Art Quote for the Day


Do I want a severe vocabulary to express myself, eliminating shades of gray, and eschewing the full spectrum? A constrained palette will compel me to make every mark unequivocal, force me to be decisive, take from me any hiding place.  Is this what I want? Need I come so bare to the creative encounter?

With black and white I can get  directly to the bones of things. I can touch structure, reason, form, and do so raw.  With color, I have climate and atmosphere. With color I can tune more exactly feeling, mood, can soak form in color, I can fill space with affective light, leaning on my audience to sway them to see it my way.  I can color their experience, nudge them in my direction.

Why not let it all go?  Why be so exclusive and hard on myself?  Why not let everything in?  Life is teeming with outrageous variety, embarrassing behavior: why should I restrain myself?  When an infinite circus is whirling around me, why should I be so timid in my  choices?  Is severe choice a failure of imagination, timidity of spirit, or quite the contrary?  On the other hand, is there not something grand in making judicious choices and being satisfied with that?  When everyone else is grabbing everything they can get their hands on, isn’t it rather brave to be reserved?

There are many other telling sites at which we may make our cross-section cut of the world.  With each question, at each cut, we begin to appreciate the enormous power of expression at our disposal inherent in all media.  The important feature in choice of media is not what medium we use but what statement we wish to make .  Then we may ask ourselves what substance to choose as our ally in saying what needs saying.

It would be useful to shift the association we make with the materials that artists employ from the static inventory of things inferred by the term art supplies to the more dynamic and intermediary qualities implied by the term media. Exploring the implications of this transposition further, we can say a number of things about how media serve expression.

Media are things that transform thought  into action.  All things when moved from the domain of thought to the physical domain exist in time, place, substance, and movement. Every medium therefore consists of these four qualities.  The basic character of each medium is determined by the degree to which each quality is exploited. It is important to note  that every medium has infinite potential in each category – time, place, substance, and movement.  And it is we who choose to manifest any one or more of its potential qualities and conversely to delimit the active expressive presence of others.

No More Secondhand Art – Awakening the Artist Within by Peter London

Art Quote of the Day


Variety is the counterweight to harmony, the other side of organization essential to unity.  Although an artist might bring a work together with harmony, it is variety that imparts individuality, arousing the viewer’s curiosity and holding his or her attention.  It creates visual contrast – a separation of elements and images.  Like a good sheepdog that singles out one animal from the flock, the introduction of variety actively separates areas or images to make them more exciting and let them stand apart.

If an artist creates a work using a complete equality of visual forces, the work may feel static, lifeless, and unemotional. Visual boredom is a sign of an overly harmonious composition.  By adding degrees of variation, the artist introduces essential ingredients ( such as diversion or change) for sustaining attention.

Visual interest, then, results directly from adding variety to the composition.  Variety causes visual separation – a pulling apart of related elements or images, differentiating and disassociating the componenets.  This separation is achieved through the use of contrast and elaboration.

Art Fundamentals – Theory and Practice by Ocvirk,Stinson,Wigg, Bone, Cayton

As a teacher of 2-dimensional design, I emphasize the fact that Variety, as one of the unifying principals of design is important to the completion of a successfully designed image. If you go to my blogsite , then follow me on Pinterest you’ll find a board that is labelled , APPLES. I have a quote that , very early on I posted as a quote of the day, dealing with this idea. It goes something like this: Art is about making choices… take a simple subject like an apple. Is it red or green? shrivelled , bruised , fresh, is it the BIG APPLE or the apple that the witch gave Snow White? The quote goes on , but eventually points out that with each decision made about that apple you change the meaning of the art. I decided to use this ideas and collect images of apples and on my Pinterest page you’ll find numerous examples. Enjoy! And for your own amusement, pick a simple object and set to creating imagery using assorted media you may have, collage, pencil, paint, makeup, finger nail polish, anything and everything will work if you keep an open mind!