Those who are not conversant in works of art are often surprised at the high value set by connoisseurs on drawings which appear careless, and in every respect unfinished; but they are truly valuable... they give the idea of a whole.
- Sir Joshua Reynolds
We do not see things as they are, we see them as we are.
- Anais Nin


Monday, February 20, 2012

Matt Smith

Posted by Charley Parker at 4:30 pm

Matt Smith
Arizona artist Matt Smith paints en plein air in locations across the Western U.S.

Smith studied in the Fine Arts program of Arizona State University, but somewhat disenchanted with the abstract emphasis of the program, pursued independent study of American Western artists like Maynard Dixon, William Herbert Dunton, and Edgar Payne. Smith has also studied with contemporary artists Michael Lynch, James Reynolds and Clyde Aspevig.

Smith finds particular fascination in the craggy, intricate forms of wind sculpted rocks, weatherbeaten trees and other highly textural aspects of natural erosion. He approaches these with a controlled palette accented with higher chroma passages, and deft handling of light and shadow.

Smith teaches for several weeks out of the year, and conducts workshops at the Tuscon Art Academy. There is a brief video of a 2011 workshop on YouTube.

He also offers three location painting DVD’s on his site.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Royalists to Romantics

Posted by Charley Parker at 12:14 am

Painting as Paris Burned: Constance Mayer, Antoinette Cecile Hortense, Adrienne Marie Louise Grandpierre-Deverzy, Rose Adelaide Ducreux, Adelaide Labille-Guiard

Royalists to Romantics: Women Artists from the Louvre, Versailles, and Other French National Collections is an exhibition at the National Museum for Women in the Arts in Washington, DC that offers a chance to view paintings from European collections by women artist who were active from 1750 to 1850.

Unfortunately, the museum’s website doesn’t feature a preview, but Salon has both a review and preview slideshow. The artists bear further investigation should you care to research them on the internet (particularly Élisabeth Louise Vigée-Lebrun and Constance Mayer, two favorites of mine that I have not yet featured on Lines and Colors).

Royalists to Romantics is on display until July 29, 2012. There is a catalog accompanying the exhibition.

(Images above: Constance Mayer, Antoinette Cécile Hortense, Adrienne Marie Louise Grandpierre-Deverzy, Rose Adélaïde Ducreux, Adélaïde Labille-Guiard)

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Train and SINCE… by Cyril Calgaro

Posted by Charley Parker at 11:19 pm

Train and Since by Cyril Calgaro
Two very short animations by Cyril Calgaro.

The Train (images above, top two) is devoted to the painter Mondrian’s simplification of forms.

SINCE… is a mini essay on the history of communication, told in animated icons.

[Via Parka Blogs]

Posted in: Animation   |   Comments »

Friday, February 17, 2012

The Museum of Forgotten Art Supplies

Posted by Charley Parker at 10:10 am

The Museum of Forgotten Art Supplies
Bittersweet nostalgia; and/or my attic and basement…

[Via Dave Gibbons]

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Sean Cheetham (update)

Posted by Charley Parker at 8:20 pm

Sean Cheetham
Since writing a post about portraitist and figurative artist Sean Cheetham in 2008, I still know little more about him than I did then, which wasn’t much.

Still, I’ve gathered what additional resources I can for an update post. His direct, uncompromising portraits have a wonderful sense of presence and personality, as well as a painterly surface and strong compositions.

Cheetham’s website seems largely abandoned in that its single page is linked to a gallery that is a lapsed domain name.

However, his blog, though infrequently updated, has some new work, and his paintings are currently on exhibit in a show at the Katherine Cone Gallery in Los Angeles that runs until March 10, 2012.

In addition there are a couple of time-lapse videos of Cheetham giving portrait demonstrations on YouTube here and here.

Cheetham is an instructor at the Los Angeles Academy of Figurative Art and there is a brief bio and gallery on their site.

There is also an article on Painting Perceptions and another on Artist Daily with a gallery.

Felicity House

Posted by Charley Parker at 10:36 am

Felicity House
I’ve commented previously on the interesting place that pastel has in the range of art media. Though dry, and therefore technically a “drawing” medium, pastel can have almost all of the qualities of painting.

Felicity House is an English artist who uses pastel in a way that is simultaneously drawing and painting, with a lively expressive quality of line and a beautiful play of light, color and shadow.

House works directly on location. Her website features galleries of her work in landscape, still life and figures, along with travel sketches. In particular, I enjoyed the pieces in the section for “Interiors”.

There is a kind of visual charm that can be expressed in line that is difficult to achieve in more straightforward painting, and approaches like hers are notable for that combination of effects (a reason that I also often like the visual appeal of pen and watercolor, or colored woodblock prints).

House also works in watercolor, charcoal and oil and teaches courses in several mediums.

[Via Katherine Tyrrell's Making a Mark]

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

John Severin 1921-2012

Posted by Charley Parker at 2:05 pm

John Severin
John Severin was an excellent and underappreciated comics artist whose career spanned a good part of the 20th century and into the 21st.

Severin was prolific during his long career, and though he never developed the devoted following of flashier artists (except among a discerning few), he produced consistently high-level work for a variety of publications.

He held his own among comics legends like Wally Wood, Will Elder and Jack Davis as part of the core group of artists working with Harvey Kurtzman on the original, insanely terrific Mad comics (which eventually devolved into the pale shadow Mad Magazine as we know it).

He worked on other EC titles, notably for the western and war comics Two-Fisted Tales and Frontline Combat, where his solid draftsmanship and superb command of texture served the stories well.

He worked for Marvel, DC, Dark Horse, Warren and other publishers, as well as Mad Magazine competitor Cracked.

He is particularly known for his work, often in collaboration with his sister Marie Severin, on the Marvel sword and sorcery title King Kull.

John Severin died on February 12, 2012 at the age on 90. I’ve listed some obits and tributes below, many of which have artwork.

There is a 1999 interview with Severin on The Comics Journal.

Posted in: Comics   |   3 Comments »

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Tang Yin (Tang Bohu)

Posted by Charley Parker at 11:07 pm

Tang Yin (Tang Bohu)
Ming Dynasty Chinese painter Tang Yin (also known as Tang Bohu) painted figures, notably women, as well as birds and small details of blossoms and branches, but I find him most interesting for his beautifully dramatic landscapes.

Tang Yin was active in the 16th century and was one of the foremost painters of his era, called the middle Ming period. He revisited and revitalized painting elements from previous times, and was a calligrapher, scholar and poet in addition to being a popular painter.

Born into a low level merchant class family, his scholarly talent and drive were preparing him for a prized civil service position, but a scandal in which he and a friend were accused of bribing one of the civil service examiners prior to their exams removed that option and led him to earn a living selling his paintings.

There is a book on his life and work, with 100 plates: The Painting of T’ang Yin (more here), though it’s not inexpensive.

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