Posts tagged ‘Art’

Remember art is subjective.

You need to get comfortable with people not liking or connecting with your work. It’s difficult I know, remember you ultimately do it for yourself. At least I do. You do it because it brings you joy to share something you are good at or at least want to be good at. There is something inside you that needs to be shared with the world. 

In an ideal world, everyone likes or appreciate what we do but the reverse is the reality. We need to be comfortable with this, it’s imperative. When we’re not, we alter our work for others appreciation or acknowledgment. I think this is dangerous having done it in the past. Eventually you look at your work and you just don’t like where it ended up. Trust me it’s a place you don’t want to be. In no man’s land, you’re not happy and neither is your audience. A better scenario, they are happy and you aren’t. 

Get comfortable with the fact that some people will not like your work, no matter how hard you try they just won’t. You just can’t please everyone and embarking on that journey is just futile. Focus more on your fans, they are the fuel you need to go further. I’d say that you should ignore the haters but I think they can also help. How? You may ask, well they can keep you grounded and can be a source of constructive criticisms which can also be helpful. You however want to avoid the toxic ones for obvious reasons. Hope this helps.

So what has been your experiences in the past with fans & haters, please comment below, like & share. 

What you don’t see.

People often forget that what they get to see is the final product. The pictures posted on my website or Instagram feed has been curated. It’s invariably the best of the best. So much has happened in the background that people are not aware off or ignore. There are images that won’t see the light of day, for whatever reason. It could be because it is a bad shot (yes that happens even to the best of us), it could be because it just doesn’t connect with the viewer; the image may just may not work for whatever reason and so on. Artists only let you see what they want you to see.

We’re not perfect, we don’t always get it right the first time round. Art invariably needs to be refined until the desired result is achieved or abandoned. Yes, it does happen. What is key however, is the never ending pursuit of good art.  For example, some studio sessions can last 30 mins depending on the concept, some longer. It depends on the model, the vibe in the studio, the team synergy and so on. 

Furthermore there are days nothing works, it does happens. The atmosphere during the shoot may not be right no matter how hard you try or the drawing just isn’t working and needs to be scrapped. Trust me there are days like that. But it’s ok, don’t think that every endeavour works as planned. The important thing is to keep working. 

Next time you appreciate art, take time to think deeply about it. What is the concept, colours, what do you think the artist is trying to say, how successful do you think the artist was able to achieve what he/she set out to do and so on. Two things happen, you start to appreciate the work put in from a different perspective and subconsciously you start to incorporate this critical thinking into your work, which always works for the better.

Do you think about art this way already? or is it a new concept to you? If not, are you going to try it out?

Please leave a comment below, like & share. 

Keep creating.

It’s one of the closing statements made by Umesh Dinda one of my favourite YouTube instructors. The statement is so apt. You create to put out your vision into the world. To satisfy a burning desire to give back, that which you love that brings you joy and hopefully others. 

You learn, you grow and become overall better.  There is always something to learn, there is always something to aspire to. So what happens when a goal is achieved? On to the next one, I’m afraid. You push your limits as far as you can and as you do, you get that addictive feeling of accomplishment. 

I find the joy is in the creative process more than the accomplishment itself. Achievements are very short lived. In so many instances the moment I’m almost done or nearing the end of a project, another one has invariably commenced, maybe mentally or in my sketchbook. It’s like reading a good book on amazon, the algorithm immediately recommends something similar for your next read or Netflix recommended another similar movie based on your previously watched movies or shows. 

As an artist keep creating. 

What are your thoughts? Can you relate? How do you start a new project?

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Art X Lagos 2019.

Art X Lagos is an annual West African Art Fair which held from the 1st to the 3rd of November 2019. It was held at the Balmoral Hall of the Federal Palace Hotel in Lagos Nigeria. It is the fourth of its kind. 

Below are some of my favourite art pieces from the exhibition. All images are credited to the relevant artists. For more information please visit their website at https://artxlagos.com/

Please like, comment  and share. 

People and their love.

People tend to take extra care doing what they love, it just shows. If you have two people on the same endeavour, with the same relative skills & experience, you can tell who loves it. It just comes through, it might not be immediately obvious but if you examine closely it shows. There is that extra labour of love in what we like. People that enjoy what they do tend to stick it out longer than those that don’t as well. So ask yourself? Do you really enjoy what you’re doing? If not, will you ever enjoy it?

It may be you don’t like the stage you’re in but the stage is required to get to your favourite part. So stick it out. If not, how fast can you can get out? If you can’t get out for the time being, what can you do to alleviate the situation? It is not all endeavours we dislike we can easily get out of, for example your day job. So what can you do to make it more interesting? It could be something as simple as listening to your favourite music while you work. We know that music can change ones mood. 

If for whatever reason it is hopeless can I recommend setting a part of your day to do what you love, it can be therapeutic in my opinion. It could be done after work. You could take up a personal project that you are passionate about. Overtime you’ll find out that you start to look forward to it and it invariably brightens your day. Thus having a positive impact on your mundane daily routine. So give it a try, what else is there to lose? Hope it helps.

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That is a really nice photograph.

“That’s a really nice photograph. You must have a great camera.”

⁃ A well-meaning friend

I love this quote, mainly because people ask this question all the time. Forgetting or not knowing that it’s really the ability to “see” that matters. This is what counts particularly in photography. What do you see ? What is the concept? What are the colours, is it a location shoot or studio shoot? How does the model come across in the image? 

It’s not just the camera, not by a long shot. The camera is just a tool at the end of the day. To help you achieve your artistic vision. Anyone can get a good camera but it takes years of practice & lots of experience to develop the skills you need to be good. It’s more important to spend time experimenting and learning what is relevant to your art than getting a new gear. At the end of the day you’ll just get the same results but at a higher expense. 

There is always something to learn and room to grow. This is a more valuable way to spend your time. I recommend you spend your money on relevant courses, on studying other artists than on new gear in this day and age where your gadget is outdated every 6 months. I mean we all know that artist who makes great art with the most mundane tools. It sure is the way to go. 

What is your take on this? Please like and comment below.

Price Less Art Exhibition

So over the weekend I attended Yusuf Durodola’s art exhibition titled “Price Less” at the Lagos Nike Art Gallery, a very prominent art gallery in Lagos Nigeria. If you happen to be in Lagos, Nigeria. I highly recommend that you visit the Nike Art Gallery. It is amazing, so for Yusuf Durodola to be exhibiting his art work you know he must be good.  In my previous blog post, which you can read here. I talked about the importance of visiting art museums especially for inspiration.

As expected, I got inspired on what to do for my next set of photo shoot and art work. Gosh, I love his use of colors in each of his paintings, he also has a thing for children, especially channeling their innocence in the way he captures them, as far as I can tell. Below are my some of my favourites from his art exhibition. If you want to know more about him you can take a look at his Instagram profile, which is @yusufdurodola.

They are all interconnected.

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Try not to work in isolation, I believe everything is interlinked when it comes to art. If you are a photographer or aspiring to be one, you have to study a lot of different subjects. Yes you need to understand your photography stuff like your gear and lights, and so on, but that is just the beginning of your journey. You then have to make what you are shooting interesting, it depends on you, it can be very simple it can be very dramatic. So what other things do you have to consider?

Ever wondered why you love some images and you just can’t tell exactly what it is about the photograph that makes the image tick? Yes it can be beautiful, yes the colors may pop, yes the location may or may not be exotic or grimy or grungy depending on the type of photograph. I believe it’s the subtle stuff that goes unnoticed that make the difference e.g. things like the model’s pose that you never actively noticed, give the image grace, make the image regal, movement, subtle facial expressions like squinting of the eyes, the time of day the shot was taken e.g. the golden hour and so on. Trust me as an artist/photographer you have to be aware of these subtle details, I don’t think you can ever actually master them, but noticing them is alone is the beginning of getting better in the long run.

So going forward learn as much as you can on an ongoing basis, be it posing, styling, makeup, be it communicating better with your subject during the shoot to get “that” expression. e.t.c learn as much as you can because for a fantastic shot all these things come together to make it what it is, so learn as much as you can to be able to tap into them and make your images stand out.

The Importance of Museums & Exhibitions

Gallery Image

Still on the topic of inspiration, I cannot stress enough the importance of visiting museums and galleries, especially art galleries. You can find links (October Rain 2017 and Art X Lagos) of the last two exhibitions I attended which may or may not be a source of inspiration. There is nothing as inspiring to an artist as seeing the work of others, galleries and exhibitions have an uncanny ability to bombard your sense of creativity that I feel you can’t get anywhere else.
If you can’t, for whatever reason physically visit a museum or attend relevant exhibition you can always do so online. I however I recommend you  get out of your comfort zone and physically go to one. I think there is a certain feeling you get when you attend galleries as opposed to just checking out art in the comfort of your chair or sofa. Such as interacting with others, speaking to the artists themselves who can actually give you insights into what was going on in their mind while creating that particular piece of art, and so on. You just can’t get that online, yes you can communicate via messages depending on the online exhibition, but I feel it is fairly limited.
So find out about upcoming exhibitions  and visit galleries in your area and whatever you do constantly bombard your senses with inspirational images/art/sculpture and so on to get your creative juices flowing.
Side note:
If you are ever in Lagos, Nigeria; I highly recommend you visit the Nike Art Gallery, you won’t regret you did. Their instagram handle is nikeartgallery. So check them out.
Below are  some of my favorite artists works on-line, check out their work. Spoiler alert, they are amazing.
Brooke Shaden –https://brookeshaden.com/
Stanley Lau (Artgerm)  – http://artgerm.com/
Justin Dingwall – http://www.justindingwall.com/
Aleksei Vinogradov – https://avvart.deviantart.com/
Sergey Muzlov – http://muzlov.com/
Now tell me after checking out out these artist that you are not inspired to create. So get out there, be inspired and go create!!
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Inspiration

You can get it from anywhere at any time. Try to keep a log, a note, a drawing, anything to help you remember for the future, especially when you are void of it. Like I mentioned in the past I use Evernote for so many things especially to help me remember things. I keep inspirational images for the future, be it something I clipped on-line that can inspire me to creating something new. I noticed that if you don’t keep a record you forget and invariably it is gone forever. So keep notes, keep images, keep ideas, keep concepts and you will have stock pile of inspirational stuff for when you lack any sense of creative ideas which you are guaranteed to get from time to time..
So what do I do when I lack inspiration? I keep busy? Huh you ask? Let me explain. You see by keeping busy it takes my mind to other things that are important say, improvements to my website, writing my blog, e.t.c. You see I noticed that when I keep busy I find that my subconscious mind goes to work for me, and at odd times I get something. If I don’t get anything from my subconscious mind, at least I have been productive in a different aspect. So either way I don’t lose. Try to keep, busy doing productive work and you never know what may come your way. What is however critical is you have a means of recording your ideas when you come across them, for if you don’t record it you lose it. Heck if you are driving find a safe place to park and record it. You’ll be glad you did.
Keep moving, persist, and never stay still. Who knows when you’ll get that million dollar idea, concept, or work that you’ll be proud of.

Below is one of my artistic portraits from a raw photograph I wasn’t a fan of.

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