Matisse believed the invention of the camera relieved the artist of the burden of reproducing subject matter exactly--that the artist, from that point on, had full license, if not an obligation, to interpret. When viewing Michael Ward's work, I can't help but think of Matisse's words, because it seems that many artists who paint in a similar style become so engrossed in the task of replication that little is left for interpretation. Michael "records" his images quite faithfully, but also captures a special energy--a sense of lively activity, vitality and movement--which imbues his work with emotion and depth, creating art that is so much more than a likeness. Enjoy!
Good writing is often defined by how many words are NOT used. Similarly, excellent art often conveys its story through simplicity. Kolb is so good at what she does. Her minimalist images speak legions. It's as if her characters have been just standing there, waiting, to tell you their stories. Click on the link and say hello.
Originator of "Creative Thursday", Marisa Haedike is a genius. Her little creatures are expressive and charming and Marisa continually invents new ways for her collectors to enjoy them. In addition to a delicious, ever-increasing product line, she is truly the grand master of marketing in today's internet-driven marketplace. Even though she was kind enough to let me buy her lunch in order to pick her brain for a few hours, I still am not sure how she gets it all done. My hat is off to her for all that she's able to accomplish. Take a look!
Nigel Cox is such a great artist, he freaks me out. We email now and then, and he says he loves a good challenge--the more difficult, the happier he is. Take a look at his "Black Basque" to the left. Look closely. Look at the action, her movement, her sensuality, those great red high heels, the flounce of the dark dress with a kiss of petticoat. Without even seeing her face, we can see that she is beautiful, mysterious, full of life. Take a look at his many reclining figures. He is a master of foreshortening. How do you do it, Nigel? Please look and linger a while ... and read about his experience circumnavigating the globe with the Transglobe Expedition.
This man is a trip! I happen to love his work and am greatly inspired by it, but whether you like his work or not, one spin around his website and you'll have to admit, that man is a free spirit, living life to the fullest! Be sure to check out his video of him painting to music. He was kind enough to respond to my email praising his work. He generously spent time looking at my website and offered excellent opinions! Now, click on his link, and go for a ride! Don't forget the Dramamine!
Oh, to be able to paint like Alex Kanevsky. He is either blessed with, or has worked like a dog to acquire, that loose, yet disciplined, wrist that all artists desire. It's simply hard to imagine how he pulled off "Poker Game at St. Patrick Schoolhouse" which is ... get this ... 9.5" x 61". The perspective, depth and angles are hard to describe. He seems to love the bath, the human nude presented realistically, and dots and dashes of hum-drum life presented with overwhelming beauty, all expressed in a gentle palette sparked with red. Take a peek into his perspective on life.
Here it is again ... that loose, disciplined wrist that is every artist's dream. Every time I look at Parasnis's work, I see something new. A new angle, a new shadow, an unexpected scrumble or highlight. Angles look slightly akimbo, which serves to draw the viewer in deeper. Intense, yet gentle, colors often conveying a sense of heat. Just lovely!
Christy Rogers' work is quite beautiful. In her most recent Siren collection, Christy uses the unpredictability of water to capture dream-like portraits of the female body. Each image is created in-camera as the result of careful experimentation between photographer, subject and the elements of light, water and movement.
Qiang Huang is part of the Daily Painting craze, but I believe heads above most. What is particularly gratifying is to go way back to some of his earlier paintings, and look at his progress. He was always top notch by my estimation, but I've learned so very much from watching him learn how to make them even better. And, as he mentions on his blog, he is always looking for new techniques, materials, and approaches to creating breath-taking pieces. It doesn't get much better!
David Foughts is a sculptor who is quoted on his website as saying "I love to stare." I do too, David. At your beautiful objects. His work was introduced to me via a woman who paired his work and mine in a virtual presentation for completion of her Masters in Fine Arts. His work is dramatic and commanding. From Fought's artist statement: "Utilizing line, mass, surface, and shadow, as well as placement within a particular room or space, I strive to discover a synergy in the object. When a zenith of sculptural elements is reached the sculpture visually hums." And they do hum ... and hum ...
This video shows the winner of " Ukraine’s Got Talent", Kseniya Simonova, 24, drawing a series of pictures on an illuminated sand table showing how ordinary people were affected by the German invasion during World War II. Her talent, which admittedly is a strange one, is mesmeric to watch.
The images, projected onto a large screen, moved many in the audience to tears and she won the top prize of about £75,000.
She begins by creating a scene showing a couple sitting holding hands on a bench under a starry sky, but then warplanes appear and the happy scene is obliterated.
It is replaced by a woman’s face crying, but then a baby arrives and the woman smiles again. Once again war returns and Miss Simonova throws the sand into chaos from which a young woman’s face appears.
She quickly becomes an old widow, her face wrinkled and sad, before the image turns into a monument to an Unknown Soldier.
This outdoor scene becomes framed by a window as if the viewer is looking out on the monument from within a house.
In the final scene, a mother and child appear inside and a man standing outside, with his hands pressed against the glass, saying goodbye..
The Great Patriotic War, as it is called in Ukraine, resulted in one in four of the population being killed with eight to 11 million deaths out of a population of 42 million.
Kseniya Simonova says:
"I find it difficult enough to create art using paper and pencils or paintbrushes, but using sand and fingers is beyond me. The art, especially when the war is used as the subject matter, even brings some audience members to tears. And there’s surely no bigger compliment."
Chad Robertson has an intense viewpoint of life, it seems, if one assesses him by looking at what he puts out in a painting. Here's a quote from an L.A. Times review entitled "Zombies Get Caught In the Act." "Robertson's past work started with videotaped interviews from which he plucked frames revealing the subjects' emotion through facial expression. ... The strongest of Robertson's paintings, particularly his group compositions, benefit from more narrative implication and a more studied and exploited consideration of bodies moving against gravity and inertia." Oh yeah, baby. Take a look. Looking through press on Robertson reveals mixed reviews, I believe, due to reviewers tearing apart his concept to meet their own needs. My take on Robertson's work is Wow! Holy Zombies! How on earth does he do that? How does he get all those stop-frames "recorded" with such energy and action and, discontinuous fluidity?
You gotta love someone who has an entire segment in his body of work devoted to cows. Not just cow-cows, but Cows You'd Love to Know! Really. That's not the only thing Bradford Salamon does well. His work is delightful and beautiful. All of it. Every-growing, ever-expanding, compelling, jumps off the canvas. I learned of his work through his brother, Guy Salamon, who runs the best framing shop in the West--in Fountain Valley, CA. Look him up too!