Volume 2, Number 4
Recent SegPlay™ Patterns
We recently added some wonderful abstract designs from artist Jordanka Yaretz.
Jordanka is an award wining international artist who excels in a variety of styles, but is known for her naive , whimsical paintings. Since she started painting in 1970, Jordanka's art has been featured in many solo and group exhibitions and won numerous awards.
Seven of her paintings have been reproduced into Christmas Cards for UNICEF and the Leukemia Research Fund of British Columbia. One of her paintings appeared in ' CHATELAINE MAGAZINE'. Jordanka was featured in 4 British Columbia TV shows.
New SegPlayPC™ Patterns
There are two more SegPlayPC™ pattern collection this month as we now have passed the 1000 available patterns milestone. These new sets include "Alfred Sisley - English Impressionist".
and "Tree Scapes", a very popular set of tree-centric landscape illustrations.
The latest addition to our website has been a few Art Mosaics that we've designed using the images from our SegPlayPC™ collection.
What makes these Art Mosaics so special is that they're optimally designed for viewing on our website. The resolution is small enough that you don't have to view them at poster size to get the full visual effect, and large enough so that you can easily recognize the individual tiles.
Also the square tiles in these Art Mosaics are hyper-linked to SegPlayPC™ pattern set pages, so as you explore the mosaics, you can simply select any tile with your mouse, and be taken to the appropriate pattern set page. This linking also makes for a fun art educational exercise in seeing how many masterpieces (and their artists) you can recognize and name. Let us know what you think of them..
There's a recent update to popular SegPlayPC™ software, which is made free to all current users. Version 1.6 can be downloaded here.
You can download and install this version without uninstalling your current version. Also, you won't have to re-authorize your software.
You find a number of bug fixes and new features. There's a super new pattern selection dialog which makes it a snap to find and load all of your downloaded patterns. Also for those users with mouses with wheels on them, you find the new zooming capability a much better way to quickly zoom in and out while you are painting your patterns.
Our previous newsletters are always available to read. You can find them here on our web site.
We're starting to add some informative artist descriptions to our pattern set pages (e.g. Renoir pattern set contents). If you have interest art-related articles, papers, or rantings and ravings, let us know what they are, and we'll consider publishing them on our site.
Also be sure to stop and check out our Segmation Video Gallery where we've compiled a bunch of nicely done YouTube movies relating to painting and fine art. There are a few new categories including Camille Pissarro , Alfred Sisley, John Constable and James McNeill Whistler. You'll definitely get inspired when you watch the "Painting with Food" videos!!
As always if you have suggestions for new features, want to report bugs, or tell us how you are using our paint by number patterns (work, school or at home), drop us an email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We're always looking for more appealing art pieces for our SegPlay™ online paint by number collection. If you are an aspiring artist and am interested in setting up a free personal category on SegPlay to showcase some of your work in our fun paint by number world, drop us an email email@example.com
We hope you enjoyed reading this newsletter. Please feel free to pass it on to a friend or colleague. If you have any comments or suggestions about this newsletter, please drop us an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
-Mark & Beth
Artist Of The Month: Alfred Sisley
Alfred Sisley - English Impressionist
Alfred Sisley (October 30, 1839 – January 29, 1899) was a landscape painter and one of the founders of the French Impressionist School. He lived most of his adult life in poverty, appreciation of his art coming only in his final years.
Although Sisley was born in Paris, his parents were wealthy English expatriates who lived in France -- his father was a merchant who traded with the United States. Hoping that his son would follow in his footsteps, Sisley’s father sent the young Alfred to London to train for a career in business. But Sisley’s heart lay elsewhere and in 1862 he dropped his studies and returned to Paris to study art. His parents supported their son’s ambition and sent him to the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, the Paris art academy, where he studied under Charles Gleyre who encouraged the young Sisley to be original. It was Gleyre who suggested Sisley paint out of doors.
At Gleyre’s studio, Sisley met other young painters who would later form the Impressionist movement, among them Renoir and Monet, with whom he formed close friendships. The three young students would take outdoor painting trips together, creating works intended to capture the transient effects of sunlight. In 1863 Sisley and Monet left the city and went to live in a quiet, rural suburb of Paris. During this period, Sisley was deeply influenced by the works of Corot, as evidenced by early works first exhibited at the Salon of 1867.
Sisley also began frequenting the Café Guerbois, a favorite meeting place for intellectuals and artists of the day. He became involved in the heated discussions and was deeply moved by the ideas at the heart of Impressionism. He began painting in short, rapid brushstrokes and concentrated on capturing fleeting impressions of shimmering water, the texture of clouds and the movement of foliage in a soft, pastel color scheme of greens, yellows and clear blues.
The Franco-Prussian war, which broke out in 1870, intervened. It was a time of great hardship in Paris. Sisley spent some of the period in London but his father’s business was ruined. Sisley had been receiving an allowance from his father and now the artist suddenly found himself poverty-stricken, a state in which he would remain for the rest of his life. Sisley had married Eugénie Lesouezec in 1866 and the couple had two children so he was now faced with having to support his family without the means to do so.
Sisley and his family moved to Moret-sur-Loing, a lovely village in a rural setting. He was painting full time now and was a pivotal member of the Impressionists, with whom he exhibited regularly. He had broken free from his early influences and in the 1870s he painted an important series of landscapes, one of which, The Bridge at Argenteuil was bought by his friend Manet.
Sisley suffered from cancer of the throat from which he eventually died at the age of 59 in his beloved village of Moret-sur-Loing. His inability to sell his works meant that had lived most of his adult life in poverty due. He had also been overshadowed by Monet, perhaps because he was less flamboyant than him, and it was only after his death that his paintings began to be in demand.
You can find a great collection of Alfred Sisley patterns to use with SegPlayPC ™ here: http://www.segmation.com/products_pc_patternsets.asp#SIS
Art in the News:
Watteau Resurfaces After 160 Years; Expected To Fetch Record Price
A long-lost masterpiece by French painter Jean-Antoine Watteau that was thought to have been destroyed was discovered during a routine valuation in an English country house. The owners had no idea of the value of the painting in their possession; the last valuation dated from 1848.
The painting “La Surprise” is considered to be one of the artist’s finest works. It was painted around 1718 and depicts an actor sitting on a stone bench playing the guitar while glancing at a couple in a loving embrace. Its existence was known only through prints made sometime in the 18th century and a copy of the original which hangs in Buckingham Palace.
Reuters reports that the masterpiece, which is to be auctioned by Christie’s New York in July, is expected to beat all records for a Watteau and is estimated to fetch around US$ 10 million.
Provocative Painting of Venus Approved for Exhibition Poster
The London Underground has unbanned a painting depicting a nude Venus. The transport system had considered that the 16th century painting by German Renaissance artist Lucas Cranach the Elder too suggestive to advertise the exhibition of his works at London’s Royal Academy.
The masterpiece portrays Venus wearing absolutely nothing but her seductive smile—from every angle—and was chosen by the Royal Academy to advertise the exhibition because they consider it to be one of Cranach’s finest works, capturing the spirit of the German Reformation.
Fortunately for the Royal Academy, Reuters reports that the London Underground admitted it made a mistake in banning the poster and it is now displayed in Tube stations all over the capital, just in time for the opening of the exhibition.
Outside the Lines
Alfred Sisley’s painting “The Lane of Poplars at Moret” has been stolen three times from a museum in France. The first time, the painting was found a few days later in a sewer in Marseilles. The second time, it was stolen by the museum’s curator. The third time was in August 2007 and it’s still missing.
In 1891 French Impressionist Claude Monet hit lucky and won 100,000 Francs in the French National Lottery. His winnings enabled him to quit his job and devote himself to his art.
August Rodin’s sculpture The Bronze Period was considered to be so realistic that when it was first shown at an exhibition in Paris in 1878, viewers believed there was a real, live model inside the cast.
Vincent Van Gogh once taught mathematics and languages at a school in London, England.