Reduction Lino Cut Class with Lino Lenny

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Bill and I decided to do something completely different last weekend, we went out to the Leighton Art Centre south of Calgary and learned the basics of reduction lino cut printmaking from Lenny Lane, otherwise known as Lino Lenny. It was a busy two days, each of the budding artists brought designs we wanted to transfer to the lino block. With Lenny’s great instruction, and encouragement, he guided us  through the process step by step to our final images.

final images; Reduction Lino Cut Printmaking; Leighton Art Centre

The Leighton Art Centre is just south of Calgary, and it is a wonderful place to visit, the house if now a gallery featuring local artists and printmakers. They have various workshops if you are interested in expanding or exploring your artistic skills.

Lino Lenny is a patient instructor as well as a knowledgeable and talented printmaker, I recommend you check out his webpage to fully appreciate the art printmaking

 

 

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Ode to the “The Vucciria”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis painting is called “The Vucciria” and is by Renato Guttuso, is large (300 cm x 300 cm) painted in 1974 while he was living in Lombardy. I have read that he ordered food to be shipped by air to him from Palermo, including a side of beef in order to paint food from life!

His work is a visual representation of the feelings I had while exploring the local markets a maze of food,  smells, sights, sounds and people, and an inspiration for my images.

 

The term Vucciria derives from the French word boucherie, or butcher shop, but in Sicily the meaning encompasses noise, confusion, chaos, reflecting the atmosphere that dwells along the streets of the market. Sicilians say “It was a vucciria” the way we in English say “It was bedlam” or “It was a madhouse”.

Lucky for Bill and I there are several street markets in Palermo, as old as the Vucciria, which are a frenzied mass of people buying fruits, vegetables and fish and meat, men on motorbikes piled high squeezing through the crowds delivering more merchandise to the stalls, and men shouting out to sell their wares. We returned to the markets many times to shop for local food and enjoy the vucciria!

 

Fremantle

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We have had a wonderful few days wandering the streets Fremantle Australia. We  visited the Art Center and learned a little about the aboriginal art. Of course we have been  enjoying the different restaurants and cafe’s, seeing the public art while we wandered the streets, and we have taken time to watching the sunset on the beach.

It has been a great way to recover from the about 28 hours in transit from our home in Calgary to Freemantle!

Today we are off to Melbourne for a few day before heading to Margaret River.

Aspen Trees and Orange Sculpture in the Calgary Olympic Plaza

Aspen and orange sculpture_Calgary Olympic Plaza; copyright jmeyersforeman 2015
Aspen and orange sculpture_Calgary Olympic Plaza; copyright jmeyersforeman 2015

I received an email this week ,in it a reminder that Calgary is a beautiful city, I believe that to be true. But there are day when i have trouble finding that beauty, and I realize we can only really appreciate the beauty of our surroundings if we are prepared to see it.

Along the north east corner of Olympic plaza you will find a small planting of aspen trees, long prairie grasses and a group of bright orange steel poles. I know there will be some who will wonder how large steel poles that are painted orange and planted in the ground could possible be considered art.  I think the installation is beautiful, it reminds me of those bright rays of sun shining through the trees at sunrise.

I hope you find some beauty in your day today.

The Statue of David; Florence Italy

Seeing David; copyright jmeyersforeman 2014
Seeing David; copyright jmeyersforeman 2014 

Looking back through the many photos taken over the last year, and found this image of the Statue of David.

Standing inthe Piazza della Signoria, a replica of the statue of David, one of the most recognized works of Renaissane art. The Piazza is filled with visitors, all snapping away with their cameras,  getting photos of the buildings, the different scuptures around the square and of course themselves and their friends.

As a tourist and visitor I want to document our time in a city, and the sights that we visit, but I also want to find a creative way to photograph the scene that is photographed hundrends of times a day!  The statue of David created by Michelangelo in the early 1500’s and became a symbol of strength and beauty. The shadow shows the pose and translates those qualities without having to see all the statue.  I used the square format to remove any distractions from the frame.

Many people I know purchase postcards, because they will “never get a picture that pretty” themselves. My great aunt use to purchase slides that were sold at all the tourist shop, many many years ago as a memory of where she had been and what she had seen. I remember looking at those slides when I was a little girl, maybe she planted that seed to travel and take photos!

When you travel, do you take photos that tells a story about where we you were?

Creative Seat in Malaga Spain

Public Art; sitting around the streets of Malaga; copyright jmeyersforeman 2015
Public Art; sitting around the streets of Malaga; copyright jmeyersforeman 2015 

Just a quick photo of the public art “sitting” around on the streets of Malaga Spain. I haven’t been able to find out who the artist is, but I thought it was a wonderful. The two characters look like they are working so hard to hold up the seat and there is no one sitting on it! It would be wonderful if I could find a little girl in a ballerina outfit to “dance” on the bench. Oh what a wonderful image that would be.  Maybe another day!?

Watching the crowds go by

Prague Hungary; watching the crowds go by; copyright jmeyersforeman
Prague Hungary; watching the crowds go by; copyright jmeyersforeman

Bill in Budapest, watching the crowds to by. I like how the golden leaves are sprinkled around like confetti.

According to the metadata this image was taken on November 10, 2014, less than 2 months ago. To be honest it feels like it has been ages since we were in Budapest. We are going to stop travelling, for a while, we have booked a small apartment in Malaga Spain and we are looking forward to being in one place for more than a few days. There will be time to watch people, and relax in the sunshine.

I do have plans for a couple of projects but they will have more to do with photography than with travelling, but all those travel photos will continue to show up as I experiment with different processing styles.  I do want to do more after-before blogs, I learned a lot from taking notes and writing detailed posts of how some of the images are processed. The group is also going to have a challenge once a month. One image submitted by a member of the group is processed by everyone. We did this as a group a couple of months ago, it is amazing to see the all the different results, you can read more about this group challenge on Stacy’s Blog.

Kim Klassen has a Be-Still 52 course, Kim calls this a year of still life inspiration. I have followed Kim’s blog for sometime, she uses textures in both Lightroom and Photoshop, I have use some textures with some photos, but I was time to make a commitment to a still life a week as part of my learning this year.

One more thing, I have a new flash, since it is the only light I am carrying in my small bag of camera equipment I hope to spend a little more time exploring the range of possibilities. The Canon Learning Center has a series of tutorials, one is actually called “beyond the instruction manual” I can’t say I have read the entire manual, but I do know where it is, and I have referred to it once or twice! Definitely a place where more learning would be fun and of value.

2014 was about exploring, cities, festivals, art, and so much more. I explored photography techniques like HDR, and night photography, incorporating Lightroom into my process, and I have been exploring the Creative Cloud with all it has to offer. I feel there is still so much to learn. 2014 it was about being open to seeing, and I want to continue with that but I want 2015 to have a little more intention, and a little more structure as I explore gaps in my skills.

I read this quote recently “Go and make interesting mistakes, make amazing mistakes, make glorious and fantastic mistakes. Break rules. Leave the world more interesting for your being here.” – Neil Gaiman. I will go forth and make interesting, fantastic, glorious mistakes as I learn, and I hope to tell you about a few of them.

What things are you looking forward to in 2015?

Stradel Museum, Frankfurt Germany

No we haven’t headed back to Germany! it has been a very busy few days strolling the streets of Paris, seeing the sights and enjoying Christmas, no time for processing images or writing blog posts, so I thought I would show you the images taken during our visit to the Stradel Museum.

We almost always pick up the audio guide for the museum, learn as we look! The Currator has done a wonderful job moving us through time and place. through history and the museum.  Placing the statues with the painting, interweaving the two mediums and telling stories that provide just enought historical and artistic details to entertain as well as educate.

Ravenna Italy; Art and Architecture

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforeman
Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforeman

We took a short train ride from Bologna to visit Ravenna, during our day we managed to see 4 of the 8 UNESCO designated sites in the city. Pictured above is the Basilica Di S. Vitale, described in our guidebook as “The most glorious example of Byzantine art int he West”  Instead of the traditional three naves of Gothic architecture it is octagonal in shape with a central dome supported by eight columns and arches.

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem
Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem
Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem
Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem

Not far from there the Neonian Baptistery, the oldest of Ravenna’s ancient monuments, while it is a simple octagonal building, built with the short flat brick a traditional feature of the architecture in Northern Italy. The mosaic art were made in mid 5th century.

In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic "Crhistening of Jesus
In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic “Christening of Jesus

A closer view of the centre art piece

In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic "Crhistening of Jesus
In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic “Christening of Jesus 

We also went to see the Basilica Saint Apollinare Nuovo, Ravenna Italy, first built-in the mid 5th century, the interior has been modified several times. The ceiling was last modified in the 17th century.

Basilica Saint Apollinare Nuovo
Basilica Saint Apollinare Nuovo, Ravenna Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman 

some of the detailed mosaic work of the Basilica Saint Apollinaire Nuovo.

 

The Magi_Basilica of S. Apollinairs Nuovo
The Magi_Basilica of S. Apollinairs Nuovo 

The mosaics are frescos are amazing, the photos hardly do them justice! We only had one day in Ravenna, it would be quite easy to spend 3 or 4 days enjoying the art and architecture, as well as the cafes and street life.

Now we are off to Florence for a few days!

 

Murals and Public Art; Zaragoza Spain

IMG_4225 IMG_4224 IMG_4222

murals and public art; Zaragoza Spain
murals and public art; Zaragoza Spain 

We have been in Zaragoza Spain for a couple of days wandering the streets and checking out the sites.

It seems that in manyof the cities of Spain that we have visited we have found walls and shutters painted, sometimes to identify a  business or area of the city. You will recall the images of Madrid and of the Camino. Zaragoza is no exception, the area of  El Tubo, in the old part of town, is where we found the painted murals, and where, we also found more tapa bars per square block than any other city we have been in.

It does seem that the Spanish people are not inclined to dull or boring brick walls, and it is wonderful to see the creative expression in corners and narrow streets that might otherwise by boring brick walls!