Tuesday, May 31, 2011

In the Zone: The Renaissance, May 30, 2011

Our show about the Renaissance was so much fun to prepare for.  I had a great time rereading about it, listening to the music of the time, and trying out some of the art techniques I learned about. 


Mystic Marriage of St. Catherine Alexandria, 1379, Giovanni del Biondo (egg tempera painting)

I shared about how the Renaissance saw a move from the use of egg tempera paints by nearly all artists through the Middle Ages (and in fact dates back to Ancient Egypt) to widespread use of oil paints.  Egg temperas were created by mixing egg yolk with coloured pigment powders (ground with mortar and pestle) to form a smooth creamy paste.  Limitations of egg tempera included the fact that the paint dried very quickly.  So, artists had to work quickly in small areas at a time.  They couldn’t mix up large batches because it would dry out or spoil before it could be used and this would prove expensive for them.  By making small batches of paint, if the artist didn’t create enough, they might run out and then have the added task of attempting to match colours.  In addition, because of the texture of the paint and the nature of its quick drying characteristic, egg temperas were difficult to blend.  The only way to do this was to paint on one colour, allow it to dry, and then paint a layer of another colour over it so that the translucent layers would seemingly blend together to form a new shade.  The difficulty in blending, shading and creating texture with these paints made it hard to create paintings that were realistic.


Game Stall at Market, around 1625, from the studio of Frans Snyders, oil painting

Oil paints were first used around the 12th century in northern Europe but it didn’t reach widespread use until after its potential had been truly explored by 15th century painters in the Netherlands.  Oil paints are much more flexible than egg temperas as they can be applied in very thin layers and for fine detail as well as in thicker layers to add texture.  The colours that could be achieved were much stronger and more brilliant.  The paint dries much more slowly than egg temperas do, allowing artists to mix up larger batches with plenty of time to use them up.  They can be blended and used for both shading and texture, allowing the artist to achieve realistic results in their paintings.  During the Middle Ages, the primary subjects for artwork were topics of a religious nature.  In these, the artists weren’t striving for realism but rather attempting to convey the essence of the subject symbolically.  As the Renaissance movement began to grow, more and more artists started seeking to depict realism in their work, drawing from scenes around them and using live models for their paintings.  Oil paints were much more suited to this purpose than egg temperas and the translucent nature provided by the oil in them allowed for rich vibrant colours. 

Want to make your own egg temperas and try them out for yourself?  Want some hints on painting with oils?  Check out the recording of our show and you’ll find lots more information and ideas there! http://www.linqto.com/PlaybackRoom.aspx?roomname=creativeedventures&name=SingleExplicit_2011_05_30_20_00_44_826

Monday, May 30, 2011

Top 20 Interesting Things about Leonardo Da Vinci

as determined by Cyn Gagen

20) Leonardo liked to wear pink to make his complexion look fresh.

19) He was a rebel. He didn't care for the way that art was taught in art schools and workshops, preferring instead going outside to actually observe nature and the world and drawing from that observation.

18) As well as being an artist, he worked as a military engineer.

17) He was considered a highly moral upstanding man. He was very religious as is reflected in many of his paintings.


16) He drew up the plans for the very first armoured car. He also invented the parachute, bicycle, and scissors among other things.

15) He was a vegetarian on humanitarian grounds (highly unusual in his time).

14) Leonardo snuck into graveyards at night to dig up bodies so that he could dissect them and study their anatomy for his art. He was also trying to locate the human soul within the body. To his credit, he did create the first realistic accurate drawings of human anatomy.

13) He liked to purchase caged birds so that he could set them free.


12) We have something in common. He was both a procrastinator and a perfectionist. He even destroyed many of his own paintings that were not turning out the way he wanted. This may be part of the explanation for having left fewer than 30 paintings behind.

11) It took him about 10 years just to paint the Mona Lisa's lips.

10) We think of Leonardo as a prolific painter, but really he left behind less than 30 paintings, some of which are unfinished.

9) No pieces of sculpture can be found that are attributed to da Vinci despite the fact that as an art apprentice to Verrocchio we know he did study sculpture. Most likely reason for this is that his work was unsigned.


8) Da Vinci and Michelangelo were not very fond of each other.

7) He never married nor did he ever have any children.

6) People often comment about his sketchbooks, saying they are messy because they are so jam-packed with sketches. This was because the good quality paper he used for his sketches was extremely expensive so he used up every square inch of it.

5) Leonardo was one of the first artists in Italy to use oil paints instead of egg temperas. I'll be talking about this in more depth on tonight's In the Zone with Roberta Birnbaum (Robi Cohen) and myself.


4) Da Vinci loved to experiment. He was always trying out new techniques and making new mixtures and materials. He came up with his own recipes for oil paints and when creating The Last Supper, he made up his own fresco technique using oil paints applied to a mixture of gesso, pitch, and mastic, instead of the usual technique of watercolours applied to wet plaster. Unfortunately, this experiment didn't fare too well as the Last Supper painting began to deteriorate very quickly, almost right from the time it was created.

3) He used mirror writing - right to left and backwards - in his notes to make them harder for others to read.

2) He was left-handed and dyslexic.

1) He was born out of wedlock. Had this not been the case, he may never have become an artist. Due to his station in life, art apprenticeship was one of the few professions open to him, whereas otherwise, he would have had a great many occupations available to pursue. What a loss it would have been if he had followed a different path!

Check out tonight’s In the Zone with Roberta Birnbaum and me to learn more about Da Vinci and the Renaissance! http://linqto.com/rooms/creativeedventures 9 pm Eastern

Sunday, May 29, 2011

The Renaissance

By Cyn Gagen



I’m super excited for tomorrow night’s In the Zone hosted by Roberta Birnbaum and me! We’ve switched from themes based on top music hits to getting inspired by periods in art history. This week: The Renaissance.



I’ve been perusing my art books and the internet to look over artists and works from the period. I also checked out Youtube for some music of the time to put me in the mood. It’s been a lovely weekend of exploration – reminding myself of the elements of that time and some of my favourite artists.


Leonardo da Vinci

I think I have something really interesting and a bit different to present to you tomorrow night, 9 pm Eastern. http://linqto.com/rooms/creativeedventures Just click on that link and you’ll be taken to the chatroom where we will be presenting the show LIVE. You don’t need a webcam of your own – just a computer with internet access. You can just sit back and watch or you can join in the text chat by typing in the chatroom. If you DO have a webcam and have something you’ve made that you’d like to share with us, we’d love to see it! Hope you can join us!

Free Images for Cards, Blogs, Scrapbooking

By Robi Cohen
Who doesn't like FREE?   I'll be making images available for free on a regular basis on my blog: decorablesart.com.  I have been accumulating quite a collection, and hopefully there will be something in it for YOU.  From blog banners to digital images; from original art to vintage clips...
Today's images are easy to download and you can do it right from......

Friday, May 27, 2011

He’s a Travellin’ Man

By Cyn Gagen


Hello from our Creative EdVentures mascot! He’s been hanging around here with me for a while but has been bitten by the wanderlust bug and now he’s ready to head off on the road. I’m hoping to find some friendly hosts who would be willing to put him up for a few days as he embarks on his adventure. And while he’s visiting you, do you suppose maybe you could add to his possessions in some way? Embellish his clothing, make him some shoes, put something in his backpack – you are limited only by your imagination!

If you’re interested in participating, send an email to creativeedventures@gmail.com and provide me with your name and mailing address. I’ll give people until June 15th to sign up and then he will be sent along his merry way. Once you receive him, it’s your responsibility to add something to him and then mail him along to the next person. I’ll reply to you by email giving you any further details that you may need.

Oh and I’m taking suggestions for a name for him. Can’t get him a passport without one, you know!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

ROBI@NITE May 26, 2011 - What's planned for tonight?

It's Thursday AGAIN???

Another incredibly busy (good busy) week.

At 11:30 pm EST I will be on the Creative EdVentures Network  for my weekly online web show, "robi@nite".   I am hoping you will join me.... to view full article click HERE

Combining lots of fun techniques; stamping, inking, Cuttlebug, embossing...........

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Join Cynthia Gagen and Roberta Birnbaum as they travel through Art History. 
The theme for May 30th is *The Renaissance*!
Each week they will pick an era, or period, or movement in Art and share their thought processes and interpretations for that given period. Painting?Sculpture? Music?Architecture?
What is your favourite era of Art?
See you Monday nights at 9 pm EST.

By Robi Cohen
Tonight on In the Zone (9 pm EST every Monday) our theme was Ticket to Ride. I chose to make a Passport Holder (to hold my passport AND ticket to ride)!
Duct tape sure has come a long way!

Inside the passport holder. 3 pockets.

The following items were used to make this project:
Cardboard for base
Fancy duct tape - tie dye and tulip patterns
Aleene's Tacky Glue Stick
Stamp motif gift wrap paper
Foreign currency coins
PdQ chip shapes Love Bug
Index cards for pockets
Maps from Car Map books

..........To read the entire article, please click on this link:)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

In the Zone, May 23, 2011: Ticket to Ride

by Cyn Gagen

I was AWOL for most of last night’s In the Zone.  Yes, I know – I’m one of the hosts.  But at the last minute, I had technical issues (my internet is being difficult) and couldn’t actually go on cam.  By the time I had tried EVERYTHING, the show was half over.  Sigh.  I did happen to see the fabulous Roberta Birnbaum completing a most amazing passport holder.  If you missed it, you should check out the playback link here:  http://www.linqto.com/PlaybackRoom.aspx?roomname=creativeedventures&name=SingleExplicit_2011_05_23_20_01_04_301


Had I been able to take part and share my demo, you would have seen me making a paper bag journal/album.  You see, reflecting on this theme, I started thinking about what I do about being creative while on a trip.  A few years ago I was spending quite a bit of time on the road and I wanted to be able to bring some art supplies with me without having to carry too much.  I also like to have keepsakes from my trips – scrapbooks, journals, and so on in which to put the photos that I take and the memorabilia (postcards, maps, tickets, and so on) that I pick up along the way.


The great thing about this little mini album is that it’s made from paper lunch bags which are flat and easy to pack, and it is quite quick and easy to put together.  In many cases, I don’t even need to take any bags with me as often I can just buy them at a dollar store in the area when I get there.


Because of the way it’s constructed, there are little pockets created by the openings in the bags in which I can stash some of the souvenirs I find along the way.  I like to wait until I get to my destination before assembling the album as then I can add in things like pieces of maps, brochures, and postcards right into the structure of the book as additional pages. 


In this album I used only 3 paper bags to create it but you can certainly add more if you need a larger album.  Or, along with adding pages such as those described above, you can also use scrap cardboard that you find along the way (maybe the packaging from a souvenir you purchased?), some pieces cut out of the hotel stationery from your vacation accommodations, articles from the local newspaper (if you glue a couple pieces together back to back it will make it sturdier), and more.  Sometimes when you buy little items like postcards, they give them to you in a small paper bag anyway – add that to your album too!

With this idea, all I have to take with me besides the bags is a pair of scissors (I take the small folding Fiskars ones – GREAT quality for the folding type!), a glue stick (I prefer the Aleene’s Tacky Glue Stick), either a small hole punch or my preference, a “pokey stabby tool” because it’s smaller and retracts safely for travel (like Tim Holtz’s Craft Pick by Tonic), and a bit of string for binding the book.  Of course there are many other fun things you might want to include in your travel art kit but I’ll get into those in another post when I share some more tips with you.  AND a full tutorial on how to make these albums is coming! Stay tuned!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Introducing SassyLassy !

By Robi Cohen
I have not blogged in about a week, and considering I was blogging almost daily, that was an odd thing for me to experience.
I have been UBER busy --- but all in a VERY good way!
For now I would like to share with you the first of a line of canvas-art-with-an-edge (CAE) creations:
 This was SO much fun.
I have to first thank Emily Block, of Stamping Bella for giving me the canvas to work with; Thank you Emilybella!

Ingredients used:
Cindy Coleman Interiors paints in Cobalt, Mint,Peach, and Bisque
Tattered Angels Glimmer Mist Lemon Zest
Dollarama Metal scrapbooking embellishments
copper wire
FIMO Classic  clay 
Magnet word sayings
Dollarama 3D plastic embellishments
Inkssentials Glossy Accents
grunge board
Ranger Tim  Holtz Adirondack Alcohol Inks in Lettuce, Cranberry,Sunshine Yellow, Copper Mixative
Paper Towel
Medical Gauze

 I hope you will join me in following the Adventures of SassyLassy.  So, If you made a SassyLassy, what would YOUR SassyLassy have to say???

Well, I have to fly because I have more posts to make and a demo to prep for the May 23rd episode of In the Zone (9 pm EST ) at http://linqto.com/rooms/creativeedventures !

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

How to Tick off your friends on a Blog

By Robi Cohen

Fonts can be Dangerous!

I have upset my friends.  Why? Because I completely messed up our 'joint' blog, Creative EdVentures, with my font.  
Fonts can be DANGEROUS people!!!

A while ago, tired and bored with the very limited choices of fonts in Blogger, I decided to get an app which would convert my blog into any font I desired.  This was wonderful! 
First problem; depending on which computer I was using, and which Windows platform I was using, I did or did NOT see my new font.  I wasn't even aware that it was actually working until I went to a friends house and she pointed out something in my blog and I said, "Hey! It DOES show up!".. I had just assumed, for whatever twisted reason, that it just wasn't WYSIWYG on MY computer only.

This is also why, quite often, when you use a certain website it will say 'compatible with IE' , or for 'optimal viewing only use Vista and IE'... stuff like that.

All was good in the world, and I posted along most merrily in my Papyrus font, until one day....

...the skies darkened and a booming voice came from the heavens.. ( ok, it was Fab... but still) and this voice said, "Robi (imagine a French-Canadian/Italian/British God-like voice), what the (deleted by the sensors) have you done to our blog? It is completely messed up and you are to blame!!!"  -- at which point he took a sip of tea and called for Vince to please let him have a Krispy Kreme donut.  
Shocked, and for fear of being struck by lightening, I realized that, 'yes, I was to blame'.

I have 'imported' or syndicated my posts to many other sources before, including Wordpress, and NEVER did my HTML code completely supercede the existing code on the target source!  Papyrus took over the blog! 
It was awful. There was so much carnage!

The moral of this story - yes, there really is something of importance here -- 
When you have a blog there is a certain amount of 'maintenance' you must do on a regular basis.
View your blog from as many browsers and platforms as possible.
See how quickly/slowly your page loads
If you have an RSS feed, you must somewhat regularly check the 'destination points' for what is actually being shared.  Sometimes your post is not relevant/appropriate for a specific audience and should be removed from there.

Rememeber people -- do as I SAY, not as I do/did/done.
I have learned a valuable lesson.

Mea culpa BIG TIME!!

Go Helvetica!!!!

Heart of Glass: In the Zone May 9, 2011

By Cyn Gagen

Last night on In the Zone with Roberta Birnbaum and me, our theme was the number one Billboard hit for this week in 1979, Heart of Glass by Blondie.  As always, it was fun to see the different ways in which Roberta and I interpreted the theme.  She even found an actual heart of glass!!! I simply went with the “glass” part of the theme and worked with some inspiration I’ve had.


This charming little piece is a silhouette painted on a glass dome.  I found it in Waterford, Ontario at a little flea market/antique mall there and as soon as I saw it, I just had to have it.  It also reminded me of the vacations I spent as a little girl in Fundy National Park, New Brunswick.  They had a free arts program every morning for all ages and my family usually started each day going there.  One of the pieces I made was done by placing a colouring book picture under a piece of glass to use as a pattern and then painting it on the glass with tempera paints.  I still have one of the glass paintings I did tucked away in a box somewhere.


I decided to do something along the same lines.  This piece still needs some tweaking but the inspiration for it came from a trip to Thunder Bay in northern Ontario.  As we drove through the night to get there, I remember seeing all the trees looking like black silhouettes and the northern lights looking like a pink, purple, and yellow glow above the trees.


For my other piece, I found a photograph of my city of London, Ontario’s skyline.  Again, I painted the skyline onto the glass and then created a sky behind that was reminiscent of a beautiful sunset.

To see the details and hints for how I created these and to check out Robi’s amazing creations as well, watch the playback of our show here:  http://www.linqto.com/PlaybackRoom.aspx?roomname=creativeedventures&name=SingleExplicit_2011_05_09_19_59_38_218

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Congratulations to all the Winners!!! | come2crop

Thank you to all who attended and to all who donated!!! Come2crop could not have been a success without the smashing doorprizes and the wonderful audience!!! What a great 1st crop and I know Cyn is ready to do it again! I appreciate all of my donors and all of my demoers! Great cyber crop everyone!!! Below is the list of prize winners and some prizes that are out there for everyone!!! Most of you have sent me your addresses but if you have not, please email me at leslierahye@nctv.com and I will make sure your prize gets to you!!
Thank you for coming!

Congrats Sheryl Thrasher!!

Congrats Karen Campbell!!

 Congrats to Genelle Voss!!!

Congrats Christine Patton!! 

Congrats to Vickie Stabile!!

 Congrats to Tambra!!!

Congrats to Paula Harris!! 

Congrats to Dee Thrasher & Laura Davidson!!

Congrats to Susan Dodge & Dawn!!

Congrats to Sam Gagen and Pam!!!

Challenge Prize Winners
 Monochromatic Challenge
Congrats Susan Dodge!!
Congrats Laura Davidson!!

Journaling Challenge
Congrats Laura Davidson!!

Most Pages Challenge 
Congrats Laura Davidson!! 

Prizes Available for Everyone!!

Cyn has a give away for the 1st 35 posters on the blog post below.

Robi has a digital giveaway of over 60 images on her website as well at decorablesart.com.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...