Tag Archives: Art Education

Learn to Draw in a Short Period of Time

Is it possible for someone to learn to draw in a short period of time? More specifically, can one learn to draw well in a matter of weeks?

Dr. Betty Edwards would say, without hesitation, yes.

Can a Book Quickly Teach Someone to Draw?

In the 1970‘s, Edwards authored a booked titled Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain. Since the book’s release in 1979, it has sold over 2.5 million copies. The book’s popularity is due largely to the fact that its exercises garner results that any aspiring artist craves: the quick acquisition of skills necessary to draw beautifully.

Targeting the Right Brain is Key in Picking up Artistic Skills

The theory behind Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain is simple: tapping into the right side of the brain via practicing certain exercises can increase a person’s ability to swiftly obtain the artistic skills required for drawing. Concerning the right/left brain theory, scientist and neurosurgeon Richard Bergland said, “…your left brain is your verbal and rational brain; it thinks serially and reduces its thoughts to numbers, letters and words… your right brain is your nonverbal and intuitive brain; it thinks in patterns, or pictures.”

Because the right brain thinks in patterns and pictures and is non-verbal, it makes sense that primarily using that side of the brain when learning to draw would increase the chances of successfully gaining artistic skills.

This Simple Exercise Can Help You Learn to Draw

Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain is packed with tools that target the right brain and teach drawing skills. Here is just one exercise that can help you begin your journey of learning to draw; the exercise is called “Breaking Up Space”:

  • Only draw vertical and horizontal lines
  • Do not think in terms of words
  • Relax
  • Draw at a slow to medium pace
  • If you run out of space just retrace the lines you have already drawn

This exercise “helps put the left side (of the brain) to sleep and exercises the right side.” It’s important not think in words while practicing this. Using this technique is a first step you can take to begin to get your right brain accustomed to being used somewhat independently of your left brain. This creates an ideal mental environment for learning to draw.

Besides her book, Dr. Edwards also offers other materials that foster right-brained learning of artistic skills. These resources include DVDs, workshops, and more.

Are you a natural when it comes to drawing? If not, have you always wanted to learn to draw? Has intimidation discouraged you from trying? Share with us in the comments box below.

Read more Segmation blog posts about art and color:

Gregg Visintainer Finds an Emotional Outlet in Drawing

Figure Drawing Tips

Tips for Improving your Landscape Drawing Skills

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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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Melinda Donelan’s Blog Keeps Art Room Open 24/7

What does a Good Art Teacher Look LikeSummer vacation is here and classrooms across America are empty. We only know of one art room that is open all year long. The doors to Miss French Fry’s art room never close because she has mirrored the creativity her students experience in school with a bright, constructive and amusing blog, http://missfrenchfrymakesart.blogspot.com/.

“Teaching art is my dream job,” says Melinda Donelan (a.k.a. Miss French Fry). “I like to use my blog as an outlet for sharing some of the fun things we work on in the art room.” And share she does. About twice a week, Donelan publishes posts that show projects her students are working on as well as classroom décor/organization tips. Sometimes she even gives her readers a sneak peek into her personal life by revealing what she is making for dinner and her wardrobe selections for the week.

What sets this art teacher’s blog apart is her fusion of creativity and organization. Every post focused on art education starts by introducing the project and the inspiration behind it. Maybe she traveled to a museum or was inspired by a famous painter from the past. She explains how she does this intentionally, “When I develop lessons, regardless of what the objective is, I like to ensure that the projects tie in with something else, whether it’s a cross curricular connection or a piece of literature.” After tying each project to a deeper purpose, she springboards into the details of the project and shows her students bringing their artwork to life by using pictures. She has lots of pictures that show readers what the students are doing step-by-step. She also shows a finished project, too.

In reading her blog, it is clear that Miss French Fry really enjoys her job. “One of the biggest things I enjoy about teaching art is celebrating my students’ uniqueness,” she says. “Before teaching art, I worked as a special education teacher for students with behavioral and emotional disabilities. It’s been wonderful incorporating that background into my art room and definitely inspired quite a few blog posts.”

Miss French Fry Makes Art: Art Room Sub TubMiss French Fry’s blog posts can inspire more than just art teachers. All teachers could benefit from some of her posts. For example, the “Sub Tub” is an organizer she has created to store and label lesson plans for substitute teachers. All in all, her clever instructions make it simple for any teacher to feel prepared when they leave their classroom in the hands of a substitute.

In this 24/7 world, always accessible art education resources are hard to come by. With her blog, http://missfrenchfrymakesart.blogspot.com/, Melinda Donelan is changing this. Explore the adventurous, industrious and sometime wacky world of an art educator. Get some fresh ideas and walk away feeling encouraged and more creative.

 

Read more Segmation blog posts about colorful artists:

Is an art education necessary?

What does a Good Art Teacher Look Like?

Reviving Art as the Heart of Education

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Liza Amor Shows Las Vegas What Happens in the Art Room

www.segmation.comLas Vegas is known to draw international tourists but has recently been drawing art enthusiasts as well. Art galleries throughout Sin City are reporting increased traffic and sales. The University of Las Vegas Art Galleries director Jerry Schefcik credits the creativity of hotel design for infusing art into Las Vegas culture, but the art featured in galleries goes far beyond casino kitsch. Schefcik says, “…the overall art scene in Vegas is growing because it attracts artists who think outside the box.”

One Las Vegas artist and art educator who fits this description is Liza Amor. She uses out of the box ideas to ensure her students’ artwork is seen and appreciated.

From a young age Liza was drawn to art. At four years old, drawing was one of her favorite pastimes. And as one of Liza’s favorite adages goes, “Practice makes perfect.” By the time she was looking to attend college, Liza had talent that could take her places. She was able to attend State University of New York at Buffalo.

While in college, Liza was greatly impacted by an after school art program she assisted with. Recognizing the importance of art education encouraged her career path and put her on a professional mission.

Today, Liza lives in Las Vegas and believes it is important for the community to see what happens in the art room. When people realize how valuable art education is, there is a higher chance (despite devastating budget cuts) art classes will remain in public schools.

To accomplish this, Liza partners with local galleries, like City of the World gallery, to see that her students’ artwork is showcased throughout Las Vegas. She also makes work available online through the virtual art gallery, Artsonia. This allows students to share their art with family members beyond Nevada’s borders.

art-classHer students are encouraged by having their art showcased. They are proud to post their work and appreciative to have such opportunities. “There is a big difference when you believe in them,” says Liza. When preparing them for their exhibits, she impresses the importance of this honor, telling them that they are representing themselves and their school.

After putting on annual art shows for her students, serving on the board of Art Educators of Nevada and displaying her own work throughout Las Vegas, Liza Amor was awarded National Art Education Association’s 2014 Nevada Art Educator of the Year. Beyond her talent and teaching skills, Liza is showing Las Vegas the value of art education. Right now she is on top of a cutting edge art scene and the world is beginning to take notice.

Read more Segmation blog posts about colorful artist:

Is an art education necessary?

What does a Good Art Teacher Look Like?

Reviving Art as the Heart of Education

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There is more to Color than meets the Eye

There is more to Color than meets the EyeWhat is better than taking in a beautiful array of color? This can happen in a natural setting, where autumn leaves are turning crisp and ocean waves rush to make whitecaps. It can also occur in an art gallery, where wall hangings mesmerize art enthusiasts, encouraging them to stop and be still.

These are examples of times when people give color their full attention. In most instances, however, color is taken for granted. People go days and even weeks without taking in the vibrancy surrounding life. How can this be? Color is everywhere.

The Complexity of Color

One possible reason people let the miracle of color pass them by is because it is so complex. Sadly, some will never truly understand how involved and deliberate color is. On the other hand, many people cannot contain their fascination; these tend to be those who dedicate their lives to pursuing the intricacies of color. A woman who does this is Jude Stewart. She is the author of Roy G. Biv – An Exceedingly Surprising Book about Color. In this book, the designer explores how there is more to color than meets the eye.

Roy G. Biv

For some time, people have been trying to fit color into the box of human understanding. This may be the reason behind the pressure that was put on Issac Newton to claim there were seven colors in a rainbow – not six.

He decreed red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet as a rainbow’s colors. Taking the first letter of each color creates the acronym Roy G. Biv. Without indigo (the color that he rushed to fit in) this helpful memorization technique could not exist.

Color is Cultural and Universal

Color exists beyond human understanding and advances human understanding at the same time. This is why people groups use color to set themselves apart. Despite efforts to be distinct, color also brings the world together.

In Roy G. Biv, Stewart explains how the concept of color differs between cultures. Across the world, people attach various meanings to colors. For instance, in Japan green is called blue. But color also has a way of bringing the world together. One example of the universality of color is how speakers of different languages list colors in a similar sequence. The widely accepted order goes black, white, red, green, yellow, blue, brown.

Ultimately, color is an earthly phenomenon that may never be totally understood. But people like Jude Stewart are going to continue trying to make sense of it all. If for nothing else, than to encourage people to stop, be still, and take in the world around them.

Read more Segmation blog posts about Art and Color:

The Most Colorful Cities In The World

The World’s Favorite Color

Pursuing a Career in Art

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What does a Good Art Teacher Look Like?

What does a Good Art Teacher Look LikeSome people are gifted with artistic abilities. Others develop them in time. Most diligent students can become creative artists with the help of good art teachers.

Excellent art teachers are memorable additions to the education process. In many cases, art teachers play monumental roles in the lives of students. Therefore, the question stands: What makes a good art teacher? Listed below are three character traits of a good art teacher.

Passion

Passion is contagious. An art teacher fills the classroom with enthusiasm when he or she enjoys work, continues developing art skills, and encourages students. One of the most effective ways to do this involves creating visual aids. Students need these examples and enjoy seeing a teacher display his or her abilities.

Perspective

When art teachers educate students about perspective, it usually involves discussing a work of art from the artist’s point of view. Another definition of perspective ought to be considered though. When reviewing art work, a good teacher keeps an open mind and invites the student to explain his or her masterpiece. This enables students to express themselves and develop creativity.

One of the biggest mistakes an art teacher can make is failing to consider personal perspective in light of how the project is graded. There is always a story behind an art project and many times it is not what others expect.

Balance

As mentioned above, art teachers need to be passionate, fun-loving, and value the efforts of their students. All the while, they must remember the title of teacher; this role requires a person to instruct the classroom and challenge students, even if it means being “tough” at times. These traits are essential to ensuring students better themselves in areas of creativity and art. Great art teachers know how to be fun and constructive all at once.

When describing a good art teacher, many statements come to mind. One being, teachers are “not born but made”. Over time, these individuals become skilled in the art of teaching. Which seems entirely appropriate for a good art teacher.

Read more Segmation blog posts about Art Projects:

Bauhaus Art School

Why Are School Buses Yellow?

Google Art Project Makes Art More Accessible

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Creative Connections Strengthen Schools

ImageThere is no secret about it: art makes for an exciting learning environment. Art projects are the first introduction to education for young children. Now, with advancements in art education and the creativity of culture, schools are finding additional benefits to these activities. Art serves as a connector that unifies students and strengthens schools.

Even though art programs have been cut in recent years, teachers and administrators are using classrooms as catalysts for creativity. One example of this is how teachers use hands-on projects to promote learning traditional subject matters. In addition, entire schools are coming together to celebrate the artwork of these non-traditional settings.

As a result, art is becoming the ultimate educator. Even without art classes and proper funding, faculties are using creativity to excite students and promote learning.

Teachers Take Charge of Creativity in the Classroom

More than ever, teachers are picking up the slack for consequences of limited funding. Many educators can be found encouraging students to showcase creativity in the classroom. Using art to inform students about other subject areas is proving to be effective and productive. In the end, students learn in memorable ways and create something they are proud to show off. They are expressing their education, making classroom walls the new chalkboards.

Schools Connect Students in Creative Ways

Administrators are encouraging teachers to make art a part of learning. They are celebrating this by coming up with creative ways to showcase art in every classroom. Some are using murals to display art from all students. This encourages community involvement; different age groups learn to appreciate the artwork of other students, both younger and older. More so, collecting all artwork allows students and teachers to feel invested in schoolwide projects. Likewise, it provides a great backdrop for the learning environment.

Art is a powerful tool for education. It can enhance the atmosphere of learning in any school. When teachers and administrators partner together, they can overcome obstacles of inadequate funding that impacts art education. This unifies a school and inspires student communities.

Read more Segmation blog posts about Art Education:

How to Encourage Creativity in Children

Inspiring Digital Art

Reviving Art as the Heart of Education

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