Tenerife Espacio de las Artes

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On holiday with my 13 year old son I had little hope I could see a museum and enjoy. I still remember going to the Louvre when he was 8, and barely saw the Mona Lisa, for he was in a hurry to get out of the boring building. Today I found out we simply had to go to a museum on contemporary art and ask the question: “what do you see?” Turned out, this question even made me enjoy more too, for he has such an incredible imagination! We enjoyed the whole museum, but in particular the exposition of Juan Carlos Batista. He makes surrealist sculptures, or; ‘surrealist textual strategies, with their abundance of amalgams and metamorphoses of already-given objects or images‘, like the brochure says. As you can see for yourself:

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Next are some more pictures from works of art we found intriguing. And I won’t say what we saw, you can decide yourself! 😉

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What to do about failure anxiety?

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kunst20falen20arjan20damMy second last post was a review on a book about failure. While reading the book I found out that I am performance goal oriented concerning painting. The book told me that being performance goal oriented people perform less, so I concluded I need to be more learning-goal oriented.

To become more learning-goal oriented, the book suggested 4 steps to follow towards less failure and higher production:

  1. name the obstacles

I want to do it right in one try. I don’t trust my creativity because I don’t want to fail. Most of the time I think I can paint because I am talented. Being convinced of my talent, I don’t believe in the grow-theory, which says I am not born this way, but I need to practice, try, fail and try again in order to grow. Due to this, I get frustrated when I don’t get it right, and I quit. And after quitting I have a hard time believing I can do it right the next time I try to finish the job.

2. how can you overcome these obstacles?

Don’t quit. Don’t try to get it right in one try. Do exercises in becoming more creative. Start believing in the grow-theory and practice, try, fail and try again in order to grow. Start believing I can do better. Take the time. Don’t set performance-goals. Schedule study-time.

3. set goals to overcome the obstacles

Paint, at least for 4 hours per week. (I unfortunately also have a job and a household to run,..) Don’t quit when it doesn’t work. Continue after failure. Try new techniques.

4.monitor progress

How do I monitor progress? I, for example, can promise to write a blog post about trying new techniques, every other month. How about that?

5. give yourself rewards for achieving goals

My reward? Isn’t getting better the best reward? Otherwise; chocolate,.. chocolate will be my reward. I like that idea,.. Yeah, let’s get started!

Highlights

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As an autodidact, nobody ever learnt me any techniques. Well, except for my great-uncle, when I was little, and the time I attended a painting-workshop, some time ago now,.. Therefore, I don’t like to call the stuff I do with my brush, techniques,… rather; ways.

I’ve got my own ways to apply highlight. For I found out that you should never underestimate the power of highlights! A painting without highlights, is a non-painting,.. it’s flat,.. non-living,..

I learned a thing or two about highlights by visiting the Vermeer-house in Delft (Holland, of course,..). He’s the ultimate master, and I don’t even try to copy his techniques,.. or maybe he as well called them ways,.. (lol) for adding highlights.

Here’s how I added highlight on some leaves:

In this first photo you can see the difference between the leaves already highlighted, and the ones I haven’t done yet.

art 19I first use a ‘0’ da Vinci red sable brush, to dot some white paint on the desired places.

art 18After that, I use a 1/4″ expression brush, to fade the white. If there  eventually still is too much white, or the white got outside the lines, I use thinner,.. I should probably be ashamed of it,.. for to me it sounds like something a painter never, ever, ever should use on his painting,.. but,.. it’s my painting,… and my ways,.. and to me it works.

art 16I never use much though,.. I put some thinner on a napkin and clean my ‘0’ brush with it. By doing that, the brush will absorb a little bit of thinner; enough to erase the excess of white.

Imma eat you

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Day 60 on the 100 day drawing challenge: draw an ‘imma eat you’ face. What’s that??

Well, I interpreted it as a face you would put on when you’re talking to a baby: ‘You’re so adorable!! Oh yes; I’m gonna eat you!!’ But; where to find an example of an ‘imma eat you’ face, if not from the mirror?? Because I actually did not want to draw my own face,.. again,.. And google really does not have a lot of ‘imma eat you’ faces,.. not any, actually.

After a long and tough search on the internet, I found a picture of a muscular guy, with basil in his mouth,.. Not really what I was looking for, but very close,.. so I gave up the search and sticked with the muscular guy’s face.

art 79I didn’t want to draw the basil, so I had to execute creative drawing on the mouth. And that actually wasn’t easy, unfortunately. You’re probably able to see the difference between the drawing of the mouth and the drawing of the eyes.

Wait,.. if I seperate the eyes from the mouth, you’ll see,..

art 80To me, the eyes and nose are pretty realistic,.. but the mouth is more like a cartoon drawing, just because I had to invent 80% of the shape of the mouth,.. I guess I have to practice on the ‘Imma eat you’ face and cloy google with the good results, so I’ll be the master of the ‘imma eat you’ face some day!

charcoal 02

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As you might know, I’m following a 100 day drawing challenge, and every now and then I fulfill this challenge by drawing with charcoal.

Today the challenge made me draw ‘clouds’, and since I have read some tips on drawing with charcoal, I wanted to apply them on my clouds-drawing.

art 72The first tip was to fill the paper with charcoal and start with a grey background. So I did,.. But the background wasn’t solid grey enough for my liking, so I used the blending stump to smudge the charcoal and make the grey color more uniform.

I wish I hadn’t done that, because after the smudging it was impossible to erase the charcoal . And erasing the charcoal was the second tip for creating highlights in the drawing.

art 73So, I actually had to deal with that fact and added the next charcoal layer on top of this first layer. Because I wanted the clouds to look soft, I again used the blending stump.

The third tip was to use compressed charcoal, instead of vine charcoal, for the details. The compressed charcoal is made of powdered charcoal, held together with a binder. In this case the binder was wood, art 75so it looked like a penil,.. But apparently I had the cheap compressed charcoal, for there was no possible way to sharpen the tip of the ‘pencil’. I could not even create any point to the ‘pencil’, for the charcoal crumbled too heavily.

That was a bummer. The fourth tip also wasn’t realizable. It told me that the kneaded eraser could be used to create thin, white lines in the drawing. It art 77didn’t. The lines were more than 3 mm thick, so my drawing couldn’t get as detailed as I wanted, plus, the lines weren’t entirely white, because I smudged the first layer of charcoal.

I will continue practicing though, I made some errors, so next time I know how to avoid these, hopefully I will be able to create detailed drawings with charcoal someday.

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artists that inspire

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When I talk about artists that inspire, I can talk about an enormous variety of different kind of artists. Van Gogh inspires me because of his creativity and his perseverance. He was so innovative in his style! Rembrandt inspires me, also for his life-story and his unique style. But I also am inspired by Pedro Campos, who’s paintings look amazingly realistic! Another great artist is Yossi Kotler; I’m still planning to create a painting in his style; which is really cool and unique.

Vincent_van_Gogh_-_Self-Portrait_-_Google_Art_Project_(454045)There are just so many artists who are able to inspire me. All have their own style and story. Today I discovered an artist named Savannah Burgess. She had spent this summer drawing the complete Chinese Zodiac, and it looks amazing!(go check it out here)

She finished her drawing the 19th of August, and from that day on, the picture has gone viral. And that, actually, really inspires me! Savannah Burgess is only 19 years of age, and she’s got a facebook-community with more than 5000 likes! This young girl from Florida, still a student, really deserves all these likes. I mean: her art is amazing and she worked real hard for it. She really is a good example of how to become a successful artist. She did it! And she’s only 19!

If only I knew her secret. Perhaps I should start by inviting more people to my facebook-community. So here’s my request: please go to: https://www.facebook.com/articated.nl and hit like! 😀 Thank you! Maybe one day I also will have 5000 likes.

No painting

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Today on pinterest, I was searching for art. I’m especially interested in new, unknown artists, who deserve to be discovered by me. 😀 That’s how I came up against a remarkable realistic and awesome still-life of cheese and wine. Realism is something I really admire in pictures. I’m really impressed by painters who can create photo-like paintings, I think those painters deserve to be venerated, and mostly they are. So that’s why I was surprised that, by googling the name of the artist of the cheese and wine picture, I found nothing,..

That was the first clue,..

The absence of any art-like ‘hits’ on google, when entering his name, made me curious. Because: even if you google me; a very unknown artist, with not much paintings, and without the ability to create photo-realistic paintings, you’ll find my art! So; what was with this guy: Nikolai Panov? To find out I followed the link of the pinterest-picture to the original website: http://500px.com/photo/41661488/cheese-&-wine-by-nikolai-panov: no information about the picture or the artist AT ALL! Again; what’s with this guy? *second clue*

Nicolai PanovOn the website you were able to buy the picture on canvas, wallpaper, or buy a licence for using the picture. These are great ways to sell your art, by the way. You get to keep the original, get money for your work, and your art travels the world, spreads among the people, and will ultimately promote your work! But, I didn’t visit the website to buy; I wanted to know more about Nikolai Panov, because I started to get the impression his art was not painted, but photography. No clues on this website though,.. I thought,..

After some more googling I found the same guy again on http://www.artflakes.com. Again; an artshop, and again no information on the guy. But they did provide me some more pictures. I posted one of his artworks right here; I’m probably not allowed to do so, even though I’m promoting Panov’s work by posting it,.. But I really wanted to share it with you. What do you think: painted of photography? Difficult; right? It is so realistic! But it really looks like a painting still! (Only without signature,.. which could be a third clue,..)

But, about a year ago, I visited an exposition of pictures of Bas Meeuws in the Westfries Museum in Hoorn, the Netherlands. This Bas Meeuws created still-lifes, inspired by the popular, supererogated, flower compositions from the 17th century. Meeuws’ pictures are digitally manipulated photographs, and therefore deceptively real. (check his website) If you do not know they’re manipulated photo’s, you’ll spend you’re time in front of the picture wondering it’s character. Just like I did with the pictures of Panov.

But eventually, my presumptions were confirmed by checking the http://www.500px.com website again. (This was the website the pinterest-link directed me to) The website appears to be a premier photography community; Panov definitely is just like Meeuws! Still awesome pictures, and they kept me busy for a while, but they’re no paintings.

With the rise of photography, the world of art changed. People like Panov and Meeuws confirm this change, and actually I think it’s a good thing; it really is art. But I don’t think they’ll replace painted art ever.