Tag Archives: Artist

Weekly Art Challenge: TIGER

Hey Folks!

This week our theme is: TIGER!

 

A friendly reminder THIS is our last post for this webpage. Next challenge is a two week challenge and will be the first challenge posted on our new site The Art Challenge Blog! If you have been following here and wish to continue seeing what we create, please check out our new site and follow us there.

 

RJ: Tiger Eye, Pen on paper.

RJ’s piece gives me the chills. That deadly expression of the eye with the small visible detail of fur and stripes reminds me exactly why Tigers are dangerous wild predators. I def wouldn’t want to be cross this tiger’s path! I love the hint of facial detail, leaving the rest of the animal to the viewer imagination.

 
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AmberEntertainment, Pen and ink on paper.

For this week’s challenge I decided to create an image that illustrates my feelings about animals, like tigers, held captive in zoos and circuses. I love animals and I strongly believe that they don’t belong contained in zoos or used as entertainment in circuses. They belong in the wild and if not there then in sanctuaries where they can live their best life in peace.

 

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Next theme is a two week challenge – due to the holiday season – and the theme is:  DREAMS COME TRUE.


Weekly Art Challenge: BLUE!

Hey Folks!!

This week our theme was: BLUE!

Just a friendly reminder for our followers! Starting the first week of January, Our art challenge will move to a new site. You can click here and check it out!

 

Karri

This week my goal was to mix as many different blues as possible. I decided to choose Miro as my inspiration. I simply used a lot of his commonly used shapes and used all blue with a few red accents.

I had a friend once tell me that while visiting Barcelona she explored a Museum dedicated to the work of Miro and it was the happiest few hours of her life. Ever since when I see work by Miro, I always smile and feel that joy my friend had described. Looking at Karri’s Miro inspired piece in blue, I am reminded again of that joyous feeling. Great job, Karri!

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Dylan

“Thinking of the color blue, I think of my friend, Tori.  I want so badly to make this costume for her in the future. With her black hair and her pale northern skin, the color blue highlights her attributes in the most positive way.”

I can’t wait to see this costume come to life! Dylan’s eye for detail never ceases to amaze me. Her sketches are thoughtful and so full of creative passion. I think we all want to be Tori!

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Bethany

“I am a Doctor Who fan so when I thinking of blue I think of the Tardis.” 

What a fun piece! I am not personally knowledgeable of the Doctor Who series, but I love the movement of the blue and find myself wanting to know more about this Tardis. lol.

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Emily

“I’m really loving print making, probably spending too much time with just print making, but yeah. 🙂 Lino print over a background created by putting white spirit and printing ink onto a surface then placing the paper over the top”

I am fascinated with the background of Emily’s piece. The thin watery texture of the blue ink juxtapose against the solid black of lino cut beautifully illustrates the flowers – which reminds me of lotuses – shooting from within dark murky blue water.

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Ina

‘Blue reminds me of the sky, the water, my favourite colour. Half way through thinking of painting water, I wanted to paint a blue landscape and finally came upon a bunched up shiny satin fabric…. the result is an imaginary piece where you can see as many things. ”

Beautiful ethereal watercolor. Ina beautifully captured the watery affect of the satin fabric. The movement, the calming color and the serene quality gently pulls the viewers in and invites one to peacefully dream.

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Amberblueberries, Acrylic on paper.

As soon as the theme was chosen, blueberries immediately came to mind. The piece is not complete, but I think it turned out to be a good study for an idea I have for another piece. 🙂

 

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Next theme: TIGER


Weekly Art Challenge: TRANSFORMATION

Hey Folks!!

This week our theme is: TRANSFORMATION!

And a short note, we have started an new blog site specifically for the art challenge at https://theartchallengeblog.wordpress.com. Challenges will be posted starting the first week of January. Currently the new site is in progress, but if you are a fan of our Art Challenge please stop by the new blog and follow us there!

 

RJ – Cocoon, pencil on paper.

I love Rj’s pencil drawings. His eye for textural detail and ability to depict delicate moments always bring a smile to my face. The butterfly is in the process of emerging, its wings not yet ready to spread out and be fully reveled. The nibbled leaves behind the butterfly reminds the viewer of the caterpillar this new butterfly once was.

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Karri – Phoenix, watercolor on paper

“I will rise, out of these ashes, rise”. This weeks theme made me think about all the transformation we all make throughout life. Overcoming struggles. Changing our situation or habits. This brought to mind the image of a phoenix, rising from the ashes of an old life.

WOW, you can really feel the heat from the Karri’s Phoenix flames! The intensity of the oranges and reds is brilliant against the blue background and definitely reminds a viewer to push forward. I love this positive message to overcome and keep overcoming struggles.

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Bethany –  The DoodlePen and color pencil on paper.

“I started a doodle and it made a transformation into a whimsical peaceful place.”

I am loving Bethany’s creative process and how a simple little doodle transforms into a beautiful landscape. Her pieces depicts how an artist’s mind works and the choices we make along the way. The touch of color added in the end really makes the image glow. Beautiful!

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InaButterfly, Pencil and watercolor on paper.

 “My piece for TRANSFORMATION is a butterfly just coming out of it’s cocoon. As a new creature, it does not realize yet how it has morphed into something new and what beautiful new wings it has. The nature spots and colors are amazing once you start analyzing how they make a pattern up so close. “

The colors of this freshly emerging butterfly are gorgeous! Ina’s Butterfly is eager to spread her wings and as a viewer I am eager to see her fly! I love the details of the wings and the light washes of blue in the background juxtapose with the bolder application of color of the butterfly. Beautiful piece!!

 

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Emily

“The transformation of everything turning Christmas-y”

First we see the calm and clean left side of a residential street and then I find myself falling forward into the black christmas-y side of this piece, like alice in the rabbit hole. The holiday season does have this wonderland whirlwind intoxication feel about them. Emily accurately depict the sudden arrival of the festive decorations and lights.

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AmberCharge! – (incomplete) pen and ink on paper

My incomplete piece was inspired by the greek myth of Persephone  I wanted to illustrate the transformation of a space or environment when my nieces enter.

My twin nieces are depicted as the youthful force of spring, charging into a snowy landscape to liven up the dreary greys of winter. They are fearless, jovial and loving girls.
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Next theme: BLUE

 

 


Weekly Art Challenge: SPACE

Hey Folks!

This week our theme is: SPACE!

RJ –  Untitled,  graphite on paper

RJ was inspired to create a companion piece to mine (last piece, below) and I am so thrilled with it! There a ‘Alice and the rabbit hole’ charm about it, and I’m a little bit envious of the figure and what he is seeing beyond the space we the viewers stand.
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Dylan – Untitled, graphite on paper.

 “This is an experiment in playing with foreground, middleground, and background. Details get hazier and edges get softer as objects recede into space.”

What a Beautiful experiment! I am completely enthralled by the expression of this beautiful and noble creature, she looks so proud and confident as she gazes outward toward the viewer. Dylan’s line work perfectly captures the strength and elegance of her subjects.

 

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KarriSpace,

Space: the final frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise. Its five-year mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no man has gone before.”

 “This has been going through my head all week as I pondered what to do for this weeks challenge. While pondering this weeks theme I thought a lot about how small we are in this universe. How unfortunate it is that we are tied down by gravity and can not go and explore the stars.”

Karri’s dreamy representation of space is the kind of image that would inspire anyone with a youthful heart to wish they were an astronaut! Karri has such a beautiful relationship with color, her layering of bold and subtle colors is suggestive of the magnitude of our galaxy and reminds me how complex and spectacular the universe is.

 

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Emily – Untitled, drawings on paper

“I was in Amsterdam this week and then in London for the weekend! For me the theme space was about how I usually draw the things in the space around me to practice my drawings, so i’ve attached some quick drawings from my personal sketchbook that are from spaces I was in in Amsterdam” 

Emily’s statement reminds me a lot of a Buddhist teaching about being present in the moment. I see that with her images, the awareness of the moment and the details of the space that she is occupying. I am loving the red ink drawing below. Its a simple ink drawing of a window and lanterns and I find it comforting. I find myself waiting for a friendly face to look out the window and notice me.

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Val Moonlight – photograph

“I took this in our sideyard and I thought the moon was pretty”

Val was inspired by the moon seen from our backyard and the space between it and herself. Her photo suggests a longing to connect with the moon, a longing that reaches back generations. Taking the photo in a familiar space invokes the emotional attachment we have with the moon.

 

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Amber – Stretching the Void, pen and ink on paper.

This piece went through a lot of transformation between the various thumbnail sketches and mental pictures to the final image. I started with an idea that I would fill a page with odd shaped bubbles, each containing a person struggling to stretch the bubble out. Then the image was a single odd shaped bubble with a single person and this bubble was submerged in rubble full of modern distractions and materialism. Eventually, while sketching the final piece, I realized that the image needed to be only this one person struggling to maintain her small space within a void.

It felt emotionally accurate to see this sole person fighting for space within space. The nothingness around her is both open and claustrophobic.

 

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Next week’s theme: GRATITUDE

To our readers and followers, We hope that everyone has a joyful, safe and abundantly happy Thanksgiving with family, friends and the folks that love you the most. Even if you are not in the States celebrating this holiday, we still wish you a wonderful and thoughtful day.

Peace,

The Art Challenge crew.


Weekly Art Challenge: VAN GOGH

Hey Folks!

This week our theme is VAN GOGH! Van Gogh is famous worldwide for his expressive paintings and tragic life. He is a universal favorite for art lovers.

 

DylanThe Ear Selfie, Special effects and instagram

I love this! If Van Gogh was around today, I imagine his famous post ear-cutting self portrait would have look something like this! Only Dylan could make you envious of her mangled ear and blood splattered throat selfie!

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Karri – Sunflowers, acrylic on canvas

 “Van Gogh’s Sunflowers have always captured my attention. I love that he painted them to decorate a room for his friend Gauguin. The sunflowers in Provence must be stunning. Wish sunflowers around here were just as plentiful.”

Van Gogh’s Sunflowers are beautiful and one of his most iconic pieces! I love Karri’s loose painterly brushstrokes and soft color palette, she did a beautiful job capturing the spirit of Van Gogh and charm of sunflowers. I don’t think there is a person who can look at a a sunflower and not feel a little bit happier.  🙂

 

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Bethany

“My rough interpretation of Van Gogh’s Skull with Burning Cigarette. Only I gave him a sweet tea with lemon and a little umbrella, which oddly looks like a flower.”  

If I were a skull, I’d prefer the sweet tea over the cigarette too! I love the personal and cultural (nothing beats Southern sweet tea!) twist to one of Van Gogh’s early and probably lesser known works, but what I like most is that Bethany decided to tackle the skeleton. Most people prefer to avoid drawing skeletons, they can be intimidating subjects. Bethany went for it  and with beautiful contour lines. Great job Bethany!

 

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Emily – Quotes, monotype prints on paper.

“Here are my Van Gogh entries, my first layer of printing went well, then the yellow didn’t! Then I just ran with it anyway creating some strange messy pieces mixed with Van Gogh quotes, not technically amazing pieces but I kinda like the messiness!”

The prints are messy and I like that about them too! The messiness, in my opinion, gives off an energy similar to that of Van Gogh’s thick, bold and animated strokes. The composition, color choices and quotes remind me of street art. I can visualize these pieces becoming wheatpastes around a city. As a humorous thought, the blue piece looks like the sunflowers are growing out if Van Gogh’s head. Its as if his thoughts/dreams can no longer be contained within his head and are now becoming hair!

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AmberDandelions, Acrylic washes and graphite on paper

I loved Van Gogh’s artwork as a kid. He was the first artist that I learned about in grade school and was able to recognize when shown his artwork; this was a major thrill and feeling of accomplishment for a seven year old me.

For this week’s challenge I wanted to create a piece that was inspired by one of my favorite Van Gogh paintings, Sunflowers. Karri and I must be kindred Van Gogh spirits!

I painted dandelions (surprise!) in a teacup. Dandelions being my equivalent to his sunflowers and of course the teacup instead of a vase made obvious sense for me. Instead of painting with his preferred thick brushstrokes I chose to work in the muted washes that I lean toward. This piece felt like a collaboration between me and an artist that I greatly admire.

 

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Next week’s theme: SPACE


Weekly Art Challenge: OCEAN

Hey Folks!!

This (two) week’s challenge was to create works of art inspired by the theme: OCEAN.

Tony Ocean Bubbles, color pencil on paper.

“I got the idea of a floating ocean when RJ and I went to see Pan at the cinema. In the movie, Neverland is surrounded by a floating ocean with marine animals in the bubbles. And I loved the idea, so here’s my Ocean!”

I love the concept of an entire ecosystem floating inside a bubble! It reminds me of those beautiful and artsy glass marbles with swirls of chaotic colors contained within. My favorite detail of Tony’s piece is the whale’s fin skimming the edge of his eco-bubble. For me it signifies that the marine animals might be contained to their individual bubbles, but they are still free and wild creatures.

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Emily – Untitled – Mix Media (Markers, pencil and Lace) on paper

 “I was feeling a bit halloween-y so I did a Siren character that has ditched her wings and gone mermaid, holding a skull?” 

I love the bits of lace, they are a nice subtle texture to the image and references the the wings the siren ditched, beautifully! Looking at the piece, I am reminded of a few literary images. The Sirens reference Greek mythology. Her stitched transformation into a mermaid brings to mind Frankenstein melding with The Little Mermaid. AND, the skull in the hand is a perfect scene to break out some Shakespeare!

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Bethany – Love Story, mix media on paper

“The titled of this piece is “Love story” because my seven year old wrote love above her head and story upside down on her chest. He is very helpful. Most bodies of water freak me out, the unknown lurking underneath, but I enjoy them from the beach and I love to watch sail boats. This summer, my little family and I got to spend a week down in Florida. We long to return, and from the amount of sand still in the carpet of my Nissan, it seems as though we brought it back with us.” 

Bethany’s piece has this strong meditative daydreaming vibe that I can’t get enough of! I want to be this woman with the sea foam green hair and serene expression as she mentally and emotionally returns to a recent happy and peaceful moment. The soft colors only enhance the peaceful calmness of the figure!

Great job on your first Art Challenge piece, Bethany!

 

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AmberThe Voyage, mix media (tea, acrylic, watercolor, graphite and color pencil) on paper

This week, I chose to remake a piece that I had made a few weeks ago for a different challenge (Unconventional) in a medium that is more natural for me. I enjoy experimenting with new material, such as duct tape; but it is mixing drawing materials on paper that I swoon for.

The ocean is mysterious and vast. Its serene movements and calming blues beckon to our adventurous side and we can’t help but eagerly answer the call. The Voyage is about setting off for the unknown, taking chances and seeing where the tide takes you.

 

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Next week’s theme: DETERMINED


Weekly Art Challenge: DISTANCE

Hey Folks!!

This week our theme is: DISTANCE

RJ – Three Bridges, Photograph

RJ’s photograph reminds me that distance is quiet and sometimes peaceful, like a day in the park; and gives us the space needed to see the full picture. The three bridges along the canal are spaced apart and each with their own story, yet they are connected by the flowing water of the canal and together they form the fuller picture seen from a distance.

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Karri – Heart, Collage on Paper

“This week I used pieces of torn maps of all the places my loved ones are, spanning 4 states. Though it might seem like a great distance, they all seem to fit nicely on this piece of paper.”

I love the puzzle aspect of the torn map pieces “fitting nicely” together, despite the distance between the people represented by each piece. The people that love you will always love you no matter where you are on the map.

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Emily – Distance Makes the Heart Grow Fonder, mix media

“Heres my entry for this week. My partner recently left for university, so yeah that’s what this is about “
Emily’s piece reflects the distance of the heart and it pulls the viewer into feeling that distance with her. I like the transparency of the faces over the map. Seeing the lines and shapes beneath facial expressions further suggests that distance is more than space between two points, but also an emotion.
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Amber – Wanderlust, instagram photograph

This was a somewhat difficult challenge for me. I had too many ideas shifting around inside my head. The concept of distance is both spatial and emotional for me, and the two are tightly connected in various ways.

When I was seven my mother allowed a rainbow “priest” named Blue to bless me. His blessing (or prediction, depending on how you look at it) was that I would forever wander, that I would find plenty and nothing at all – or something along those lines. He also gave me a piece of glass made from lightening striking the ground and told me I would eventually lose it, I did.

I travel a lot, both for work and for pleasure. The happiest years of my life are those with distance covered, the most depressing years are those that were stagnant. The people I love the most in the world are scattered all over it, I am never near enough of them. But, I can’t stop moving about because that is when I will feel the distance from everyone and emotionally shut down.

This is a theme that I plan to return to and fully explore in the future, but for now I present a photograph of an antique toy car, an old map of Denver, postcard of Wyoming and a tiny teacup – representing me – to represent the time, emotion and spatial aspects of distance in a way that is connected to me.

 

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Next challenge is a two week challenge and the theme is: OCEAN!

Thanks for stopping by!


WeeklyArt Challenge: PRETENDERS

Hey folks!

This week our theme is: Pretenders

 

RJ: I’m a Fish, graphite on paper.

RJ’s piece cracks me up! I love the sly stubborn expression of the monkey as he determined to convince you, the viewer, that he is something other than a monkey. It leaves one to wonder, Why does he want to be a fish?

 

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Karri: Daniel, the great pretender – photograph

“This week I spent a lot of time with my 7 year old nephew, Daniel. He has such a huge imagination. Playtime consists of sitting at his Lego table. There are much more than just Legos there. He can sit for hours and play with the dinosaurs and the Lego men and the army men pretending that they are real. Just one Lego piece can be a person. He is the ultimate Pretender.”

 

Karri’s piece reminds me of a well known Picasso quote:

“All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up”.

Children have the most vivid imaginations. They see worlds within worlds and artists have spent centuries repeatedly trying to capture that innocence and spark that so rarely exists in adulthood. Looking at the photo, I am curious to know the story that young Daniel drew from collection of toys.

 

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Amber: Untitled (for now), pen, ink and graphite on paper.

I struggled with the challenge this week. At first I was stuck on an idea that was good in theory and in my head it looked great, but the image would not manifest itself on paper. I was beyond frustrated!

After some complaining to RJ and several wasted art days, I started fresh with a new inspiration. The inspiration for this week’s piece came from a favorite and influential childhood book, The Velveteen Rabbit. As a highly imaginative child, I had come to believe that my stuff animals were in fact actually alive. In my mind they would have thoughts, dreams and individual personalities. I believed they loved me as much as I loved them. The Velveteen Rabbit, only confirmed the accuracy of the beliefs of my seven year old self.

This incomplete piece expresses that wish and belief that the games are not only pretend, that the toy is in fact as real as the child (or perhaps the toy itself) wants to believe. I mixed toy rabbits with the real to blur the line of reality and pretend. I also added the dandelions to emphasize the power of a wish.

 

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Next Week’s theme: DEGAS


Weekly Art Challenge: FEATHERS

Hey Folks!!

This week our theme was FEATHERS!

RJ: Chopstick Feather, found object.

RJ would laugh and tell you how he just did something spur of the moment so he would have something for this week’s challenge, But what RJ won’t take credit for is the creativity that one needs to think about transforming what most would see as an insignificant piece of trash – chopstick wrappers – into a piece of art.

There is the clear environment aspect of this image. The recycling of materials, the affect that our everyday trash has on the environment and our neighboring species and then there is the ephemeral aspect of the piece itself. This is a photograph documenting something that no longer exists – much like the mid century Art Happenings – and it eerily feels like a documentation of a now extinct species. A reminder that existence is ephemeral.

 

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Karri: White Pigeon, Watercolor on paper.

“The most amazing thing happened this weekend. A beautiful white pigeon showed up at my house. Turns out it was very tame. We feed it and gave it water. It hung around all day. One of its favorite places to be seemed to be on top of my head.”

What an exciting experience and beautiful image! I love the transparent softness of Karri’s watercolors, they inspire the viewer  to want to reach out and embrace the pigeon, and be apart of this moment.  Karri’s use of  color emphasize the gentle innocence of the moment and the childlike glee of being chosen by the pigeon. Beautifully done!

 

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EmilyFeathers, pen and ink on paper

 “I tried to capture the delicacy of a feather by using dots”

I think the dots were a smart choice and that Emily did a fantastic job capturing the delicacy of a feather. The black and white image has an ephemeral softness to it, like any moment the wind will come and the little dots will scatter across the page. The more colorful feather, while still retaining the essence of a soft texture, express a vibrant charge of energy, like a dramatic movement is about to occur. Beautiful!

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Amber: The Unconfined, Pen and ink with graphite on paper.

For me the most obvious association with feathers is freedom. 

Originally I had in mind an image of a sleek cat staring nonchalantly outward at the viewer while standing within a pile of loose feathers. Somehow the image evolved from a confident predator capturing his prey to the prey confidently expressing their freedom from control and fear of the cat and cage. I had thought about including a reference to the Greek myth about Icarus by including a version of him inside the cage; but, shortly after I started the basic sketch of the image, I felt that an empty cage worked better with the idea. I chose Canaries because they are a common bird found in cages and I had recently read that they are symbolic of freedom, which seems rather ironic.

 

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Next week’s theme: PRETENDERS

 


Weekly Art Challenge: FEAR

Hey Folks!!

This week our theme was FEAR!

Dylan: The Unfamiliar, photo

“Dry heaving, cold sweats, tunnel vision to my worst nightmares, and sheer panic are what I experience when I am forced to be in unfamiliar dark place. I have had this phobia since childhood and it has not lessened in value with age.”

Dylan’s statement gave me chills and reminds me why I, an adult,  still can’t sleep with limbs hanging over the edge of the bed, exposed to what lies beneath. I find myself trying to make out what exactly it is I see waiting sinisterly behind the ajar door.

 

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Karri: The Web, Graphite on paper

“Spiders are a very common phobia, but the spiders don’t bother me nearly as much as their webs. I hate walking through a spider web. that said, I can’t ignore the beauty in watching one being created. The deliberate dance around the delicate strands. Why does this carnivorous architect have to spend such an annoying trap. Doesn’t he understand that it’s the last thing I want on my wall or on my face!”

I love that Karri drew the web without the spider, to further reinforce that her sole issue is with the web itself. I can’t blame her, webbing in the face is creepy and never a welcomed feeling, no matter how beautiful they are. The graphite lends well to the nearly invisible and delicate quality of a spider’s web.

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Emily: No Fear, photo mix media collage.

“I accidentally managed to get a piece of art work in for this week. I’ve recently started an art foundation course, which is a scary thing for me. I had a piece of work from a dark room workshop that I wanted to experiment with, and I thought the woman in it looked really fierce and bold, and the words that came to me were NO FEAR. For me fear has ruled my life for far too long, trying to have no fear is currently where my head is at”

I admire that Emily used the theme not to express a fear, but instead show fear no mercy. I love her choice of colors juxtaposed with the dark blacks and greys of the photo. The effect gives this strong woman an eerie supernatural strength.

 

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Valarie – Fear, Pen, Pencil and watercolor on paper –

“ I create Fear from Inside Out because he is always afraid of everything”

Val did a great job drawing Fear. I liked that she gave him an ambiguous surrounding. The cloudy blackness reinforces who fear was and how fear can make you feel small and isolated. Great job Val!

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Amber: The Dinner Party, unfinished sketch on paper –

I know my fear – cannibals – is irrational, I joke about it all the time; but it is still one of my most common nightmares and a major reason why I avoid places like Florida. I don’t recall being squeamish in my youth; and I theorize that my vegetable based diet has made me more sensitive over the years to gore and violence of becoming dinner. Ironically I love (some) zombie movies/shows because they are the only thing that actually scares me, but still have to tightly close my eyes and cover my ears during the scary parts, even if I have seen that episode of The Walking Dead 10 times..

The piece is obviously unfinished and I was going to be complete it in the pen and ink style of my more recent pieces. So far I am happy with the sketch, but unsure of what I should do with the back wall.

 

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Thanks for stopping by!

Next challenge: FEATHERS