Showing posts with label Art. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Art. Show all posts

01 May 2012

BBB Artist Spotlight: Nolan Haan's Photography

My friend and Fort Lauderdale artist, Nolan Haan, is at it again! If you recall, Nolan paints theses amazing pieces of cinderblock walls....on silk!! Now, he's forayed into talking photos of what he calls "unintended abstractions." I'm in love with the composition, texture, and colors that he captures in his photographs. These would look so amazing blown up, printed on metal, and hung in a loft somewhere in the city.

What I love the most about these photographs is that they show the range and versatility of the artist. Nolan does these ultra-fine cinderblock paintings that are so realistic, your eye is literally tricked to see texture and detail....even though he paints on SILK! Then, he goes completely 180* in his photographs...which are huge macro abstractions.

I've had the privilege of befriending a few artists and just being able to watch their work evolve and be privy to the artistic process makes me so appreciative of what they do. Please stop by and enjoy!

Nolan is selling limited edition prints (10 per edition). Prints are archival, 13x19 inches. Please contact Nolan on his website for further details. 

10 April 2012

James Nares: Still my favorite

When I get stuck in a rut or caught in a hard spot in life, I turn to art as inspiration to keep my thoughts moving forward. Aritist James Nares does just that for me. I've been meditating on this painting for a while because it is fluid, complex, but not too serious all at once. I can get lost in staring at the details which helps calm me when I'm nervy. It's always been my quirky habit to rush right up to a painting to see the details. I want to see exactly how each brush stroke was achieved. Sometimes, I get lost in this observation for a long time (museum docents love me! no!).  Then I take a step back.

When I taking a step back to take in the entire painting, it reminds me to stay in the moment and not get ahead of myself. I think this is a great metaphor for my life as I often do this and get lost in speculating. Observing a painting from several vantage points--up close--pulled back--moving farther away--helps me appreciate every bit of the process.

These paintings are done in a single swoop (you should see his technique!) and there's only once chance to get it right.

Despite this, the paintings come off as relaxed to me. It tells me to relax and trust the process. Each artist has a groove they get into that guides them through completing a painting. We've seen Nicole talk at length about this.

I just love these paintings. For me, they are all about fluidity and the twists and turns life throws at you. Some are planned, others unexpected, but if you take a step back to see the whole picture they're part of something bigger and beautiful.

By the way, how awesome does designer Kara Mann rock the shit out of this interior with that one painting?

06 March 2012

Art updated for #13

I got crazy last week and updated the painting in my room by dumping a whole lot of green paint on the existing canvas. Then I smooshed it around. Let it dry. Hung it back up. And am contemplating.

I think it needs some gold leaf. 

This was what I call Phase 2 of this painting. I had originally drizzled on some paint and it just wasn't enough. 
This was the original, Phase 1. 

19 September 2011

Sunday at MoMa

Went to MoMa yesterday to catch the Willem de Kooning exhibit, which I highly recommend (not pictured here-no photos allowed). I didn't know squat about this amazing artist and emerged from the exhibit full of appreciation for this amazing artist. Mr. de Kooning was constantly evolving; he continually built up and deconstructed his style throughout the course of his life and career. Being able to see his entire body of work allowed you to follow the transformation work by work. 
de Kooning Woman I (MoMa)

Now, what's so interesting is the lesson I learned at McQueen hit me again: in order to deconstruct something, you need to master how to build it. Mr. de Kooning was classically trained starting at a very young age and showed great aptitude. As you work your way around the exhibit, you can see his departure from realism and fine detail to his journey as one of the founding fathers of American Abstract Expressionism.

Wait, I KNOW this guy!!! Recognize something familiar from our shelter mags? (source)

Here are some snaps I took myself during my afternoon at MoMa. I'll be documenting my everyday ish on Instagram @bigbeigebox.

21 July 2011

BBB Artists: Etsuko Ichikawa

I stumbled upon "The Anthropologist" section of and fell in love with another abstract artist.

First, this film is shot and produced beautifully and the score perfectly nestles into the tantalizing footage of Ms. Ichikawa producing her work. You will see in the film that the artist uses molten hot glass to burn paper and create these graceful, organic pieces.

I loved seeing the hot glass burn a pattern into the paper. The glass is so hot it's like it's almost alive, like a moving creature the guides through the paper and then takes it away, rendering it back to glass.

She calls it "fire-smoke." You NEED to see this.

20 June 2011

Art Revamp

Before I left on my business trip last week, I quickly adjusted a painting in my room to reflect my anticipated changes to my bedroom's color palette.

I picked out an accent color at Home Depot weeks ago and decided to throw paint to canvas. Literally. From high up.

 I used a little bit of water to dip the paint brush in and get the paint moving.
 It was supposed to be a systematic process where I'm globbing on paint....which turned to an impatient Pollock-esque mess.
Then, I set the canvas upright and started spraying down the green paint with a spray bottle to make it run. Hey, what can I say? I love drippy paint. 
 In love with this green
The before:
It's good enough for now. I can always wet the canvas down with more water to subdue the green because I used a water-based paint. At the very least it makes me commit to the green.

What do you think?

09 June 2011

AngieJo Makeover of Apt#13 Bedroom: Part 1

This bitch gets a makeover this week in the vein of my inspiration, Angelina Jolie (well, her outfit).
And inspired by: 
This painting by Bri 

I've decided that this painting needs something MORE. Adding my accent color to it will be a great (and cheap!) way to repurpose the piece and give it new life. I'm literally going to THROW the green paint on and see what sticks (pun intended).


PS: its nearly 100* in NYC. Higgins is NOT diggin it. I smell a doggie haircut in the works.

14 May 2011

Apartment inspiration

The meeting with the new roommates went extremely well! I was up all morning brainstorming a look for my room.

This image from the McQueen exhibit at the Met (yes, I'm going SOON) may be it.

05 April 2011

Artists: Nolan Haan Reveals Painting Secrets

As you all know, I'm a big fan of art and an even bigger lover of the creative process. I have many friends who are dancers, painters, and photographers and it's a gift to get a glimpse of what makes them tick. It's often the intent of the work and its influence that's most intriguing. I always want to know what the artist was thinking when he created a piece....and also his stunning technique.

My friend and local Fort Lauderdale artist, Nolan Haan, has started a blog dedicated to giving the reader an inside look into how he creates his art. Nolan is a contemporary artist who does paintings of cinderblock walls in acrylic on silk. I'll say it again, ON SILK. The detail and texture he creates on this medium will blow your mind.

Check out his latest post on how a photo of the painting, "The Wrath of Medusa," prompted him to paint his own version in his signature cinderblock style.

Nolan posts every Sunday with updates on his exhibits, inside info on his technique, and to share his favorite websites.

17 December 2010

Art DIY: Releasing my inner 12 year old.

yep, I made this.

Yesterday I got the fabulous idea to draw pics of my closest girlfriends for Xmas. My goal was to sum up their personal style in a simple croqui and the concept was inspired by the absolutely DARLING stationery at GADABOUT. Since I have not yet given these pressies, I need to keep them under wraps until next week. 

 I also bought some blank greeting cards at Michaels and started drawing jewelry. I found pieces I'd love to buy my girlfriends if I had all the money in the world. I'm going to do some more today and hopefully will have a good stack of Holiday cards for gifting this weekend. 

With that said, you have to hit up Michaels because they have some great coups. Here's the link to 15% off entire purchase or 50% off one item!!

04 November 2010

Art: Off the Wall

In Defense of Graffiti 
acrylic on silk
60 x 40 inches
(142 x 102cm)
Nolan Haan

For the past two-odd years, Higgins has frolicked with a dog named Redford every afternoon, every day of the week. I wanted to share the work of his owner, Nolan Haan. 

Nolan has quite the story. As a recent college grad, he took off to Samoa with the Peace Corps to teach. He ended up filling his time painting portraits of the locals, teaching himself as he went. Nolan found himself sharpening his portraiture chops there and later Indonesia (you need to check out the house he built there) before returning Stateside. 

Back in the States, Nolan found notoriety after entering the Federal Duck Stamp competition on a whim, and found himself immersed in painting various birds. 

Most recently, he has moved into contemporary art which you see here. What you see here is painted ON SILK, people. The texture, the like nothing I've seen before. 

Why cinderblock walls? According to Nolan, 

"I enjoy the challenge of my cinderblock series.  If an artist paints a peacock, for example, the result is a beautiful painting of a beautiful bird. There is little challenge in this. But to make a cinderblock wall compelling or interesting or beautiful--that is rewarding. I have been exploring the range of my cinderblock work for many years now, and still I am intrigued. I love to experiment with the subtleties of surface texture, of mortar and stucco. The variations seem endless. Whether I adorn them with portraiture, prehistoric cave images, or simply abstract fields of color, what draws people in is the cinderblock itself. This common building material has something more to say....  "

Nolan Haan and his work

I'd challenge you today to take a look at something from a new perspective. 

Beauty, intrigue, and creativity are in the eye of the beholder. 

What makes us so absolutely unique as people is no one perspective is the same.

And if you release your own for just one minute, you may be free to see with new eyes.


all images courtesy of

18 October 2010

More Art for Yo Face

Found this guy by perusing The Daily Beast tonight. Here we gooooo....

According to Wikipedia, many of Ian Davenport's works are made using gravity; the artist works are often made by pouring paint over a tilted surface. Dude uses syringes to systematically inject paint on to the canvas....I can't believe I keep finding these artists who create these amazing works with such a simple technique!

Davenport explained his technique last year for The Guardian that he has been challenging the conventions of painting from Day One. 

"I did all the things you're not supposed to do - you aren't meant to put oil paint and water paint together, so that's immediately the first thing I did. "

The artist says that once he discovered painting with syringes, he could concentrate on color and the sequence of color, rather than its placement.  The syringes allow the color to be applied precisely and predictably so he needn't worry about what the paint is going to do. Therefore, the focus is solely on the colors. 

YOU can do this. I can help! Art is affordable if you think outside the box!!

If you'd like to know more about Ian Davenport, try here:

25 September 2010

Artists: A Zevs Follow-Up

image and content from:

Love this. 

"In preparation for his first solo exhibition in Hong Kong’s Art Statements Gallery, Parisian graffiti artist ZEVS decided to take a brief detour a few hours ago for a “bombing” run.  Armed with a ladder, black paint, factitious cleaning crew outfit and barricade tape,  he went on to adorn the signage of CHANEL – Central District flagship store with his signature “Liquidated” motif…  Unfortunately, local law enforcements were notified and ZEVS was arrested soon after these images were taken… No news on whether he’s been release yet or whether he will make it to the opening of the exhibit this Tursday…"

24 September 2010

Quick Fixes: Using Art to Hide Ick



You can't move a circuit breaker. Apartments aren't too keen on you painting over them either.

This was inspired by Christopher Wool and took all of twenty minutes. Nineteen of them were literally waiting for the paint to dry. 

Art Update

Waiting for this to dry.

Hanging in foyer. Updates soon.

Art: Christopher Wool

Bouncing this around in my head all week.
Google this guy. He did the washy grey abstract painting you see in this month's Elle Decor. 
You know, the one with the 11 ft tall model (Hana Soukupova)?
I bought a canvas to cover up the hideous circuit breaker in my foyer. 
Working on something this weekend that marries this with the formalish foyer I've created.

Working on getting the comments working. I hate not being able to hear from you all. 

30 August 2010

Reader's Project: Easy Art

My good friend, Jenn put together what I call "Easy Art" in a matter of minutes and for a little cash.

All materials were bought at Joann Fabrics. The frames were $7.99/each, the scrapbooking paper was $9.99 on sale.

Jenn says that it took all of ten minutes to complete. Now, how's that for some elegance with zero effort??

***If YOU have a project you'd like to show off, please contact me at courtneyvelasco at gmail dot com.***

11 August 2010

More Art for #12

Another Zevs rip off. Sorry, dude.

Had this sent off to a site online that makes gigantic pics.
Frame from Tar-jay, $24 bucks!

I cleaned up my desk for the sake of this photo.
Can anyone suggest a good white lacquered tray for my test crap?

04 August 2010

Grand Finale

Because I can't get/afford this:

Per the artist:
"Of course, there is a graffiti aesthetic to my art but I primarily play with the visual effect. I use the original colours and re-paint the logo with excess. By pouring paint over them, the logo dissolves in front of the viewer’s eyes, drawing attention to, and visually disturbing the recognisable and omnipresent trademark. By doing so, I try to investigate the logo’s visual power. It’s a simple gesture, just as in Aikido when you reverse the power and change the flow of energy." Interview with PingMag, 11 August 2008


Yes, it's not perfect. No, I do not care.

It looks awesome in my hallway.

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