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Monthly Archives: October 2016

Psychedelic Art

Only a true artist would know the importance of art and how it can be a great form of self-expression. In all forms of art, be it music, paintings, or dance, one can witness the changing trends that have occurred since ancient times. Each of these trends are unique in their own way. While some are subtle, others tend to be rebellious. The 1960s was one such period that witnessed many trends from the hippy culture to people who would love to rebel and be seen and heard. Psychedelic art was one such trend that raised quite a few eyebrows!

Background of Psychedelic Art
The term psychedelic can be defined as ‘Pertaining to or characterized by hallucinations, distortions of perception and awareness, and sometimes psychotic-like behavior’. The distinctive characteristic of psychedelic art is the beautiful, colorful images that have a surreal feel to it. Such paintings were influenced by hallucinatory drugs such as LSD, Psilocybin, and Mescaline. Surrealistic drawings, brightly colored abstract patterns, detailing, and even morphing using curvilinear calligraphy are used to depict various scenes.

Psychedelic Art in the 1960s
The 1960s’ saw the beginning of the psychedelic movement, which included not only paintings, but also music, fashion, literature, and philosophy. There were many poster artists who used this style of art to create posters for rock groups, to visually display the feeling of getting high. These artists used the basics of psychedelic art – the contrasting colors, illegible hand drawings, and strong optical illusions to produce some incredible artwork. This movement soon became a part of the counterculture of the 1960s. This counterculture was all about people that defied the traditional norms of the society. Psychedelia soon became a common feature in the youth of this period. This term was used to describe not only the art, but also music and fashion. One can also see this term being associated with the hippy culture of the 1960s.

This art soon was used for murals, as designs for album covers, etc. These fantasy forms gained popularity by the end of the 1960s. Advertisers caught on to this movement and used the basics of psychedelic art to promote their products. These bright colors and swirling forms were considered appropriate for packaging various products.

Prominent Psychedelic Designers
Wes Wilson was one of the most famous psychedelic artists of the time. His work is symbolic of the peace movement and the 60s. He is prominently known for creating a psychedelic font which made the letters look like they are swirling or melting.

Another great artist called Victor Moscoso, used the concept of vibrating colors for his psychedelic artwork. The effect was achieved by taking colors from opposite sides of the color wheel and using them in equal brightness and intensity.

Several artists such as Bridget Riley used geometrical shapes to create optical illusions. Such designs widely used grids and patterns of curves and objects that were decreasing in size for maximum effect.

Roy Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol used this kind of art to glamorize common objects, making art more meaningful to the common man, and making art a subject of interest for everybody and not just the elite.

Today, psychedelic art is witnessing many changes. Specific software has made it possible to experiment in this direction. Psychedelic designs are used as album covers for trance music. There are many outlets that cater to specific group of consumers who love to wear T-shirts with such prints. Graphic designers use this as a basis to create beautiful 2 and 3-dimensional forms without the use of drugs. Psychedelic art has created a niche for itself amongst admirers of various styles of art. Well, it surely goes without saying, this art has its own beauty, which transports one to a fantasy land.

Tips to Fabric Painting

Fabric paints can be best used on old clothes that you are about to discard from your wardrobe. In case your interest lies in painting, then take out the stack of old clothes and turn them into wacky and trendy clothing. Pick some fabric painting pens to create detailed pictures or use a fabric spray to color your t-shirt with different colors. Here are few ideas to help you with painting.

Basic Methods of Fabric Painting

  • Fabrics tend to shrink after a wash. Therefore, before painting on it, wash it thoroughly, so that it settles to a certain size.
  • According to the fabric texture, select the appropriate fabric paints. Fabric pens, sprays, tubes make a great choice for making detailed pictures. Even stencils are a great way to get easy and quick designs.
  • Once you have sorted out the designs and paints, arrange the cloth on a hard surface, to assure stability while painting.
  • Once the painting is over, allow the cloth to dry at least for 24 hours.
  • Make sure it still rests on the hard surface, to avoid the paint from smudging.
  • In case the paint is wet even after 24 hours, allow it some more time to dry.
  • Once the paint has completely dried, wash the cloth and allow the left over color to wash out.
  • After thoroughly washing it, iron the cloth, leaving the painted portion.
  • Once the cloth is well ironed it is ready to be worn.

These are the basic methods of painting to help you create some fabric paint designs. In case you have already tried your hand at such an art of painting, then take a look at some more kinds of fabric paintings and learn the tips to experiment with them.

Techniques and Tips for Fabric Painting

Stamp Painting
Stamp painting is very easy way of fabric painting. Ready-made stamps of different patterns and pictures on them make the process quick and easy. These stamps are good for children and for beginners. In order to stamp paint, take a plain cloth and place a cardboard from the inside to keep the surface of the t-shirt wrinkle free and stable. Take the paint of your choice and dip the stamp into the paint and apply on the t-shirt. In case you don’t want to spoil your hands, take a brush, dip it into the paint and apply a thin layer of the paint on the stamp.

Stencils are among the easiest way of creating designs on any fabric. To start with, select the fabric on which you want to paint. Always wash the fabric before painting to keep the surface free from dirt and dust. There are many stencils available in the market especially made for the purpose of fabric painting. You can even create your own unique stencils to make your designs more customized. Stencils should be cut out from a hard surface as they remain stable during the process of painting. Place the stencil on the cloth and begin to fill in the gaps by fabric paints. Keep the paint moderately thick, so that it doesn’t flow from beneath the stencil. Fabric paints take time to dry. Therefore, allow the paint to dry for 24 hours and then slowly remove the stencil.

The Psychology of Painting

Van den Steinen is mentioned by Henri Delacroix in his essay entitled “The Psychology of Art” (“Psychologie de l’art”), when referring to the study of some Brazilian tribes and how they envisioned the whole process of painting. Den Steinen expressed the idea, the genius of visual arts resides in the gesture of imitating. This is most obviously noticeable, in his opinion, in the primitive man’s act of quickly drawing the sketch of an animal in motion or expressing a certain attitude. This sketch is almost the continuation of a gesture, and the gesture is almost the continuation of the perception’s constitutive movements.

There are two types of languages within this process of imitation: an abstract language and the vivid, concrete language of art itself. An artist’s writing actually originates in the child’s or the primitive man’s way of drawing. According to Delacroix, childhood age analysts have noticed some specific things. Thus, when observing a child who draws, there are certain elements that may be taken into account. A child who draws has two tendencies: a descriptive tendency and an indicative tendency. In most circumstances, a child uses drawing as a means of indicating a certain place or thing that has made an impression on him. As Rouma once put it, a child’s act of drawing could be considered similar to producing a sort of graphic language. As they grow up, many children develop some other tendencies which are usually typical of drawing beginners, such as the tendency to describe. This may result from the child’s effort to dominate his intellectual scheme and to reach the object’s concrete reality. Then the child can launch onto the synthetic representation of the whole, upon the exact pointing out of the details, or upon the attempt to create the perfect construction. Of course, there are many imperfections at first.

Primitive art also oscillates between schemes and imageries. The concrete realism and the vivid expression of reality sometimes make their way through the abstract conventionalism, by defying the abusive stylization which tends to turn art into a rather intellectual combination of elements. The primitive artist actually discovered colors and landscapes at the exact time he discovered lines and contours. There was no psychological or chronological priority in this respect. In those ancient times, decorative arts implied a certain sense of regularity and proportion. Among the most frequent forms of decorative art of the primitive age, one could definitely mention face painting. Delacroix says that even the incisions made during the process of creating a visual art piece had a certain rhythm for the primitive man.

Imitation, pointing out, self-exposure were all combined at the very beginnings of visual arts. It’s most obvious that visual arts developed its techniques and conquered its means of expression only gradually. We most certainly can feel the difference between Greek primitive sculpture and that of the great epochs, between a primitive and a modern painting. But no matter what the differences in the techniques used and especially in their improvements, visual arts operate upon certain basic data, and their relation to the artist’s intention can help create the aesthetic and artistic pleasure.

The components of painting are on one hand, drawing and shape, and on the other hand, light and colors. The shape of things can very much influence our practical behavior and our calculating intelligence. Philosophers have clearly expressed the connection between geometry and practical, day-to-day life. The same as colors, shapes also can influence our state of mind and way of thinking. For instance, a round room can create a sensation of space and freedom of spirit that a right-angled room may lack, and so on.

Greek painters were very much relying on beautiful shapes. Their painting style resembled sculpting. Words like: contour, line, feature, plan, elevation, section, weight, caliber, profile, silhouette, scheme, and so on, served to designate a shape, when this shape was effectively limited by a certain trajectory. Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres, a neoclassical French painter, said that painting makes up three quarters and a half of what the actual paining supposes. Drawing is more than merely representing contours. The line, which helps represent certain shapes, is an abstraction of the model.

Ways Spray Paint Art

A Step-by-step Guide for Beginners

Step 1
To begin with, you need a proper ventilated place to practice. You can choose the wall of your compound, a garage, or a driveway for this. Once you have finalized the location, gather all the materials you will need, lay out newspapers or an old cloth at the place, and take out anything you don’t wish to get the paint on.

Step 2
Take the wooden piece or poster board to the place, and tape it onto the wall on the edges, with the help of masking tape or painter’s tape. This will make it easier for you to remove the board or the piece of wood, once you are done with. Before you start working, wear all protective gear to prevent any paint from falling on your body parts. Gloves and face masks are a must, to protect your hands from the paint and also to prevent intake of any hazardous paint fumes.

Step 3
Since you are a beginner, use spray paint cans for your work. Apply pressure with the help of your fingers on the nozzle of the can to control the rate at which paint flows out from it. You can adjust as much as you want, and see the effect it has on the texture and shading of the paint. Apply a coat of paint on the poster board or wooden piece, and cover it with a glossy magazine page on top. When you take off the magazine page, you will have a different texture of paint at the particular spot. In the same manner, make different layers on the painting surface.

Step 4
To incorporate shapes in your art, use normal household materials. You can form circles using cups and glasses; squares and rectangles can be created using small boxes and so on. Try looking for varied shapes from various daily use items found in your house to create unique and innovative shapes. You can also make use of a stencil.

Step 5
For making straight lines, try using clay-modeling tools. This will also be useful in providing additional texture to your paint. Wood or metal scrapers are useful for making buildings in the painting. You can experiment with these tools by applying many layers of paint on them, and keep learning new ways to make your art more creative.

Points to Consider

  • While purchasing cans, ensure that you purchase ones of the similar brand. Also, pick up as many colors as possible to make your artwork more lively.
  • When you set out for doing your artwork, wear old clothes, or clothes used often so that you don’t feel bad, even though they get dirty.
  • Make sure you wear rubber gloves and a face mask to prevent hands from getting wet in paint and also to avoid inhaling any toxic fumes.
  • It is advised that pregnant women and people suffering from respiratory disorders keep away from doing any spray paint art.
  • While you are still a beginner, don’t rush into practicing all possible techniques. Take it slowly, and gradually move on to complex methods, once you are comfortable with the basic stuff.