Category Archives: unique art forms

First Female Tattoo Artist Starts a Cultural Phenomenon

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There is something magical about art. Music, poetry, dance, and drama all hold an enchantment so real that people will do just about anything to make contact with the particular art form that makes their life worth the living. Art is so captivating that many people desire to wear it, or even to become it. This is made evident by the millions of dollars that are spent each year on designer clothing and one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry. Those who just can’t seem to get close enough to art often become a living, breathing work of art. How? By getting tattooed.

Some would agree that tattoos are not only works of art, but means by which individuals become art. This is fascinating when you think of it. For relatively small amounts of money, someone can enter a tattoo parlor having 100 percent natural-toned flesh and exit having had a section of their body shaded with vibrant colors. What beautiful things tattoos are.

Tattoos used to be considered primarily masculine. However, the times have changed drastically. More women were tattooed in 2012 than men (in the United States). Also, tattoos are evolving into more feminine, beautiful works of art. In some ways, tattoos are becoming a female affair. This is due in part to a woman named Maud Wagoner — the first American female tattoo artist.

Maud Wagoner was a woman like no other. While most ladies of the Victorian era were studying homemaking and vying for a husband and children, Maud was doing all she could to become a skilled tattooist. She went so far as to “trade a date with her husband-to-be for tattoo lessons.” Her talent for tattooing was passed down to her daughter, Lotteva Wagoner, who was also a tattoo artist.

Thanks to artistic forerunners like Maud Wagoner, body art on women is becoming more the rule than the exeption. For art lovers, this should be good news. After all, when done by excellent artists, tattoos turn people into walking works of art, and that is a beautiful thing.

Sources:

http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/photobooth/2013/01/slide-show-a-secret-history-of-women-and-tattoo.html#slide_ss_0=3  

Coming soon: Read our next blog post to learn what an artistic impression a colorful front door can make on guests and neighbors.

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Gregg Visintainer Finds an Emotional Outlet in Drawing

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Most artists would agree that art is an emotional outlet of epic proportions. Art is truly miraculous in the way that it helps people process through difficulties. The amazing thing is that even when art is created in hard times, it somehow always turns out beautiful in some way. This is especially true if the artist created the art work from an authentic place emotionally. Gregg Visintainer is an artist who can identify with the idea that art is an emotional outlet. Not only that, for Gregg art has also become a major form of income.

Gregg Visintainer has been drawing since he was a child. In school the young artist would use his class time to perfect his art of drawing. While he loved drawing, Visintainer wasn’t convinced he could make a career out of it. As a result of this belief, Gregg essentially gave drawing up after high school.

When he was 24, after 6 years away from creativity, Gregg picked his art back up and began drawing again. This rebirth of art was brought on by an emotionally difficult time in Visintainer’s life. During this time he drew a piece titled “Lonely World.” This drawing took approximately 250 hours and 3 months to complete. Gregg so enjoyed expressing his emotions through “Lonely World” that he continued drawing, eventually establishing a company called Viz Art Ink.

Viz Art Ink features drawings made of pen and ink. The drawings are complex and full of hidden meaning. From far off, a Viz Art Ink drawing appears to contain one primary image, but when one gets closer it becomes clear that there are “hidden pictures, words, messages, and a lot of meaning that relates to each theme.”

Gregg has quite a following of fans, but his talent has also been noticed by big name companies like Volcom, Element Skateboards, DC Shoes, Dregs Skateboards, Skinit, Grateful Dead, Falken Tires, and Disney. In fact, Gregg has worked with each of these companies in the past few years.  It’s clear that these major companies see the value in Gregg Visintainer’s dynamic pen and ink drawings.

Even when they have abandoned their art for a season, true artists tend to find their way home to art making eventually, even if it takes them a lifetime to do it. Things didn’t take so long for Gregg Visintainer. Are you an artist who once forfeited creating art, only to return to art making during a difficult season of life? Tell Segmation your story in the “comments” section below.

Sources:

http://www.vizartink.com/pages/about-us

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Ernst Ludwig Kirchner: A Father of Expressionism

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There are artists who create out of the best that is in them, and their contribution to the world is both beautiful and significant. Other artists create not just pieces of art, but art movements that actually shape culture and change the art world. Ernst Ludwig Kirchner was an artist who created significant pieces of artwork and changed the world through his creations.

On May 6, 1880, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner was born in Aschaffenburg. He studied art and architecture at the Technische Hochschule, which was located in Dresden. It was at the Technische Hochschule that Kirchner was exposed to artistic subjects such as freehand drawing, perspective drawing, and art history. He thrived at his university and graduated in 1905.

Kirchner made many friends while studying at Technische Hochschule, a few of which were Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, Erich Heckel, and Fritz Bleyl. It was with these friends that Ernst Ludwig Kirchner developed an artistic group called Die Brucke (“The Bridge”). This group would mature to become extremely significant to the world of art, for it was partly from Die Brucke that Expressionism was born.

Die Brucke had one main goal: “to eschew the prevalent traditional academic style and find a new mode of artistic images-1expression.” Die Brucke’s goal was reached and even exceeded as the group’s founders integrated older artwork of master artists with new art techniques. All of this innovative artistic activity was headed up by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, the mastermind behind Die Brucke.

Although Ernst Ludwig Kirchner was a world changing artist, he was also a tortured soul. He ended his life on June 15, 1938, depriving society of the treasure that he was. While Kirchner is no longer with us, his art is, and it is still speaking to us all these years later. 
Indeed, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner was more than an artist — he was a father of an artistic style called Expressionism, which is now cemented into modern culture.

In your opinion, what artists changed culture and society in significant ways? Who is your personal hero of the art world? We’d love to hear from you, so feel free to share your thoughts in the “comments” section below.

Sources:

http://www.bruecke-museum.de/englkirchner.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernst_Ludwig_Kirchner

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Museum Curator Elevates Prestige of Paint by Number Art

The argument about what does and does not qualify as art has created tension in the art world for centuries. Some people think only fine art should be considered “real” art. Others believe that primitive, rustic, rugged pieces crafted by the unschooled are indeed genuine works of art. This is just the type of debate that has surrounded paint by number paintings, which were created from mass-produced paint by number kits, for the past several decades.

While many art elitists do not believe paint by number paintings are true works of art, William L. Bird, Jr., believes they are. Bird should know – he is not only the curator at the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution, he is also highly educated on the subject of paint by number.

Bird raised the prestige of paint by number art in his book, Paint by Number: The How-To Craze that Swept the Nation. In his book, Bird gives an explanation of how paint by number was born, who marketed it, and why it was such a success. Also, the author explains the level of artistic skill it took to create paint by number kits. Understanding these facets of this technique and brand is helping the public see paint by number paintings for what they truly are – a form of art.

William L. Bird, Jr., further championed paint by number paintings when he displayed them in an art exhibition in 2001 at the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution.

An individual who visited Bird’s exhibition commented to Bird that several paint by number paintings from “identical kits” had variations painted in them. (These were variations that the artists themselves had “painted outside the lines” to add.) This individual wondered if such artistic inconsistencies helped these particular paintings qualify as art. Bird affirmed, “By expressing preferences and making choices, these painters are taking the first steps toward art. I think you can charitably argue that in these cases it was art.”

Do you love paint by number and Segmation? Whether you like being a perfect painter or great digital artist, or simply have fond childhood memories of coloring inside the lines, your experience is valuable. We want to hear your story in the comment section below. What does paint by number mean to you?

Sources:

http://www.cabinetmagazine.org/issues/15/paintbynumbers.php

http://www.amazon.com/Paint-Number-How-To-Craze-Nation/dp/1568982828

Note: The top photo used in this post does not belong to Segmation; it was found at http://mocoloco.com/art/archives/020982.php.

Coming soon: Read Segmation’s heartwarming article about various individuals’ much-loved childhood memories of paint by number.

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Professionals Integrate Paint by Number Into Their Careers

Paint by number art has become something of an American legend. Thousands upon thousands have fond childhood memories of creating amazing paintings using paint by number guides. Some individuals are so moved by paint by number that they have actually integrated this form of art into their careers. Such people see the true value of paint by number kits in that they helps “everyday people” paint works of art that they can truly be proud of.

One individual who has beautifully integrated paint by number into his career is Trey Speegle. Speegle has made a name for himself by taking paint by number paintings and “recontextualizing” them, then “combining them with words and phrases that deconstructs the genre in a variety of ways.” Trey Speegle strives to bring certain themes out of vintage paint by number paintings; themes like hope, transformation, longing, and love have all been drawn out by Speegle in the past. This amazing artist works with Anthropologie Home, Stella McCartney, and Fred Perry, among other people and businesses. Trey Speegle truly brings the best out of paint by number paintings.

Artsist JoDavid loves paint by number so much that he has invented a “Paint by Number Salon” in he and Marlow Harris’ place of residence. Their salon is garnering attention from the media, and rightly so – the space is filled with 160 paint by number paintings. The salon is greatly inspirational to JoDavid and Marlow Harris, as well as to many others. Of the paint by number salon and paint by number itself, Harris commented, “It’s beautiful – it’s art.”

Karen Savell’s career as a paint by number art restorer testifies to her fondness for the art form. Savell began restoring paint by number paintings in 1999, and soon people began to notice her talent. After a few years of finishing others’ paint by number paintings and restyling classic pieces, Savell began her own business restoring these amazing works of art. Today she is thrilled to be living her dream of working with paint by number art.

How has paint by number made its mark on your life? Whether you love creating perfect paintings or have knit paint by number into your daily life or career, your experience is unique and valuable. Segmation wants to hear your personal story in the comments section below. What does paint by number mean to you?

Sources:

http://treyspeegle.com/bio/

http://unusuallife.com/paint-by-numbers-house/

http://vimeo.com/38068832

http://www.paintbynumbermuseum.com/karen_savelle_intro

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Learn to Make a Custom Paint by Number Pillow

Have you been keeping up with Segmation’s paint by number blog posts this month? If so, you are aware of the impact this art form has had on American culture. Do you love paint by number? We hope so, because this post outlines how to make your very own paint by number pillow.

The first step in creating your paint by number pillow is to obtain the supplies you need: paintbrushes, a fabric marker, masking tape, paint pot strips, paint by number guide, fabric paint, “heavyweight” cotton (to be used for back of the pillow), hand sewing needle, thread, “plain, light colored utility fabric for pillow front,” scissors, and Poly-fil. Once you have gathered your supplies, you are ready to move into the crafting stage of the project.

Next, you will print a paint by number guide (you can download the right side of the guide at http://abeautifulmess.typepad.com/files/rightside.pdf, and the left side at http://abeautifulmess.typepad.com/files/leftside.pdf). Once each side of your guide is printed, you will tape the sheets together to make a whole guide. Place the guide atop your fabric (intended for use as the front of the pillow) and cut the fabric to fit the size of the guide.

Now for the fun part! Trace the paint by number guide onto your pillow fabric. You can do this by hanging/taping the paint by number guide with the fabric ontop to a window. The sunlight coming through the window will help you to see the paint by number lines. Use your fabric marker to trace the guide onto the fabric as carefully as possible. (Don’t forget to include the numbers.) Make sure you do this on a sunny day!

Next, you will number your paints and begin to add color to your pillow front. Paint your picture by simply matching up the numbers of paint with the numbers on the pillow guide. This will result in a beautiful paint by number pillow front!

How much do you enjoy paint by number and Segmation? Whether you like being a perfect painter, great digital artist, or have fond childhood memories of coloring inside the lines, your experience is unique. We want to hear your story in the comment section below. What does paint by number mean to you?

Note: this project was adapted from http://www.abeautifulmess.com/2012/07/make-your-own-paint-by-numbers-pillow.htmlhere you will find more in-depth instructions for this project as well as directions for putting a back on the pillow, etc.

Coming soon: Read Segmation’s exclusive article about the unique ways many professionals have incorporated paint by number into their careers.

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Childhood Stories of Paint by Number

Do you recall your favorite childhood pastime? For many people, art making was perhaps their most loved activity. Some individuals have fond memories of drawing, molding play dough, and finger painting. More specifically, creating amazing paintings using paint by number kits ranks high on the list of favorite childhood activities for scores of people. Are you one of those individuals who has cherished memories of paint by number?

Amy, a woman from Indianapolis, holds her paint by number recollections close to her heart. She remembers growing up admiring two paintings of beautiful women that were displayed in her bedroom. “I remember staring at them so often and dreaming about their lives,” Amy commented. When she was older, Amy discovered that her mother had painted those pictures using paint by number kits. Though she was not as talented at paint by number as her mother, Amy still treasured those paintings that brought joy and life to her imagination.

Audrey, an individual who grew up in a farmhouse in Minnesota, recalls sitting at her kitchen table while painting ballerinas as a child. Audrey admitted that she is not necessarily an artist, but said that paint by number gave her the opportunity to become one. Her experience with paint by number was unforgettable as it allowed her to “escape into the world” of the ballerinas she painted. Audrey is grateful to have these priceless memories.

Another childhood paint by number artist, Karen, remembers with love the time her parents gifted her with a paint by number kit, the theme of which was covered bridges. Karen noted that the covered bridges she painted were only recognizable from a distance. In her own words, this was her “first awareness of how Impressionist paintings were made.”

How much do you enjoy paint by number and Segmation? Whether you love being a perfect painter, great digital artist, or have fond childhood memories of coloring inside the lines, your experience is unique. We want to hear your story in the comment section below. What does paint by number mean to you?

Sources:

Retrorenovation.com

mnpraireroots.wordpress.com

childrensmuseum.org

Coming soon: Read Segmation’s exciting article on how to easily make your own paint by number pillow. You won’t want to miss it!

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