The Essence of Woman Exhibition.

“Throughout time, women have been a favorite subject of artists of all mediums. There is both mystery and awe to be found in their femininity, fertility and the curvature of their bodies”. The Essence of Woman Exhibition was held on Friday May 20, 2016 at the Garrett Museum of Art, in Garrett Indiana. The juried exhibition featured a collection of works from a broad range of artists locally, nationally and internationally and boasted different works of art, from paintings and photography to sculpture.

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The gallery itself was a wonderful venue, with large exhibition floors both upstairs and downstairs, that accommodated all the pieces that were accepted for the exhibition. This was a great opportunity for me to be apart of an exhibition in a town where art is valued and appreciated, and gain exposure as an upcoming artist. Seen above are two of my three entries in the exhibition: ‘Blissful Reminiscence’ and ‘Finally Free’.

The exhibition kicked off with a silent auction May 19th, honoring Dekalb County Domestic Task Force- raising awareness to domestic violence victims. I donated one of my paintings for this cause, which ended up being purchased by a collector who happened to stop by the gallery that day on a business trip.

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The following day the exhibition officially opened with an artist reception, featuring a local jazz band, which set the tone for the evening. Hearing all the artists and patrons mingling and engaging in art talk was the highlight for me, as I not only got to meet some very interesting people, but I also engaged in discussion about my work and my creative process.

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Gallery director Jim Gabbard (seen above) along with his team did a wonderful job at curating, and ensuring that each artist felt at home there at the gallery. The painting in the background titled ‘The Star Maiden’ was done by yours truly, specifically for the exhibition, and received the honorable mention award at the show. The exhibition went very well, and at the end of the reception I was surprised to know that one of my entries was selected to represent the show in the Journal Gazette (here), a local paper there in Indiana, and the hard copy was presented to my by Mr. Gabbard.

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This was a great experience for me, and many of the other artists who participated in the silent auction venture and the exhibition. I’m looking forward to future exhibitions at the Garrett Museum of Art, and working alongside their team as I grow as an artist and continue on this splendid journey fulfilling my dreams.

My art collection: Beauty beyond the pane by Adrian Blake

Adding pieces to an art collection provides a thrill like no other. It’s like finding that perfect pair of shoes– you just know you have to take them home. I recently found my latest bu…

Source: My art collection: Beauty beyond the pane by Adrian Blake

On the easel today.

On the easel today July 24,2016 features my newest painting, Muhammad Ali. The world seemed to hold a solemn moment of silence upon knowing of the death of this great human being on June 3, 2016. I sure did have a moment of silence. In this piece the aim was to capture the likeness of Ali in his youth, expressing his kingly character. The representation of Ali in this light signifies his dominance and even his own personal outlook about himself. His bravado and bravery mirrors a confident and unapologetic persona, that captivated the world and stood as a beacon for individuality  and personal belief.

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Ali, famously known for his brash comments in press conferences, and confidence in the ring is represented as how I see him; a cultural icon. There is a special relationship that works of art share with a person’s culture, and I see men such as Muhammad Ali as kings in my cultural beliefs-hence his representation.

In this piece you will see an aspect of my style that is evident throughout most of my portraits and representational work; the faint glow on and around the figure. In my paintings depicting figures, I use this to represent the personal aura of the figure or portrait that I am depicting. It speaks to the contained spirit that gives off its own unique light, as we do through our personality. I did run into some difficulty with this piece, seeing that I was using a black canvas, (I’ve come to prefer these) however, they worked themselves out eventually.

I don’t intend to create “art of the times” I aim to create art that shows an understanding of the integral relationship that is shared between art and my ethnic group; not just ethnic group though, but my perception of males and females of my race.

Despite the maxim: Everyday something new, which seems to define the creation of art in the modern era, because of the accessibility to more information from around the globe, I want my paintings to stay true to the idea of my art being about the relationship between its aesthetics and my cultural beliefs, rather than an emotional response to the happenings of the world.

Notable Commissions.

In Loving memory I.

This commission was done for a family who lost their son to an ailment. The family requested a piece be done that would always remind them of how they saw their son, as an angel, who loved the beach and being in nature.  This painting is primarily set around being in a warm environment (similar to that of their family unit), with a beautiful backdrop landscape and the waves rushing on the beach. Their son’s representation is in a peaceful environment, which symbolizes the peace that his life brought to theirs. This painting captured specifically what the family had in mind, and it is now their personal piece that they all cherish in their home, in loving memory of their son.

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In this painting the subject matter is very similar to the one above, as this was the second commission done for different members within the same family unit mentioned above. Despite the similarity in subject matter the environment is different. My clients requested this difference in order to add a contrasting dynamic from the first commission. What made this unique is the difference in atmosphere. The colors are cooler, and the moonlight hitting the waves adds its own visual impact in the piece.

Portrait

This drawing was done for a client who was interested in having a professional portrait of her daughter done for her daughter’s birthday. This portrait was to capture her childlike innocence and personality. Both my client and subject loved the piece, and it made for a wonderful gift that they both cherish to this day.

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One of my favorite things to do is draw portraits. To draw a portrait and represent the sitters likeness is no easy task. It takes a very different level of seeing and hand eye coordination. The difficulty increases even greater when the portrait is done live, in real time. This portrait was one such piece, and the likeness of my subject was captured wonderfully and presented to the family members who requested have it as a part of their personal collection.

 

On the easel today…

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Today 4/29/16 On The Easel features my newest painting. Inspired by my love of figurative art and the female form, this piece explores the anatomy of the voluptuous, athletic female figure. I intended to create a mystical dreamlike effect that enveloped the form and add a unique sense of emphasis on the figure in the composition. I intend to incorporate the use of delicacy in the background as I create the mystical surroundings, but at the same time use the power of strong skin colors that highlight the muscle structure and form of the figure. Creating subtle details in the background i want to allow the colors’ layers to create depth in the piece, which will pull the viewer into the piece beyond the figure.

Upon completion, this piece along with two other figurative paintings I created will be apart of an exhibition at the Garrett Museum of Art in Garrett Indiana.

Slowly but surely.

 

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How often do you quote your parents in what they have said to you over the years, once, twice, more than that? I don’t quote my parents very often, but there are always certain things that both my mother and father have said to me over the years that have stuck with me throughout my lifetime. The title of this blog post is one such quote: “Slowly but surely”. This is something that I remember my mother always saying to me growing up, and she said it with conviction and hope. It is a quote that has stuck with me throughout the years because it has given me hope, and taught me to be patient. Things will come my way, but they won’t always come as quick as I would like, but surely, they will be mine one day.

With this in mind, I wake up every day with hope, despite my trials, doubt and setbacks. In my very young art career where doubt faces me every day, with the prospect of failed attempts at reaching audiences, the constant fight between traditional art and modern ways of expressionism and cybercrime, where your artwork can be easily stolen and manipulated, I still persevere saying: slowly but surely. With my many attempts at becoming a revered visual communicator I have made some wonderful connections and have subsequently been published a number of times. One such publication is through the Athens Messenger’s Artist Studio section. View here. This publication explored the type of art I create, the inspiration behind most of my art and my experience as an local artist in Athens, Oh. The publication landed me a number of commissions throughout Athens where I created some wonderful artwork for a few personal collectors.

Being a traditional artist is a struggle in this digital age and in the age of modern means of creating art, like graphic design, which reigns king. My goal however is to be a traditional artist who brings back to the forefront the joy of traditional painting, like the old masters of classical art did. As I grow as a visual communicator I will continue to remember the words of my mother: “slowly but surely”, and one day surely all my goals will materialize how I’ve always imagined them.

 

The great game of life.

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Life is like a game of chess sometimes, and we are only pieces being controlled by an unseen hand; a hand that we all know is there, but still question it presence. Some say time governs all things, while some believe in something more personable…someone. God. Either way, this world and the happenings therein is all controlled chaos, and wonderful at that. There is some level of solace in the thought that there is something greater in this life, but a slight ere of trepidation not knowing for sure what really controls things.

Being mere movable pieces in this great game, we all play a game of hide and seek. One day we are the seekers, curious, full of wants and needs, hopes and dreams; looking for something to believe in, someone to comfort our wondering minds. Another day, we are the ones hiding. We hide things about ourselves that trouble us; things that we wish to conceal and have only our soul to be privy to.

All we have is time in this great game. Time can change all things- time can heal. In time we stop searching and even hiding. Then and only then we become the ones controlling the game we had been only movable pieces in.

 

On the easel today…

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Today 8/27/2015 I have on my easel a piece that initially begun as a warm-up painting, if you will, to a commission I recently received. I say “warm-up” because I sometimes take breaks from painting, and when I get back in the mode small paintings are my practice pieces. In a sense I refresh my talent. I initially thought this painting to be an experiment with technique as well. In so doing I would also find my comfort level, seeing that the commission would be considerably larger. After posting some initial pictures of my process on sites like Instagram and Facebook attention towards the piece grew, that’s when I decided to not only use it as practice but as an actual composition.

The colors I chose in the piece were from a very warm palette. I also wanted to add vivid life to the composition through the application of bright highlights coming from the setting sun, which I wanted to affect almost every object and every part of the painting. I wanted to create a calming mood; the mood you get in the late evening, leisurely walking along the beach, enjoying the warmth of the setting sun on your skin.

I added some natural elements to the composition- rocks, a few birds in the distance, little patches of land rising up out of the water showing depth, and a sailboat. These all serve to harmonize the whole composition. In the lower right of the composition an easel with a canvas propped on it is present. On the canvas an unfinished representation of the sunset in the background is present. I used this technique to create a dual point of engagement for the viewer. I want you the viewer to be engaged in the piece, where you can imagine yourself being the one painting this beautiful scenery, right out on the beach.

Feel free to leave a comment. I would love to hear them!

 

WELCOME!

Welcome to Adrian Blake Fine Art & Illustrations. Here you have direct access to my portfolio, my creative process and little insights on the meanings behind my artwork. If interested in purchasing a piece or requesting a commission, please feel free to send me an email at narcisus09@gmail.com. Questions about my creative process or any of the pieces on this website are welcome. I encourage every visitor to my site to leave a comment in the comments section, because I want your feedback. That feedback adds you to my creative process.