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Artistic Evolution

Back in August when I went to Santa Fe, New Mexico on my Artist Retreat, I spent a wonderful afternoon with Nancy Reyner (www.nancyreyner.com) and wrote about it my September blog.    https://www.rshah-studio.com/even-artists-need-a-retreat/   Nancy is one of my favorite and admired artists – it was her YouTube video that taught me how to apply gold leaf (or any leaf) to a substrate (a summary term for the various surfaces artist paint on, such as canvas, wood panel, etc.).   Long story short – Nancy is one of the most knowledgeable experts I have found regarding the use of acrylic painting.  Her instructional videos (available online and easy to follow for any painter, even if you are a beginner) really inspired me...

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Liquid Glass

As promised, (a little later than I intended) the second blog about my wonderful art retreat to Santa Fe, New Mexico this past August.   I spent an afternoon at the Liquid Light Glass Factory in Santa Fe.  https://www.liquidlightglass.com   I have always watched in amazement as artisans make beautiful vases, plates and decor out of glass.  Watching them blow the glass bulb through the tube and then shaping it with tools is fascinating - especially when they add the colored glass.  I can spend hours on YouTube watching glass blowing craft.  It looks so easy and they shape the glass as if it's putty.   There were a couple different workshops I could choose from.  Both were at least a couple hours; but one seemed...

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Even Artists Need a Retreat!

About a month ago I took a trip – solo – to Santa Fe, New Mexico.   It was “me-time”.  I decided to plan this trip as an “Artist’s Retreat”.  I spent 6 whole days in the Santa Fe, New Mexico area.  I packed my drawing and painting tools, including paper and a portable easel; and I packed my camera.  When I travel, I like to photograph landscapes and/or subject matter that inspires me to paint later.   My days were spent in creative pursuits, including a glass factory, a tour of the galleries at Canyon Road, exploration of Taos, NM, a 1,000 year old Pueblo and all the sights in between Taos and Santa Fe – taking the high road through the mountains...

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Water

Connections between water and life are absolute. Water destructs, energizes, and heals; transforming all life and spirit. My newest collection is themed “Water”. Since I was a young girl, I remember submersing myself in the town’s municipal swimming pool and feeling a sense of comfort as the water cocooned around me. Muffling or silencing all sound, dunking myself underwater offered an immediate transitory escape from the hustle and bustle of the crowded pool In Japan, water is considered a vital part of daily reflection, every park has a stream, pond and/or waterfalls to offer a visual and auditory sense of calm. Onsens are used for healing after strenuous exercise or a long day/week. They are also venues for social gathering amongst friends...

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Reflections from the first 6 months of 2018

The beginning of this 2018 - I was excited and exhilerated.  I had 3 shows scheduled.  In February at the India Art Festival and two shows in May, the first at Kitano Alley Gallery of Kobe; and the 2nd at the Intercontinental Hotel in Osaka. The India Art Festival was a reaffirming show for me.  I sold three pieces and met so many wonderful people.  I also met some wonderfully talented artists that I loved conversing with about experiences and paintings.  Walking around the booths, I myself - became very inspired as I observed the lines drawn, media used and colors on canvas. At the India Art Festival I met this wonderful woman who had also lived in Japan and took Sumi-E classes from...

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Metallics & Me…

Being of Indian descent, I grew up in a culture that celebrates the brightness of color.  Gold and Silver, in jewelry or any other form, is considered an investment.   "Jewel tones" which allow for reflective qualities in fabric and paintings, have always excited me.  But, it is the underlying use of reflective metallic color that has always attracted me.  The use of gold, silver and other precious metals in threads to adorn a border, a sari or interweaved into an outfit give it an ethereal quality.  The use of precious metals to outline precious and semi-precious stones within intricate designs are truly works of art as the contrast of color between the stones and the stone and the metal...

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The Art of the Japanese Brush

Art has so many different forms across the world.  Major types of mediums familiar to Western cultures, include oil, pastels, watercolor, acrylic and graphite (drawing).  In Japan, one of the most popular and historical mediums is known as ink brush painting. Referred by many as "ink and wash" painting, it is an East Asian art originating in China.  Commonly known as Sumi-E in Japan (in Japanese it is suiboku-ga), it is typically a wash with only black ink.  Black ink is combined with water at varying levels to produce different shades of grey.  Similar ink/brush painting is applied to the art of Calligraphy.  But, for the purposes of this post - I am only going to focus on Sumi-E.The Chinese name...

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The Element of the Artiste!

Recently, I have also had the fortune of meeting two artists whose works have given me much to ponder as I approach my own work.  Their use of metallics (albeit for different reasons) is refreshing and exciting.Aude de Saint-Exupery http://www.audedesaintexupery.com likes to work with a metallic palette as it reminds her of the sun and heat.  Her work is inspired by her travels and living in Africa, the Pacific Islands and in Asia.  She uses metallics to highlight a landscape and/or call attention to detail.   Another artist, Gwen Anderson, www.gwenchi.com incorporates silver leaf or aluminum leaf into her collections, which I find to be haunting and intricate.  Gwen's work is influenced by her experiences as a child, surviving a shipwreck along with her sister...

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The Sumi-E Influence

I have been studying the Japanese brush painting art of Sumi-E for the past 2 years with 3rd and 4th generation Japanese Sumi-E artists, Shoko and Seiko Ohta - a mother/daughter team. http://www.toriizakaart.com/Artists/ShokoandSuikoOhta/Available-Shoko-and-Suiko-Ohta/.  While Sumi-E is typically a black/white based art, the use of the brush to illustrate color is fascinating.  What I love most is the use of gold and silver metallics in the colored paintings.  I love way the gold and silver reflect light and highlight the paintings in a delicate, yet very bold manner.  I am finding ways to incorporate this with oil and having great fun! ...

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The Masters as Sources of Inspiration

  Throughout history, there are many such examples. http://flavorwire.com/293497/10-famous-artworks-inspired-by-other-famous-artworks/10 To talk of a few in the contemporary art world include Andy Warhol's The Last Supper inspired by Leonardo Da Vinci's The Last Supper. Liechtenstein's 1992 painting Bedroom at Arles is a version of Van Gogh's original from 1888. Whether as parody or tribute, many artists have found inspiration in works that have come from others.  Even the "Masters" as evidenced by Claude Monet's Le dejeuner Sur l'herbe inspired by Edouard Manet's Le de-jeuner sur l'herbs. There is a sculpture by Tobias Stengel called Die Woge located in Dresden which commemorates the flooding of the Elbe River in 2002 that is taken from a wood block print by Katsukisha Hokusai called The Great Wave off Kanagawa. And so it goes...

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