- The leading comprehensive survey of Top 25 UK Arts & Culture Blogs has been reviewed and revised by creativetourist.com (Creativetourist). Making A Mark remains at #3 - thanks to all my old & new followers! I'm very grateful to all readers and subscribers for helping me achieve and retain this position. Making A Mark has also broken into the top 30 art blogs worldwide.
The Top 25 UK Arts & Culture Blogs. Online now: the October edition of the Top 25 UK Arts & Culture Blogs. Guardian favourites and a slew of independent bloggers racing up the charts – it’s all here.
Wet evening at Burlington House
sketched from the leather sofas of the Friends Room,
sketched from the leather sofas of the Friends Room,
Royal Academy of Arts
Brushes iPad app and iPad
copyright Katherine Tyrrell
Brushes iPad app and iPad
copyright Katherine Tyrrell
- I bought an iPad on Wednesday (does this mean I now qualify as a confirmed Apple fan?). On Friday I drew my very first ever digital sketch using the Brushes iPad app on Friday while sat in the Friends Room at the Royal Academy. When I started this post there was just the small business of now needing to work out how to get it off the iPad! I'd not yet got that far in The Missing Manual! However in wanting to post it to my sketchbook blog - see Wet evening at Burlington House- I worked out I could get it off by sending it to Flickr. I hope to be reviewing the iPad Brushes App when I've used it more (bear in mind I got this far with no manual whatsoever!) - and would be interested to know what else other people are using for their digital sketching.
- I stepped down today (see A Birthday and a Goodbye) from two years of being the blogmaster for UKCPS News, the blog of the UK Coloured Pencil Society. I'm currently nurturing a new and related development which I'm hoping to say more about in the near future.
Drawing and sketching
- Drawing as an End, Not a Means is about an exhibition by veteran abstract painter Thomas Nozkowski. It's also about Drawing to Cool Down. However it's interesting because it focuses on drawing as a means of resolving emotional entanglements with paintings - and relates to drawing at the end rather than the beginning. What's especially interesting is that Nozkowski, having been taught by Abstract Expressionists, believes in the principle of avoiding the preparatory sketch and any preconception of where to go with a painting and the act of painting as a 'hot' activity. He has started to use drawing as a cool-down exercise rather than a warm-up. The show features 19 pairs of works, each one a painting and a smaller, corresponding work on paper in ink, pencil and gouache. I guess this may perplex those who think anything done with a brush is a painting rather than a drawing?
- Paul (Learning to See) is back posting again - see Sargent Portrait Copy, Part 4: Light, Value and Form
- Elizabeth Blackadder RSA, RSW, RA is one my favourite painters - and this is an interview with her The quiet passion of Scottish painter Elizabeth Blackadder (sadly no images!)
- Marion Boddy-Evans (Marion's Painting Blog) asks Is a Single-Color Painting Art?
- a nice post Subtle Skies by Terry Miura (Studio Notes) which combines a commentary on painting skies, memory painting and emotional triggers
- Here are some painter's blogs which caught my eye this week long enough to make a note of their URL
- I'm liking Kelly Sanford's blog Fresh off the Easel. Her flower paintings have a fresh observational approach.
- Lots to admire in Becky Joy's (Becky Joy's Fine Art) blog - love Winter Light on Trees and her sunset and raincloud paintings
- Dreama Tolle Perry's (Dreama's Day to Day Paintings and Writings) - I do like a blog where the artist writes as well as paints
- Paintings of Australia by Mike Barr (Mike Barr)
- I've not spotted the Palette Knife Painters blog before - and it's a great idea. It's been up and running since April and is another community blog a bit like Daily Painters.
- In Islington, Hackney and Spitalfields the street art is on the walls - see Further Adventures of Ben Eine
- This is the website and blog of the Pre Raphaelite Society - an international society for the study of the lives and art of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.
- It great to see one of favourite UK pastel artists Felicity House on the front cover of the November edition of Artists & Illustrators magazine - which features an article about The Pastel Society. She's got a course in exploring pastels coming up in December and comes highly recommended by me.
- Susan Roden's Pastels contains amazing pastel paintings of skies - and cupcakes(!) - by Susan Roden
- Loriann Signori blogged about moving the grisaille to a new place
- I very much liked Marla Baggetta's recent Variations - it's another example of painting the same place over and over again
- I took a look this week at the websites of the jurors for the recent exhibition by the International Association of Pastel Societues and you can see the results in Contemporary Pastel Landscape Artists
Round about now the wildife and bird artists in the UK are totally absorbed by the migrant birds arriving for winter
- This is Robert Fuller's blog - Robert E Fuller - a day in the life of a wildlife artist which packs in lots of references to opportunities for learning more about wildlife art
- Tim Wootton (Tim Wootton Wildlife Art) is painting birds up in Orkney - including Arctic Skuas. Although posts are not ferquent they are very high quality when they appear - and include lots of practical commentary about observing and painting birds.
Art Business and Marketing
- How to use an iPad as your artist's portfolio triggered guess what! I blame it all on Big Dave! Warning - having now been exposed and infected I counsel against going anywhere near an iPad unless your purse can take the strain or you're getting ready to write your note to Santa explaining what you want to see in your Christmas stocking this year. I've already had a note from Bridget Hunter to say she's also been out to buy one so be warned - this is infectious!
- How to Curate a Show in 10 Easy Steps by is an article by About.com's new Fine Arts Guide Susan Kendzulak - it's a recommended read for all those with little or no training in putting on art exhibitions.
- ArtFagCity - Taking Stock of Art Making in The Age of “I’m A Child of The Internet”
- This post - Mistake Math – Why We’re Valuing Facebook Fans All Wrong - makes complete sense to me - and is why I've never pursued the gathering of "friends" on Facebook.
Remember, the goal isn’t to be good at Facebook. The goal is to be good at business because of Facebook. And on that front, we’ve totally overvalued “likes”.
- Guardian Technology had a post last week about Britain's £100bn internet economy leading the world in online shopping You can also read the Boston Consulting Group's full report which they are referencing - The Connected Kingdom. It's certainly cause for some pause for thought by those selling art in the UK. The BCG is one of the world's leading advisers on business strategy (and their name always takes me right back to my MBA days!)
The country has the biggest e-commerce market in the world when measured by the amount spent per capita, BCG found.
Art and the Economy, Art Fairs and Art Collectors
- Just in case you missed it here's that well know art collector - the former candidate for leadership of the Labour Party, David Milliband and his amazing dancing women. I wonder what the artist Michelle Dovey thinks of the press coverage.
- There seems to be a spate of fakes at the moment - or maybe just the discovery of them?
- A man was recently jailed for selling fake works "by Tracy Emin"
- Two art sleuths have uncovered a fake Wyeth watercolour painting up for sale at Christies. The painting was 'outed' when a Seattle dealer who had recently sld the painting and the collections manager at the Brandywine Museum — where most of the Wyeth records are kept.
- This Guardian article summarises the situation - Christie's caught up as £30m forgeries send shock waves through the art world
- The biggest art fair in the north of England Buy Art Fair was held last week at Spinningfields in Manchester. It finishes today - see The Arts Are All Right. Buy Art Fair opens. for a review of it.
Art Competitions and Art Societies
It's a busy time for calls for entries, deadline reminders and listings of who's got into what and my blog has been very biased towards open exhibitions and art competitions this week
- 65 Artists selected for Lynn Painter-Stainers Prize 2010 - is another one of my 'list' posts where you can see a list of the names of the artists selected and follow the link I've inserted back to a website which is representative of their work
- Call for Entries: Royal Watercolour Society Open Competition 2011 - this is a major open exhibition targeted at artists working in water soluble paints
- CPSA Explore This 7! call for entries The Colored Pencil Society of America (CPSA) issued a call for entries for the seventh Annual Online Exhibition - Explore This! back in September. There's now just over two weeks left to the deadline.
- This is a link to the online exhibition of the International Association of Pastel Societies - 17th Juried Exhibition 2010
|Sunday Times Watercolour Competition: Visiting Clovelly by Juliette Palmer|
Art Exhibitions and Art Fairs
- On Friday I had intended to go and see a Japanese Botanical Artist at Kew Gardens but the weather dictated otherwise and I went to see the preview of “Pioneering Painters: The Glasgow Boys, 1880-1900” which opened at the Royal Academy of Art yesterday. Prior to this it has been the most popular art exhibition ever held at the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow - where it generated and unprecedented £1 million in income! Not a lot of reviews as yet - and I'm thinking this might possibly be because critics like me could do with being a bit more knwledgeable about the Glasgow Boys! For me it is recommended exhibition as it includes some absolutely stunning paintings. I'll have a blog post about the exhibition later this week and I also intend to do some posts about their art and in particular their paintings of rural life and urban realism - in the meantime here are the comments so far.
- The Guardian - slideshow of some of the paintings Northern exposure: Glasgow Boys hit the Royal Academy
- The Guardian - The Glasgow Boys: Pioneering Painters
- The Independent - Pioneering Painters: The Glasgow Boys 1880-1900, Royal Academy, London
- The Telegraph: The Glasgow Boys: bordering on a breakthrough is mostly an interesting commentary on art sales of Scottish paintings
The Glasgow Boys' achievement was to be the most significant non-metropolitan movement in Britain's visual arts in the past 200 years (not forgetting the now more fashionable Scottish colourists who came soon after). Their best pictures are pleasing and tender and use colour beautifully.
- Making and Unmaking in Contemporary Sculture Exhibition is at the Henry Moore Institute-Leeds (30th Sept 2010-2nd Jan 2011)
- Dulwich Picture Gallery has Norman Rockwell's America starting in six weeks time (15 December 2010 - 27 March 2011)
Art Education / workshops / Tips and techniques
Classes and Workshops
- Art Plantae highlights this botanical art workshop opportunity in Wales - RHS Medal Winner Teaches Watercolor Course for Beginners
- and this one in Hawaii - Botanical Illustration in Hawaii with Alice Tangerini and Wendy Hollender
- The Creative Block has a great post about being open to working in groups - Encourage each other and build each other up!
when that uncommon spirit of encouragement and generosity happen with a group of artists, sparks fly, courage grows, art expands!
- Richard McKinley (The Pastel Pointers Blog) has a useful post about Painting Evaluation | Know the Goals
- Vivien Blackburn (Paintings, Prints and Stuff) shows you how to avoid 'heavy looking trees' using watercolour techniques - splattering and drawing with paint
- Mitchell Albala (Essential Concepts of Landscape Painting) has a follow up to the chapter 11 in his book about abstracting nature - see Abstracting Nature Demonstration – Genesis and Development of an Abstract Landscape. While I think Mitchell's blog is excellent - and I don't normally comment on people's blog style - I'm increasingly feeling that a dominant dark background doesn't work so well on a blog focused on landscape painting. This comment was triggered in part by the discussion in this post of colour studies. Am I wrong?
Art History & Art Museums
- Here's a post from College Crunch about the 11 most famous fakes in art history
- This is Charley Parker's (Lines and Colors) recent post about Van Gogh’s self-portraits
- Bridget Hunter (Bridget Hunter Paintings) is Painting in the attic!
- Do let me know if you post a picture of your studio or where you work
- Pastel and pencil artist Lesley Crawford (Lesley Crawford) followed up on her good ideas for storing pastels by sending me a wonderful description and set of photos of How to create a Lazy Susan Coloured Pencil Holder - which I posted this week on Making A Mark Reviews.
- Cathy Johnson has a Flickr set of Watercolor Boxes and Palettes
- Charley Parker (Lines and Colors) has an excellent review of books about learning to draw. Learning to draw: where to go from here
- This is a New York Times Sunday Book Review: ‘Grant Wood: A Life’ by R. Tripp Evans - which is one of the books you'll see in The Top Ten Fine Art Books in October - which you'll see tomorrow. It discussses his most famous painting American Gothic.
Grant Wood - Self-Portrait
- It also includes another book which I KNOW will be included in a lot of people's seasonal wishlists.
- In the meantime I've got to confess that my intended aim this month of reviewing art books about drawing and painting people got totally side-swiped this month by a rather disagreeable incident. However, moving on, I shall be returning to this project as soon as possible.
- Huffington Post has an interesting post about Creative Commons - Ask GYST: Public Domain Images Get a Mark
- Never Satisfied is a great post by Robert Genn about the four main types of creative dissatisfaction and their antidotes.
- Tracy Wall - has a couple of interesting posts discussing our addiction to checking for messages and the impact this has on our art.
- Have you tried flexing the size of your images on Blogger? See the impact it's had on Ohla Pryymak's work on her blog Olechko. See Making a Mark post featuring the Blue Chairs
- For those using Google Groups for marketing purposes, you should note the big red notice about how Google Groups will no longer be supporting Files!
Google Groups will no longer be supporting the Pages and Files features. Starting January 13, you won't be able to upload new content, but you will still be able to view and download existing content. See this announcement for more information and other options for storing your content.
- Feedblitz News has announced List Building for Bloggers: An email marketing series for social media #LBB
- wearesocial has detailed The state of social: 10 key stats. A very interesting perspective on social media status within companies
Last night the clocks went back. So we're now back to Greenwich Mean Time here in London. I think this is the bit of the year where were are out of synch on normal time differences for a short while.
Meanwhile Art Spoofs: American Gothic is an amazing film on YouTube documenting all the various types of creativity sparked by Grant Wood's American Gothic painting. Who knew?