Painting on the Computer

December 10, 2011

photoshop progress – part 1 from Lois van Baarle on Vimeo.

When my friend Tom stopped over the other day I showed him a time-lapse video (that seems to be by someone using the name Design—I can't see any other names even on the "about me" page) of a Photoshop illustration Danny Gregory had recommended.

After Tom and I had watched that Tom had me jump over to the video that starts this post. It's a Photoshop painting by Lois van Baarle. (Be sure to watch the second part as well to see where she ends up with the painting.)

I love both these videos first because the artists are obviously very talented, but second because you see in quick fashion the many little decisions each makes as their paintings progress. You'll see them redraw, rework, rethink. Creating a painting, whether digitally on the computer or with natural media on paper (or canvas or some other substrata) is a process, and sometimes the process changes in midstream. 

    • Carolyn
    • December 10, 2011

    These are great. I especially appreciate the redrawing, repositioning, resizing, and otherwise changing earlier decisions. Experimenting, learning and choosing again.

    • Kate
    • December 10, 2011

    At the bottom of the DEISIGN blog page there is a copyright notice © Copyright Dei Gaztelumendi.

    • Caroline
    • December 10, 2011

    If this is accepted as art, and not great computer program manipulation, what does it mean for those who prefer to use pencil or pen and paper? It redefines the meaning of an artist and his/her work.
    Is this going to devalue the work of those who not use elctronics, or has that already happened? Is fine art going to go the way of other once highly regarded crafts that are now thought of as hobbies?
    Very thought-provoking.

  1. Reply

    Caroline, this is art. There is nothing simple about what this woman is doing. She has sketching and drawing skills, compositional skills and she utilizes them. I do not believe that using a computer instead of a pencil and paper redefines the meaning of an artist and his/her work.

    For those of us who work on the computer as illustrators and artists there is no question that this is art.

    The computer is another tool.

    It hasn’t devalued the work of people who don’t work on the computer. What has happened is a new generation of artists have grown up more comfortable on the computer than with pens or other media, perhaps, but they have real skills.

    There are illustrators and artists who work exclusively in natural media, others who work only on the computer and others who do a bit of both, for the same image, i.e. beginning with pencil and paper, scanning their drawings and then working up from there on the computer.

    The latter, as you can see from both the videos recommended is really not much different from working in oils the way some artists who work in oils work.

    The computer is simply another tool.

    I don’t follow your point about fine crafts being thought of a hobbies because the bookbinders and jewelry makers and other types of craftspeople I know are not doing something as a hobby—it is a fine craft in their hands, and frankly in the hands of many people I know it is also an art.

    So I don’t quite follow the logic of your thoughts on this, or it is perhaps that we are from two opposing points of view.

    Talented artists use finely tuned skills to apply any tools they can, to make the art they see in their minds. That’s how I see computer art or any art.

    But it all starts with the sketching for me. If people don’t have sketching skills it’s problematic for me.

    There is one problem that fine artists working on the computer still seem to be working out and that is a question of what is an original when the original exists only in the digital format and can be replicated perfectly over and over again, more perfectly than a conventional print, etching, silkscreen?

    There in is perhaps the only thought-provoking question this artist’s tool raises for me.

  2. Reply

    Kate, thank you for your eagle eye in finding that copyright name!

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