Monday, June 16, 2008

Monday, June 16th 2008

Summer is almost here; Father's Day has come and gone, and we look forward to time with family, vacation travel, and opportunity for growth, exploration, and creative expression.

A quick kudos for Evelyn Breit, who attained Merit Membership with the Atlanta Artists Center; our efforts and hard work do have a pay off!

There is an upcoming encaustic workshop being offered at the AAC on Saturday, July 19th. Who among you has experienced, encountered, applied this particular technique? I my self am interested in utilizing this for my current portfolio; the medium's lumiosity and depth would lend itself well to the ideas I hold in my mind's eye.
The workshop is being taught by Helen DeRamus from 10 AM until 5 PM. and the cost is $150 for AAC members, $165 for non-members.

Encaustic painting, also known as hot wax painting, involves using heated beeswax to which colored pigments are added. The liquid/paste is then applied to a surface — usually prepared wood, though canvas and other materials are often used.

The simplest encaustic mixture can be made from adding pigments to beeswax, but there are several other recipes that can be used — some containing other types of waxes, damar resin, linseed oil, or other ingredients. Pure, powdered pigments can be purchased and used, though some mixtures use oil paints or other forms of pigment.

Metal tools and special brushes can be used to shape the paint before it cools, or heated metal tools can be used to manipulate the wax once it has cooled onto the surface. Today, tools such as heat lamps, heat guns, and other methods of applying heat allow artists to extend the amount of time they have to work with the material. Because wax is used as the pigment binder, encaustics can be sculpted as well as painted. Other materials can be encased or collaged into the surface, or layered, using the encaustic medium to adhere it to the surface.

Encaustic art has seen a resurgence in popularity since the 1990s with people using electric irons, hotplates and heated stylus on a variety of different surfaces including card, paper and even pottery. The iron makes producing a variety of artistic patterns elementary. However, the medium is not limited to just abstract designs, it can be used to create complex paintings, just as other media such as oil and acrylic.


The name encaustic comes from the Greek for ” burnt in ” …..

This is appropriate when considering the technique and it's specific application and creation.

I have searched for images of encaustic art but was not satisfied with what I found: the medium lends the ability to create great depth and luminosity. I will search until I find something that is worthy, or create something myself to post.

An upcoming trip to Lake Tahoe will provide ample inspiration for lanscapes, and certainly crisp luscious water with a thousands shades of blue.

Until next time, keep up the good art.
Pro Bono Creativity.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


Dear readers ~
What does it mean to call oneself "artist"?

Princeton's wordnet defines the term as "a person whose creative work shows sensitivity and imagination".
wikipedia states: "The definition of an artist is wide-ranging and covers a broad spectrum of activities to do with creating art, practising the arts and/or demonstrating an art. Debate, both historical and present day, suggests that defining the concept of an artist will continue to be difficult."

Hmm. That narrows it down!

Could it not also refer to how we process information, how we conduct ourselves in everyday life, how we apply ourselves each day towards a particular goal? Could being an "artist" describe how we behave?

Could it be that being an artist is as undefineable as the process of being human in this life? I submit that we are all artists in our own way. We have been endowed by the creator (whatever or whoever you deem that presence to be...) with cognitive ability. We can define, express, and impact others by word or deed, or simply by our creativity. It could be a beautifully crafted salt glazed vase, a haunting celtic melody delivered with an achingly fragile voice, or a positively three dimensional image captured upon a two dimensional surface that evokes the urge to engage via color, line, texture and ...something more.

Something more.

If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, then what is art? It seems art can be whatever each of us deems as beautiful.
The act of creating a piece of art can, in itself, be beautiful...can be interpreted as art.
We are coached to embrace the idea that our journey through life, through troubles, through challenges, is in itself the most important element. Therefore the creation and application of an artistic idea can itself be viewed in a similar manner.

"...The use of the concept of understanding in describing the appreciation of art marks out an interesting distinction between art and natural beauty. A person may understand or fail to understand T.S. Eliot's Four Quartets, Michelangelo's “David,” or Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, but he cannot understand or fail to understand the Highlands of Scotland..." from online Britannica Encyclopedia

Food for thought.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Create Your Brand New Day

Good afternoon artists.

As we move towards the weekend, with beautiful weather to entice us, it's difficult to focus on responsibilities, whether for work, or family, or to stay committed to our goals and plans to create and be productive.
I think this might be what we commonly call, "spring fever"!

I recommend enjoying yourself and the season, if you can (hayfever aside). Go outside, soak in the sun, or the pollen, as it were, and take in all that nature has to offer in the way of engaging and inviting scenery and inspiration.

I would like to invite you to some upcoming activities at The Gallery at Limetree, Vista Grove Shopping Center.

Next Thursday, April 24th, Artist Bruce Stebner returns to close his month long show of oils, watercolors, and American Faience pottery. Bruce is from Akron, Ohio, and offers clients a multitude of artistic options to enhance their homes and gardens. Murals, pottery for kitchen, garden, dining, oils and watercolors of provencial beaucolic images from France and Italy...truly a renaissance man.
He is also a great cook, and has a marvelous voice!

Join us for wine and hor d'oevres, meet the artist, meet new friends and mingle.

Also, be sure to mark your calendar for Saturday, May 3rd.
The Gallery will host artist and Master Pastelist Junko Ono Rothwell and her sister-in-law Nan Rothwell, a potter offering luscious salt glazed wares.
We'd love to have you join us, support a local artist and fellow AAC member, peruse the art, and chat with these talented individuals.

The Gallery
2840 LaVista Road
Decatur, GA 30033
located inside Limetree in Vista Grove Shopping Center

Bruce Stebner
Thursday, April 24th
6-8 pm

Junko Ono Rothwell and Nan Rothwell
Oils, Pastels and Salt Glazed Pottery
Saturday, May 3rd, 2008
All Day! Artists will be available from 12 until 5pm

If you're looking for an evening venue check out
Barefoot in the Park ~ Duluth Town Green
Gwinnett's Festival of Fine Arts, Performance and Flavors
4th Annual Gwinnett Arts Gala
Duluth, GA
Hosted/sponsored by the Gwinnett Council for the Arts and
The Hudgins Fine Art Center

Friday, April 18th, 2008

I have two extra tickets if you're interested!

Have a great weekend, bring your best artist attitude to the Monday Sketch group, and
we'll see you soon.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Aspirations, Motivation, Idealistic Views

Another rainy day, another opportunity for jotting down ideas for new artistic creations.

Have you ever done this exercise...
Write down 100 things that you LIKE:

I tried it and found that I could have continued waaayy past 100, but I know some people have trouble getting to 50.
Our perspective changes when we write something down, whether it be a goal, or a thought, or plans, or a recipe. It helps us to organize and clarify ideas in our mind so that when it comes time to apply, we have a better understanding and motivation for that application.

On to other thoughts...
I fee this is going to be a great year...lots of possibility, opportunity, time for changes, growth, and expansion of ideas and their applications.
New relationships, epiphanies to provide fuel for inspiration, and creative food for our artistic souls...that is what we have waiting for us this year, I believe!

Need an art venue to tour this weekend?
Check out The Atlanta Dogwood Festival, despite the rain!

Sunday Festival Hours: 10:00 AM - 8:00 PM
After the city’s announcement in February that the 72nd Atlanta Dogwood Festival could not take place in any city park including Piedmont Park or any streets adjacent to a city park, we are pleased to announce that the location for the 2008 Atlanta Dogwood Festival will be outside in front of Lenox Square. It’s a weekend filled with arts, live music, family and fun. See what has made the Atlanta Dogwood Festival the Southeast’s favorite springtime tradition.
The Atlanta Dogwood Festival is one of the largest and most diverse juried arts festivals in the country. More than 200 artists from around the country exhibit in 12 categories, including painting, glass, clay, wood and mixed media. Some of the country’s top painters, photographers, sculptors, leather and metal craftsmen, glass blowers and more will be participating in the 2008 Dogwood Festival Artist Market. In 2006, the Artist Market was ranked #16, out of the Top 200 Shows in the Country by Sunshine Artist's Magazine.

Maybe some of you have a booth there this weekend, but either way, it's always good to support the artists of the city of Atlanta.

I'm off for the afternoon; it time for some rest and relaxation.
Have a great rest of your weekend, stay dry and enjoy the rain!

Saturday, March 29, 2008

It was a dark and stormy...afternoon.

Hello all. Yes, it's been awhile since I've posted...things have been busy at The Gallery, and with life in general.

It's always good to see you in sketch class; Stephanie was our model du jour this past Monday, and either Kristin or Tina will join us on the 31st.

Here's an interesting Atlanta art venue you may wish to check out:

HENRY ASENCIO One-Man Show (see image above)

Vinings Gallery celebrates the return of contemporary painter

Henry Asencio for an exciting One-Man Show. They will feature Henry's latest

body of original paintings as well as a retrospective collection of limited edition works.

"Abstract expressionism" or "abstract realism", Asencio's work cannot be pigeonholed

by style or semantics. His open brushwork, sweeping color, use of texture and precise

drawing skills have resulted in a body of work that has earned him international accolades.

Friday, April 11, 20086:00pm - 9:00pm

Featuring a Live Model Charcoal Drawing Performance

Saturday, April 12, 20081:00pm - 4:00pm

Featuring a Live Model Oil Painting Performance

Salsa music will be playing to help give Henry Asencio a true welcome.

Please RSVP ~ call the gallery at 404-794-7762.

Gary Handler ~ Vinings Gallery

Here's an interesting website to check out for all your sketch artist ideas and inspirations.
Lots of interesting things to see; there are chat groups, forums, classes, more.

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend ~ see you on Monday if you join us, and talk to you soon.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Left or Right?

Something interesting for the brain on Palm Sunday, then it's time to think about making art, and enjoying the great outdoors!

Right Brain vs. Left Brain


This theory of the structure and functions of the mind suggests that the two different sides of the brain control two different "modes" of thinking. It also suggests that each of us prefers one mode over the other.


Experimentation has shown that the two different sides, or hemispheres, of the brain are responsible for different manners of thinking. The following table illustrates the differences between left-brain and right-brain thinking:

Left Brain

Logical, Sequential, Rational, Analytical, , ObjectiveLooks at parts

Right Brain

Random, Intuitive, Holistic, Synthesizing, Subjective, Looks at wholes

Most individuals have a distinct preference for one of these styles of thinking. Some, however, are more whole-brained and equally adept at both modes. In general, schools tend to favor left-brain modes of thinking, while downplaying the right-brain ones. Left-brain scholastic subjects focus on logical thinking, analysis, and accuracy. Right-brained subjects, on the other hand, focus on aesthetics, feeling, and creativity.

How Right-Brain vs. Left-Brain Thinking Impacts Learning

Curriculum--In order to be more "whole-brained" in their orientation, schools need to give equal weight to the arts, creativity, and the skills of imagination and synthesis.

Instruction--To foster a more whole-brained scholastic experience, teachers should use instruction techniques that connect with both sides of the brain. They can increase their classroom's right-brain learning activities by incorporating more patterning, metaphors, analogies, role playing, visuals, and movement into their reading, calculation, and analytical activities.

Assessment--For a more accurate whole-brained evaluation of student learning, educators must develop new forms of assessment that honor right-brained talents and skills.

Reading ~ Bernice McCarthy, The 4-MAT System: Teaching to Learning Styles with Right/Left Mode Techniques.

Now, this is wonderful information for someone who is striving to teach a particular subject to a diverse group of individuals. The sketch group has a leader, but not necessarily someone teaching. What is the best approach, and based on past applications, does it occur "by example", the leadership, or because one is chosen, or ...? Your thoughts are welcome.

Go outside and enjoy this wonderful blessing of a day. The sun is shining, the air is fresh and clean after the storms of Friday and Saturday, and it's warm...spring is on it's way. How about a hike, or a bike ride on the Silver Comet Trail, or walking in the park, or sketching there?
The choices are yours. Pick one and do it!

The point is, enjoy yourself, and your life.

Thursday, March 13, 2008


Hopefully we all set our clocks forward this past extra hour of daylight to give us art opportunities.

Here's a belated news flash ~ This evening The Gallery at Limetree is hosting local Intown Atlanta artist TJ Tucker. TJ's work is an interesting blend of carpentry and collage. Using found wooden objects like cigar boxes, cabinet doors, organizers and louvered shutters, he creates unique artwork. The pieces depict figures, mostly male, in various activities, mostly outdoors. There are usually animals, mostly birds, included in the images as well. Each piece offers interesting perspective, reflected mood and facial expression. If you are looking for a unique gift for a guy, this might be just the thing. Anyone interested in collecting unusual art pieces will appreciate the interesting use of paper, texture, carved wood, reflective or matte surfaces. Stop in and see...the artist will be here from 6:30pm until 8:00pm for a meet and greet, and there are always snacks and beverages to ease the flow of conversation.
Located at 2840 LaVista Road in Decatur, just north of Clairmont, inside Limetree.
Call for directions or details: 404-633-0982

TJ's show will be available for viewing through Tuesday, March 25th.

Did you see the snow on Saturday? Of course you did. It was quite a flurry, and the wind was not very friendly! I had the opportunity to spend time at Lake Lanier with a groups of friends; we watched the flakes swirl from the dining room and kitchen and marveled...spring is so close, and yet...!
It seems that here in Georgia we always get at least one more cold snap before Easter, and often on Easter weekend. Brrr. I am not a cold weather person, at all.

I wanted to share a website with all of you if you are ever searching for used books:

All you need is the book title, or author's name, or best of all, an ISBN number, and this site will pull the best pricing from ALL used book internet vendors. It's great! I found it invaluable when working on my business degree, and it is a great way to find art books for the very best price. Hardbound, paperbacks, your choice, this place will find it for you. Fast.

Speaking of fast...have you filled up your gas tank today? OUCH!
Nearly a $1.00 more than this time last year. I am really considering ways to invest in a motorcycle or skooter: riding a bike would be great, but far more dangerous for commuting since the majority of our great city of Atlanta is not biker-friendly.
Check out to find the best deals.
I'm so glad I invested in a 4-cylinder engine the last time I purchased a new vehicle.

One more thing ~ Atlanta was named number 4 in the nation as the best place to find a job. That means our local economy is strong, and growing. Good news for anyone with a product or service to offer (that would include all artists!).

Have a great afternoon; it's beautiful again today, go make art!