Category Archives: paint by numbers

Politics Aside, the Life of an Artist – George Romney – English Portrait Painter

Long before becoming politicians and business tycoons, the Romney family made its name in art. According to “The Ancestors of Mitt Romney,” George Romney (1734 – 1802) was the first cousin of Miles Romney, who is an ancestor of the two-time presidential candidate.

Different from his 21st century relatives, George Romney was rather private. Little is known about his personal thought life or political opinions. Nevertheless, he has been etched into history books as a high society portrait painter. In fact, many of his followers believe that if it weren’t for the almighty dollar (or, guineas to the Lancashire native), he could have been a painter who completed whimsical scenes inspired by Shakespearean literature and mythical gods. But long before he began exercising his potential as an artist, George Romney had to grow up and find his footing in his chosen career.

George Romney was third born in a family of 11 children. His father, John, was a cabinet maker. George left school to apprentice with John at the young age of 11. Born and raised in Dalton-on-Furness Lancashire, Romney was 21 when he set out to apprentice with Christopher Steel, a local painter in Kendal. For the next two years, from 1755 – 1757, Romney painted small, full-length portraits. During his time there he married Mary Abbot, the daughter of a landlady.

In 1762, Romney left Kendal to travel north where he could paint portraits for money. He left his wife and children at home but sent them financial support and visited them on occasion.

Shortly after landing in London, his 1763 historical painting, The Death of General Wolfe, was awarded a premium from the Society of Arts. Still, he continued to paint portraits as a way of earning a living.

Romney’s travels continued on to Paris in 1764, where he studied the antique classicism of Eustache Le Sueur’s work. Then, from 1773 – 1775 he landed in Italy. Much of his time there was spent in Rome studying the frescoes of Raphael, as well as the work of Titan and Correggio in Venice and Parma. Also, throughout this time his artwork was on exhibition at the Free Society and Society of Artists in Great Britain. Upon returning to London, the Duke of Richmond became a regular client of Romney’s, which may have been a factor in his increased notoriety and speaks to the wave of notable society portraits he completed between 1776 and 1795.

Ultimately, Romney’s time spent touring benefited his work by maturing his art and broadening his abilities. He was known as a “fashionable portrait painter” throughout English society. Those who sat for him were flattered by the subtle qualities he emphasized to make them look their best. Rather than relying on color, Romney used lines to complement the men and women whom he posed in sculpturesque stances. This was especially evident in his portraits, Mrs. Cardwardine and Son (1775), as well as Sir Christopher and Lady Sykes (1786).

Romney’s artwork received much praise from his admirers and was able to support him financially but unlike other successful artists, Romney did not dedicate much time to socializing with fellow artists. Part of this may have been due to him deliberately separating himself from artists of the Royal Academy. It has been said that Sir Joshua Reynolds (who served as President of the Royal Academy) was displeased by Romney’s high fame and low costs. Seemingly determined to avoid such politics altogether, Romney’s sensitive and thoughtful nature led him to befriend people in philosophical and literary circles.

In the early 1780s, Romney met Emma Hart (also known as Lady Hamilton). Emma was said to be Romney’s muse because she appeared in a divine state in more than 50 of his paintings. His paintings of Emma strayed from his path of portraiture, and it is believe she was the muse that allowed him to enter an imaginary world. Romney painted Emma in settings “ranging from a bacchante to Joan of Arc.”

Throughout the last decade and a half of his career, Romney became even more enthralled with historical paintings. During this time he supported the Boydell’s Shakespere gallery and contributed one of his non-portrait paintings, The Tempest.

Towards the turn of the century, Romney’s health began to fail. In 1799 he returned to Kendal and reunited with his family. There, his estranged wife of over 40 years nursed him in his final days. George Romney died in Kendal and was buried in his birthplace of Dalton-in-Furness in November 1802.

Today, portrait painter George Romney has a legacy apart from his successful ancestors. The Romney Society believes there are “…2000 paintings and about 5000 drawings, scattered through 23 countries, on view in fifteen countries….” Over two centuries later, George Romney’s art lives on, as does the name he made famous.

However, this post is meant to recognize his artist style and some major pieces. For those who want to read more of Romney‘s story, visit this link: http://www.segmation.com/products_pc_patternset_contents.asp?set=ROM . Also, Segmation is proud to offer 35 digital George Romney patterns. By downloading these paint by numbers masterpieces, you can emulate one of the most fascinating artists who ever lived.

Enjoy the 35 George Romney –English portrait painter patterns . Segmation has for you and continue to learn and celebrate the life of a great artist.

Read more Segmation blog posts about other great artists:
Franz Marc German Expressionist Painter

Jan Gossaert – A Great Flemish Painter of Antiquity”

Émile Bernard – Making Ideas Art

Sources:

George Romney

George Romney – Britannica

George Romney – British Artist

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Basic Color Theory – Color Matters

Color Wheel

The world is filled with infinite shades of color, from a candy-apple-red sports car to a smoldering orange sunset to the crisp green of springtime grass. The popular color wheel simplifies the shades into 12 distinct colors to help illustrate the variations.

Arranged in a circle with 12 sections, the wheel presents a visual representation of the primary colors in the following order: blue, blue/green, green, yellow/green, yellow, yellow/orange, orange, red/orange, red, red/purple, purple, blue/purple. The colors are arranged in a chromatic sequence, with complementary shades opposite one another. These are all of the standalone colors that cannot be created by mixing other hues. Secondary and tertiary hues can then be created by mixing three primary colors (traditionally red, yellow, and blue).

The color wheel is further segmented into active and passive hues. Active colors (reds, oranges, yellows) will appear as more dominant when placed against passive shades, while the passive colors (purples, blues, greens) appear to recede when viewed near the active ones.

Read more Segmation blog posts about Primary colors:

A Closer Look at Complementary Colors

Gender/Color Divide

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Season’s Greeting Art!

Season’s Greetings Art Painting – All Ages can enjoy and have fun!

So relaxing and with no mess! What a brain teaser!

 Season’s Greetings

Season’s Greetings

Season’s Greetings Patterns Set from Segmation SegPlay® PC (see more details here)

These greetings are often spoken with good intentions to friends, family, and strangers during the months of December and January. “Happy New Year”, “Merry Christmas”, “Happy Holidays”, “Happy Hanukkah”, “Peace on Earth”, and “Season’s Greetings” are shouted with joy during this time period. In other languages, you can say “Boas Festas”, “Bon Carnaval”, “Feliz Navidad”, “Glædelig jul”, “Hyvää joulua”, “Iyi Seneler”, “Nollaig Shona Duit”, “Maligayang Pasko at Manigong Bagong Taon”, and “Joyeuses Fêtes”. Our Season’s Greetings artwork has been provided by Puffy P who creates edgy and humorous properties for licensing, with a specialization in the teen/tween, Latin, and women’s markets. You find snowmen, menorahs, snowflakes, Christmas trees, confetti, champagne, and cookies among the greetings!

This set contains 25 paintable patterns. We know you’ll enjoy coloring these great patterns!

Follow a number key to fill in sections of the picture and gradually, the image emerges in color segments. Paint-by-numbers meets modern technology in SegPlay® PC, a computerized paint-by-numbers program for Windows 7, 2000, XP, and Vista.

What our customers are saying about Segmation….

One of my minors in college was art so I am very familiar with a lot of the artists and their masterpieces. While I’m using your Segmation program I have a peace of mind while ironically feeling addicted to complete each work of art I begin. A big plus is I do not make a mess of my art room by bringing out all the paper, mediums, etc. to create my own works of art.*** I love SegPlay. I find myself using it as a fun mind challenge when I have nothing else to do. Years ago, I even told my mother about it when I set her up with a computer and she loves it too*** I have thoroughly enjoyed all the pattern sets that I have purchased from Segmation. Keep the pattern sets coming and know that we frustrated artists out here will keep buying them.*** My grandkids just love painting Segmation. Actually so do I. ***I am addicted to Segmation. My granddaughter is learning her numbers by using the simple paintings you offer. ***Thank you for coming up with such a fun.*** I love this Segplay game!!!!! I get so absorbed in it, that sometimes when I color a big spot, I wonder if I’ll have enough paint to cover it or finish the picture. ..I LOVE IT.***I enjoy my “Painting” so much.*** www.segmation.com

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Inspiring Digital Art

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I am a mother, educator, and neophyte artist; dabbling in mixed media and collage. My artistic journeys find me immersed in imagery and design constantly and I have had the pleasure of discovering so many fresh and contemporary artists and image makers along the way. I am writing to introduce you and other favorite artists of mine, to an impressive new digital art program; Segmation (www.segmation.com). It is my hope and genuine desire to see a happy partnership evolve.www.segmation.com

Segmation digital color by number is a relatively new program and is a small, upstart family business. They call this “the art of peaceful imaging” and it truly is a Zen experience for all ages. I initially purchased the affordable program this last fall and use it daily. I enjoy it to unwind after a busy day with work and family pressures. My five year old just loves it! Recently, I have begun to take it into preschool with me several times a week and my three and four years olds are growing more proficient with number recognition (and taking turns) every day. The privilege of my laptop in the classroom is also advancing their technology and fine motor skills. The program is also available for your iPad or iPhone, https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/segplay-mobile/id395127581, and, thus, convenient for the kids on road trips and waiting rooms.

There are so many great features in the Segmation program! Different setting allow you to switch modes and play one number at a time or without any numbers at all in case one would like to choose where to place color. You can reset each picture to begin again, so the children tend not to fight if the one they wanted has been taken over by a classmate or sibling. My favorite feature, though, is the direct link that takes you to a shop with a fairly abundant selection of art to please any palette. The Classics are available, such as Vincent van Gogh, Michelangelo, Albrecht Durer, Rubens, and Manet. More modern works are offered, like Paul Klee or Gustav Klimt.

There are fun holiday packs and gorgeous scenic photography offered, too. I feel that all I am missing, as a customer, is the availability of fun and funky illustrations more representative of today’s art movements and attractive to a broader range of youth and young adult tastes.

Thank you for allowing me to introduce to you Beth Feldman (beth@segmation.com) and Segmation, http://www.segmation.com. I hope you will give consideration to many wonderful future collaborations with this excellent educational company!

Sincerely:

Jill, Lansing, MI

If you enjoyed this Segmation blog post, you will also like:

— The Expressive Vincent van Gogh
https://segmation.wordpress.com/2013/04/08/the-expressive-vincent-van-gogh-2/

— Colors Change What is Beautiful
https://segmation.wordpress.com/2011/07/06/colors-change-what-is-beautiful/

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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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Make Artist Famous with Hole-Punch Portraits

There are many different mediums with which to create art. Some of those art constituents include various types of paint, chalk pastels, charcoal pencils, mosaic fragments, metals, and the like. But would you ever imagine that hole punch dots could be used to craft incredible portraits? An artist from the United Kingdom is proving to the world that these dots are definitely a worthy art medium.

Artist Nikki Douthwaite has made a practice of collecting hole punch dots for the past three years. After sorting them by shade, she uses the dots to create portraits, which are “inspired by magazine photos,” of pop icons. The artist was led to use this particular medium after studying Gorges Seurat (pointalist artist) in school.

How exactly does one craft a large portrait out of hole punch dots? The answer is, with patience and very carefully. Douthwaite uses tweezers to place the dots onto her canvas. She commented, “I use the dots like paint. I do different colors for the feel of the picture, and there are thousands of colors in each piece.”

According to the artist, the most time-consuming aspect of the portrait process is composing subjects’ hair. Facial features are reportedly “easy.” Oddly, Nikki Douthwaite admitted that “the younger and prettier (a subject is), the harder I seem to find it, as there seems to be less distinguishing features.” Douthwaite reported that each of her works of art takes 6 to 15 weeks to complete.

Some of Nikki Douthwaite’s portrait subjects include Marilyn Monroe, John Lennon, Jemi Hendrix, and Simon
Cowell. Monroe’s portrait required about 100,000 dots, whereas Cowell’s took an amazing 189,000 dots. The artist spent a liberal amount of time on all her pieces, include the portrait on John Lennon, which demanded 140,000 hole punch dots.

More and more artists are bringing art out of the box and demonstrating that the sky is truly the limit when it comes to art mediums. If hole punch dots are being used to create attention-grabbing art, imagine what other elements could be used to compose art that makes the world turn its head.

http://on.today.com/PQ7Ri4
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Color With Unconventional Art Schemes including Picasso

Artists have the ability to tap into the power of colors when they create a piece of art. Color plays a strong role in the way a work of art is perceived and experienced by the viewer. Certain colors can raise spirits while others can dampen moods. Some colors can invigorate and enliven while others can put people to sleep. How can artists use the power of colors to their advantage?

When you stand before your easel and blank canvas, you have a choice between using conventional colors in your painting to represent visible reality, or using unconventional color schemes to portray a subjective or internal reality. Conventional color schemes make sense if your objective is to accurately and faithfully paint the landscape or still life in front of you. However, if you choose an unconventional color scheme for your art, you have the opportunity to be expressive with your artwork. You can conjure emotions and elicit certain reactions from the viewer.

In the portrait painting by Picasso titled “Tete de Femme”, most of her flesh is a pasty white color, instead of the usual pinkish beige color of natural skin tones. Blue and light green brushstrokes form shadows on the face, while light red is used sparingly to create various accents.

Picasso continues the blue theme throughout the artwork, painting a blue background that gradually shifts from pale blue to dark blue. He also mixes blue with the black of the figure’s hair. The predominance of blue in its many variations is one of the distinguishing features of this artwork. A painting such as this uses color creatively and purposefully to evoke an emotional response from the viewer.

The next time you make a painting, pay careful attention to the colors that you use. Consider how different color choices will affect the final painting and try to imagine the kind of impact that those colors will have on people who view your painting.

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