A Year with
is on view at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, NYC, from May 3 – June 19. This
annual exhibition showcases select artworks by students in grades 2-6 (from 10
public schools that represent the city’s five boroughs) who participated in
Learning Through Art—the pioneering arts education program of the Museum.
Approximately 100 creative and imaginative works, including assemblage,
collages, drawings, paintings, prints, photographs and sculptures will be on
display. Founded in 1970 by Natalie Kovner Lieberman, the LTA program has
served nearly 150,000 children and their families.
3D Projection Devices for the Artist or Craftsperson
For centuries, artists have used a variety of means to
project images to aid in the capture of subjects. In the 1600's, for
instance, artists began to employ the camera obscura, a primitive box/lens
combination that helped them capture very precise likenesses. Today our
choices are wide, and the use of projection machines can be applied to a
variety of artistic applications.
As "start-up" quality, or for artists who work in
small format, several manufacturers offer simple units that enlarge and
project small images like photographs. This type of equipment is usually
illuminated by a conventional incandescent light bulb, generally from 60 to
100 watts. Although this style of projector is not very powerful (the image
is not overly bright), if used in controlled environments, it offers a very
inexpensive way to transfer images to the work surface.
The operation is very easy and straightforward: The
selected picture is placed beneath the unit. It is illuminated by a bulb,
and then reflected through the lens and onto the canvas, wall, etc. The
distance between the projection unit and the drawing surface usually
dictates the projected image size. To facilitate the use of larger masters,
illustrations can be projected in sections. This is easily done by first
drawing a grid over the master, dividing it into segments the size of the
viewing area of the projector. Use the grid lines to position the image for
an exact match of sections.
There are projectors available in a wide range of
costs, and features can help with selection. Those features include
top-loading screens rather than bottom access, floor and table stands and
more powerful halogen lamps or photo quality bulbs that afford brighter
images. Some units offer larger fields of image capture, a few as large as
10" X 10" and 8" X 11".Size of projected illumination can range from 4X to
1500X, depending on the unit and application selected. One available model
can even project the image of a three-dimensional object. Several models can
project slides as well as opaque images. Reductions up to 70% are also
possible, a function that can be useful in many art and craft applications.
Removing and then reversing the lens position usually achieves this.
Artists and craftspersons alike should explore the
options and versatility of projectors. They can be very effective as time-
and labor-saving tools, given the fact that they eliminate the task scale,
size and proportion interpretation by the artist. Rather than draw the
image, simply use a projector to capture it and immediately transfer it to
the wall or canvas or wherever desired. All that remains is the linear
delineation of the subject and the actual application of art technique.
Crafters are sometimes not versed or disinterested in
drawing skills and may struggle with shape and subject likeness. Any
projection system would be a boon to their success because drawing is
eliminated. Simply insert a picture into the viewing area of the unit,
project the image and copy it (perfectly) onto your project. No time is
invested unnecessarily, and there is one less obstacle in the way of
Projection units are especially useful to muralists or
artists who work in large scale because of the physical size of their works.
Small drawings or initial sketches can be enlarged onto the large work
surface and copied. When this initial step of image transfer is eliminated,
time and energy spent on manual transfer can be applied to the completion of
the project. More work can be done in a much smaller window of time and this
often translates to more income or profit.
Artists who demand stark realism in their work and can
work from slide imagery may benefit greatly from the use of slide
reproduction and enlargement. Rather than invest time in drawing an original
scene, simply project a slide onto the chosen surface and then copy it. Many
hours of time can be saved, especially on large works, and all detail is
depicted. Watercolorists can actually paint their works while the image is
projected onto the paper. Sharp edges and clear shapes can be very easily
captured in this manner. There are no pencil lines needed, so the end result
is one of extreme clarity and startling craftsmanship.
Of course there are purists who consider the use of
any mechanical apparatus a cop-out or feel somehow it is like cheating. But
if you are looking for a way to cut time from your work schedule, thereby
enabling you to create a higher volume of quality art, projection devices
offer many ways to assist you. Also consider that the projection devices
make it possible to paint on any surface--walls, ceilings, and the sides of
vans--as well as desktop drawing or easel painting.
Somewhere in the varied selections is a projection
unit that fits the need of nearly any artist or craftsperson. Retail prices
range from around $20 for a very simple, light bulb unit to around $450 for
a deluxe, large-format model. Also available are high quality light tables
and tracing devices, evenly illuminated for fast, comfortable tracing of
designs. Many sizes are available in a wide price range.
Most retail stores have both types of units set up so
you can see how they are used and what model might best suit your needs.
Explore the furniture department of an art supply center soon or explore
these websites for more information and tips on using projectors:
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