why you should subscribe to my blog

As a way of an introduction, I want to lay out some expectations.  I am going to write every week – posting between Sunday evening and Monday morning (EST).  I am intending to share compelling content.  I am anticipating that you will like some of it enough often enough to come by semi-regularly and check-in with me with feedback so that I can improve.  As a regular reader, I am also planning on you sharing a post every now and then with your friends and family and co-workers.  I am also preparing to lean on the community that gets created around this blog to feed me and pay for my son to go to college through the sale of my art and the booking of private drawing lessons.  Does that sound fair?  Like a reasonable foundation for our phantom friendship?

Here is what you should look for.  I am organizing my weekly offerings around six themes all loosely related to the visual arts.  They are as follows:

  • How To Look at Famous Paintings / How to Impress Your Lover at the Museum
  • How Art Gets Made 
  • How I Learned to Animate 
  • How I Spent My Week 
  • How Much I Love This Sketch 
  • How the Eye Functions 

In “How to Look at Famous Paintings” or “How To Impress Your Lover at the Museum”, I will walk you through my own visual analysis of the treasures in the greatest cultures around the world.  We will look at Titian’s “Andromeda” in the Wallace Collection in London and deKooning’s “Woman II” at the MOMA in New York.  We will gaze together on Manet’s “Dejeuner Sur L’Herbe” in the Musee d’Orsay and Picasso’s “Guernica” in Barcelona.  We will examine the Louvre’s “Dying Slaves” of Michelangelo, the Uffizi’s “Sacrifice of Isaac” by Caravaggio and the Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum’s “Milk Maiden” by Vermeer.  But, we won’t just look at the Western canon.  We will explore Mughal miniatures, Easter Island statuary and Ming Dynasty calligraphy.  Also, since I am based out of the Raleigh-Durham area in North Carolina, there will be an emphasis on works found in the NCMA, Ackland and Nasher galleries.  For each, we will address the formal properties, technical advances and psychology of the artist.  Mostly, I will attempt to articulate why I love these masterworks, why they touch me deep at the core of my being and how they have shaped my life.  Hopefully, it will neither be too esoteric nor too sappy.  Hopefully, you will be able to travel to any major city or attend any clever cocktail party with a new nugget of knowledge or insight to raise your game in the eyes of others.  

In the two-pronged “How Art Gets Made,” I will introduce you to ancient and contemporary techniques for the production of art from intaglio etchings to site-specific multi-media installations.   This portion will give you behind-the-scenes access to the studios of living, practicing artists.  You will become conversant in all sorts of media: encaustic, oil, acrylic, silverpoint, etc.  On a divergent thread, I will also explore the labyrinthine world of the art market highlighting major art critics, curators, auction houses and gallerists each week.  Should you be interested in investing in art (not just buying it for your own enjoyment), this segment should give you some better handle on how to get more out than you put in. 

In “How I Learned to Animate,” I will journal quite simply about the ups-and-downs of becoming a 2D and 3D animator.  I will compare and evaluate different free apps and paid subscription services.  I will share-out any hacks that I uncover in the process.  If you are interested in starting to make your own animations, you might benefit tremendously.

In “How I Spent My Week” I will take you on-site with me to draw in the landscape or studio.  I will describe what attracted me to a particular site and what I saw and experienced while there.  Each of these entries will be accompanied by a “Homework Assignment.”  If you are wanting to learn how to draw, these activities are a pretty good place to start.  

In “How Much I Love This Sketch,” I will be sharing why I am drawn to a drawing of someone in the Raleigh-Durham area.  It could be on display at a local gallery.  It could be online somewhere.  I could have found it at the Flea Market at the North Carolina State Fairgrounds.  The point will be to increase appreciation for art and to be sure that you are in the “know” for local happenings in the visual arts.

Lastly, in “How the Eye Functions,” I will highlight recent, credible research in the field of optics.  I will mostly be interested in exploring how our notion of “vision” is changing.  You will learn about the anatomy of the human eye, advances in scopes for riflery and intergalactic exploration through enhanced telescopes. 

You should know that most of these blogs will find a corollary on Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, YouTube and Twitter.  Be sure to follow me there as well. 

Until we connect next week, delight in the world; exchange love with those around you; and, above all, awaken more and more to your own awesomeness.