Research?

stlukesguild

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I just stumbled upon Arty's drawing and noticed the term "Research" on the laptop screen. As I was just spending a good deal of time researching images and information related to my current work in progress I found myself wondering about what sort of "research"... if any... others here do in the creation of their art. I supposed that were I to work exclusively from observation, research would not be a big part of my creative process. For better of worse, I don't work in such a manner, and as such research does play a large role in my creative process. Before going in any depth about my use of research in the creation of my art, I'd like to hear some others' experiences of the use of research and how important... or unimportant it is to their work.
 
I normally don’t research anything unless I’m trying to go for a specific look. Especially with colors Cuz I not very good with my color palettes. So there’s researc there.

I know for me, research for drawing, once I understood breaking down everything by there basic shapes, a little bit of perspective and your grayscale has really freed me to draw anything I want. The research I do is for newer things.. techniques.


I’m a nut about this lol …I always said ya gotta learn and understand the rules first before you can break them. 😬
 
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My eyes are always active (and ready to steal), so that is the aesthetic side of my research. The hugely important engineering component of some of my stuff is a different matter, though. I can spend days researching and agonizing over the choice and application of the materials I use in my sculptures.
 
I've studied human and animal anatomy - both medical and artistic [ I draw, paint and sculpt humans and animals]
and I've studied the technical and engineering aspects of materials and methods. I'm always studying something ! :)
Cheers,
Patricia
 
I'm regularly browsing the internet for images, if you want to call that research. I may be able to draw something that resembles a frog from memory and imagination, but I will do a Google search for frog images to feed my head, and then practice a bit. I wanted a certain pose for Eve in my painting "Sundown In The Garden Of Eden". I found a photo of a nude model in a classic studio pose that I liked. I used it for reference and drew her several times before I was satisfied that I knew how to draw what I wanted. Referenced, not copied. Also, if somebody mentions an artist, technique or material that I don't know about, I will look it up through Google or YouTube. You guys have given me quite an education that way. And there are thousands of free tutorials online for subjects like human anatomy, animals, flowers, etc. I will pull up an image that interests me on my desk top monitor and draw it on scrap paper, not with an intention to copy but to use it as a starting point. These usually end up in the trash, but occasionally I do something decent that I save in my picture files.
 
Actual research isn't something I typically engage in. The recent exception was prior to starting my version of The Three Graces. I felt it necessary to study several renditions, to help me narrow down the basic elements involved. Botticelli, Raphael, they were just for starters - I found it fascinating how many artists, over great expanses of time, have their own versions that speak to their styles. It helped me a lot and was fun, too.

But more often I'm going to seek out help as Zen described so well up there - a special pose, angle or technique that suddenly presents itself that seems beyond my skill set or ability to blindly recall. It can help to have a reference as a starting point to pull from.
 
For my wildlife-ish paintings, I have developed a habit of preparing for them by doing lots of sketches from video footage. I cheat by pausing the video, but in the process I develop a sense of my subject's proportions, how they sit in space, how they move etc. When I then use a reference to create a painting, I'm a bit more confident with drawing the subject, or at least, so I hope. It doesn't always work, but I have fun doing the sketches anyway. :)
 
Hi. Again.

Generally, I do a LOT of research, which I enjoy. It usually starts on Pinterest, which has replaced my old-timey (pre-internet) way of collecting images and sticking them into organized file folders. I do this searching in the first place because sometimes, I need a specific type of image to help me clarify the idea I’m trying to “get at.” And at other times, I just have a vague and nagging feeling about something and so I aimlessly meander through images until I find something that helps to crystallize that feeling.

But that’s only researching the imagery.

To go deeper, I might research the thing the imagery is based on, but if it gets too “educational,” then I get grumpy and impatient with my “homework“ so I only go as far as my level of grump allows.

Like right now, I’m doing a series that seems like it could be…fun. Maybe. (These things can often take a swerve into boredom.) I’m doing my usual “figurative” thing but, using ancient artifacts instead of humans. So that’s research right there. Plus, I want to spread them around the world and over periods and times and I need public domain sources (see The Met for example). So that’s more research. In addition to THAT research, the background are textile designs from either that same period (if I can find anything that still exists). If not, then I find something that - at least - comes from the same region/country. So even more research…

I just finished “KING SARGON” of Akkad, who was the founder of the first ancient empire of Mesopotamia, known now as the Akkadian Empire, which existed around 23rd century BC. And now I’m working on “SHAKOKIDOGU,” a googly-eyed fertility figure from the Jomon Period of prehistoric Japan, 14th-3rd century BC.

So do you think I’d know what these words ^^^^ even mean without having done some research?
Uhhhhmmm…no.
 
Previously I did a lot of research--once even to find out the width of the rear end of a horse. All I could find was the width of horse gates in corrals, fields, or stalls. I asked on an artist site, and a horse owner went out and measured his horse's rear, side to side. It was important to me that a rider of a standard size would be okay on the steed that I painted. :) And as I was learning various things, I had to do a lot of research, as we all do. Probably.
Now that I'm a certain age, and have so much wisdom and so many facts/ideas in my head, :rolleyes:they can get confused, and I get to research whatever again. :unsure:
Recently I've looked up birds, pick up trucks, small planes, complementary colors, mixing green, and easy watercolor painting.
That's just some of the art related stuff!
 
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I wanted to (and still do) make anaglyph paintings - that is paintings that will appear in 3d when wearing cyan/magenta glasses. I love the look of anaglyph images with and without the glasses. It turns out making a painting as opposed to a drawing, digital, or photographic image is extremely near impossible. Have done lots of research and experimentation.

to name a few subjects have(are) doing research on:
The history of UFO (myth) sightings and the evolution of aliens and alien spacecraft.

Portraits of early internet "stars" - such as Double Rainbow Man, and Starwars Boy. Also Portraits of the unsung tech heroes of the internet, quantum mechanics and Nobel Prize winners.

Beauty contest winners, celebratory diners and events for stars of the 50,s and sixties.

I love the look of early color printing processes - like the old Sunday newspapers and comics that would have color photos that were slightly out of register so there was color fringing. And the look of early Agfa, Fuji, and Kodak color films.

All these things (and more) in the pursuit of adapting those looks into oil and acrylic paintings
 
Hi. Again.

Generally, I do a LOT of research, which I enjoy. It usually starts on Pinterest, which has replaced my old-timey (pre-internet) way of collecting images and sticking them into organized file folders. I do this searching in the first place because sometimes, I need a specific type of image to help me clarify the idea I’m trying to “get at.” And at other times, I just have a vague and nagging feeling about something and so I aimlessly meander through images until I find something that helps to crystallize that feeling.

But that’s only researching the imagery.

To go deeper, I might research the thing the imagery is based on, but if it gets too “educational,” then I get grumpy and impatient with my “homework“ so I only go as far as my level of grump allows.

Like right now, I’m doing a series that seems like it could be…fun. Maybe. (These things can often take a swerve into boredom.) I’m doing my usual “figurative” thing but, using ancient artifacts instead of humans. So that’s research right there. Plus, I want to spread them around the world and over periods and times and I need public domain sources (see The Met for example). So that’s more research. In addition to THAT research, the background are textile designs from either that same period (if I can find anything that still exists). If not, then I find something that - at least - comes from the same region/country. So even more research…

I just finished “KING SARGON” of Akkad, who was the founder of the first ancient empire of Mesopotamia, known now as the Akkadian Empire, which existed around 23rd century BC. And now I’m working on “SHAKOKIDOGU,” a googly-eyed fertility figure from the Jomon Period of prehistoric Japan, 14th-3rd century BC.

So do you think I’d know what these words ^^^^ even mean without having done some research?
Uhhhhmmm…no.
Hi! Great to see you! :)
 
ZenDruid- I'm regularly browsing the internet for images, if you want to call that research.

"Images also help me find and realize ideas. I look at hundreds of very different, contrasting images and I pinch details from them, rather like people who eat from other people’s plates."
-Francis Bacon


Yes... I do a lot of this as well: endlessly looking at random images on the Internet and elsewhere: paintings, prints, photographs, graphics... and every possible subject you can imagine. The human figure, of course... but also architecture, poster design, furniture, fashion, food, etc... My Pinterest collection includes folders on Batman, Tarot Cards, Flowers, Architecture, Alice in Wonderland, Lingerie, Vampires, Literary Illustrations, Rococo, Film, Spiderman, Art Nouveau, Mermaids, Fashion, Classic Pin-Ups, Edgar Allen Poe, Posters, Classic Hollywood Celebrity Portraits... even colors: Pink, Red, Blue.

I suspect that my reading and the music I listen to contribute to my artistic efforts just as much.

But there are also times in which I make a conscious effort to research specific themes or images. I'll look through hundreds of photographs to find an anatomical reference for a desired position of a hand or foot. The painting I have been recently working on... which I thought was going to be on the theme of Psyche and Amor has suddenly changed to Flora/Poison Ivy. I've been looking at a vast array of paintings of Flora from throughout Art History as well as images of the comic villain/anti-hero, Poison Ivy. I've also been reading up on poisonous/dangerous plants and looking for images of the same. Botticelli's Primavera has long been one of my favorite paintings... perhaps my absolute favorite. I was always impressed by the array of flora/flowers Botticelli put in the painting and I have been looking to do something similar with poisonous plants: Poison Ivy (a well-known plant around here), Poison Oak, Poison Sumac, Deadly Nightshade, Belladonna, Blackthorn, Chinese Lanterns, Death Cap, Destroying Angel, Giant Hogweed, Foxglove, Hemlock, Pokeweed, Stinging Nettle, etc...
 
I'm regularly browsing the internet for images, if you want to call that research. I may be able to draw something that resembles a frog from memory and imagination, but I will do a Google search for frog images to feed my head, and then practice a bit. I wanted a certain pose for Eve in my painting "Sundown In The Garden Of Eden". I found a photo of a nude model in a classic studio pose that I liked. I used it for reference and drew her several times before I was satisfied that I knew how to draw what I wanted. Referenced, not copied. Also, if somebody mentions an artist, technique or material that I don't know about, I will look it up through Google or YouTube. You guys have given me quite an education that way. And there are thousands of free tutorials online for subjects like human anatomy, animals, flowers, etc. I will pull up an image that interests me on my desk top monitor and draw it on scrap paper, not with an intention to copy but to use it as a starting point. These usually end up in the trash, but occasionally I do something decent that I save in my picture files.
Ditto. Any time I am surfing images I start a file on the computer for a subject that might work in a future painting, but these generally end up just cluttering my computer and have to be deleted later. :)
 
This is sure an interesting thread that I've been missing. I've been busy with research! (Ha, just kidding.) No, really, I have a lot going on right now, so I've been missing out on the forums lately, which just sucks. But thanks for using my drawing. :)

I suppose I do a lot of research because I'm not the best at drawing. I usually take my own pictures for reference, but if I can't, I have to look all over the web for angles and poses to get an idea of how to situate certain things if I want to make things just so in certain pieces. It depends. Sometimes I don't want to get it right at all. I want to go straight from my imagination.

But I research in other ways that might have nothing to do with art, although I sometimes spend oodles of time looking for the perfect title that I want to secretly portray. Nothing obvious yet has meaning to me. It still has to be interesting, and it must always be the "perfect" title that fits the piece. I'll do this mostly when I'm a little blank or stuck.

I do have a folder of "inspiration," but it's very small. Some of the images in there are from 10+ years ago, and I don't think I've ever made anything from them sans the landscapes. Those come from real places (most that I've photographed myself), but sometimes those are mixed (frankenstiened) with Google images or others I find on the web, plus a sprinkle of absurdity.

The drawing above is an illustration for a zine/book I'm making that partially tells a story about trying to get my managed state health insurance to pay for a surgery that was out-of-network. I had to research laws about my rights regarding the appeal process and whatnot and fight them without an attorney. Now, that might sound like a boring book, but it's just one page of it. Ha ha ha! The rest of it is a little more interesting than that (sorta). :ROFLMAO:
 
Hi. Again.

Generally, I do a LOT of research, which I enjoy. It usually starts on Pinterest, which has replaced my old-timey (pre-internet) way of collecting images and sticking them into organized file folders. I do this searching in the first place because sometimes, I need a specific type of image to help me clarify the idea I’m trying to “get at.” And at other times, I just have a vague and nagging feeling about something and so I aimlessly meander through images until I find something that helps to crystallize that feeling.

But that’s only researching the imagery.

To go deeper, I might research the thing the imagery is based on, but if it gets too “educational,” then I get grumpy and impatient with my “homework“ so I only go as far as my level of grump allows.

Like right now, I’m doing a series that seems like it could be…fun. Maybe. (These things can often take a swerve into boredom.) I’m doing my usual “figurative” thing but, using ancient artifacts instead of humans. So that’s research right there. Plus, I want to spread them around the world and over periods and times and I need public domain sources (see The Met for example). So that’s more research. In addition to THAT research, the background are textile designs from either that same period (if I can find anything that still exists). If not, then I find something that - at least - comes from the same region/country. So even more research…

I just finished “KING SARGON” of Akkad, who was the founder of the first ancient empire of Mesopotamia, known now as the Akkadian Empire, which existed around 23rd century BC. And now I’m working on “SHAKOKIDOGU,” a googly-eyed fertility figure from the Jomon Period of prehistoric Japan, 14th-3rd century BC.

So do you think I’d know what these words ^^^^ even mean without having done some research?
Uhhhhmmm…no.
It's great to hear from you after all this time Olive. I love hearing about your process. I like to get into the background on what images are about too. Sometimes I'll get caught deep in some rabbit holes. Sometimes it's a good thing, and sometimes, not so good. :ROFLMAO:
 
Ayin and Terri (and all)…just waving hello to youse as I slowly tiptoe back into the ummm…”socializing” thing. I suppose I always find it odd to chat online to invisible people but sometimes, it cannot be helped. One must! Especially if you want to avoid being a curmudgeonly anti-social elder. (Hmmm…and do I really want to avoid that?)

But yeah anyway, rabbit holes can be the MOST fun whenever you’re just mindlessly meandering through them and then end up finding something that you didn’t even know you were looking for. Like, I just went down one last night and ended up spending money at the end…so ugh. But it was for a good cause (the best cause, in fact) so…yay.
 
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