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Thursday, February 28, 2013

Exhibition in AKVART, Finland

Welcome to our 2-persons exhibition with Liisa Kuusisto in AKVART gallery in Helsinki, Finland, that will take place on 11.03 - 24.03, Humolistonkatu 1, Helsinki.

Konstantin Sterkhov. Coincidental. 35x53 cm. 2012

Liisa Kuusisto. Landing. 2012.

The opening is 11.03.2013 at 17.00.

My Demo at Paper World Middle East

Dubai International Convention & Exhibition Centre, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

If you happen to be in Dubai on 5-6 of March welcome to see my watercolor demonstration at the Stand 3B40 at the Paper World Middle East Exhibition. My new DVDs and book are available. I will also represent my new signature brushes.


Monday, February 25, 2013

Lars Lerin Museum

Someone might remember my interview with Lars Lerin posted here last year. It was tricky to get that one and I still had many questions... Last week I had an opportunity to ask my questions to Lars personally. I was invited to have a watercolor master-class in a Folk University (don`t know the name) which was arranged in the same city where Lerin had his museum. The time for the interview was settled and when we came to the museum Lars was there. Actually I was anxious to see his painting close-up but first it happened that I started asking my questions. Some of them were prepared and some came up spontaneously.

Konstantin Sterkhov and Lars Lerin. Interview.

After the talk I rushed to the painting with my old camera. Sorry if the quality is low, but however I am using a chance to share my impressions from his stunning work and informal way of exhibition.

Lars Lerin. 150x450 cm

First of all Lars I would like to thank you from all watercolor lovers for this break through - there are not so many art museums dedicated entirely to watercolor medium. I think your museum may counted a small victory of watercolor movement. How came the idea of the museum?
It was my father and a man from a community who suggested... this place was for sale and we decided to move here.

Does it have a certain purpose?
It is just to show my art and to arrange some guest exhibitions.

Lars Lerin. 100x150 cm

You are a public figure. Does the public attention help or disturb your creative process?
It doesn`t matter to me because i have a possibility to close the door.

You are well known in Sweden and Scandinavian countries. Do you consider yourselves a part of the Global watercolor community?
I don`t think so. I am not familiar to other artists. Connection might be... perhaps through subjects.

Lars Lerin. 150x100, 150x300, 150x300cm

Are you interested in other artists commitments? Can you appreciate an art style different from yours?
Yes, very much! I don`t like things similar to my own style. I like when people do something from the heart, not from skill.

In which art do you express yourselves more complete - in writing or in painting?
Painting is my home... but I do write a lot every day, maybe two hours...

Lars Lerin. 300x150 cm

Do you belong to a certain generation?
No, I don`t.

Do you feel something like your "mission" in art?
No, it is more a mission for myself to have a good life, peace in my heart...

Lars Lerin. 100x150 cm x 3

Do you have some aim to achieve in art or it is mainly self-expression?
It is my self-expression. The aim is a better work. It is not a carrier that motivates.

Do you consider your art approach more classical or avantgarde?
I don`t want to categorize myself.

Lars Lerin

Is it important to keep and maintain art heritage?
It is important both old and new. You can`t stay isolated. It is good to have connection to the heritage and to learn from that too.

What is your attitude to your painting when it is complete? Does it change with the time?
It can often change. I often come back and paint something that was already exhibited, the paper is strong and allows it.

Lars Lerin`s Museum

There is a strong dramatic feeling in your painting. Is it your perception of life?
Yes. Tomorrow maybe no.

Lars Lerin

How do you handle a large painting technically?
On a ping-pong table.

Lars Lerin. Sketches, copper print

Which paints do you run out first of all?
I will not say.... Ok, different blacks, ocher and french ultramarine.

Lars Lerin

What paper do you use?
Arches, 640 gm, rough in sheets...

Lars Lerin.

Do and donts in watercolor in your version?

Friday, February 15, 2013

Anders Zorn Museum

Last year while we had a painting course in Dalarna we visited the Museum of Anders Zorn who played a huge role in the culture of Sweden. Apart from his amazing painting he collected art and supported all kinds of craft from the Swedish villages. I was impressed by his house-museum where everything was kept as if the master was there. But I would like to attract your attention to his watercolors, of course...!

Anders Zorn 35x46. Clarence Barker.1885

Anders Zorn. 66.5x50.5. 1887

Anders Zorn.Humburg Port.170x116. 1891

Ander sZorn. Landscape Study

Anders Zorn. Miss Law. 1885. 35x25

Anders Zorn. Our Daily Bread. 68x102. 1886

Anders Zorn. White Lilies. 63x89

Anders Zorn. Reveil, Boulevard Clichy. 36x24. 1892

Zorn`s Museum

House of Zorn

Akvarellcenter in Dalarna, Sweden

A working plan of the Akvarellcenter in Dalarna, Sweden for 2013. As always there is a very interesting programs with a huge variety of international instructors. Unfortunately in Swedish)

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Z-cat and R-cat

Look at these cats...

Joseph Zbukvic. Cat.

Vladimir Roumyantsev. My God, It`s Me!

Adisorn Pornsirikarn - Thailand

Lately I saw this master`s works quite often. Every time my attention pick them up from the constantly added posts.

Adisorn Pornsirikarn

Adisorn Pornsirikarn. Step-by step

Adisorn Pornsirikarn. Step-by step

Adisorn Pornsirikarn 35x56 cm

Monday, February 4, 2013

Mary Whyte Interview

I got this interview something half-a-year ago but then it happen that Mary considered that she is not participating my Interview Book project, so I am not sure if I can use her work images she sent me. For the illustration please visit her web page She is an extraordinary master!

Mary Whyte

Have you always been painting with watercolors?
I have painted in watercolor since I was a teenager.  Although I have studied many other techniques and mediums, my favorite has always been watercolor.

Did you have someone who influenced you as an artist?
I studied art at the Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and for a year in Rome, Italy.  Although I had many painting instructors, there really was not one that was particularly influential, because I could not find someone who could teach me watercolor.  I ended up having to learn watercolor on my own, by going to museums and studying the work of artists such as Wyeth, Homer and Sargent.

How did you come to the major subject of your painting?
I have always loved painting people.  Most of the people I paint live near where I live, and their familiarity makes them especially appealing to me as models.  In my recent museum exhibition called Working South I painted ordinary working people.  I found it exciting to paint people that I didn't know, and in environments that were unusual.

Do you always work with live models?
I believe the best way to paint is always from a live model.  However, working from life is not always possible, because most people do not have the time or patience to pose for such extended periods of time.   Therefore, I do have to rely on photographs, working sketches, and painting from memory in order to accomplish my paintings.

How do you work on composition?

I arrive at my compositions by first doing a series of small thumbnail pencil sketches.  Sometimes I might do as many as twenty small sketches before I arrive at a composition that I feel has the emotion and concept I am looking for. 

Do you finish a painting in one session?
I often do preliminary studies from life, which are done in one session.   However, most of my large paintings are done in my studio over a period of days or weeks.

Would you recommend to rather leave the painting unfinished than overdone it?

With watercolor there is little room for error.  Every correction takes something away from the painting's freshness, so I plan my paintings carefully.  I would much rather have a painting with an unfinished look than have a watercolor that is overworked.  Once a painting is overworked I tear it up and start over.

Most of your portraits tell a story. Do you believe that the painting might have a value only by it`s painting qualities?
My paintings are often described as being narrative, meaning that they tell a story.  I think every good painting should be engaging enough that it tells a story, but if an image tells too much, it becomes an illustration.  First and foremost, a painting must appeal to the senses.  Then the painting can tell whatever story the artist wishes.

What paper, paints and brushes do you use?

I use Arches 300 pound cold press paper.  My kolinsky brushes are of my own design and are made by from Columbia, South Carolina.  The pigments I prefer are M. Graham and Company.

How you can explain the new blossoming of the realistic Art?
Realistic art seems to be getting more attention these days.  When I went to art school in the 70's there was very little attention paid to drawing skills or to representational art.  Now there are dozens of traditional art school world wide, offering students a wonderful opportunity to study more advanced methods.

How we can keep the watercolor media in spotlight – your suggestion?
It has always been difficult keeping watercolor in the spotlight, because the medium has always been viewed as a "lightweight" compared to oils or tempera.  We need more schools treating watercolor as a serious medium, and more galleries willing to put works on paper on their walls.

Meeting Escoda

During my visit to Frankfurt Creative World show I was delighted to meet some members of Escoda family - two Ricards and Mark. I`ve got a new set of Cembranelli`s signatures brushes and spent some time discussing the ways of  marketing art brushes. Ocasionally Ricard passed by my stand were I was demonstration at that moment, and spent some time by watching the demo. The demo picture found its place at the stand of Escoda. I am sure everyone remembers that Escoda produces an exquisite art brushes including the signature brushes of Joseph Zbukvic, Alvaro Castagnet, Nicholas Simmons, Charles Reid, Fabio Cembranelli.

Impressive series of travel brushes here:

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Best Watercolor Paper Ever

They really keep to traditions! One of the oldest manufacturers of the paper for artists, they have everything kept as it was in XVII century when it was started. Even the machine making paper is over 100 y.o.

The Saunders Waterford lovers can enjoy the new High White series including all the varieties of this paper. I met the team of this manufacturer in Frankfurt at the Creative World exhibition. We talked about the paper, artists experience and Hot Fuzz / Sean Of The Dead those were shot exactly at the village where the factory is situated...)

St. Cuthberts Mill`s stand at the exhibition.