VAS Blog

Ongoing Classes and How They Help Our Artists

different artists have different ways they work

Each art teacher is going to have different things to teach you, even if it’s a class you have already taken before. One watercolor instructor may show you one way to set up your paint palette and another teacher will have a different preference. It’s not that one is wrong or right, it’s just that each instructor will have a different approach. I love to share that with people, because we as humans, never stop learning!

ongoing classes give you constant challenges

We have had students coming to our classes for years. Our students continue to learn and grow with us and improve at creating their art. Vancouver Art Space is a place to come and be creative in an encouraging environment.

Join Us!

If you would like to join us for a one time class, a 4 week or 8 week course, check out what we have to offer!

White on White Group Art Show: Artist Spotlight Part 3

White on White is our group art show hanging for the month of November at our gallery in Vancouver, Washington. This is part 3 of 3 blog posts where we will be introducing you to the artists participating in the show.

Joshua Unikel

Artist Statement:

Joshua Unikel has shown at CICA Museum (S Korea); Aether Gallery (Bulgaria); Griffith University Art Gallery (Australia); Sofia Art Week 2019 (Bulgaria); DesignPhiladelphia; The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit; Lawndale Art Center and will be showing at the Florida State University Museum of Fine Art and the Institute of Contemporary Art: Portland. He is the co-editor of No Quo: Attempts (DesignInquiry Press, 2017) and Beyond Category (Hobart and William Smith Colleges Press, 2015). His work has been published in Western Humanities Review, The Collagist, Tupelo Quarterly, The Journal, Sonora Review, [PANK], TriQuarterly, The Essay Review, Fugue, The Normal School, Essay Daily and other national journals. Unikel also serves as a contributing editor of Seneca Review.

He has been a residency and fellowship recipient at DesignInquiry; an artist-in-residence at The Open Book Workshop and a speaker at AIGA Pittsburgh, The AIGA Design Educators Conference, AWP, NonfictioNOW, Oberlin College, Michigan State University, The University of Oregon and Stony Brook Manhattan.

More of the artists work can be seen on their website HERE

The piece pictured above can be purchased HERE

Diane Cameron

Summer Leaves
Hidden Forrest

Artist Statement:

Nature is a recurring theme in my work and these pieces are a good example of that, leaves and trees. I explored the idea of white on white by creating an image of leaves that are there but the viewer has to look closely to see them. I hope that will encourage some thoughts about nature, wonder, appreciation, perhaps concern. I’ve always been fascinated by bare trees in winter and the patterns they make, especially against the snow. In the white on white forest I created, the trees are barely visible, almost hidden, what we see when we rush by without stopping to really look.

More of the artists work can be seen HERE

The artwork pictured above can be purchased on our online store:

“Summer Leaves” can be purchased HERE

“Hidden Forest” can be purchased HERE

Barbara Sheehan

Pour a Little Tea
Bounce

Meet Barbara Dianne Sheehan, the Owner of this exciting  endeavor. Barbara has over 40 years experience designing, painting, and working in the creative arts. She has owned and operated an exclusive fine art and art furniture gallery,  a custom home remodeling and design firm, and since graduating from Pacific NW College of Art in 1996, with a BA degree in Painting, has worked as an independent artist.

From 1996 to 2001 Barbara was a founding member of PBNJ Studios, a group of artists committed to the fine arts community in SE Portland. Her work includes oil paintings, pastels, computerized/digital and photography collages – generally experimenting with materials and visuals.

Barbara has been professionally represented by ArtReps Richard Brooks,  as well as Mary McCay at Directional Publishing Inc. Her paintings have been featured in solo and group shows in Portland Oregon, New York City, and Ballyvaughan, Ireland.

The artworks pictured above can be purchased in our online store:

“Pour a Little Tea” can be purchased HERE

“Bounce” can be purchased HERE

White on White Group Art Show: Artists Spotlight Part 2

White on White is our group art show hanging for the month of November at our gallery in Vancouver, Washington. This is part 2 of 3 blog posts where we will be introducing you to the artists participating in the show.

Weiting Wei

Light Sleeper

Artists Statement:

Like little fish swim through a clump of anemones, every movement of the baby touched every nerve of the new mom. They don’t have a full night’s sleep, each nerve is a soldier ready to fight.
By mimicking the dynamics of sea anemone, I use the air dry clay and resin clay to sculpt the sleep state of new mom. Helpless but hopeful, Sensitive but peaceful, exhausted but beautiful!! My sculpture uses traditional and organic elements to explore very personal, yet universal, experiences of motherhood.

More of the artists work can be seen on their website HERE

The artwork pictured above can be purchased HERE

Christine Hubbard

Angelscape

The piece pictured above can be purchased HERE

Leanne Mills Bryant

Become An Insider!

Artists Statement:

My work is about exemplifying the cultural beauty of the Deep South. Referencing its backstory, my work embraces various hallmarks attributed to this region from antiquity to present day and is told through the eyes of a Southern woman. Using a variety of media, each element is chosen specifically to aid in propelling this native daughter’s story.

The piece above can be purchased HERE

White on White Group Art Show: Artist Spotlight Part 1

White on White is our group art show hanging for the month of November at our gallery in Vancouver, Washington. This is part 1 of 3 blog posts where we will be introducing you to the artists participating in the show.

Hillary Turner

Into The Void
Pristine Turmoil

Artist Statement:

Perceptions of Justice…
I can think of no topic more important nor relevant to our present culture, than the concept of Justice. I am attempting with my selections to illustrate various interpretations of this theme, both literally and figuratively.
It was certainly a challenge to cull images that reflect this grand concept and I hope the images I have selected do justice to
Justice!

More of Hillary’s work can be seen on her website HERE

The artwork pictured above can be purchased on our online store:

“Pristine Turmoil” can be purchased HERE

“Into The Void” can be purchased HERE

Robert Schwarzenbach

WhiteGridSquare/2018

Robert Schwarzenbach is a painter using geometric abstraction with an emphasis on color as primary narrative.

More of the artists work can be seen HERE

The piece above can be purchased in our online store HERE

Miguel Saludes

Studio Wall With Two Nails

Artists Statement”

“This painting is part of a series of works inspired by commonplace surfaces that I encountered on a daily basis. The white wall depicted was in my studio and the nails were used to hang other paintings. Upon discovering these locations I connected with them intimately, cultivating with every encounter a moment of reflection and transcendence. The passing of my grandmother, which happened around the time I began this series, brought me even closer to them. I sought and found refuge in these lonely places. In their quiet semblance I saw reflected the stark silence of the universe and the eminence of death that overwhelms my soul. Taking an existentialist approach I fully embraced my human condition, this inability to prove the existence of God, or an afterlife where I could perhaps one day reunite with my lost love. Yet, resilient, I found renewed faith and purpose in the act of depicting these spaces, hoping to cultivate, with every session, a spiritual experience.

I have come to realize that in my strife for reason and knowledge there are no answers to be found, only more grief, confusion, and fear. Embracing my limitations, I have chosen to focus my scrutiny on this intimate and approachable material world, which so often escapes our regard. Adopting the transformative alchemy and expressiveness of oil paint, I challenged myself with the task of depicting the walls and surfaces that accompany me on my daily errands. Painting them from observation not only empowered me to faithfully capture their material essence. It also allowed me to perpetuate fleeting emotional states and moments of spiritual enlightenment that my conversations of these surfaces inspired.

Now elevated to the platform of Painting, it is my hope that these personal experiences will transcend their place and time to reach a larger audience. My ultimate ambition is to share with every brushstroke, the raw expression of my pains, fears, uncertainties, and passions; universal words in the language of life. It is my intention as well to divulge my appreciation for the beauty and values the everyday life has to offer, especially in these often dull and busy digital days.”

More of the artists work can be seen on their website HERE

The piece pictured above can be purchased HERE

Giving Back to the Community as an Artist

It feels good to do good! As artists, we can choose to donate our artwork, time or materials to help out others in our community.

Hosting events that help animal shelters

At Vancouver Art Space, we host a Paint Your Pet event where we donate a percentage of the proceeds to or local Humane Society branch. It’s fun for our budding artists and they get to paint with us knowing they are also helping out animals in our community!

artists can also auction off art to donate on their own

Artists can also hold auctions on their personal Social Media accounts. This is a way for an artist to use their creations to give to a charity of their choosing.

Some artists give directly to the community with “art Drops” or giving away free art

Artists like Hidden Stash Art on Instagram will leave art around town for Free Art Friday. These are also known as Art Drops. It’s another way for artists to spread joy with their art to people who may not have seen their art before. Check out more of Hidden Stash’s work HERE.

There are so many ways to do good with your artwork as an artist, or as a patron of the arts. We here at Vancouver Art Space are grateful for every artist and patron who does what they can to make the world a little better and brighter.

Why I love teaching at Vancouver Art Space

I get to help others realize that anyone can create art!

We often get adults coming in that have been discouraged at a young age from creating art. Here at Vancouver Art Space, we know that anyone with the passion and drive to make art, can! We are here to help guide, educate and encourage budding artists and makers to paint, glue, stamp and have fun making art.

We get to introduce students to new art tools and techniques

It’s one thing to buy an art tool, but how the heck are you going to use it? We like having in person classes so that if a student has a question, they can get an answer right away. If we don’t have an answer, we can explore together to find one. Sometimes it just takes a friendly human who has dabbled with your supplies before to tell you a different way to use them and open your eyes to a new technique.

We’ve created a fun art community here

Artists are often known for hiding away alone to work on their art. Here we have created a welcoming art community where we can come together and make art. When you take art classes, you get peer critiques, constructive feedback, help with troubleshooting and more from fellow artists of all skill levels.

Check out some of our beginner friendly classes and workshops

Are People Born With the Talent to Create Art? An Art Instructors Opinion.

“Oh my sister was born with the artistic talent, not me”

I hear this a lot from people who think they just can’t make art because they weren’t “born with it”. My response to the above statement was “I bet your sister spent a lot of time practicing to get really good at creating art, didn’t she?” of course the response was yes! If you want to be good at something and you try really hard and practice all the time, you are bound to improve!

practice, practice and practice some more!

If you want to be a better artist, practice as much as you can! If you need accountability, join a class. Think of a classroom like a gym. You pay a fee and because you are paying for it, you will do the thing you are there to do. By creating art as much as you can and as often as you can, you WILL improve your skills. Not to mention what you will learn from instructors in a creative environment.

some people understand how to make art and others need clarification to understand

Some people have an easier understanding of art and how to create it. If I am teaching someone to paint and tell them they need more contrast and value changes, and they understand that, they will be able to follow my directions and improve their piece. If a student doesn’t ask for me to explain further because they don’t understand what that means, they might not get what I was trying to say. It doesn’t mean one person is “gifted”, they just might understand things differently than someone else. We all learn differently.

Don’t get discouraged, we all need to start somewhere!

Creating art is a lot harder if you aren’t in the right mindset. So don’t be so hard on yourself if everything isn’t a masterpiece. That’s what sketchbooks are for! Warm up sketches, gesture drawings and mock ups are all part of the process of creating art. Sometimes it takes 20 sketches to get the right composition down, and that’s just part of the process.

You can always recreate a piece of art once your skill level is up, like Krystlesaurus did above. Stay positive and know if you keep your chin up and keep creating, you’ll eventually get to where you want to be as an artist.

How do I get my art in an art show?

So, you’ve made a piece of art and want to show it off, now what? When just starting out, many artists don’t know how to go about getting their work into an art show. You are not alone, we have all been there!

Call to artists

The thing you are looking for is a Call to Artists. Vancouver Art Space has a tab at the top of our website to direct you to all of the upcoming art shows we will have. Click here to be taken to our Call to Artists page. You can type this in your search engine to find some. Entry Thingy is a site that many curators use to post their Calls, we use it on our site.

I applied, how should I prepare my work?

Make sure to read through the directions that the curator has put on the Call. It’s very important to make sure you have a safe way to hang your work in the gallery space. The above photo shows a proper way to wire a framed canvas piece. You want to make sure your artwork will hang safely and not fall down and damage your piece. We also suggest you label the back of the piece with your information just to be safe.

Works on paper or photographic prints should be matted and behind glass. NEVER send a loose sheet of paper to an art show. It’s good to take a picture of your piece before you put it behind glass so you have a clear image without glare to email off for the Call and also for your personal files. The above image is by artist Barbara Sheehan and has a double mat board.

Package your art well if you are shipping

It’s good to invest in proper shipping boxes for your pieces. If your art is not packaged correctly, it could be damaged in transit and not only get ruined, but will not arrive able to be put in the show. You can get very nice shipping boxes and include a return shipping label for it to be returned to you. Even if your piece sells, you will have your box back so you can use it to ship out more art for more shows.

Most importantly, read all of the directions for the Call. Not all curators will run their shows the same and you don’t want to miss something and get left out of the show. VAS is working on an Artists 4 Artists series here at Vancouver Art Space so that we can give more info on how to be a professional artist. We hope this has been helpful!

Helping Out Independent Artists in the 2020 Pandemic

We are all experiencing rough times in the 2020 Pandemic, independent artists included. Artists make much of their income from art shows and conventions, many that have been canceled this year. Fotunentaly, there are still things you can do to support an artist that don’t require money. It’s true!

leave a comment

Social Media platforms help small artists get exposure to potential customers, so how you interact on these platforms can actually help them out. Leaving positive comments is one of those things that you can do for FREE. Instagram notices when you engage with an artist and will show you more of their content. Have you noticed seeing a post multiple times because it’s popular? Now you know why!

Clicking the like button

Tap that “LIKE” button! This shows the social media algorithms that people are interacting with your posts. Comment’s and “likes” can also boost the post and move it up on people’s timelines so that it gains more views. Basically, the more you interact with your artist’s posts, the better chances are that other people will see those posts too. You can help your favorite artists get popular online by doing these little things.

Share!

Tell your friends about artists by sharing their work. Most social media sites make it very easy to reshare a post. You can also go to an artists website and copy and paste the site to your Facebook page to share. You can help an artists audience grow by simply sharing their art with others. Sharing is caring!

We’d like to share the sites of the artists featured in this blog! They have all taught here at Vancouver Art Space and are lovely humans and awesome artists.

Krystlesaurus

Pamela Sue Johnson

Dawn Furstenburg

Our First Blog Post!

Mixed Media Wednesday is back!

We weren’t sure if we could have Mixed Media Wednesdays while keeping safe with the pandemic, but we found a way! We are requiring washed hands and masked faces for this fun event, that way everything stays clean and we can also make art together!

What is mixed media?

Mixed media is simply using more than one medium. So using paint, stamps, ink and collage on one piece would be a mixed media piece. The image above is from an art journal one of our members has made.

What is an art journal?

An art journal is a journal, but instead of just words, it also has art! Sometimes there are no words at all, just pages of fun experiments, art, sketches and fun. Click HERE to check out more info on our Mixed Media Wednesdays! We’d love to get creative with you!

We hope you liked our first post! We will be posting more on here to get you excited about art.