Archive for the ‘Fine art’ Category

Gallery fundraiser for Yonaka!

October 1st, 2009 by Reinder

My friend and sometime collaborator Yonaka Yamako has her eye on a property near her home in Fort Valley, Georgia to turn into a studio gallery in which she can show her own work and that of other artists to the public and hopefully help breathe some life back into the town. To raise the $ 20,000 she needs, she is (among other things) selling her artworks and craft items, including prints, original pencil art, felt dolls, hand-carved crochet hooks and other carved items, textiles and jewelry (no category listing but this is an example. Yonaka's hooks are particularly highly prized and she has hooks in museums and collections around the world.
Prices aren't listed with the art at the links above, but she does tell me that she's planning to sell out her inventory for this, so whatever is not sold is for sale. She needs to get the money together in the next few weeks, and while she's been planning for the event for some time (see this post on DeviantArt), she's been taken by surprise by this opportunity so she's in a bit of a rush. She tells me she is also open to commissions, within reason, and as someone who has some of her work in his own art collection I can tell you her art is well worth paying for (see Krakatoa with riding crop, Ottar and Norla in my fan art section, though I have more.)

If you are in the market for some art in any of the categories above, or would like to commission some art for your wall or for publication in one form or another, please take some time to check out Yonaka's work at She's got some beautiful stuff in there that you'll just want to have.

Two art blogs I like, plus two webcomics to check out

June 27th, 2009 by Reinder

Mythwood - The Art of Larry MacDougal and A Vintage Sky are both sketchblogs showing lots of fantasy art in neat storybook illustration style. I find them very inspirational.

Meanwhile, in her blog, Aggie linked to two comics that I need to check out: The Epic of Cuchulainn and Lovecraft is missing. I'll get around to reading'em one of these days - both are still new enough not to have inconveniently large archives.

Caption Contest 3

May 15th, 2009 by Adam Cuerden

I hope noone minds these: They're a bit of a chance for me to show off my art collection, as well as (hopefully) good fun.

As always, click on the "Caption Contest" link if you can't see the file. By the way, the winners will be announced by an extremely partial judge - me, Adam Cuerden - about one week after the image is posted.

I don't know how long this series will run. I have LOTS of 19th-century art, so, really, it depends on when it stops being fun.

Caption Contest 2

May 14th, 2009 by Adam Cuerden

Without wanting to say too much, would you believe the person on the left is King Richard the Lionheart?

Also, if viewing this under the comic, you may need to click on the "Comic Caption 2" link in order to see the image. Blame Reinder's WordPress setup; I'm sure it seemed a good idea at the time =P

Caption Contest

May 11th, 2009 by Adam Cuerden

Louis Huard - The Punishment of Loki

Put your captions in the comments! (Note that you may not be able to see the image if you're on the RoCR mainpage - just click the "Caption Contest" link to come to the main blog and you'll see it.)

The Turniproots, by Aggie Janicot

April 16th, 2009 by Reinder
Old Mother Turniproot and Morgan Turniproot, drawn by Aggie

Old Mother Turniproot and Morgan Turniproot, drawn by Aggie. Click for full view

Aggie sent me these sketches of the Rogues of Clwyd-Rhan characters Old Mother Turniproot and Morgan, Old Mother's great-great-granddaughter. She told me she'd looked at the old woman and thought through how her face might work in real life - the way the shape of the skull changes with age and how not having teeth affects the overall look of the face. Me, I just drew a stereotypical Very Old Person—as I will probably never draw her as she was in her younger years, all I needed was a basic awareness of what supercentenarians typically look like, and even that could be heavily cartoonised.

I'm every bit as impressed with her interpretation of Morgan: that right there looks like a real person! Aggie actually had a hand in her initial design: I was going to make her look like her sister Marion, but she suggested a body type for her that I rarely use: tall and willowy, with a small chest and narrow hips. It worked.

Must-see medieval art exhibit at the Frist in Nashville

March 27th, 2009 by Reinder

If you live within driving distance of Nashville, Tennessee and are interested in medieval art, crafts, culture or manuscripts or early Christian history, you can't afford to miss Medieval Treasures from te Cleveland Museum of art at the Frist Center for the Visual Arts, running until June 7, 2009. Seeing the illuminations, sculpture, jewelry, calligraphy and paintings in the exhibit has been a perspective-changer for me as all of it showed a level of craftsmanship and especially individuality that I hadn't previously been aware of as far as medieval art is concerned.

Medieval culture and art are not taught well in schools - in mine the entire period and the entire continent to which the term applied were treated as an amorphous, unchanging, uninteresting blob. I'm not sure how it could have been done better though - most historians who teach at secondary school level simply don't have the expertise and haven't been taught it themselves. Add to that the fact that medieval art doesn't reproduce well (in fact, I've bought the catalogue and have been looking at it and it just doesn't come near capturing the brilliance of it all - gold colours wash out in manuscripts but are overemphasized in some pictures of some of the sculptures, detail is blurred and fine lines in miniatures get lost in the printing process) and it becomes very difficult to communicate to people who haven't seen it in real life, just how brilliant it is. But it is brilliant, and you should see it if you can.

As I sit here, Aggie is reading the catalog and correcting mistakes in it. She's an absolute sucker for stuff like this. Update: She just ruined half the catalogue for me by pointing out that many of the shadows on the photos of the sculpture have been photoshopped on, and some of them qualify as Photoshop disasters. That book is only good to be a souvenir of the exhibit, and it's too expensive for that.

(Meanwhile, here's what all else we've done on our vacation. On the day I arrived, Aggie's dog was killed in an accident, which put a damper on our reunion. Also, Aggie's youngest son was sick with Fifth Disease, so we took it easy for a few days for his sake and didn't go on any outings. On Tuesday, I crashed with the fatigue of three difficult months at work, and on Wednesday, we bought baby chicks for the minifarm, and I crashed again, sleeping away the whole afternoon. Oh, and we shopped for engagement rings - a lot. We eventually got what we wanted, but it'll need some work done and I won't see the finished product until after I return to the Netherlands. Aggie will send me pictures of it and I told her I'll photoshop a presentation box around it and present that to her while I propose to her. Having told you people that, I may even follow through on it and do just that)

Tiny Art Director

February 23rd, 2009 by Reinder

Jeroen J. pointed me to this: Tiny Art Director, in which artist Bill Zeman shows off some of his work that was commissioned, and then critiqued in no uncertain terms, by his daughter, who was three at the time he started the blog. Responses range from "I like this" and a job status of Accepted to

Upon seeing the preliminary sketch, the art director, in a rather unprofessional outburst, collapsed on the floor sobbing and screaming.

Now if only more art critics did that, we'd have much better contemporary art in this world.

[Einar] Noah’s Ark

December 14th, 2008 by Adam Cuerden
Gustave Doré - The Deluge

Gustave Doré - The Deluge

A few days ago I found a copy of the Doré Bible at a just-about-affordable price, and snapped it up.

The Doré Bible is an 1866 publication of the Bible with illustrations by Gustave Doré, usually considered one of the master engravers alongside Dürer and Hogarth.  It's a very interesting glimpse at what the Victorians took out of the Bible, compared to us.

Take the image to the right. This is one of Gustave Doré's two illustrations for the story of Noah's Ark, both of which emphasise the death and destruction of the "sinners" that were left behind. (Click on it for a link to Wikipedia, where I uploaded a 600dpi scan)

It's really quite shocking to modern eyes - a story now considered a Children's story  was, in the eyes of Doré and his very popular edition of the Bible, one of horror, of parents trying desprately and futilely to save their children, of beasts trying to get their cubs to safety.

Indeed, Doré seems to actively shun the "obvious" choices. There is no illustration of Jesus in the manger: The Christmas story is instead illustrated solely by an image of the Wise Men and the Flight to Egypt. We don't get the Garden of Eden or the Creation, but do see Cain and Abel's sacrifices.

Oh, and the Apocrypha, not even published in most modern bibles, is lavishly illustrated.

Doré's Bible is a strange to modern eyes, with the illustrations emphasising the death and horror far more than any modern preacher or edition ever would, but do not sensationalise it - instead merely presenting it as what happened.

Frankly, one has to believe that the Victorians truly believed in the Bible far more than any modern Christian - for what Modern Christian really thinks about what the stories mean for those God vanquished? - but, at the same time, did not have the same belief in God's Love. When you look at Doré's illustrations of Noah's Ark, the story changes from a silly Children's story to a tale about the horror of those God set out to kill. It's hard to see that God as one that loves humans.

Hyperinflation I

September 25th, 2008 by Reinder

Hyperinflation I, nude woman with wheelbarrow full of money

Drawing that just popped up in my head the other day, after talking to Aggie about the economic crisis. Of course, after the drawing pops up in one's head, one has to do the hard work of drawing it - including research for things like wheelbarrows full of money.

When I googled for "Wheelbarrow full of money", I noticed something interesting. I expected to get only images of the German hyperinflation of 1923, but instead got a whole bunch of stock photos and illustrations showing succesful, wealthy, smiling people pushing wheelbarrows full of cash. I guess because the US has never experienced hyperinflation (yet), they associate wheelbarrows full of cash with wealth rather than with the collapse of a financial system resulting in poverty for large sections of the population. I have never personally experienced hyperinflation (yet) but to me as a somewhat historically educated European, the image of a wheelbarrow full of cash is not a happy one. Thinking about this has made me want to do more art relating to money, the lack or oversupply of it, and the different cultural assumptions and constructs surrounding it. There'll be more nekkid people in it, either to sugarcoat the theme, or because they've just lost their shirts.

Update: This drawing is now for sale through my Comicspace galleries. You will need to sign up with Comicspace to be able to see it (to certify that you are old enough to look at nipples) but the process is easy and does not result in you getting spammed. If you don't want to buy it that way, though, you can also e-mail me and buy from me directly. Price is set at $100 - not exactly a bucketload of money.

I have also made it available as a Print via DeviantArt, in a range of formats and at the default prices. There, too, you'll have to sign up to view and order.