Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Out Of The Box

     I thought this week I might try something a bit different.  I want to introduce you to some of my favorite artists; what I like about their work and how I try to incorporate what they are accomplishing into my work.
      The first artist that I think we can all grab some inspiration from is Jon David Kassan.  I will skip the bio information, because my intention is for you to spend this time studying this young artist’s work.  His website is DavidKassan.com and I would ask that you spend some time reviewing both his drawings, as well as his paintings.
     Please don’t think that since Kassan doesn’t do watercolors, we have nothing to glean.  I have watched his drawing demo video on YouTube, titled “Salmagundi Club Drawing Video”, many times.  This is a most informative 7 minute 55 second video.  Notice how the drawing moves through a measuring with straight lines, to a block-in with a separation of shadow side and lit side, to establishing dark darks, turning of form and finally, highlights with chalk.  This is traditional drawing at its very best. 
     Kassan says on his website, “I am interested in the concept of a painting’s technical and transformative powers”.  If you watch this Salmagundi demonstration, you will be witness to his statement.
Kassan uses the Brushes app
on the iPad to create this piece
     Another video I beg you to watch is his demonstration on the Apple iPad.  Kassan is not only a technical genius with brush or pencil, but he understands self-marketing maybe better than any artist I’ve come across.  The video titled “Finger painting on the Apple iPad” is a mesmerizing feat on two fronts.  First, is his absolute complete and total mastery of his drawing craft with any medium, including a new electronic one.  Second, you will notice at the end of the 7:51 demo, that there is a tag line that says, “streamed live from Brooklyn, New York.”  This may be why this video has captured well over 1,000,000 hits.  Apple would be wise to use this demo in their advertising.
     We must make the effort to learn from “out of the box” thinkers like Kassan.  He has much to teach us if we are willing to take it all in.
     He also reiterates what I mentioned last week in my post “Time Stealers”.  Kassan says, “Time is the most valuable thing we have; the one aspect of daily life that we cannot get back once it’s gone.”
      He’s absolutely right.  You’re an artist and time to create is limited.  Get busy and learn from everyone you can.  Start here with David Kassan. 

Images © Jon David Kassan.  Content © Mark Kohler.

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