Thursday, May 21, 2015

233 Green Screen test with free book promo

I recently downloaded an app called Veescope Live. It allows for filming with a green screen with iMovie. This means I can put a video or still image behind me as I film. The book cover image you see in the video below was a digital image I used to replace the green screen behind me (which is a green sheet of muslin cloth). As a test I decided to make a small promotional piece for my new book on Wattpad. Take a look at the video and I think you will agree that the app did a pretty good job. It is very easy to use. My compliments to Veescope Live.

If you haven't checked out the Wattpad book please take a look and let me know what you think. Many thanks to fellow painter Annie A at Wetcanvas for the heads up about grammatical and structural errors. Corrections are on-going and I really do appreciate your help.

Brad Teare–May 2015

Monday, May 18, 2015

232 Tectonic Shift

Tectonic Shift, 10" x 10", acrylic on canvas
There comes a time in every artist's journey when major changes are inevitable. Usually it's when multiple paths have been pursued and it's time to synthesize all the disparate parts of the art project into one complete whole.

In the accompanying painting I combined multiple techniques developed over the last fifteen years into one canvas. I'm not saying it's a masterpiece–it's only ten inches square–but it does encapsulate a vein of expression that can be expanded on for many painting sessions to come.

In the study of creativity there is a concept known as divergent/convergent thinking where one's mind is filled with as many possibilities as possible only to reach a saturation point. The brain then begins a paring down procedure where harmonious elements are fused together. This is often a subconscious process. Such events often mark a major shift in the creative journey.

Hoping your journey is progressing well.

Brad Teare–May 2015

View painting and print on Saatchi Art.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

231 New chapter on composition

I added a new chapter about composition to my online book The Art of Thick Paint. Composition is one of the most important aspects of painting. In this lengthy chapter I've outlined nearly everything I know about this intriguing subject. I'm almost sure there will be something new for everyone. Give it a look and let me know what you think. Read it free here (along with accompanying video).

I hope you enjoy this new chapter.

Brad Teare–May 2015

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

230 Thick Paint book now with video

My online book The Art of Thick Paint now has accompanying video with every chapter. Click here or on the book cover below to read the book. Both text and video are free. Video is a new feature with Wattpad and I think it's a great addition to the reading experience. In many cases the videos are nearly a perfect match. In others I've yet to do a video on the topic (such as the floating grid) and used a video that complements the theme. A few chapters I hope will be of interest are how to use palette knivesloading the brush, and field effects (click these links to go directly to the respective chapters).

I don't often ask for social media support but giving a star to the book on the Wattpad site will expose more people to the Thick Paint project. I appreciate your help.

I hope this new combination of video and text will prove useful to those who want to explore painting with thick paint in greater detail.

Brad Teare–May 2015

Monday, May 4, 2015

229 Acrylic ideas and tips

Evolution of Blue, 48" x 36", acrylic
Acrylic is an amazingly flexible medium–if you know how to use it. In the video below–another free Gbox exclusive–I demonstrate several tips and practices that will broaden your acrylic mark making repertoire.

Included in this 20 minute video are ideas on how to use sgraffito (scratching) to add complexity to your abstracts. Also included are ideas about painting into a dry acrylic painting as if painting wet-into-wet using retarder medium.

Additionally I show how I recycle ice cream jars to store a variety of acrylic painting mixtures as well as other useful ideas. For example I use AYL Silicone gloves (see link below) to open acrylic jars when they become nearly impossible to open. The gloves have really saved my hands since in the past I could almost pull the skin off trying to open dried acrylic jars.

Let me know what you think of the video. I hope you find some useful ideas to improve your acrylic painting.

Brad Teare–May 2015


Thursday, April 30, 2015

228 Kinds of creativity

Much of the discussion of art is plagued with false dichotomies. Is realism the only legitimate art form, or is abstraction?

There are at least two types of creativity: adaptation and innovation. Adaptation seeks to perfect the artistic paradigm. Innovation seeks to break it.

Rockwell Kent internalized the work of The Group of Seven and honed and polished his stylistic version. Jackson Pollack broke the paradigm by rejecting current convention by painting horizontally and rejecting the use of brushes and other academic techniques. Both types of creativity are legitimate. Pablo Picasso routinely merged both adaptation and innovation as his work slid back and forth across the creative spectrum throughout his long career. There are infinite combinations of adaptive and innovative creativity.

Creativity and visual art are types of thinking. The manner of expression changes depending on the artist's intent. Illustrator Sam Nielsen describes artists as of two types: planners or explorers. Planners tend to be more academic, where each aspect of the artistic process is planned out meticulously. Discoverers tend to be more loose in their approach. Abstract painters often use a discovery process to slowly evolve the work often not even knowing where the work is headed.

Personally I need a combination of adaptive and innovative creativity in my process. Anything less isn't truly satisfying. I need to have a general plan while using a technique that allows me to spontaneously modify my vision.

Brad Teare–May 2015

Monday, April 6, 2015

227 Concert Window event CANCELED


I’m pleased to offer another Concert Window event tomorrow at 9pm EDT. This event will focus on painting acrylic washes over a highly textured canvas. The principle method includes using a variety of Golden texturing mediums with the addition of chalk in many cases.

It is a unique technique and I will demonstrate on two canvases–one, Dream of Light, 44” x 44”, which I have worked on previously and another canvas, Venice Light, 48” x 36”, which I'm just beginning. So viewers will get a good overview of my process from start to finish.

I think it will be a lot of fun and will be monitoring your questions each half hour during the hour and a half demonstration. I hope you will join me. To participate click here.

Brad Teare–April 2015

Thursday, April 2, 2015

226 Thick acrylics on Concert Window

Dream of Light, 44" x 44", work in progress
I'm excited to share some new ideas about painting with thick acrylics on a highly absorbent ground. The new technique is a fusion of all my experimentation of the last fifteen years. I use techniques from woodcut, encaustic, as well as the methods I used in oil painting. And, of course, I add lots of chalk to my paint.

The Concert Window event will be on Tuesday, April 7 at 9:00 EDT (8 Central, 7 Mountain, and 6 Pacific time). The video below will give you an idea of the direction I will be heading during the broadcast.  You can get ready by going to Concert Window and typing my name in the search box or click here.

I will be taking questions live and the session will be an hour and a half. I wanted to make it free but due to some technical difficulties it will be $1. I trust that won't be a problem for most viewers. I plan to do a Gbox offering which will be edited with additional material for $5 so this will be a good opportunity to see the session first hand (and ask questions).

In the video below I forgot to set my white point. I had some problems with white point in previous Concert Window sessions and I will be sure to lock it before Tuesday's broadcast.

Hope to chat with you then!    

Brad Teare–April 2015

225 The Genius of Van Gogh, Part 3

Vincent Van Gogh’s work is so unique I've renamed blogs #195 and #211 (originally titled Painting Like Van Gogh, now The Genius of Van Gogh) because no one will ever paint like Van Gogh. His work is inimitable. Nevertheless, I find it interesting and productive to study his work. Below is an analysis of several images fellow painter Erik te Kamp sent from the Kröller-Müller Museum:

The first thing I noticed is what appears to be gessoed canvas showing through in areas. The most notable spot being in the middle of the canvas on the very left. Altbough Van Gogh generally applied the paint very thickly there is definitely a hierarchy of thick and thin strokes.

In the second image we see some very random thick strokes. It is almost as if he used a different brush for each stroke–impossible of course–but it shows how he achieved a great deal of variety with his tools. I often paint foliage with a repetition that is painful. This passage is a good reminder that variety is possible even with a minimum of brushes. I don't think this portrait of a tree would work as well if he had not given a great deal of variety to each stroke.

Also of interest is whether or not the green stroke on the trunk was painted alla prima or afterward when the first coat of paint had dried. I guess it was painted after. The dark, cloisonnistic strokes, of what appears to be black, also appear to have been painted after the first painting session. I'm impressed with Van Gogh's simultaneous abandon and control of the medium. That paradox might be what is so engaging about his work.

Again many thanks to Erik te Kamp for these great closeups. If anyone has access to original J.M.W. Turner paintings I would love to do an analysis of his work as well.

Brad Teare–April 2015

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

224 Live Meercat demo tonight

Tonight (31 March 2015) at 9:00 Eastern Time I will broadcast a free live demo using Meercat which will consist of painting on two large acrylic paintings. If you are a Twitter follower you will automatically get a tweet to sign on. During the demo you will be able to pose questions via Twitter. Click here to follow my Twitter feed or sign in with Meercat here.

The demo will be useful for acrylic painters of all levels but will also be a test of Meercat so please bear with me while I work out any bugs. But I appreciate your attendance and any feedback you can give. We will be talking about using chalk with acrylic and creating interesting textures. I am confident there will be some great tips for acrylic painters of all stripes.

See you soon.

UPDATE: We had a good session but I didn't get any questions via Twitter so that aspect of the process didn't work very well. I'm planning a repeat demo on Tuesday, April 7, 2015 at 9 EDT via Concert Window. It will be a free broadcast. I hope to see you there. Sign up via Concert Window here.

It might be profitable to review the following video as we will use the demonstrated techniques as a point of departure:

Brad Teare–March 2015

Sunday, March 29, 2015

223 Learning to paint, Part 2

Artists might think that sheer repetition is the means to improve their paintings. We often hear reference to putting miles on the brush. But according to the latest neurological research in the book Make It Stick this metaphor is incorrect. Using repetitive practise as a means to move forward is a strategy called massed learning–a strategy basketball players use when they spend endless hours shooting free throws. But this type of practise induces only short term learning–much like when you cram for a test and forget everything you "learned" within a week.

A better alternative is interleaved learning or spaced learning. This means that you alternate between diverse activities to allow the mind to shift gears. This is a counterintuitive way to learn because to students the massed practise method seems like they are learning at the maximum level. When the same students try the spacing or interleaving method it seems as though they are not learning as fast. However research confirms that the perception of faster learning with massed learning is an illusion.

Massed learning can be likened to binge eating. Getting massive amounts of information into the brain does not equate to retaining the information. Without spacing or interleaving there are no desirable difficulties, that is, an interval of time that makes retrieval of the newly acquired information difficult but not impossible to retrieve. A fixed practise ritual of massed learning is an impediment to learning. Here are the steps to maximum learning:

ENCODING- This is accumulating the experience necessary to begin making associations. For example, in order to learn which consistency of paint is best for you you need to experience various mediums. Reading about mediums is a start but not enough. It is best to accumulate hands-on experience to form practical knowledge from which your subconscious mind will later form a myriad of associations. New learning depends on prior learning.

CONSOLIDATION- The information accumulated is condensed by deep processing, often subconscious, where connections and relationships are explored. Resting the mind is critical as is adequate sleep. If stress levels are too high cortisol is released into the bloodstream diminishing the consolidation process. The techniques of interleaving and spacing help to create desirable difficulties in the consolidation process.

RECONSOLIDATION- At the right interval, using interleaving and spacing, review what you have learned by retrieving the new observations. Mistakes are assimilated and reconfigured. Mistakes are not a necessary evil–they are a critical component of acquired information. They are integral to the building blocks of experience. Analysis and reflection on mistakes as well as successes is a form of retrieval that strengthens learning. To be continued

Brad Teare–March 2015

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