Doodling serves as a means of keeping the hand or fingers limber, so that they are always ready for serious work.
~ Charles E. Burchfield (https://www.azquotes.com/)
One Sketch: Two drawings-Two Approaches
Nothing special to say. I wanted to share some work and one of my favorite artists, Charles E. Burchfield, the feeling he could evoke and the many communication signals he used to communicate through his work, experiences, time, and period.
In seed time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy.
~ William Blake (Art Quotes)
I keep bouncing between enjoying and learning and sometimes teaching, but at the moment, learning is taking precedence. Over the past two years, I have worked in Blender, creating models for Second Life. It is satisfying, but I don’t know how or why it informs my work.
Drawing currently is taking two forms—first, the multi-media small works.
Most drawings are about 5″ x 5″, some a bit larger. I also find 5″ x 7″ a good size to work with. They primarily are drawings using ink and colored pencils. I am becoming aware that these inked drawings are really paintings. The two elements I am paying attention to are texture and color. The substrate is another element I am experimenting with as well. I worked with found paper for a long while, which expanded my knowledge of my media’s response to the surface.
Digitally I am working with Procreate. This is a process and program I have spent time learning. The process starts with a doodle on paper. I am then photographing it. Next, I import the drawing directly into Procreate and then traced it manually. Found that method very unsatisfying. The surface of the iPad is so slick, and slowing down to trace accurately the lines looked slow. So finally, I fell on a method that seemed to do the job. First, I photograph. Then import them into Affinity Photo 2, create a file with an alpha, and export them as a png. Then bring the drawing into Procreate. It seems to work better for me.
The reason I like this method is that it allows me to concentrate on color. I can apply color and experience color combinations quickly. I knew that color exists and reacts with its environment or relative to the surroundings and background. But working and being able to apply color quickly and easily replacing color with another underscores for me how dynamic color is.
As I work, I am finding a spiritual connection with the known-unknown. I am sure that sounds strange to some. It is a meditative practice, not intentional, but it seems more of a by-product that I welcome.
“Every work of art is a culturescape of you, your memories, the moments you spent working, your hopes, energies, and neuroses, the times you live in, and your ambitions. Of the things that are engaging, mysterious, meaningful, resistant over time.”
― Jerry Saltz, How to Be an Artist
Finally, I got a gallery set up. I have to explore more because I am still determining if the plug-in NextGen Gallery is worth it.
I am reading Jerry Saltz’s book—Art is Life. I like it. He is very entertaining. I am unsure if I like him, but he speaks his mind. He seems to have compassion too. So I guess I do. But he would be a challenge, I think.
Loved his story of himself laying down the idea of being an artist. He speaks of creating art… akin to meditation and communing with the unknown. His question about … Is There Great Art on Instagram?I appreciated that he seemed to honor all the artists working… discovering… exploring… and most of all, creating art as an unknown but still creating.
Then this article/chapter—Iconoclasm Now: Charlie Hebdo and the Lethal Power of Art. That chapter was a show-stopper for me; as a Quaker and even as a young man, I believed that what I created on paper, sculpted, and images I made, I breathed life into the work. So whether it is seen or unseen, it has life cause it was/is a part of me. He didn’t go there exactly, but when he spoke about the image breakers that believed the images that “the thing itself and, as made not by God, they contain demonic spirits.” So I identified with that some people believe similarly about an image as I do—the demonic bit … not so much. But as a Quaker, there is the “Light of God” within the work.
The short of it, I am learning a lot, and Mr. Saltz’s book is good. It is approachable and entertaining.
After graduation, I was ready to launch a career as a full-time artist. MCAD prepared me well by providing me with great instructors and an environment.
Still, after graduation, I immersed myself in design, typography, the web, HTML, CSS, and associated software for the next 10-12 years for my students and job. I retired from teaching last year, and although the wonderful education MCAD provided. It was apparent; I needed to work where I left off after completing my MFA. So I am sharing and documenting my journey. Mainly for me.
Hey, did you hear the joke, “What do the acronyms BFA and MFA stand for?
Answer: BFA stands for big f—ing attitude and MFA for major f—ing attitude.” I know it is an old joke.
Anyway, I added one new category in the sidebar titled, Inspirational and Technically Instructional–YouTube Channels. These sites, amongst others, re-educated and reminded me of some of the skills I lost.
What I saw before me was the critic-in-chief The New York Times saying: In looking at a painting today, “to lack, a persuasive theory is to lack something crucial.” I read it again. It didn’t say “something helpful” or “enriching” or even “extremely valuable.” No, the word was “crucial.”
The quote above was written in response to an article in the New York Times, on Sunday, April 28, 1974, by art critic Hilton Kramer.
This blog is a journal of sorts, featuring my artwork and my ideas about art as I understand it. After 67 years of living, I now get to start practicing what I believe I am meant to do. That is to do art.
As I work, read, and reacquaint myself with myself through my art and studies, I seek a theory of me. It is becoming more and more apparent that I am emerging both intellectually and spiritually through my art.
I have never been keen on the significant art pubs or the art critics. Only because, through big words and lengthy explanation of what they see or how they interpret, the work often shuts out, divides, or disqualifies the everyday joe or mary from viewing, collecting, and enjoying art.
I guess part of objecting to the art authoritarians is that I never felt like I fit in being a blue-collar Catholic boy that is gay, not queer, dyslectic, alcoholic, and Quaker. So I often had to forge my own beliefs and codes of conduct.
That being said, I do believe there has to be some theory, some idea, path, or journey the casual viewer might need to understand my work or any artwork better.
Although, Wolfe is critical of Kramers’s reference to the “crucial” need for a perspective theory. Wolfe doesn’t say no knowledge is necessary. Thus every artist usually provides an artist statement for the viewer and gallery visitors.
I guess Artchangeslives(dot)com is where I work to find the theory of Bill.