Vector Portrait   Leave a comment

Here is the original photo, which I posterized in Photoshop before tracing with the pen tool:


Posted December 15, 2010 by danielleriley in VPA 380

Text Heavy Poster   Leave a comment

Posted December 8, 2010 by danielleriley in VPA 380

Rolling Hills   Leave a comment

Posted December 8, 2010 by danielleriley in VPA 380

Bottles   Leave a comment

Posted December 5, 2010 by danielleriley in VPA 380

Masking a Mask (or two)   Leave a comment

Posted December 1, 2010 by danielleriley in VPA 380

Art Event #4: A Century of Lithography   Leave a comment

November 28, Art Exhibit, San Diego Museum of Art

 After viewing the Toulouse-Lautrec exhibit, I went upstairs to Gallery 20 to see the “A Century of Lithography” exhibit.  I was really surprised at how small the collection was- maybe twenty pieces in total, most of them small works in black and white or grayscale.  I guess after the Toulouse exhibit I was expecting an equally grand showcase of lithography from other well-known artists, so I was a bit disappointed.  It’s a little hard to write a one-page report on something that was for the most part uninteresting.

 One of the pieces that drew my attention was “Angélique” by Albert Belleroche.  It looked more like a pencil sketch than a lithograph.  It had a really interesting composition- there was a lady in a bright dress in the foreground, with heavy shadows surrounding her.  The contrast of shadows and light helped accentuate her elegant figure.  Unfortunately I couldn’t find a picture of this piece online, so I only have my blurry camera photo to show as an example.

The other piece I was interested in was a large color poster depicting the four “quarter hours.”  There were four brightly colored nymph figures smiling in front of a large clock face.  I don’t remember the title, but it looked like a poster for a French play or show.  It definitely stood out from the rest of the exhibit because of its size and color.

 It was hard to learn anything from such a small collection of images.  I guess I could say I learned that lithography produces all shapes and sizes of works, both tiny sketch-like drawings and large multicolor posters.  It makes me want to learn more about this artistic process.  There was a bit of explanation of lithography in the Toulouse-Lautrec exhibit, but I still can’t wrap my head around the process.

 The main issue I had with this exhibit was the small collection of pieces.  If I didn’t know they were all lithographs, I would have seen twenty or so random images that didn’t seem to have a connection to each other.  Also, many of the pieces were just visually uninteresting- again, this could have been since I just came out of the Toulouse-Lautrec exhibit.

 This was a collection of works from several different artists, so I don’t think I was able to learn enough about the artists to develop an immense respect for them.  I’m sure they’re all talented people; otherwise they wouldn’t be in this museum’s collection.  I was most interested in the “Angélique” piece, so I am curious to learn more about the artist, Albert Belleroche.

Posted December 1, 2010 by danielleriley in VPA 380

Art Event #3: Toulouse-Lautrec’s Paris   Leave a comment

November 28, Art Exhibit, San Diego Museum of Art

 I think the most memorable part of the exhibit was the nostalgic feel.  There was a large map of Paris at the beginning of the exhibit, plus a few signs explaining the events that inspired Toulouse and his fellow Parisian artists in the late nineteenth century.  In each room of the gallery, there was a piece of decoration that subtly hinted at this glamorous setting- a thick red curtain for example, or a large glass chandelier.  I was fortunate enough to visit Paris six years ago on a school trip, and gazing at the maps of Paris in this exhibit brought back many memories.  I visited the Montmarte district and saw the Moulin Rouge in person, so this exhibit had a very personal connection for me.

 I think Toulouse’s simplistic use of lines in his works was very inspiring.  For example, in this poster of May Milton on the left, a woman’s white dress was given only a curving outline and a few long vertical lines within- it suggested a large, flowing gown without giving too much detail.  Without those lines, however, it would simply be a giant white blotch on the poster.

 I’ve always admired Toulouse’s work, especially his posters, but I had never realized these posters were made using lithography.  It made me appreciate his artwork even more, given the amount of time and effort invested to make the lithograph.  I also learned that lithography was used by the artist to fit the low-cost, high-volume production needs of his clients, such as magazines and advertisers.

 I think the exhibit was pretty good overall, but I would have liked to see more of Toulouse’s posters, specifically the ones for the Moulin Rouge, and less of the small sketches and doodles.  That’s just a personal preference- when I hear the name Toulouse Lautrec I automatically think of vividly colored can-can dancers depicted in mid-kick.

 I learned a few things about the process of lithography, such as the limited number of colors used.  Most of the posters in this exhibit were made using only three or four colors, while the more detailed ones used six to seven.  I thought that was just Toulouse’s style, but now I see the lithographs also forced such a limited color palette.

 As previously mentioned, I’m a big fan of Toulouse’s work.  I do feel respect for him outside of this exhibit.  Many artists don’t live long enough to see their works appreciated by the masses, but Toulouse gained success and fame in the art world after his first poster was published.  His use of line, shape and color, though a bit bizarre at times, are certainly still appreciated by the masses today.

Posted November 30, 2010 by danielleriley in VPA 380

Soybeans/Fruit Mesh   Leave a comment

Okay, so making realistic fruit isn’t my strong point.  I started with the soybeans- very cartoony and frustrating.   The cherries were a bit better.  Then the grapes came out a lot better, and I think adding a few stems in the background was a nice touch.  The blood orange is really vivid, but then again I was making it for the fruit crate poster (see previous blog) so I think it served its purpose.

Posted November 28, 2010 by danielleriley in VPA 380

Fruit Crate Label   Leave a comment

Original inspiration:

My artwork:

Posted November 24, 2010 by danielleriley in VPA 380

Art Events #2- El Dia de los Muertos   Leave a comment

November 1, Eloy Tarcisio, Installation/Group Participation

El Día de los Muertos is an event held at the California Center for the Arts in Escondido.  Artist Eloy Tarcisio creates a grid for guests to create altars for their departed loved ones.  There were also art projects for the children (like sugar skulls, yum) and live dance performances.

  I really liked the ambience of the event; it really fit the tone of how el Día is celebrated.  There was Latin music playing out of the speakers, but it wasn’t really loud mariachi music, it was more subdued.  On the other hand, it wasn’t a super-somber, funeral tone either; it was both casual and respectful.  I think that’s what the holiday is all about- paying respect to your loved ones and spending time to remember their presence in your life. 

  This turned out to have more of an emotional effect than I anticipated.  My dad attended the celebration with me, and together we made an altar for my grandma Bree.  I brought some flowers and my dad had some pictures of her printed out.  I was very young when my grandma died, but she was a great artist and her creative passion passed to my father and me.  It felt really good to celebrate her life and remember how much she meant to both of us.

  My artistic creativity is always pulled towards the “dark side,” so I really enjoyed the lighting effects, which placed skeleton silhouettes on the walls (I think they were using theatrical gobo’s).  It was very tasteful and light-hearted, not meant to be morbid.  I remember looking at those and thinking “I’d love to have some of those lights for Halloween.”

  The only complaint I had was the amount of space for the arts projects.  Many activities were crammed into a few rooms, and the narrow hallways made for a lot of crowding.  Also, there was limited seating for the dance performances, which made it very crowded with standing people and left no room for newcomers.

  When I first learned of this holiday a few years ago, it was a bit awkward to identify with because I thought it was a Mexican holiday, not something most Americans do.  But going to this event showed me the tremendous diversity of the holiday- it wasn’t just Mexican Americans who showed up, it was a couple hundred people from all backgrounds.  We were able to come together because death happens everywhere, therefore we all have family and friends whom we wish to celebrate.

  I respect Eloy Tarcisio’s goal in creating this exhibit.  His work brought people from all different backgrounds to this place under a common purpose: to celebrate their loved ones.  I appreciate his use of this cultural tradition to bring people together, and I definitely would like to return to this event next year.

Posted November 18, 2010 by danielleriley in VPA 380