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Category Archives: studying paintings

Well here I am again. What a few weeks. It was going so well. And then the Law of Sod took hold. My hard drive failed taking with it weeks and weeks of work that hadn’t yet been backed up. The circuit board is currently en route to the other side of the world where some clever chaps reckon they can put the right chip onto the right new board and send it back to me so I can talk to my life again. All this going on with temperatures in the high 30s/90s which doesn’t turn anyone in my house into a saint believe me.

I’ve also been researching like crazy to try to make the right decisions about how to sell my work, I’m extremely serious about it at this point in my life and on a mission. Things are pretty bad in Greece. About the only hope is to look to overseas customers and artwork is a perfect product from a country whose greatest gift is beauty.

But what a nightmare jungle it all is. Ebay? Etsy? Half a dozen other sites? Or just rely on my site, good SEO and social networking to build the traffic? I am sorely tempted by the latter I really am. I am trying to keep in mind that I am starting out and it might all get to be easier and faster but honestly I feel like I will never be liberated from filling in forms and reading dense rules and regulations not to mention having to serve rookie time virtually giving work away on these sites in order to get established. Trouble is for an artist like me is that I don’t do things by halves. I take time and really want to make a product that is a joy to hold in your hands let alone look at. I also don’t do cutesy which seems to be the style with the Wow Factor that attracts the collectors but I wonder if I am right about this. Will collectors like my work too?

All the same, meanwhile I have been painting furiously making these great little miniature ACEOs…I’ve taken to it like a duck to water. I like painting big and loose but there is almost a whole separate stream of my art consciousness that really gets off on tiny brushes and intricacy.  I’ve been loving it and finding the tiny format oddly liberating. I’m very happy with the results too, I’m dying to do more.

But what to do to sell them? These painted pieces are worth I think at least £40 each. I’ve never done an Ebay auction and the whole idea fills me with terror to be honest.

I’ve put a page of them up My First ACEOs. I wonder what other people think.

My desire to make pictures, even the digital ones, began firmly with a love of paint. My heart absolutely sang when I found this great blog post at one of my favourite Facebook ‘Likes’, Retronaut (highly recommended, one of the best little blue and white buttons I ever pushed). Feast your eyes on photographs of actual palettes of Seurat, Van Gogh, Renoir and Delacroix with images like these:

Seurat’s palette reveals clues to his technique as well as
use of colour
I have something in common with Gustave Moreau
at least, my palettes are as messy as this.

Colourlovers, another fascinating site for those who are intrigued by how great painters actually went about things uses colour analysis tools to explore the palettes of specific paintings. I really like the idea of being able to draw out a basic colourscheme from a painting that affects me visually. I think one of the greatest ways to learn anything is to look at things you admire and try and work out how they began. I went looking therefore for some tools to analyze palettes. I found several but  far and away the best one was this: http://www.cssdrive.com/imagepalette/index.php.
I chose my image Northern Lights because it has quite a broad spectrum of colours and fed it into the app and this was the result:

That site actually allows you to save the colour scheme as a CSS style sheet which means you can base the theme of a website or page on the colourscheme of an artwork or photograph you like. This app gives much much more colour information than the others I tried too. Give it a whirl, it’s loads of fun and the possibilities for artists and designers who want to get under the skin of what makes a particular image pop are endless.