The Art of finding the perfect present

Why gifting original art is a brilliant idea

Some people absolutely love shopping for presents; I personally struggle a bit. And don’t get me wrong, I do love receiving and offering presents. However, choosing the right ones is a different story. I always try to buy something that is practical and useful, personal and at an affordable price. I also try to avoid ordinary or useless items that clutter my friends’ selves and cupboards. Although there is no magical solution for finding the perfect present, here is a brilliant idea: Buy original art.

Continue reading “The Art of finding the perfect present”

Tips for writing an Art Blog that people love

Build a community around your art work

We recently explored the advantages of writing an art blog; it is true though that not all art blogs are equally successful. It takes some skill in writing, some good content, imaginative presentation and a few other bits and bobs to attract an audience. In this article we will see how you could possibly start an art blog and gradually build a community of people who love your content and are always keen to spend a few minutes reading your articles.

Continue reading “Tips for writing an Art Blog that people love”

JANE – 2

25/06/2018

Last week unfortunately I had to skip my life drawing class and today it felt really awkward the first ten minutes; I thought I had forgotten to hold the charcoal stick! I was trying to refresh my memory as to how we draw the ribcage, what I had learnt about the skull and mainly how do we put all this together. Th bright side is that after a few wrong lines I slowly got up to speed again.

Our model today was Jane. Jane was the first model I ever sketched and this truly a good opportunity for me (and yourself if you wish!) to look back and see the progress I have made the past few months (see JANE).

As usually the model did three short poses. Finally, the class picked their favourite one as the long pose; we picked pose number three. Lets go through them one by one.

For the first pose Jane was sat on a table with her legs crossed. This pose gave me a good sight of her torso and breast. I tried to quickly sketch and remind myself the structure of the head and the Ribcage (and mainly how these affect the skin of the body). I am quite happy with this pose as we didn’t spend more than 7 minutes.

36042829_1244913082309118_6335916668224536576_n.jpg

For the second pose Jane stayed on the table however she turned her back towards my side. I spent less than five minutes sketching this pose as in the meanwhile I had a quick chat with my tutor. She pointed out that my lines should be less heavy and bold! I spent most of my time sketching the model’s left foot. Feet are always a challenge! Apparently, the model appears to wide here but as mentioned before, I am not too worried as this served mainly as a warm up for the longer pose.36176870_1244913152309111_163261482266525696_n.jpg

For the third pose Jane returned pretty much to her original position; main difference being that instead of crossing her legs she now had a stool to support her right leg, while the left one was touching the floor. I couldn’t see her right arm almost at all. As before, I had a good view of her torso and legs. In my first attempt (short pose) I didn’t make any effort to sketch the legs. I only focused on the upper structure. As you can see below (drawing on the left hand side) the sketch is quite technical – I tried to put together previous knowledge before starting the long pose.36283152_1244913288975764_902433458511413248_n.jpg

Finally, after a quick tea break (actually it was fizzy drinks and cheese snacks break…) we went back in class to start with our long pose. The class decided pose number 3 was the preferable one (and I totally agreed). This time I did spend time drawing the whole body, including legs and upper structure as well. I was lightly criticized by my tutor for being too technical and strict with my drawing but at this stage I would like to learn the structure and then allow myself to go crazy with colour and lines. I had the time to add some tone too to satisfy myself with a complete drawing.

36188140_1244913385642421_8428096801197785088_n


The Artist says:

28407451_1162363890564038_455176961_o“It is so amazing when you start studying the human anatomy before you go to the next class. You gain an understanding of how things work together and then instead of just sketching individual shapes and planes you understand how the body structure works as a whole!

 

 

 

Art is more fun when you meet the artists themselves! Visit THE ARTIST…

 

CHROMA

Love Sketching & Painting

Παρουσίαση2

 

 

JOANNA – 2

11/05/2018

This was the second Monday Joanna modeled for us. The session was quite interesting in terms of new knowledge. Once more, our tutor spent more time with myself and another guy who is a beginner; she taught us the proportions and structure of the skull. Recently we studied the ribcage (read: Human Anatomy 1 – The Ribcage) and now we were ready to build up on the structure above.

35430749_1235067379960355_4680724405075050496_n

We started sketching the top of the cranium trying to replicate the curvature. The tutor pointed out that the curve gets steeper at the rear side. Once the top was done we then carried on to sketch the rear side and the front side. We had to check the angle of the outline of the skull and finally close the shape at the bottom and middle of the cranium. It’s worth mentioning that this point is the “hole” for the ear!

35425775_1235067613293665_7197869003409195008_n.jpg

Once the cranium was in place we had to roughly sketch the front part of the skull; the area where all the facial features appear. For the sake of speed and understanding we sketched that as a simple tube. Also, extra care was needed for the eye sockets and nose but we will look at this more carefully in following sessions. I am aiming to study the skull myself in detail one of the following weeks.

35521611_1235067203293706_2246405334761472_n.jpg

When we had a good grasp of the outline and volumes of the skull we moved on to sketch from life. So Joanna, being our model, offered some interesting angles and poses for us to sketch her head.

35518022_1235067063293720_6514896206081032192_n.jpg

We were asked to sketch her head as a simple orthogonal box. Just that. Give the orientation and the planes we could see. Then we had to elaborate and fit the cranium and face volumes within that box. We had to remember that the volume of the neck happens behind the “tube” of the face and under the volume of the cranium.

 


The Artist says:

28407451_1162363890564038_455176961_o“It is so amazing when you start studying the human anatomy before you go to the next class. You gain an understanding of how things work together and then instead of just sketching individual shapes and planes you understand how the body structure works as a whole!

 

 

 

Art is more fun when you meet the artists themselves! Visit THE ARTIST…

 

CHROMA

Love Sketching & Painting

Παρουσίαση2

 

 

Colour Theory – Basics

COLOUR WHEEL

THE FOUNDATION OF COLOUR THEORY

I recently decided to teach myself the basics of colour theory; I started with the colour wheel. This provides the fundamental background of colour combination and allows you to further develop techniques. In following articles we will explore other aspects of colour mixing and combination.

Materials:

Keep it as simple as possible. The aim is to explore the colours and their combinations, not to make the most beautiful colour wheel ever created.  Allow for 1.5 hours.

  • A small brush (any type will do),
  • Yellow Acrylic Paint
  • Blue Acrylic Paint
  • Red Acrylic Paint
  • Canvas (canvas pad – easier and cheeper for this exercise)
  • A pencil and a rubber

 

…fundamental background of colour combination…allows you to further develop techniques.

The principle of the colour wheel is very simple. You start using the three basic colours; red, yellow and blue. These colours are called the primary colours and are the base and main components of every other colour. Having these three and mixing them in different quantities allows you to mix any other colour. The primary colours wheel is the one right below.

20180523_191822.jpg

Once you have created the primary colours wheel then, we are ready to start mixing those three together to create our second colour wheel; the wheel of secondary colours. The colours sitting opposite each other in the secondary colour wheel are called complementary colours (this will be useful for creating shadows – see next article). As you might already know mixing the primary colours with each other gives you a first set of very useful colours: Orange, Green and Purple.

  • Blue + Yellow = Green
  • Red + Yellow = Orange
  • Blue + Red = Purple

20180523_192829.jpg

The second step has now been made. We have our secondary colours filling the second wheel. Final step is to create a third colour which will be filled with the tertiary colours. As you can easily guess, mixing the primary colours in different quantities (exactly as you did for the secondary colours above) gives you greens, purples and oranges of different strength. So here you can experiment and create colours you like more by mixing slightly more blue, or a bit more yellow or maybe a bit more red? Create as many mixes you like. For the sake of this exercise I created only a couple of each combination.

20180523_214232defde.jpg

 

A quick summary of the previous steps is here:

  • Primary colours are: Yellow, Blue, Red
  • Secondary colours are: Orange, Green, Purple
  • Tertiary colours are: The combinations of primary colours  using different quantities of each colour. Create Yellowish Green or Blueish Purple etc.

 


The Artist says:

28407451_1162363890564038_455176961_o“I have been passionate about painting since I remember myself. I started by just eexperimenting with colours, colour mixing and colour application. However , it’s not always easy to achieve what you want unless you know exactly what you are doing. Techniques are different for different media; colour theory though is the basis of painting and is the same for everything! I decided to teach myself the basics; and here I am sharing that with you!

 

 

 

 

Art is more fun when you meet the artists themselves! Visit THE ARTIST…

CHROMA

Love Sketching & Painting

Παρουσίαση2

 

JOANNA – 1

04/06/2018

This Monday’s drawing session was very enjoyable! We had a new model, a middle aged yoga instructor, Joanna. Joanna had a thin but well shaped figure. During this class we did three different poses during which I put in practice my Human Anatomy – Ribcage studies.

The session started with a 5 min pose; the model was lying down, leaning against a low chair. This was literally a warm up exercise for me as I had not drawn from life for almost two weeks. You will notice that proportions and tone are not great. I was not too worried though as I knew it is just a quick introduction to the session.

34601342_1226687630798330_2051017793473609728_n.jpg

The second, was a sitting pose. I was sat behind and to the side of the model so I had a good view of her ribs and  side of  legs. In reality I could only see a very limited amount of her back as that was hidden by the chair. I didn’t bother sketching the chair. I focused on capturing right the pose of the body and the relationship of the head with the shoulders and back. I quite enjoyed sketching the cross leg. Again this pose lasted for less than 10 minutes so I was not too worried about detailing.

34489035_1226687620798331_3956991852711772160_n.jpg

The last pose was again a sitting one, however the model was now on the floor. The chair used previously was now just supporting her one arm leaving the rest of the body visible to detail. I had a brilliant view of her torso and her legs. I am  pleased I didn’t change my position during the break as with this pose I had the opportunity to properly sketch the ribcage and then develop the skin on top of that. Please notice the plane on top of which the head is based. See the connections of the collar bones to the shoulders and how the muscle extends to her breast. I am also quite happy with how the legs turned out. Although I appreciate the drawing is not perfect (ie not even touched tone) I am very satisfied that last week’s hard work studying the ribcage and the upper body structure assisted with this drawing here.

…notice the plane on top of which the head is based. See the connections of the collar bones to the shoulders…

 

34439609_1226701987463561_3947140520584675328_n


The Artist says:

28407451_1162363890564038_455176961_o“It is so amazing when you start studying the human anatomy before you go to the next class. You gain an understanding of how things work together and then instead of just sketching individual shapes and planes you understand how the body structure works as a whole!

 

 

 

Art is more fun when you meet the artists themselves! Visit THE ARTIST…

 

CHROMA

Love Sketching & Painting

Παρουσίαση2

 

 

JULIAN 3

21/05/2018

As mentioned in the previous article (see Julian 2), I realised how important is to know what actually lies underneath the skin. Having a good understanding of the anatomy and the structure below the surface actually helps to make quicker, more accurate and eventually correct decisions when it comes to life drawing.


Read theory about Rib Cage here.


The previous session went relatively ok however, my tutor and I decided that this time I had to spend some time learning “theory”. Instead of rushing to catch up with the rest of the class drawing the models short poses, I had to observe and draw from a skeleton. My task was to draw the rib cage. No detail was needed really, just trying to be proportionally right. Apparently, the width and length of the ribcage were pretty similar so I ended up with a square.

20180521_214124.jpg

I picked up the middle bone which approximately reaches the middle of the rib cage and then tried to shape the outline of the rib cage. I also tried sketching from different angles and this is why you can see the small boxes in perspective. I tried to outline the “box” within which the rib cage would fit later. This is an amazing technique if the ribcage (and later the model) does not look directly at you.

…outline the “box” within which the rib cage would fit later.

Once I got a grasp of what the proportions should be and how the outline of the ribcage roughly is then I tried to understand what the structure of the ribs themselves is. It is fascinating how this slim elements actually form a nice “tube” where all the important organs of a human are protected. It is a very architectural form if you think about it! Once the outlines are in place and you have defined the connection points of the ribs (bottom of the bone in the middle and spine) then the 3D feel of the ribs is not difficult to achieve (my sketch of course is not even close to how the arrangement of the ribs actually is – that wasn’t my intention anyway).

20180521_214116.jpg

After spending the first half of the class training my eyes and hands to work together by observing and sketching the rib cage of the skeleton we had a brief break. After the tea break the model returned to his previous long pose (see Julian 2). I got a different seat (on purpose – to try a different angle). During the week I had read that it is very important to define where the joints are and this is what I did. I also tried to implement my new knowledge…you can see the rib cage below.

20180521_214055.jpg

30 mins before the end of the class our tutor had a quick look at my drawing. She acknowledged that the upper body structure is looking better and more structured than previously. We were of course not looking for a perfect drawing showing details or tone. Don’t forget that the aim of this class was to learn about the rib cage! Something she highlighted as a serious mistake is making very dark and bold lines. This is not a good method as does not allow you any flexibility to rectify your mistakes.

…a serious mistake is making very dark and bold lines.

20180521_213433.jpg

Enjoy the Bank Holiday!

 


The Artist says:

28407451_1162363890564038_455176961_o“Since I joined the life drawing classes, I have really developed a completely different way of looking at the objects around me. I try to spot the details and I try to understand how different elements of an object affect the proportions, the shape and the tone. Studying the human body is quite challenging but really rewarding!

 

 

 

Art is more fun when you meet the artists themselves! Visit THE ARTIST…

 

CHROMA

Love Sketching & Painting

Παρουσίαση2

 

 

JULIAN 2

14/05/2018

This time I decided to delay my article for a week to have a shorter gap until the next issue (the second part will be published tomorrow). The main reason being that they are kind of complementing each other. We had the same model as previous week, Julian . However, this life drawing session revealed a weakness in my drawing and in the second session we tried to improve that aspect working with my tutor.

Last week (14/05/2018) Julian, started as usual with a  short pose where his back muscles were stretched. He was just lying on the table looking the opposite direction from where I was sitting. This was a great angle if you wanted to observe the structure of the back. I didn’t spend too much time detailing as it was a quick pose anyway. Very roughly sketched the outline and a few basic lines and then I blocked in some tone to make it look slightly more complete.

32678211_1215049795295447_6716602915571630080_n.jpg

We then spent ages trying to set the second short pose. In fact we spent so much time trying to sort that out that eventually we decided that this could be the long pose. So we ended up with quite an interesting pose where the model was sat upright on the table with his legs bent. One of his arms was just hanging supporting its own self weight on the table. The other one though (which made the drawing more difficult for me in the next session) was resting on the man’s knee.

Everything was going relatively ok with no major frustration or any problems. However, when the drawing was finished, a quick evaluation from the tutor revealed major issues which I didn’t spot when drawing (I didn’t even realise I made mistakes…). The way the head was positioned on the shoulders and neck and the alignment and angle of the model’s torso was wrong. It might not be visible in the first instance however not being accurate causes this feeling of unnatural pose.

32747846_1215049768628783_7360978117415927808_n

the alignment and angle of the model’s torso was wrong…not being accurate causes this feeling of unnatural pose.

Not having enough time to start from scratch, I decided I would try to sketch the head only, this time in the correct angle. All the drawings included in this article show the correct head position. The head was tilted downwards with the chin resting almost between the shoulders. What I like about this sketch is the kind of free-ish charcoal marks.

32854794_1215049918628768_3943991626656907264_n.jpg

We decided that in the next session instead of following the rest of the class I would spend more time “studying” the rib cage and the upper body structure (which was genuinely very interesting!)


The Artist says:

28407451_1162363890564038_455176961_o“Since I joined the life drawing classes, I have really developed a completely different way of looking at the objects around me. I try to spot the details and I try to understand how different elements of an object affect the proportions, the shape and the tone. Studying the human body is quite challenging but really rewarding!

 

 

 

Art is more fun when you meet the artists themselves! Visit THE ARTIST…

 

CHROMA

Love Sketching & Painting

Παρουσίαση2

Perspective – Horizon, the big hoover

HORIZON – THE BIG HOOVER

Where all lines get lost…


Previous article:  WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING AT…?


Right, in the previous article we made it clear that the horizon is directly connected to your eyes level. That means the higher you stand you will be able to see things from above and vice versa; you will be able to see things from below when you stand lower. How does this affect your drawings though?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The lines tend to vanish as they go closer to the horizon. You can imagine the horizon as a big linear hoover that sucks the lines of your drawings. EVERYTHING has to vanish into your horizon. And this applies even to the objects that are very close to yourself. Even these gradually vanish in to the horizon. Lines can be interrupted before they actually reach the horizon ie. the small carton box standing in front of you doesn’t need to reach your horizon line to vanish, however the extension of its lines will do reach.

 

30125683_1189287021205058_236986397_o

Of course “vanishing into the horizon” is quite a vague phrase and everyone can interpret in various different ways. In reality perspective follows specific rules and the easiest way to understand it is by using the “vanishing points”. The vanishing points attract all lines of the drawing – this is where your lines actually vanish. A drawing can have 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 vanishing points. Working with 2 vanishing points is a good start for a beginner and once you master this you can easily start using 3 points.

30174447_1189287024538391_1373495388_o

Now lets grab some paper, a pencil and a rubber and start drawing in perspective. Move to the next article:


Previous Article: WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING AT…?

Next Article: Coming Soon…


THE ARTIST…

28407451_1162363890564038_455176961_o“The article above as well as the whole series of the Sketching Advice articles is an effort to put together my knowledge and offer it to fellow artists in their first steps in as simple words as possible . I am not a professional artist or tutor, however I have spent some time sketching and through trial and error I realised that following some basic principles can simplify sketching a lot. Feel free to ask any questions and I ll be glad to help if I can .”

Love Sketching & Painting

CHROMA

Παρουσίαση2

 

Perspective – What are you looking at…?

What are you looking at….?

Perspective in practice – Horizon


Previous Article: PERSPECTIVE – THE BASICS


After a short holidays break (HOLIDAYS IN GREECE) we are back to our sketches and drawings! Today we will explore together how perspective actually works on paper. In the previous article (PERSPECTIVE – THE BASICS) we made it clear that sketching what you know will not help you massively. You need to train your eyes and hands to work together and draw what you actually see.

28945035_1178039392329821_98251331_o

Keeping this in mind you must be prepared to draw shapes that do not actually correspond to reality; however they look real and accurate on paper! And if this sounds very vague to you, do not stress out. Perspective follows some very specific rules. Once you get yourself familiar with that; then you can build up to more complicated shapes and subjects pretty quickly.

29242944_1178039285663165_890336397_o

To understand perspective, the most important thing you will need is…just your eyes! Everything relates to where you stand relatively to an object. It is important if you are far, close, above or below. That will determine how big or small you perceive something and how “steep” all lines are (here is where perspective messes with us…).

empire-state-building-19109_640 - Αντίγραφο

Imagine that your eyes have laser and can cut a flat plane right in front of you. That will be your horizon. This plane moves up and down as your whole body (…the level of your eyes) moves up and down. To understand how this works imagine yourself standing at the top of the Empire State Building – now your horizon is very very high – you can actually see most of the New York City buildings from above. Now imagine yourself at street level (Times Square) – your horizon is very low – you need to rise your eyes to look at the buildings – you can only see them from below (no view of their roof top).

Tip: Check the Empire State Building and Time Square links. They are impressive!

new-york-2580373_1920
Being at the top of Empire State Building takes your eye level (your horizon) really high. This enables you to see everything from above.

 

new-york-1930656_1920
Being at street level your eyes are quite low compared to the huge high rises next to you. You cannot see any of the roof tops.

The line we all know as the “horizon”, actually follows the level of your eyes. This takes us a step closer to understanding perspective. The rest of the perspective principle is that all lines tend to vanish into the horizon.

28946688_1178035452330215_197657852_o

 Keep reading to see how:


Previous Article: PERSPECTIVE – THE BASICS

Next Article: Coming soon…


 

THE ARTIST…

28407451_1162363890564038_455176961_o“The article above as well as the whole series of the Sketching Advice articles is an effort to put together my knowledge and offer it to fellow artists in their first steps in as simple words as possible . I am not a professional artist or tutor, however I have spent some time sketching and through trial and error I realised that following some basic principles can simplify sketching a lot. Feel free to ask any questions and I ll be glad to help if I can .”

 

*All pictures used here are either my sketches or edited royalty free photographs.

CHROMA

Love Sketching & Painting

Παρουσίαση2