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Be YourSelf and Grow
6 minutes | Sep 10, 2017
Explain Your Process
Be YourSelf and Grow Podcast episode 11. I’m your host Ken Law. I’m an artist who discovered some truths about myself, my art and the world around me. It’s all about learning how to be yourself and learning to grow. I’m sharing my experiences with you once a week on this podcast; so, please tune in. You never know what you may discover that will bring value to your life.For the next couple of months, YOU are going to interview me. I have collected, over the years, questions asked to other artists and questions asked of me. Now, I will answer a single question each week from that list of questions. Remember, you can still ask a question at anytime by leaving a comment below.So, lets’ get started! (intro …clapping)Can you walk us through your process? Do you begin with a sketch, or do you just jump in? How long do you spend on one work? How do you know when it is finished?I don’t start with a sketch or any idea for that matter. I think it gets in the way of my creativity. So, I start with color. My palette consists of my favorite colors like blues, greens, yellows, reds, oranges, black and white. I seldom use burnt umber or sienna. That might change in the future. I don’t organize my colors either, but I do like to have white in the middle of everything.I don’t complicate my approach to the canvas with though processes like, “what am I going to paint today?”. Instead, I like to keep it simple. When I start, I have only one purpose and that is to put paint on the canvas. It’s a brainless act of covering the canvas with color, and that becomes my underpainting. If I am not stimulated by the underpainting, I continue to add color to it. I paint what I see in the underpainting. Sorta like seeing images in the clouds. I let my mind do the work. There can be several layers of paint built up before I find a direction to go.Sometimes, I will scrape and sand the underpainting to bring colors underneath back to the surface. When I do that, I am trying to get my imagination to kick in, but it doesn’t always work. If nothing happens within an hour or two, I will lay it aside and start a new one.The underpainting is very important. This is where I discover my paintings, or what I’m going to paint next. Because I was a professional portrait photographer, I usually see faces in the color. Sometimes I see fish and birds, too. Both of these symbols come from my childhood of going fishing and remembering bird singing for afternoon naps.Of course, I paint in other symbols like circles, triangles and sometimes numbers. Recently, I’ve been integrating “mark making” into my paintings, too. Mark making has been a secret of mine for awhile. You’ll see that I use it often when I am painting ACEOs. I call it doodling and thought it was amateurish, but when I discovered other artists doing it too, I started doing it on my larger pieces of work.How long does it take me to do a painting? There’s really not a good answer for that question. I’ve had large paintings finished within 6 hours or less, and had miniature paintings take forever. For that reason, I sell my paintings based on style and linear inch.And how do I know when it is finished? I know a piece is finished when I start making minuscule adjustments to a painting. That’s my cue to sign it and start a new one.Next time, I’ll draw another question from the hat about my art.I’m Ken Law Artist and remember, be yourself and grow. Don’t forget to leave your comments and thoughts below. Make it a great day because it is your choice! Adios Amigos!Join my Patreon and recieve lots of cool art! www.patreon.com/beyourselfandgrow
5 minutes | Sep 3, 2017
What draws you to your medium?
Be YourSelf and Grow Podcast episode 10. I’m your host Ken Law. I’m an artist who discovered some truths about myself, my art and the world around me. It’s all about learning how to be yourself, and I’m sharing my experiences with you once a week on this podcast; so, please tune in. You never know what you may discover that will bring value to your life.For the next couple of months, YOU are going to interview me. I have collected, over the years, questions asked to other artists and questions asked of me. Now, I will answer a single question each week from that list of questions. Remember, you can still ask a question at anytime by leaving a comment below.So, lets’ get started! (intro …clapping)How did you first get interested in your medium, and what draws you to it specifically?That story actually has two parts. So, I’ll start with the first part.I started back in high school. I don’t recall why I got into art. It might be that I took an art class, and realized how much I enjoyed it. I am not really sure. I started with a pencil. I began drawing like most people do, I guess. I remember trying out different graphites. I was looking for that shadowy black. I couldn’t achieve it with pencil; so, that led up to charcoal. Eventually I started painting with oils.After high school, I quit art and started working. Actually, I started working when I was 13 or 14 years old throwing newspapers. I grew up in a lower middle class atmosphere, and art wasn’t really considered a career choice. Actually, we didn’t think careers in my family, either. We thought jobs and that mindset followed me most of my life. After graduating high school, I didn’t pick up a brush until my fiftieth birthday. Here’s part two. I moved to Taiwan, after completing 20 years of service with the Army National guard and started teaching English with my wife. It wasn’t your usual 9 to 5 job. I had tons of extra “what do I do” time on my hands. I saw people selling these miniature paintings on eBay. I thought, “I can do that and put some extra cash in my pocket.” Little did I know that, when I picked up a brush for the second time, Jackson Pollock had made his impression on my soul. This time things were different. I didn’t care if it was a job, career or a great way to make money. When I started painting again, it felt so natural. It was like I regained a lost arm or leg. Painting is my way of releasing the problems of the world. It’s my pressure release valve. It comforts me. Painting is where I can really focus and get something done, and feel good about it. When I complete a painting, I feel complete, and that really makes me feel good. I really like the feel good feeling.Next time, I’ll draw another question from the hat about my art.I’m Ken Law Artist and remember, be yourself and grow. Don’t forget to leave your comments and thoughts below. Make it a great day because it is your choice! Adios Amigos
6 minutes | Aug 29, 2017
1st Interview Question: What does making art mean to you?
For the next couple of months, I'll post a single interview question about me and my art. Some of these questions are common questions ask to most artists, and a few are questions asked from my fans. If you would like to hear your question about art, you can message me here or on http://www.patreon.com/beyourselfandgrow Be sure to follow me!!!
7 minutes | Aug 20, 2017
Be YourSelf and Grow Podcast episode 8. I’m your host Ken Law. I’m an artist who discovered some truths about myself, my art and the world around me. So tune in to learn more. By talking about things I have discovery, I hope to create an interest in art, and hopefully put art back into your daily lives. So, Turn off your TVs and Phones and pick up a pencil, marker or a crayon, and start creating because it’s healthy.What are we talking about Today? As I recall, last week we were talking about the noise inside your head. Professionals call it your ego, the East calls it the Monkey, and I call it noise. We also know that this noise is usually negative. It creates a lot of unwanted stress that in turns brings about lots of health problems. We don’t want that, right? Lets take a look at a few ways of turning off the noise inside your head and improving your health.One of the best ways of turning that noise down is by meditating. Meditating is not as difficult as people think. It’s actually quiet simple. Meditation is nothing more than concentrating in the present on one thing, and you don’t really have to get into a special sitting position or repeat single sounds to meditate effectively. You can meditate almost anywhere too. I meditate severals times a week. Although it is simple, some people may find it hard to grasp. If that’s the case, start doing a hobby that you enjoy. When you do something that you enjoy, you begin to concentrate on the act of doing whatever it is. Hobbies like knitting, sewing, woodworking, building models just to name a few are great ways to get started. Athletes call it getting into the zone. When you are in the zone, you concentrate on the action being preformed, and everything else is forgotten. That’s meditation!I like to paint. When I paint, I will fall into a meditated state where the only thing that exists is the canvas in front of me.Painting is so effective that people are trained to be art therapists. Victims of horrible traumas are treated through art. Some war veterans paint to self heal themselves.When I discovered painting the second time, I picked up a brush, started applying paint, and never stopped to think about the rules, regulations and what experts believed art should be. Instead, I started painting for myself. I developed my own rules and procedures. As I painted, I began to relax, focused and became more confident in myself and what I was doing. Painting helped me to focus on painting. That small but important fact turned the noise down to a whimper and eventually off while I was painting. I’m not sure if the voice in your head can be eliminated completely, but it can be controlled.Once I started to take note of the wonderful differences it made in my life, I started meditation again. I don’t recall why I got out of that habit years ago, but I am certain that it had something to do with “do more and be successful” life.Everyone has heard of multi-tasking. I remember in one of my photography classes in college, the professor said that the human eye can only focus on one thing at a time. I think for us to be effective in our daily lives, we too must focus on one thing at a time. Even if multi-tasking is possible, I really don’t think it’s very effective.Our lives are complicated with do more philosophy when we should really slow down and start smelling the roses. We are surrounded by senseless noise and chatter that has nothing to do with who we are and what we want to do.My suggestion is to simplify your life by concentrating on the moment. Live in the moment. What happened in the past, or what will happen is not important right now. Find something that you like to do and loose yourself doing it. Keep practicing it until you become really good at it. You don’t need any talent, just practice. That’s it. It doesn’t have to be painting, although I would love to see you paint. It can be as simple as doodling. Severals times a day practice doodling.I hope this helps.Next time, I’m going work on some questions that I have been asked about from other people. Use the comments below if you have one.Finally, I want to invite you to join my art club where you can get some art prints, art puzzles and even some miniature paintings for your home or office. Go to http://www.patreon.com/beyourselfandgrow I also have some free stuff there too. I’m Ken Law Artist and remember, be yourself and grow. Don’t forget to leave your comments and thoughts below. Make it a great day because it is your choice! Adios Amigos
6 minutes | Aug 13, 2017
The Noise Inside
Be YourSelf and Grow Podcast episode 7. I’m your host Ken Law. I’m an artist who discovered some truths about myself, my art and the world about me. So tune in to learn more. I also hope to create an interest in art, and hopefully put art back into your daily lives. So, Turn off your TVs and Phones and pick up a pencil, marker or a crayon, and start creating because it’s healthy.What are we talking about Today? We are going explore another favorite topic of mine… Noise! Wait a minute! Not that kind of noise, but the Noise that’s inside your head. That sound effect is still not quiet accurate. The noise inside your head is usually a single voice. Everyone has a voice that they listen to everyday. So why do I call it noise. It’s just a single voice, and it’s your voice. Let’s review last week’s definition of noise. The dictionary defines noise as loud, harsh or confusing sound. I describe Noise as sound that makes you feel bad, mad or irritated. Let me throw in a side note before we go any further. The reason for talking about noise from last week and today is simple. They are just a few things that I’ve learned from painting. Painting, when you reflect on what you have created, actually teaches you so many things about yourself that you didn’t know or maybe suppressed. It really is self therapy. Noise is part of our daily lives, and the little voice inside our head is constantly commenting. I recall someone describing that voice as a sports commentator. You hear these play by play comments all day long about what you are doing.The commentator isn’t the only one chattering away. There’s an advisor or fortune teller, and my favorite is the fault finder. That’s just a few.Sigmund Freud, the famous neurologist and the founder of psychoanalysis, called it the alter ego. Some people call it a monkey.I call it noise. Noise makes you feel bad. Everybody owns a noise maker, and it gets you in trouble throughout your day. Examples are when we try to figure out what the other person is thinking or their motives for a given situation. Upon reflection, I hardly ever got close to imagining what the person was thinking or their motivate, but that voice inside my head convinced me overtime that the conclusion that it came up with was absolutely true. As a child, I remember many times at night in bed imaging something that wasn’t true. Thinking I saw something behind the half opened closet door. My mind convinced me to the point that my physical body was reacting in a fight or flight mode. When I decided to fight, I turned on the light and made note that there wasn’t anything there. I would chuckle a little bit, forget about and go back to bed.What’s really scary is the voice had me convinced. How many times do we think or say after thinking that we know someone more than he or she knows their self. That little voice can make anything convincing, and because of that fact, it creates problems that make you feel bad. When you feel bad, you are not at your best. Next time, let’s talk about ways to turn the noise inside your head off and be you more often. Before I go, I want to invite you to join my art club where you can get some art prints, art puzzles and even some miniature paintings for your home or office. Go to www.patreon.com/beyourselfandgrow You’ll find some free stuff there too. I’m Ken Law Artist and remember, be yourself and grow. Please leave your comments and thoughts below. Make it a great day because it is your choice! Adios Amigos
6 minutes | Aug 6, 2017
Turn That Noise Off
Be YourSelf and Grow Episode 6. I’m your host Ken Law Artist, talking about noise and stress. How can we start to feel better?
6 minutes | Aug 1, 2017
Give Me Freedom or Give Me Death
Be YourSelf and Grow Episode 5. I’m your host Ken Law Artist, talking about personal freedom and how I found mine.
7 minutes | Jul 22, 2017
Who Inspires Me? Jackson Pollock
In the beginning, I laughed at Pollock, and in the end, he made me cry.
6 minutes | Jul 17, 2017
Living your dreams
I give you a brief look at how you can discovery your dream job and start living your dream.
5 minutes | Jul 8, 2017
I dip into my past and talk a little about working for money or chasing it.
8 minutes | Jul 3, 2017
My Audio Diary Begins
Episode 001 is where Ken Law begins to tell his story starting in high school and discovering the one word that will haunt him for many years to come.
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