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FEATURED ARTIST: OMASTE WITKOWSKI

Beach Stick by Omaste Witkowski

Beach Stick by Omaste Witkowski

“My work varies between painting & photography, and I love working with vivid colors, varied textures and unique compositions.”
-Omaste Witkowski

On Omaste Witkowski’s website owFotoGrafik.com, you will find a large variety of Abstracts, Landscapes, Wildlife, Florals, Antiques, and Architectural Studies. She welcomes the opportunity to discover beauty in every subject she comes across no matter how large or small. When she creates, she is always attempting to make something that is unusual. It is essential to me to display her images as uniquely as she can. To express a moment or object in a new way. To make it her’s and share her vision and imagination. Visit Omaste’s website owFotoGrafik.com to learn more about Omaste and her work, including commissions and prints. Contact Omaste directly at owfotografik@gmail.com.

Stop by SegPlay Mobile on iPhone/iPad and Android to see Omaste Wilowski’s fascinating abstract images of dogs. You’ll enjoy using the imagination that these patterns provide as you color your new canine friends!

Read more Segmation blog posts about Art:

Art Therapy Treats more than the Heart

Extracting Art from Science

What does a Good Art Teacher Look Like?

Be a Artist in 2 minutes with Segmation SegPlay® Mobile for iPhone/iPad (see more details here)

Enjoy more from Omaste!

Stare by Omaste Witkowski

Stare by Omaste Witkowski

Grass Walk by Omaste Witkowski

Grass Walk by Omaste Witkowski

Waiting by Omaste Witkowski

Waiting by Omaste Witkowski

Resting by Omaste Witkowski

Resting by Omaste Witkowski

Sunset Pose by Omaste Witkowski

Sunset Pose by Omaste Witkowski

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More Anders Leonard Zorn – Swedish Portrait Painter

 Anders Leonard Zorn

Anders Leonard Zorn

Anders Leonard Zorn was born in Sweden in 1860. Though his parents never married, he was allowed to take his father’s name. Raised by his grandparents, Zorn spent his childhood in Yvraden and attended Mora Strand and a grammar school in Enkoping.

From a very early age, Anders Zorn showed great potential as an artist. He desired to become a famous sculptor and spent many hours carving pieces of wood into realistic objects. His love of sculpting and obvious talent transferred well into the realm of painting. From 1875 to 1880, Zorn studied this art medium at the Royal Academy of Arts in Stockholm, Sweden.

Initially, Zorn enjoyed painting watercolors. His 1880 watercolor, In Mourning, drew attention for its detail and realistic portrayal of a grieving woman.

Knowing that he wanted to marry, Zorn set off at an early age to make a substantial living as an artist. Fortunately, his talent made him quite successful all over Europe. He had a unique knack for painting portraits. Anders Zorn believed that a portrait should be painted with background detail appropriate to the subject’s own life setting. He became well known for his true representation of both culture and character when painting a portrait. Zorn’s portraits contained a variety of subjects from the esteemed political and royal figures of his day to typical rustic images. In England, Zorn was especially known for his nude paintings.

By 1885, Zorn had made his fortune and was able to marry his wife Emma. They spent the first eleven years of their marriage traveling abroad, but always returned to Sweden for the summer. Emma was instrumental in Zorn’s career. She willingly took on the role of critical analyst. It was during these years that Zorn mastered the complicated task of painting realistic water scenes, which is a feat he is still praised for today.

Zorn switched from painting watercolors to painting oils in 1887. The second oil painting he completed, A Fisherman in St Ives, was a quick success.

By this point in his life, Zorn had mastered three incredible talents. First, he was making money painting realistic and lively portraits. Second, he could paint light reflecting off water – a rare technique at the time. Third, the paintings he created during his summers in Sweden proved he could manipulate light and create both shadows and sunbeams. To combine all three, Zorn painted many subjects in and around water.

Being recognized as a great artist allowed Zorn the opportunity to travel to the United States in 1893. He served as superintendent of the Swedish art exhibition at the Columbian World Fair held in Chicago. Throughout the rest of his life he traveled back to the United States for work and pleasure. His talent for painting portraits had reached America and he was in constant demand. Two Presidents sat for Anders Zorn; Grover Cleveland and William Taft.

Zorn also enjoyed etching. He even illustrated an etching of Theodore Roosevelt. It was an art form that Zorn began practicing in the early 1880’s and continued to use as he created masterpieces throughout his life. In all, he completed 289 etchings, most of which were portraits.

In 1896, Anders and Emma moved back to Sweden for good. A cottage from his grandfather’s farm was relocated and the Zorn’s spent several years remodeling and expanding it. The pair quickly immersed and invested themselves in the community. They started reading programs, a library, and a children’s home, in addition to opening a local school.

Zorn’s passion was to discover a way to preserve Swedish folk music. His work sparked a renaissance of folk music in Sweden and kept it alive. Even today, the most prestigious award for a folk musician is the Zorn award.

Zorn continued to paint until his health began deteriorating. In 1920, Anders Leonard Zorn passed away. A diverse group of people attended his funeral as a true testament to a life of dedication and talent; from the Swedish royal family to colorful characters from all walks of life and from many places.

The Zorn cottage in Sweden still stands today. Part of it is devoted to a museum. It is preserved not only as a historical testament to the era in which Zorn lived, but in memory of a giving, adventurous man who shared his talents with the world.

There are 33 paintable patterns.

Would you like to enjoy painting Anders Leonard Zorn masterpieces yourself? (see more details here)

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Marketing Art in the Digital World: An Introduction

By nature, artists are creative people – we are visionaries and dreamers. Artists are usually more comfortable behind the easel than in front of a calculator or spreadsheet.

Yet to be a successful artist in today’s world, you need to be a smart business person as well. It is important for working artists to have some degree of business knowledge in order to thrive in today’s art market. If this sounds daunting, just remember that art and business do not have to be like oil and water. When it comes to marketing and promoting your artwork, you have the advantage of using your imagination to conjure up innovative methods for selling your artwork.

These days artists have the advantage of pursuing both traditional and modern ways of marketing their artwork. Thanks to the Internet, it’s easier than ever for artists to share their work with a wide audience all over the world. Artists no longer have to wait for their “big break”, because they can create a buzz themselves. The Internet allows artists to take their careers into their own hands in a way that was never before possible.

How can artists use the Internet to market and promote their artwork?

A few examples of Internet marketing include: having your own website; writing your own blog; posting on related blogs; participating in social networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook; joining online art galleries and artist forms that are devoted specifically to the needs of artists… and the list goes on.

In future articles we will discuss various aspects of art marketing in greater detail. In the meantime, feel free to post any questions or ideas that you may have on the topic of marketing art, whether traditional (off-line) or contemporary (online).

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Anders Leonard Zorn

 Anders Leonard Zorn

Anders Leonard Zorn

Anders Leonard Zorn (1860 – 1920) was one of Sweden’s best portrait painters. Although skilled as a sculptor and printmaker, Anders achieved his fame with the use of oils and watercolors depicting rustic life, nudes, and an assortment of portraits. His skill with portraits lies with his ability to depict the individual character of the person.

Lighting and the treatment of water were particularly extraordinary in his works. Anders believed that a portrait should be painted in an environment that was natural for the model.

Our collection of Anders Zorn patterns contains many of his most recognized works including Margit, Midsummer Dance, Our Daily Bread, A Fisherman in St. Ives, and Night Effect. There are also several self-portraits included.

There are 33 paintable patterns.

Would you like to enjoy painting Anders Leonard Zorn masterpieces yourself? If so, visit http://www.segmation.com/products_pc_patternset_contents.asp?set=ALZ to see our Anders Leonard Zorn patterns. These patterns are basically paintable images of Zorn’s paintings.

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Paul Cezanne Post-impressionist Painter

When I judge art, I take my painting and put it next to a God made object like a tree or flower. If it clashes, it is not art.
Paul Cezanne

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Creative Japanese Artist – Katsushika Hokusai

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New Pattern Set for SegPlayPC Katsushika Hokusai recently released (see more details here)

Katsushika Hokusai (1760- 1849) was an artist whose life demonstrated the joy found in hard work, continuous learning, and perseverance. This Japanese artist went by many names throughout his life, each of which reflected a different period of artistic transition. His most well-known name is Katsushika Hokusai; a name associated with the most famous of his pieces.

Katsushika Hokusai’s love of learning about and producing art began at the age of six. Most experts believe that Hokusai’s relationship with art began as he watched his father add artwork to the mirrors he made. Throughout his adolescent years Hokusai was exposed to the world of art while working in a bookshop and as an apprentice to a wood-carver. At the age of eighteen, he was accepted to an art studio called Katsukawa Shunsho which practiced the wood block print style called Ukiyo-e.

For a decade Hokusai immersed himself in the Ukiyo-e style, which focused on creating images of the courtesans. In 1779, while still studying at the Katsukawa Shunsho studio, he published his first prints. These prints were published under the name Shunro to reflect both the studio and its founder.
When Shunsho, the studio’s master artist, passed away, Hokusai began to study other styles of art, including European styles. His dabbling eventually led to his expulsion from the studio since many of the styles he studied rivaled Ukiyo-e. Hokusai was embarrassed by this event, yet, his embarrassment only served to motivate his development and inspire his artistic career.

At this point in his life Hokusai began expanding his subjects to landscapes and the daily life of individuals from all social levels. This was a breakthrough not only for Hokusai, but for the Ukiyo-e style as well.

He became associated with Tawaraya School of art and thus adopted the name Tawaraya Sori. Under this name he published brush paintings and illustrations for books of humorous poems.

By 1800, at the height of his career, he had adopted the name Katsushika Hokusai. Hokusai published two collections of landscapes: Famous Sights of the Eastern Capital and Eight Views of Edo. At this point, Hokusai had begun to attract his own students.

This period of Hokusai’s life is also marked by stories that testify to his fearless and self- promoting character. One of these stories describes Hokusai painting a portrait of a Buddhist Priest that was approximately 600 feet long. It is said that he painted this enormous piece by using a broom and large buckets full of ink.

Another story tells of Hokusai competing against other artists of his day in the court of the Shogun Lyenari. Hokusai won the competition by painting a blue curve on a piece of paper and then chasing a chicken, whose feet had been dipped in red paint, across the curve. When asked to describe his piece, Hokusai explained it as the Tatsuta River with red maple leaves floating in it.

In the early 1800’s Hokusai went through many stylistic transitions and took on several different names. Under the name Taito he created the Hokusai Magna as well as other art manuals. This endeavor attracted more students. The twelve volumes he created included lessons and thousands of drawings of animals, religious figures, and everyday life.

In 1820 he changed his name again, this time to Litsu. Under this name he painted several pieces that made him forever famous in Japan. These works include Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji and The Great Wave off Kanagawa. During this time he also began to direct his work towards detailed images of single flowers and birds.

In 1834 he changed his name yet again to Gakyo Rojin Manji, which translates as “the old man mad about art.” This was an incredibly fitting name for Hokusai at the time. During this stage of his life, Hokusai believed strongly that the work he had complete before the age of 70 didn’t amount to very much. He felt that he was only beginning to understand structures and how to make images come alive in his paintings. He prayed for a long life that would allow him to continue learning.

In 1839 his studio caught fire and was destroyed. Still, Hokusai continued to paint. At the age of 87 he painted Ducks in a Stream.
True to his continually inquisitive personality, Katsushika Hokusai lay on his death bed in 1849 praying for more time to become a better painter. He is remembered for his incredible talent, but also for being a man passionate about art who found joy in the struggle to learn and become more than what he was.

Our collection of Hokusai patterns includes many from the Thirty-six View collection and a number of other pieces he is known for including Dragon, Carp Leaping up a Cascade, The strong Oi Pouring Sake, and Portrait of a Woman holding a Fan.

This set contains 35 digital paintable patterns.

New Pattern Set for SegPlayPC Katsushika Hokusai recently released (see more details here)

Be an Artist in 2 minutes with Segmation SegPlay® PC (see more details here)

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A Closer Look at the Color Red

How do you feel when you gaze at a large red Rothko painting, spend time in a room with regal red wallpaper, or see a stop sign?  While the color red carries different meanings depending on its context, the body’s biological response is the same: red can raise both your pulse and your blood pressure.  Additionally, red can even make you feel hungry by increasing your body’s metabolism – which is why many restaurants use the color red in their logos and decor!

Red is the longest visible light wave, ranging from light pinks to deep crimsons that have a wavelength between 610 and 780 nm.  Our modern word “red” comes from the Old English word rēad.  This warm, eye-catching color has strong meanings that tap into the heart of various human emotions and experiences, depending on the specific context in which it is found.

For instance, in Western culture, red can signify anger and aggression (as in “blood red” or “a face that turns red with anger”), but it can also denote love, lust and passion (from red roses to the red-light district).  It also functions as a strong warning color that represents danger or emergencies.

On the other hand, the color red in China is related to happiness and good fortune.  In both China and India, red is the traditional color for wedding dresses.  In Africa however, red is associated with death and mourning.

Red is one of the earliest pigments used by our prehistoric ancestors, who made red ochre pigment from clay to paint the walls of caves.  Red pigments have been created from several surprising sources, such as crushed cochineal insects used to make carmine red.  Madder lake derives from the roots of the madder plant, while vermilion was made from powdered mineral cinnabar, which is a red mercury ore.  These days, most red artists’ pigments are created synthetically in factories, including hues such as poppy red, cadmium red, rose, alizarin crimson, and quinacridrone magenta.

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