Tuesday, December 5, 2017

I Believe In Art 2017 Review



I know 2017 isn't officially over yet but I will be taking a hiatus from the internet soon and before I do I wanted to take some time to review some of the things I accomplished this year and set a few goals for 2018.

When I publish this post, I will have a total of 13 posts to show for this year.  7 of them were I Believe In Artists Interviews.  I definitely plan to increase the number of interviews in 2018 but when it comes to other topics I don't like to set anything in stone but prefer to allow them to arise organically as all of my remaining posts did this year.



Of those posts, the most popular was my Creating Time and Space post in July.  This post was a response to some of the comments I was getting on The I Believe In Art Facebook page from artists who were struggling to find time and space for their art.  It wasn't a shock to me that so many people resonated with it as I think many artists struggle with these issues.



A first for me was my Plant Splatters and Drips Tutorial post.  I did this to fulfill a request from one of the followers on The I Believe In Art Instagram feed.  It was a challenge for me to do a video but it was also fun.  I would love to do more of those in 2018 and I'm open to suggestions on what techniques or topics you may want me to explore.



As always, a looming topic both on this blog and on The Facebook Page was keeping my art studio clean, another ongoing struggle for artists!  I had a bit of a breakthrough which I wrote about in my A Sacred Place post and I have been much more mindful about what I let into that space now.  However, I am also getting better at not using a messy studio as an excuse to not make art (you can read more about that and my other excuses on my 5 Reasons To Not Make Art post from 2016) .  I just tell myself that chaos is conducive to creativity and then clear some space on my desk or a path to my easel!  Perhaps I will write even more about that in 2018.



The other 2 posts from this year combined my love of art with my love of music.  One was my third annual post about my favorite muse, Mr. Rick Springfield (who has a new album coming out in January, Yay!).  The other was about a song I wrote called Van Gogh's Footsteps.  I plan to focus a lot more on music in the future, so I'm sure it will come up in some of my posts in 2018 too.

However, I would say my main goal for this blog and the I Believe In Art Facebook and Instagram pages in 2018 is to create much more content to encourage and support my fellow artists.  With that goal in mind, I would love to have your feedback.  Was there a post on this blog this year (or any year) that really resonated with you?  Is there an issue you struggle with as an artist that you would like me to explore on this blog?  Please feel free to leave a comment on this post or PM me through The Facebook Page any time.

One last note, I will be unavailable to reply to comments here or on Facebook and Instagram for the last two weeks of this year but I will look forward to catching up with all of you as 2018 begins!

Until then, Happy Holidays and Happy Creating!

Peace, Love and Art,
Victoria

http://www.ibelieveinartshop.com

Monday, November 27, 2017

I Believe In Artists: Aprille Janes

Artist Aprille Janes

Aprille Janes is someone I look up to as an artist, a writer and a leader.  As the host of The Creative Fire Cafe Facebook Group, Aprille often challenges and inspires me and my creativity with thought provoking questions.  I recently realized it was past time I returned the favor, though truly it is Aprille that does us all a favor by sharing her wonderful work and thoughts with us here. Enjoy!

"The Happy Traveller" - Art By Aprille Janes

Question: I know art speaks its own language but if you had to describe your work in only six words, what would they be?

Aprille:  “Do you see what I see?”

For me, creating is the beginning of a conversation and great conversations often start with a curious question. 

However, a conversation takes at least two, sender and receiver. When I create something, I must also share it. When you receive it, you'll interpret my message through your personal filters. That's why I enjoy working in my local artist’s co-op and talking to the people who pass through. I learn so much from them about my own work. Sometimes it’s a total surprise.

Plus, as Stephen King once said, art is a time machine. I create in my Now. You view it (or read it) in your Now and Presto! We’re communicating across time. I love that!

"Royalty"- Art by Aprille Janes
Aprille: Purple used to be reserved for royalty. When I saw this iris crowned with the diamond dewdrops, I knew I had to paint it.

Question: Who is your favorite artist (in any medium) and how do they inspire you?

Aprille: Wow. Tough question because I have a lot of favourites, especially if you open it up to other mediums.

Currently I’m being inspired by Antoni Gaudi, a brilliant Spanish architect who flouted the rules and let nature guide his work. It’s at the top of my bucket list to go to Barcelona to see his buildings and gardens in person. He died almost 100 years ago and one of his designs is still being built. 

I’m also studying the works of Doris Eaton at the moment. She is an artist and rug hooker here in Nova Scotia. My husband gifted me with a book of her work where she talks about her process and why she created each piece. Her hooked pieces are created with a painter’s sensibilities, breaking with the idea that this was only a craft activity. Her compositions and use of colour are true works of art.

An ongoing inspiration is Van Gogh, again because he also broke rules, flaunted convention and did things in his own way.


"Short Flight" -  Art by Aprille Janes
Aprille: While walking one day, I discovered a small pile of feathers strewn about and carried a few home. I was in the middle of painting our cobblestone beach and realized a feather was the touch it needed. Serendipity at work.  

Question: What inspires you to create?

Aprille: The natural world inspires me, especially my gardens and living by water.  We lived beside a lake for almost 20 years and then last year we moved to the Bay of Fundy in Nova Scotia. Living by the ocean has amplified my creative energy and vision. It released something inside of me that I’d held in check for too long. I feel myself becoming a different person and artist. It’s exciting!



"Peggy's Cove" Art by Aprille Janes
Aprille: I love Peggy's Cove. Everywhere you look is a scene begging to be painted. Technically you can't see the lighthouse from where I took the reference photo but I used my artistic license and added it in.
 


Question: What is your favorite part of your creative process?

Aprille: My creative process itself starts with curiosity and I find that fun and endlessly entertaining. What caught my attention? How do I interpret that..? What would happen if…?  Why is that important to me?”

Once something triggers an idea, I have to explore it as soon as possible. Something gets ‘lit’. I make sketches, lists and more sketches until I either get tired of the idea or find something I like and want to take further.

I also love the details. It’s at the end of my process that I put in all the little bits that make a piece come to life for me. The tricky part has always been knowing when to stop because I could play with details for a long time.

"Pink Beauty" - Art by Aprille Janes
Aprille: The complexity of the peony keeps drawing me back and I've painted them a number times.  That and just the 'pinkness' of it.

Question: What is the most challenging part of your creative process and how do you meet that challenge?

Aprille: Perfectionism, which may not technically be part of process but, too often, it has stopped me from getting started. I remind myself constantly to let go of the Masterpiece Myth and enjoy the process rather than focus on the end product.

Doing those preliminary sketches helps me tremendously in easing into my work. They aren’t serious so I “have permission” to make all kinds of mistakes. The sketches get my hand in motion and my brain has fun. Before I know it, I’m past the “fear of starting” because, well, I’ve already started.

I still struggle with perfectionism (does anyone actually get over it?) but at least I know what it takes to carry me beyond that block. Not taking things so seriously has made a huge difference in my creative practice (and my productivity!)

"Mermaid" - Art By Aprille Janes
Aprille: I like to paint from my imagination for the fun of it. This mermaid and "The Happy Traveler" showed up last year. They have sisters waiting to join them soon. 

Question: And finally, what does "believing in art" mean to you?

Aprille: To me, believing in art means trusting its magical power to connect us, despite our differences, geographical location or even the time we live in. As an artist, I believe letting our art reveal who we are at our core is how we tap into that mysterious power.



Thank you Aprille for sharing your art and your insights with us.  For more information on Aprille visit her website at AprilleJanes.comYou can also connect with Aprille on Instagram and Facebook and for more creative inspiration, motivation and connection, check out The Creative Fire Cafe Facebook Group

Click here to find more artist interviews and learn how you can apply to be featured.  You can also connect with I Believe In Art on Instagram and Facebook.

Until next time, happy creating!

Peace, Love and Art,
Victoria

http://www.ibelieveinartshop.com

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

I Believe In Artists: Maria Waye

Artist Maria Waye

Ever since I moved to my current home (affectionately known as The Cabbage) and inherited the gardens here, I have been increasingly aware of how much nature has to teach me about art.  I have also learned by studying artists like Claude Monet that art can teach me a lot about nature.  What I may not have fully appreciated before I encountered Maria Waye and her art on Instagram, however, was just how much nature and art combined can teach me about myself and other people.

Maria and her paintings have not only helped to further my appreciation of the beauty in every type of flower but they also continually challenge me to recognize the beauty in every type of person, including myself.

I hope experiencing her art and words below will do the same for you. Enjoy!


"Daring Dandelion" Oil Painting by Maria Waye
Maria: If you're a fiercely independent spirit, you may understand my admiration for dandelions. This painting is part of my "Being Courageous" collection.

Question: I know art speaks its own language but if you had to describe your work in only six words, what would they be?

Maria:  Joyful art to delight gentle souls.


"MidSummer Blooms" Oil Painting by Maria Waye
Maria: I love the elegance of "Midsummer Blooms", part of my "Being Unique" collection.

Question: Who is your favorite artist (in any medium) and how do they inspire you?

Maria: Mother Nature is my favorite artist. Every tree, bird and rock, seem to be an exquisite sculpture, beautifully lit by ever changing light.


"Charming Coltsfoot" Oil Painting by Maria Waye
Maria: Spring is here when you see wildflowers such as coltsfoot.

Question: What inspires you to create?

Maria: I'm especially inspired to paint flowers and plants. I love their different shapes, forms and temperaments. Each is lovely in its own way.

I hope my art helps us to cherish our own uniqueness, to see ourselves with the same awe, appreciation and love with which we view different flowers.


"Delightful Summer Flowers And Berries" Oil On Linen by Maria Waye
Maria: When you're in a contemplative mood, you may enjoy this still life.

Question: What is your favorite part of your creative process?

Maria: I love the excitement of starting a new piece, and enjoying it so much that I don't realize hours have passed.


"Foxglove Fancy" Oil Painting By Maria Waye
Maria: Let these joyful foxgloves bring you magic, fascination and delight.

Question: What is the most challenging part of your creative process and how do you meet that challenge?

Maria: With so many ideas in my head, there's never enough time for art. I must make painting a priority.

"Cozy Coneflower Meeting" Painting By Maria Waye
Maria: I became obsessed with these flowers during a vacation by the lake, where they bloomed cheerfully in abundance.

Question: And finally, what does "believing in art" mean to you?

Maria:  I believe art awakens our senses, opens our hearts and fills us with love and appreciation, for all living things and nature. When we're filled with so much love, we're kinder, happier and more connected.




Thank you Maria for sharing your art, enthusiasm and point of view with us.  For more about Maria and her art visit her website at MariaWaye.com and be sure to connect with her on Instagram and/or Facebook.

Click here to find more artist interviews and learn how you can apply to be featured.  You can also connect with I Believe In Art on Instagram and Facebook.

Until next time, happy creating!

Peace, Love and Art,
Victoria


http://www.ibelieveinartshop.com

Monday, September 18, 2017

Van Gogh's Footsteps

"Wheatfield with crows" by Vincent van Gogh, July 1890

I'm going to do something different (and, quite honestly, terrifying) on this blog post and share with you a video of myself performing a song that I wrote called, “Van Gogh's Footsteps”.

I wrote this song shortly after seeing a comment on social media that read: No great artist is appreciated during their time.

Not only is that statement discouraging but it is completely false. There are many brilliant artists who have been, and are, appreciated and successful during their lifetimes. Of course there are many who are not, too.

I imagine many of us think of Vincent Van Gogh as a prime example of one of those tragic figures. However, even before his death Van Gogh's work was starting to gain some recognition in the art world of his day. It is entirely possible that had he not been so ill and committed suicide at the young age of 37, he may have been able to achieve and enjoy success and admiration in his time.

I think one way we can all choose to not follow in “Van Gogh's footsteps” is to not allow ourselves to get too discouraged and to never give up (and, for those of us who struggle with mental health issues, to get help when we need it).

Also, I think this world needs more “Theos" (people like Vincent's brother Theo who loved and supported him). So if you know an artist please be kind, encouraging and supportive of them. You never know just how much of a difference that could make to them and to this world.

Okay, here's my song:



Thanks for reading (and watching/listening). Until next time, happy creating!

Peace, Love and Art,
Victoria


http://www.ibelieveinartshop.com

Monday, August 28, 2017

I Believe In Artists: Adam Baranello

Artist Adam Baranello

Artist Adam Baranello is one of many talented artists I follow on Instagram.  Whenever I see one of his drawings in my feed I am always struck by the immediate impact it has on me but it also makes me stop and take a closer look.  Doing this causes me to ponder the messages in his art which have a way of helping me think and refocus on what's most important in my own life and work.

I believe that those who take the time to experience his art and words here will experience similar benefits.  Enjoy!


"Love" Art By Adam Baranello

Question: I know art speaks its own language but if you had to describe your work in only six words, what would they be?

Adam: Original expression of thoughts and ideas. 

Question: Who is your favorite artist (in any medium) and how do they inspire you?

Adam: I cannot pick just one, but these artists are at the top of my list because they do more than one thing or incorporate more than one thing into their overall message, which is what I am all about. To me, they also come across as authentic and true to their vision: David Lynch, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Jean Luc Godard, Pharrell Williams and Andy Warhol


Frames From Adam Baranello's Film, "Beautifully Strange"

Question: What inspires you to create?

Adam: The people, places and things that I am lucky enough to be around inspire me on a daily basis. I am grateful for this. 


"Beautiful" Art By Adam Baranello

Question: What is your favorite part of your creative process?

Adam: To have an idea and see it actualize into something tangible is a pretty rad thing. 


Designs From Adam's Hand Painted Clothing Line

Question: What is the most challenging part of your creative process and how do you meet that challenge?

Adam: Taking risks and not knowing if they will work out. I believe in growth and I believe in starting things in order to figure them out.  I have taken that approach since I started my career as an artist. I don't mind looking foolish and I am not afraid to fail but I do know, through working in this way, it makes me figure it out in order to keep going.  I really do subscribe to the belief of just start creating and figure it out as you go because I have experienced that it is a good way to figure out how to do as much as you can with what you have.  That is how innovation and new things get discovered.  If we just wait until we have every duck in a row, we may never see all of the possible ways in which things can get done and, more importantly, something even greater may come from doing it this way. 


"Life Action" Art By Adam Baranello

Question: And finally, what does "believing in art" mean to you?

Adam: To me, believing in art means Hope.  It is part of the good in the world and something that has the potential to invoke change.




Thank you Adam for sharing your talents and your positive message with us.

To learn more about Adam and his many creative ventures visit his web site at AdamBaranello.com and be sure to connect with him on Instagram and/or Facebook too.

Click here to find more artist interviews and learn how you can apply to be featured.  You can also connect with I Believe In Art on Instagram and Facebook.

Until next time, happy creating!

Peace, Love and Art,
Victoria


http://www.ibelieveinartshop.com

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Back To The Drawing Board: Rick Springfield

Me With The Rick Springfield Chalkboard Mural I Created One Year Ago

When we first installed the giant diy chalkboard in the living room, the plan was to create murals for every holiday or season.  That proved difficult at first because creating murals on a giant chalkboard proved difficult.  However, I slowly started to get the hang of it.

Then, a new difficulty began to arise.  The better I got at realizing my visions for these murals, the harder it was to erase them when the next season came along.  And it wasn't just difficult for me.  As you can see in the photo below, Hippie had some trouble adjusting to the impermanent nature of this medium as well:


Hippie Protesting The Inevitable Destruction Of My Beatles Chalkboard Mural

I was sad to see The Beatles Mural go too but I reminded myself that the purpose of creating the chalkboard was so I could have an ever changing display, so I did what I had to do.

Then, around this time last year I created a mural in honor of the birthday of my favorite songwriter, performer and muse, Rick Springfield (click here to read that story).  The plan was to enjoy that until Halloween and then replace it with something appropriate for that season but when the time came I found I just wasn't ready to part with Chalkboard Rick Springfield.  I decided I would put it off until the winter holidays.

And then December rolled around and I still wasn't ready.  So this happened:


My Rick Springfield Winter Holiday Chalkboard Mural

It was the perfect compromise.  I got to keep Chalkboard Rick Springfield in my life and still exercise my drawing skills.  So I did this again when Valentine's Day rolled around:


My Rick Springfield Valentine's Day Mural

Then, over the course of three days in March, I created my favorite chalkboard mural of all (while listening to Rick Springfield's music of course).  I called it "Flowers From Hurricanes", taken from a line in one of his songs:



Me and My "Flowers From Hurricanes" Rick Springfield Chalkboard Mural

I didn't even think of erasing this one until a couple days ago when I realized it has been almost a year since I created the original Rick Springfield Chalkboard Mural.  Then it occurred to me that one of the things I admire about Rick is that he is always moving forward and doing new things.  I knew it was time for a change.

So although it kind of broke my heart, I finally forced myself to erase Chalkboard Rick Springfield...

And replaced him with Guitar Playing Chalkboard Rick Springfield!


Me With My New Rick Springfield Chalkboard Mural


Another one of many qualities I admire about the actual Rick Springfield is his persistence.  There have been many times in my life I've wanted to give up but haven't because of the impact that the example of his life and work has had on me.  I decided to commemorate that in this mural by adding a quote from an interview he did for Rolling Stone Magazine a couple years ago.


"My big ace in the hole is I never give up." - Rick Springfield

Now all I have to do is look at this mural to remind myself that I have the fortitude to keep going back to the drawing board, both literally and figuratively.

Thank you so much for reading.  I'd love to read about who or what inspires you if you would like to share in the comments below.

Until next time, happy creating!

Peace, Love and Art,
Victoria

If you liked this post, you may want to check these out:

My Many Muses: Rick Springfield (2016)

Back To The Drawing Board

Back To The Drawing Board 2014

My Many Muses: Rick Springfield (2015)






http://www.ibelieveinartshop.com




Sunday, August 13, 2017

I Believe In Artists: Rebecca Maloney

Artist Rebecca Maloney

I love following my fellow artists on social media, especially those who share not just their art but their entire creative journey.  Rebecca Maloney is one of those artists.  Her passion for art and belief in the positive power of creativity comes through in just about everything she does and this interview was no exception.

I'm so pleased to be able to share with you her vibrant art and valuable insight.  Enjoy!


"African Woman" By Rebecca Maloney, 36 x 36 Acrylic Mixed Media Collage on Canvas, 2005

Question: I know art speaks its own language but if you had to describe your work in only six words, what would they be?

Rebecca: Flow, Colorful, Curious, Powerful, Uplifting, Passionate.



Abstract Study by Rebecca Maloney, 8 x 10 Acrylic Mixed Media Collage on Canvas 2017

Question: Who is your favorite artist (in any medium) and how do they inspire you?

Rebecca: It’s so hard to pick just one. I have always been influenced by the work of Robert Motherwell, Romare Bearden, and Picasso. Their work pushed boundaries, told stories, and expressed emotion, while being visually stimulating and rich. I also love the work by an artist of today, Angela Davis Johnson. Her narrative paintings are beautiful. I love her use of color and textures.


"Red Circle" by Rebecca Maloney 16 x 20 Acrylic Mixed Media Collage on Canvas 2017

Question: What inspires you to create?

Rebecca: Music, books, LIFE! Also I am curious. I want to see what will happen when I create something that was once an inspired thought or image in my mind. What would a feeling in my heart look like on canvas? What would a song look like on a canvas? What does it mean when I take two images of something and put them together on a canvas? When I paint something realistic what am I learning as I interpret that onto canvas? How does my interpretation come through in pencil on paper? And then time falls away… where did I go? That’s all a part of the inspiration. And life, life is a journey and through art I can express its beautiful complexity.


"Mountains in Collage" by Rebecca Maloney, 20 x 23 Acrylic Mixed Media Collage on Canvas 2016

Question: What is your favorite part of your creative process?

Rebecca: My favorite part of the creative process is the inner journey it takes me on. Kind of like falling down the rabbit hole and coming out on the other side. When I look back I can see the journey and the adventure in it and what it taught me about myself. I end up with new self-awareness and also a tangible record to display or give someone.


 "The Persian Beauty" by Rebecca Maloney, 42 x 30 Acrylic Mixed Media Collage on Canvas 2012

Question: What is the most challenging part of your creative process and how do you meet that challenge?

Rebecca: The most challenging part is self-doubt. The struggle between heart and mind. And the wall I face sometimes that says “what for?” The book The War of Art by Steven Pressfield helped me with this. I practice surrendering to the unknown and not needing to know the reasons why. Also listening into my heart when I create. There is wisdom and inspiration in creativity that I will not give up on. It’s important. Meditation is a practice I use as well.


"Painting to Music" by Rebecca Maloney, 24 x 48 Acrylic on Canvas 2017

Question: And finally, what does "believing in art" mean to you?

Rebecca: Believing in art means trusting the value art has to change the world for the better always. It starts with us. If we nurture our creativity we can live from our hearts more. Which I believe is what can create positive change on the planet.




Thank you Rebecca for sharing your talent and inspiring words with us.

You can learn more about Rebecca and her art on her web site at RebeccaMaloneyArt.com and be sure to connect with her on Facebook and/or Instagram.

Click here to find more artist interviews and learn how you can apply to be featured.  You can also connect with I Believe In Art on Instagram and Facebook.

Until next time, happy creating!

Peace, Love and Art,

Victoria


http://www.ibelieveinartshop.com