Wednesday, September 05, 2012

More on the disconnected workstation

Location, location, location, it makes a difference. We have a spare room in the upper parts of the château. Mostly used for miscellaneous furniture storage  but it does have a ceiling fan and a round table. That's where I set up. The other room has PC parts and art supplies, a cluttered mess. The new room is a long way from the network cable, is quiet and well lit. It is kind of lending to a more open approach to working. Me, I can blog anywhere but to do art requires concentration and being free from distraction and stuff I have to do. Disconnect and shut out the world for a little while.

My am having fun exploring what the tablet feels like and what the different functions of GIMP, Inkscape and MyPaint are. I draw lines and squiggles and shapes. I can think of what kinds of things I might attempt. And I am testing out tutorials. There are some crucial lessons like layers and shaping things by light-n-shadow instead of outlines. Also how to approach the same image as a raster or pixel drawing and a vector drawing. Not that I would become an expert, but find a preference. Vector drawing is like CAD but you can do so much more. Still good old drawing and painting are skills much to be desired.

I heard a video by Scott Ligon of the Cleveland Institute of Art. He said the thing that the PC was best at is bringing different art elements together, synthesis. So I am considering what elements I know, what I want to learn/explore and how to merge them in some projects. I remember at a gallery function a guest ask me what I do. I told him computer art, he said that could be anything. He was right but as an artist I can only use what I know, a subset of all the stuff a computer can do. So I really don't know what the outcomes might be, I am working it out as I learn. I do have to tell people I am a drafter, an instrument drawer, not a freehand drawer. It's not a flaw, it's a feature and I use it well. Some folk clump all artist under the big  "A" title, I'll let you make them straight.

The disconnected workstation is fine. Just installed a virtual machine of XP so that I can run Google Sketchup. It does run in Wine on Linux but is a little unsure about GL graphic libraries. It works then it doesn't work. Found I didn't need Unetbootin, Mint XFCE comes with ImageWriter which does the same thing, format a USB drive and install an ISO image. The cool thing is having a place to go and a setup that is familiar, ready to do stuff you are ready to do.

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