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Archive for the ‘Art appreciation’ Category

This was a beautifully organized party for Alexis’s seventh birthday.  The theme was art, Alexis’s favorite thing. Mom had set up art projects to engage in.  The cake plates were palettes. The goody bag was all about being inspired and inventive. How lovely!

Thank you, Christie!

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ElmhurstLibr1

I did this event at the Elmhurst Library last year and I was honored to be called back.

https://katherinehilden.wordpress.com/2015/08/29/pop-culture-at-the-elmwood-public-library/

ElmhurstLibr2Comic Con is a big event.  Various artists who work in cartooning, comic strips, manga, and caricature are set up at tables where they demonstrate and explain their art. It’s an exciting day for kids. Many come in the costume of their favorite character from movies such as Star Wars.  Capes galore!

Last year I worked in black/white, which the kids and parents enjoyed.  But this year I worked in full color, which was fabulous! Color takes just a bit longer, but for kids this is the way to go.  B/w is elegant, but let’s face it, color pops off the page!

Thank you, Kim!

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Crown5

Crown6The Crown Picnic really is the crown of picnics.

I’ve been doing his picnic for many years and have posted about the most recent years. For the low down on my in-group there at the farm in Wauconda, see

https://katherinehilden.wordpress.com/?s=crown+picnic

I draw new people every year.  But the regulars always want one more drawing for their collection: Peter, Carla, Joan, Fred, Sherrie, Susan, Paul and Bridget plus a half dozen whose names I don’t have at my fingertips just now as I’m typing this.  In the sparkling

Crown8ambiance—both physical setting and conversations—it’s always Crown7interesting to come up with a new way to draw them.  Often they bring new friends. What fun! This is the best.

For Peter, Carla and Fred I had prepared a surprise, but that deserves a separate post.

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EZ1

When the president of a company hires me to spend a whole day to draw everybody who works there, I know I’ll be looking at energetic, imaginative, intelligent, personable, interesting and interested people across my drawing board.  All of those characteristics go with a sense of humor.  And it takes a sense of humor to appreciate caricatures.

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t was an absolute delight to draw smart people who also had a sense of humor. Humor is a cerebral function.  I haven’t done much theorizing in these posts, but it’s time to mention the French philosopher Henri Bergson.  Bergson wrote about laughter and humor around 1900 and in the first two decades of the 20th century.  I highly recommend looking him up.  You can start with https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laughter_(book)

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Humor is related to creativity.  In our own time, there’s much talk about creativity, but humor seems to be off the list of speaker topics.  We get jokes, yes.  But what’s the psychology of humor, not so much.  Touchy subject, you know, given the rules about political correctness.

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I highly recommend this presentation by John Cleese linking humor and creativity:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQ0lck7oo4A

IMG_9524You’ll see that PC is overshadowed by the importance of tickling your brain with a joke, even a not so PC joke.   All in the interest of getting at the “open mode,” in which creative thinking is possible.

IMG_9521he link between humor, intelligence and creativity was confirmed in all those faces I drew this past Tuesday.  No wonder, I was privileged to draw my caricatures at EZlocal, rated among the country’s top one hundred SEO companies.

http://www.marketwired.com/press-release/topseoscom-announces-rankings-of-100-best-local-seo-companies-for-february-2016-2100845.htm

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As the old Monty Python silly walker tells us, you get things done in the “closed mode” but if you don’t know how to get into the “open mode” you won’t come up with anything interesting and worthwhile to do.  The president at EZlocal obviously knows this.  Maybe intuitively, without theoretical terminology, but he knows it. He had the place buzzing. It was a privilege to be there.  Inspiring!

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Thank you, Jim!  And thanks for wanting the work in color!

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ElmurstLibrAA
ElmurstLibrABHow can librarians show kids that their library is totally awesome? At the Elmhust Public Library they start with a fabulous building that looks tempting just from the outside. Inside, the children’s library looks magical. As if that weren’t enough this library brought in a face painter, cartoonists, illustrators and that famous caricaturist, Whatsername. It was a Saturday morning, the light streamed in from the high arched roof and I drew thirty-three people in two hours, mostly grammar school aged kids.
Some kids came in costumes, like Princess Leah and Spiderman, but Elmhust2mostly it was about sports and just I-want-to-see-how-you’re-going-Elmhust1to-draw-me. Or me and my best friend.  It was quite a wonderful morning. Let’s face it, librarians are the best. Ok, let’s look that up. So I googled “are librarians the best?” This is what I got:
http://ebookfriendly.com/best-quotes-about-libraries-librarians/
For those of you who are fascinated by Manga and Japanese and Chinese illustration, here’s the artist who was at the Elmhurst Library event:
Addie Afable, artisticdragon.com, addie@artisticdragon.com. 847-877-8785
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14JourneeBbAt Journee’s birthday party yesterday only seven friends were able to make it:  snow, too much snow, 14JourneeBcand the plows couldn’t keep up.  But I’m glad I found this cozy, neat town house in the winding roads because these  girls were very excited.  The theme of this super well organized party was art. Journee loves art.  The girls, wearing their new party-favor aprons, painted at the kitchen table.  I was set up in the living room, where, as you can see, I drew every one of them as artists.  They loved it.  Happy Birthday, Journee!————————

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13SinglePath4

This young computer company is located in a leafy corporate park in Lombard.  The offices are spacious with good art on the walls. Dress is casual. Hey, everybody knows that we do our best thinking when we’re wearing sandals!  The reception area in the front is comfortably furnished but it needed something distinctive on the walls.  Ta-tah!  The office manager thought of caricatures.  She organized a little Friday lunch on the grounds and invited me to draw all of these thirty clever people, which I did amid much chatting in three hours. I thoroughly enjoyed this crowd.

I haven’t talked about technique in a while.  Here’s a tip when you judge a caricature:  few lines, the fewer 13SinglePath4bthe better.  That’s why I put Marty in the lead position here.  Few lines AND it looks like him.  The likeness, of course, is key.  If it doesn’t look like the person…well, what can you say, it’s embarrassing and a waste of T & M.  To get a likeness in a few minutes, like 3 or 4 (which was the case here), takes a lot of practice and then a lot of concentration. I love this work.

Here’s what the incomplete display looked like that afternoon.  Thank you, Laura!

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13WabashY18b

Early in May the Wabash YMCA at 38th Street held a celebration for Black and Hispanic teens.  The celebration 13WabashY18wasn’t outer-directed, it was about themselves.  Here we are, let’s get together.  There were table games, sports and caricatures by that famous artist, Whatshername.  I was set up next to some plant growing experiments, which I loved.  In two-and-a-half hours I drew twenty-seven kids plus one exercise instructor. Thank you, Ramon!

Here a few drawings from that afternoon and the reactions that went with them.  Fun for everybody, including me. ————

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13EvanstonChamComm8b

This was a “Business After Hours” event, sponsored by the Evanston Chamber of Commerce and the Evanston Community 13EvanstonChamComm8Foundation.  The focus was on the arts in Evanston.  Musicians and actors performed.  As a visual artist, I represented the Evanston Art Center, where I teach painting and drawing.  Appropriately enough, this event highlighting the arts was held at the Evanston Dance Center, where the class rooms are spacious and as mirrored as you are now imagining them to be.

I love this town. This being Evanston, where I’ve lived all my adult life, people were both sophisticated and casual, professional and personable, refined and communicative, serious and witty.

13EvanstonChamComm5 I drew, among others, a writer, a Northwestern football coach, an “officehead,”   and a travel agent.  I drew the owner of the travel agency playing the tablas, which are his passion. He leads this post with his great face and alert eyes.

The “officehead”  was passionate about organizing small business owners’ paperwork, but she was also a passionate biker , holding the world record for speed, which she set a couple of years ago in Utah  on  a vintage something-something BMW.  See?  That’s Evanston.  Everybody you meet has a lot going on.

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Thank you, Mary Beth.  Thank you, Nora.————————

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Not only could everybody be a judge, but everybody could be an artist.

Here’s a brilliant idea for all you Human Resource people.  The employees are encouraged to bring in their own art work.  It will be displayed in, let’s say, a conference/lecture room.  Then one late afternoon you throw a little refreshments-and-nibbles party in that large room and everybody comes in to vote on the art work.  Gets people talking and mingling, and isn’t that part of the HR job description!

And, of course, you bring in that famous caricaturist, whatshername, to draw everybody.  So, that’s what I did in this wonderful art-loving atmosphere. This was an international consulting firm in the Loop just across from the Thompson Center.  Class act, Rohan!  Thank you.

Here are a few of the exhibitors and judges. Sorry about the glare. My drawing paper has a gloss finish (like a magazine cover) and I don’t want to spend time fiddling with the camera angle when I’m taking these photos.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Notice, it was mostly women. If the activity had been centered on sports rather than art, would it have been mostly men?  You think so!?  The next drawing shows a tiny woman with very long hair.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Totally losing it, absolute hilarity.

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