Monthly Archives: March 2014

It all depends on your point-of-view!

Slide4When deciding what to take a picture of, I often take what is not there. Then sometimes, using Photoshop, I can place someone where they are not. My favorite things to shoot are textures and shadows, and the shapes they form create such contrast and add drama.

Slide1Our job is to break up the space in an interesting way. This is a straight shot looking down from a tall building. Looking up also gives fabulous opportunities for great photos. Cropping can make all the difference because you can choose how much of a shape is needed and where your center of interest is needed.

The usual format for taking pictures is a rectangle, but once I took a photo course, and we had to shoot for a square, a triangle and a circle. We cut out these shapes and placed them in front of the lens before choosing the shots. It is a good excercise and take practice to be able to see it without the croppers.

Slide2But shadows at a certain time of day do something magical. The diagonal ones, especially those that cast lines across items or walls are always exciting. And don’t think normal things cannot be exciting to take. Look at the shadows on these walls, they add texture and make a great composition to boot. Slide3

So whenever you are “oot-n-aboot”, remember it isn’t always there, you have to look for it and make it happen.

So go and shoot something different.


Inspiration is what I need!

Every time I enter an art show and get rejected, (or as the San Diego Slide2Watercolor Society says, declined), I do not want to paint anymore. In fact, the restaurant where my paintings are hanging is going in a new direction, so twenty of my works will be taken down. If that wasn’t enough, now I have to figure out where to store them.

So I am going over my old paintings looking for some inspiration. But of course, I am also working on the three classes I am taking on (Dino 101, Art History for Artists, Animators and Gamers, which I am finding very dull so far and the music they chose to introduce each video is driving me nuts! plus the one on Roman Architecture, which turned me on enough to create the children’s museum exhibit.)  FYI- I emailed it to my teacher at Yale and she loved it. Now I wish she could find a way that we could actually produce it. Wouldn’t that be great? Instead I worked on the paper for it all day today, now that’s depressing too.Slide6

I did think I might get inspired because I went to the Irvine Art Museum yesterday with my Mom’s neighbor and saw the California Impressionists. Wow, I had heard some of the names but to see their work all together was marvelous. Here are the ones I decided to do some more research on: Ken Potter, Franz Bischoff, William Wendt, Robert Wood,Vernon Jay Morse, Edgar Payne, William Jekel, Maurice Logan, George James, Alson Clark, Arthur Matews, Ben Brown, Clarence Kinkle, Colin Campbell Cooper

Now I went on to get some books on this subject and the artists and it said orders over$35 and get free shipping. Right, well I ordered $50 and there is no such thing as what they claim ’cause I am going to get charged for the shipping. Maybe I will wait and order when they really have free shipping. How do they get away with saying that this is the deal? Anyone know?

Hope I get inspired soon I am takking a new art class next week so we shall see.



Roman Wall Painting made easy!

Slide4I am taking a class from (through Yale University), on Roman Architecture which I am finding very enlightening. I always have loved Greek architecture and thought this class would just add to that, I was surprised to have discovered something that was so interesting that I had to figure a way to do something with that new-found knowledge of decoration on walls of fancy villas.Slide19

I have seen gorgeous mosaics on floors and some walls, and fresco wall art in ancient Grecian & Italian sites, but the Romans took it to mathematical heights, and I mean great heights. Look at the height and detail in the wall with the maroon background on the top left and the white one in middle right here. I cannot imagine how long these walls and barreled ceilings took to paint, but read on and you will ask Slide6the same questions I did.

When I learned about the 4 different styles that were used over the years, I decided instead of writing a paper on designing a Roman City, that I would create a Children’s Museum exhibit to expose people to this wonderful art form.

Here are a few of the principles to creating the four different styles. You can see, they divided the walls into sections. (This art was done from around 10 BC to 79 AD). The 1st style is simple, they wanted to show that they had money but couldn’t afford to import marble, so they painted walls to look like it. They added columns and architectural features to look like windows with scenes and vistas behind them in the 2nd style. Slide22In the 3rd style, they finally realized that the walls were flat and painted them so! They added paintings in the center of panels, like a framed painting. The columns were not so massive but became skinny and decorative, they were no longer headed with the Greek capitols (Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian). They used still life art and mythical people in the floating paintings. In the 4th style, they used all of the above and then some. They added cages to the top layer and had buildings and scenes within them, not like a panorama, but a painting within a frame.

romanarchexI used four colors to identify each style with a wall mural showing different walls from various villas uncovered in Pompeii, Herculaneum, and well-preserved villas from the Roman Empire. Slide9What I also added was drafting tables so kids can draw buildings using real architect tools and I added a block area so they can build houses. I saw a fabulous paneled digital presentation on a wall at a fair recently and saw they can project multiple images on panels, so I included this (very expensive wall) above the block area so people can see Roman buildings and ancient dig sites.Slide21

I have updated my exhibit design by added the three column capitals to each table and using a slanted one the Romans used for the fourth table. The height will add grandeur to the whole exhibtion and I decided I could not leave out an archeological dig site showing the kids what the ruins looked like. So they will clear away dirt and unveil the ancient city underneath the photo of Mt Vesuvius.mtvesev1

Slide25(Click on any of the collages to enlarge them so you can see the details, then use the upper left arrow to go back to the blog.)

You can see the entire slide show on YouTube if you go to this link. Now I just have to find some museum who might be interested in hiring me to produce this! I think it is very exciting for every age. And if you can draw, it wouldn’t be too difficult to follow their patterns. (FYI: The YouTube version is not as updated as this one. Look at the map above for the changes.)