Sunday, June 30, 2019

Vincent Van Gogh, the Tragic Story of a Brilliant Painter

Twelve years after his tragic suicide, Vincent's work was discovered by a Parisian art dealer. Until then, no one, except for those who knew him personally, had ever even heard the name. Today, large sums of money are exchanged for his work.

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Vincent was born in the Dutch village of Zundert, in the south of the Netherlands. He studied theology and became a preacher in the Methodist Church. He also worked for several different art dealers in The Hague, London and Paris. Only in 1880 does he start painting, first traditional and very "Dutch", reflecting the Dutch rainy climate with many dark brown colors.

In 1886 Vincent moves to Paris, and two years later to Arles, on the Mediterranean, near Marseille. On the 20th of October of that year, Vincent's friend Gauguin joins him in Arles. Vincent's art becomes lighter in color, showing the Mediterranean sunlight in it.

Two months after Gauguin comes to Arles, Vincent has a schizophrenic episode and cuts a piece of his own ear off. The years following, Vincent starts to get very sick, and he eventually kills himself in 1890. His brother, Theo van Gogh, who had supported Vincent all of his life, dies seven months after Vincent, possibly from grief.

Van Gogh never sold a painting in his life. Today, his paintings are the most expensively sold in the world, and are admired around the globe in many museums and private collections. He also is celebrated as the forerunner of the expressionist movement.

Written by Duco Sminia

Featured artist: Vincent van Gogh [].

Research done by Irene Sminia.

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Friday, June 28, 2019

10 tips for painting with acrylic paint.

Acrylic paints are water based and toxic free. The manufacturers have many premixed colors or you can choose to mix your own. These liquids are available in spray containers, tubes, and different sizes of bottles.
Brushes and a variety of objects may be used to apply these paints to any surface. But, as with any product you can achieve better quality, longevity, and refinement by preparing surfaces before paint application, adding fixing agents for thickening or texture, and applying protective agents after the project is completed.

Tip #1 Will this project be an indoor or outdoor product? Acrylics are water based and the surface needs to be protected from moisture, heat, mold and mildew. Select surfaces and acrylics supplies designed for either environment. Do research and ask the art clerks to learn which products to use on wood, glass, clay, paper, textiles, metal, and concrete or stone.

Tip #2 Plan your work and work your plan. Knowledge is key. Know exactly what you are creating. Select the correct tools. Determine which products will satisfy the desired outcome. Know how to safeguard or preserve the finished masterpiece. Avoid making mistakes by making a list or constructive notes before starting.

Tip #3 Consider the size of the project. As a beginning painter or craftsman start with small projects. You may not like the larger project and getting rid of it may be a problem. Starting small or making a sample can be considered a draft or a practice project before constructing a large project.

Tip #4 Familiarize your self with acrylic paints and know how to apply them. Ink Acrylics have a fluid consistency and can be applied with an ink pen or brush on any surface which requires a drawing, finite painting, or projects such as rubber stamping. Soft Body Acrylics are thicker than ink but lighter than the heavy body acrylics. This paint may be used on any art or craft project. Thick Body Acrylics have the consistency of oil paint and will create the textured appearance associated with oils. Student Grade: This is recommended for beginning artists as they will produce many paintings in order to learn and refine their skills and techniques. This paint may be thinned to create water-color effects or layered many times to have the thick texture of oil. Professional Grade: Designed for the experienced artist and is more expensive. The higher the pigment content the more expensive the tint becomes.

Tip #5 Use different types of acrylics. fixing agents, and techniques to prepare surfaces, create assorted textures, or to finish the painted surface. Gesso, sealers, paint, additives, fixing agents, finishing sprays, and varnish may be used to prepare or finish the surface or the painting of any arts and crafts creation. There are also products which will help to prevent or retard mold or mildew damage.

Tip #6 Experiment with different painting themes or crafts. Try a variety of acrylic brushes and tools. Learn to mix your own tints as this will broaden your rainbow of colors. Make a sample card of all tints with portions to keep a permanent record. Experimentation will help to improve your skills and lead you to your specialty niche.

Tip #7 Attend classes, workshop, or watch videos to learn new techniques which others offer. Try to learn and practice at least one technique each week. Keep your knowledge of acrylics and their techniques updated. Attend arts and crafts shows to view the various colors, themes, mediums, and techniques which other acrylic artists and craftsmen use.

Tip #8 Copyright your arts and crafts projects. Photograph and/or write down every paint, technique, brush or tool that was used to support your arts or crafts project. This information will be valuable should you need to duplicate original works or start mass production.

Tip #9 When experimenting or practicing, buy cheaper products. Overall this is a money-saving tip but more importantly you will learn using actual hands on experience. Your creation will be the results of using one type of acrylics or a mix of several types.

Tip #10 These paints in any form are easy to work with and produce excellent results. Relax and enjoy the journey of painting. Technology has made the process of mixing and application on any surface that the amateur or professional artists and craftsmen can enjoy and love what they do.

Read more about Acrylic Arts and Crafts Paints at

Do you enjoy a variety of hobbies? Visit for more leisure or professional hobbies and interests.

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Thursday, June 27, 2019

Have you ever done this on an artist canvas before?

Super Size custom canvas manufactured by

Here is a super large, as well as super sturdy canvas mount we customized for a very talented artist - This stunning work of art is a mixture of concrete, oils and resins....

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Is Art Necessary? By Vijaya Koteeswaran

I am an artist at heart and an accountant by profession. I make paper collage paintings and also enjoy painting with acrylic on canvas. I particularly like learning new techniques and styles of painting.
However for some time now I have been plagued by the question "Is art necessary?'' I have felt perhaps I ought to put my time to better use. Do something really productive and worthwhile. Do something that would improve the world, something really useful and perhaps to make a difference. And also find my purpose. Yes the perennial question - is this all there is? Suddenly making art started to feel like a kind of selfish indulgence. Like I should have utilised my time to do something more important. So I started to think if any art was necessary at all.
Every single day I read the morning paper. I read to keep myself informed of the news. The news is of crimes committed. Of horrible crimes against women and little children. Of the destruction wrought by natural calamities. Of people suffering from lack of water or too much of it. Of the air being polluted and of climate change. Of plastic destroying marine life while uncaring governments ruin the environment. Of the corrupt politicians destroying the social fabric for personal gain. Off Ill-informed people running the economy to the ground. Wrong people at the helm of affairs suppressing and destroying the good. Makes me wonder if anything will ever help stop the rot. Hardly gives me any reason to smile at all. Save for the little cartoon on the back page, Calvin and Hobbes.
So while I have largely felt like Nero fiddling when Rome was burning, I suddenly caught myself on the last line there. The little cartoon Calvin and Hobbes seemed to be the only thing relieving me from the relentless depression of the morning paper. The little stuffed tiger and the very cute expressions. The cleverly drawn cartoon with barely 3 or 4 panels conveying an idea usually a witty one. Drawing the reader into the life of a little kid sometimes making the reader wonder where the story goes next. I am always compelled to read this cartoon. Even on mornings when I am running late I have a quick look at the cartoon. On holidays I take the time to sit and marvel at the talent of the cartoonist. How the stuffed tiger looks so alive in one panel and like a toy in the next. Thank you Bill Watterson.
So what is this cartoon if not art I asked myself? It provides me a momentary respite from the depressing news and tediousness of the daily newspaper. In a way it enriches me by giving me a glimpse of something fantastic. So isn't this all that art is meant to do?
In a world plagued with sadness perhaps art is like the clouds parting and letting in a ray of sunshine. Is that not important? There will always be death and destruction and blood and tears. There will always be bad news and people in need of help. But then art must exist too. Art provides a kind of relief to the dreariness of one's life. Perhaps this could be also why they made so much art in the past centuries when daily life was a grind and there was so much sickness and suffering from plagues and wars. And today when we look art works from the past we are uplifted and filled with a sense of awe, of the greatness of their vision, of the enormity of their talent and of the permanence of their works.
This is why art is necessary. Though not all art can be compared to the great masters, in its own way every artwork speaks to someone. It does provide that glimmer of light in a cloudy day. It elevates the soul of its maker and makes the viewer consider if only for a moment a glimpse into a different world. And if it is really good art, it makes the viewer pause and perhaps smile or be awed.
So art is necessary. All art is necessary. I arrived at the conclusion that it was important for me to continue to make art for myself and for the benefit of others.
The next question I am considering now is how much time should I spend on my art. Perhaps I shall refer again to a quote by little Calvin, "God put me on this earth to accomplish a certain number of things. Right now I am so far behind that I will never die."
Visit Vijaya's Art of Paper Collage at

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Dip Technique with Acrylic Pour

Easy Abstract Landscape Painting Demo / For Beginners / Using Fan brush/...