Archive for the ‘Promoting the Creative World’ Category

Not So Quick Study

Thursday, January 25th, 2007

composition for a non-specific subject

Quick Study 2 - Dan Beck - digital painting for art prints - 2007

Quick Study 2 – Dan Beck – digital painting for art prints – 2007

The process of creating is almost always interesting. By the time I got to this stage, this digital painting was no longer a quick study… but it did start out that way.

I have had enough of an absence from painting – that I did not want to retrieve a subject – this is no place in particular – something I do from time to time – but it definitely is here.

I am happy with the composition – the eye-flow – the richness of color and the feeling it evokes.

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Art and Audience

Tuesday, January 16th, 2007

compulsory connection and continual challenge

All That Jazz - Digital Painting - 2006 - Dan Beck

All That Jazz – digital painting / art prints – 2006 – Dan Beck

I happened upon an article today – actually it happened upon me by having ages ago signed up for related stories at

The story is about how it isn’t enough to be a good musician, one must make oneself heard – creating or developing venues as necessary.

Art is no different I think – it is not enough just to create wonderful art – it must be viewed. By its very nature, all art requires an audience; and even the artist as audience, though sometimes sufficient, views in the context of his own culture.

But having said all that it doesn’t make it easier for an artist to both have to pioneer with his art and with creating his own audience – they are sadly not always compatible.

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Self Portrait

Wednesday, January 10th, 2007

a traditional subject with some prompting

Self Portrait - Dan Beck - digital painting - 2007

Self Portrait – Dan Beck – digital painting 2007

I was asked to do my self portrait. An artist friend of mine was interested in seeing how I would deal with the face I think. Seeing all the color in my work made him wonder – since (I am guessing) most of his current work is about portraiture.

So there I am – with the obligatory somewhat troubled artistic look – not that I am happy all the time – but probably more than appears here.

But then again, I think this is accurate to how I view myself when I am alone – there is intensity and desire for something better – but there is also a slight smile.

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Digital Dirt

Thursday, January 4th, 2007

movement and color for a field in the hand

Field Hand - digital painting - art prints - Dan Beck 2006

Field Handdigital painting – art prints – Dan Beck 2006

I am realizing that this is the last piece of last year for me. I wanted to take the concept of the man with dirt in his hand to another level.

Obviously, I could not resist the Field Hand pun. I worked on this piece quite a lot – sometimes a mistake as many will attest. But I don’t really care about that today. Suffice it to say that although the piece was fun – it did not come easily.

As a result, I am not sure if I hooked it or not – but I do know that there is a great deal of movement and a great deal of color …

and I think Marc Chagall would be pleased -certainly not the same but quite reminiscent.

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Colors of Winter

Wednesday, December 27th, 2006

capturing the blues and browns – the hurdles of painting after a break

Winter Colors - digital painting / art prints - Dan Beck 2006

Winter Colorsdigital painting / art prints – Dan Beck 2006

This is my first painting in quite some time – a few weeks anyway. It is fascinating how the urge to create works.

On the one hand, one feels a kind of craving than is difficult to describe – but then for lack of practice – it feels enormous just to get started.

Deciding what to paint or what size – all these things seem big. Being creative like most things is about striking a balance – being relaxed enough to not care about mistakes – but still be able to create with the importance a piece deserves.

To create this digital painting, I drew from things I have been seeing over the last few weeks.  Today, it is not the piece I thought it was yesterday – but it has captured the blues and browns of winter in the Salinas Valley.

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Sky’s in Disguise

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006

maintaining feeling of dramatic sky

DeSkies - Digital Painting - Dan Beck 2006

Enlarge DeSkies – Digital Painting / Art Prints – 2006

I am feeling a little hidden – winter hibernation perhaps – working too hard on what seems a futile website reconstruction – and thought – this piece with a pun on disguise kind of fits the bill.

It also looks a bit like my hair these days, not that anyone should care. But what I like about this piece more than the word play was that I was able to take a dramatic sky – portray it dramatically – portray it abstractly – but portray it much as I experienced it.

The painting was a success from the standpoint of problem solving – from the standpoint of wanting to live with – I can’t speak for anyone other than myself.

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Digital Fun, Digital Alterations

Thursday, December 14th, 2006

creative process, making things one own

do you want to be notified? image

New notifications image

Well … this is not an example of fine art – rather a quick piece of play to replace a stock image for the Outhouse Studios shopping cart.

I am sure whoever created them meant well – they aren’t all bad – in fact, I left a couple a bit enlarged – and altered a few others.

Like most creative folks, I don’t like to just leave things alone. I like to make adjustments, I like to leave my mark, I like the process of getting something to look and feel right.

The above digital piece was fun … and that of course is a big part of being creative and why it is such a big thing.

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Improvising Art

Tuesday, December 12th, 2006

Creativity, Problem Solving, and Planting the Creative Seed

trying to be new?

digital play – trying to portray "What’s new?"

I read an article today about prisoners who in their need for creativity and having no art supplies used coffee, fruit, chocolate etc to impart color – in some cases using their own hair to create a brush.

I have always felt that necessity is a great part of the creative process – improvising, making do, finding another way. Creativity is about problem solving.

For most of us, we have to create some of our own limits to emulate this kind of creativity.  On the other hand – without any exposure like many growing up these days – there aren’t enough crayons for kids to even plant the creative seed.

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Creative Control

Tuesday, December 5th, 2006

implementing one’s style – being open to what’s not

Forgotten Password Image

Quick digital image – for Forgotten Password

Being creative is both about being controlling and being accepting. It is an interesting mix. For there are many times when accepting the seemingly accidental is the best move.

The creative person by necessity makes his mark on the world by communicating his or her perspective.

In the process of rebuilding the shopping cart database for my website, I have felt the obligation not just to get it working but also to make the stock images be unique.

There are things I need to let be – because of time considerations – but I find myself changing most everything – even if it is quickly.

I just can’t help it – who wants to be the same?

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An Abstract Painting Flowing with Change

Wednesday, November 22nd, 2006

freedom and adaptation

First Big - digital painting / art prints - Dan Beck 2003

First Bigdigital painting / art prints – Dan Beck 2003

I have resisted featuring this digital painting for a couple of reasons. First, I never felt it was that strong of a work – even though I like it enough to have framed it and enough to have it as part of the Abstract Art Gallery.

But more importantly – since its placement on the web, it has received too many hits for people looking for something quite different than what I am offering.  Oh well … and "gay" was an excellent word for happy for many years – such usage is tricky at best these days.

This piece is about change and rolling with it – a good reminder for me these days. The piece was as large a template as I could create with the program I paint with – thus the title. The first marks were done with black and opaque color – the default settings of the program –

but I chose to go with it – not caring that it was not the way I normally worked … and I think it is that kind of flowing freedom that I love about this work.

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