Wrapping up 2023
Denise J. Howard's Art Blog
by denisejhoward
3M ago
Wow that was a fast year! The first post-pandemic year that felt completely normal again. My first full year of “retirement” was supposed to be my first full year as a full-time artist, but the universe conspired to keep my art part-time after all. It was jam-packed with art activity just the same: Exhibited work in 14 exhibitions, from local to international, including the prestigious de Young Open in San Francisco Finished 7 new artworks Won 8 awards (two 2nd Place, one 3rd Place, Award of Merit, Award of Excellence, three Honorable Mention) Taught 2 virtual workshops Taught 3 local in-pers ..read more
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A solo show for…my mother
Denise J. Howard's Art Blog
by denisejhoward
5M ago
This post isn’t really about me, it’s about my mother, Wynona Howard, who died at age 84 in 2012. She left behind a legacy of almost 30 quilts she’d made, in various states of completion. This is about Mom’s art, but you’ll see the connection to my art as you read on. Mom learned to sew from her mother and the Price Sewing Club of rural Gorin, MO in the 1930s and 1940s. But once she married, she was far too busy raising two kids, driving tractors in the field, helping with livestock, raising and tending a thousand laying hens, prepping and selling their eggs, raising a huge vegetable garden ..read more
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The de Young Open experience
Denise J. Howard's Art Blog
by denisejhoward
6M ago
In case you’ve never heard of the de Young Museum of Art, it’s a world-class art museum in San Francisco, in the heart of Golden Gate Park and across a plaza from the California Academy of Sciences. It’s affiliated with the Legion of Honor, which is also a world-class art museum. The de Young’s focuses are on American art from the 17th century to the present, textile arts, African art, Oceanic art, art of the Americas, and international contemporary art. Once every three years, the museum hosts the de Young Open, which is open to artists in all media in the nine counties comprising the San Fra ..read more
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My encounters with generative AI
Denise J. Howard's Art Blog
by denisejhoward
8M ago
I’ve been following with great interest—and some worry—all the latest developments around artificial intelligence (AI) applications. After all, I took an elective class on AI in grad school decades ago. ChatGPT and Bing are being used to write news articles, college essays, resumes, and speeches. Midjourney and DALL-E are being used to generate imagery. These are only the best-known; they have many competitors, all racing to achieve the holy grail of producing results that are indistinguishable from the best human efforts. Such disruptive high-tech innovation seems so distant from us artists w ..read more
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The benefit of a blog
Denise J. Howard's Art Blog
by denisejhoward
11M ago
Remember blogs? They used to be a thing. Anyone could start a blog and write about anything. Some were educational, some were humorous, some were blather. They might collect followers, or not. Blogs lost some of their popularity when smart phones gained the ability to make video clips and people started vlogs instead, then YouTube channels with episodes, complete with subscriptions and commercials. Attention spans got shorter, so TikTok replaced a lot of vlogs, and emojis replaced a lot of text. I started this blog several years ago as a place to share with the world my experiences restarting ..read more
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A game-changing tool
Denise J. Howard's Art Blog
by denisejhoward
1y ago
Any artist who has ever worked with charcoal, graphite, or certain kinds of colored pencils on paper has experienced the heartbreak of smudges. Either the pigment gets on the heel of your hand while you’re working in one area and you don’t notice until there it is in a bad area, or a tiny amount of something else on your skin–dirt, oils, crumbs–directly affects the paper. You may or may not be able to fix it! Normally this can be prevented by keeping a sheet of paper like glassine under your drawing hand at all times. A couple of months ago I was working on a drawing using Faber-Castell Polych ..read more
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Software engineering vs. art making
Denise J. Howard's Art Blog
by denisejhoward
1y ago
In my very first programming class (FORTRAN) as a freshman in college, the instructor, Mr. Norman, had each of the 25+ students quickly state their name and their major, because he knew that some students were taking it as an elective or out of curiosity and he wanted to gauge his audience for the semester. When my turn came, I said “Art and computer science”. The next student was halfway through his when Mr. Norman interrupted “Whoa, wait a minute! Back up! Art…and…computer science?” There was laughter. An acquaintance who had already read the preface of the textbook piped up “Sure, it says i ..read more
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Someday, I’ll probably offend you
Denise J. Howard's Art Blog
by denisejhoward
1y ago
Occasionally, I see a new artwork posted by an artist on social media which has a social commentary or political aspect to it. It’s not violent, obscene, or profane; the reference may be as obvious as a political cartoon, or so subtle that you have to think about it to get the message. The artwork may be a departure from the artist’s usual subjects or style. Regardless, viewers are quick to comment. Some compliment the artist on the work and the message. Others are offended and go on the attack; they may go so far as to swear they’ll never speak well of the artist again. This is not unexpected ..read more
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Wrapping up 2022
Denise J. Howard's Art Blog
by denisejhoward
1y ago
Now that it’s the very last day of the year, I think it’s safe to say that 2022 was a much better year than 2021 or 2020 for most folks! (Unless you’re heavily-invested in the stock market, or you were a victim of all the layoffs in the tech sector in the second six months.) It was a busy and productive art year for me: Exhibited work in 13 juried exhibitions, from local to international Finished 7 new artworks Sold 6 originals Won 4 awards (two 2nd Place, two Honorable Mention) Taught 3 virtual workshops Taught 2 local in-person workshops Taught 2 workshops at the Colored Pencil Society of A ..read more
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Wrapping up 2022
Denise J. Howard's Art Blog
by denisejhoward
1y ago
Now that it’s the very last day of the year, I think it’s safe to say that 2022 was a much better year than 2021 or 2020 for most folks! (Unless you’re heavily-invested in the stock market, or you were a victim of all the layoffs in the tech sector in the second six months.) It was a busy and productive art year for me: Exhibited work in 13 juried exhibitions, from local to international Finished 7 new artworks Sold 6 originals Won 4 awards (two 2nd Place, two Honorable Mention) Taught 3 virtual workshops Taught 2 local in-person workshops Taught 2 workshops at the Colored Pencil Society of A ..read more
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