Cities By Sea

There’s something about entering a city by water that can’t be beat. This summer, I took a couple trips between Vancouver and Victoria, BC. If you’re out west, you should too.

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Three Great Art Books

I love books on art and I try to read as many of them as I can. Of all the art books I’ve read over the years, here are three of my favorites. This list will probably keep growing.

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The three books below were chosen, in part, for their accessibility. The older I get, the less patience I have for academic writing:

The Artist’s Mentor, Ian Jackman

This simple book contains inspirational quotes from a wide variety of artists on various parts of the creative process. It’s a quick and unassuming book that I re-read every couple of years.

The Story of Art, E.H. Gombrich

This very long book covers a ton of material, but it does so in a very easy to read and navigate format. Basically, every period of art, from cave to modern is given a quick recap in about ten or so pages. It’s easy to read a chapter before bed.

Art/Work, Heather Darcy Bhandari & Jonathan Melber

There are many books that can help you navigate the business aspects of your art practice. I’ve found this one to be a helpful point of reference.

The Square: A Review

This past Saturday, after working on my art for most of the day, I finished up, and watched a movie about the art world. Here is a very quick review of The Square.

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I recently watched the film The Square. Here are some quick thoughts:

I like just about anything that critiques the art world (in part because it is so foreign to me), so I had been looking forward to seeing The Square for a while. If, like me, it’s a critique you’re looking for, this film is for you – it pulls no punches.

Overall, I liked this movie. I thought it was a bit-long, and at times slow, but when it picks up, it really nails it. Two scenes in particular, the performance (in the photo above), and the press conference near the end of the film are exceptional.

I really don’t want to give too much away, and I promised a very short review, so, if you like artsy films about art, this one’s worth checking out.

Sometimes Life Gets in the Way

Making art is fun, fulfilling, and cathartic, but in my case, it doesn’t pay the bills. Like many an artist, I have a day job, and sometimes, it keeps me away from the studio.

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If I could do anything, I’d make art full time, but as I live in the real world, I have to work full time. That’s okay. I’ve managed to balance the two quite well – and am generally happy to do so.

That said, working for a living often comes with it’s own challenges, and in my case, requires a little re-invention from time to time. Working in a field ripe for automation, I recently went back to school, and after completing a course in Project Management, decided to write the CAPM (Certified Associate in Project Management) exam.

The exam was a huge challenge. Rather than working on art in my spare time, I put all my supplies away, and studied every day for nearly three months (1-3 hours a day during the week, and 6-7 hours a day on weekends). I’m happy to say, I passed on my first attempt.

While I still have a lot of work to do putting the certification to use, the challenge it posed was an excellent experience. It worked my brain in ways that hadn’t been worked in a while (if ever), boosted my confidence, and gave me a sense of control over my future. The fundamentals of project management will probably help a lot when it comes to the business aspects of my art as well.

What did I do with my first study free weekend? I worked on my art.

The Classics

I’ve been super busy lately and haven’t been able to post as much as I’d like. For this weeks post, here are some of the classics I’ve shared through the course of this blog.

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Francisco Goya, The Third of May

ABOVE: Francisco Goya, The Third of May 1808, 1814, oil on canvas, 106 x 137 inches

Eugène Delacroix, Liberty Leading the People

ABOVE: Eugene Delacroix, Liberty Leading the People, 1830, oil on canvas, 102 x 128 inches

 

Rembrandt, The Night Watch

ABOVE: Rembrandt van Rijn, The Night Watch, 1642, oil on canvas, 142 x 172 inches

Rene Magritte, The Treachery of Images

ABOVE: Rene Magritte, The Treachery of Images, 1929, oil on canvas, 23 x 31 inches

Salvador Dali, The Persistence of Memory

ABOVE: Salvador Dali, The Persistence of Memory, 1931, oil on canvas, 9.5 x 13 inches

J.M.W. Turner, The Slave Ship

ABOVE: J.M.W. Turner, Slavers Throwing overboard the Dead and Dying – Typhoon coming on, 1840, oil on canvas, 35.7 x 48.3 inches

Pablo Picasso, Les Demoiselles d’Avignon

ABOVE: Pablo Picasso, Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, 1907, oil on canvas, 96 x 92 inches

Grant Wood, American Gothic

ABOVE: Grant Wood, American Gothic, 1930, oil on beaverboard, 30 x 52 inches

Vincent Van Gogh, Starry Night

ABOVE: Vincent van Gogh, The Starry Night, 1889, oil on canvas, 28.7 x 36 inches

Edward Hopper, Nighthawks

ABOVE: Edward Hopper, Nighthawks, 1942, oil on canvas, 33.1 x 60 inches

Georges-Pierre Seurat, Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte

ABOVE: Georges-Pierre Seurat, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte, 1884-1886, oil on canvas, 81.7 x 121.25 inches

 

Dumb Art Jokes – Part 2

From the kinda cheesy to the kinda dirty, I love jokes. That said, here are a few art related ones I recently came across in a quick web search. Mostly cheesy.

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ABOVE: Richard Prince, I Changed My Name, 1988, acrylic and silkscreen on canvas, 56 x 78.5 inches

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Q: What does a momma color wheel say to a baby color wheel?

A: Don’t use that tone with me.

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Q: How does Salvador Dali start his mornings?

A: With a bowl of “Surreal”

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A bumper sticker for artists: “My other car is a bike, too.”

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There was this world famous painter. In the prime of her career, she started losing her eyesight. Fearful that she might lose her life as a painter, she went to see the best eye surgeon in the world.

After several weeks of delicate surgery and therapy, her eyesight was restored. The painter was so grateful that she decided to show her gratitude by repainting the doctor’s office.

Part of her work included painting a gigantic eye on one wall. When she had finished her work, she held a press conference to unveil her latest work of art: the doctor’s office.

During the press conference, one reporter noticed the eye on the wall, and asked the doctor, “What was your first reaction upon seeing your newly painted office, especially that large eye on the wall?”

To this, the eye doctor responded, “I said to myself ‘Thank God I’m not a proctologist.'”

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Went to an M.C. Escher exhibition today. All the best prints were on the second floor but unfortunately I couldn’t get there.

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Q: What do you call an artist with asthma?

A: Van Cough