Tagged: artists

Abstract Art: A Visual Expression of Emotions

Abstract art started in the year 1911 by the Russian artist Wassily Kandinsky (1866-1944). It became a trend in the twentieth century and became famous because it breaks away from traditional representation of physical objects. Either it’s in the form of a canvas painting or a sculpture of different medium, abstract art is a visual language of forms, lines, colors and different shapes to interpret a concept, without necessarily providing a recognizable visual reference point for the viewers. Abstraction later manifested more formal terms, such as color, simple geometric designs and freedom from objective context.

Robert Delaunay - Premier Disque
Robert Delaunay – Premier Disque

The important connection is that abstract art engages and challenges the intellect but it also engages and challenges the emotions. To fully appreciate it, the viewer has to let go of a need to understand what the artist is trying to say and instead tune into their own interpretation and response to the piece.

As an abstract artist, you express yourself in a way that allows your audience to find his own personal response to the work. Many artists, who call their work abstract, actually do have a subject in mind when they paint. You can take a figure or landscape and simplify it, exaggerate it, or stylize it in some way. You can also use nature as a starting point but express it in different forms and shapes. Color, line, and form are more important than the details of the actual subject matter. The idea is you want to give a sense or feel for the subject rather than an exact replication.

Sonia Delaunay - Prisms Electriques (This painting is made extra special by the reference to great swiss/french poet Blaise Cendrars!)
Sonia Delaunay – Prisms Electriques
(This painting is made extra special by the reference to great swiss/french poet Blaise Cendrars!)

Abstraction indicates a departure from reality in depiction of imagery in art. May it be partial or complete, abstraction is departure of the image to its representation. Artwork which takes liberties altering for instance, the color and form in ways, are conspicuous and with a sense of continuum, can be said to be partially abstract. Total abstraction bears no trace of any reference to anything recognizable.

In summary, the simplified meaning of abstract art is an art that relies on the emotions and mood of the artist and the elements of design rather than exact representation of a subject. This broad definition allows you as an artist to almost unlimited freedom of ideas and expressions. You can create compositions that have no pattern in nature or any subject. You can also work from nature and then interpret your subjects in a non-objective manner.

Image source: http://www.holidayclubrecordings.co.uk

Acrylic Artists Who Made Their Mark in History

Campbell’s Soup Cans, 1962

Many artists use acrylics in painting due to its fast-drying qualities and versatility. Unlike oil paints which take decades to fully dry, an acrylic painting can dry in just hours. You can also use different painting styles when using acrylics and you can use it on canvas, paper, wood, glass, or even stone.

Here are the famous artists who used acrylics in their art works:

1. Andy Warhol (August 6, 1928 – February 22, 1987). Andy Warhol was a celebrated American artist and was considered as one of the leading figures in Pop Art. He was the one who started the use of everyday items such as soup cans, soft drink bottles, and dollar bills as subjects in his paintings which were then displayed in museums. Aside from using mundane objects, he was fascinated in the entertainment industry and used famous celebrities and even political figures as subjects. He created portraits of Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, and Jackie Kennedy.

2. Kenneth Noland (April 10, 1924 – January 5, 2010). Kenneth Noland was an American abstract painter. He was known for his geometrical themes called Chevrons and Stripes and circular motifs which are called Target paintings. Noland was known as one of the leading figures in the Color Field painting style in the US. In the 1950s, he was able to meet influential people in the art scene such as abstract expressionists Helen Frankenthaler and Morris Louis. They greatly affected the artistic direction of his career. He started using Frankenthaler’s technique in stain painting wherein he used a thinned acrylic paint on unprimed canvas. These three painters led the formation of the Color Field painting style.

3. Robert Motherwell (January 24, 1915 – July 16, 1991). Robert Motherwell was an American abstract painter. In the 1960s, he used acrylics in painting large-scale canvases. Primarily using oils, he switched to acrylics because of its quick drying time. The Elegy of the Spanish Republic is considered as one of his most important works. It is a series of abstract paintings using black and white paint in bold movements and strokes.

4. David Hockney (born July 9, 1937). David Hockney is an English painter and draftsmen, and a founding member of the British Pop Art movement in the 1960s. He is one of the most famous British  artists. His visit in California inspired him to paint swimming pools and the urban landscape using acrylics. During that time, he developed his own style of painting called naturalistic-realistic painting. One of his famous works includes The California Collector (1964) which depicts a swimming pool in LA.

5. Roy Lichtenstein (October 27, 1923 – September 29, 1997). Roy Lichtenstein was an American pop artist who used comic strips and advertisements as inspirations in his art works. He was famous for creating bright and graphic images which parodied pop culture. In one of his most significant works, Drowning Girl, he used both oil and acrylic (Magna) paints and the piece was considered as a “masterpiece of melodrama.”

Image source: http://www.moma.org

Checklist For a Plein Air Art Trip

Packing for a Plein Air art trip varies depending on where you’re going and the elements that you will be dealing with. There are variety of things that you must consider since you will be working outdoors. Here’s a list of the basic things you need to have on your trip.


Since you’re going to travel, take note to have your art materials complete. It’s better if you keep things compact and organized to avoid confusion and you might forget some of your essential materials. A good idea is to invest a good art traveling bag which has multiple pockets and organizers to keep your materials intact while you’re traveling.

Support is needed for any surface you plan to work on. And since you are traveling, a portable easel is a very good choice. Special easels comes with storage such as drawers and compartments for carrying paints and brushes within the easel. Table easels are also available if you prefer to sit while painting.

You can always find a shady area to paint but sometimes you’ll have to set up in the sun. The hat is for your protection but the umbrella is to keep the sun off your canvas and palette. A white or gray umbrella so the reflection doesn’t affect your color judgement. Try to keep both palate and canvas in the shade.

You can capture the initial scene with a camera. Positions of clouds and direction of the wind can constantly change outdoors so you can use this trick to make your artwork more consistent. Another advantage of the still shot is that you can use it just in case the weather turns bad and you have to finish your painting indoors.

Bring extra clothes just in case you so you can change just in case things get messy. Or you can dress in layers that you can easily take off as you get hot and put on when it gets colder. Wear neutral colored clothing to avoid too much light reflections onto your painting. Bright colors can also reflect some of their color onto your painting so stick with beige and khakis.


Now that you have your basics, here are some of the things you might want to have with you on your trip to make it more comfortable.
• Water to drink
• Light snacks
• Paper towels
• Insect repellent
• Garbage bags
• Soap and water to clean your brushes

Image source: www.judithgreenleaf.com

Top 25 Inspiring Artists to Follow on Twitter

gemstars1. Gemstars : @gemstars
An artist from Canada who enjoys painting, weaver of ideas, and more. Check out her paintings on her twitter profile.

2. Dianne Hendrix : @AlaskaArtist
This artist and photographer is based in Alaska. Lists include art, writing, travel, and more.

3. Rob Sheridan : @rob_sheridan
He is an artist, designer, and photographer from Los Angeles. He is also the Creative Director for alternative band Nine Inch Nails.

4. Tenacious Artist : @tenaciousartist
Artist, music lover, teacher, Cesar Millan Fan, Polio survivor. Cathy F. is from Texas and runs Deutsch Friesenhahn Fin Art. Check in to hear her inspiring words on life, art, and more.

5. Lissa Rankin : @Lissarankin
This artist is an OBGYN and NY Times bestselling author of Mind Over Medicine, physician, founder of the Whole Health Medicine Institute.

6. Labedzki Art : @Labedzki_Art
This Canadian artist focuses on the abstract. Get links to work, auctions, and more. Canadian abstract artist specializing in figurative painting.

7. Natasha : @natasha
She is a painter of whimsical landscapes from Los Angeles. Responses and tips are found on this Twitter stream. Award-winning Artist & Illustrator, writer, speaker and entrepreneur.


8. Matthew Tubbesing : @matubbesing
Everything from abstract to the Blues are discussed in his twitter account.

9. Adelaide Damoah : @Adelaidedamoah
From the U.K., she is an oil painter and a self-described “hermit and social butterfly.” See what she is up to from her tweets.

10. Dan Byl : @danbyl
This painter actually uses eBay to sell his art. Latest works are often featured on twitter. Paints huge colorful fun paintings.

11. Estria : @estria
He strives to have graffiti recognized as a legitimate art form. See his work, along with the works of others by following. USA’s leading promoter of Graffiti ART FORM. Head of national Estria Battle. Art & inspiration from the streets.

12. Mark E. Wade : @MarkEWade
He is a creative thinker form Connecticut. Get inspired by random thought and musings through tweets.

13. Adrianasimo : @Adrianasimo
This Twitter user’s son has autism and doesn’t let it stop him from creating art. See what they are both up to by following tweets.

14. Dr. Paula Hudson : @DrPaulaHudson
Are you an artist who wants to get in touch with the art loving community? Then follow Paula who specifically began the Twitter account to meet artists.

15. Jaime Lyerly : @jaimelyerly
Tweets are often art focused. Visionary Artist, Shamanic Reiki Energy Healer & Play leader @ Expressive Goddess. Tips for Inspired Living.

16. Annie Strack : @AnnieStrack
In addition to being a writer for “Art Calendar Magazine,” she is also a professional maritime artist. Tweets are often on daily life. Artist Workshops Instructor, Official Authorized USCG Artist, Author, Art Business Consultant

17. Arthur Rau : @arthurra
From Dublin, Ohio. He tweets on modern and contemporary art, theory, design, and more. Tweets are usually on random items.

18. Donna Bernstein : @DonnaB_Art
This artist enjoys using horses as her subjects. She also works in paintings, sculptures, and more.

19. BJ Katz : @BJKatzART
This artist has a wide variety of interests including healthcare, hospitality, spirit, and others.

20. Swarez Art : @SwarezArt
This contemporary artist paints abstract and modern works of art. Tweets are often on random thoughts.


21. Alison Jardine: @alisonjardine
A professional artist in Dallas, originally from England. Currently in a project with Sony & Flavorpill to photograph life in the Dallas arts.

22. Carmen Renieri: @RenieriArts
Freelance visual artist, art collector & entrepreneur. Always looking for new ventures and opportunities.

23. KathyOstman-Magnusen: @KathysArt
Painting, Poetry, Sculpture, Figurative Artist, Goddess, Erotica, Fairies, Mermaids, Politics, Obama fan.

24. Stacy Alexander: @ARTISTstacy P
Professional writer/Visual Artist

25. Teresa Freed: @TeresaFreed
Artist, Website Designer and Marketing Coach. I work in Pastels, primarily landscapes and some portraits.