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Master your Tools, Not Rules

by Zac Elletson on 4/10/2017 10:06:07 AM
8 Comments

Your artistic license is the only rule you need to follow, and your tools should help you achieve it however you see fit. [...]


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Hitting the Wall or Bouncing off It

by Laura Pollak on 3/14/2017 8:11:22 AM
13 Comments

So my new method of working is to keep a number of paintings on my Merry-Go-Round of an easel and hope that when the time is right, I'll see exactly what each painting needs to graduate and fly off into the world. [...]


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Little Words of Wisdom

by Luann Udell on 3/2/2017 9:47:56 AM
26 Comments

Make the work of your heart, make what lifts your heart, and get it out into the world. [...]


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The Wordless USP

by Clint Watson on 2/28/2017 10:09:48 AM
12 Comments

You're not selling insurance, you're selling art: what you need is a wordless USP. I'm redefining "USP" for artists. Your "Wordless USP" is your Unique Style of Painting. [...]


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Original Artwork

by Ken Pieper on 1/13/2017 10:19:29 AM
92 Comments

Every industry I know must change in order to maintain and grow. The old axiom of “grow or go” is absolutely the truth in any business. [...]


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The Necessity of Taking Photographs

by Sandy Askey-Adams, PSA on 10/26/2016 9:35:06 AM
21 Comments

When you take those photographs, they are yours. No one else has taken the same photograph in the same way... at the same exact moment. (Just as when you do a drawing or a painting.) And as an artist, that is what can help make your painting inspirations, concepts and ideas yours and yours alone. [...]


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This Is How Abandoning The Herd Can Bring Success

by John P. Weiss on 10/8/2016 10:34:04 AM
27 Comments

Exceptional craftsmanship and exemplary art stands on its own. [...]


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Painting Is Dead!

by Mark Brockman on 10/7/2016 10:06:13 AM
22 Comments

Learn what it takes to do what has been done so many times already but still carries on. Because you, us, we are the hope of original paintings once more being sought after, admired and desired. [...]


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The Next Rembrandt and the Search for Character

by Erica Norelius on 6/23/2016 9:18:37 AM
6 Comments

While likeness can and will be easily captured by our cameras and created by our computers, they will never replace the artist touch and the selective ability to draw out character. [...]


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The Art of Spark Plugs and Quiet Living

by John P. Weiss on 3/26/2016 9:41:52 AM
10 Comments

Artfulness is everywhere, improving our lives and injecting more beauty into our midst. The trick is to slow down and adopt a bit of my father-in-law’s quiet living. Because when we do, a creative awakening will be there to greet you. [...]


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Eat Your Vegetables

by Mark Brockman on 3/17/2016 6:30:04 AM
8 Comments

What happens is we may have an area or object in a painting that we are unsure of, maybe it even scares use to attempt to paint that object, so we hold off, waiting for the right moment. The right moment though is not at or near the end of the painting process. Those scary things need to be tackled early on. [...]


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Decide on One Center of Interest

by Brienne Brown on 3/16/2016 6:44:55 AM
8 Comments

There are many more stories to tell. I can change my color palette for different moods. I can change the design and choose a different center of interest. I can zoom in closer or zoom out further to get different stories. The point is that it is important to decide before you start painting what it is you want to emphasize. What will be your one center of interest? [...]


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Being Literal

by Mark Brockman on 2/15/2016 8:10:27 AM
20 Comments

That by perhaps changing the mood, the environment, and numerous other aspects of what they truly see and paint what they want to see and how they feel, that they just might make us feel the same way about that teapot as the artist does, or at the very least see it with their own memories or emotions. And isn't that the artist's job - to get the viewer to feel something? [...]


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Artist, Know Thyself (6 Questions to Ask Yourself)

by Judy Ballance on 1/27/2016 7:49:53 AM
10 Comments

All artists, no matter which art form they follow, have to understand themselves and know why they want to make art. Without a purpose they can’t create inspired work [...]


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Surprise! You are the Needle in the Haystack

by John P. Weiss on 11/21/2015 10:10:26 AM
21 Comments

What you want to do is embrace your passion. Believe in it. Share it with others. Be that needle in the haystack. Through your uniqueness you have the power to improve the lives of others and find artistic fulfillment. Sounds to me like a fine way to live one’s life. [...]


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Did You Make That Up? What I Learned Today

by Jenifer Cline on 11/20/2015 7:24:47 AM
13 Comments

I have had time and I find that one of the most enjoyable things about creating a composition is deciding what to leave out, what to move slightly and what to emphasize. And yes, I get to decide, so I realize that yes - I am making it up! [...]


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So You Want to be a Better Painter? Make More Paintings

by David M. Kessler on 11/12/2015 7:10:26 AM
17 Comments

Workshop students ask me "How can I be a better painter?" My advice to them is two-fold: 1. Learn the basics: the fundamentals of design, composition and color; 2. Make more paintings. You cannot ever be a good painter if you don't learn the basics. [...]


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Your Boring Artwork And How To Revive It

by John P. Weiss on 10/17/2015 10:16:28 AM
31 Comments

It’s time to banish boring artwork and the crickets of indifference! Adopt the three antidotes, work hard, have fun and show the world the original voice inside of you. [...]


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Stop Listening to Critics

by Mark Edward Adams on 7/20/2015 8:22:33 AM
42 Comments

The life of an artist is never easy. In order to find your personal style and innovate, you must move past the judgments of those who know less. This means you will have to grow a thick skin. You must move forward with the confidence that your work can stand on its own despite harsh words from others. As the director Francis Ford Coppola explained, the things that receive the most criticism in the beginning are often the same things that brings you the most praise later in life. [...]


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Muddying the Waters: Let the River Flow

by Luann Udell on 7/2/2015 7:07:02 AM
15 Comments

But only compare yourself to others in the context of making your work even better. Admire the beauty others have brought into the world. But never set aside your avocation--the distinctive inner eye, your unique artistic vision--that makes you, well....you. [...]


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How Much Should You Adjust Your Style to the Demands of Others?

by Carolyn Henderson on 6/1/2015 7:51:50 AM
15 Comments

There are essentially no rules in art -- which is positive and negative -- but for all that there are no rules, it is amazing how many we self-impose upon ourselves, through the words of others who 1) don’t live our lives, 2) don’t have to live our lives, and 3) nonetheless determine to control us, if we let them, by their own set of esoteric rules. [...]


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8 Things You Can Do To Prevent Boring Art

by Judy Ballance on 5/20/2015 8:03:19 AM
12 Comments

These days it seems there is a lot of boring art being created. Art with nothing original about it. Here are 8 ways to make your art more interesting and exciting. [...]


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Are You Stuck With Your Style?

by Carolyn Henderson on 5/18/2015 8:18:28 AM
26 Comments

If you’re breathing, you’re growing, and if you’re growing, you should be learning, and if you’re learning, you will be changing, one way or another. And so, also, will your art. [...]


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How Vital - - and Sacrosanct - - Is Your Style?

by Carolyn Henderson on 5/4/2015 8:18:16 AM
20 Comments

If you are an acolyte, convinced that the pinnacle of your ability will be achieved when you paint exactly like your teacher, step back, step away, and gain enough self-confidence to go your own way with what you have. Otherwise, you will lose yourself, literally, in the name and style of your chosen teacher. [...]


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Why You Should Be Different

by Mark Edward Adams on 3/2/2015 7:05:18 AM
16 Comments

I understand it might be tempting to create work similar to the work you see in galleries. But you should understand the art world is always changing. By the time you develop the skill set to replicate popular art, it may be out of style. The safer choice is to just make the work you enjoy. Then, do your best to promote your art and create a collector base. It should be your goal to create the next popular style, rather then follow the styles of the past. [...]


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Don't Create This! (Create it!)

by Brian Sherwin on 2/11/2015 8:30:43 AM
14 Comments

Your following is waiting... create and they will come. [...]


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Is Your Art Original?

by Susan Vignola on 2/6/2015 7:01:13 AM
29 Comments

Each artist can only paint the paintings that only that artist can paint. [...]


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Painter vs. Artist

by David P. Hettinger on 11/14/2014 7:22:08 AM
18 Comments

So, when you pick up a brush or a stick of pastel, remember to put yourself into what you are creating. Knowing how to draw is important, knowing color is important, knowing design is important, but none of these matter as much as putting yourself into what you are creating. [...]


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Aaaaarrrrggghhh!!!! Why can't I get this right?

by Doug Hoppes on 8/8/2014 7:15:52 AM
12 Comments

Sometimes, you just need to give it your all and see that you really do have the magic to make it work. [...]


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The Problem With Painting Workshops

by John P. Weiss on 6/28/2014 8:07:55 AM
28 Comments

So here's the deal. Take those workshops, copy those museum masterpieces until you've reached a level of true proficiency. Then stop all that. Pack up your paint box easel and spend some serious time digesting the world around you. Slow down, even when you think you're wasting time. Study, think, experiment, and stop trying to ape someone else. Inside you is a unique voice. It has been whispering in your ear for a long time, waiting for you to blossom. [...]


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The Right One

by Donald Fox on 6/23/2014 7:32:41 AM
7 Comments

An astute teacher, on the other hand, will guide students while also allowing them autonomy and even encouraging them to explore other possibilities. [...]


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And That's All I Have To Say About That

by Karen Cooper on 6/18/2014 7:12:28 AM
8 Comments

So then, I guess that makes our goal to mix a little Gump with a little Swinton. Kind of like: that's all I have to say about that, and I hope you find it interesting! [...]


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The Lesson of Jackson

by Collin Chandler on 4/29/2014 7:24:41 AM
9 Comments

To sell my work successfully, yes, of course, I need to create engaging, quality work, but I also need to provide the nervous sales girl with a compelling answer for the haughty London dude. Better yet, I want him to already know. [...]


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In the Zone

by Ginger Whellock on 4/19/2014 9:31:35 AM
25 Comments

I have learned that my right brain (my creative side and the one that paints) is full of chaos and loves to be in the Zone BUT, I have to engage my left brain (analytical, organized and intellectual side) to access usable knowledge, keep me on target mentally and not wondering off somewhere in the chaos. [...]


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Pros and (Mostly) Cons of Sight-size Method

by Keith Bond on 3/17/2014 7:27:34 AM
13 Comments

The problem with sight-size is that if you have become dependent upon it, you may not have the confidence (or worse yet, the ability) to accurately draw something that isn’t exactly as you see it. You become dependent upon copying. Creativity suffers. Works become technical craft and less about feeling, mood, and expression. [...]


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Don’t Just Play it Safe

by Keith Bond on 8/5/2013 7:37:54 AM
5 Comments

Your so-called ‘safe’ paintings often have a higher likelihood of turning out successfully. But they usually won’t be the ‘show-stoppers’. They will tend to feel a little bit more predictable or formulaic for lack of better words. Even if they turn out good, they probably won’t represent your very best work. [...]


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Like

by Karen Cooper on 2/5/2013 12:08:14 PM
7 Comments

When you look at a work of art, you've got about three options 1. you like it 2. you don't like it 3. you are completely ambivalent, which for all effects and purposes is just the same as #2 [...]


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Make Your Mistekes Big Ones

by Carolyn Henderson on 1/4/2013 7:44:45 AM
15 Comments

Unless you're one of those elephants or chimpanzees trained to do artwork, you're human, and erring is part of all that. Give yourself a break when you make a mistake, give others a break when they make a mistake, and move on. [...]


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Find Originality in Truth

by Keith Bond on 12/3/2012 7:37:49 AM
28 Comments

The desire to be original is universal. We are unique individuals with unique personalities, likes, dislikes, etc. We want our art to reflect that individuality. But some are looking for individuality and originality in the wrong places. [...]


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Refilling the Well

by Keith Bond on 11/19/2012 7:33:20 AM
17 Comments

The problem is, if you only rely on the refilling that naturally occurs without your conscious effort, it may not always be enough to sustain you. Droughts will come. But they will be less severe and less frequent if you 1) realize that your well does needs refilling, 2) consciously do something to ensure it is getting refilled, and 3) do it regularly to stave off the dry spells. [...]


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