May
12
2010

Jerry's Knows the Average Joe by TMNK

 


Forgive me if this sounds like an advertisement or some sort of paid endorsement. It's not. Jerry's Art Arama is, for this artist, more than a corporate entity that merchandises the art supplies we use. They're real people who dig art and have made a business from supporting that which they love.


I was discovered by one of the owners of Jerry's on the streets of New York. And shortly thereafter he and his wife began to collect my art. They never tried to pressure me to switch from purchasing my supplies from "The House the Oyster Built." Instead, they just offered to be a resource for exposing me to new products and supplies, and continued to be patrons. More importantly, my new found friend was always accessible, responsive, and supportive.


So, I of course have links on my blog to Jerry's, and have featured their logo on some of my exhibition flyers and web page. It's the least I could do. Besides it being an expression of the friendship I feel, it's just good business, one hand washing the other. But as an artist, I'm not much into promoting corporate interests, business out to just profit off the little guy. But like I've said, from day one, my experience with Jerry's has been that these are "real people" who, like myself, are in the business of art, but REALLY love art, artists, and collectors. Art is in there blood, literally.


So, why now, do I decide to write this, what amounts to a public endorsement? Well, much like my initial encounter with Jerry's, just call it fate. I was at the building hosting the G40 - The Summit exhibit, working on my Installation, when I decided to take a walk around and check out the other artists. That's when I encountered Joe Iurato and the awesome mural he was painting.



As I scanned the area trying to get a sense of what he used to create his work (as I am always trying to learn, grow, get inspired), I saw a plastic bag laying on the floor that looked like... Could it be? Yes it was, Jerry's Artarama. I smiled a private smile, and walked over and said "Yo, Joe, you get your supplies from them too?" His reply, and I quote, "Dude, they're the greatest, I love Jerry's, I'm there all the time." I smiled and shared my Jerry's story with him, then snapped this picture.


It made for the perfect story for me to share with my patron, the unofficial sponsor of G40. In this day of ATM machines and corporate entities with their overseas customer service call centers, it's special to have a relationship with a business that cares about the "Average Joe" and a "nobody" like me.
MeNobodyKnows.com
May
12
2010

Why I Love the Renaissance by Heather Goldstein

 


One of my favorite painters of all time is Jan van Eyck because of his amazing attention to detail and impeccable technical ability. Jan van Eyck was a Flemish painter known for his oil paintings on wood panel in which he used a glazing technique to create realistic, extremely well executed, precise, objective descriptions of what he saw. He was one of the best Northern Renaissance painters of the 15th century. My favorite painting of his is the Arnolfini Wedding. The couple represented has been traditionally identified as Giovanni Arnolfini and his wife, Giovanna Cenami.

Why is this one of my favorite paintings? Where do I start? One of my favorite things about Renaissance art, in general, is its symbolism. A painting may be worth a thousand words, but a Renaissance painting is a epic novel! So, for our art history lesson for the day....

Giovanni Arnolfini holds his wife's right hand in his left, which symbolizes a marriage between people of different classes. The side of the room he stands on is by the window, open to the world where men work, while Giovanna is close to the domestic interior where the "woman's role" takes place being a wife and mother. The room is ruffled with religious details such as the convex mirror that has been interpreted as the all seeing eye of God and the roundels decorating it with details from the Passion of Christ.

There are crystal prayer beads on the wall, Saint Margaret (protector of women in childbirth) is carved on the chair next to the bed, the single lit candle in the chandelier could reprent Christ's presence, and the fruit in the window alludes to both fertility and possibly the fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden.

Some more symbolism:
-Discarded shoes signify the sanctity of marriage/ holy ground
-Dog represents fidelity
-The woman is not pregnant, but rather painted as the current queen who was pregnant at the time
-Red is, of course, a loaded color. It represents love and passion, but also cruelty and blood. In this painting, the former is usually used as the interpretation.

This painting has numerous interpretations and objects to interpret. I love it because every time I look at it, I find something new! But I will end with the best part of the painting... the back wall! It is believed that this painting was used as some sort of legal document, possibly a pictorial power of attorney. There are two figures painted in the mirror. One is a man in a red turban, possibly Jan van Eyck, and another unknown male. They are the witnesses to the betrothal. The final clue is the very clever signature. Above the mirror it says, "Johannes de eyck fuit hic 1434." This translates to "Jan van Eyck was here 1434." At only 33"x22.5" this painting is absolutely incredible!
May
12
2010

Three Steps to being a Better Painter in Three Months by Mike Rooney

 


Here's a three step list of things that are guaranteed to make you a better painter.
Paint.
Paint.
Paint.
There's no substitute for painting. Reading about it won't do it, watching DVDs incessantly won't do it, and taking workshops one behind the other won't do it either.

If you would challenge yourself to paint at least five times a week, i know for a fact that you'd be so much better in three months that you'd be ashamed of what you've done up to this point in your art career.

How do i know this?

Personal experience.

It started when i read a book on painting by Kevin McPherson and he stated that to get really good, you needed to do 100 "starts," which are small paintings where you block-in the scene. Finishing is not important. It's getting the big shapes in, in the proper value and color note. They should only take about 45 minutes to complete.

The rub was that you had to do it in 90 days. thats one a day and two on some days. what i learned from this was that you could see the vast improvement for yourself from #1 to #50 and then from #50 to #100. It was awe inspiring. The fringe benefit was that i learned painting discipline and to not let errands, or personal issues, or lack of inspiration derail me. I was going to do it! some days i had to do four to catch up if i HAD to take a day or two off from painting for something important.

four years later i still love to paint at least one painting everyday! and all you have to do is look at my stuff from four years ago and you'll see that painting, painting, painting is the sure-fire way to get better in a short period of time.

So go do #1 today and don't stop 'til you hit 100 three months from now! You'll be glad you did!

Take the challenge and post your work on our Flickr Page

Mike Rooney Painting Every Day

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