Art on Sale!

11 09 2011

I’ve up a number of my art pieces on sale at 50% off the gallery prices.   Prices are without shipping, but I’m also willing to split shipping prices 50%.  Please check them out at


Tea House #3


New Piece – Wapiti and Flowers

8 06 2010

Just finished my latest piece, Wapiti and Flowers.  I hope you like it.  Again, my source material was in my back yard.

Changing Printers

5 04 2010

I have not verified this but it appears that GRI Studios is out of business.   A new printer set up by an old GRI printer, Ray Snyder is   I’ve not tried them yet but will report once I do.

Time to Railroad

24 10 2009

“Engineering is the art of the practical and depends more on the total state of the art than it does on the individual engineer. When railroading time come you can railroad — but not before. Look at poor Professor Langley, breaking his heart on a flying machine that should have flown — he had put the necessary genius in it — but he was just a few years too early to enjoy the benefit of collateral art he needed and did not have. Or take the great Leonardo da Vinci, so far out of his time that his most brilliant concepts were utterly unbuildable.” – R.A. Heinlein

What does the above quote have to do with art? I would suggest that not only is engineering tied to the art of the practice, but so is new media art. Much of new media art and any digital art is totally dependent on the personal computer. Not only did the personal computer have to be invented and made financially accessible to the artist, but the software tools like Adobe Photoshop also needed to be invented and made accessible.

My oldest digital art, cica 1986

My oldest digital art, cica 1986

When I first started teaching digital art 20 years ago, what could be created was very limited. I was using Deluxe Paint which had very limited tools, and the resolution and colors I had available to me were just as limited. And then there was the problem of taking a digital image and putting it into physical form. There was no one at the time that specialized in this and certainly home printers could not do this. For my first art show that showed my digital work, I had to go to one photography company to have an interneg shot of my digital fine, and then go to a second company to print the interneg on photo paper. It was an awkward process and I could only do it because I had access to a large cities recourses (this was before the commercial Internet). The point is that I was trying to create art before the art of the practical was there.

Art from my original art show, circa 1990.

Art from my original art show, circa 1990.

Today with my current art I am still dependent on the state of the art and practical. There are three major technological components to my art. The first is creating my source material. My primary source is virtual worlds, but I also use digital photography. Technologies that have come into their own only in the last five years. I then depend on my software tools like Photoshop. The foundations for these tools have been around for perhaps 20 years (as can be seen by my early art) but only in the last few years have they become so powerful of tools. Finally, my art is dependent on the printing process, i.e. Giclée printing, and again that is a very new technology.

Art from my first art show, circa 1990

Art from my first art show, circa 1990

The point is that I could not create my art until it was time to railroad. But it is now time to railroad.


Letting Art Grow

17 10 2009

I think I have mentioned this in previous blogs, but I have been wrestling with how I manage my art work. One of the characteristics I’m seeing in my art is that I am never quite done with any piece of my art. Yes, I know that many say that one should say this piece is FINISHED and then move on to a new piece. But why? Why cannot art works continue to grow and change over time?

I think this will be or even must be a characteristic of my art. I cannot imagine stopping with any piece. There are too many ideas to explore.  For example, below are two different versions of the same piece.   Both I think are exceptional art in their own right, but each works with the same source material.

Cherry Blossom 01-F1

Version 1 of Cherry Blossom #1

Version 2 of Cherry Blossom #1

Version 2 of Cherry Blossom #1

As such, I am going to use the term ‘Version’ to designate a release of my art. Each version will by definition be unique and reflect different ideas and explorations of the work over time.

I probably could not do this if I was working with a fixed physical media like oils or watercolors, but since digital never degrades, and allows for multiple versions, it works well for my media.

This approach will also give me a solution in how my art can be made available. Some versions I can release as single unique physical works that I control through the Giclée printing processes for which there are no copies, and other versions I can release to digital printing houses for multiple releases.


Giclée Printing and Printers

4 10 2009

Tea House #3 coming out of printer

Giclée (pronounced zhee-CLAY) printing is basically a fancy form of ink jet prints. But what a fantastic form, with Giclée one can create fantastic archival original prints or fantastic reproductions that pretty much blow away any printing methodology before. Given a high quality pigment ink and high quality canvas or paper, the result will be a museum quality piece.

Prices and quality vary a great deal. For a 24×36″ canvas framed on 3/4″ stretcher bars, you may be talking anywhere from $60 to over $250. Depending on where you are in the art pecking order, that is either cheap or a huge cut of your margins when you sell a piece.

So far, I have had experience with three different printers, and would like to pass on my experience. All of these printers support internet and mail order.

Winkflash (

24x36x.75 framed with shipping – About $62 including shipping when a sale comes around, otherwise about $98.

This is a huge company that seems geared to turning the crank. There is no information on the quality of inks or canvas, but I have found them to be poor. In addition, I have had problems with any large prints including warped frames, poor stretching, flaking paint, and creases in the canvas. Seems to take about 3 weeks. Poor customer service (never responded to my problem emails, canceled a 6 piece order 3 weeks after it had been made because one image was of a nude). Although they are the cheapest when on sale, I do not recommend them.

Canvasprinters (

24x36x.75 framed with shipping – About $110 including archival inks.

Seems to be a small operation. I managed to hit them for a print the very week they were moving, so there were some delays although I got my print in two weeks. The quality of the print seemed good, but the shipping seemed a little shoddy (the print was wrapped in an old pillow case). Personal customer support. I did send in another order today to see how they would do after their move. I tentatively recommend them.

GRI Studios (

24x36x.75 framed with shipping – About $140 with archival inks and UV spray.

For me, they are a great printer, since they are only a 20 minute drive from my home. They sell themselves as craftsmen, and even sign their work. This might even translate into an ability to sell your art for a little more money. I had problems with my first printing from them (too dark) and they worked with me to resolve the issues creating a new print for me (no charge). I fully recommend them.


What is medium?

28 09 2009
Cherry Blossom #2

Cherry Blossom #2

This post is tied to one of mine a couple of days ago.   When I took in my art to the LAC show Saturday, I discovered that they had changed the media of my art from ‘Giclée on Canvas’ to ‘Digital’.   Is ‘digital’ a medium?   The dictionary defines medium as “the means of communication”, but another definition defines it as “the material or technique with which an artist works”.

Digital certainly is not the means of communication.   My label of ‘Giclée on Canvas’ describes that.   The final work is physical, not digital.   However, some of my techniques I used in creating the art definitely were digital techniques.    So if technique is the defining term of medium, then perhaps my works are digital.

But digital is such a broad term.   It pretty much defines all communications in the world today (including this blog), and much of it’s art, especially when one considers most film, photography, video, music and printing are digital.   So is it appropriate to label the media of some art works using digital techniques as ‘digital’?