Tag Archives: Art

Today’s Riddle

1 Apr

Found my groove finally with the bead coloring. Okay, more like I wore it down. I'm so stubborn sometimes. Side note: that's my magic pin in the upper right of the photo, I use it to pick up and manipulate the mini paper strips.

Spent quite a bit of time questioning whether the beads looked perfect in black and white or if they might be improved with color. Possibly, it came down to whether they looked better as-is or with the coloring done badly? Oh no! Not that AGAIN?! My bead-coloring fears: Too dark and they become illegible. I’m not interested in going too pastel, either. Too many spontaneous, painterly moves and I make mud. It isn’t a very big canvas!

Eventually… [after I tried different techniques and even painted over the rejects] a combo of fabric dye and watered-down acrylics meets with my approval. My delight at seeing it working is built into every bead! Yes, I like the color. Art of this tiny scale probably needs the double-take value that a little color adds. I hope this helps slow people down long enough to bring it into focus.

It always comes down to this: Maybe I could be a great artist. If I could just stop second-guessing myself all the time. But. I CAN’T DO that. Or CAN I?

I keep going as if I’ve already arrived. Trying not to give much weight to the doubts in my head, mostly because I don’t believe everything I hear. Behaving as if my quirky stuff is going to be a big hit when I start getting it out there. Which is coming up soon enough.

And, I have my answer next time somebody asks me what my art is for. I’m not being sarcastic. I don’t feel responsible to explain my art but I’m happy to do so. I made it because it amused me at the time. How true!


Creating the Illusion of a Pocket

5 Apr

When I wear my tee shirt designed with the faux breast pocket full of paint brushes, I can count on double-takes and usually a comment or two. The surprise of this illusion seems to make people smile. For myself, I love fun clothes and wanted the shirt and design to look intentionally made for each other. The result is relevant to my personal style and to the client, Big Island Arts Annual.

For the design inclined and otherwise curious, a brief tour of how the illusion was created.

First, we shot a concept photo with the tee shirt spread flat. I positioned the brushes in the pocket, just so, to capture the bumps and shadows of the handle shapes inside. Since we were working on the floor, the angle of the shadow was easily adjusted by rotating the subject.

In order to get good close-up focus on both the pocket and the brush tips, we took two separate photographs. The photograph of the heart painting was handy from a previous photo shoot, so I was ready to bring all my parts and pieces into Photoshop.

I didn’t have the kind of short stubby brushes that I wanted for this design so I shortened the ones I had. After clipping out the white tee shirt background, I cut away most of the long wooden handles. Then I positioned the brushes individually, behind the bumps in the pocket. To keep it looking real I adjusted the angle of each brush, just a little.

Next, I layered the hearts painting over the pocket image. I made the pocket extra high contrast so it would show up more under the painting. I made the painting extra bright to compensate for the partial opacity that allows the pocket to show through.

For the paint blobs, I copied a portion of the bristles and filled them with semi transparent colors that were sampled from the heart painting. Semi transparent colors allow some of the bristle details to show through so the blobs don’t look flat. I copied these same color shapes to scatter a few behind the brushes.

Now it looks like the brushes were still wet with paint when the artist stuffed them in their pocket. Sometimes it takes a few tries to get that perfect “random” pattern. I worked it until I was satisfied.

The back of this shirt features the “I Heart Hawaii Artists” logo of BigIslandArtsAnnual.com

(Go to http://www.Zazzle.com/Big_Island_Arts to get the I Heart Hawaii Artists logo wear and share the love)