Friday, November 30, 2007

Art or illustration?

The subject of my next figure study is a Corporal from the 44th Regiment of Foot that fought alongside the 48th Regiment of Foot at Braddock's defeat in 1755. The painting will be based on an updated version of a sketch that was first done in 1997. I'm also considering a colored illustration showing what the typical redcoat of the day carried while on campaign. A thought came to me while sorting out what items to include. What would make one painting art and the other illustration? Maybe my work fits more into the area of illustration.

I've recently posted my paintings on a forum for artists in the hopes of getting some feedback that might improve my stuff technically. While there have been some positive responses to the postings I'm wondering if lack of appeal for historical subjects could be the reason behind not many responses.


DeWolfe said...

It looks good. My only criticism is that the hat is a bicorne when it should be a tricorne. What is the url to the discussion group you mentioned?

Jason said...

Wonderful study, pard!

Yeah, I think places like CA are a little "edgy" for historical art. Places like that are great if you like dragons and freaky clowns...Just kiddin', you can observe alot from forums like that.

I guess my definition of illustration is pen and ink/pencil doodles of comic book quality. But if you take paint and really "work it" into something that looks pleasing and convincing to the eye...Yes, ART!

I may be wrong with my description on what is illustration but I'm not as learned in the various definitions in art. "High Brow", "Low Brow" art...What the hell is that?!

Gary Dombrowski said...

Rob, The group is the "Wet Canvas" site. As the the hat it's in profile and the two back corners would not be as angled as the front due to the way it's secured to the crown.I'm going to play with it some more. Artist/illustrator Gerry Embleton is one of the "go to" guys when it comes to redcoats and I seen him depict tricorns a number of ways. As I said the sketch shown is the earlier version. I did rework some of the details to make it more accurate based on Embleton's studies.

Gary Dombrowski said...

Jason, In the end it's really up to the viewer as to what call it. I just find people's reaction, or lack of it in some cases interesting. I thought about doing a small painting of two 1840's type kids whitewashing a fence (shades of Tom Sawyer). I'm sure the reaction to that over my 44th guys would be quite different. This is the definition I found for "lowbrow" art.

"Lowbrow is a widespread populist art movement with origins in the underground comix world, punk music, hot-rod street culture, and other California subcultures. It is also often known by the name pop surrealism".

I guess "highbrow" would be the opposite. Thanks for the responses guys.

DeWolfe said...

I wonder how I missed you on the wet canvas group, I've been going there for a few years myself. I don't post much for the same reasons you mentioned above.