What’s the difference between art and illustration?

What’s the difference between art and illustration?

Good question! Both can tell a story, both can make a point, both can be beautiful or not. The more we depend on pictures and graphics to sell things and motivate us, the line between art and illustration gets blurred.

Vintage illustration- movie posters, magazine ads even pin-up girl art graces the walls of homes, as often as a landscape painting or a still life, another trend these days is decorative signs with positive sayings. Are these art or illustration?

Google says an illustration is a visual aid to make a point, and art is an expression of emotion or beauty. In the examples above, this is not so clear anymore.

As an artist for over 30 years, I am confused! When I look at many of the paintings and drawings I have done over the years, I can now see that they have value as illustrations in various applications. The stippled drawings I am doing these days can be art you hang on your wall or they can be used as illustrations in books and advertising. And with the help of digital media applications like Adobe Illustrator they can be manipulated and painted or colored to create illustrative aids for even more expression. Art is versatile, imagery helps us tell our story. It guides the viewer in a direction we want them to go. Opening their mind to see things in a new way. This is the point of both art and illustration. It all goes back to the story you want to tell.

The image I am sharing today is a gardenia done in pen & ink and then manipulated in Adobe Illustrator to create a rainbow. Its purpose is for Illustration Friday’s weekly challenge. What else could it be used for? I know of several applications, what can you think of? Would love to hear your ideas.

Wiggle Your Toes!

Wiggle Your Toes!

It’s the 2nd week of August already, and the calendar says today is “Wiggle Your Toes Day”.

So I had some time so I decided to do an image to represent this day. It is Summer and most of us are in sandals so it is not a difficult instruction to just thoughtfully or unthoughtfully just wiggle those toes!

My life’s work is about telling stories and I can do that with images and words and often times both. As I say on my website, “Your business is Unique, and You have a story to tell.” and if you take that a little farther, we are all unique and have a story to tell.

Every single one of us. And your story colors your perspective and your behavior in our world.

Have you ever thought about the story you tell? Everything about you is part of that story from the way you comb your hair to the way you drive on the freeway, to the work you do, and the way you play. Every move you make is an expression of your story and how you interact with people you love as well as people you don’t is defined by what has happened in your life in your past. We can choose how much we allow our past to color our future and that is really the good news. The negative experiences from our past are in the past and we can start fresh every day. There is not much I can do to change what’s going on in the world or even just with the people or things in my life. I only have control of me and what I know is that if I send out a positive vibe I feel better and those that choose to receive that vibe also feel better. Joy is a learned response it is something you can change. No it’s not always easy and I don’t always feel it, however, the more I try to cultivate it, the more it grows.

Wiggling your toes feels good, and if you can’t wiggle your toes, wiggle your fingers, or wiggle your arms, legs, or even your nose. It’s a silly little thing, but it made me smile today, maybe it will make you smile too.

Have a happy day!

If you want to know what other silly and interesting holidays happen every month you can subscribe to my newsletter or follow my facebook page. I create a calendar page for your computer or even just to print out and hang on the wall, every month with a beautiful image with a calendar of all the events. Here is a link to the August calendar. It is all free!

Mandalas For Peace

Mandalas For Peace

I am not a Buddhist, a Hindu, a Taoist, a Christian, or any other singular belief system. I am all of them. I believe in a power bigger than anything that has or ever will exist. I don’t believe in a benevolent God or an angry God. I believe in science and I believe there is an incredible amount of stuff we just don’t know.

I’m ok with not knowing everything

But for some reason, I do believe that there is a method to all the madness going on in this world right now. Even though it feels like the planet, nature and all its inhabitants are being ripped apart and all the beliefs and cultural order we hold dear as humans are being summarily destroyed, what it is I don’t know.

I do my best to be open, and honest, and caring, accepting, and understanding. I express gratitude and appreciation. I pray to this power I know, this awareness of what’s beyond. Asking out loud seems to bring serendipitous results, constant answers to my prayers surprise me daily.

These prayers are beneficial to me, however, I am unclear that they have the power to change anything for anyone else. It’s that (I am responsible for my own destiny thing).

Something I am struggling with is how to cope with and even help with the appalling inhumanity that is becoming the norm in this country. I vote I speak out, I participate, I do my best to love those I disagree with but somehow it’s not enough and my heart hurts. So once again I have started drawing.

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The simple act of drawing has been my therapy, my meditation since my early 20’s and now it is manifesting as pointillism or stippling in pen and ink. These tiny minute dots of ink are placed together on the page to create an image. It’s a long process and it requires slow constant repetitive mark-making. It clears my mind and calms my spirit. It occurred to me that this could be used as a prayer, meditative prayer. Just as the Tibetan monks who create the beautiful sand mandalas and chant as they go, I can send out prayers of peace into the universe as I make dots. Whether it manifests anywhere or not is not my concern, it manifests its effects in me which then transmits to those I come in contact with.

As I think about these drawings I have decided that they themselves should be peaceful images and I have chosen flowers as a subject. Each flower image is created from thousands of individual dots, just as the people on this plant are individual dots within the whole. Each one adds something to the mix. We all make a contribution which manifests in the completed fabric of our culture. We choose to be a positive or a negative contribution and the ripple effect is real. Every action causes a reaction.

So I share these drawing in hopes of passing the peace. Nothing more than that.

Thank you for reading. I appreciate your comments, however, this is not a forum for discussion on politics, religion, or hatred and I will delete comments that are not appropriate and peaceful.