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Article on painting when you're stuck waiting

I don't mind being marooned somewhere, as long as I've got my paints. That's the subject of my new article in International Artist. I don't know why, but the less choice I have in selecting a motif, the more successful I am. Maybe it comes of being forced to improvise. International Artist (#109, June/July 2016).

Eye Candy for Today: Van Gogh’s painted copy of Hiroshige print

Bridge in the rain: after Hiroshige, Vincent van Gogh. Zoomable image on Google Art Project; downloadable file on Wikipedia; original is in the Van Gogh Museum. Sudden shower over Shin-Ohashi bridge and Atake, Utagawa Hiroshige; file on Wikipedia. About mid-way through his all too short career, Vincent van Gogh, like many of the French Impressionists […]

Bill Vrscak

Bill Vrscak is a watercolor painter and illustrator based in the Pittsburgh, PA area. He has a wonderfully appealing combination of solid draftsmanship and crisp but free application of color. I particularly enjoy his paintings that incorporate large areas of open space, which he expertly uses to guide your eye through his composition. On his […]

Maquettes and Imagination at Millburn High

Yesterday I visited the advanced-placement art students in Millburn, New Jersey. Under the guidance of teacher and artist Kathleen Harte-Gilsenan, they built maquettes of a variety of creatures. When I got there, they lit and shot them and used them to inspire sketches in black and white gouache. Show More Summary

Black and White

. There's a lot of great work in Chelsea and the Lower East Side right now--more than I can report on in individual posts--so I'll be offering a few roundups. The first is this one: a look at a range of work in black and white. SomeShow More Summary

Propeller Powered Sled

Here's one of the more unusual vehicles stored in the old barns out behind the Rhinebeck Aerodrome. Basically it's an aircraft engine and open propeller mounted on the back of a 1920s-era body, with sled runners instead of wheels. Old timers told me they would take this thing out on the Hudson River ice in the winter and zoom along at 60 miles per hour.

Eye Candy for Today: Harriet Backer interior

Blue Interior, Harriet Backer Link is to zoomable version on Google Art Project; downloadable file on Wikipedia, original is in the The National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design, Oslo; the Norwegan online DigitaltMuseum also has a zoomable image. Norwegan painter Harriet Backer, who was active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, was […]

Adventure Sketching in Nepal

After the earthquake in Nepal a year ago, artist Jeremy Collins traveled there with his GoPro cameras to record his adventures. The video shows how he sketched people, painted murals on buildings, and drew while hang gliding. (link to YouTube) Jeremy Collins website

Bayard Wu

Bayard Wu is a concept artist and illustrator based in Shenzhen, China. He works in the fantasy genre, creating scenes with dragons, monsters and warriors. His dragons, in particular, are rendered with nicely tactile textural characteristics, emphasized by dramatic lighting and muted color palettes. He also places his scenes in atmospheric backgrounds, with suggestions of […]

Van Dyck Exhibition Report

Last Saturday I visited the exhibition of Anthony Van Dyck (Flemish/English 1599-1641) at the Frick Collection in New York. Van Dyck, Self-Portrait, ca. 1613-1615 With approximately 100 works on view, Van Dyck: The Anatomy of Portraiture...Show More Summary

Eye Candy for Today: Arthur Hughes’s April Love

April Love, Arthur Hughes Link is to zoomable version on Google Art Project; downloadable file on Wikipedia; original is in the Tate, Britain, with a detailed description here. Hughes’s best known work, and one of the most popular Pre-Raphaelite paintings in general, this visual poem to the fleeting nature of young love was first exhibited […]

Sketching in Museums with Kids

Blog reader Joanna Hiltz says, "I've been sketching in art museums with my daughter since she was 4. It's a great learning tool. We will circle the room deciding what we like the most before settling in a nearby bench." "The process requires her to slow down, be still, quiet and really study it as she works. Show More Summary

Art Venti

Art Venti is a California based artist who creates large scale works on paper in a variety of media, primarily color pencils, watercolor markers and watercolor. He classifies some of his compositions as “pencil paintings”. His subjects can perhaps be considered imaginary realism, representing swirls and curves of paper-like bands, twisted gossamer draperies and diaphanous […]

Discussion of Sketching Bans on BoingBoing

Auguste Rodin, Feuilles de croquis, c.1871-1877 (Source) Thanks to Mark Frauenfelder of the blog BoingBoing for bringing up the discussion about bans on sketching in special exhibitions.

How to Make Vintage Stop-Motion Dinosaurs

In this 1967 video from British Pathé, prehistoric model maker Arthur Hayward of London's Natural History Museum shows he constructs miniature dinosaurs for stop motion films. (Link to YouTube) Thanks, Torbjörn Lantz Jörgensen, Simon Davis, and Garin Baker

On the Metro North

I got lucky this time. The guy sitting across from me on the train to New York yesterday spent most of the ride looking at his cellphone.The sketch is mostly done in watercolor, in a Pentalic watercolor sketchbook, with a few touches of gouache, water-soluble colored pencils, and fountain pen with brown ink. Show More Summary

Eye Candy for Today: Edwin Landseer scene from Shakespeare

Scene from A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Titania and Bottom, Edwin Landseer Link is to zoomable version on Google Art Project; downloadable file on Wikimedia Commons; original is in the National Gallery of Victoria, which also has a zoomable version. Edwin Landseer was a Victorian painter noted in particular for his sensitive and beautifully portrayals of […]

Bans on Sketching in Museums

Photo Oliver Wainwright, The Guardian The Victoria and Albert Museum has installed signs banning sketching in the special exhibition Undressed: A Brief History of Underwear, according to the Guardian.Such bans in special exhibitions have happened before at other museums. Show More Summary

Harold Speed on Oil Painting Mediums

Welcome to the GJ Book Club. Today we'll cover pages 217-227 of the chapter on "Materials," from Harold Speed's 1924 art instruction book Oil Painting Techniques and Materials.I'll present Speed's main points in boldface type either verbatim or paraphrased, followed by my comments. Show More Summary

Iryna Yermolova

Iryna Yermolova is a Ukrainian artist now based in the the UK. She primarily paints figures and still life. I find her loose, gestural style and rich color palette particularly appealing in the latter. She often defines her forms in brusquely textural blocks and planes of color, giving her work a tactile, sculptural quality that […]

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