Tag Archives: Visual arts

Social Media, All These Years In

Made via iPhone with Decim8The way I’ve come to use social media lately is for curation, news and making new connections. Whereas a few years ago it was more about keeping in touch with friends and entertainers, these days, it’s as much a means of collecting and discovery, particularly now that I’m active in visual art more so now than back then. I remember doing my first MySpace page about 10 years ago now, and putting customized CSS in the “about me” section to alter the design. Ah, memories.

I wonder if in the decades to come, the term will seem outdated, as online connections simply become, “media.”

Have you found the way you participate in, or use social media has evolved over the past, say, five years? Has it become more integrated into your routine or other activities? Let us hear from you in the comments.

Dream Theater After Uelsmann: Learning From The Masters

So I thought it would be fun to do another photomontage along the lines of my favorite visual artist, the amazing Jerry Uelsmann. Here’s my version of one of his works:

Dream Theater After Uelsmann

“Dream Theater After Uelsmann”
Click to view in high-resolution (way more interesting than the size shown here)

Here’s the original by Jerry Uelsmann:

Dream Theater by Jerry Uelsmann

Dream Theater by Jerry Uelsmann, 2004.

And here are my source images, all photographed by me over the last few years, with links to the full-size versions:

Originals for Dream Theater After Uelsmann

Original photos by me. Click for full size view.

Uelsmann is The Man

I hope to make it abundantly clear that the inspiration and vision for this image is 100% Uelsmann — I take no credit for the origination of the composition, and I’ve made efforts to make this clear in a number of places. My effort here is strictly a study of technique and a visual challenge, with full respect and homage to someone who inspires me. It was fun to do, and I’m pleased with the result.

What do you think? Have you ever photographed, drawn or painted after one of the masters or someone who inspires you? What was the outcome? Where do you go for inspiration? How does that take shape? Let us hear from you in the comments.

Artwork Feature at Xaxor.com

Many thanks to XAXOR for featuring my photomontage art today! The lead image is my experiment in understanding the work of  Jerry Uelsmann, documented here at “Learning from the Masters.”

Xaxor.com features my artwork today

My art featured at Xaxor.com. Click to view. See more of my art at RSMITHINGS.com.

I happened upon XAXOR.com by way of Pinterest, and enjoy the mountain of interesting visuals there – all neatly arranged in categories. The site describes itself as, “a gallery of the most awesome pictures online. Our frequently updated database contains over 40,000 articles and 1 million photos.” Definitely worth a look if you’re into that kind of thing.

Belief in the One True Power: Foto Fridays

Belief in the One True Power

Belief in the One True Power
Click for full-size at 500px

Here’s a photomontage I did recently using my iPhone and some choice apps. I was visiting the Grove Arcade in Asheville, NC a few weeks ago and noticed the sunlight looking interesting around this stairwell, so I snapped a black & white with Hipstamatic. Later in the week a gnarled tree trunk in my neighborhood caught my attention, so I snapped that.

Click to see the ingredients at Flickr

I knew I wanted to do something with the tree and the stairwell, but it looked incomplete when editing just those in Photoforge2, so I snapped a candle that happened to be burning when I was working on this. Finally, I added some texture with the TtV Photo Studio app, then some magic from the universe… and there we go.

But What Does it Mean?

The title of this image is from a lyric in a song by one of my favorite bands, The Deftones, titled, “Pink Cellphone.” It’s an airy, dark, and experimental-sounding track – qualities also applicable to this image, so I thought it was an appropriate fit. It’s not my intent to promote any belief an any kind of power whatsoever. I just like the sound of the song and the pairing with the image.

If there is any one true power as far as this kind of thing goes, it’s the brilliant photomontage work of Jerry Uelsmann. If you like my humble creation here, definitely check out his stuff. This piece in particular reflects my appreciation for his art.

Thanks to Mitzi Rice, who suggested this image for blog fodder over at Instagram. Check out her blog, Mit Lear Moments.

What do you think? Ever made a photomontage? Do you see a connection between visual art and music? Let us hear from you in the comments.

Pinterest for Instagram Images

S I N C E   U P D A T E D – You might also like:
>> Link Instagram and Pinterest with Flickr <<


How to post Instagram Images on Pinterest

how to use pinterest with instagramYou probably already know that Instagram and Instagram-web-interface sites like Gramfeed are great tools for discovering amazing images, sharing your own creations and connecting with others through visual art. And you’ve probably also heard about the social and image-sharing website Pinterest, with its incredible growth as another medium for sharing and discovering based on compelling visuals.

Here’s a basic guide to using Instagram and Pinterest together that will help you share what you like on Instagram with others on Pinterest. This also will show you some best practices for crediting Instagram artists for their work, which is not only proper etiquette for Pinterest, but is the right thing to do whenever sharing any artwork anywhere.

If you find this useful, share it on Twitter — thanks!

There are already plenty of resources on how Pinterest works beyond the scope of what’s covered here, so this post will assume you have a basic understanding of Pinterest and an account there.

Post Instagram to Pinterest?

Can you pin pictures from instagram? Absolutely. To link Instagram to Pinterest is just a matter of selecting what to share, and pinning the right way. Now, let’s get started sharing the great images you already like on Instagram at Pinterest, with the help of Gramfeed.

Use Gramfeed & Always Give Credit

Gramfeed is not only a great way to participate on Instagram via the web, but it also gives you a convenient way to share and properly credit Instagram images on Pinterest. And it’s easier than you might think, for your own images as well as those of other Instagramers. Just follow these five steps:

  1. Open the image at full size to pin on Pinterest.

    Open the image at full size to pin on Pinterest.

    Browse in Gramfeed to a photo of your own you’d like to pin, or photos you have liked. “My Likes” in Gramfeed’s top menu is a good place to start — since you already like those images.

  2. Click on the photo you would like to share on Pinterest to open it at full-size view.
  3.  

  4. VERY IMPORTANT –  Pin directly from the image’s Gramfeed page. Just click the red “Pin it” button in the lower right corner on the image’s page.

    EASIEST WAY TO PIN IMAGES FROM INSTAGRAM: Using Gramfeed, just click on the photo you like and click the “Pin It” button to the lower right of the image. Select a board, and pin away. Click for larger view.

     

    Do NOT just pin the small thumbnail images from the list page using the Pinterest tool you may have installed on your browser. If you only share from a page of small preview images, the links associated with your pins will not work, and Pinterest viewers can’t click through to the original sources. By sharing from the full-size image page, visitors can click through your pin to the artist’s actual page, thus giving the proper credit to the owner – while also showing a beautiful full-sized image instead of a small preview. This is important, since larger images get more repins on Pinterest.

    If you pin this way, you're doing it wrong. Artists won't get credit and images will be way small.

     

  5. Finally, to give proper credit where it is due, I suggest you copy the artist name from their photo page and then paste that into the comments box of your pin with something like, “From Instagram by Instagramer-name-here.” You will then have given full credit to the artist whose work you are sharing, and lessen the chance that others may accuse you of stealing or taking credit for someone else’s work. Here’s an example of how I’m doing this with my own Pinterest board I’m calling “Instagram Magic.” Note how all images link to the creators of the images and mention them on the pins.

Bonus Points: since Pinterest is more fun and you will gain more followers by interacting, try to say a few words about what it is that makes the photo special to you. Do you like the contrast, subject matter, or apps used? Say so in the comments when you’re giving credit and ask others what they think. Pretty soon, you’re likely to get comments and start discussions with other like-minded folks on the site.

Pinterest Boards for Instagram Categories

Pinterest is a great way to categorize images you find on Instagram. Just do a search in Gramfeed for a subject you’re passionate about, then set up a new board when pinning those images (while always giving credit). Do this a few times, and before you know it, you’ll have several visually-rich Pinterest boards with your favorite images, and you’ll be establishing yourself as a Pinterest pro.

What do you think? Are you on Pinterest and/or Instagram? Do you have any suggestions on how to share images through Pinterest? Let us hear from you in the comments!

Blog Post Artwork

This post is kind of about art, kind of about technology, and hey, there’s even a link referenced about music. But mainly… it’s about writing. That’s the great thing about having your own blog: you make the rules.

Beats Antique A Rosy Photo Edit Tutorial Contrasts Make Connectionss
Digital Ancestry - KITT Wallpaper Moth Drama Cheap Trick In Color 1998
Blogging About Blogging Photography, Technology, and Connections in the Name of Art Insect Photography Tips

Though I’m going to go on about these images, I consider this post to be about writing since all the above visuals were created specifically to promote blog posts (linked in the above images). One thing I enjoy doing to promote my posts, even though results are limited – but fun when they happen (see comments here) is to create images with text and visuals on my phone hyping the posts via Instagram.

iPhone Text Apps

I use the apps Phonto and Labelbox to overlay text onto images created using something from the posts. Having been a graphic designer for years, producing advertisements, brochures, order forms, whatever… it’s amazing to me to have not only such image editing capability at my thumbs via my iPhone, but now to be able to put together decent layouts with text as well.

It’s Like Flyers for Your Blog

I got my start in graphic design by creating flyers for my various bands’ gigs (more on that here), so whipping up these mini-promos comes naturally. I also like the limitations of the square format, the imprecise-yet-as-precise-as-allowable ethos of dragging text around with your fingertips, the instant gratification of working in such small file sizes, and the direct connection to principles of graphic design.

Your Mission, Should You Choose to Accept…

I challenge anyone reading this who hasn’t done so to create a layout using these tools and not encounter considerations of space, hierarchy of information and typesetting (and maybe, just maybe, have fun in the process). If you do this for the first time, definitely come back here and comment with a link to your artwork and details on how you did it.

It’s part of my designer thinking to consider typography, negative space, flow and whatnot, so doing this as a complement to blog posts is a rewarding outlet. I’ve noticed a few others on Instagram doing similar stuff, and I nearly always check out the posts if the visuals are cool enough. Below are some more examples by Maddy McCoy, aka The_Real_McCoy of the MadAboutPixls blog. Great stuff there about mobile art; check ‘em out.

What do you think? Would seeing visuals like this leave you inclined to click through to a blog post? Have you ever created layouts with text and images on your phone? If so, what apps do you use and what has your experience been like? Let us hear from you in the comments!