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Category Archives: Greece

Agios Antonios HandpaintedACEO Print Copyright Luigina Ware 2012

Fishing Boat at Syros Handpainted ACEO PrintCopyright Luigina Ware 2012

Lalakia Garden Handpainted ACEO PrintCopyright Luigina Ware 2012

Wave: Handpainted ACEO PrintCopyright Luigina Ware 2012

I spent last weekend on an experiment, albeit one that I thought would succeed. Here are the results. These are my very first efforts at ACEOs* (see below for an explanation of what an ACEO is). ACEOs can be made in any media but they must be right size – these are quite tiny – only 2.5 by 3.5 inches. I had a particular aim with these ones which was to see what I could do with an image by painting onto a canvas print. I chose these four as they each offered a particular challenge – some like Agios Antonios and Lalakia Garden were originally paintings and Fishing Boat and Wave were both digital art. I originally got into making these digital pictures when exploring photographs I had taken in Photoshop with a view to painting them. They then became digital artworks in their own right. Now I am painting over those prints so I suppose you could say these images have come full circle. 


I have tried to photograph them so that the very nice zingy sharpness and vivid colour come out well and also so that you can see the scale – there’s a 1 euro coin in some of the pictures. They are still sitting on my chair in the kitchen in the afternoon sun and I just went to have a look to see how accurate the colour reproduction is. Hard to tell what you are seeing – always be aware when viewing art online that different monitors and computer equipment display colour somewhat differently. But I really don’t think anyone buying these would be disappointed in the contrast between these photos and the actual objects. I am really pleased with them and they were great to work on. I’ll photograph some of the print ones later, they also look pretty far out.

The little canvases are mounted on good quality mat board, the edges are all blacked and they are gloss varnished.

I’ve made up my mind to put them to auction on Ebay and see if I can catch the eye of some collectors. Might work, might not…let’s see what happens!!!
Click on the images to visit the relevant pages on my websites where you can buy the full size prints and read something about the original artworks.

 *ACEO is an abbreviation for Art Cards & Editions, sometimes also known as ATCs – Artist Trading Cards – other people might just call them Miniatures. The rule with them is that they are made on card and must measure 2.5 x 3.5 inches – no more no less. They are loved by artists for the scope they give to experiment without the commitment of a major piece and because there is a certain amount of craft in them. It also means you can offer customers a genuinely affordable artwork.

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    I’m not, it is probably obvious, a trained painter. I’m pretty much self-taught and although I always enjoyed and was praised for my art when a kid the obsession to really get at it only fully struck me quite late in the day, at the most inconvenient time for such a messy obsession to install itself. Paint was in short my pregnant craving. No, I didn’t have any really strong desire to eat it but all of a sudden, back in 1983, when I was living (believe it or not)  in a little Greek pigeon house under a mulberry tree on Mykonos (Vienoula’s Garden for those who know ;-)) and just going into my second trimester for my adored son – suddenly PAINT. Oh I had to have it. Along with paint there was also Welsh Mints (not easy to obtain in the Greek Islands even now) and Opera, a form of music I had hitherto had absolutely zero interest in seeing as dancing to New York House DJ’s in Pierro’s was more my style at the time. I remember I got hold of some paint, tape of Carmen, some Caran D’Ache crayons and on one of those ersatz canvas pads made some sloppy efforts at abstracts. I hadn’t a clue what I was about.

     I had known artists growing up as a tiny child in the late 50s. If you remember the Stella Artois advert where the bar owner is grumbling about taking all these payments of paintings in return for his fabulous beer (little realising that he is collecting a future king’s ransom in masterpieces) it was a bit like that with my folks who had a club on the King’s Road Chelsea in London. We didn’t acquire any Van Gogh’s or Gauguin’s unfortunately but I did get to visit various studios of artists of the day and The Gateways was quite renowned for the paintings that adorned the walls (not many photos of them remain, I do have a few and will get them out and publish them here when it gets cooler).

     So the smell of oils was an early memory (though I find linseed almost intolerable as it happens and when I was pregnant it was out of the question). The Chelsea artists of the days loved earthy colours. As one whose childhood and teens were in the 60s I developed a strong attraction to the clear and vivid colours of The Beatles’ Yellow Submarine. I also unusually enough grew up with American comics provided by someone close who was at the time a servicewoman stationed the AAF base in Ruislip and could therefore shop at the PX there. So Superman, Casper the Ghost, Green Lantern and Flash were my heros. In those days of course they were simply printed on comicbook paper but the colours were rich and the covers of each edition were a weekly treat. I loved them.

   So it has taken me a good many years to light upon a memory of the particularly resonant sludgy blue-green-grey-gold-brown that underpinned those art pieces I remember from my earliest years. Over the past few years I have only painted in my mind. Some would say that’s not enough and I would agree with them. However it has had to do. You’d be amazed how much time I have spent dreaming up versions of that strangely vivid sludge. I have some big plans in that direction. More soon…

Handpainted print of Lemons & Garlic

    To tell the truth, like a lot of artists the very idea of selling my work makes me want to go to bed for a month. It’s downright scary. ‘I have spread my dreams under your feet…’ just about sums it up. It’s also massively time-consuming getting it altogether so one can give people enough assurance that they feel able to order a piece from someone they have never met.

I didn’t realise how much it all meant to me, the months I have spent putting my online shop together until I got an email from a happy customer in Texas on the other side of the world the other day and I burst into tears!! I did something a little bit extra for her, I hand-painted one of her prints – something struck me as I was putting the pieces together. She wrote this to me:




Thank you so much!!!  I cannot believe you did that!  The painting is beautiful and I feel so honored.  I cannot wait to get them framed and hung in my house.  You are a very sweet person for doing that….I cannot imagine anyone else doing the same.  Thank you again!   I am so excited!”


Isn’t that lovely? I’m so happy to be really selling through all this. We are all a bit terrified here in Greece with one thing and another, it’s a bit alarming to be trying to kickstart a new business in this economic climate. But on the other hand I just feel that somehow this venture has a glow about it, maybe I just want it that much.

So finally after much deliberation I am now offering hand-painted prints on the websites, not of all the images, some are not suitable for the technique. It’s sort of a halfway house between a giclee artist print and a fully original painting and a very affordable way of hanging a real painting on your wall. The print is made on very good quality premium silk canvas (it’s lovely). But there is no doubt that the canvas tends to absorb some of the colour. Some of the images, especially my more classic paintings like Kyperoussa, Island and Agios Antonios, come out fine but I do think that people looking at my site and purchasing one are probably a bit taken with the vivid colour. I can get it on the top of the range Ilford Galerie gloss paper but the canvas is a bit subdued. However – wow! What a solution painting over turns out to be. I had been a sceptic having seen some pretty awful travesties – cheap canvas, plonked on cheap paint…no no NO! But over a weekend painting into my Lemons & Garlic I became converted and the end product was fantastic. It was a nice job to do too.

Above is a picture of the finished handpainted print before it was packed away for sending – I photographed it hanging on a kitchen cupboard and it has come out slightly wonky but it was actually rectangular!!

If you would like one too you can order from here. I’ll soon be offering handpainted ACEOs of this piece as well.

When I first started to paint one of the driving forces was the desire to create something special and unique you can hold in your hands. Not just an image but a satisfying object to treasure. Recently I stumbled upon a little craze for collecting Artist Trading Cards – they are known as ACEOs or ATCs to the cognoscenti. They are only 2.5 x 3.5 inches and are collected and traded by all sorts of people.
Now over the past few years I have had a bit of a tendency to think in terms of really large pictures but all of a sudden, with a bit of influence admittedly from gaining full understanding of shipping costs – small is beautiful! I really really want to make some of these cards! So I have been preparing with all the fervour of new obsession and have just taken the first batch to the printers to collect tomorrow.

I have made some from details from paintings like Island and Northern Lights. I’ll be offering straight off glossy prints, handpainted prints on canvas (this is where I make a print from my work and handpaint over it to create an ‘almost reproduction’ each with individual unique features), and as soon as I have all this organised I will make some original one-off ACEO-sized paintings.

I managed to source all the materials I need here in Greece (well the polypropylene pockets have come from Cyprus) which pleased me a lot. I am blessed with an amazing printer who is so helpful and encouraging even of my smallest project and a lady called Margarita in Syros’s new frame shop who cut all the black mat passe partout cards for me – I am sooo pleased with them!

Here are a few examples of the new cards. Do please message me if you would like to order – prices will be very low with discounts for buying several at a time – I’ll be venturing onto Ebay and Etsy for the first time with some trepidation once I have figured out postage costs and the like.

Detail from Island

Detail from Island 

I’ll be featuring most of my images in this new format and will soon add a selection of other small prints – 4×4, 5×7, 8x ll in and so on. I’ve made some lovely little certificates which I can sign and each one will have be an exclusive item. More news soon.

Detail from Northern Lights

How much there is to do to create an online presence for one’s art and hopefully sell some. I am not a full time artist – I want to be of course but life doesn’t permit it so I work at other things for a living. That isn’t even a sob story, it’s just that the artist in me is almost a separate function from the worker, I like my job and am lucky to be able to do it from wherever I am.
So, we thought, I’ll set up a website, sell some prints. Maybe I can win back a day a week to have for myself and start creating some more work, get at the paints.  Keep going, keep going!
Exploring the web I find myself in awe time and time again of the work to be found. Then you look and the date of the last post on the blog is months, even years ago. I want to make a flow. I guess it is the early posts that are the worst to deal with, one coughs and feels self-conscious. Everything seems pretentious.
So here’s the plan. I won’t have one. I’ll keep sticking something on here, sharing the picture that’s on my mind today or whatever and let the thing invent itself. I can see how it will be because I know what I do and what I want to share and I also know my objective, it’s just starting it that is weird.
Here on this island it is the most perfect time of year, beautiful, warm and sunny but not too hot. This little painting I did of a garden in a back street is the one most on my mind right now, were I to be able to paint today this is the sort of thing I would be doing:

Lalakia Garden: Painting of a Garden in the backstreets of Ermoupoli, Syros by Luigina Ware. Visit website to buy print

Well it has taken me just a bit of a while but finally, at last, after much wailing and gnashing of html, hollow-eyed nights wrangling with prices and sizes, angst over logos and layout and a really horrible state of consternation and misery over the copy I have finally launched two websites where prints of my work can be bought. If I had had any idea how long it would take I’d probably have printed a few off and made for a beach somewhere but truth to tell I am really proud of them now. Please come and visit:

The first one shows all my Greek art work:

www.aegeanlight.co.uk

 the second is for everything else – right now the digital work and some reproductions of paintings:
www.anotherlight.co.uk

A big part of the work involved was getting the test prints made. I had fantastic help from my printers in Syros, PrintIt Today who couldn’t do enough to help. The samples look really wonderful – better than I hoped. The colours are vivid, the paper and canvas choices are lush and the images are sharp – all in these are products I am very happy with and will be proud to show.

So now there is just the small matter of getting my social network fired up and operational.

For this blog in particular, I have made no rules. I am just hoping that good labelling and tagging will make sense of it all…..

agios-antonios.jpg

I have now made prints available of the this painting of the little church of Agios Antonios at Megas Yialos on Syros.

You can find them at my website Aegean Light www.aegeanlight.co.uk/agios-antonios.html

Come on over and see the new work there and at www.anotherlight.co.uk as well.

 

flame3.jpgstarburst7.jpg

The Hippy in Me is a Happy Bunny tonight. I just made such a cute little psychedelic Slideshow of a few of my digital art expeditions into the heart of Photoshop…..very enjoyable.

See it here at the page called Digitalissima

I’m loving Slide.com – this is the third slideshow I’ve made there and this one gave me a chance for a little unrestrained fantasy indulgence in their feature set.

I’ve also installed a new set of photographs of Syros to give you a flavour of this lovely island.

Find that one here at the page called Syros Photographs

Syros Pharmacyapanomeria1-72.jpgSyros Greengrocer

PLEASE NOTE I NOW HAVE NEW WEBSITES at www.aegeanlight.co.uk and www.anotherlight.co.uk where you can buy prints of Island and many other new works. Please come by and visit.

 

Here’s my latest painting entitled Island now complete. It’s full of all the things I love about Greece.

island-e-version.jpg

Island Poster

Hello, here are some of my paintings.

Some of them have been made since I have lived on Syros. I moved here nearly 5 years ago. Some of them are older, going back to around 1985.

 The picture above shows a poster I made of my newest painting Island. It includes a quotation from one of my favourite poets e e cummings:

love is a place
& through this place of
love move
(with brightness of peace)
all places

Just about sums up my thoughts on that painting for me!

 

PLEASE NOTE I NOW HAVE NEW WEBSITES at www.aegeanlight.co.uk and www.anotherlight.co.uk where you can buy prints of Island and many other new works. Please come by and visit.