Thursday 30 May 2013

Painting of the Day: "Rafa"

"Rafa" by Gabriel Moreno.

  The juxtaposition of the monochrome of the model against the colours of the cloth is what made me like this piece. What is the main subject in this painting? Is it the girl, or the cloth? As artists, we're taught to place details in the main subject, so did the artist intentionally place details in the cloth? The artist has a background in fashion illustration, perhaps that might be the reason. I also loved the detail of a tattoo on the girl's left arm, and the beautiful flourish of lines that represent her hair.

  Visit Gabriel Moreno's website via this link.

Wednesday 29 May 2013

DIY: Custom iPhone Case

Step 1: Buy yourself a clear iPhone case.

Step 2: Trace the outline of your iPhone onto a paper of your choice. I recommend using slightly thicker paper, and you could use any kind of coloured paper. I used some high-quality drawing paper that was left over from my other projects.

Step 3: Cut template out. Remember to also cut out the shape of the hole for the camera. Fit the template into the iPhone case to see if it fits well.

Step 4: Get artsy. Go crazy with the design. Use glitter pens, coloured pens, or even collage over it. I did some zentangle on mine.

Step 5: Place the template into the iPhone case, then fit your iPhone into the case and you're good to go.  ^_^

  This DIY project can be re-done as often as you'd like. It's easy to do, requires very little time to complete, and could also make for a great personalised gift for family and friends. I hope you've found it useful, and leave me a comment in the comment section below showing me a link to your own creations. I'd love to see what designs you come up with.

Tuesday 21 May 2013

Stephanie's Sketches: v.2

  I've been busy, busy, busy these few days. :) A good kind of busy. I've done loads of sketches and I thought of showing them to you.

 "Broken Green"
It was done with the idea that it would become the art work I would put on the front page of my website. It didn't go as planned and I'm not 100% happy with it, but I think it's still alright. It's too "broken up", in my opinion. Too disjointed, and a little too messy.

I still have not signed it in ink because I'm still trying to figure out whether I want it to be a horizontal piece or a vertical piece...

Eden means "heaven" with its biblical roots. This one is written in Greek and was for someone I knew.

"Green Koi"
Seems like I have a certain soft spot for the colour green. :) I like this one quite a bit.

"Random Colours"
I actually didn't intend for this to become a doodle. I was just laying down random colours on paper out of boredom and when I found I was going nowhere, I abadoned the piece. I thought it was rather odd for one piece in my sketchbook to be left completely unfinished so I drew "Paradox" on it and the above was the result.

"Stream of Conscious"
Didn't know where I was going to end up when I began this piece. It has become one of my favorite pieces. :) I like the fluidity of it and how everything fits together very nicely.

  And that's about it. I've also updated my website, and if you're interested to take a look you can view it via this link:

Friday 17 May 2013

Recommended Artist: Irina Vinnik

  Irina Vinnik's lines are carefully planned and yet do not feel overly constricted. There's a sort of glow in her monochrome works that bring much charm to the pieces. And her watercolours are harmonious and compositionally balanced.

  I needed to remind myself of the beauty of a simple line. How funny it is that outlines do not exist in the real world, and yet that is the first thing a child learns when he or she draws– to outline the object he or she is portraying. We reward our children for keeping their colours within the lines and yet we forget that more often letting creativity take us on a journey leads to much more interesting results.

  Visit her website via this link.

Saturday 11 May 2013

Recommended Artist: Juan Francisco Casas

  Juan Francisco Casas draws brilliant hyper-realistic drawings, and the best part is that they're all done with just ballpoint pens. The humble ballpoint pen... Just let that sink in for a bit. I was going through his website and I was continually amazed by how much talent he had. Then I found out that the pictures he uses as references come from nights out with his friends, and I began to think.... He uses pictures that one would typically post on Myspace or Facebook, and elevates them to a status of Fine Art. He's using his talents to keep viewers engaged, but the subjects depicted sometimes make you uncomfortable. Yet, there is no rule that said art had to be of deliberately posed figures, or of flowers, or rainbows or scenery. So then, why are you uncomfortable?

  I've begun to question where the line is drawn to differentiate the erotic nude and porn. Gustav Klimt created many controversies in his time for being overtly open about the sensuality of women, so perhaps Juan Casas is the Gustav Klimt of our time... His artwork is beautiful because he has caught people in their crazier moments when they were being true to their emotions, because he does hyper-realistic works but they depict raunchy scenes, he goes against the rules that society has of how women should be depicted in Art. And I guess that's why viewers keep wanting to see more.

  Also, "Fuck Art, Love Artists" is a brilliant slogan. Maybe that's another message he's trying to send across to viewers– that Art is defined only by the viewer and that, really, anything can be Art and so the standards that society has that state that "abc is Art but xyz isn't" is nonsense and that an artist should be supported as long as what he/she creates is good, even if he/she goes against those standards.

  I deliberately chose works of his that were more... conservative (let's just put it that way...). To see all his works, visit his website via this link.

Wednesday 8 May 2013

Recommended Artist: Adam S Doyle

  The beauty of a mark. The flick of a wrist, a brush onto canvas. Adam S Doyle makes sure that his brushstrokes are visible in his final works. I find that bold, daring, and very technical. As artists, we're always fussing over making out Art pieces perfect. We always want everything to look 'just right'. But correcting time and time again makes the painting lose its spontaneity.

  I think Adam S Doyle's paintings remind us that there is a whole lot of beauty in a brushstroke. Eliminate the details. Stop fussing over perfection and just enjoy the process. You might be surprised at the outcome.

View his website via this link.

Saturday 4 May 2013

Recommended Artist: Nina Johanson

  Born in 1970 in Gävle, Sweden, Nina Johanson started drawing as soon as she could hold a crayon in her hand (they say). She grew up in Umeå further up north, where she kept drawing and painting but studied Maths, Natural Science, and Language instead.

  It wasn't until her early twenties after she went to art school for a year that she felt that Art was her calling. In 1996, she moved to Stockholm, and eventually went to Konstfack (University College of Arts, Crafts and Design) for the Art Teacher Education Program.

Now, she works in a school south of Stockholm, teaching art, design, film-making, photography, computer graphics and web design to kids aged between 15 and 19. And in her spare time she does "pretty much the same things, but without the teaching," as she puts it.

  I love the compositions she employs in her sketches. They're very dynamic and eye-catching. In her pen and ink sketches, the tonal values used are perfectly rendered to give viewers a sense of space, and the depth in each scene is very well drawn. In her coloured sketches, the colours used are eye catching yet very pleasing and harmonious. I could learn a thing or two from her- sketching as often as I can, and not being afraid to draw en plein air.

  Visit her website by clicking this.