112).

A good excuse to get out before the heat or cold really hits.

(nature nut)

Friday, November 26, 2010

A swirling zentangle and a beautiful fly

I finally got my grotty hands on a white pen that will write on black. I've been wanting to get one for some time, but when you have small children, shopping can sometimes be happenstance and I haven't happened to be in the right place to purchase one until yesterday.

This isn't what I bought it for, I have some other plans in the zentangle zone, but I played with it for a while to get a feel for it and test what it could do. This is what I ended up with.

Swirling, white gel pen on black card, approx. 60 x 60 mm.
It's seems to be moving and staring at it too long can boggle your eyes.

It was fun and I have plans...::cackles madly while rubbing hands together eagerly::

This evening, Hubby discovered that there were a lot of ladybirds on our continental parsley plant which is currently flowering (we let it go to seed so we can collect some for next year, it was a great performer). While I adore ladybirds and was quite happy to see them, something else a little less expected also caught my eye.

It appears that I could only get a really clear shot of its butt, but since that was the prettiest part of the fly, I don't mind too much.

And here is a ladybird that I found just too posed to resist :D

I hope you're all having some goodly arty times. I did some Christmas shooping today, so this is all I have to share. Hopefully more tomorrow.

(considering a shower)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Drawing lab challenge results - Funky creatures

Okay, this one, I admit, was quite fun. And freeing in ways I haven't really done before. The reults, well, hmm, interesting, I guess. But the procedure, definitely fun.

I didn't quite finish them off as I left the exercise to the last minute again, but I think I like looking at the red, blue and yellow the way it is anyway. My favourites are the second and fourth piccies.

So how did you go? I've seen Pavinee's wonderful creations. Sorry I didn't make it clear where to post your results. I usually put up my answer to the challenge on Thursday night (South Australian time, so something like early morning UK Thursday, and middle of the night Eastern America, late night Western America Wednesday). To make that more accessible, I'm being adventurous...

I'm going to be wonderfully technically advanced and add a Mr Linky to this post like I have seen many other challenge hosts do.  So go ahead and link in your results :D

(learn something new everyday and your brain won't rot)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Internet outage

Our phone line died yesterday and cut me off from the online world for about 24 hours. So apologies for my absence. It was like having a limb chopped off!

Unfortunately, cutting internet access cut my inspiration off too, and I just lounged around in front of the TV last night instead of using all that time to do something productive. So I have no art to share :(

I'll get back into gear tomorrow, hopefully, and catch up with you all then.

Hope things have been good to all of you.

(crawling off to bed)

Monday, November 22, 2010

Creative Tuesday - Heavenly

Okay, so it's a day early, but I drew it today so here it is.

There was the whole bald, cute and nappy thing, but considering he got to sleep on a cloud and then shoot people in the butt all day, his job wasn't too bad.

Cupid, pen on bleedbroof paper, approx. 250 x 210 mm.

I like his eyes. I might do some more characters like him :D

Go visit the other great people participating in Creative Tuesday. I doubt this week's post is up, but there are plenty of goodies to be found on the blog itself. Say hi to Mr Toast for me :D

(who planned to draw something else, but is too tired and I want a shower)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sunday Sketches

The wonderful Kristin Dudish suggested I have a go at the Sunday Sketches Challenge.

So I dug out my sketch book and have some of my not so hot sketches to share. I promise in the future to actually do something constructive for this challenge.

I did scribble down Frenken Furter for the challenge, a little character that bombarded his way across my brain while I was designing a much more serious piece (that so far hasn't seen the light of day). I'm not sure what he is or if I'll ever do anything with him, but he was such a cheery fellow and cheeky at all the serious desing work happening in my head at the time that I thought I'd save him from my forgetfulness.

Hmm, I wonder if he is whimsey...

The other two pieces are currently listed as failures. I posted 'Afterwards' a short while ago and mentioned that it was my second attempt at an answer to the challenge...this was the first. I could have worked at it and got it right, but I've done precise drawing before and this isn't the field I really want to explore right now. So it sits unfinished in my sketchbook.

The expression on the baby's face changes at the slightest move of a line. It's kinda working, but not at its best. Also I have the baby at an awkward angle for the mother to hold.  The concept of 'afterwards' was after all the effort of birth there is that moment of peace for mum and bubs where they just stare at each other. Pfft, it will never be finished.

This one isn't a sketch, but so far it is a lame work-in-progress - read 'not working so needs to be beaten into shape or painted over'. I slapped this together today. The concept is evolving and not really working the way it should. Also, I suck at life drawing.

Now go visit some of the other peoples who have done way better than this.  There is some lovely work over there - Sunday Sketches.

(off to bed at a decent time)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Colour experiments - Green Fireworks

This effort was a follow through from Fallen and Embers. It has more in common with Embers, but was actually inspired by a piccy that I found right next to the piccy that inspired Fallen :D

Green Fireworks, acrylic on board, approx. 300 x 300 mm.
I was angry and continually distracted by the children while doing this, so it was done fast and not with the care I normally give a piece due to time constraints. There was much frustration and mumbling under my breath as I struggled to get it done. I didn't give the subject what it was due and technically speaking it is not completely finished as I haven't painted the sides of the board as yet.

So my impression of it is currently stained with my emotional state at the time. I will have to put it away and get it out later to determine fully whether I think it works or not.

Speaking of emotion...

I'm considering starting a new challenge.

I've been thinking about hosting a challenge here for some time, simply because I'd like to contribute to this wonderful creative blogosphere, but there are so many challenges out there, it has taken me some time to think of one that would add some value to participants rather than just repeating something that is already out there.

This is my idea...

Many of us sell our work (not me yet, simply because I don't have any to sell), some of us just create because we were born to do it, would likely die if we didn't, and just like to share what we've done (I'm in this camp), and some of us are in both camps. In any case, we all like people to look at our art, maybe comment or give that dash of feedback, or simply feel what we wanted them to feel, know what we wanted to communicate.

I recently read an article somewhere, can't remember where, about why people buy art. The main point made was that the buyer needs to have an emotional connection to the work in order to even consider purchase.

So how do we get those who see our work into an emotional state that will have them remarking, commenting, telling their friends, or handing over their money?

I propose we exercise and experiment with this idea. I'm thinking of setting an emotion, a reaction, or a state of mind to generate in those who see your art. For example, you can make a person feel sad with the right imagery and mood in an art piece like rain, morose faces, or you can generate fond memories with images of children at the beach or playground or something you think you and your audience might have in common. Heh, our kitchen tap drips. It is the most irritating sound on the planet to me, so if anyone develops a sculpture housed in a silent room with a tap that drips at just the right speed, they could inspire a whole pile of violent emotions in me :D

So what do you think? If I post a challenge, say, once a fortnight (or maybe a month? This one requires more brainpower than I have available in only a week, I'm not sure I'm going to be able to pull off successful artwork for this myself, so extra time is needed). And we can see if we can generate the right response in our audience and ourselves. This would also be a great opportunity for honest feedback on this aspect of art between challengers, because we all need to learn.

It should also be noted that I would like all the responses suitable for mature audiences, but not delve into the depths of NC-17 (or R18+) as it would be easy to fall into that trap with emotionally strong content. Advertisers do it every day without breaching those lines on TV, so we can do it too.

So do you think you can make your audience love, hate, cry, grin, laugh, remember, groan, wonder?

(always full of ideas)

Friday, November 19, 2010

Drawing Lab Challenge #7

Now for some serious fun...

This is the seventh challenge post for the Drawing Lab Challenge. Grab your copy of 'Drawing lab for mixed media artists: 52 creative exercises to make drawing fun' and join us as we tackle the book together. Details of the challenge and joining can be found here.

This week the challenge is...

Lab 8 (Page 30).

This is going to be very interesting.

(determined to do some art this weekend)

PS: There have been quite a few people joining us in this challenge along the way. Those of you who are newish, could you please check the Drawing Lab Challenge page to see if you are listed as one of the challengers. I'd hate to miss some of you. Let me know if you're missing and I'll add you asap.

Wind sculpted trees - Determined

It has been one of those weeks. I haven't managed to do much art and haven't even posted to my blog, which is even more disappointing. I'm not sure what happened. Real life ate me, I guess.

I have had something on the go. Something that should have taken me one day, but instead took four...as I said, that kind of week.
Determined, pen on fineliner paper, approx. 270 x 200 mm.
I don't think it is as effective as some of the previous ones (here and here), but it has some value. I'm certainly going to continue my explorations in this area. That and I just maybe a little down in the dumps about my performance this week. Hmph.

Drawing Lab Challenge - Hah! Um, no, I didn't manage to do it. Maybe I'll have a go in catch up week.

I hope you did better than I.

(a touch depressed)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Challenge list

I have no art to post, but since I'm up at 3am, I thought I'd knock up a list of the challenges I am currently involved in as my little brain is starting to lose track of them. Also, anyone else like to join me in tackling them, jump in :D

Creative Every Day
Art Every Day Month
Drawing Lab Challenge
Creative Tuesday
Whimsical Wednesday
The Little Art Club (a new one I just discovered a moment ago, looks interesting)
Illustration Friday
Inspiration Avenue

I haven't participated in all of these as yet, but I have them in mind and check them to see if they inspire something. Most have which is always a good thing :D

Anyone have any other challenges they could recommend me? After all, no one can have too many points of inspiration and I'm often slow to get in with the latest goss :D

(considering bed at 4.30am)