Not so long ago, it would have been a major decision for the artist. How would the art you produced be given to the viewer.
First there was art produced for advertising or commercial purposes. This today would be graphic art. This type would mean the artist must make many sacrifices to ensure the customer was satisfied with the product. Art was a product.
Under this category, a sort of 1a, was all the areas of craft. The making of products. It would include pottery, jewelry, and fabric.
Second there was art as hobby. Usually produced by artists who had other means of supporting themselves - wealth or retirement, usually. Today we can see the great benefit of using the creative side of our nature. This is FUN art.
And finally, the Big One: art as Art. To be taken very seriously as creative self expression. It underline an existing condition in society or just exist for its own sake.
As an undergraduate it was always stressed that there was a very distinct distinction between art that was produced for mass consumption and Art as serious business. Are you familiar with the Keane eyed children? They were so popular in the 60s, sold like hotcakes, and were heavily scorned by the serious Art community.
We are very blessed to live in an age where we can have our work be a part of all of these!
Don't get me wrong - I love working with oils and they are exciting in their own way. And so capable of subtlity. So relaxing to work with. And pastels are so like meditation! Each medium has its pluses.
But for sheer joy and expression - watercolor does it for me. The immediacy of the colors and the lovely mingling of pigment. I usually have a general idea of where I'm going but I always end up somewhere not only unexpected but also better than what I'd envisioned.
I'm not suggesting there aren't times when I want to recreate something more representational or that there aren't plenty of great watercolorists who don't carefully plan and then execute their plan in wonderful ways.
But here we are, in a spring that can't seem to make up its mind to be spring. We're ready to burst forth as the daffodils and Madonna Lilies in my garden are starting to do. And we're ready to have some fun! Aren't we?
I'm so excited about this class. What a super mix of people/artists! Everyone is ready to let go and let the painting take them to new places. Plus they share!
So useful for artists to share their work and ideas and methods - what they've done that works and what hasn't worked for them. It's truly a blessing to have a group of experimenters and sharers.
This next week we're going to talk about figures and have some fun creating quirky personalities. These things would be nice to bring to class: if you have small plastic shot glasses or eye droppers. Not necessary but fun to work with.
Watercolor paper. The student grade will work as well as the professional grade. Plus all the usual stuff.
I'll be showing you the first step in mounting your small paintings on a board. Don't worry about bringing the board to class - it might be better for you to do at home, actually - so you can weigh them down and leave them undisturbed.
And you'll have the opportunity to continue any work you are presently painting. Happy Spring!