By All Means Create

Posted August 14, 2014 by tianakaczor
Categories: Fine Arts

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We’ve all had it, that voice that says we can’t do something, or that we can’t do it well enough, or we don’t have the time. Perhaps we need to listen to Van Gogh who said “If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.” The staff at Opus Art Supplies has made a video illustrating this quote. It was a nice little reminder for me this morning and thus I wanted to share it.

Nick Bantock’s “The Trickster’s Hat”

Posted May 20, 2014 by tianakaczor
Categories: Fine Arts

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The Tricksters Hat by Nick Bantock

The Tricksters Hat by Nick Bantock

“The Trickster’s Hat, A Mischievous Apprenticeship in Creativity” by Nick Bantock, was given to me recently as a birthday present. In the early nineties I was all excited about Bantock’s first huge success “Griffin and Sabine” which reflected my own love of collage, letters, found objects, and small art such as postage stamps. Then I “grew up” and life got in the way of creativity and play. I’ve become more concerned about a regular paycheque and paying the bills than I am about playing with my art materials. Where did I loose my path? I still create, but something is missing.

Even just having this book put into my hands has suddenly sparked my brain into creative drive. Like Julia Cameron’s best selling “The Artist’s Way”, which got me out of a creative and personal bump in my road a few years back, I hope “The Trickster’s Hat” will guide me down an artistic highway for some fun adventures.

<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/39181285″>Nick Bantock, Author & Artist</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/user1686564″>Jenn Strom</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

 

Make Good Art speech by Neil Gaiman

Posted December 31, 2013 by tianakaczor
Categories: Fine Arts

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With my recent feelings of being a bit blocked, this was an amazing speech to listen to at the end of one year and the beginning of a new one. No, I’m not blocked, I’ve just been caught up in paying bills, and completing chores, and trying to do things that everyone else says I should do. Life isn’t always easy, but at the end of the day, or perhaps the beginning, we should do at least one thing – make good art! Thank you Neil Gaiman for your good words.

 

 

Tiana’s Etsy Store is Now Open

Posted November 30, 2013 by tianakaczor
Categories: Fine Arts, Visual Art

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Now you can buy original and printed art by me on my Etsy store Tiana Kaczor Fine Arts. There’s still time before Christmas to pick up a hand printed photograph or a miniature watercolour. Or if you live near Vancouver, B.C. (so we don’t have to rely on mailing times) there’s even time to commission a watercolour or drawing based on a photo of your choice.
Visit my store here:  

I’m still learning about the wonderful word of Etsy, researching how other artists and craftspeople list their wares, so it’s been a little slow for getting some of my art up for sale, but you will find a few items there now.
I’m listing a variety of mediums and styles in hopes of getting some feedback from window shoppers and buyers about what they’re interested in getting.  Prices range from around $10 to $400.
I will be uploading more artworks for sale in the next few weeks, so keep checking back for new stock. Original watercolour postcards and vintage computer art prints are next on my list for stocking my shelves.

Tiana Kaczor Fine Arts Etsy banner

Come take a look at my Etsy store

Tiana’s Warrior donated to Richmond Public Library

Posted November 19, 2013 by tianakaczor
Categories: Fine Arts, Visual Art

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My painted warrior has been donated to the Richmond Public Library by the Williams and Lomness Families in memory of their parents Yvette and Walter Beswick. An unveiling and tea was held early November at the Brighouse (Main) Branch and the rain did not deter us from going outside and seeing “Wu Chang” back in the same spot he was 2 summers ago.

Tiana Kaczor's painted warrior gets donated to the Richmond Library

The Williams and Lomness Families at Warrior unveiling at the Brighouse branch of the Richmond Public Library

 

My warrior was bought by the BC Lions Society at their auction in September 2012 in hopes that they would find a donor who would place it in a public space in Richmond. Stephen Miller connected with the Williams and Lomness Families who wanted to do something to remember their parents. During the tea, daughters Julie Williams and Susan Lomness spoke about how their parents, Yvette and Walter, loved coming to the library, and the family all contributed to make this donation happen.

Donation was made in memeory of Yvette and Walter Beswick

Donation was made in memeory of Yvette and Walter Beswick

I’d like to thank the families for their generous donation. I am happy that my artwork is in a public place where it will be enjoyed by many people for many years. It is a library that I use often, so I will get to see my warrior regularly. (Many times artists make art and it is sold and you never see it again.) The staff of the Richmond Public Library are all excited about this unique addition to their institution, and I know they will take care of my “Mr. Wu”.

Risk The Highest Step in the World

Posted October 17, 2013 by tianakaczor
Categories: Fine Arts

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Ghost River Theatre’s David van Belle and Eric Rose have created a production that asks “What happens when you take a risk? What makes you take that first step from an unimaginable height? ”  “The Highest Step in the World” is a one man show (David van Belle, who does a great job) with 2 men behind the scenes who make him fly. Based on Joseph Kittinger’s record breaking jump from a weather balloon in 1960, the play also includes the story of Vesna Vulovic, an airline stewardess who survived a fall out of a bombed plane, and the mythological characters of Daedalus and Icarus.

Sometimes people take risks and fail. On my way to the theatre I was driving around a tight curve to get onto the Queensborough Bridge. Traffic slowed and I eventually had to pass a semi-trailer truck lying on its side on top of the cement road dividers.  The driver had obviously taken the curve at too high a speed and tipped over. Some of its wheels were still spinning. Emergency vehicles hadn’t arrived yet. When I returned across the bridge in the late afternoon after my theatre experience, I saw the truck being hauled away, the cab horribly crushed. I don’t know whether the driver survived. We take risks in our vehicles every day, and often don’t think about it.

Then there are the risks we do think about, like jumping out of a tree when we’re little, or creating a new piece of art. It can be as small as deciding to use a different colour palette when redesigning your living room, or as large as taking the steps to walk on the moon. Taking risks can be scary, but without it life can be boring. Without risks we would never have new inventions, or art pieces. We might never get married, or travel to a different country. I’ve always been a cautious person, but I do take some risks, and maybe it’s time to take a few more.

For you, why not take a risk in theatre and go see “The Highest Step in the World” on now until October 26, 2013, in Richmond’s Gateway Theatre. Here’s the trailer:

 

Beginners Watercolour Lesson – Value Sketch and Negative Space

Posted September 27, 2013 by tianakaczor
Categories: Visual Art

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Over the last couple of years I have been fine tuning my beginners watercolour classes for adults and children. I usually start off with the same lessons for all ages, just moving a little faster, and into more detail with the adults. After teaching the colour wheel and basic brush techniques there are several lessons I run through. I have found that my own watercolour skills are always improved every time I demonstrate these lessons, and therefore recommend beginners and seasoned watercolourists to run through these simple “warm ups” every once in awhile.

Maple seed value study in gray watercolour.

Maple seed value study in gray watercolour.

The Value Sketch teaches us to look at the values in real objects and paint from life instead of a photo. I bring to class some simple found objects like leaves or maple seeds. Sometimes I have the students use only one colour, like gray, and then all they worry about is the intensity of the colour and watering it down for the light areas. Other times I have students try to mix the actual colours on the found object. We mix puddles of the colours in our tray, and leave room to add water for lighter values. Once the colours are ready then we can start the painting.

Value color sketch of maple seeds and feather

Value color sketch of maple seeds and feather

We start with a light pencil sketch. For young children I may allow them to trace the object so they don’t get frustrated with the drawing. Then we apply 3 or 4 layers of paint, working from the lightest areas of the object to the darkest. These are small paintings, so very little paint should be on the brush. We don’t want the colours to run. Then wait a couple minutes for the wash to dry before painting the next layer of detail. The last layer is the darkest areas and then the shadow under the object is added to make it look like the leaf or seed is sitting on a table.

The Value Sketch is a quick lesson so I usually do a second lesson in the last half of the class. Since you rarely use white paint in watercolours, but instead leave the white paper free of paint, it’s good to have an exercise that helps students be more aware of the paper and leaving areas blank. Negative space drawings can be taught if time permits, or you can go directly into an exercise of painting a white fence.

Fence Negative Space Watercolour

Fence Negative Space Watercolour

We start by lightly drawing the posts and rails using only one line each in the middle. It’s nice to give a little perspective as the fence goes away from you and perhaps add a gate. Next we mix our paint colour puddles, which are the colours of the background of grass or bushes. When we’re ready we can start by prepping the paper with plain water in each negative space area, or we can just jump in and start painting. Try to load enough paint on the brush so that you can finish a whole rectangular space between the posts and rails. Be careful not to get too close to your pencil lines as then you’ll have a very skinny fence! When one negative space is done then load up your brush again and paint the next one. Dip in different colours to add more interest to your background. Be careful not to have each negative space a different colour as that wouldn’t look natural, but instead dip into a second colour halfway through painting one area and work fast so the colours blend on the paper. When dry you could add some detail of grass blades in front of your fence. Then make your white fence 3 dimensional by choosing a direction for the sunlight and painting shadows on one side of each rail and post. When the painting is totally dry lightly erase your pencil lines.

If you have any questions about these exercises please write to me in the comment section.  Some books I consulted while planning my lessons this past summer were: “Watercolour For Starters” by Paul Talbot-Greaves, and “Watercolour Challenge, Techniques in Practice” Channel 4 Books.


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