artist

Ryan McGee-Weird Art & Lowbrow Charm

by Monika Blichar

I have long admired artists who push boundaries and when selecting artists to participate in our events, I always strive to reach artists who are different, fresh and new in their work. When I came across Ryan McGee’s work, I noticed something ‘je ne sais’ quoi about it. It’s dark but delightful. It’s strange and sublime. He examines life through a distorted lens. I loved it the moment I saw it and knew that we had to feature him in our Toronto event on November 17. I caught up with Ryan to ask him about his art. Enjoy!

 

1-When did you start making art?

I can’t pin point exactly when I started making art, for me it was something that just had to happen, I always had a need to express myself visually. When I was younger this took the form of drawing on walls and filling up sketchbooks with crude doodles. It wasn’t until my time in College that I started to really to think critically about what my art was, and what I wanted to put out into the world.

2-What inspires you to create?

I have always had a very strong interest in the weird, and this fuels me in everything I create. I pull from everything that strikes a cord with me on a personal level, and things that capture the underground culture I love. I often find myself collecting outdated horror and sci-fi comics, saving images of early surfer, and hot rod culture, and tuning in to a new band that connect with me. All of these elements get archived in somewhat of a nexus of inspiration for me to draw from.


3-How do you think art can change society?

I believe that art is extensive, and reaches just about everyone through various outlets. In my case I always wanted to create art but I never truly felt comfortable in the fine art culture, so I sought out sub art groups to get into. I think that’s the truly amazing thing about art is that there really is something out there for everyone to connect with. There will always be a steady flow of talented people who want to create, and express themselves. As long as art continues to have various outlets for these people to grow creatively then there will always be potential to change society by pushing new ideas, and concepts through their works.

4-Do you try to convey messages through your illustrations?

There is a certain charm I believe in lowbrow art, and this is something a try and capture in my pieces. I like to play with the imagination of the viewer through my strange, and sometimes-goofy pieces, I think this connects with the onlooker reminding them that art can fun. If my work has any type of message I would say it’s for people to take a step back, and not take themselves so seriously.


5-Where do you see yourself in your art business in the next five years?

I would love to have really established myself at least within the Toronto art community in the coming years. My dream would be to sustain myself entirely on my art, and that is something that I am really working on accomplishing. I think it is important especially for artists to set goals set for themselves and their art, and to always be striving to grow creatively, and professionally.

6-What kinds of works will you have for sale at Art World Toronto? Will you be offering attendees any show specials?

I will have a variety of pieces available for sale at Art World Toronto from patches to stickers to prints. In terms of special offers I really value meeting, and networking with new people at these events. Chances are if you come and say hi you’ll end up with a discount on some pieces, or maybe some stickers for free.

To order tickets to the Toronto Art World Expo, please visit This Link

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Surf Art? Yes Please! 

By Monika Blichar 

I always love meeting new artists and sharing them in our network. This time, I catch up with Lindsay who has a daring sense of adventure in her art and life! 


Lindsay graduated from San Diego State University with a degree in Television Film and New Media then proceeded to get her MAED at University of Phoenix. Lindsay is from the Hollywood area where she worked at DreamWorks as well as other film companies and eventually took on her own clients. Some clients include Marriott, US Hanger Company, Hilton, San Diego Rescue Mission, Pussers and many more!

“My work is shows the compliments of coastal living and the carefree lifestyle of surfing. I like to do work with passion that shows the beauty of the sport of surfing becoming one with nature. I like to show how creative nature’s beauty can be. I live outside of the DC area and was born and raised in southern California which I am constantly coming back to. I create ocean art, accessories and jewelry. www.BlueFusionSurfArt.com Paradise Found is a favorite spot in Kauai.” 

Outdoor Canvas Art

Outdoor Canvas Art is an easy way to add colour! 
For a quick and easy way to spruce up your yard or garden, consider adding canvas art to your outdoor space. The opportunities are nearly limitless, and you’ll be able to take advantage of a huge wealth of designs available. And, with printed artwork, you’ll find you can add a personal touch. Give visitors an impression of your own style, and compliment the design and aesthetic of your home with a tasteful assortment of hung and mounted pictures.

Learn more HERE

Interview with Annsabelle Recitas Ramas

by Monika Blichar
This week, I catch up with Annsabelle Recitas Ramas. I always love to meet new artists and Annsabelle intrigues me not only because she is an interesting painter, but also because she brings to her work a passion and cultural background in which you can get lost. Her work is a sort of hidden gem in a vast sea and when you take time to look and appreciate it, the sea; with all its waves and motion, becomes still.
1-What inspires you in your art?

I call my collection of work inspiration for all.
Creativity comes from deep in our soul.
We all want to find purpose in life. Sometimes heavy thoughts are colours in my dreams. My greatest art is inspired at the latest hours of the day when my mind’s eye turns my hand into strokes of chaos. Yesterday’s paint strokes are sometimes dark, but I see bright colors through the shadows of my pain.

2-How did you start making art?
I began painting at a young age, but I stopped. I have always loved art. Art is my life. Recently, during a difficult period of my life, I started painting again. I used painting as an outlet for my emotions. I come alive through the spirits in my paintings. I’m loving painting and feeling alive again.

3-What have been some of your favourite pieces so far?
My favourite pieces are The Hidden Pain, The Waterfalls, Calgary Life, Storm in the Afternoon, Chaos 1, and Out of my Mind

4-You make a lot of abstract work. What do you feel makes a good abstract painting?

I create art with my heart and soul. I feel that, to make a good abstract paintings, people should be able to relate and react to it. The piece should speak to people and move them, emotionally. It should give them strength, allow them to explore their imagination, and create harmony and rhythm in their homes. I strive to create modern and exciting abstract art that inspires people.

5-Where do you want to see your business in five years?
I will be promoting my art and expanding in the Vancouver area. I dream of doing some international shows in New York City, Los Angeles, Arizona, Dubai, and my native Philippines.

6-Will you have any special offers for AWE 2017 guests?

Yes, we will have limited edition paintings, posters, and postcards on special prices for guests. We will also have a raffle prize draw for one of my limited edition prints, and one of my favourite paintings, “The Hidden Pain,” (pictured in this article) will be available in the AWE 2017 Silent Auction. Visit and chat with me at my display area!

Biography – Annsabelle

Annsabelle “Ann-ann” Ramas (b. Annsabelle Recitas Ramas on March 7, 1980) Is a Filipino-Canadian Abstract Artist. Her provocative, imaginative works recently landed her a feature in the prestigious lifestyle magazine, Jet Set.

Annsabelle’s art is rooted in her love of the splendours and senses of her land, the Philippines, and her struggles with – and courage to forge ahead from – personal experiences of heartache and pain. Her free strokes feature rich, colourful depth and unmistakable gravitas. Annsabelle is most in her element – brush in hand – painting her intricate feelings on a blank canvas.

Her collection of work is called Inspiration For All.  Believing that creativity comes from places deep in our soul, she hopes her art will help others find purpose and meaning in their life.

If the mundane doesn’t make sense to you, perhaps Annsabelle’s divine strokes of thoughts and dreams may speak to your soul.

Annsabelle’s greatest art is inspired at the latest hours of the day when her mind’s eye turns her hand into strokes of chaos. Yesterday’s paint strokes of dark days past are making way for bright future horizons.

To see more from Annsabelle, please visit her website http://annsabelle.com/ 

Interview with Body Painter Devon Burbank

by Monika Blichar

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1-When did you know you wanted to be a make up artist?

I think I realized that I wanted to be a makeup artist when I recognized that there are more options than painting on a flat canvas. I really enjoy the 3D aspect of the art form and also that it’s more socially acceptable to talk to living models rather than an intimate object.

2-Why do you love working with make up?

I like having the freedom of being creative while also simultaneously following the natural bone structure for each person’s unique characteristics. It’s much more challenging being able to walk in to something with so much artistic inventiveness, but also having to follow the rules of realism at the same time. It’s a perfect mixture of art and balance!

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3-You won at the IMATS in 2016. What was your inspiration for your character submission at that competition?

I’ve always been inspired by the Star Wars franchise and the creatures that lived in it, and though it was such a crazy random happenstance that it was chosen as the theme for that years IMATS competition, Star Wars was, ironically enough, my inspiration. That being said, when we were told to create a unique character complete with costume and a story, I immediately started to plan one around the desert planet of Jakku. I was inspired by the story line of Ray and her struggle of living alone on such a deserted bleak desert planet and wanted the thriftiness and cunning of her character to come across through my own.

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4-You do make up and prosthetics. What has been your favorite character design so far?

It’s incredibly difficult choosing my favorite design, I put hours of planning and preparation in to each creature and they all hold a special place in my heart. Though I think it’s safe to say that the most entertaining character designs so far were when I turned my two best friends in to Mike and Sully from my favorite childhood film, Monsters Inc. It was a strangely satisfying feeling getting to see the animated characters that I held so close to my heart for all those years be given life and personality from the two people that now share that same spot.


5-Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Do you have any goals for your business?

In 5 years I’d like to be able to look back on all that I’ve done and be proud of what I’ve accomplished in that short amount of time. I would love to be able to work as a full time freelance makeup artist that specifies in creature design and prosthetics, but at the same time I don’t think that I could ever limit myself to just one form of makeup artistry since it’s such an amazing art form. So I guess the goal for my freelance makeup artistry business is to have as many opportunities as possible so I can enjoy the unexpected journey of where it takes me.

6-What are you looking forward to the most about competing in Art World Expo this year?

I’m looking forward the 6 hour time-span that we have for painting, usually I’m used to working with smaller durations of 1-3 hours so having that extra time will be wonderful for detail work. I’m also looking forward to seeing what the other artists bring to the table for the ‘7 Wonders of the World’ theme, each person has such a unique art style which will cause some truly incredible ideas and designs.

To learn more about Devon Burbank, have a look at her FACEBOOK PAGE or WEBSITE 

 

Vendor Tips: Sell Your Art

by Monika Blichar, Art World Expo Owner and Producer

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Selling art can be tricky. I mean, lets be honest about buying art. It isn’t a necessity like food or shelter nor can it improve your employment skills via education or training. Investing in art doesn’t bring you a fancy certificate for a future job position, nor does it help you do your job better because its settings has better apps than your last device. It can’t help you put gas in your car or buy new running shoes for your kids, nor can it help you get dog food for your puppy. So, what is the motivation for people to buy art and how can you sell your art regularly despite these drawbacks?

Have a look at these vendor tips; be sure to send me your ideas and I might just post them in my next blog with credits to you-website and photos included of your art too!

1-Market to a Specific Audience

Whether you make wood sculptures or plaster casts is irrelevant. Who you are marketing to is what is important. Afterall, if you are targeting college or university students just because you’re currently in college or university, it may work for bumper sticker art, cards or prints, but once you decide you don’t want to sell 500 items at $5, your chances of selling a piece at even $100 to a student is slim. Before you continue your marketing today, think about who your audience is and then find ways to reach that audience.

2-Social Media

I harp on artists all the time about using social media to promote their art. What other free tools are there? Social media is definitely the number one tool to reach the maximum number of people for no monetary investment. Artists in our events will promote their work and use our #artworldexpo hashtag; you’re more than welcome to use it too and we’ll share and retweet your art. That’s the beauty of it really-you can reach so many people and if you use good hashtags, others will share your work too. Be sure to comment, like, and share other people’s posts, images and content in order to spread the love! In terms of social media, whatever you put in, you’ll get back.

3-Follow Up

Many artists sign up for markets, events, and trade shows; preparing everything correctly including draw boxes for contests, email marketing newsletter campaigns, and then; fail to follow up for numerous reasons. Whether you didn’t do as well as you thought at your event sales wise or you just didn’t get the number of people through your booth as you though, the biggest waste of time after an event is that you didn’t follow up with people you met or who entered your draw box. That is where the REAL fortune is. Adding people to your mailing list, inviting them to your Facebook Page, or keeping them in the loop for your next event is the KEY to creating relationships that will help you grow your business and sell more art.

I always love to try new things when selling art. I diversify my work and my workload; making adjustments all the time. What worked two months or two years ago, might not work today. The important thing is that you always experiment with your sales strategies and sales goals with the knowledge that there is something for everyone and someone out there is looking for exactly what you have.

If you liked these tips, be sure to SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTER to get more tips like these plus special offers, industry news and notifications about our latest events and projects on a regular basis. Be sure to share these tips and send us your ideas for your chance to be featured in our next post! Email us at artists@theartworldexpo.com

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Monika Blichar is an Entrepreneur and Artist. She is owner of MAB Art Studio & Boutique Gallery in North Vancouver and producer of Art World Expo and Painting Dreams International Art Tours. She is always pushing boundaries as an artist and creative entrepreneur. Her love of the arts has been a part of her life since childhood.

 

Painting Dreams Art Tour-Wroclaw, Poland

by Monika Blichar

Wroclaw is known as “the meeting place”. With its picturesque architecture, many coffee shops and restaurants as well as attractions to visit, any artist will find an array of inspiration. The city is full of people, art, history and culture!

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Photos: City Square called the Rynek, Botanical Gardens, and a painting from 1864. 

Our trip here this year is part of Painting Dreams International Art Tours. Each year, a group of artists joins us for a two week tour of a selected area overseas. This year, we chose to take the tour to Wroclaw as it is the European Culture Capital for 2016 with stop overs in Amsterdam and Warsaw. We arrived late on Saturday night and since arrival, have enjoyed visiting attractions such as the Rynek, museums, and art galleries. The city is quite busy this year and we are finding that many people speak English well. Our travellers are able to get around easily on the trolley system and our apartment is located minutes from the downtown core. So far, some of our highlights have been visiting the National Museum, the Botanical Gardens, and the Panorama.

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Though our group is small this year, we have made time to create works and are anticipating cooler weather in order to be able to paint plein air! The weather has been unusually hot for the area this year, but we have been able to create a few pieces over the last few days! Sketching has been ideal to get some ideas down on paper and our canvas pads and travel kits have been a great way to create pieces that are easily transportable and that can be made anywhere.

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Sketch by Monika “Polish Princess” as well as two acrylic paintings. Inspirations for these pieces have been the city’s 300 some odd gnomes and Polish scenes, insects and architecture. Works in progress. 

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Kathryn has been working steadily on her bird piece. Colours are coming along and she has been working from the workbook provided to tour members. “You’re Going to Make It-A Creativity Workbook to Help You Make Your Best Art” by tour operator and art instructor Monika Blichar. You can order your own copy of the workbook EBOOK HERE

If you are interested in travelling with Painting Dreams International Art Tours, please register for our next information session on August 28 held at our studio and gallery in North Vancouver, BC. If you are out of the area, we will be streaming the meeting so you will be able to be present virtually. Please register PAINTING DREAMS IN SPAIN 2017

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Ofer Samra-Actor Turned Painter

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I believe Art is about being open and allowing life ideas, color, nature, people etc. to go in. Together, with the Artist’s passion, interests, feelings and point of view, a unique personal art is created.


about

“Since early age I was watching people, animals, nature. I was very curious and interested. Always asked about the nature of behavior.


Born in Israel, moved to the states in mid-eighties, Ofer pursued acting ( Role of “Yusef” in “True Lies”). ”It was there in acting classes where we talked about painters”. That’s when the “Art” seed was planted.

“With painting, I’ve learned to express body, mind and spirit. After studying work by Caravaggio, Egon Schiele, Magritte and Picasso I found figurative work as the main tunnel to express life, passion, emotion, strength and character”.

Ofer’s most recent Art Exhibit was on May 14, 2015, at QART.COM Gallery in Marina Del Rey, California. The Exhibit included a large variety of Ofer’s latest work.

Art World Miami: French Sculptor Capucine

 www.capucinesafir.com

About

Can Art alleviate souls?  This is my project.
My work is about reshaping reality by giving smoothness and sensuality to my sculptures. In return, people feel lighthearted and at peace. This is my reward.
I keep caressing my sculptures. My hands are my eyes. I carve in limestone and plaster, with hand tools only and also work with mixed media, always inspired by nature. This is my process.
Since 2013, I’ve been living and working in Miami. I want to reach out to the world. This is me..”


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Biography : 
Capucine Safir is a self-taught, Miami-based French sculptor.

After many years working in the movie industry, she graduated in interior design in Sydney, Australia where she lived for a few years.

In 2009, Capucine’s life took a new turn when her second son was born disabled; after caring for her children full time for four years, as she moved to Miami, she decided to pursue her love of art and started working full time as a sculptor.

She enjoys every aspect of this art from the physical implication to, the sound of the tools to, the dust. But, most of all, it is the appearance of the form emerging from the block that makes direct carving so special. She soon found her own style through soft rounded shapes. Streamlined, pure, atypical are some of the adjectives which best define her sculptures.

Her work is very instinctive whether she creates animals or abstract sculptures. The worlds of sculpture, design, as well as painting or nature itself also make up her varied artistic influences.

She carves in stone and plaster with hand tools only and also works with mixed media.

The Illusionist: An Interview with Carolina de la Cajiga

by Alyssa Laube

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“Annitya” will be up for auction at the Art World Expo. Proceeds support Make and Break Arts Foundation.

Carolina de la Cajiga doesn’t call herself an artist but an “illusionist and interpreter”. To describe what she does in photography, sculpture, and painting, she explains “I create illusions by transforming my ideas into something tangible”.

Her vision is different than reality, she “adds or removes from what is there” in order to feel satisfied with the finished product. In her Portraits of Canada and Canadian Divas series, she replaced hair with flowers. In Post-Modern Glyphs, she removed the backgrounds surrounding her subject: cable knots. What used to be behind – buildings, clouds, trees – was digitally cleared away in order to obtain a clean image with only the knots visible. “My goal is simple: to represent what I see in my mind. “It’s all aesthetics, beauty,” said de la Cajiga.

Over the past few years, her work has been focused mostly on photography but, as anything she does, it is her own kind of photography. Her most recent series is “shooting dynamic light that lasts atto seconds (the smallest unit to measure the speed of light).” De la Cajiga takes hundreds of shots and carefully picks the ones she believes have the most potential. What follows is a multi hour-long process that turns those photos into de la Cajiga’s vision for the piece through the use of various methods and computer programs. “The result is a photograph that asks the audience to question whether [parts of] it ever existed -what you see is not what is, but what your mind sees… “The more of these shots I process, the more complex and intricate the images are turning out to be.” Not finding a term to describe her technique, she coined the word “Katharosgraphy” from the Greek Katharos = to scratch, to clean, to purify, and Graphy = process. Coincidentally, Katharos also means oak tree which is what Cajiga, her last name, means.  At the Art World Expo, she will be exhibiting this series of work.

Many of her other works also play with altering reality. The series, City In Flux, is based on illusion and “bend[ing] architectural protocols”. Here, she twists and morphs Vancouver buildings. In What If ? she places Las Soldaderas (“civilian women who made significant contributions to both the federal and rebel armies during the Mexican Revolution of 1910”) into other important events throughout history. Even in her photography of everyday life, such as Construction – Workers, Lifting of Backhoe, Invisible in Neon, and Rain City, she added or deleted components that are unidentifiable to the public eye. Only de la Cajiga knows what did and did not exist in the moment when the photo was captured. The audience is left to wonder.

Carolina will be part of the “Love in Any Language” exhibition at the Ferry Building Gallery in West Vancouver, 1414 Argyle Avenue, West Vancouver, February 2 – 21, 2016. The opening reception will be February 2, 6 – 8 pm, and Meet the Artists is on February 6, 2 -3 pm.

You will also be able to see her work and catch up with De la Cajiga at her new studio at the 195 Pemberton Studios bustling artist community in North Vancouver.

Take a look at Carolina de la Cajiga’s collections yourself on her website. Better still, see them in person at this year’s Vancouver Art World Expo. She is in the process of finalizing a new website, http://www.delacajigafineart.com, to display the Katharosgraphy artwork. Stay tuned!