Line, shape, color, value, texture, form, and space are the seven major principles of design and when expertly handled by an artist the result is a strong and balanced composition. A powerful arrangement of these components can draw viewers in to seek a closer look, then carefully move their eye through all the elements of the work, before bringing their eyes back to rest on the focal point. The following works of art, which were selected from this year’s International Portrait Competition winners, were created by five incredible women artists from around the world in Ukraine, the United States, Russia, United Kingdom, and Canada—each of whom has successfully incorporated these principles to captivate viewers and effectively communicate the inspiration behind their award-winning works.
The first artist, Olga Krimon, was born and educated in Russia, graduated with honors, and continued to develop her painting skills in America through self-study, drawing classes, and workshops. When she graduated from art school in the 1990s, she realized that the Soviet Perestroika was not the right time for her to become an artist and survive. Instead, she went on to study languages, which brought her to the United States. After a long corporate career in IT consulting, she did not feel happy or fulfilled—for that, she turned to art. Kimon says, “It became a necessity, a way to survive, a way to express what I felt and how I felt. I needed it daily, I worked nights and weekends to get ahead. And I realized that I couldn’t change who I was, no matter how hard I tried. I led dual corporate and art careers for years until I finally had the courage to become who I dreamt of becoming, who I really was all along. I couldn’t be without it, even though it’s a much more difficult path than a corporate career. It makes me so grateful and so fulfilled to do what I do.” Krimon’s painting Before They Fly was inspired by the model’s pose. The model, Ava, leaned forward slightly and the artist could see a counterbalance of diagonals starting to take shape. She wanted the viewer to look at her face first, then move the gaze down through her hands, and to follow the curve of her dress through the curve of the crane. She made the decision to paint the bird and girl’s dress the same value and color scheme, so they sit so close that the bird becomes an extension of the girl, as if they are one. Kimon explains, “The bird is also a guard. A parent, maybe. While Ava initially held on to the edge of the bench, I changed that to the tree branch, and I added the feathers and other elements that further emphasized the idea of a nest, of a comfortable space where she grows up to then fly away. The white bird was also a symbol of purity and innocence. It all started to tie together. I left the background very simple—with a lot of my initial underpainting wash coming through it. It gives the feeling of warmth and comfort that I wanted to have.”
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
Awe and Wonder
As a child living in central Illinois, Bruce Cascia was given a Brownie camera by his father. The simple cameras were barely more than a box with a lens and a shutter release. They held film—“Two and-quarter by two-and-a-quarter,” Cascia recalls—but there was little room for bells and whistles.
Throughout her three-decade career artist, Carrie Pearce has become recognized for painting odd objects or out-of-the-ordinary scenarios that have a touch of whimsy and sentimentality.
John Tarahteeff’s paintings take you somewhere new, yet familiar. You don’t entirely know where it is, but it feels like you’ve been there before.
The Eagle Valley Land Trust, located in Eagle County, Colorado, is dedicated to preserving 2,000 acres of land every year.
Daniel Bilmes’ first New York solo exhibition opens September 18 at Arcadia Contemporary with new work that shows his growth and development.
Beginning September 10, Erin Currier of Santa Fe, New Mexico, will be showcasing a large collection of new works at Blue Rain Gallery. This includes about 12 collage paintings on panel, as well as over 20 framed, mixed media pen, marker and china marker works on archival paper.
Inside Their Worlds
Lawes was the Grand Prize award winner in International Artist magazine’s Challenge No. 123, Wildlife.
Principle Gallery presents the exhibition Disrupted Realism, curated by John Seed, featuring work by artists who are challenging and changing traditional realism.
Three years ago, Kai Samuels-Davis began preparing for his upcoming solo exhibition at Dolby Chadwick Gallery. It wasn’t until a year ago that the series of paintings began to take shape.
The Edge of a Story
One a master of jubilant color, the other of dramatic lights and darks, the works of artists Colin Page and Kim English build each other up, telling stories through brushstrokes.
Polaroid’s Hi-Print transforms your favorite digital photos into immediate souvenirs
Enhanced protocols for aircraft cleanliness protect the health of customers and crews.
THE BIRTH OF SLICK
The ’61-’66 F-Series
Meet the winners of our first America’s Best Pet Pals contest. Warm fuzzies guaranteed!
An eternal motif for objects around the house.
INTERNET FUNDING RULE COULD FAVOR RURAL AREAS OVER CITIES
Cities and urban counties across the U.S. are raising concerns that a recent rule from President Joe Biden’s administration could preclude them from tapping into $350 billion of coronavirus relief aid to expand high-speed internet connections.
BLOWERS, MOWERS AND MORE: AMERICAN YARDS QUIETLY GO ELECTRIC
For Jared Anderman, of Croton-on-Hudson, New York, switching from gasoline-powered tools to electric ones for lawn care was a no-brainer.
RESPONSIBLE GUN OWNERSHIP IS A LIE
How to convince Americans that firearms won’t make them safer
PLAN Z FOR IMMIGRATION
“A moral failing and a national shame.”
WHEN TO STOP Parenting
DR. ICHAK ADIZES explores some aspects of parenting, in particular when to let go of the role, and how to develop mutual trust and respect between parents and children. He also extrapolates his ideas to succession planning in organizations, so as to enable growth and continuous improvement.