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Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Some useful information for artmaking.

Greetings, friends. I have a few random bits of, for lack of a better word, wisdom that have been helpful in my own artistic pursuits. This is, of course, not to say that I know a heck of a lot about anything. I believe it was Plato who stated that he was the smartest man alive, and tha he knew nothing. But I digress... these are just a few tips I've found helpful and I'd ike to share them.

If possible, paint or draw standing up. When sitting down, one tends to lean over one's work, the back gets a bit hunched up, and this could be bad for the spine. Standing up also allows for more movement, and Art should be a dynamic process. It's as much about thinking and seeing as it is about creating. (Salvador Dali has a great quote about "The Thinker", by Rodin. Something about "It's fine for shitting but not for thinking!" He was referring to the seated position. If anyone knows his exact words, please let me know.) Keep a chair handy so you can take a few steps back and take a break when you need it, and study your work in progress.

Keep a mirror handy. A medium hand-held one will do fine. This is so you can gaze adoringly into your own eyes and repeat to yourself, in a sultry lisp, "You look fabulous, dahling, yesss you do, very beautiful and sexxxy! Yes you are!" Ha ha, just kidding. No, the mirror is so you can look at your artwork in it. It will provide an alternative view, but an important one. Your composition should be as balanced reflected in the mirror as it is normally. Or, to put it another way, it should look just as good backward as forward. It's surprising how different the aspects of image will appear when viewed in this way. Turning the image upside-down or sideways is also helpful.

If you go to YouTube, look for "space4art". It's a series of videos by and about the artist Michael Parkes, (a favorite of mine,) where he explains alot of his techniques. His art is amazing, and he explains it very intelligently and articulately. Kind of an anti-Warhol. (Not to say that I don't respect Andy Warhol.) He talks about the mirror technique in this video: at about 3:30.

So that's it for now. Thanks for reading. I've got a new print in my Etsy shop, feel free to check it out, let me know what you think:

Also don't forget to look for Design Style Guide on Etsy, some great work there, visual arts and such, and I'll post some more hints, tips, tricks, methods, madness and what not soon.


Michael M. Koch

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