Tag Archives: artist

Artist Inspiration : Rob Gonsalves

When I first saw Rob Gonsalves’ art on a friend’s Facebook Wall, my first thoughts were of Dali and Escher. There was a distinctly surreal look to the artwork, and being a fan of all things weird and surreal, my interest was piqued.

You can find Rob Gonsalves on Facebook here: https://m.facebook.com/RobGonsalves.Official

He even has a Wikipedia entry, how wonderful is that? Read it to understand his intriguing thought processes and techniques, and where he’s coming from with his paintings. http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rob_Gonsalves

Here’s an excerpt from the Wikipedia entry, which explaims the difference between Dali/Escher/Tanguy/Magritte’s Surrealism and Rob Gonsalves’ own unique brand:

Although Gonsalves’ work is often categorized as surrealistic, it differs because the images are deliberately planned and result from conscious thought. Ideas are largely generated by the external world and involve recognizable human activities, using carefully planned illusionist devices. Gonsalves injects a sense of magic into realistic scenes. As a result, the term “Magic Realism” describes his work accurately. His work is an attempt to represent human beings’ desire to believe the impossible, to be open to possibility.

For me, the best parts, of course, are the paintings themselves. (Images curated from Google Images). Enjoy!
















Artist Inspiration : Terry Jackson

Teresa “Terry” Jackson currently lives nowhere and everywhere, on the Seven Seas, a boat travelling around the great big continent of Australia.

In Terry’s own words, from this site:
“I’m a self taught wildlife artist from beautiful South Australia. I began drawing in 2005 and never really stopped. My favourite medium is graphite but I also work in soft pastel and coloured pencil”.

This amazing artist’s favoured medium is a graphite pencil. Sometime using just ONE single pencil, and hours of intense concentration, mixed in with a whole lot of love for wildlife, Terry creates wonderfully detailed photorealistic drawings such as these:

“Pride and Joy” by Terry Jackson

“Tiger” by Terry Jackson

“Feeling a little cocky” by Terry Jackson

“Dos Lobos” by Terry Jackson

“Tanklet” by Terry Jackson

“Nice Scarf!” by Terry Jackson

“Oh hey!” by Terry Jackson. Graphite and pastels.

“Zac” by Terry Jackson. Pastels. Commissioned work.

“Owl Whisperer” by Terry Jackson. Graphite and pastels. Wild Whimsy series.

“What a Galah!” by Terry Jackson. Wild Colour Series.

“Fennec Fox” by Terry Jackson. Wild Colour Series.

“Mouse Opposum” by Terry Jackson. Wild Colour Series.

Just amazing!! Check out Terry’s website Drawn Wild, where you can find out more information about her, including where to buy prints of her truly amazing work.

Life Imitating Art…

…or is it the other way round?

I watched the pilot episode of the new Showtime television series “Penny Dreadful” the other day, and was smitten by a number of things. Least of all the actress Eva Green, who first caught my eye as the haughty Queen Sibylla in Ridley Scott’s “Kingdom Of Heaven”, and later as an eccentric teacher in “Cracks”. She was also Vesper Lynd in the Daniel Craig Bond movie “Casino Royale”.

(Images are sourced from Google Images)

She’s been a Queen

…a Teacher

…a Femme Fatale

…as well as many other varied characters, in a range of diverse films over the years.

And now Eva Green stars as Vanessa Ives in the Goth/Steampunk/Horror/Supernatural/League of Extraordinary Gentlemen/Sherlock Holmes/Frankenstein series “Penny Dreadful“. Her character, Vanessa Ives, is a beautiful, enigmatic young lady who is also psychic and clairvoyant. And extremely fetching in tight-laced Victorian garb oooo errr! ;)

Anyhow, in one scene, Vanessa is sitting at a table with a deck of dark purple Tarot cards, which she spreads out in a semi-circle. We don’t actually get to see any details of those cards right then. After some suggestive banter with Josh Hartnett’s American gunslinger dude character Ethan Chandler, she invites him to pick a card. She turns over the card Ethan’s selected. It’s The Lovers.



My interest piqued, I searched online to see if these cards really existed, or were they just a stage prop (like those newspapers you see in movies where only the front and backs have actual newsprint and the rest is just blank paper). The artwork of the Lovers card that viewers get to see on screen is minimalistic yet macabre. If this deck was real, it would shoot to the top of my Must Have Wishlist. (Yes, unfortunately in my quest to be as spiritually enlightened as Yoda, light sabers divination cards still get me all excited).

Well, what do you know, the Penny Dreadful Tarot IS a real deck. And it can be bought from Showtime’s own website through this link http://store.sho.com/penny-dreadful-tarot-cards/detail.php?p=523695

The price is reasonable too, at USD$14.95. Only, after heading to the checkout, I was greatly disappointed to see that postage to Australia would be a staggering $34.95?? WTF, excuse my French…was the deck gold-foiled and dipped in caviar, then wrapped in platinum paper covered in diamond dust, or something? Put it back on the shelf, girl, right now!

I next looked at the Penny Dreadful Tarot deck listed on Amazon.com. US readers will be pleased to know the deck is available to purchase from there too. Only, for me once again, my efforts to secure this deck were thwarted…Amazon.com just would not post the deck to Australia. Amazon.co.uk did not even have the deck listed. SIGH…

Anyhow, undaunted, I searched for other sites online. And then I just happened upon this site Popcultcha that not only had the Penny Dreadful Tarot at a great price, AUD$18.99, but also somehow managed to discount the price of postage too…meaning when I got past the checkout the postage was Freeeee…Here’s the link.

I also went searching for the artist who created this deck. She’s Anaïs Chareyre aka “Irio” from Ireland, and here is her deviantArt page showing the full Penny Dreadful Tarot deck http://irio.deviantart.com/art/Penny-Dreadful-Tarot-Cards-449642001


What are you waiting for? Run, don’t walk! 😄

Posted from WordPress for Android.


Artist Inspiration : BOBBETTE ROSE

The third artist in my current lineup of artists that inspire me is Bobbette Rose. Bobbette’s art falls into the Colour Field category, but her chosen medium is very different from that of Helen Frankenthaler and Ana Elisa Benavent, the other 2 artists I have just written about. Bobbette’s technique involves the use of Encaustic wax.

Here is the glorious piece that first caught my attention, and the description of Bobbette’s technique, courtesy of Grace Chosy Gallery. It’s called “Liminal Moment”. (Incidentally, I looked up the Grace Chosy Gallery online, and found out it’s now closed in 2013 after 34 years in the business. Such a shame).


“Liminal Moment by Bobbette Rose – Encaustic Monotype on Paper. These are paintings done directly on a heated plate with pigmented wax. Paper is laid on top and the image is offset onto the paper, similar to a typical monotype but no press. She does sveral thin layers, each time laying the paper down on the heated plate. In the final stage she often paints back into the image with a oil paint and a brush. Japanese washi paper used for this process, then matt and frame them under glass”.

Here’s Bobbette’s own Artist Statement:

“Inspired by the relationship between the physical and the spiritual, I delve into what lies beneath our surfaces, revealing the mystery and fragility of the lives we build within a context of growth and decay, memory and the passage of time.

My work mixes the ancient with the contemporary as I find new meanings in age-old materials and processes using mineral pigments, egg tempera, and beeswax. Making my own paint from ground pigments, I dive deeper into both image and process.

I work in mixed media and painting and widely exhibit and sell my work. I earned my MFA from UW-Madison and work professionally as a designer for print and web media. I teach classes and workshops through both university and community arts programs in design and fine art and have spoken at national and international conferences. I currently live in Madison, WI and am represented by Grace Chosy Gallery in Madison. I am a member of Wisconsin Visual Artists, International Encaustic Artists (IEA), the Chicago Artists’ Coalition, the artsTribe collective and the Madison Artists Alliance (MAA)”.

 Some more of Bobbette’s fabulous encaustic art, for your enjoyment (courtesy of Google images):

















Posted from WordPress for Android.


Giving It All Away for Free

I was reading Issue 9 of Renegade Collective magazine just today, and one particular article struck a chord in me. The article was called “The Art of Stealing”, and it was about one Lukas Renlund’s project called “Steal My Photograph! (SMP)”. Essentially, it is an Art movement where Lukas hangs framed prints of his photography on a wall in the street, with the invitation to simply take what you like. It started in Copenhagen, where the Finn was living and working, but now Lukas has taken his project to Barcelona, London and Cape Town, and is now preparing for a global tour. Each “exhibition” is filmed by hidden cameras installed behind the photo frames to capture the art thieves in the act of stealing.

Here are the videos of the Copenhagen, London, Barcelona and Cape Town “exhibitions”. Copenhagen Oct 2012, Barcelona Aug 2013, London Oct 2013, Cape Town March 2014.

The premise of Lukas’ social experiment is simple – steal a framed photograph, hang it anywhere you like, take a photo of it and email it back to Lukas. I love the idea.

A similar concept was hatched by my favourite Assemblage artist, Michael deMeng, called “Art Abandonment“:

Art Abandonment is a group designed to encourage random acts of art, left in various locations around the globe. The idea is that folks can make something and leave it for a lucky unsuspecting person to find. Artists can then post locations and photos of abandoned goodies…and finders can let everyone know that they are the lucky finder! O’ sweet abandon! So leave some art. Leave a contact email for the finder…and if you get notified share the message with this group. If you prefer you can use the contact email: i.found.artwork@gmail.com we’ll be checking it often and share the results.

Here’s an intro page on Typepad for full explanation:http://michaeldemeng.typepad.com/art_abandonment/   

Have fun!

The Art Abandonment Project is now also a newly published book by Michael and Andrea Mateus de Meng, available on Amazon.  I’ve just sent off for my copy, which I will share with my friends and hope that they will join me on this…as I  intend to give away some of my Photographic Art for free.

Actually, I’d come up with a very similar idea last year, which I mentally called “Random Arts of Kindness” and involved me giving out free art at subway stations, with the instructions that the recipient takes a photo of the piece and emails it back to me. Then last December I resigned from my workplace, which meant I was no longer commuting to the Perth CBD every weekday, so the idea went on the back burner. I did toy with the idea of having a Flash Exhibition at the Rockingham Library…but then quailed at the logistics of transporting the pieces and hanging them up and then the whole event being the world’s shortest exhibition lasting under 5 minutes as a flashmob of varsity students stole my Art during their tea break and I never heard back from any of the recipients. But now, perhaps, as a member of Michael deMeng’s Art Abandonment Project, I might be more motivated to get my arse into gear and actually practise what I preach?!





O.M.G. How did this email end up in my Hotmail Junk box?? By happy chance I stumbled upon it in time before it got deleted. Best news ever! Could this be the start of something BIG for me, at last??  I’d made an Artist Submission to Bridgeman Art Library for possible licensing of my work, and imagine my delight to get this reply! It’s early days yet, as, being a newcomer to all this I naturally have questions…but OMG, Best News Ever for 2014 so far!

Dear AlyZen,

Thank you for your email and for considering the Bridgeman Art Library for image licensing. I think your work would suit us very well for image licensing and so we’d be very happy to take your registration further.

I would like to recommend that you take a look at our website http://www.bridgemanstudio.com which is the homepage for our new contemporary artists platform, Bridgeman Studio. We represent artists for full copyright clearance as well as reproduction. We represent both estates and living artists including the estate of Lucian Freud, Alberto Giacometti and Mary Fedden to name just a few. With Bridgeman Studio our aim is to develop both the range of international artwork, as well as the range of illustration, fine art photography and graphic art that we can represent for licensing.

Having launched this month, we now have a dedicated space for our Studio artists. Each artist has their own profile page with links to their own websites and we have the staff, resources and online space for significant online marketing. The Resources page tells you a little more about the specifics of the offer. With regards to reproduction and copyright fees, you would receive 50% for each copyright clearance and 50% for each reproduction of your work. Above and beyond licensing, we are also keen that our Studio artists are open to the possibility of commissioned work for licensing, as well as having their images passed to our premium Print on Demand partner Art.com for open edition prints and prints on canvas (both of which are high quality). I note that from the link to your Society6 site, that you already have partnerships for merchandising. In order for you to get the best from our service, we would naturally be keen to ensure that any images to submitted to Bridgeman Studio would be free to be licensed and part of our merchandising programme without restriction.

I look forward to hearing your thoughts. If you’d like to register your interest and begin the process of joining the library, please do register here.

With all best wishes,


De Gournay handpainted wallpapers

I was reading an article in Vogue Living Australia just the other day when my eyes kept gravitating towards the wallpaper in the photoshoot. It was a glorious pale green, Chinoiserie style wallpaper with Oriental birds perched in the branches of trees or flying about. The caption of that image mentioned that the wallpaper was by “De Gournay”. My interest was piqued, so I did some research and boy, am I glad I did!

To pique YOUR interest, here is the link to the Vogue Living article: http://www.vogue.com.au/vogue+living/interiors/galleries/antiques+and+rockabilly+the+home+of+wheels+dollbabys+melanie+greensmith,28401?pos=5#top

Whilst I was aware that wallpaper was created by hand in the early days, and later on screen printed, and nowadays even digitally printed, I was far from aware until now that there is a current renaissance in handmade, hand painted wallpaper. And we are talking big money here…forget paying $30 for a square metre, think $300 and over, and you’re barely in the ballpark. The rich and famous are buying them not by the metre or even roll, but by the room and by the house, and a De Gournay wallpapered living room can cost over $20,000 easily. Imagine the price to paper an entire Hollywood home. OUCH!  But, if you think about it, it’s putting Art on your walls, and the walls BECOME Art. Nowadays, people pay silly money for “Art”, and some of this so-called “Art” is downright silly. Why not have your walls papered with something that not only looks good, but will be worth even more should you ever want to sell your house.

Here is the link to De Gournay, so you can have a peek at the luxurious beauty created by these 21st century artisans. The site isn’t forthcoming about the techniques employed by De Gournay’s artists, but there are snapshots showing handheld brushes, so you probably get the idea anyway.


You can see from the website that the company not only creates magnificent wallpaper, it also offers fabrics, furniture, mirrors, porcelain and also undertakes specific custom designs and projects. In the Press section of the De Gournay website, you’ll see how the company has been written up in dozens of magazine publications.

Not only do I find De Gournay handmade, hand painted wallpapers beautiful to look at, I also admire the artesanal care and detail that goes into each panel. It’s good to know that even in this day and age, with all that technology readily available, a high-end company would still choose to employ artists to do things the good old-fashioned way. (Even if most of us are too poor to afford its wares).

How does this “discovery” of handmade, hand painted wallpapers inspire my own creativity? Well, I already know how I large I can print my own artwork, and my next project will be incorporating gesso or plaster into my canvasses, to create some texture over which I will lay my printed tissue paper. My aim is to produce an approximation of “real” art, i.e art made using traditional materials such as oil paint, showing textures and paint strokes. My medium is digital, and so I need to utilise real flesh-and-blood materials to recreate the impression of such textures and paint strokes. After that, if my experimentation succeeds, I will try creating large panels of my designs, aka wallpaper posters.

That’s the theory, anyway…

Here are some images of De Gournay wallpaper, taken from Google Images, so you too can enjoy the sheer beauty of them:

deg-their-website 273030796128820158FVcGYcCBc Kimberley Hall 3693234940_850f020c44 SaraStory_gramercyParkRenovation-5 hollywood-glamour-decorating-tips-mueffling-1210-052

Artist Inspiration – SONIA DELAUNAY

Just by chance the other day, via surfing Pinterest, I came across a fascinating woman by the name of Sonia Delaunay.  I hadn’t heard about her before, and the thing that caught my eye on Pinterest was a photo of her juxtaposed against some strongly coloured, geometric shapes. Then, I realised that I had come across the name Delaunay before, but that of Sonia’s husband Robert.  A little research revealed that Robert and his wife Sonia had developed an offshoot of Cubism called “Orphism”, which was the transitional link between Cubism and Abstract Art.

Here is Wikipedia’s entry for “Orphism”: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orphism_(art)

What attracted me to Sonia Delaunay was the fact that not only was she an artist in the highest regard, she was also a Textile Designer and Surface Pattern Designer whose works crossed over from the realm of Art into furniture, furnishings, fabric and even fashion.  I’m very keen on patterns myself, if you’ve been following my blog, and that one image of Sonia with bold, colourful geometric shapes on the wall behind her, piqued my interest further.

Sonia Delaunay

(Image courtesy of Google Images)

Here then was another inspiring woman artist, and I do love them, so I thought I would write about her here, as her back story is a fascinating and compelling one.

Sonia Delaunay (November 14, 1885 – December 5, 1979) was a Jewish-French artist born in Gradizhsk, then in the Russian Empire, today in Poltava Oblast inUkraine.  At a young age, she was given into the care of her mother’s brother Henri Terk, an affluent lawyer and his wife Anna in St Petersburg, and formally adopted by the Terks in 1890.  After a privileged upbringing, she moved to Paris, France in 1905 to study Art.  However, being disillusioned with the way Art was taught at the school she enrolled in, Sonia spent most of her time trawling art galleries for inspiration.  Her early style resembled the post-impressionist art of Van GoghGauguin and Henri Rousseau and the fauves including Henri Matisse and Derain.

In her first year in Paris, Sonia met German art gallery owner Wilhelm Uhde, and they married in 1908.  Uhde was a homosexual, and it was a marriage of convenience…Sonia’s adoptive parents disapproved of her becoming an artist and demanded for her return to Russia.  For Uhde, marriage to Sonia provided a respectable cover for his homosexuality.  Through Uhde, Sonia Delaunay gained entrance into the art world, and she also benefited from his many connections as a gallery owner.

In 1909, however, Sonia met Robert Delaunay and by April that year they were lovers.  Sonia and Wilhelm Uhde divorced in 1910, leaving her free to marry Robert.  Their son Charles was born in January 1911.  Of Robert, Sonia said “In Robert Delaunay I found a poet. A poet who wrote not with words but with colours”. The Delaunays were supported financially by funds sent from Sonia’s aunt in St Petersburg.

Sonia called her artistic style “simultanéisme”, or Simultaneous Design.  In 1912, Sonia met the poet Blaise Cendrars, who became her friend and collaborator, and she subsequently illustrated Cendrars’ poem La prose du Transsibérien et de la Petite Jehanne de France (Prose of the Trans-Siberian and of Little Jehanne of France) about a journey on theTrans-Siberian Railway, by creating a 2m-long accordion-pleated book. Using simultaneous design principles the book merged text and design. The book, which was sold almost entirely by subscription, created a stir amongst Paris critics.

(I must say seeing this book has quite inspired me to try my hand once again at creating handmade books, but this time perhaps incorporating my own mobile photography artwork?)  Have a look yourself at the sheer genius of Sonia’s accordion book here, isn’t it wonderful?


While visiting Spain in 1914, the Delaunays were caught by the outbreak of the First World War, and decided to stay in Spain and Portugal.  They only returned to France in 1921.  The Russian Revolution also caused their funds from St Petersburg to dry up, and as a new source of income was required, Sonia found work designing clothes for Sergei Diaghilev in Madrid. She designed costumes for his production of Cleopatra (stage design by Robert Delaunay) and for the performance of Aida in Barcelona. In Madrid she decorated the Petit Casino (a nightclub) and founded Casa Sonia, selling her designs for interior decoration and fashion, with a branch in Bilbao. Still in her early 30s, Sonia was fast becoming the darling of the fashion and interior decoration world.

Back in France from 1921, Sonia threw herself into creating clothes for clients, with her signature of bright, bold colours and geometrical shapes. She also created and designed sets for theatre and film.  Robert Delaunay died of cancer in 1941.  Sonia was a toasted and celebrated artist well through her late years.  She passed away in 1979, aged 94, and is buried beside her husband Robert Delaunay in Gambais, near Paris.

Here are some images of Sonia Delaunay’s work, taken from Google Images.  I have chosen these images to represent her work in Fashion and Furnishings, as well as Art.

ozartsetc_sonia_delaunay_rythme_1934_9 tumblr_ls3f0tmT4d1r2q0z9o1_500 sonia delaunay, Robe Simultanee, 1923 sonia-delaunay-3-24-11-6 soniadelaunay simultaneous fashion market-at-minho

Featured Artist AlyZen Moonshadow | Artsy Shark


Posted from WordPress for Android

So pleased to make it as a Featured Artist on Artsyshark, the best resource for artists.