‘My first art show’ | Artwork from Lewis Vincent Elementary students featured at Arts Council

DENHAM SPRINGS — Thierry Santangelo couldn’t stop staring at his painting hanging on the wall.

After all, this was the first art show for the third-grader at Lewis Vincent Elementary, who showed up to the artists reception dressed in his Sunday best — a crisp dotted white button-down and a dark blue tie speckled with tiny dinosaurs.

The 10-year-old said he could get used to days like this.

“This is my first art show, but I want my art to be in a museum one day,” he said. “And I want to make a big sculpture.”

He’s off to a good start.

Santangelo is one of two dozen Lewis Vincent Elementary students who’ve had their artwork on display at the Arts Council of Livingston Parish (ACLP) this month.

Throughout March, the walls in the ACLP classroom have been filled with student-made acrylic paintings of Vincent Van Gogh’s “The Starry Night.” The paintings were completed during a five-lesson program sponsored by the Arts Council, which received an anonymous grant to fund art classes at schools in the parish.

While students, their families and visitors perused the various starry night paintings, Santangelo proudly held up his own, which like the others featured seven gold stars and a crescent moon shining down on a small village.

He had fun painting this picture, he said, as well as learning about some of history’s most famous artists — Van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, and Leonardo da Vinci — during the ACLP program.

“Van Gogh, Picasso, da Vinci, they’re all pretty good,” he said, drawing laughs from Lewis Vincent Elementary teachers Tiffini Ellis and Donna Quigley.

Lewis Vincent Elementary is one of 13 schools the Arts Council has sent professional artists to this year thanks to a grant underwritten by an anonymous donor, former ACLP president Mary Felder said. The grant paid for the teachers and the supplies that were used in 34 art classes across the parish, including in Denham Springs, Springfield, Albany, and Holden.

The lessons have been taught by local artists Robert Reynolds, Liz Harman, Rosemary Patchen, Martin Gentry and Sara Smith, who covered both visual and performing arts with students.

Sixty-two students took part in the course at Lewis Vincent Elementary, where Harman and Patchen visited three classes once a month to discuss different mediums and artists before having the students create their own artwork.

In the first lesson last fall, Harman and Patchen had students make their own portfolios, Ellis said. In later classes, they had them work with chalk and make a still-life illustration of an apple. “The Starry Night” paintings on display were completed over two classes. 

Quigley said the students “looked forward to every class.”

“What was so impressive is that they retained the knowledge from lesson to lesson about each of the artists that were introduced and the elements of art they studied,” Quigley said. “They remembered all of it, and they were excited when the artists came. They couldn’t wait for those days.”

The paintings will be on display through the end of March, when the Arts Council will clear out space for its upcoming “Wonders of the World” exhibit in April and May.

The Cast of ‘Victoria’ Just Recreated an Iconic Portrait of the Royal Family

From Town & Country

Season three of the royal drama Victoria may have already aired in the U.S., but it won’t drop in the U.K. until this Sunday.

In honor of the premiere of new episodes, the cast recreated Franz Winterhalter’s iconic 1846 painting of the royal family. The portrait depicts Victoria as both the monarch and a mother, a theme which resonates through the show’s third season.

Photo credit: Franz Winterhalter/The Royal Collection Trust / ITV

Photo credit: Franz Winterhalter/The Royal Collection Trust / ITV

View photos

Photo credit: Franz Winterhalter/The Royal Collection Trust / ITV


According to the Royal Collection Trust, “The scene is one of domestic harmony, peace and happiness, albeit with many allusions to royal status: grandeur in the form of jewels and furniture, tradition (through the Order of the Garter) and the continuation of the royal lineage.” Notably, the Prince of Wales stands alongside his mother. Several of Victoria’s other children: Prince Alfred, Princess Victoria, Princess Alice, and Princess Helena are also pictured.

Per the RCT, Queen Victoria considered it “one of her three favourite portraits of the Prince.” The work now resides in the East Gallery of Buckingham Palace.

Photo credit: Dominic Lipinski - PA Images - Getty Images

Photo credit: Dominic Lipinski - PA Images - Getty Images

View photos

Photo credit: Dominic Lipinski – PA Images – Getty Images


While the recreation is quite striking, it isn’t exact. For example, the thrones of the fictionalized Victoria and Albert are a bit more grand than the actual portrait, and the clothing of the children has been adjusted as well.

But perhaps it serves as a fitting metaphor for how the series tells a version of the Queen’s life, with some details changed for dramatic effect.

Victoria will premiere on ITV on Sunday, March 24 at 9 p.m. If you’re in the States, all eight episodes of season three are currently available to watch on Amazon Prime, at the link below:

(‘You Might Also Like’,)

Art exhibit fuses media of K-State graduate students

An exhibition at the Manhattan Arts Center brings together the diverse types of work created in K-State’s art department.

The exhibit, titled “Fusion,” highlights the work of K-State students in the master’s of fine arts program. It includes work in all media, from graphic design to painting to photography.

Seven students had the opportunity to put together a show and share their work with the community.

“It allows us to gain experience in what we’ll do in the future,” said Jenn Hudson, one of the participating students.

Kehinde Osho, another student, said it gives them a chance to reflect on what they want to show to the public.

“It’s a great opportunity to share with the community the things we’re doing while in grad school,” Osho said.

Hudson uses her oil and watercolor paintings to explore issues still faced by women today. She said that although society has made progress, there is still a long road ahead.

“We feel we’ve achieved equality, but we have these ingrained notions about what it means to be a woman,” Hudson said. “I wanted to continue the conversation about what that means.”

Her large paintings feature women in oil paint with their inner thoughts in watercolor behind them. Hudson said combining the paints allowed her to explore both media while using the watercolor to make the subject’s thoughts more subtle and in the background, showing the fears and concerns they live with in everyday life but keep to themselves.

Hudson said that even in 2019, the world still needs to discuss gender inequality and other issues facing women in Western culture.

“My work is one more voice in front of a microphone,” she said. “If that conversation is there, then equality is coming, but we’re not going to get there by sweeping inequality under the rug.”

Osho is a graphic designer, and he worked on a book about historic graphic designers. He said he tried to reflect each designer’s style while telling the story of their life and career.

“They were three different people with three different ideas of how to do their work,” Osho said. “But (the book) should still feel like you’re looking at one body of work.”

The project includes the stories of Anni Albers, Saul Bass and Wolfgang Weingart. Albers was a textile artist, so Osho said the design of her pages stuck to a kind of geometric style that she used. Bass was well known for designing the opening sequences for such films as “The Man with the Golden Arm,” “North by Northwest” and “Psycho.” Weingart is notable for experimenting with typography and challenging conventions of design.

Although the three had different styles, Osho said they wanted to create connections between the stories and make the book cohesive.

“In telling the story, the layout had to reflect some of those ideas and carry that throughout,” Osho said.

The exhibit by K-State master’s of fine arts students will be open until April 6 at Manhattan Arts Center. It includes work by Katharina Bossmann, Jennifer Hudson, Lathan Mastellar, Mauresa Mitchell, Kehinde Osho, Hailey Quick and Dee Roof.

Union County Senior Art Exhibit Now Accepting Registrations from Artists Age 60 and Older

Residents of Union County, age 60 or older, are invited to register for the Union County Senior Citizens Art Exhibit. Qualifying works of art will be on display at the Atrium of Liberty Hall Center at 1085 Morris Avenue in Union from May 28 to July 8, and the artists will be guests at a special awards reception at the Atrium in June.

The deadline to register is Wednesday, May 15.

“Each year the Senior Art Exhibit provides older residents with an opportunity to share their view of the world through the work of their hands,” said Freeholder Chair Bette Jane Kowalski. “We are proud to support this program, which helps to connect the different generations in our community and build an appreciation for the skills and insights of senior artists.”

Sign Up for E-News

The Senior Art Exhibit is an annual program presented and coordinated by the Union County Office of Cultural and Heritage Affairs. Artists at any level of skill or experience are invited to register, including amateurs, non-professionals and working professionals. To qualify, the artwork must have been created within the past three years and must be an original creation of the artist.

Registrants can submit art in a variety of categories: acrylic painting, oil painting, watercolor, pastel, works on paper (drawing), photography, digital art (excluding digital photography), mixed media, printmaking, sculpture, and craft.

All artworks entered will be judged by a panel of professional artists. In each art category, separate awards will be given to professionals and non-professionals. First-place winners in all categories will go on to compete in September at the state level in the New Jersey Senior Citizens Art Show in East Windsor.

For complete information and online registration, visit the Union County website at ucnj.org/senior-art-show.

To receive a brochure with complete instructions and a registration form by mail or email, call Martha Sturm, Senior Arts Coordinator, at the Union County Office of Cultural and HeritagFe Affairs, 908-558-2552, or email culturalinfo@ucnj.org. Relay users dial 711.

Completed applications may be mailed to Senior Art Exhibit, Union County Office of Cultural and Heritage Affairs, 633 Pearl Street, Elizabeth, NJ 07202, faxed to 908-558-2652, or scanned and emailed to msturm@ucnj.org.

For all Union County programs and services visit ucnj.org, call the Public Info Line, 877-424-1234, email info@ucnj.org or use the online Contact Form.

Connect with Union County on social media

Spring Arts Festival brings thousands to Ocean Springs

OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) – Perfect weather helped draw a huge crowd to downtown Ocean Springs for the 26th annual Spring Arts Festival: Herb, Garden and Art.

It’s worth the drive, according to Deena Knox. She and her friends drove more than seven hours from Galveston, Texas, to attend the festival

“There’s so much variety, and really, things that you don’t find everywhere, and there’s a lot of coastal art, which we live in Galveston on the water, so that’s what we do; we decorate in coastal,” she said.

The annual festival brings together more than 150 crafters, artists and plant vendors in the City of Discovery.

This is woodturner Michael Mishler’s first year at the festival. He hoped his array of ornaments, lighthouses and more will attract a few buyers over the weekend. All of it is made from scrap wood.

“Even though some of my stuff might be a little pricier, it’s nice when people come by and say, ‘oh, I love your work,’” he said.

“I really love this area too. We did drive around a little bit last night, and it’s like, man, this is a neat little place,” he said.

That is something organizers love to hear. They said around 15,000 people come out each day. That’s big for business.

“This is how we bring, generate activity, revenue and a quality of life to the community. So it’s a fun way to generate activities and help our local businesses sustain,” said Cynthia Dobbs Sutton, executive director of the Ocean Springs Chamber of Commerce.

Gayle Underwood travels every year from Pensacola to do some shopping.

“I’ve already taken my first load to the car. I’m on my second,” she said.

She also loves exploring the Coast and is always looking for recommendations on what to see and do while she’s here.

“It’s to find out what other people know that I don’t. So it’s nice to hear that locals like exactly what I do,” Underwood said.

It sounded like the Mississippi Gulf Coast may be winning her over.

This year’s festival also included artist demonstrations and educational sessions. It continues Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Copyright 2019 WLOX. All rights reserved.

A Portrait of Prepubescent Style in South Wales

“The Dune (and a man passing by), Porthcawl,” 2018.

Photographs by Clémentine Schneiderman and Charlotte James

Of all the images that the photographer Clémentine Schneidermann and the art director Charlotte James have made of (and with) children in South Wales, few show interior scenes. Here is one, in which, amid the gloom and clatter of a community center, two figures are brightly lit. A young girl with blond ringlets gives the camera a bored glare, while a red-haired boy, wearing a luxe hillock of green fake fur, flashes us his newly augmented fingernails. Beside his sullen companion, the boy looks like a prepubescent night-club impresario, or a glamorous tween art star. In a photographic project that invites children to style and invent themselves, he might be the most daring of all. Elsewhere, you’ll spot him in platform boots and off-the-shoulder brown velour, his face full of cheek, and his cigarette delicately plied.

The series is titled “It’s Called Ffasiwn”—the word means “fashion” in Welsh—and twenty of the photographs will go on view at the Martin Parr Foundation, in Bristol, on March 27th. (Since the nineteen-seventies, Parr, the celebrated English photographer, has been documenting various garish strata of British life. His foundation’s gallery opened in 2017.) Schneidermann is from Paris, and moved to Wales as a student; James is a native of Merthyr Tydfil, the town in and around which most of the photographs were taken. The two met in 2015, and soon began running workshops for eight-to-twelve-year-olds—James teaching the rudiments of design, tailoring, and styling—before photographing them in the mostly deprived districts where the children live. The first shoot, in November, 2015, produced one of the most startling pictures. Five girls, photographed in front of a stone wall and scraggy hillside, have tricked themselves out in full Gothic-Victorian funeral g arb: black lace mantillas, black fans, and teary marcelled locks.

“Cherry,” Gellideg, 2017.

“It’s Called Fashion (Look it Up), Merthyr Tydfil,” 2016.

“Rio, Labour Club,” 2017.

Many of the photographs seem to document some vernacular ritual; one shows what I thought, at first glance, was a group of Catholic girls dressed for First Holy Communion, or for regional variations of folk dance. But the girls, bride-like in white, have climbed onto the roof of a low concrete building, and, in another image, six kids, clad in more green fur, have convened on a housing estate in an eerie, children-of-the-damned array. If this is fashion, then the trend among these girls and (far fewer) boys is for an uncanny amalgam of childish dress-up—a girl in a laundry-bag dress, a little boy trimmed with gold tinsel—and gleeful-sinister surrealism. The workshops and the photographic series are carrying on as the models grow older: Will they lose their edge as the strictures of embarrassed adolescence set in?

“Trago Mills, Merthyr,” 2018.

“Summer Street Party, Merthyr Vale,” 2018.

The Welsh valleys—their beauty, their culture, their economic depredations—have long been subjects of photographic attention, both documentary and visionary. In 1950, W. Eugene Smith was dispatched to Wales by Life to record the general-election campaign of the Labour Prime Minister Clement Attlee, and came back with darkling studies of generations of miners. Robert Frank followed, three years later, photographing more coal-darkened faces against slag heaps and terraced cottages hugging the hillsides. Bruce Davidson, in the mid-nineteen-sixties, added color to this image repertoire, but his famous picture of a Welsh bride and groom, taken on a hill above a power station’s cooling towers, is in black and white, cleaving to a certain monochrome vision of poverty and profundity.

“Spring, Gurnos,” 2017.

“Valentine Disco Party, Gurnos Social Club,” 2018.

“Tia with a Ginger Cat, Winchestown,” 2018.

This mid-century photographic bequest surely haunts some of the work that Schneidermann, James, and their young collaborators have made. But their photographs respond more directly to a later iconography. Most Welsh coal mines were closed by the end of the nineteen-eighties; they were already depleted, and their ends hastened by Thatcherite decree. Images of the valleys now signal post-industrial decline and, lately, a degree of Brexit-voting political self-harm. “It’s Called Ffasiwn” depicts spalling gray housing estates, but they are not always what they seem. In a photograph that will be blown up to wallpaper scale in the Bristol exhibition, a group of children parade in lilac costumes along an abandoned street. The shuttered windows and doors have nothing to do with poverty, only with threatened flooding from a nearby river. The kids carry on as if it’s a royal jubilee—as so often, glamour, comedy, and some innocent purchase on the future have met in the ruin s.

“Last Days of Summer, Blaenavon,” 2018.

What it’s like to paint in space—according to a NASA astronaut

For many decades, a medical myth persisted that people were either “right brained” or “left brained.” The theory went that we are naturally predisposed to either being more creative (right-hemisphere dominant) or more mathematical (left-hemisphere dominant). But that phenomenon has now been thoroughly debunked, and its stereotypes along with it.

I and so many of my NASA colleagues are examples of how there is no reason to believe that scientists can’t be artists—or vice versa. Photography and music have always been a part of human spaceflight, and in early missions, cosmonaut Alexey Leonov did colored pencil sketches of orbital sunrise and charcoal portraits of his Apollo-Soyuz crew mates. As we’ve spent more time as humans not just working but living in space, the number of astronauts creating something artistic during their missions has continued to grow. Just recently, my friend Cady brought her flute and played it in space, and my friend Don created some really beautiful star trail photos using time-lapse photography.

My first spaceflight was in late 2009. I traveled to the International Space Station (ISS) on the Space Shuttle Discovery, and spent a little over three months living and working on the ISS. Every day in space was surprising—a different mix of science and maintenance and outreach activities. Some of the more exciting days might have included a spacewalk or flying the robotic arm to grab a cargo vehicle as it approached; other days included everything from fixing the toilet to testing our water to harvesting plants and mixing fuels in the combustion chamber.

As it turned out, there’s not a whole lot of free time during a space mission. But with what little spare time I did have, I liked to do the same thing as I loved back on Earth: I painted.

What it’s like to paint in space

I grew up doing artsy crafty things, and as an adult—if I could find spare time—I would paint, do some woodworking, or tinker in the garden. Thankfully, before my first spaceflight, my crew support representative and friend Maryjane Anderson encouraged me to think about how I might spend some of my spare time while living for months in space. Thanks to her, I packed a small watercolor kit, and became the first person to paint a watercolor in space.

When people hear I’ve painted in space, they often comment about how it must have been fun to float in front of a window and paint whatever part of Earth I was looking at. And I agree, that would be great—if we weren’t for the fact that we’re passing over the planet at five miles a second. You literally wouldn’t get the brush to the paper before the thing you’re trying to paint would be out of sight. There’s no plein air painting in space.

As everything outside was moving too fast to paint, I printed a picture (yes, we have printers on board the ISS) of one of the most beautiful sights I’d ever seen: this little tiny chain of islands on the northern coast of Venezuela called Los Roques. I remember seeing them through the window of the space station, taking a photo, and thinking that someone had already taken a brush and painted the shape of a wave on the ocean. It was just gorgeous.

Nicole Stott with a painting of the Los Roques islands.

Every night just before going to bed, I would paint a little bit of those islands. I took up a watercolor paint set because I needed my paint to be non-toxic and in a solid form. But unlike normal watercolors, you can’t dip your brush in a cup of water—because there are no cups of water! The water would just float right out of the cup. Instead, you have drink bags—which are like big CapriSun bags—with a straw on the top.

Without a cup of water for my watercolors, painting was therefore a real process. To start, I would squirt out a tiny little ball of water from the drink bag and watch it float in front of me in zero gravity. Then I would put the brush toward it to touch it. What was extra cool was that even before I got the brush to the water, right before it made contact, the bubble of water seemed to move over to the brush, like it was attracted to the bristles in some way. I’m still not really sure what caused this—maybe something to do with surface tension or some weak static charge on the water or brush—but this vacuum effect was really interesting to watch.

Then the ball of water would be floating around the end of the brush; it didn’t mix with the bristles like it does here on Earth. I would then mush this water droplet around in the paint. But just like when I tried to “dip” the end of the brush into the ball of water, when I moved the ball of water toward the solid paint, it was like the paint was pulling the ball of water toward it. The same would then happen when I pulled the colored water back toward the brush. It was so weird to watch this whole dance of water and paint and brush take place.

Now, finally, I would be ready to actually paint. But I had to be really careful as I was putting the brush to the paper, because if I got too close and actually touched the ball of water or the brush to the paper, it would just suck it up all at once. In the end, it was like I was just dragging this colored ball of water along the paper, just above the surface. It was so neat.

The finished watercolor, painted in space.

I may have been the first person to paint with watercolors in space—if you can call smooshing a colored ball of water around a piece of paper painting—but there are many others who have brought their creative Earthly talents with them to space, too. For example, my friend Karen brought some little pieces of fabric and her sewing kit with her and quilted in space, and my friend Richard went a little Jackson Pollock when he used acrylic paints and paper floating in a glove box to demonstrate what happens to paint in zero gravity.

You don’t suddenly become less human in space, less passionate about the things that bring you joy. In fact, while you’re hurtling around the planet’s orbit being suspended in zero gravity, being able to connect with the hobbies you love is a way to stay grounded. We’re just being humans—but in space.

The opportunity to paint in space was an inspiration for me. I brought that experience back to Earth with me in a way that has inspired all of the work I’ve done since.

Mixing science with art

Before I retired from NASA three years ago, I was thinking about how I could share my experience in space with the rest of the world. I think that astronauts feel obligated to communicate what they learned about the universe, and themselves, to the public. As scientists, we can’t get away with just publishing papers and not actually doing anything to help the Earth. If we’re not making a difference, then what was the point in the first place?

I decided I wanted to raise the awareness of the beautiful intersection between art and science. I wanted to encourage more young people to not be led down a path that pigeonholes them as only artistic or scientific. Whether it’s the way art has always been used to better communicate scientific data, science fiction that’s led to science fact, or simply that our planet and our spacecraft are beautiful pieces of art in their own right, art and science are more connected than what we give them credit for.

Shortly after retiring, I had the opportunity to curate an art exhibit at the visitor complex at the Johnson Space Center. I had been working on an endeavor called the Spacesuit Art Project with kids around the world where our team, including spacesuit company ILC Dover, designed artistic space suits. We put them in the center of the room, and we showcased beautiful examples around them of how science and art can come together. We wanted to show that you can be both creative and scientific at the same time.

I reached out to all my friends in the technical community who I had discovered had something artsy going on and asked them to bring their creations over. Everybody got involved, from our NASA exercise physiology folks to scientists and researchers and astronauts and engineers and Mission Control people. We had hand-crafted wooden longboard skateboards, paintings, drawings, Karen’s quilt, musical instruments, sculptural cakes, stained glass—everything artistic that you can imagine on display, all by people who would normally only be thought of as techy.

Examples of some of the art displayed at NASA’s Johnson Space Center.

Each of these folks also provided a short, personal statement about how art and science had impacted their lives. It was wonderful, and it was really well received by the public. I heard a kid say to his mom, “I didn’t know you could do art and science.” I was like, “Yes kid! Yes!”

It was equally cool—if not more—to see people who had worked together for over 20 years discover something new about each other. They spent every day working together at the Space Center, yet they had no clue about the artistic stuff that was going on outside of their work. They’d come in—Bob with his skateboards, Ginger with her cakes—and look at each other like, “What are you doing here?” It’s like they got reintroduced to each other. And I believe that because of that, they probably work better together on the techy stuff, too. They’re more creative in the way they consider solutions to whatever problems they’re having to deal with.

Whether through my own artwork, curating the artwork of technical communities, or through the work we’re doing with space-themed art therapy programs with the Space for Art Foundation, I now dedicate my time back on Earth to creatively sharing my spaceflight experience.  As both an artist and an astronaut, I’m an example of what can happen when you keep your mind open, rather than subscribing to hair-brained left-brain/right-brain myths.

I’m on a mission now to creatively combine the awe and wonder of my spaceflight experience with my artwork to help inspire everyone’s appreciation of our role as crewmates together here on spaceship Earth. As I’ve experienced through my co-workers with the space program, we’re all better off using our whole brains. We should all mix a little art and science in our own lives and in support of whatever mission of greater good we’re on.

This article is part of Quartz Ideas, our home for bold arguments and big thinkers.

Can the Internet Ruin the Porpoise of a Painting?

What youre looking at could be an Admiral Dolphin NOT a General Porpoise!

What you’re looking at could be an Admiral Dolphin NOT a General Porpoise! JASMYNE KEIMIG

This morning, I woke up to a slew of tweets and messages concerning a post I wrote yesterday about my genuine appreciation of what I thought was a painting of a General Porpoise over at General Porpoise Doughnuts. The name of the artist who painted this masterpiece was brought to my attention: Robyn Jordan. Jordan is a Seattle cartoonist and illustrator who actually created some comics for us here at The Stranger.

In a comment left on the original porpoise post, Jordan revealed that Renee Erickson and Jeremy Price (the founders and owners of Sea Creatures, a restaurant and hospitality group that includes places like The Walrus & The Carpenter) commissioned her to paint this portrait. It’s inspired by a photoshopped image found on the internet, which she painted while binging Gilmore Girls. She says she hadn’t used oil paint in a while, but, to me, it’s excellent, excellent work. Emotional, as I’ve said previously. Kitschy. Silly. Perfect.

However, the internet always finds a way to take away momentary joy. As many commenters pointed out, the regalia adorning the sea mammal does not indicate that he’s a general but an admiral. Though they are equivalent ranks, a general is in the Army and an admiral in the Navy. Furthermore, someone alleged that it’s not a porpoise—but a dolphin. For those of you unaware of the difference, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration lays it out like this:

“Dolphins tend to have prominent, elongated ‘beaks’ and cone-shaped teeth, while porpoises have smaller mouths and spade-shaped teeth. The dolphin’s hooked or curbed dorsal fin…also differs from the porpoise’s triangular dorsal fin. Generally speaking, dolphin bodies are leaner, and porpoises’ are portly.”
OK—say I were to take these concerns with the utmost sincerity and seriousness. Let’s start with the second claim: that this is in fact a dolphin NOT a porpoise. Since we can only see the sea creature from the waist up and they are facing the front, there’s really no way we can speak to its portliness nor its dorsal fin situation. And due to the impressionistic quality of the painting style and the shortened perspective, it’s too difficult to discern whether or not the beak is elongated or the cone/spade nature of the teeth. It also has two goddamn arms. So, I can say this confidently, for all intents and purposes, this is a porpoise. And now to the general and admiral claim. The “scrambled eggs” (the nickname for the golden oak leaf embellishments found on the bills of dress hats) on this porpoise’s hat reveal its status as an admiral, not a general. To which I say, fine. But, on some level, I do find the genuine concern about the veracity of military regalia on an improbable portrait of a sea creature who, to my knowledge, does not have the ability to participate in the Navy, not to mention the ability to lead one, a little aggravating. So this is an Admiral Porpoise. The pun is now ruined! There’s something to be said about how context is really everything in our interpretation of art. Had this portrait been commissioned for the halls of say, a military museum, it would be much more of an obvious mistitling. But its context within a doughnut shop called “General Porpoise,” I, as a civilian, immediately understood this portrait is a play off the name. But fine. I showed my ass in not knowing military rank. And now I’m stuck thinking about how the improbability of a porpoise leading a naval fleet is a jump, but to have it leading an army is an even bigger one. No word yet on whether or not the cafe plans on updating the portrait with the proper regalia. In the meantime, go admire it over coffee and a doughnut.

Hot Chicken and Art Show coming to Murfreesboro

Nancy De Gennaro, Murfreesboro Daily News Journal Published 10:42 a.m. CT March 22, 2019


Show Thumbnails

Show Captions

Last SlideNext Slide

Hot chicken fans and art lovers alike, take note.

The Rutherford County Hot Chicken and Art Show is set for 6-10 p.m. April 12 at The Gateway Village, 804 N. Thompson Lane Suites in Murfreesboro.

“I love to put the shine on people who are doing really cool things,” said Taiisha Bradley, publicist and curator of the inaugural event.

Rutherford County Hot Chicken and Art Show is set for 6-10 p.m. April 12 at Gateway Village in Murfreesboro.

Rutherford County Hot Chicken and Art Show is set for 6-10 p.m. April 12 at Gateway Village in Murfreesboro. (Photo: Submitted)

Bradley said she got the idea for the event from her cousin, who was an exhibitor at the Center for the Arts last year. 

“It just happened organically,” said Bradley, who is also founder of the Rutherford County Black Business Network.

In addition to a variety of vendors, renowned artist Preston Mitchell will make an appearance.

Bradley’s cousin, April Nealey, will have an interactive exhibit where participants can sip on wine and create their own earrings.

Big Creek Winery Tasting Room will also have a pop-up event with free tastings and wine for sale.

“It’s going to be great. We have so many cool things lined up,” Bradley said.

Admission is free, but reservations are requested and can be made at TaiishaBradley.com/events. All ages are welcome.

Murfreesboro has seen some go, welcomed new ones and there are more coming soon Murfreesboro Daily News Journal

Food vendors

  • The Alley on Main
  • Boro Town Cakes
  • Grandma’s Hands Desserts
  • B. Chill Lemonade by Kid CEO, Kinyah Bean
  • Gourmet Popsicles by King of Pops
  • Poptails & Brew by Brunch Money (ages 21+)
  • Special guests

  • Vito Tisdale, “Big V” of Nappy Roots
  • Preston Mitchell
  • Shawn Whitsell + The Collective
  • Sankofa Achievement Center Student Volunteers
  • Featured event experiences
  • Big Creek Winery Tasting Room Pop Up  
  • Mbellished Accessories “Wine and Wood” Paint Your Own Earrings
  • NXT LVL Xperience VIP Lounge
  • Payne Technology Recharge & Refresh Lounge 
  • Spoken Word Performances by Shawn Whitsell + Collective
  • Live Painting by April Nealey of April Reign Arts
  • Photo Booth by Nayyar Photography
  • Featured artists

  • Jerika Renee Art
  • Gwen Mahan
  • Brittany Goodson
  • Andre Clermont
  • April Nealey
  • Amberly Clemmons
  • Art by Brette
  • Allinda Santival
  • Samira Hardcastle
  • Jalisa Ranae Photography
  • Vendors

  • Kandles by Kierra, by Kid CEO Kierra Perkins
  • Mo’ Scrubs by Toya
  • Classic Hair Care by Crystle Bond-Jones
  • Anointed Hands Reiki
  • Unrefined Naturals
  • Colored Essentials
  • Queen Rosmon Bling
  • For more information, contact Bradley at Taiisha@TaiishaBradley.com or 615-919-4454.

    Reach reporter Nancy DeGennaro at degennaro@dnj.com and follow her on Twitter @NanDeGennaro.

    Read or Share this story: www.dnj.com/story/news/2019/03/22/rutherford-county-hot-chicken-art-show-preston-mitchell-big-v-nappy-roots-black-business-network/3239017002/

    National Portrait Gallery Won’t Proceed With Donation From Purdue Pharma’s Sackler Family

    A British art gallery has decided it won’t take 1 million pound ($1.3 million) pledge from a charitable organization run by Purdue Pharma’s Sackler family.

    In a statement on Wednesday, the National Portrait Gallery and Sackler family agreed to not move forward with the donation to the National Portrait Gallery. Without listing allegations, which center on Purdue Pharma’s OxyContin and the drug’s possible influence on the U.S. opioid crisis, a spokesperson for the Sacklers, which own Purdue Pharma through family trusts, said that the family has “vigorously denied” any wrongdoing, but it doesn’t want the allegations to be “a distraction” for the National Portrait Gallery’s work.

    Purdue Pharma and other prominent drug makers have found themselves in the crosshairs in lawsuits across the U.S. Those lawsuits, which have largely come from state governments and local municipalities, allege that the companies that sell painkillers haven’t done enough to educate users on health risks. They also allege that the drug makers have put their own sales interests ahead of public health. Ultimately, the lawsuits suggest the companies have played a role in the U.S. opioid crisis.

    While the drug makers have denied those allegations, the lawsuits have hurt their efforts in other areas, like philanthropy. Some activists have boycotted and held protests at places where charitable organizations accept donations from companies or families that sell painkillers. Like the National Portrait Gallery, other organizations have stayed far away from the companies to sidestep any involvement in the controversy.

    “The Sackler Trust has supported institutions playing crucial roles in health, education, science and the arts for almost half a century and we were pleased to have the opportunity to offer a new gift to support the National Portrait Gallery,” a spokesperson for the Sackler Trust said in a statement. “The giving philosophy of the family has always been to actively support institutions while never getting in the way of their mission. It has become evident that recent reporting of allegations made against Sackler family members may cause this new donation to deflect the National Portrait Gallery from its important work. The allegations against family members are vigorously denied, but to avoid being a distraction for the NPG, we have decided not to proceed at this time with the donation. We continue to believe strongly in the gallery and the wonderful work it does.”

    “As Chair of the National Portrait Gallery, I acknowledge the generosity of the Sackler Family and their support of the Arts over the years,” David Ross, the chair of the National Portrait Gallery said in a statement. “We understand and support their decision not to proceed at this time with the donation to the Gallery.”

    Update at 8:01 a.m. ET on March 22 to include statements from the Sackler family and National Portrait Gallery.

    Arts Hidden Forests: Connecting Art and Environmental Awareness

    Human activities have been gulping the natural resources and disrupting the ecosystem at an unprecedented level. Raising the environmental awareness has become a pressing issue globally. More and more artists, as people who are highly sensitive to the surroundings, have realized their obligation and power to take initiative in this aspect. They avail of various art forms, often in hybrid appliance, to evince the severity of environmental issues and raise the environmental awareness. Moderated by Joyce Hei-ting Wong, this panel will explore connection between art and environmental awareness with two artists, James Prosek and Tam Wai Ping, Lukas, both of whom raise environmental awareness through art yet in starkly dissimilar approaches. Ecologist Billy Hau would also join the discussion, analyzing how artistic practices can be embraced by scientific practices.

    James Prosek, the American artist, is famed for his veristic, intricate and detailed portrayal of natural creatures. His best known work is an illustrated book published at the age of 19 when he was still studying English Literature at Yale. It features seventy of his watercolor paintings of the trout of North America. Gifted with multifaceted talents, Prosek has been striving to celebrate biodiversity of the natural world and promote awareness of the species’ endangerment through, not only painting, but also writing and filmmaking. He has written for The New York Times and National Geographic Magazine and won a Peabody Award in 2003 for his documentary about traveling through England in the footsteps of Izaak Walton, the seventeenth-century author of The Compleat Angler. Prosek also co-founded a conservation initiative called “World Trout” with Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard to raise funds for coldwater habitat conservation.

    Tam Wai Ping, Lukas is the chairman and one of the founders of Art Map. He works as an independent curator and serves as an Associate Professor in the Department of Fine Arts in Chinese University of Hong Kong.Tam is notable for his use of various media, including photography, installation and environmental art. In face with the hardships of reality, Tam has been exploring the relationship between “Individual and Land” that attempts an insight into history and modern life, leading to the investigation of “Modernity” in Asian values. The recent interestlooks at the relationships between “Text”, “Object” and “Image”, it re-evaluates how art can serve as a cognitive experience.

    Billy Hau is a terrestrial ecologist and a conservationist with a PhD on forest ecology from The University of Hong Kong (HKU). He is currently the Principal Lecturer of School of Biological Sciences and Programme Director, MSc in Environmental Management at HKU. His research focus is ecological restoration, especially for terrestrial habitats in degraded tropical East Asia. As the Vice-Chairman of the Conservancy Association, a member of the Conservation Advisory Committee of WWF HK and an honorable member of Ecology and Biodiversity Society SS, HKUSU, Dr Hau is devoted to promoting biodiversity conservation to various sectors in society.

    Joyce Hei-ting Wong is a Curator at Asia Society Hong Kong Center. She holds a BA from the University of Hong Kong, double majoring in English Literature and Fine Art (2015). Exhibitions she has worked on include Life is Only One: Yoshitomo Nara (2015); Bat Cave: Treasures of the Day and Creatures of the Night (2015), Shen Wei: Dance Strokes (2016), Shahzia Sikander: Apparatus of Power (2016), Roaring Guardians: The Mari- Cha Lion with Asian Traditional and Contemporary Art (2017), Breathing Space: Contemporary Art from Hong Kong (2017). Most recently, she assisted the inauguration of ASHK’s 20th Century Chinese Female Artist Series with Painting Her Way: The Ink Art of Fang Zhaoling (2017) curated by Kuiyi Shen and Julia F. Andrews, the first installment preceding Song of Spring: Pan Yu-Lin in Paris. (Moderator)

    Carroll teacher earns top honor at Garrett art show

    GARRETT — Scott Kilmer’s depiction of a lake in western Indiana took first place in the 11th annual Members Show at the Garrett Museum of Art.

    Kilmer’s painting, “Isolation,” depicts the serenity of the lake he first captured in a photograph while at Lake Shakamak State Park. This was Kilmer’s first venture in oil painting. The Carroll High School art teacher is no stranger to the local show, having won the top award twice earlier for his water color paintings. He lives in Huntertown. Kilmer’s angling buddies joined him for the opening reception Friday night.

    Professor John Motz with the Purdue Fort Wayne Department of Vision and Communication Design judged the show’s 80 entries earlier in the week. Some 40 artists entered works in a variety of media including oil, acrylic and watercolor paintings, sculpture, ceramics, printmaking, photography, drawing and mixed media, among others.

    The show, which brings the arts to life with 2-D and 3-D art submitted by members of the regional art community, will run through April 14.

    A commissioned clock made from a damaged Tesla Model S wheel by Ron Ostlund Jr. of Fort Wayne was one of three Director’s Award winners. The 3-D artwork is a mix of wood and metal.

    “The Tesla emblem called on many of the skill’s I’ve acquired over nine years as a jewelry designer, from using the same reclaimed aluminum I use for earrings to make templates to the handmade brass rivets,” Ostlund wrote for his artist statement. The piece is on loan from Omar Restrepo.

    Elly Tullis captured the Tri Kappa Award for her oversized oil painting of a panther. It is part her series of large cat paintings.

    Brenda Fishbaugh’s black-and-white photograph of a winding metal staircase at the Rookery Building in downtown Chicago captured the Garrett Clipper/KPC Media Award.

    Fishbaugh, of Fort Wayne, said she had to take the snap quickly during a tour in the historic 19th century building on LaSalle Street last summer. The interior features updates by Frank Lloyd Wright in the early 1900s, including the ornate staircase railings that were the subject of her photo. She has been a member of the museum since it opened.

    She noted the staircase in Chicago was Wright’s very first project out of architecture school, and he stayed within the style of the building. Fishbaugh closely cropped the photo with camera for the most part, staying very close to the subject, having only a couple moments as many other visitors wanted to take photos, as well.  Her other photo entry was a tiger in a reserve in the western United States.

    New member Lanna Pendleton Hall of Edon, Ohio, was among the Director’s Award winners. Her oil painting of pending spring showers was from a photo taken near her neighbor’s home along C.R. 6 in Montpelier, Ohio, last spring. It captures cloud formations, a subject that is now her specialty. Hall added a barn for interest along with the Lesmet homestead. While not a meteorologist, she has become well-versed on various clouds. She added vertical lines for interest in the painting. This is her first exhibit in Garrett, but has shown her work in Toledo, Ohio, and was chosen to be member of the prestigious Athena Art Society, formed in 1903.

    Before announcing winners, museum director Jim Gabbard thanked artists and patrons and shared the mission of the museum that offers kids’ camps, student exhibits, classes for seniors and art camp for men and women suffering from addictions at no charge. He told artists the judge was “flabbergasted” when choosing the winners.

    Museum hours are Friday 5-8 p.m., Saturday 4-7 p.m. and Sunday 1-4 p.m. and by appointment. For more information, people may call 704-5400, visit the website at garrettmuseumofart.org or the museum pages on Facebook and Instagram.

    Get ‘Fully Engaged’ at Paradise City Arts Festival in Marlborough March 22-24

    MARLBOROUGH – “The Modern Art of Tying the Knot” is the topic of a special exhibit at this season’s Paradise City Arts Festival March 22-24 at the Best Western Royal Plaza Trade Center in Marlborough.

    Founding Director Linda Post comes up with an imaginative theme for the festivals, held twice yearly in Marlborough and Northampton. This time around, the theme is all about the symbols associated with marriage: the engagement and wedding rings – enduring symbols of love – the wedding dress, and other accoutrements, from favors to china, cakes, centerpieces, festive outfits, romantic art and photography, and the wedding feast all play important roles in the journey. Be sure to stop by this special exhibit in the “Chapel of Love” in the Sculpture Cafe at Paradise City Arts Festival.

    “The wedding ceremony, whether a simple civil ceremony, magnificently orchestrated affair, or exotic destination wedding becomes an opportunity to express commitment and love,” said Linda Post in a press release. “Fine arts and crafts can play an important role in making the experience ven more special. Hand-blown champagne flutes to toast the couple, gleaming silver knives to cut the cake, festive outfits for dance the night away, unique table favors, stunning vases for floral centerpieces, and romantic photography all contribute to the festivities – and the memories. For the participants, what better way to say “I love you” to the happy couple than with something artfully exquisite for their new home that they will cherish forever.

    Paradise City, “Fairs of Fine and Functional Art,” features 175 juried artists from 25 states who exhibit original works in art glass, ceramics, painting, decorative fiber, fine furniture, jewelry, leather, metal, mixed media, photography, large-scale sculpture, wearable art and wood.

    “We are thrilled to be celebrating our 25th year of producing and directing the Paradise City Arts Festivals,” said Director Geoffrey Post, in a release. “With about 40 new exhibitors participating this spring, there are fresh discoveries everywhere. And every booth is a tiny gallery or boutique, each one carefully constructed with an artist’s eye and a maker’s hand.”

    Paradise City Arts Festival

    WHEN: March 22-24. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday; 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday

    WHERE: Best Western Royal Plaza Hotel & Trade Center, 181 Boston Post Road West (Rte. 20), Marlborough

    ADMISSION: $14 adults; $12 senior 65+; $8 students; $16 weekend pass; free for children under 12. Free parking, handicapped accessible

    INFO: www.paradisecityarts.com; 800-511-9725

    The Fujifilm GFX 50R Created These Gorgeous Black and White Portraits

    If you’re considering getting the Fujifilm GFX 50R for portrait work, we think you won’t be disappointed.

    Whatever your photography genre of choice, we’re sure you’re curious if the rangefinder style Fujifilm GFX 50R would be a great tool to elevate your art and craft with. Today, we bring an answer to all you portrait and fashion photographers out there. Looking at this set by Chennai-based fashion photographer Bhagathkumar Bhagavathi, we think it’s a resounding yes. Bhagavathi decided to do his first shoot with the Fujifilm GFX 50R in classy and elegant black and white, which is a fine choice given that it’s a popular style for fine art portrait photography. In his collection of shots, we see him playing around with several elements: contrasts, shadow and light play, textures, and bokeh.

    If moody black and white portraits are your thing, you definitely have a fine example here. With creamy whites, punchy blacks, and clear details, looks like Fujifilm is delivering on its promise of ultimate picture quality, not only for daily snaps and street photography, but also for creative portrait work.

    Fujifilm has in fact been recommending their GFX cameras for those who are looking for a larger system with higher resolution. If you’re looking into print-worthy portraits and fashion editorials, this camera might just be the one you need. If you’re also curious about how the Fujifilm GFX 50R performs in a variety of shooting conditions, its ease of use, or even its build quality, we highly recommend checking out our test run with it!

    We’re not entirely sure, but looks like these first photos was a prelude to Bhagavathi’s even more stunning portrait set called Mesmerism. Go ahead and check that out if you’re in the mood for more dramatic fashion portraits in monochrome. Meanwhile, if you’re curious about the rest of his projects, his Behance portfolio and website has plenty of that.

    All photos by Bhagathkumar Bhagavathi. Used with Creative Commons permission.

    Whats the Best Software for Artists to Digital Painting?

    Many years ago the only options for digital painting I had were MS Paint, Adobe Photoshop and Corel Painter. Fast forward to 2018 and there is a bewildering choice of software and tablets.

    These days getting into digital painting is easier and more affordable.

    When I started out, prices of digital painting software were much more expensive, the only decent pressure sensitive drawing tablets available were by Wacom ( but now I changed to some affordable alternatives ) and there was no where near the amount of training support available. I will give a general overview of the software available. So you should pick the right software for your needs and preferences.

    Graphic tablets can be split into two categories: those that have a screen (like the XP-Pen Artist Line ) and those that don’t (like the XP-Pen DECO Type). Almost any professional graphics software will work for XP-Pen tablets, XP-Pen Was a professional pressure sensitive Graphics Tablet manufacturer on the digitizer tablet market. they provide affordable Art Tablet fot Digital Artists , the driver is powerful and update quickly .

    Here is the portrait I made with XP-Pen Artist 22E Pro Tablet Monitor.

    I’ll be mentioning software which tries to emulate natural artistic media but with digital painting you can pretty much get any effect you want.

    Adobe Photoshop

    Adobe Photoshop is well known as the industry standard of photo editing software. Photoshop is a popular and very versatile program specializes in photomanipulation that can be used for photo-manipulation, compositing, digital painting and illustration and even print and web design. all that was because it have a really good brush engine . to be honest it’s brush engine is better than krita’s in some places .

    The term industry standard has no weight in why I choose which software to paint with though, I like to keep open minded and try software based on the features it offers. For this reason I will mention software that is not as well known. I’ll also list some mobile software options I’ve heard of as they are increasing in popularity. It’s up to you to do further research for what will work for you and there are always more options if you dig deep enough.

    Open Source and free options

    The Gimp
    Speedy Painter
    Fire Alpaca
    Medibang Paint
    Adobe Photoshop Sketch (mobile)
    Tayasui Sketches (mobile)

    Paid options

    Here is a list of affordable software from cheapest to highest price:

    Procreate (ipad)

    Infinite Painter (mobile)
    Paintstorm Studio
    Autodesk Sketchbook
    PD Artist
    Jugi Paint
    Artweaver 6
    Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo
    Black Ink
    ArtRage 5
    Rebelle 2
    Clipstudio Paint
    Adobe CC
    Corel Painter (current version Painter 2018)

    My Thoughts

    Over the years I’ve tried Paintstorm Studio, Mischief, Artweaver, Affinity Designer, Black Ink, Expresii, ArtRage, Rebelle, Clipstudio Paint, Krita, Affinity Photo, PaintTool SAI, Sketchbook Pro, Adobe CC and Corel Painter. Here are my thoughts on them so far.

    Paintstorm Studio

    Paintstorm Studio is created for professional digital painting. And a major role in this program play the brushes. We did our best so that you can easily and quickly .

    Paintstorm Studio is a recent addition to my collection and I’m impressed by the brush engine. It is easy to use and nice to paint with.Of course, it may be be missing some tools and filters for image processing, and it has little drawbacks. Paintstorm, though, is all about brush drawing and they tried to make it the maximum quality. Besides, Paintstorm studio has several unique features you won’t find anywhere else.


    The free version of Artweaver is something I tried years ago and I thought it was ok. Get creative with this impressive paint tool which boasts support for Photoshop files. It has brushes like Photoshop and blendy brushes like Corel Painter. The only reason I haven’t used it is because I’ve already got Photoshop and Corel Painter. The interface is a mix of Photoshop and Painter and it has similar brushes.

    When choosing a graphics package it is important to select the right tool for the job. Opt for too basic a program and you may find that you do not have access to all of the tools you need, while opting for a program which is more advanced can mean a steep learning curve and great expense. Artweaver positions itself neatly between the two, being both powerful and instantly accessible for users of all levels of ability.

    Full support for layers and a wide variety of brushes, along with a range of effects filters, means that Artweaver provides you with everything you need to get started on creative ventures. Brushes are highly configurable so they can be tailored to very specific tasks while support for transparency and the Photoshop PSD format means that it is not only possible to generate very impressive results, it is also possible to work with files that have been created in other programs.

    A graphics tablet can be used with Artweaver to allow for greater control over the tools provided, and completed projects can be saved in a variety of popular formats. Upgrading to the paid for Plus version of the program adds support for Photoshop plugins, and the saving and playback of onscreen events — this can be used to demonstrate techniques to others. With the Artweaver Plus, large documents can be created and a great degree of control over brushes is available.

    Affinity Designer

    Affinity Designer is good for vector graphic creation and painting. It can mix both raster and vector artwork together which is interesting. There is free online support and tutorials which are great for beginners . It’s a replacement for Illustrator.I was so happy when I found Designer. For me, Designer is way easier to draw with and manipulate drawings than Illustrator. The developers at Serif (the makers of Affinity Designer) are great. You can freely communicate with them on their forum asking questions, making requests, etc.

    Black Ink

    Black Ink is a digital painting software that uses your computer’s rendering hardware to provide a perfectly responsive experience no matter your picture’s size .

    Black Ink impressed me with weird procedural brushes but I found it too technical for my general use. It’s great for someone who is already confident with digital art but I wouldn’t recommend it for beginners.

    Make, download, or use the provided brushes to make amazing speed-sensitive designs. People with no talent can make interesting paintings in seconds, while those with skill can produce amazing picasso-esq poitraits in minutes. Black Ink has become my favorite drawing/painting application and I do recommend it, but you should be aware of some of its limitations before you decide if it’s right for you.

    The second limitation is that the selection of brushes is very limited and not entirely satisfactory. While the software is certainly able to handle them, it contains no traditional brush/knife/spatula effects, giving you instead a number of flashy, but not very useful “computery” ones.

    The third limitation is that there are no geometric tools whatsoever: no lines, circles, arcs, rectangles, spline curves, etc. Their addition would make the program enormously more useful for certain types of illustrations, especially if they were given parametrizable “organic” effects (like random variations) in addition to being rendered with the current brush.

    Also, keep in mind that you will need a drawing tablet and a pressure-sensitive stylus to get any decent results. Mice and track pads just won’t cut it. This is true of all paint programs, but not everyone will think about it until they’ve tried and struggled with an inadequate input tool. I’m using it with a 10″x5.63″ medium-sized XP-Pen DECO 02 sketch tablet and it works great. You might consider upgrading to a stylus with tilt sensors because some brushes are tilt-sensitive and you’ll get even better, richer results. Because Black Ink works best on large drawings, I recommend a large writing surface as well, though that’s largely a matter of personal taste; I prefer to have room to move my arm rather than just my wrist.

    But even with these limitations, what it does, it does very well. I am particularly in love with its layering feature. In addition to letting you stack backgrounds, foregrounds, and various intermediate slides, it’s also great for experimenting on one layer without damaging parts that you want to keep. Which brings up the fact that Black Ink’s undo feature works very well. This seems like a trivial observation, but I’ve used programs that make you want to throw the computer out the window either because they undo too much at once or they can’t undo enough.

    So I certainly recommend this program to anyone who wants a pleasant sketching/drawing/painting program, but I also recommend to Bleank to add more conventional brushes (and why not some more unconventional ones, too?) and a small panoply of geometric tools to make this a more complete and satisfying product.

    The first limitation is that it requires a powerful graphics card to operate. Don’t expect to run this on your laptop, much less your Surface tablet. The lag will make it unusable and some brushes won’t even render. If you’re looking for something to take with you so you can paint under a tree by the lake, thi


    Expresii is not an ordinary paint app but one packed with innovations.
    A few points to highlight:

    3D brush done right. You can really create so much variations by simply wielding the brush like in real life.
    Physics-based fluid sim. When other commercial paint apps claim to have ‘real’ watercolor, just compare with this one and decide which one feels more natural.
    Hybrid vector-raster representation solving the low-res problem. Low-res digital painting are unsuitable for printouts or even viewing on a larger screen, but not for this one!

    Expresii is one of a kind for it’s realistic Eastern watercolour painting brush engine. Artwork can be exported as PSD files. This software is very specialised, but if you are familiar with digital painting it is worth a go.


    A simple but lovely natural media painting and sketching program. Art oriented, but capable of loading/saving photoshop files. A very cheap alternative to Painter,

    ArtRage is a painting and illustration tool for various platforms and is developed by AmbientDesign Ltd. It is suited for beginner as well as experienced artists and the main features include painting symmetry,natural painting tools,special effect tools like cloner,gloop pen etc,sticker sprays,tracing images,creating scraps and views etc.The latest version ArtRage4 supports the Wacom stylus pen and adjusts the image by using Pressure,Tilt, Airbrush Wheel and Barrel Rotation of the stylus pen. It runs both on Windows and Mac OS.

    it was excellent, lower-priced digital art software which replicate real-world media and painting techniques. Artrage was one of the first art programs to offer naturalistic squidgy paint blending, which is what made me settle on Artrage as my main software. Artrage features some interesting lighting effects which allows for metallic textures and glitter. Apart from that, Artrage has a simple, intuitive interface which lets you get straight to art without a huge software learning curve a la Photoshop. Advanced settings are behind the scenes, which means you might not ever find them, to be honest. Artrage was ahead of its time for a while. At $79, Artrage has always punched above its weight. I won’t hear a bad word about it.

    If your computer is more than a few years old it won’t cope with Rebelle 3, in which case go with Artrage (which will run slowly, but it does run).

    ArtRage 5 is the best I’ve tried for realistic digital oil painting and the interface is easy to learn. The way the paint seems to react to the canvas texture is the best out of all the software I’ve tried so far.

    Rebelle 2

    Rebelle 2 is another watercolour painting software and is easy to use. Editing options are limited but formats can be exported for use in other programs. Rebelle 2 lets you create realistic watercolor, acrylic and dry media artwork, using real-world color blending, wet diffusion, and drying!.

    For anyone more accustomed to working with real pencils, pens, paintbrushes and paint, Rebelle 2 was the most naturally intuitive user experience and the results went way beyond my expectations. Photoshop-like options are more limited than some of the other apps, but nothing can compare to how realistic Rebelle 2 feels to work with and looks when you’re done.

    Painting in Rebelle is fun, but I would suggest using it along side something like Photoshop or Krita to give more editing options.

    Clip studio Paint

    Clipstudio Paint is a good all round alternative to Photoshop or Corel Painter and the inking brushes are fantastic. It also has animation tools.Clip Studio Paint, previously Manga Studio or ComicStudio in Japan, is a family of software applications for Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows used for the digital creation .

    I’ve tried PS, Mediabang, Sai and Gimp and nothing has impressed me as much as CSP. In my opinion, CSP is better for drawing while PS is better for editing photos but I know others who prefer drawing in Photoshop.

    CSP has all the tools you could need for drawing, it’s a very extensive drawing software compared to other ones out there. CSP also has a stabilization setting for your brushes as well as a blending tool which my version of PS lacks (not sure if the newer subscription-based version has them though) however CSP lacks the liquify tool that PS has, it’s really the only feature I miss from PS. The way you can organize your brushes in CSP blows photoshop and the other drawing programs I’ve tried out of the water. I also find CSP to be more user-friendly but keep in mind that’s also because PS has a crazy amount of features, most of them you won’t need for digital art.

    If you like comic and manga there are really awesome features for it in CSP to speed up your workflow as the program was intended for manga/comic work, the original brushes the program comes with are therefore meant for a more “comic” style of drawing which not everyone’s cup of tea. However the assets store (most things are free to download there) that CSP comes with lets you download so many different brushes that more realistic drawing and painting is no problem, I’ve drawn several real-life portraits in CSP using downloaded custom brushes that mimic real pencils. Another pro to CSP is that it’s only a one-time payment (besides on the Ipad) and then the program is yours for life whereas PS now requires you to pay a monthly fee. I’ve also noticed that the touch functions work much better on my Cintiq in CSP than in PS where it’s quite laggy, then again I’m using an older version of PS and the latest version of CSP.

    This is just my individual opinion though, I’m by no means an expert at either program nor am I saying that CSP is necessarily a better program than PS, both are good softwares, it comes down to personal preference which one you like the most. Thankfully both PS and CSP have free trials so you can try out them both for yourself.


    Krita is a complete creative sketching and painting application with advanced, commercial quality features. It’s free, open-source . I used Krita last year and really liked it. I started using it more than Corel Painter because it has nice brushes and the layer support is much better. The latest version of Krita is a big improvement so far and now works with my XP-Pen Artist 22E Pro tablet Monitor (with the newest XP-Pen driver).

    Krita has a LOT of realistic brushes, layers, vector shapes, the ability to rotate and mirror the canvas to spot errors… It has allowed me to work in layers, apply filters, use brushes and use colors.

    I really like that it supports different formats such as RAW, PSD, PNG, JPEG and BMP, it is also possible to export the files in a large number of formats.

    Krita has brushes for all tastes, and has a variety of filters and effects. allows easy color management ,It has an easy-to-use interface, so that our paintings are amazing

    If you need a cheaper alternative for just digital painting, Krita is the program for you! Krita is a powerful tool for editing and designing images, it’s free and with enough potential to create quality images.

    The only important tools that Krita does not have is Clone with perspective.This is a software which feels like a lite Photoshop version for painters. Especially with the new update, promising new features can be found.

    Adobe CC

    Adobe CC has a solid offering of apps, my favorites being: XD, Photoshop, Illustrator, Audition, After Effects, and Acrobat.Adobe CC allows me to be affective at my work and provide a wide range of services.

    I tried the Adobe CC last year but I still have Photoshop CS3 so I had no reason to upgrade and the subscription model puts me off.

    Corel Painter

    Corel Painter is one of the leading software for painting and illustration and is developed by Corel corporation . The most interesting feature in latest version Corel Painter 3 is the RealBristle™ technology which uses the angle and the pressure of the stylus pen for controlling the color and effects of the image. The other features are Brush Search engine,Stroke preview,Jitter brushes,Advanced Brush Controls,Brush tracking,Cloning workflow,transforming multiple layers at a time,Memory optimization,Flow Maps,Custom palettes,Customizable surface texturing etc . It runs on both Windows and Mac OS. It also has other softwares like CorelDraw,PaintShop,PhotoImpact etc.

    Photoshop is not totally the industry standard for painting. Corel has a good reputation too. I know even Feng Zhu uses it.

    Corel is more traditional and will have alot effect photoshop has, although a very poor selection tools set.

    AD and AP share the same painting engine, but for “pure” artistry mood AP offers something more.

    AP features the Colour Mixing Brush which offers different colour blending (RGB/RYB and CMYK models) and the Liquify Persona that is a terrific booster for digital painters.

    Bristle and Watercolour models of Painter are almost “unbiased”: this means that there is a physics model behind pigment/media/canvas interactions so results are “almost” real.

    Anyway the cons are:

    1) Speed

    You need a super Mac to deal with pro-grade resolutions, and computations are heavy. This is one of the reasons why Painter cannot be defined a rock-solid software to rely on totally…

    Do you want to paint on a 8000px canvas with the Real Bristle and Watercolours? Only 16GB od RAM and 2 cores? Pray… :

    2) Complexity

    Watercolour technique is probably the most complex to master, and this is the reason why Painter still offers the Digital Watercolour model aside the Real Watercolour one…

    My experience tells me that painters are inclined to an analog approach, so unbiased models as ArtRage/Painter/FreshPaint fit best their user experience.

    Illustrators and digital artists are more frequently in a rush, so do prefer “digital” approaches as the models offered by Affinity, Photoshop, MangaStudio, Sketchbook.

    In this second scenario an “analog looking” tool is complex to achieve, but not impossible.

    But in any rate, you can use anything you want to. No one cares as long as they have the files to work with or the final image is uploaded. You can use either, or both. If you just fear it, try it out. ALl of them have some sort of free trials.

    I’ve used Corel Painter less and less in favor of Photoshop and other programs. There seems to be a paid update every year which is far too expensive for me to maintain and I don’t need more features than it already has. If anything I would like fewer features, more stability and no internal advert nags. Other than that it’s a great program and still has gorgeous and customisable brushes. I guess if you want to really simulate traditional medium in a computer, this might be it but for more quick stuff, i’d prefer other software. I find the layer system very frustrating but it is fine if you generally paint on the canvas layer. The version I use is the 2016 release. Layers may have been improved in future editions. What I do to overcome the layer problem is paint in Corel Painter on the Canvas layer only. I then go into Photoshop or Krita with the image if I need to do further work on other layers and editing.

    Affinity Photo

    I am trying Affinity Photo because the features rival Photoshop for editing. It supports the more recent file types and I want to try 360 Panoramic painting. I’ve tried out several brushes and they are great to paint with. There is also a mixer brush option for doing blendy painting techniques. So far it looks very promising.

    There are some features that Affinity offers that are, in my opinion, better than what Photoshop offers. The video tutorials are great — short enough that they aren’t overwhelming, but comprehensive enough that you get to understand how things work. Once you are familiar with the layout and what does what, it is easy enough to translate Photoshop and Elements tutorials to Affinity.

    PaintTool SAI

    PaintTool SAI is high quality and lightweight painting software, fully digitizer support, amazing anti-aliased paintings, provide easy and stable operation.

    My favorite software, because the program file itself is super small, only 5MB, so it loads up very fast. It has all the basic tools you need to create art, so it is super simple to use. The stroke engine is just awesome, when you draw curves, it is just smooth, no jagged lines or anything. Also you can mix colors very nicely. The vector function is also very cool, because after you are done tracing and have the lines, you can go in and add line weight where you like it. The interface is easy and you get used to it very quickly. However, it doesn’t have many blend modes and my version also doesn’t allow to use text. For freeform drawings and paintings, this is it for me.

    I can definitely recommend it. Said is lighter and less complicated than Photoshop, so although it may not be able to do everything Photoshop can do, its also easier to navigate and use.

    Sai is really handy for line art, I always had trouble with it in Photoshop, but I’m much better with it in Sai, though it may just be because I’m used to it. One thing that Sai has that Photoshop doesn’t is the ability to rotate the canvas to any angle at anytime. This has been a GODSEND for me, it makes it a lot easier to get precision lines down, ect.

    Long story short, it’s like Photoshop cut down and streamlined for drawing in painting. Easy to use and still capable of making great things!

    Sketchbook Pro

    Sketchbook pro is a product of the company Autodesk Inc and is a professional painting software for the artists. It has got more than 100 illustration tools which can be customized to our needs. It also has other features like Vibrant colors and Copic® Color System,Annotate and iterate quickly with layers etc. It runs on both Windows and Mac OS.Both personal and business version is available for this software.

    I recently stumbled across this and i like it. also great for quick sketches. The pencil feels very similar to the pen in Paint Tool Sai, that’s great. The marker tool is nice, it behaves like real markers and the airbrush is smooth. I’d use it for marker sketches.

    Some features to look for in digital painting software :

    A crucial rule for painting software is it should run well on your operating system and work with your choice of tablet.

    Stability is important. Painting can take a long time to do and file sizes can get large, you don’t want to lose hours of work with crashes or bugs. How far it is in development is also a factor to consider.

    The painting engine and what you can do with the brushes as well as photo editing capabilities are factors. Some of the software I’ve mentioned does not have photo editing features. Because of this file compatibility and PSD support is important. Being able to save and export your painting in the top supported formats is essential.

    The interface is a consideration as well. The main questions I ask are is it easy to understand, does it look nice and can I customise it? If the interface is hard to use or looks old fashioned it puts me off no matter how good the program might be.

    Community, documentation and training support available are also vital to consider as a beginner.

    Here is another Art Work I made by Phhotoshop CC


    These software’s have their pros and cons, it depends what you want to achieve and what your budget is. Krita is great for a free all round option and it also has 2D animation tools.

    For 2.5D painting and audio brushes you can use Corel Painter, but PD Artist also has these features.

    For nice oil painting look at ArtRage and Paintstorm Studio. For realistic watercolour Rebelle and Expresii are both worth a look.

    Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo look promising for cheaper and non-subscription alternatives to Adobe CC.

    The more expensive software options are the Adobe Creative Cloud and Corel Painter. This reflects their brand equity and amount of features. I started with Corel Painter around 2012 and used it for years. I still use it from time to time. It is an impressive program for digital painting. However, Corel Painter has a high price and steep learning curve. If you can afford it I would recommend Photoshop over Corel Painter to learn the basics with. Clipstudio Paint is a great cheaper alternative to both when it’s on sale. I cannot fault Krita over these options for continuous improvement, community support and price (free).

    My recommendation for beginners to digital painting is Krita because it has digital painting tools, editing tools, great community support, lots of online tutorials and it is free Open Source. It works with lots of tablets and its cross platform for Windows, Linux and Mac.

    I hope this article has been useful to you for discussing some options available for digital painting. I advise you look at the software’s websites and weigh up the options for yourself depending on what you need.