Art Gab - learning the ropes
August 20,2009

No, I didn't fall off the face of the earth...I developed a severe back problem which lasted quite a few days... probably wasn't helped by painting...doing much better today. I did get the chance to think about goals and even read most of Ian Roberts book on Mastering came complete with a DVD which walks you through his various paintings showing the Armature (or movement) in each. He achieves this with Photoshop or something similar which subtly changes color, softens edges and so forth and trains the eye to follow these changes throughout the presentation. He demonstrates with shapes and patterns, a way to have the eyes move into the painting and remain there instead of leading the viewer off the canvas. He achieves this with contrasting light and dark values, variation in hues, intensity, soft and hard edges, brush strokes, placement of abstract shapes. He also demonstrates what makes makes a painting aesthetically desireable by using a 'sweet spot' on the canvas, not unlike term used when a golf ball is hit in exactly the right spot. This sweet spot is often called the GOLDEN MEAN, RATIO or SECTION (to name a few). The MASTERS were well studied in these dynamics and while their works were far more complex, the same basic understanding of structure is still required for a successful painting today. I recommend Ian Roberts material, he's easy to listen to and understand. In fact I just ordered his next DVD set as well as his Plein Air Painting DVD's and I'll let you know if I give those a thumbs up once I've studied them! Last week I attended a three day workshop with Ken Campbell. I saw his paintings online and immediately knew that I wanted to attend. He was painting in a similar style to the way I was already painting and I knew that he could fine tune anything I was doing. It was an awesome experience. He was also describing the 'sweet spot' on the canvas and since I'm not a mathematician and struggle with that left part of my brain...he gave me an easy method of finding it the Golden Ration. Basically measure 62% from the edge of the side of the canvas and mark a spot...then measure 62% from the top or the bottom of the canvas and mark that spot too. Where those two dots the sweet spot. I've also been learning that there are certain instances where artists will ignore the sweet spot purposely in order to create 'tension' in their work...pretty interesting stuff. I will write more about what I learned during the Ken Campbell seminar in my next blog...lots of great ideas...oh yeah...and my goal date to get into a gallery is...stay tuned...

Posted by Sandra Van Den Ham at 05:07 0 Comments
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August 14,2009

A lovely lady, fellow artist and teacher, Wendy Neilson is a new contact I've met through my website. She's sharing information with me on this journey and giving me some awesome feedback. Yesterday she sent me this website. -Portfolio This site is loaded with information. I've only had a chance to peek at it but I did read about how to provide a professional portfolio to a gallery and again the adage "First Impressions are Lasting" and "put your best foot forward the first time" hold true. A few months ago I attended a workshop at the Vertigo Gallery in Vernon where I had my work critiqued by Briar Craig from the UBC Art Department. I later attended another workshop which outlined 'how to create' a professional portfolio including a Curriculum Vitae and Resume and methods to keep track of my digital pictures, documenting my work, labelling and much more. As I review my notes I will be able to share highlights from these courses. Very worthwhile information was shared and I'd recommend it to anyone who can attend. If you'd like more information similar courses, contact Judith Jurica at the Vertigo Gallery to get on the email list of upcoming events. They really support local artists. What did I do yesterday...well...I have been giving serious consideration to a 'goal deadline date' for getting my work into a gallery. I am considering a 1 year deadline...but thinking that 2 years might be more realistic given the other things I am involved in...#1 being a mom (skating, swimming, soccer, cello, get the picture... #2 being a good partner #3 running the household...helping with renos...especially my new art studio :) #4 learning the ropes about the art world #5 honing my artistic skills and making time to paint #6 entering local shows and FCA events #7 teaching my PAINTING MADE EASY classes...which ultimately make my new the skills I'm learning become second nature to me #8 time for myself...why is that always last on the list LOL...:) I'm breaking it down to a daily task so I don't feel overwhelmed...starting with reading a great book by Ian Roberts on Mastering Composition and actually following exercises and watching his videos on armature, composition and the like...stay tuned and I'll give you my opinion on the lessons...

Posted by Sandra Van Den Ham at 03:04 1 Comments
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August 13,2009

Just saw Julia Julia at the theatre last week…oh my…it gave me the idea that I too could set a goal for something I really want to achieve and blog daily to keep me on track…and in the interim perhaps share information that will help another artist out there find her way to the gallery…a little intimidating to say the least...I'm ready to commit to do whatever it takes to get there...learn the ropes and get on the band wagon. So if you want to grab onto the dream yourself and be a part of this journey you're welcome to join me. I'm going to learn what it takes to become a consistent consciously competent artist and find my way to the gallery…step by step...stay tuned...

Posted by Sandra Van Den Ham at 05:09 2 Comments
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