Hello! It's been a week already and I cant hardly believe how cool it was. The third edition of "Brasil Mania pop-up store" gathered great energy, people and creativity! Nice meetings about entrepreneurship, beautiful selection of products and the best host ever: the gorgeous Storia Gallery and its founder Emmanuelle Picciolo Gormezano. Launching my brand Lavinia Objetos in such great conditions just got me more and more inspired to move on. I'm very grateful to Isabel Brossolette Branco and Hellen Kupfer-Hass the masterminds behind the web platform Paris Mania. Take a look at the pictures below:
I was busy with my kid on wednesday so I didn't post earlier. So here I am catching up with you, my post subject is basically: if there's something in Paris that we can't complain about is "what to do?". There are so many options that, sometimes, we just get lost. Even living here for the last 7 years, I'm still discovering many things. Anyway, the fall season is also the Art season. All the big exhibitions and Art fairs are mid October. I'm trying to get organised and give you my own reviews because I haven't visit yet any of those amazing exhibitions. For now, I just extracted the texts below from the official websites and got excited to see them all!
So here's my DON'T MISS short list:
- Picasso Mania (Grand Palais): The twenty or so solo or group exhibitions since 1973 that have focused on the study of the posterity of Pablo Picasso’s oeuvre testify to its impact on contemporary art. The exhibition at the Grand Palais takes a simultaneously chronological and thematic approach to the critical and artistic highlights of Picasso’s career and the myth that gradually built up around his name. More information here
- Warhol Unlimited (MAM Paris): As a setting for the first European showing of Shadows (1978-79) in their entirety, the Musée d'Art moderne de la Ville de Paris is devoting a remarkable exhibition to Andy Warhol (1928-1987). Comprising over 200 works, Unlimited highlights the serial side of the Warhol oeuvre – a crucial aspect of his work – and his ability to rethink the way art should be exhibited. More information here
- Splendour and Misery. Pictures of Prostitution, 1850-1910 (Musée d'Orsay): The first major show on the subject of prostitution, this exhibition attempts to retrace the way French and foreign artists, fascinated by the people and places involved in prostitution, have constantly sought to find new pictorial resources for depicting the realities and fantasies it implied. More information here
- Fantastic! Kuniyoshi, demon of the prints (Petit Palais): Visitors to the Petit Palais are invited to discover, for the first time in France, the work of the extraordinary artist, Kuniyoshi (1797-1861). His prints are characterised by originality in their inspiration and composition, violence in the monster and warrior prints, and humour in the Chinese shadows series, the caricatures and his representations of the life of cats. More information here.
I can't forget to mention the FIAC, the Contemporary Art Fair. More than an Art Fair is a cultural event that shakes Paris, the whole city gets involved, it's amazing.
Oh, I chose to draw Picasso's face in my real Facebook as my first drawing.
See you next week!
Later is better than never! I've been working a lot this week so this is a late and short post. I have two logo projects happening here in France (and happy clients) and I'm enjoying the fact that I started my Facebook Project this month, so I'm participating in Inktober (check it out here and here). This is a cool world wide illustrators challenge to draw with pen and ink everyday in October. So far, so good I can say, I'm disciplined and committed.... and I'm dealing with a lot of frustration too.
I'm learning to deal with my Inner Critic, not easy. But, what's cool about it is I'm getting used not to give up on drawings, embrace my (many) mistakes and getting to know my materials much better. Some days I sit and draw and nothing happens, my lines sucks. See the examples below and you'l see what I'm talking about. So, I've been searching the Internet about tips on face elements and Pinterest is a good friend. I'm considering taking live drawing sessions and I definitely need to keep working on my skills, especially in angles, scale and anatomy. It means pretty much everything!
Anyway, I hope I'll stick to it and keep having fun.
I've been "hiding" my progress with my painting online course Explore Colour to post here. It finished last weekend, but the Facebook Group is still very active and people keep posting their paintings. The goal was to have 4 still lives works finished with the method that Este McLeod developed for over 25 years of experience as a full time artist. How about me? I only finished one painting and I'm in the middle of the second one! It's been very challenging to be pushed out of my comfort zone. So let's talk about it...
It's been years since I touched a brush to mix acrylic painting colours. It used to be my passion, painting... I was in the university getting a BFA degree, I had an studio, I use to pay my vacations selling my big scale works, well, I was MEANT TO BE a painter. Sometimes when the whole world expects you do to something it can be very scary, and you fight AGAINST that. I don't know exactly what happened (because things happens) but I quit the university, I had no more studio and I stopped. Years later I restarted everything again: I sold paintings, I had two art galleries representing my work and I stopped. Like that. A good friend told me: "Lavinia, it's so easy to know when you are really happy, you just make art!". I think this is probably very true.
So again here I am: painting, with a new studio, searching for my style, testing new materials and opened to the many novelties in the Art field that I wasn't aware of. All I can think about are the endless possibilities of effects and textures with the use of mediums and drawing plants...
Finally, my conclusions with the process are:
- 1) The botanics theme (plants, flowers, still lives...) are maybe not what I'm interested on keep painting but, as weird as it sounds, drawing it in a regular basis. I always struggle with themes.
- 2) The mini exercises proposed were an amazing Nature eye opener and I think I'm much more aware of the outdoors surrounding me.
- 3) Patience. I'm learning to give time to each work. Waiting for a layer to dry, analyse the work and enjoy it.
- 4) It's good to have two or three paintings going on at the same time. It helps a lot with the patience issue.
- 5) Style. I'm far, far away on finding my own style. Practicing is the only way and I'm enjoying this creative "quest".
- 6) Painting a still life is definitely not easy as it seems.
There is nothing better than testing your limits.
I decided I'll be posting regularly on my blog on Wednesdays and I'll also try to keep my site updated with my latest projects. Anyway, if you want to check it out or suggest something, please drop me a line whenever you want.
That said, my life has completely changed after my little "atelier". I feel so grateful with the opportunity given by my studio mates (I'll talk about them later) of sharing that space. Getting out of my house to work has increased my productivity a lot and, with the goal of improving my skills, I can finally follow my online courses much better. Yes, I confess: I'm addicted to online courses and I wish to have much more time available to watch and practice!
For me there's nothing more practical than that, not to mention the community, which is the best thing you can achieve, a cool connexion with people who have the same interests as you. It can really changes your life, like it changed mine as I posted before. The content available out there is so cool, there are so many different things, that I made a selection of the courses I'm taking now, going to take soon or wish I could take:
Explore Colour: This brand new course is the one I'm taking right now. It got me back to practicing acrylic painting and I couldn't be happier. I haven't painted in acrylics for about 15 years and I'm re-discovering a huge passion. The content of the course is posted in two weekends and you make 2 paintings with her guidelines each weekend. Este's is a very skilled painting artist, her method is very unique and her availability and tips are precious. I believe she'll have a new class in January 2016. More information here.
MATS A + Bootcamp 2016: In October I'll be taking the last live reviews courses from Lilla Rogers ' "Make Art That Sells (part A)". It covers five different markets that an artist could approach and sell their art (like children books, scrapbooking, paper goods, etc.), the Part B is another 5 markets. The previous home décor course I have taken was packed with lots and lots of info and I believe I wasn't really ready to take it. Summer trips, kids at home, lack of concentration... I needed much more time and experience because the level is really high. But, I'm excited to take another one once Lilla is an inspiration and keep us very busy with many exercises, marketing and business tips. Anyway, I'll be busy with her a lot because I signed up to Bootcamp 2016. Can't wait!
Skillshare and Creative Bug: These two platforms are similar in the way they work: you sign up and pay a monthly fee to access their content. Creative Bug is more arts and crafts oriented and Skillshare is great for design and tech skills update. There are so many options, sooooooo many content that you have to filter what interests you the most. And those platforms are REALLY addictive. Creative Bug features Lisa Congdon, Molly Hatch and Yao Cheng, some of the few artists that admire. Skillshare has Jessica Hische, Elizabeth Olwen, also Lisa Congdon and many other to discover.
Koosje Koene: Top of my wish list. The co-founder of Sketchbook Skool has beautiful designed courses for improving drawing skills and art journaling. I love the way she teaches and the exercises she proposed... I think after MATS, I'll be going back to the basics. I gave a break from Sketchbook School, that I love, but I think I'll take January courses as they'll have Felix Schoenberger as a teacher.
Liz Steel's Sketching Now courses: I found about Liz in Sketchbook School and she's a very well known artist in the Urban Sketchers community. I love her style and her techniques on drawing observation, my friend who took Foundations told me she learned a lot.
Carla Sonheim: Some of the classes offered are in my wish list, like Word Play. I never took any of them but I hope I find time soon. Few of my online friends totally recommend it.
Long post isn't it? You'll have fun checking out about all of those courses. Let me know if you get inspired and enroll to any of them. See ya!
It's been a very exciting "rentrée" for me. I've been setting up my new studio and enjoying my new work routine. September is the beginning of the year (for someone coming from the South Hemisphere it sounds weird!) and there are huge events here in Paris, like Who's Next and Maison & Objet. Fortunately, I had the chance to see them both and get really inspired.
Who's Next/Prêt-à-Porter is the most important Fashion Trade Show in the world. There are more than 2000 exhibitors and you can see from established big brands to fresh new creators coming out of the schools and exposing themselves to the market. All next year trends are there. They have two editions that lasts 3 days, one in January (Autumn/Winter season) and the other one in September (Summer/Spring).
Maison & Objet, which means House and Object, is sooooo big (8 pavilions) that lasts 5 days! It's all about Home Décor and they reorganised everything this year. I only saw one (huge) pavilion, and, in my opinion, the most interesting, the one called Now!. It has all kinds of products, furniture, lamps, textiles, stationery... displaying what's coming next in Home Déc. Every year they choose a country to promote their best designers. Taiwan was the chosen one this year, they have interesting things but I'm always, always amazed by the Scandinavian designs. Denmark, Sweden, Finland are the best.
The next interesting shows are Première Vision, everything in textiles you can imagine and FIAC, the International Contemporary Art Fair, when the world best galleries get together in the Grand Palais.
Tonight I'll be visiting another show Now! Le Off, part of the Paris Design Week that getting better every year. So now it's time to digest and think about all the information I gathered and keep working.
See you soon!
As I posted in my Facebook, Twitter and Instagram feeds I have exciting news! Finally I'll have my own studio here in Paris. "Mon nouveau atelier" is small, cozy and very well located, something that I've been dreaming for a while. I'm sharing the space with a small fashion brand that you'll hear about because they're very talented people. So, dreams can be true when you are grateful to the universe (and your lovely husband!).
I'll be posting some photos soon.
It's been a while I haven't posted anything, or even updated my portfolio (shame on me!) and that's because I spent a whole month in vacations. I went on a trip with my husband and two kids (5yo and 2,5 yo). It was exhausting (small children parents knows what I'm talking about...) and amazing. Almost no Internet, no computer or IPad... just a bad connection sometimes to post few photos. We visited many different places and enjoyed a lot being close to the water, both the Mediterranean Sea and the Drôme River. The kids had a blast.
I also had a break from regular drawing and I don't regret it all, because I wrote A LOT. Journaling is a cool experience and I pampered myself with some contemplation time. Reading some books, going bike riding and trekking, and being in contact with the nature (and great wine) can change your mood for the year ahead.
Now I'm back to reality here in Paris, trying to get things done. I'll be taking MORE online classes next semester and the next one of it is in acrylic painting! I'm so excited! Don't worry, I'll post it about it later. So, before I have something cool from my production to show, let's go shopping for art material to get inspired.
Here are, in my opinion, the BEST art supplies addresses in Paris:
Le Géant des Beaux-Arts: it's like Paradise in Earth, I can happily cross the town for getting in one of the 2 stores they have here (I go in the one in the 11ème) but I do almost my shopping online.
Rougier & Plé (Graphigro): They are 50 stores in France and I normally go to the one in the XVème, but it's not my favorite I like the one in the Marais. They have a nice selection of products.
Lavrut: I visited this shop a while ago, I found everything very expensive but they are located in a famous "Passage", so the visit is something special.
Sennelier: you just want to die when you get inside this tiny little shop in the Rive Gauche packed with the best (and expensive) you can find in art materials. They sell Dr. Ph Martins inks here, the only place I found it. They have weird open time schedule, but if you visit the Louvre you just cross a bridge and you're there. They have another shop in Montparnasse but it was closed when I try to visit.
Boesner: Never been there but my sketching folks loves the address, they have some amazing squared sketchbooks. I'm planning to go soon.
Marin: A friend told me about it and it seems like THE secret place, where the pros go. They have a good website and I think I gonna freak out when I see this place. They are a wood, colors and fabric manufacturer!
So if you are an art material addict, like me, visiting Paris let me know if you stop by one of these stores.
I've been very busy with my MATS Home Décor course, connecting with amazing artists that I admire and learning A LOT. It can be very stressing and overwhelming but also very inspiring. I couldn't post my homework for Fabric (last week's subject) because I went on a short trip to a beautiful farm with no phone or Internet and I pretty much got disconnected of my daily life. For now, it's clear that I have to build up a strong portfolio if want to go somewhere in my career.
Now I'm back to Paris and my son is on vacations. So, finding time to study, take care of my kids and keep up with my assignments is very challenging. But to be a part of such talented community is a daily gift.
Well, I was planning about this post before I started this course so I can continue with my "sharing knowledge" mood. So, this time is about art/design blogs that I've been following for years that I wanted to talk about! They're a real source of inspiration for me and reading them regularly is how I try to identify what's trendy in the creative world, find about new artists and, if I like a post subject, go deeper in researching. For someone who loves information like me, there's nothing better.
Here they are:
- Design Milk: Everything I love - Art, Architecture, Interiors, Products, Home, Jewellery and more. The content is so well selected. I check it daily.
- Fubiz: Daily dose of inspiration and contemporary creative culture platform. Very diverse and interesting.
- Swissmiss: I really respect what Tina Roth Eisenberg does in sharing content in design, creativity and inspiration. I check it as much as I can and she has a Friday Link Pack full of interesting things to see in the Internet.
- Dezeen Magazine: A magazine as they say. I love the way they mix subjects like Architecture, Product Design, Art and Technology. It's very trendy and full of cool content.
I have in my Feed reader many others more and I'll be soon sharing them. I hope you like it.
I'm so happy to announce that I'm enrolled at MATS Home Décor course! This one very important step to make my designing products dream come true. I was "flirting" with this online course for months and I'm amazed about the professional level found in the community. The week #1 was like a tsunami of information and, even preparing my son's birthday party, taking care of my everyday tasks, I completed my first assignment! See below:
Do you like it? What do you think? Well, it was pretty overwhelming week. Many decisions, confidence crisis, doubts... My husband's support and encouragement were fundamental for helping me go through this with the kids demands. But I could do something and this is what I learned:
- My style is still under development.
- I need to develop a method of work ASAP!
- I have to trust my taste and be true to myself to be able to make things that I like and I would buy.
- Designing a logo and have my business card done is a top priority.
- It's gonna be a long and very fun road!
I just don't know if I'll be posting that much during those 4 weeks. We'll see!
If there's one thing that I'm crazy about is paper and print process. Yesterday, I had the chance to visit a Print Company called Imprimerie du Marais, located in the heart of the coolest quartier in Paris.
What they do is pure art. Really, each step of the printing production is taken with so much care and love that the results couldn't be more striking. They are masters in silk screen, offset, embossing, foiling, binding for invitations, brochures and stationery for famous brands like Kenzo, Chloè, Dior... If you're looking for quality this is the place to go.
They also work with great design studios that keep pushing them to challenge themselves to create the most amazing products. Melody, the Communication Director, kindly gave me a gift that I couldn't love more! A box with 8 notebooks, each one designed by a different studio, illustrator or graphic designer, that I can't stop staring, touching and get inspired. A collector's piece that you can see below.
What I liked most about this visit is the perfect combination of the high technology printing process with the handmade touch. It gave me many ideas and perspectives and to keep moving on. I hope we'll be partners in many projects very soon.
I'm my last post I talked about what changed my creative life and gave all the information I could about it... and it was a success! I had many people discussing and getting interested about learning. Which makes me really happy and gives me fuel to keep sharing anything that can help to get you more creative.
That said, I realised that is great idea to combine both sides of the same coin: Theory and Practice. For a period of my life I dedicated myself to study Art History and Theory, which I really love, and I completely neglected practicing drawing or painting. There's no particular reason for that and I was really busy on writing my final paper for getting my BFA degree at University. Later on, my knowledge led me to open an art gallery that you can see here.
If you ask me what what I think about getting a degree in an Art School, go back to the university, I would ask you if you have time for that. If you have go for it, I particularly love the academic atmosphere (but this is me). If you don't, you're not interested, or if life happened in a different way, it doesn't mean that you can't be an artist!
Anyway, to help you to build a stronger knowledge basis in Art here are my tips:
"The Story of Art", E.H. Gombrich: this is the first book I read about art when I was 17 and I keep going back to it! Great for beginners and easy to read. It covers almost everything in Art History, pretty much a classic.
"Theories of Modern Art: A Source Book By Artists and Critics" by Herschel B. Chipp: another book that I keep coming back to research about the artists - like Van Gogh, Matisse and Gauguin - ideas and inspirations. A great collection of letters, interview and notes.
"Styles, Schools and Movements" by Amy Dempsey: an excellent source book that lists all the Modern Era movements in a chronological way. It evens come with a graphic so you can see how many movements happened at the same time! I think the way she describes everything is priceless and, if you want to go deeper, every description comes with references.
There are many other sources that I check regularly, like magazines and websites. There are few other books that I find very important but the language can be very academic or difficult to read if you're a beginner. But, if you want to share your preferences or suggest me a book, feel free to drop me a line. :)
I was someone, since I remember, meant to be an ARTIST. My parents enrolled me in a kid's Art School when I was 2yo! During my school years, I was always the kid in the class who use to draw caricatures of the teachers. Anyway, time passed, I took many art classes in many different places and periods of my life.
When I was 17, I shared an art studio with some friends, I "fell" in my professional life as a Graphic Designer when I was about 20 and before finish my course at the University (that I eventually dropped)... I worked with wonderful people and, having a gap in my formation, I finally had a BFA degree in my 30's.
After that, I opened with my best friend our art gallery entre-tanto. Then I moved to Paris, became mom and, even never stop working as graphic designer, I missed something... Well, to be honest I kind of sabotaged my artistic life for many personal reasons.
So, last year, to be more precise, around April, everything changed. I was reading my Facebook timeline and I saw a post that a friend enrolled to Sketchbook Skool, yes with a k. To make this post a little more interesting, and because one thing leads to another, I decided to make a list of five things that REALLY changed my creative life forever:
- Sketchbook Skool: I can't be more grateful to have stumbled upon Danny Gregory and Koosje Koene and, since the beginning of their project, be a part of this wonderful creative community. All the courses are just fantastic and the teachers are amazing artists.
- The book "Art Inc." by Lisa Congdon: I was at the Louvre one day and after my visit in the museum, I entered a book shop and I saw this book, I bought it and read it... a whole new world opened to me.
- Pattern Camp by Jessica Swift: After reading Lisa's book, I started to check her website and she posted about this course, that I took last February. I always interested by Surface Pattern Design and I didn't know where I could learn it. Jessica is one of the most generous teachers I ever had.
- Creative Bug: OMG, inspiration and stretching skills everywhere! I'm in love with Yao Cheng's work and watercolour classes.
- Urban Sketchers: Participating in the Paris Urban Sketchers meetings, or sketchcrawls, I had the chance to make new friends and share my work.
What I learned with my experience is not new: "the more you give, the more you get". Just simple generosity. Sharing tips, drawings, posts, sites that can enhance yours and other people's skills is just something that I intend to keep doing.
Since I restart drawing and painting I live Spring in a different way. I think I have my eyes more opened to the colors and shades of leaves and flowers. I love the variety of them, each week I see some new varieties blooming. Inspired by that, I started to study the shapes and test new papers for watercolor. Florals are not my real thing but I kind of enjoying them. Style shifting? We'll see.
Watercolor is a medium that I never tried till last year. I find it very interesting to experiment with, there are so many possibilities... I love the portability when sketching outdoors but I'm far away from controlling and getting what I want. Papers, brushes and the mist important thing: patience. Which, to be honest, I don't have too much. Too deal with it I work now in multiple projects at the same time. I create a background in a paper, go back to another drawing, then, while one is drying, I continue another. For now, I'm testing and having fun with the process.
I'm so excited about this website... And very happy you're reading this FIRST post! Blogging is something pretty new for me and I'll be writing, or at least, trying to write in English, just because is the universal language.
I've been working as a graphic designer for 20 years now and I had never, ever displayed properly my work. You can only find it in the websites of the few communication agencies that I worked for. Anyway, my career is something that simply happened (I have a BFA degree that took me a long time to complete, but that's another story...) and taking care of it, organising my portfolio, sharing my work and showing it to the world is something that I decided to do it right now...
Turning 40 causes this kind of (r)evolution!
Trying new experiences, improving my skills and connecting with people interested in Art in general is few of my goals with this website. Please feel free to make comments and suggestions. A website is something that's always improving and I'll be adding new work and features (like signing up for a newsletter) really soon.
Little by little you'll get to know me better... Enjoy it!