Sunday, August 19, 2007

19th August 2007: Who's made a mark this week?

Building your website
copyright Charley Parker

This week seems to have a bit of an art materials and media flavour to it. I'm kicking off with a topic which is a perennial favourite - and finishing with some proud horn tooting for members of my cyber buddy group Fine Line Artists......and don't rush - there's lots of goodies inbetween!

How to display your art on the web

Charley Parker (of the excellent and popular art/illustration blog Lines and Colors) has started a series "How to Display Your Art on the Web" as a follow up to his excellent post on How NOT to display your work on your website which generated many comments.

Charley knows what he is talking about - he's a webcomics artist, cartoonist, illustrator, web site designer and Flash animator and teaches a class in Macromedia Flash at the Delaware College of Art and Design.

The first three blog posts of the new series are all excellent and are:
I'd say these were a 'must read' for anybody contemplating developing a website and a jolly good reminder for those of us who have already ventured forth of some of the things we can maybe improve and/or add in to the mix.

Here also is a reminder of my take on the topic last year in my non-techie blog post "How to annoy me with your website" and the update which summarises the comments it generated.

  • Karen Jurick (A Painting Today) let us know recently that she very much admires Margaret Dyer - and I have to say I very much concur with Karen's very good taste. Margaret works in pastels and I can well understand why Karen likes her if you take a peek at her website, her blog and e-bay store. Makes me want to get my pastels out again! Another artist who works in a not dissimilar way is Sally Strand who I'm a great fan of.
  • My mate Ed Terpening was featured on Lines and Colors on Thursday last week. It's always really good to read Charley's take on an artist and even better when it's somebody who you like.
  • Vivien Blackburn (website/blog) talked this week about doing a fine art degree as a mature student (she'll be very proud granny in under a month) and what she got out of it. Read more about her language of painting and more about her degree course here. One for a few people to ponder maybe?
  • I came across a Chinese artist called Zhaoming Wu with a book I'd get if the text was in English - my favourites are his landscapes - which are sublime - and his charcoal drawings. The latter are very beautiful and amply demonstrate why 'less is more' and realism without every last detail can be so very attractive. Somebody find him a translater and offer him a book deal please!
Art materials
I've been very disappointed, over the long haul, in the Daniel Smith mineral-based paints. Looking back at my Paris sketchbook (which you see in today's photo), I note a LOT of color fading. I'm not happy. Minnesota Pipestone, zoisite, and blue ochre are the most ephemeral of those I used. Kyanite's fine.
  • Jana Bouc Jana Bouc is using copic markers for value thumbnail sketches - and illustrates how she did this as a preliminary to an oil sketch in this post (Note: The introduction to the copic marker website in the link is totally OTT!)
Art Journals and media coverage
Taking Risks, RWS Autumn Exhibition
Thu 11-Oct-2007 to Sun 11-Nov-2007

Members of the Royal Watercolour Society experiment with watercolour to its maximum effect from the figurative to abstraction. Fluidity, colour and the brilliance of the medium will be explored through themes of landscape, the figure and still life.
  • I don't know when International Artist got its new website - but it now lists on the front page all the competitions that it runs on a regular basis. Entry to "People and Figures" closes on 19th September and that is followed by ones for Landscapes, Flowers and Gardens, Seascapes, Rivers and Lakes and Favourite Subjects.
  • I see USA finally caught up with small works and blog art last Sunday.
...and finally,

Felicitations are due to two of my fellow Fine Line Artists who have gained some media attention of a different variety.
  • Wendy Prior lives in Christchurch New Zealand and specialises in wildlife and animal art. She's also recently been involved with the development of "Prints of Darkness" a film about the Canterbury Black Cat. This is a very large black cat which has been sighted but never caught. Given the lack of any really good images Wendy produced a painting of the cat based on descriptions for the project which recently sold at auction for a large sum of money. On 22nd August, the popular NZ TV programme Good Morning, will be featuring the Canterbury Black Cat on their " Whats up DOC?" segment with Nic Vallance . This will be looking into curious species of New Zealand Wildlife. Some shots from the film will be shown including one featuring Wendy's Canterbury Black Cat Painting. You can see more about the project, the film and the painting on Wendy's website and her blog where the giant cat (featured last week) continues to progress.
  • Well somebody had to take over from JK Rowling - and I'm very pleased to announce that Maggie Stiefvater (website/blog) is now the proud owner of a contractual commitment to publish her first novel next Autumn/Fall 2008. Dedicated readers of Maggie's blog already know this of course.
    • The publishers are Flux Now, an imprint of Llewellyn Worldwide which is dedicated to Young Adult fiction (12 -18 years old).
    • The book itself is an Urban Fantasy / Contemporary Fantasy (ie that means it's set in the real world) about a musically talented high school girl who is attracted to a soulless fairy assassin, not realizing that she's his next mark (Maggie tells me it's very far from being a formula romance!).
    • Advanced review copies are going to be sent out January/February and it should be possible to pre-order it from Amazon around February/March time. Flux are VERY excited about it - and are planning accordingly..........
    • In the meantime, Maggie has lost no time in following her Editor's advice and has started to think about the business end and marketing and has started a second blog. So everybody with novel writing aspirations or teenagers with a liking for fantasy better get on over to "Words on Words" in which she will write about writing, folklore and her new novel.
I told you it was exciting. It's also a jolly good thing it all happened before her computer crashed last week and the hard drive was declared to be toast......I'm sure Charley will be covering data back-up in a future post!


Maggie Stiefvater said...

Thanks for the mention, Katherine! I'm really excited about it . . . okay, I'm lying. I'm REALLY EXCITED about it. :D

Ed Terpening said...

Thanks, Katherine for listing Charlie Parker's post on how not to display your artwork online. It had my laughing out loud, which means of course it was filled with truths we've all experienced! Terrific information.

Jana Bouc said...

Phew! Three hours later and I've made it through just this one post! So much wonderful art, exciting news, and interesting links to follow. I was so happy to see the link to Karen Jurick's website and blog. I admire her work tremendously and I so enjoyed seeing her painting in progress video and reading a little about her background and success. I've printed out Charlie's Planning a Website column too. Very helpful stuff!

Katherine said...

Thanks folks

I've updated the post to include the 4th post in Charley's series which he posted yesterday

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