THE ART OF DANIEL MESSNER 

I’m sure you guessed the relationship. Daniel Messner is my son. He attends College upstate New York.  He also has been an active collaborator in my journey to break my 30 year art block.  This post is to honor his love and support to his mom. 

First I want to show his artistic expression when he was around 7 years old.  When I broke my art block I did at a paint your own pottery place in Brooklyn. He reluctantly came with me but this is what came out of showing up. 

 

Ceramic Glazed Tile by Daniel Messner

 

This is my favorite tile.  Kudos Dan!

Here we are at my first show at the Art Students League in New York. I believe it was 2006. 

  

BEING LARGE AS AN ARTIST 

I have been on a journey in the last year plus creating a business that promotes art for arts sake. I am a 64 year old woman artist who came out of the cave in 2009 when I was laid off of a 20 year job as a legal secretary.  I didn’t know that this was the start of being reborn. 
I was a slave to the belief that art would never support me.  I was 50 years old when I finally broke my 30 year artist block and came back to joy of who I truly am.   I have not gone back to the security of a corporate job since. 
THIS IS NOT AN EASY TASK!!   Especially with ADHD and learning disabilities.  However, I finally became the artist I was meant to be.   I didn’t think twice as I took the actions to be showing my work.   There were many times I was the only woman and the oldest artist in a group show.  But I knew I was a good artist. I never compared myself to others and was able to engage all the artists as comrades.  

For the first time I stopped trying to be better than others.  I am an artist among artists.  So I can be connected with people whatever age they are.  I feel I can be any age in my mind.  I have the joy of living. 

So my business is about engaging people to be creative.  I’m teaching iPad painting classes around the Hudson Valley in New York.  I got my first iPad in 2011 for my 60th birthday.   I found art apps and my world of creativity exploded. I have become a more prolific artist with this technology. 

I’m the Pied Piper of iPad art and I’m finally being heard.  I was co-curator at an exhibition on digital art with a focus on iPad painting.  I’m teaching workshops at gallery.  The Riverdale Press gave a good review of the show.  The community is aware of my name.  

Here is my mission statement for Fearless Creativity Art for Arts Sake:

“FEARLESS CREATIVITY is about art is important for everyone. Creativity is not just for the talented.  The mission of Fearless Creativity is to engage people who believe they are not creative by participating in non-judgmental art classes using traditional art mediums and technology with iPads and smartphones.  In doing art for fun and expression they will experience a psychic change in how they are in the world.  Today’s world is a fearful place.  More than ever people experience worry and depression.  The result is high levels of cortisol consistently destroying health.  Art soothes the mind and helps us solve problems creatively.  It reduces stress and lowers cortisol so are health improves.  Our lives expand, love increases and we have hope. “

 

Created by Jean Messner on iPad using ArtRage app

 


THE ART OF THE LINE-DRAWING

1968 pen and ink

Pen and marker drawing 1969

 

image

Life Drawing 2005

image

1969 charcoal drawing done at the Art Students League

image

Watercolor sketch 2000

1970 fashion art

Pen & wash 1970

image

Charcoal sketch 2004

1968 fashion doodle

Marker & Pencil 1966

They say a good artist begins with learning drawing skills.  I mastered my drawing skills beginning with drawing on the furniture at 3.  Most of my artwork was drawing people when I began. I wanted to be a fashion illustrator when I was in high school.

5524790348_734ab5bb35_o

Colored Markers 1970

 

 

HOMAGE TO VAN GOGH

My love affair with the work of Van Gogh began in high school.  A lot of people comment that my work is like Van Gogh. Or is Van Gogh’s work like mine??  Here’s to the inner Van Gogh in my work over the years. 

   
    
    
    
    
    
    
   

SOME DAYS IT’S HARDER TO GET OUT OF THE CAVE 

THE CAVE … warm and dark … no people to drive you crazy … no expectations to meet!

  
I used to love the cave.  But the cave was a hide out from life.  Today I redecorated my cave.  I call it the castle of creativity. It’s not dark.  Large trees outside my window are active with squirrels running up and down for entertainment. My easel next to the window with canvas ready to paint.  Solitude is not hiding anymore. Solitude is art. 

  

PAINTING CLOUDS

THE CLOUD… A picture show in the sky.  Morphing into many shapes and colors.  Fantasy animal shapes I always saw as a child.  Some sweep you along in translucent sinewy ribbons darting across the sky. Some are are voluptuous and billowing castles.  But the storm cloud is in a class by itself.  A sultry samba of darkness- a feast for the eyes.  The clouds are reckless building up to a dazzling display of smoldering drama.  And then in seconds RAIN. 

So when I was learning to paint landscapes I studied clouds.  I just thought you painted clouds with Titanium White.  It looked terrible. But as I looked at my favorite landscape painters I noticed their clouds had many colors.  The colors gave depth.  

BRUSHSTROKES … Clouds I believed were easy to paint. Just blob the paint on canvas.  I realized it wasn’t as easy as I thought.  There’s a technique and since I was teaching myself I just researched brush strokes.  

I MUST BE HONEST, I DON’T UNDERSTAND MOST OF THE INSTRUCTIONS IN ART BOOKS.  SO I JUST DID MY OWN EXPERIMENTS. 

I have an ADHD brain and I have learned that too much information destroys my creativity. Here are some of my clouds over the years. 

   

    
    
 

A TREASURE HIDDEN IN A BATHROOM 

THIS IS A STORY ABOUT THE ARTIST YASOU KUNIYOSHI AND HOW I BECAME AN ART DETECTIVE. 

“At the League my life began to take on a real meaning. . . . I had a great hunger for friends and companionship as a natural reaction to my lonely wanderings. At the League I found the warmth and kindness which I sorely needed.”— Yasou Kuniyoshi

  

When Yasuo Kuniyoshi began studying in New York City at the Art Students League in 1916 he tried and failed to get into George Bellows’ popular painting class. Instead, he studied with Kenneth Hayes Miller, who proved to be a valuable influence on Kuniyoshi’s artistic trajectory. Soon after assuming the role of teacher himself in 1933, also at the Art Students League, Kuniyoshi’s own classes became difficult to get into. He was immensely popular with his charges. In the classroom, he engaged students with questions about process and subject matter, not just technique, encouraging them to develop a curiosity about how to represent their unique experiences of the world. This method mirrored his own approach to painting.

I was giving private painting class to a wonderful woman who had visual impairment due to a double stroke. She abandoned herself to creativity and the painting expanded her life. We worked for 2 years in her home and her work was so special because of her impairment.  It was a joy to watch  

What does that have to do with Kuniyoshi?

When I used the bathroom in my client’s home, I kept looking at an interesting framed print there. It was an unusual drawing and I kept thinking this is something important. I looked at the signature one visit and could make it out as Kuniyoshi. I knew Kuniyoshi because he was a former Art Students League instructor in the 1940’s.  I had studied his work on on the internet as I became educated in various artists who were not well known.  Upon Discovering the signature, I found out my client bought it many years ago in a flea market for next to nothing.  I told her what I knew about the artist and said she might have an original print that was valuable. I told her to take it out of the bathroom immediately to prevent any more water damage. Then we searched the Internet and YES it was his print from a series. Now we needed to find out if it was original. My client made an appointment with a Sotheby’s print specialist. 

And according to Sotheby’s IT IS AN ORIGINAL!!!  The value $8,000. She removed the old frame had it framed and it is over the couch.  She had a treasure and it was hiding in the bathroom. I’m grateful that I could see the treasure due to my art knowledge. 

Why Kuniyoshi is an artist I admire is because he taught his students to PUT YOURSELF IN THE ART.

WHAT’S IN YOUR BATHROOM? 

Here is the print my client owns: