Who is dolceinspiration?

Hi everyone!

My post today will be a little different from my previous ones. Instead of doing a tutorial, I want to tell you a little bit more about who I am as an artist and how I found my passion in art.

Growing up as an only child, I had to find ways to entertain myself. Art was the perfect way to express myself. I would spend hours making cards for imaginary events and making them as realistic as possible by putting fake barcodes on the back. My parents supported my continuous phases of new hobbies, through making jewelry, knitting, crocheting and scrapbooking. By the time I was in Middle School, I had experimented with web design and eventually coded my own subdomain. I taught myself Photoshop and was quite proud when I won the Agenda Cover Design contest at my school in grade nine. It was the first ever graphic design submission. Towards the end of high school, I struggled with trying to decide whether I really wanted to pursue my dream to be an artist or if I should study something more traditionally stable.  My parents supported me more than ever which meant that I had to truly make this decision myself. I have always had a strong passion for visual art but I also have interests in other subjects like English and Biology. I guess I ended up with the best of both worlds since I am now studying towards receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts Honours Specialization, Major in English Language and Literature and a Certificate in Digital Communications.

Art is only limited by a person’s imagination and it means so much more to me than just visual elements on a page. My work allows me to explore new ideas and ways of thinking. It gives me the opportunity to take chances, challenge basic assumptions and build on good ideas to make better ideas. In experimenting with new techniques and creating art that is outside my comfort zone, I am able to accept that there may not only be one answer to every question.

The following video is a short introduction that explains why I started this blog, what I will be writing about and shows a few examples of my own work as an artist:

This blog is like an artistic diary for me. It is an outlet for me to share with you fun craft ideas, to express my own thoughts about how I am growing as an artist and to learn about other artists as well. I still continue to wonder sometimes if I made the right decision to study art, but I know that at the end of the day, no matter if I become a successful artist in the future – what is truly valuable to me are the ways that art reveals things about myself that I didn’t know before and how it constantly pushes me to keep exploring the world around me.

If you don’t know where you’re going, all roads lead there.

– dolceartist 

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Jason-McLean-Jamie-Q-L.O.-Today-Museum-London-art

DIY Envelope Cards and Jason McLean

Hello everyone! It’s been two weeks, but I have a lot to share with you today!

When I visited Museum London a couple of weeks ago, besides seeing Colette Urban’s exhibition, I also had the chance to see a collaborative art exhibition called “L.O. Today”. This exhibition features a group of artists including Marc Bell, James Kirkpatrick, Amy Lockhart, Jason McLean, Jamie Q, Peter Thompson and Billy Bert Young. Most of these artists grew up locally here in London and I have even had the chance of meeting Jamie Q and hear her talk about her own work and her experience with zines. The name of the exhibition stands for “Hello Today” which emphasizes the optimistic energy in this particular show. The art that is displayed ranges from posters, printmaking, sculpture and drawing. This particular exhibition will be running until December 15, 2013 if you’re interested in visiting!

Here are some pictures from the exhibition:

After visiting the exhibition, I did some further research on one of the seven artists, Jason McLean. The first time I encountered his artwork was when I visited his exhibition “if you could read my mind” last year, at the McIntosh Gallery that is located on campus at Western. Since then, I have been fascinated by the dialogue he creates in his art and the concepts he aims to question. McLean’s work is stylistic in his use of graphic lines and figures used to convey real emotions through the use of humour. I was really impacted by his work in the exhibition last year because of the way it seemed like the viewer truly was taking a peek into his mind. His drawings are like visual mind maps that jump from one space to another. His work ranges from  simplistic doodles to chaotic masterpieces, but they all have a similar effect on the viewer; They give the viewer the ability to see a person’s inner thoughts. He uses colour and shapes to create movement throughout the page and leads the viewer’s eye in many different directions. I love the way he uses text because it emphasizes the randomness of thoughts that go through everyone’s mind. It makes me wonder about the way people present themselves in outer appearance and how much we filter out what we are really thinking. This is one of McLean’s artworks from the exhibition I went to last year:

Jason-McLean-if-you-could-read-my-mind-art

Artwork from “if you could read my mind”

My favourite part of the work is where it says, “This is a stone falling from the sky maybe actually a large rock it will hurt me for a little more but I’ll get better.” The way the text is written as a run-on sentence is an accurate depiction of the way our thoughts are in a constant flow.

This week I will show you how to create this gift card:gift-card-diy-envelope

I was inspired by McLean’s doodles and decided to create my own, which is what I will be using to create the little envelopes – but by all means, you can use your own drawings, patterned paper or even images from the Web to personalize your envelopes.

Here are the materials you will need for this DIY:

gift-card-materials

TIP: I have made a template that you can print out to make your envelopes!envelope-template-cut-out

Step 1: Fold your cardstock in half. This will be your card. step-1

Step 2: Cut out your envelope template and then carefully use the template to trace the same shape onto your other images/paper. Cut out your envelope shapes by following your pencil guideline. step-2

Step 3: Fold each envelope according to the dotted line. step-3

Step 4: Use your gluestick to create your final envelope shape. The best way to do this is in two mini steps. First, fold in sides 2 and 4 of the envelope. Next, only put glue on side 3 and glue this side down onto the other two sides. step-4

Step 5: Glue your envelopes onto the cardstock. At this point, I felt like my card was a bit too long so I cut it down in length. It’s completely up to you if you would like to do this or not. step-5

OPTIONAL: Write a short phrase to describe the intention of your card.

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That’s all there is to it! Hope you had fun doing this DIY. Comment below and show me how yours turned out!

Also, as I was browsing other DIY blogs, I came across this awesome tutorial on how to make snow globe necklaces. Since Christmas is coming up kinda soon, I thought I’d share this with you: http://tatertotsandjello.com/2013/11/diy-snow-globe-necklace.html

Have a great weekend!

Colette Urban: Incognito

Good morning everyone!

This week I had the chance to visit Museum London for my drawing class where I was able to see several different exhibitions, including Colette Urban: Incognito. Before going to the museum, I only knew a few things about her. I knew that she retired from being a professor at Western University in 2007 and that she was diagnosed with cancer in 2012. She passed away June 16, 2013. Her exhibition really stood out to me because of the concepts that she interacted with in her work, but also through knowing that she used to teach in the very building that I go to everyday for art class.

A lot of her work consists of installation pieces and performance art that explores the themes of consumer culture and collecting. She uses a lot of seemingly banal objects and compiles them with a variety of materials to create art that is thought-provoking, yet many times humorous as well. There is an interactive puzzle-making piece breaks boundaries because it encourages viewers to be part of the art by trying to complete the puzzles. I love how the exhibition  displays some of her sketches to show the viewer the process of her project from beginning to end. Through the use of costumes and props, Colette is able to ask the viewer questions about identity and how people interact with the world around them. Here are some examples of work from the exhibition:

The exhibition will be running until January 5th, 2014 if anyone is interested in checking out the gallery themselves!

The series of artworks that truly inspired me is a series of ink and collage drawings. Each sketch is of a single figure created by choppy ink marks that is immersed in a distinct action. The collaged pieces of paper emphasize the movement of the figure.