Posts by Naomi VanDoren
The Harvest Festival - Show Wrap-up

This fall I took on a whole new type of art show, The Harvest Festival, and I wanted to share a little bit of my experience with you.

As an independent artist that is building an audience and making a fair portion of my income from shows like this I think it's important to share my own takeaways in the hopes that someone else can learn from my experiences. If you follow my YouTube channel you already know that I'm fairly candid with the information I share and I hope to be able to bring that same kind of candor here to my blog as well.

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Illuxcon 2017

This year was my third year attending one of my favorite art events of the year, Illuxcon.

Illuxcon is it's own kind of show. It's hard to describe because there are few shows that I've found that are similar to it. The best that I can do is use their own words. Illuxcon is:

A ground-breaking art show, symposium, and celebration dedicated solely to imaginative realism—bringing artists, students, collectors, and art fans together for an annual gathering intended to inspire and create further awareness and zeal for imaginative realism and all that’s encompassed in the realm of the fantastic.
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"Immersed in Blue" - Watercolor Painting

I started this painting in a location where I have started many others, out at the coffee shop with a friend. There is something about being out in the bustling environment that allows me to focus in on things that I normally could. To harness ideas that I normally wouldn't approach.

For this painting, I wanted to play with more underwater themes. I love the drifting sea and the magical elements one can find within it. I love the ocean and would like to play more around these themes in future.

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The Book of Spells - A watercolor painting for the Month of Love

A watercolor painting for the Month of Love challenge theme "Secrets".

This year I will be creating art centered around my foxdragon character and exploring more the relationship between it and a little girl and more my fantastical environments. "The Book of Spells" was created for the challenge theme secrets. I loved the idea of these two friends meeting in a vast leafy jungle, hidden under layers of monstera plants.

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"Dream" Watercolor Painting

I wanted to take the time to share with you a little of my process and thinking behind my most recent painting "Dream".

As with much of my work recently it was created from my inspiration and a desire to incorporate pieces of my life while living in Asia. Many of you know that I grew up in Indonesia and also spent some time in Japan. There I found lush Japanese gardens with beautiful temples and arching bridges. A harmony between man and nature.

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"First Kiss" - A painting for the Month of Love challenge

We are nearing the end of February and also the end of the month long challenge I've been participating in - the Month of Love (an art event featuring a selection of artists and a new challenge/theme each week). This week's theme is "Fantasy" and I knew from the beginning of this month that this was a week I was definitely going to participate in.

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"The Gift" - A painting for the Month of Love challenge

As we begin the second week of February I am also starting the second week of the Month of Love challenge; a month-long art event featuring a selection of artists and a new challenge (theme) each week. This week's theme is "Lost in Translation".

The Language of Love has many dialects. Sometimes we’re fluent and other times… it’s all Greek. 

Among many ideas the one that stood out the most on paper was this one, a little girl sharing a flower with a robot friend. I can't imagine what this giant metal automaton must be thinking but I imagine it isn't "I like you".

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"Courage" - A painting for the Month of Love Chellenge

When I began brainstorming ideas for this first week's topic of "heroes" I kept coming back to the heroes nature and not to one specific person. In many of my ideas and word lists the theme of a hero being someone who protects the innocent, regardless of their own abilities, kept coming back to me and stuck.

I started with a quick sketch of a woman with a child fending off a dragon and went from there. Initially, the woman was going to be a knight but I decided early on that I wanted to make her more vulnerable and also a part of the larger world I have been creating (more on that later).

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