Paintings by Shirley Trevena RII felt like I was getting a tonic when I went to see the 198th Exhibition of the Royal Institure of Painters in Watercolour this week. I saw a very wide range of styles of representation and figurative painting - with people painting the way they like painting rather than trying to be other people.
at the 198th Exhibition of the RI of Painters in Watercolour
copyright of all paintings - the artists
at the 198th Exhibition of the RI of Painters in Watercolour
copyright of all paintings - the artists
Shirley Trevena RI - much loved as an artist/author/tutor by watercolour artists the world over - had four paintings included in her own unique style - see above.
Bright colours bounced off the walls at me and made me feel good. In fact Spring was very definitely present in that exhibition. It made me wonder how many artists think about the season they're exhibiting in when showing work. On the right you can see 4 more paintings - this time by Tony Hunt RI - the Vice Chair of the RI
Paintings by Tony Hunt RI
I took a lot of photos - and you'll find more images from the exhibition in this post - because they deserve to be seen!
However the point I'd like to underline is this.
Exhibitions which are hung well to provide a constructive contrast between painting styles and which have paintings which make people feel good create a very positive atmosphere. There are few thoughts of 'same old same old' or of artists playing it safe in a recession.
Doing what you do best and painting what you enjoy painting creates a very positive vibe .....and it also helps sales!
Painting by Terry MicKivragan RI (Membership Secretary)
Art BlogsArea Based Art Blogs
I asked recently about whether people were starting blogs for artists living a particular area.
This is the blog of the South African Society of Artists. I love the weather forecast widget at the top of the blog for all the outdoor artists! It is also very usefully using the Blogger pages option to list exhibitions, workshops, art teachers, artists models and interesting articles. This is an example of a format which could usefully be copied by other societies. I was very touched to see that they had Making A Mark listed as one of three useful sites! :)
Daily Painters: What I hadn't realised was that the Daily Painters have been developing blogs for dimension of their blogging. Makes sense - it gives scope for local exhibitions around a theme. My one comment is that some of blogs below have an incredibly busy format and this really stops the eye from focusing on the artwork. Less is more when it comes to marketing. How many galleries cram their gallery walls with adverts while inbetween the artwork?
Daily Painting is not producing a single painting every day...it is simply that painting is part of your life everyday, whether you are sketching, supply shopping, painting, doing photos... it all makes up being an artist and painting daily.
- Daily Painters Of Alabama
- Daily Painters Of Colorado
- Daily Painters of Georgia
- Daily Painters of Florida
- Daily Painters Of Hawaii
- Daily Painters of Illinois
- Daily Painters of North Carolina
- Oklahoma Daily Painters
- Daily Painters of Texas
- Daily Painters Of Utah
- Daily Painters of Washington
- plus the Daily Painters website has a listing of its painters by location
- Susan Abbott has been sketching in Spain - see A Painter's Year
- I love the banner on Milly's Drawings from Nature
- french toast girl has changed her URL due to Blogger stopping support for FTP publishing and is now http://blog.frenchtoastgirl.com/
- On The Art of the Landscape, my post The Czech Republic - Virtual Paintout in May provides a link to Bill's Virtual Paintout blog post for May but recalls also how I nearly froze while painting plein air on the banks of the river in Prague!
- Landscape painting in pastels has two more chapters Chapter 11 - Trees and Chapter 12 - Foliage
- Sadie Valeri (Sadie J Valeri) has won First Place Award for Still Life at the Art Renewal Center Salon
- Jean Haines's blog is Watercolours With Life. Jean regularly writes for the Society For All Artists (SAA) Paint Magazine.
- A new group blog exclusively for Palette Knife painters has been started by Georgia artist Judy Mackey. The url of the blog is http://paletteknifepainters.blogspot.com.
- Kim Ratigan alerted me to the endeavours of Linda Shantz, has once again undertaken her personal challenge of "Thirty Horses, Thirty Days" You can view it on Thirty Horses, Thirty Days
Women painting women
- Women Painting Women was created last year byAlia El-Bermani, Diane Feissel and Sadie J. Valeri. This blog explores how contemporary women figurative artists are approaching women as subjects and it includes some very fine painting. Posts are infrequent but it's worth keeping an eye on because of the quality of the painting and figurative art.
- Women Painting "Mother and Child" - it's not had a lot of posts which is a pity as its a classic subject popularised by Mary Cassatt
Art Business and Marketing
- Approaching Art Galleries: Selling Yourself — Art Biz Blog http://bit.ly/beGPZ3 - do the research and don't annoy the gallery!
- Two useful articles By Ligaya Figueras from the new edition of Art Calendar:
Art and the Economy / Art Collectors
- The Scotsman reported this week that paintings by Artist Jack Vettriano Fails to Seduce Buyers. The notion being suggested is that the Jack Vettriano's controversial work might now plummet in value after the auction snub it got last week. Earlier last month, he gave an interview to the Daily Mail about The secrets of my success: Jack Vettriano. Maybe the moral of the story is that you should never be complacent about your success - or talk too much about it? These are the images from his latest exhibition - Days of Wine and Roses
- The New York Times Artsbeat Blog reports on a Dispute in Los Angeles Over Arts Financing. As money continues to be tight for arts funding I think I can predict there will be more about more news items relating to arts funding. Personally when money is tight I don't have a problem with it being allocated towards those organisations which benefit the most people. It will mean niche interests get squeezed.
- BP Portrait Award 2010 - Shortlist announced on Wednesday. I've got access to the high resolution press images and I have to tell you that Michael Gaskell's is even more impressive close up - but it will be small - and the emotional impact of Daphne Todd's portrait of her mother on her deathbed is intensified.
Art Society Exhibitions
- The Royal Insitute of Painters in Watercolours had a splendid and colourful exhibition at the Mall Galleries - see Exhibition: RI Painters in Watercolour and the images in this post
- Opening tomorrow is an exhibition of recent work by ten invited members of The Pastel Society UK at Gallery LeFort in Bath. Exhibiting artists include Victor Ambrus, Sarah Bee, Peter Brown, Jeannette Hayes, Felicity House, Moira Huntly, Michael Norman, Norma Stephenson, John Tookey and Peter Vince. The exhibition runs until 29th may. It's a real pity that the Gallery website doesn't update its exhibitions page more regularly - and I have no link to offer you for this exhibition.
- CPSA 18th Annual Exhibition: selected artists and work - some new names, some familiar names and some missing names
Art Exhibitions, Fairs and Shows
- On Monday I published the Top 10 Art Exhibitions in the UK in 2009 - which contains quite a few surprises!
- An exhibition of Dutch Landscapes opened at The Queen’s Gallery, Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh on Friday. The exhibition of dutch landscape paintings runs until 9th January 2011 and then transfers to the Queen's Gallery. You can preview some of the highlights on the exhibition microsite. I think this is going to spark a spot of writing about Dutch landscapes on The Art of the Landscape.
This exhibition brings together 42 remarkable works, including paintings by Jacob van Ruisdael, Aelbert Cuyp, Nicolaes Berchem and Meyndert Hobbema.
- Degrees Unedited is the open space for visual and applied arts students in the run up to and presentation of final year shows. You can also catch them on Twitter http://twitter.com/degreesunedited and Facebook
- I agree with the sentiments of Hugh Pearman in Shanghai Expo 2010 - a hairy-fairy thrill - and I'm a big fan of the gardens at Kew!
Art Education / workshops / Tips and techniques
- Illustrator, author and tutor Irene Brady (Nature Drawing) has published her new workbook Nature & Travel Sketch Journaling. You can read all about it in Nature & Travel Sketch Journaling IS READY!
- She also has a second workbook about the Drawing Eagles, Hawks & Owls Workbook which you can read about in New Workbook ~ Drawing Eagles, Hawks & Owls!
I know that life has not been so easy for some artists who are tutors and that they've had workshops which have been slow to fill and others which have had to be cancelled. However other artists are doing roaring business (see below) - and it might be worth studying ALL their sites to work out why. The upcoming Karin Jurick (A Painting Today) workshop in New York City is full but you can sign up for future workshops as follows
- November 1-5, 2010 - held at the Arts Center of Coastal Carolina in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. More info can be found here.
- May 23-27, 2011 - held at the National Academy of Design in New York City. More info can be found here.
Tips and Techniques
- For those unable to make it to a workshop, Karin Jurick has also made over her weekends to questions and answers - so we have a Q & A Friday on A Painting Today - which followed Q & A Weekend and Q & A Friday
A rather specialist topic but one which is particularly relevant to oil painters Ventilating Your Studio By Louise Buyo for Art Calendar. There are 5 tips for improving art quality in the studio and suggestions for further reading.
- Neil Hollingsworth (Paintings in Oil ) highlighted who's starring on some new art supplies Paul Coventry-Brown
- John Smith has written a long and very interesting article about The Rise and Fall of Artists and their Materials on his blog Thoughts from my studio. It doesn't seem to have URLs for specific blog posts
- The results for April's Making A Mark opinion poll have been posted in What types of art book do you like best? (MAM Poll Results) - the results appear to completely contradict the pattern of change to the production of art instruction books
- Plus the new opinion poll for May Have you bought a painting DVD? is now in the side columm (scroll down - just below the Bloggers who follow this blog faces)
Websites, webware and bloggingBlogging
- Nithya Swaminathan (A splash of color) has written a blog post which provides a step by step guideline to add the facebook like button to a blogger blog - Adding the Facebook “like” button to a Blogger blog
In the final week of the election campaign I thought I'd have a political end note.
The legendary political cartoonist for The Guardian Steve Bell (Steve Bell in Wikipedia) was filmed this week sketching "Mandy" ie Peter Mandelson as he deals with Gordon Brown's 'bigot' gaffe and addresses business bosses at the Royal Albert Hall for the Guardian in Steve Bell's election: 'He has very demonic eyebrows, everything about Mandy is sinister'. Watch it - and note the coloured pencils!
However - did you know that
Bell is fond of parodying famous paintings. Examples include his parody of Goya's The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters (in an editorial cartoon about the UK Independence Party); William Hogarth's The Gate of Calais about the ban on UK meat exports following outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease and bovine BSE; and - before the 2005 General Election when it briefly seemed as if the Liberal Democrats might seriously threaten Labour - J. M. W. Turner's The Fighting Temeraire, in which a chirpy Charles Kennedy as tug-boat towed a grotesque and dilapidated Tony Blair to be broken upYou can see more of his cartoons archive in BellToons