Sketching St. Louis – Michael Anderson

Sketching St. Louis - Michael Anderson
Sketching St. Louis is a sketchblog about just that.

Artist and illustrator Michael Anderson found his inspiration for the blog from a workshop he led in 2009 called Sketching St Louis, in which he carried forward the approach found in the Urban Sketchers blog.

Anderson’s sketches of various subjects in and around St. Louis are done primarily in pen and watercolor, and occasionally digitally on an iPad. You can see him working as the subject of a video by Joel Anderson called Urban Sketching.

Though he mentions Urban Sketchers more than once, he doesn’t appear to be a contributor to that blog as far as I can determine, but does contribute to the Flickr pool.

Anderson also has his own Flickr stream.

You can see more of Anderson’s professional and personal work, including architectural illustration and plein air paintings, on his website.


Justin Gerard and Jeremy Enecio at Gallery Nucleus

Justin Gerard and Jeremy Enecio at Gallery Nucleus
Gallery Nucleus in Alhambra, California has two new shows that showcase the work of Justin Gerard, who I featured in 2009, and Jeremy Enecio, who I wrote about in 2010.

St. George and the Dragon by Justin Gerard (gallery of works here) and Embodiments by Jeremy Enecio (gallery of works here) run until August 29, 2011.

You can also visit the artists’ websites: Justin Gerard (note: plays unasked-for music that can’t be turned off) and Jeremy Enecio.

[Note: some works in galleries should be considered NSFW]

(Images above, top two: Justin Gerard, bottom two: Jeremy Enecio)


18th Century pastel portraits at the Met

Pastel Portraits: Images of 18th Century Europe - Jean Baptiste Siméon Chardin, Maurice Quentin de La Tour, Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun, Jean Baptiste Claude Richard, Adélaïde Labille-Guiard
Pastel is a fascinating medium, the use of which crosses the boundaries of what we think of as drawing and painting, and calls into question how we define and distinguish the two.

In an exhibition currently at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC, we can see pastel displaying its qualities that bring it close to oil painting, with a few rougher treatments that start to lean more toward the textures and linear qualities we associate with drawing.

Pastel Portraits: Images of 18th Century Europe showcases some of the finest practitioners of the medium, with a range of portraits both formal and informal.

Some of them, like Chardin’s Head of an Old Man (images above, top) and Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun’s beautiful Self-Portrait (above, 3rd down) show the visual charm of pastel when used for both its painterly and linear qualities in the same image.

There is a gallery of images from the show in the Met’s site, along with a permanent feature on the Met’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History on the same subject, that also contains a gallery of works.

In addition there is an article by conservator Majorie Shelley, Eighteenth-Century Pastel Portraits: Notes on their Rising Popularity, Materials, Techniques, and Preservation, that delves into the nature of pastel and the difficulty in preserving these relatively delicate works, as well as notes on the practice of pastel portraiture in the period.

Pastel Portraits: Images of 18th Century Europe in on view at the Met until August 14, 2011

(Images above Jean Baptiste Siméon Chardin, Maurice Quentin de La Tour, Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun, Jean Baptiste Claude Richard, Adélaïde Labille-Guiard)


Ken Reid’s World Wide Weirdies

Ken Reid's World Wide Weirdies
Ken Reid was a British comics artist who worked in newspaper comics in the middle of the 20th Century and later moved into working for comic books, notably for The Beano.

He is probably best remembered now for his later series of comically horror-themed posters called World Wide Weirdies that ran in a publication called Whoopee!.

These were often intricately detailed (the small reproductions here don’t do them justice) and wonderfully grotesque; as well as frequently quite funny. They were based on puns or other naming suggestions submitted by readers. Reid drew them in a circular frame surrounded by smaller drawings of oddball characters, of which there were at least two sets.

There is an extensive Flicker set of Reid’s World Wide Weirdies, as well as other articles and mentions that I’ll try to list below.

[Via BoingBoing]


The Chemistry of Oil Painting on Symbiartic

The Chemistry of Oil Painting on Symbiartic - Glendon Mellow
Artist and illustrator Glenton Mellow, who writes the Flying Trilobite blog, also co-authors a new blog for Scientific American called Symbiartic, along with scientific illustrator Kalliopi Monoyios.

The tagline for Symbiartic is “The art of science and the science of art”, and topics range freely across that nebulous and fascinating intersection.

In a recent post Mellow gives a nicely succinct overview of The Chemistry of Oil Painting, with a bit of history, discussions of the principal types of oil used and a mention of artistic concerns such as glazing and “fat over lean”.

You can find more of Glendon Mellow’s writing and artwork on The Flying Trilobite and his website.


Antoino Gaudi documentary

Antoino Gaudi documentary
It is often said that architecture is a form of sculpture.

At its worst, this means that many of our cities are chock-a-block with horribly soulless and mind-numbingly boring modernist sculpture that we would be hard pressed to think of as art.

On the other hand, perhaps the most obvious and beautiful manifestation of this idea is the work of the remarkable Catalan architect Atoni Gaudí, also known as Antonio Gaudí, whose overtly sculptural buildings are shaped with Art Nouveau grace and leap into the sky with surreal incongruity to the everyday structures around them.

Someone has posted a beautiful 1984 documentary by Hiroshi Tesigahara titled Antoinio Gaudi to YouTube. The film is a little over an hour long and is in large part simply music and scenes in which the camera lingers lovingly on the details of Gaudí’s amazing buildings, so language is not a barrier.

The film is available on Amazon as Antonio Gaudí: The Criterion Collection.

For more on Gaudí, see my previous post on Antoni Gaudí.

[Via MetaFilter]