Monthly Archives: May 2015

Light and Space in Contemporary Art

From bright sunlight to the small flame of a candle, humans are drawn to light and we cherish it. While architects have a long history of using the power of light to achieve their goals studio artists have traditionally been … Continue reading

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From Still to Moving Image

Kineographs, phenakistoscopes, mutoscopes, zoetropes, zoopraxiscopes, thaumatropes, even flip books – quite a mouthful. What all these devices have in common is that they take a series of still images and create the illusion of motion. They are all precursors to … Continue reading

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What’s In A Line? Agnes Martin and Sean Scully

Here are two artists known for their paintings of lines and stripes arranged in simple geometric compositions. At first you might think that their paintings would look very similar but this is not the case. One artist makes compositions that … Continue reading

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I’m Not Whom I Seem: Fictitious Portraits

Last week I began an exploration into the art of portraiture. At the beginning of the post I asked some questions about the nature of the portrait. I think it’s useful to look at those questions again. Why create a … Continue reading

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Pattern and Decoration

In the world of art and design patterns are everywhere – from decorative embellishments to primary motifs. Pattern is so essential to design and visual communication that we have devoted an entire chapter to it in our book Design: A … Continue reading

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Portraits In The Age of Selfies

What is a portrait? Is it just a faithful rendering of a person. And if so, in the age of cellphone cameras, is there a need for anything more? Why create a portrait in the first place? Is it to … Continue reading

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Letting Your Eyes Feel the Texture

Let’s look at and compare the work of two artists we include on our Pinterest boards. Both artists use clay and both emphasize the element of texture. At first you might think their work would be similar in appearance but … Continue reading

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The Ideal Palace of the Postman Cheval

Where do ideas come from? Isn’t this the question all artists want answered? For the Postman Cheval inspiration appeared one day in 1877 when he tripped on a stone as he made his daily mail deliveries. “I was walking very … Continue reading

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Josef Albers: The Interaction of Color

When we look at individual colors our perception of them is strongly influenced by their environment including the adjacent or surrounding colors and the ambient light on the scene. Artists and designers routinely incorporate aspects of this phenomena in their … Continue reading

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