Sunday, July 25, 2010

A Visit to the Art Museum

When the temperature starts hitting 104*F (40*C) regularly here in Virginia- with a heat index of 108*F (42.4*C) -110*F (43.3*C), it is NOT the time to be going out and about.  So we stayed in town, and ran errands.
However, today, being the day we normally like to do a little gardening, we instead went to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA).  The museum had recently undergone a year long renovation, and had a brand new (and huge) wing added to it.  Not all of the new exhibition space is open, there are two opening later in the year, but there was more than enough time to spend a few hours in there, with children in tow, admiring the exhibits.
As an amateur artist, I of course have my favourites.
For instance, there was the painting by Artemisia Gentileschi- "Venus and Cupid".

You should click on the link for a better view...
The vividness of the blue- the beauty of her technique and the fact that Artemisia was the very first woman admitted to the "Accademia di Arte del Disegno" in Florence, Italy.  Wow!
Then there was the impressionist exhibit- with my favourite painters- Monet, Renoir and Van Gogh- although they had only a few pieces by these great names!
Or the modern exhibits with works by Picasso, Matisse and Warhol... I admit, I was a little star struck :)

But the thing that blew my mind, was the sculptures by DEGAS.  I was surprised, to say the least.  I have been familiar with the paintings by Degas, of his dancers- but had no idea he was a sculptor as well.  The museum said that people had claimed his sculpture of  La Petite Danseuse de Quatorze Ans (The Little Dancer, Age Fourteen), was UGLY.  Well I didn't think so...

There are several castings of this sculpture- in museums all over the world!
There are several of his horses there too, and apparently some of the original artist's carvings (I was rushed through the exhibit before I got a chance to really see it all!!)

If you click on the photo, you can go and examine it in more detail :)
It was a delightful trip though, nice air conditioning, relaxing art works- what more could you ask for? :)

Well... I did wish there was a little more in the way of mediaeval stuff.  And I really wished they had a textiles exhibit- they were missing out on lace in particular- there is a lot of art involved in lace design, and it was very much part of the commercial aspects of life for centuries!

I mean- isn't this artistic too?  I'll just have to look elsewhere for the lace then...

In the meantime, if you are in Richmond, VA, take a look at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts- it really does have a great collection :)

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Some Knitting...

Like most artists, I don't restrict myself to one medium :)
So feeling inspired recently, I decided to do some knitting and crocheting...

 I can't even remember when I made these bootees :)  I just love to add a splash of colour to the white though- which makes them suitable for both boys and girls ;)

 This is some Irish Crochet.  It was a baby bonnet pattern- but my thread and hook were too large.  I sized everything down and started over later- perhaps I'll be able to post the finished product later :)

These are pacifier/dummy holders.  A clip behind the decoration at the end holds them onto the baby's clothes :)  The skull is for my nephew...
Oh and these are my OWN designs, so please, do not copy them!  They are copyrighted to me :).

But, I mustn't forget some art that I made (but forgot to upload)!

 My knife :)  Yes, this is for the secret project ;)

 Actually these are all for the secret project!  My rolling pin- this was kind of fun to paint because it has such rich reds and browns!

You can see what this one is ;)

Then there is this picture.  I hate it!  In fact, this and the other picture I did of Anita have bugged me for days.  The other one wouldn't scan, but- well I just don't like this one at all.

Oh well!  Maybe it just means I need new pencils ;)

And you may notice a new look to the blog.  I have tried to tie all of my blogs together- giving a more seamless appearance :)  So the headers match, and each blog is linked near the top of the page in the tabs...  I am still working on that some, but hopefully it'll all work out fine!

And yes, the artwork in the title IS new, it IS a rose and no it is NOT the real Jacobite Rose.  That one does not make a very good logo unfortunately- too busy!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Friday Fireworks

It's the 4th July weekend here in the states, so lots of things to do and see!  It started yesterday with a concert and fireworks display- I of course took my sketchbook with me :)  Since my theme this month is to do 'portraits and people' I concentrated on the people!

Kathleen (Busy♥K♥York)

Kathleen (Busy♥K♥York)
Originally uploaded by Spinneretta

One for JKPP... this time I have made my picture in coloured pencil.
You can see Kathleen's thread here: Kathleen

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Wally Torta

Wally Torta
Originally uploaded by Spinneretta

A new month, and a new project. This month I am planning to practise some portraits- I could do with the observational practise ;) Hopefully I'll be accepted into Julia Kay's Portrait Party so I can join in the fun there- but I am not restricting myself to that :) This will be a month of playing with different media in which to draw people- whether sketches from out and about or actual portraits :)
While I wait, I'll draw what I can find ;)
This is Wally Torta, one of the artists in the JKPP
(see his thread here: Wally Torta)