Tagged: canvas art

Canvas paintings on easels

How Painters Can Showcase Their Artwork

For painters, showcasing their artwork effectively is essential for gaining recognition, attracting buyers, and building a successful career in the art world. Artists have numerous platforms and strategies at their disposal to exhibit their work to a global audience.

In this article, we’ll explore practical and engaging ways painters can showcase their artwork to maximize exposure and opportunities.

1. Online Portfolios and Websites

Having an online presence is important for artists. Creating a professional website or portfolio allows painters to showcase their artwork in a curated and accessible format. Platforms like Wix, Squarespace, and WordPress offer user-friendly tools for building stunning portfolios that reflect the artist’s style and personality. Additionally, online galleries such as Saatchi Art and ArtStation provide opportunities for artists to sell their work and connect with potential buyers worldwide.

2. Social Media Marketing

Social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), and TikTok offer powerful tools for artists to reach a broad audience and engage with art enthusiasts. By regularly sharing high-quality images of their artwork, along with behind-the-scenes glimpses into their creative process, painters can cultivate a loyal following and generate buzz around their work.

Using hashtags, collaborating with influencers, and participating in online art communities are effective strategies for expanding reach and attracting attention to their artwork.

Read 6 Factors to Consider When Photographing Your Paintings for helpful pointers.

3. Art Exhibitions and Events

Participating in art exhibitions, fairs, and events provides painters with valuable opportunities to showcase their artwork to a live audience and network with fellow artists, collectors, and gallery owners. Whether it’s a local art fair, a group exhibition at a gallery, or a solo show in a public space, these events offer a tangible and immersive experience for viewers to connect with the artwork on a deeper level. Artists can also leverage digital platforms to promote their participation in these events and generate excitement among their online followers.

4. Collaborations and Partnerships

Collaborating with other artists, designers, brands, and organizations can expand painters’ reach and introduce their artwork to new audiences. Whether it’s creating custom pieces for commercial spaces, collaborating on art installations, or partnering with fashion brands for product design, these collaborations provide unique opportunities for exposure and creative expression. Building mutually beneficial partnerships can also open doors to new avenues for selling artwork and expanding the artist’s brand.

5. Art Competitions and Awards

Entering art competitions and awards can provide painters with prestigious recognition and validation for their work, as well as valuable exposure to jurors, critics, and collectors. Whether it’s a local juried exhibition or an international art prize, participating in these competitions can elevate the artist’s profile and credibility within the art community. Winning or being shortlisted for awards can also serve as a powerful marketing tool, garnering press coverage and attracting attention from galleries and collectors.

Showcasing artwork effectively requires a strategic and multi-faceted approach that combines online presence, social media marketing, live events, collaborations, and participation in competitions. By using these platforms and strategies, painters can maximize their exposure, reach new audiences, and ultimately, advance their careers in the competitive world of art. With dedication, creativity, and persistence, painters can transform their passion into a thriving and successful artistic journey.

Looking for high quality canvases?

CanvasLot is an Austin-based manufacturer of durable canvases for painting. Trusted by many artists, we have been providing exceptional canvases to art students, professionals and hobbyists. Contact us to know more about our canvases.

Should I Stretch My Own Canvas?

Embarking on a painting journey is an adventure filled with boundless creativity and artistic exploration. Yet, before we can unleash our brushes upon the canvas, an important decision must be made—do we purchase a pre-stretched canvas or stretch the canvas ourselves?

There are pros and cons to stretching your own canvas and buying a pre-stretched canvas.

Stretching your own canvas

Canvas rolls in an art studio
Canvas rolls in an art studio

Pros

1. Cost-effective. Artists stretch their own canvas for the savings they will incur in the long run. You remove the cost paid for professional services, but keep in mind that you have to buy in bulk in the beginning (canvas rolls, stretcher bars, tools, etc.).

2. Personalization. Stretching your own canvas gives you the freedom to customize the canvas according to your preferences and artistic vision. You have complete control over the materials that will  be used in your canvas.

3. Additional learning. Most artists can learn how to stretch a canvas. It will be challenging at first, but it’s a valuable learning experience.

Cons

1. Time consuming. As with other DIY projects, stretching a canvas can be time-consuming, especially for beginners. Think about whether the savings is worth the time you’ll spend in the stretching process.

2. Skill. It’s a learned skill to stretch a canvas. An Internet search on tutorials on how to stretch a canvas may help you, but it’s better to have proper guidance from an experienced artist or craftsman.

3. Space. You need to have ample space to stretch a canvas.

Buying Pre-stretched Canvas

Several sizes of pre-stretched canvases
Several sizes of pre-stretched canvases

Pros

1. Time-saving. Buying  a pre-stretched canvas frees you from the laborious task of stretching and priming, allowing you to devote more time to the creative process itself.

2. Convenient. A pre-stretched canvas gives you the simplicity of a ready-to-use surface. Whether you’re painting in the comfort of your studio or amidst the hustle and bustle of a plein air adventure, a pre-stretched canvas is a portable, hassle-free companion that empowers you to create wherever inspiration strikes.

3. High quality. Pre-stretched canvases are crafted with care and precision, ensuring a professional-quality surface. They provide a stable foundation that resists warping and sagging, preserving your artwork for generations to come.

Cons

1. Limited sizes. Off-the-shelf canvases may be limited in size and you might not find the right canvas that you need. But, there are shops like CanvasLot that offers custom-sized canvases from 6 inches up to 12 feet.

2. Changes in surface tension. Temperature changes, improper handling, vibrations are a few factors that affect the surface tension of a pre-stretched canvas.

Final word: Should you stretch your own canvas?

Whether you’re working with your own stretched canvas or a pre-stretched one, there are advantages to both options. If you’re working on large paintings regularly, stretching your canvas have its perks. But, if you paint once in a while, or you like to create small and medium artwork, then pre-stretched canvases are for you.

6 Factors to Consider When Photographing Your Paintings

Creating a masterpiece on canvas takes time, skill, and passion. But what good is your stunning artwork if you can’t capture its brilliance on camera? As a proud creator of art, it’s natural for you to show it to the world.

Whether you’re photographing your paintings for personal satisfaction, art shows, or grants, here are some factors to consider to hopefully help you capture the beauty of your work like a pro!

1. Lighting. Like a painting itself, lighting can make or break your photograph. Indirect, natural light is your best friend, so position your artwork near a window or in a well-lit room. Beware of harsh sunlight though—it can cast unwelcome glares and distort colors.

If you’re pressed for time and the weather isn’t cooperating, you can use two artificial lights such as flashlights or table lamps. A simple triangle setup will be useful in reducing shadows on your photos. Place the lights between the canvas and the camera with the lights pointing at a 45-degree angle towards the painting. The camera should be behind the lights.

Photo by Patrick Tomasso on Unsplash
Photo by Patrick Tomasso on Unsplash

2. Position. Hang your painting on a neutral colored wall (black, white, gray). Make the center of the artwork parallel to the position of your camera. A tripod is useful to get good shots, especially if you’re photographing several paintings.

3. Composition. Tell a story with your photos. If you’re tired of taking 2-D images of your paintings, try including props (art materials), changing angles, or let someone else take a picture of you working on your artwork. Experiment and see which photos work for you.

4. Background. Your artwork is the star of the show, so don’t let a cluttered background steal its thunder. Clear the space around your painting of distractions—coffee cups, stray brushes, or that rogue sock—and let your canvas art shine in all its glory.

5. Camera settings. Ensure your camera’s focus is razor-sharp on every brushstroke and color gradient. Take your time to adjust the focus manually if needed, and don’t be afraid to zoom in for those intricate details. Your painting’s precision deserves nothing less than crystal-clear perfection.

6. Editing. Taking a photo of your painting doesn’t end once the photo is snapped. If you’re on a budget, there are free and inexpensive photo editing software that you can use to edit your photos. With these programs, you can do minor adjustments, crop the photo, adjust the color and contrast, and remove impurities.

Hope these will help you capture the beauty of your paintings and how you represent yourself professionally. Of course, there are other factors to consider when photographing your paintings, but these six are the basic and are a good starting point.

How to Pack and Ship Canvas Art

Packing and shipping framed canvas art requires careful attention to ensure the artwork arrives at its destination safely and in pristine condition. Here’s a step-by-step guide to pack and ship framed canvas art:

1. Gather materials. Before you begin, gather all the necessary materials. You’ll need a sturdy cardboard box slightly larger than the artwork, acid-free paper, bubble wrap, air cushions, packing paper, packing tape, cardboard corner protectors, and a marker for labeling.
2. Wrap the artwork. This step has many layers. Take your time during this step.

  • Make sure that the frame is secure and there are no loose piece (hanging hardware, wires, etc.) that could damage the art during shipping.
  • Use acid-free paper to wrap the artwork. This will protect the piece from marks and indentations that could damage it.
  • Tightly wrap the artwork in cling film. Start from the back of the frame and wrap the cling film around the artwork several times.
  • Wrap the framed canvas art in several layers of bubble wrap. Take note that the bubbles should be facing away from the surface of the painting. Ensure that the entire surface of the artwork is covered, paying extra attention to the corners and edges, which are vulnerable to damage during transit. Secure the bubble wrap in place with packing tape.

Tip: When packing a very large framed artwork, it’s better to remove the glazing since there’s a greater risk of the glass breaking during transit. Put a clean sheet of cardboard on the painting to protect it.

Packed canvases for shipping
Packed canvases for shipping

3. Protect the corners. Place cardboard corner protectors over the corners of the framed canvas to provide additional reinforcement and protection against impacts.

4. Prepare the box. Line the bottom of the cardboard box with a layer of packing paper or bubble wrap to cushion the artwork. If shipping multiple pieces, separate them with additional layers of packing material to prevent them from rubbing against each other.

5. Position the artwork in the box. Carefully place the wrapped and protected framed canvas art in the center of the box, ensuring that it is positioned upright and does not touch the sides of the box. Fill any empty spaces with additional packing material, such as bubble wrap or packing peanuts, to prevent shifting during transit.

Tip: Make sure that you’ve filled the box with air cushions and/or insulation foam so the artwork doesn’t move at the center of the box.

6. Seal the box. Once the artwork is securely positioned in the box, seal the box with packing tape. Reinforce the seams and edges of the box to prevent it from opening during shipping.

7. Label the box. Use “Fragile” and “Handle with Care” stickers all around the shipping box. Include the sender’s and recipient’s addresses, as well as any special instructions for the carrier.

8. Choose a shipping method. Select a reputable shipping carrier that offers insurance and tracking services for valuable items. Consider opting for expedited shipping or additional insurance coverage for added peace of mind.

9. Schedule pickup or drop-off. Arrange for the packaged artwork to be picked up by the shipping carrier or drop it off at a designated shipping location. Be sure to obtain a receipt or tracking number as proof of shipment.

10. Monitor shipment. Keep track of the shipment’s progress using the provided tracking number. Notify the recipient once the artwork has been successfully delivered.

Packing a canvas art may take so much of your time, but it will give you and your client peace of mind. Also, remember that the time spent packing your artwork is a fraction of the time you spent creating it.

How Austin’s Painters Connect with Clients

In the vibrant artistic community of Austin, TX, painters thrive on a diverse array of commission projects that fuel their creativity and sustain their livelihoods. From murals adorning city walls to personalized portraits capturing cherished memories, artists in Austin use various strategies to secure commission work and establish meaningful connections with clients.

Here’s how Austin artists find commission projects:

Networking. Start locally. Connections within the local art scene is important in establishing your mark in the industry. Austin boasts a rich cultural landscape teeming with galleries, art festivals, and community events, providing ample opportunities for artists to showcase their work and forge connections with potential clients.

By actively participating in exhibitions and engaging with fellow artists and art enthusiasts, painters can expand their professional networks and attract the attention of individuals seeking commissioned artwork.

Networking is also a great way to discuss about canvas suppliers, paint brands, and painting tips and techniques.

Social media. Everybody uses social media for personal and professional needs.  Social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok plays an essential role in connecting Austin’s painters with commission projects.

With social media, Austin artists share their portfolios, behind-the-scenes glimpses of their work in progress, and promote their services to a wide audience. Through strategic use of hashtags, targeted outreach, and engaging content, painters can cultivate an online presence that resonates with potential clients and generates inquiries for commission work.

Photo by MJ Tangonan on Unsplash

Collaboration. Artists in Austin often collaborate with local businesses, organizations, and homeowners to bring their artistic visions to life through commissioned paintings and installations.

From coffee shops and restaurants to schools and community centers, establishments across Austin embrace the transformative power of art to enhance their spaces and engage with their patrons.

By proactively reaching out to businesses and pitching their ideas for custom artwork, painters can secure commission projects that not only showcase their talents but also contribute to the cultural fabric of the city.

Referrals. Satisfied clients serve as valuable source of commission projects for painters in Austin. They are often eager to recommend the artist to friends, family, and colleagues seeking similar services.

In addition to providing beautiful canvas art, artists maintain positive relationships with clients and provide good customer service since a sale of an artwork doesn’t end at the installation of the painting.

These are just a few ways how artists in Austin get commission work. In this thriving artistic hub, commission projects serve not only as opportunities for painters to showcase their talents but also as a tool for enriching the cultural tapestry of Austin.

 

How to Manage Unsold Paintings

Managing unsold paintings can be a common challenge for artists. Here are some suggestions on how to handle and potentially monetize your unsold artwork:

  • Create an Online Portfolio. Build a professional website by using online platforms like Etsy, DeviantArt, or Saatchi Art to showcase your unsold paintings. This provides a centralized location for potential buyers to discover and purchase your work.
  • Social Media Promotion. Social media is your friend. Leverage social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), TikTok, and Pinterest to showcase your artwork. Regularly share images, stories, and updates about your paintings to increase visibility.

  • Art Shows and Exhibitions. Join local art shows, galleries, or exhibits to display and sell your paintings. Networking with other artists and art enthusiasts at such events can also open up new opportunities.
  • Limited-Time Promotions. Create limited-time promotions or discounts for your unsold paintings to encourage sales. This can be especially effective during holiday seasons or special events.
  • Prints and Reproductions. Consider offering prints or reproductions of your unsold paintings. This allows you to reach a broader audience at a lower price point and provides an alternative for those who may not be able to afford original artwork.
  • Collaborate with Local Businesses. Partner with local businesses such as cafes, restaurants, or offices to display and sell your artwork on consignment. This can attract potential buyers who may not have visited traditional art galleries.
  • Art Leasing. Explore the option of leasing your artwork to businesses or individuals. Some people might be interested in rotating artwork in their spaces without committing to a purchase.

Best Restaurants for Art Lovers

casa_lever

Dining establishments are now incorporating art in their décor to showcase their collections and to also entice customers. Aside from offering delicious food, these restaurants and cafés also serve as art galleries, displaying paintings on canvas, sculptures, and other artworks. If you’re an artist, or an art lover, check out these restaurants:

Casa Lever, New York. Casa Lever is a fine dining restaurant in Manhattan which displays modern art. Several portraits of celebrities created by Andy Warhol grace the walls of this restaurant. The portraits include Sylvester Stallone, Aretha Franklin, and Giorgio Armani.

Four Seasons Restaurant, New York. Four Seasons Restaurant displays changing galleries of Modern Art, including artworks from Andy Warhol, Jackson Pollock, and Helen Frankenthaler. There’s an interesting story about American artist Mark Rothko. Rothko was commissioned to create a series paintings for the dining rooms. He created the paintings with “malicious intentions” but then decided to return the advance payment and kept his paintings for himself.

The Leopard at des Artistes, New York. The Leopard is an Italian fine dining restaurant in New York. The dining area displays the six panels of wood nypmhs and paintings by American artist Howard Chandler Christy which includes The Parrot Girl, The Swing Girl, and  Fountain of Youth.

Tru, Chicago. The interiors of Tru looks like an art gallery, with its high ceilings, pin-spot lights, and white walls. It displays pieces from some of the best 20th century artists such as the King of the Pop Artists Andy Warhol, American geometric painter Peter Halley, and German abstract painter Gerhard Richter.

L’Escargot, London. Opened in 1927, L’Escargot houses an extensive collection of original artworks by some of the famous artists in the 20th century such as French painter Henri Matisse, English painter David Hockney, Spanish painter & sculptor Joan Miró, and Russian artist Marc Chagall.

Maxim’s, Paris. Maxim’s is famous for its Art Nouveau interior decor. It displays an extensive collection of illustrious masterpieces from the Belle Epoch. Maxim’s display more than 500 original, signed pieces from all over the world.

La Colombe d’Or, St. Paul de Vence, France. La Colombe d’Or is a hotel and restaurant located in an old medieval town in France. Paul Roux started it as a café bar in 1920 and then later opened an inn which attracted artists from neighbor towns. Many paintings now grace the walls of the restaurant since artists such as Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse who were frequent customers exchanged their works as payment for meals or their stay.

Image source: www.casalever.com

Stuck in a Rut? 5 Ways to Get Inspired to Paint

inspiration

There are times in an artist’s life when he feels uninspired, unmotivated, and uncreative. It’s like there’s a creative lull, especially after finishing a major artwork. You feel like you’ll never be able to create another beautiful painting again, you’re tired of picking up your paintbrush and starting your first stroke on the canvas, you have no inspiration to work on. If you are in this phase, here are some ways which can help you get out of the creative block you’re experiencing.

1. Look around you to get inspiration. Get out of your studio and take a walk. Be conscious of your surroundings. Notice the things around you. Look with a fresh new perspective of your environment. Sometimes, because an object, a person, or an event is ordinary to you, you may not take notice of it. You’ll be surprised how simple, ordinary things around you can give you inspiration on your next painting. You’ll be able to express yourself more accurately if your subject is something which you can relate to, or something that you are familiar with.

2. Work on more than one painting at a time. This technique seems absurd. You are uncreative yet I’m suggesting you to work on two paintings. A painting, especially if it’s big-scale, can drain your creative juices in the long run. Working on the same project everyday can be a bit tiresome and tedious. To sort of “spice up” your painting sessions, try doing two paintings. If you’re finished with an area or element in the first painting and you’re feeling tired, you can then switch to the second painting. This allows you to rest your mind from the first painting and when you come back to it, you will see areas which you can improve and enhance.

3. Experiment with a different painting technique or medium. Humans are creatures of habit. We want to do the same things in the same way. If you’re feeling uninspired, try to create a new habit in painting. Learn a new painting style and start using it. This may be a trial and error exercise for you but as you go along, you’ll improve and hopefully, master this new painting style. It can even be your new signature style in your paintings. If you’re always working with oil paints, try using watercolors or pastels. Different media require different treatments, brush strokes, and handling. You may have to learn more about a new medium that you want to work on and studying about it may give you the motivation to start painting again.

4. Look at the artworks of other painters. Art galleries, museums, and art exhibitions showcase numerous paintings and other artworks. Seeing the creativity of other artists can also inspire you to do your own masterpiece. Look at the Internet for paintings done by famous artists and see if you can learn a thing or two about how use the same painting technique or materials in your own project. Check out art magazines to see what subjects are popular nowadays, who are the upcoming artists, or where you can get art lessons.

5. Meet with other artists. Get together with your art friends. If all of you are busy, schedule an appointment that all of you will keep. This is when you can share your ideas, frustrations, tips, problems, etc. Discussing with your art buddies can help you get fresh ideas, be motivated and refreshed. After a lunch or coffee with friends, you may find yourself filled with enthusiasm and eagerness to create another beautiful artwork.

Image source: www.thecreativecomplex.com

5 Tips in Buying an Artist’s Easel

311px-Tripod_easelIn a previous blog post, I explained the different types of easels available to painters. With a wide range of easels out there, how do you choose the easel for you? Here are tips to help you in selecting the perfect easel:

Tip #1. Ask these questions to yourself:

  • What kind of painting do I always do?
  • What medium am I using?
  • What is my budget for an easel?
  • Where will I place and store the easel? Do I have adequate space?
  • Where do I usually do my paintings? Inside a studio or outdoors?

Your answers to these questions will help you decide on which easel is best for you. A tabletop easel is best if you like to paint small-scale paintings or you have very limited space in your room. Different medium require different easels. For example, if you paint with oils, use an A-frame or H-frame easel, or whatever easel that will provide you with a vertical working surface. If you use several medium such as oils and watercolors, a convertible easel is best. Aside from these factors, the budget and space should also be considered.

Tip #2. Check the sturdiness of the easel. The easel should be sturdy enough to hold your canvas, support the painting process, and will not easily topple. The larger the canvas you’re working on, the sturdier the easel should be. You wouldn’t want to work on a shaky surface wherein each brush strokes vibrate because the easel cannot give ample support. Make sure that you’re not buying a display easel which is lightweight and spindly. It is designed for showcasing paintings, and not for working on paintings.

Tip #3. Choose an easel that offers adjustability. Buy an easel which provides the greatest degree of adjustability. When painting, you may want to paint standing up or sitting down, you need to work on top of the canvas as well as at the bottom. You need to have an easel that can be adjusted to give you the right tilt so you can paint on different areas of the canvas.

Tip #4. Look for an easy-to-use easel. This tip is related to Tip #3. Check if you can easily use the screw and bolt mechanism of the easel. See if it tightens properly according to the height and angle you preferred.

Tip #5. Save money for a quality easel. Keep in mind that an easel is one of your biggest expense in painting. You may have to wait for some time and keep saving for a high quality easel rather than buying cheap easels. You will be using an easel for a long time so it’s better to buy an easel that would last.

Beautiful Paintings Using Painting Knives

Tired of using paintbrushes? Want to experiment on using other tools in painting? You can try using a painting knife. People confuse a painting knife with a palette knife, the terms are used interchangeably, but when applying paint on a canvas, painting knife is used. Palette knife is used to mix and blend paint colors.

Using a painting knife produces thick, textured art work which is great for creating impasto. Impasto is a painting technique, using a thick application of paint that makes no attempt to look smooth. Most of the times, oil paint is the medium used in knife painting because of its think consistency but acrylics can also be used.

Knife painting can be a liberating technique. It lets you play with paint using the knife to create different depth and texture to the canvas. You need to load more paint that you normally need to the painting knife. You can then rub, squish, scrape, whip, slice, dab, mix the paint and let it sit there on the canvas. Many abstract and impressionist painters use painting knives in painting such as Vincent van Gogh, Willem de Kooning, Hans Hofmann, and contemporary artists Frank Auerbach and Leonid Afremov. Most common subjects in knife painting include architectural structures, landscapes, and man-made objects.

If you’re looking at a painting and you’re not sure whether the impasto technique was used, look at the painting from the side. If you see lumps of paint on the canvas, you’ll be sure that impasto was used.

Here are some beautiful paintings which used painting knives:

Wheat Field with Cypresses_Van_Gogh
Wheat Field with Cypresses by Vincent van Gogh, 1889.

Vincent van Gogh created several paintings in his Wheat Fields series. In the painting above, notice the movements of the clouds, trees, and the wheat field. Van Gogh used the impasto technique in this painting, and all the paintings in the series. He used bright, vivid paint colors to convey energy and movement.

Farewell_to_Anger_Afremov
Farewell to Anger by Leonid Afremov

Leonid Afremov is a Russian-Israeli modern impressionistic artist known for his use of painting knives in his artworks. He is also known as a self-promoting artist, using the Internet to promote and sell his paintings and not much relying on art galleries and exhibitions. In his paintings, you will see how he effectively used the knife in applying, mixing, and creating images. He was able to develop a painting style distinctly his own.

Image sources:
www.metmuseum.org
www.afremov.com