Author Archives: Kirt D Tisdale

About Kirt D Tisdale

Growing up in an artistic family, I found my venue was photography. In college I was able to work with equipment that I would not have had the chance to work with on my own, from the camera equipment to a dark room (yes, that was the era of film). Over the years and with the onset of the digital age, I have been able to augment my photography with painting, turning my photographs into oils and watercolors. Over the years, I have amassed a portfolio that has been enjoyed by family and friends. I have done a number of commercial and private projects utilizing whatever concept the buyer has given me and turned their walls into "Wall Galleries". I have been married for 41 years and my wife and I have raised three incredible daughters. Please check out my online art gallery: www.thewallgallery.com and my facebook page: www.facebook.com/TheWallGallery.KirtTisdale

Getting Non-Linear With Urban High-Rises – Featured Art Prints

Anyone who has been following my work, knows I have a fascination with architecture. I did start studying architecture in high school and always thought I would go to some architectural school, etc. etc. etc. Problem was my parents both worked for a private four-year liberal arts college in Iowa which is where all of my siblings and I ended up going (could be the deal on tuition costs for dependents of employees of the college – four of us so you do the math). I ended up with a major in business which to me seemed the most practical. Having said all of that, it was that same school where I was introduced to photography and dark rooms which ultimately led to the things you see here. OK, so that explains my fascination with architecture and why you see a lot of it in my work. Today I wanted to show an interesting mix between that love of architecture and creative artistic presentation. I have done a number of shots of urban high-rises which of course are very linear and rise into the sky in very straight lines. Mixing the fauvism style and technique which presents non-linear and abstract looks to subjects with urban structures results in the attached two art prints. Both prints create an abstract and playful approach to rigid downtown buildings (Seattle in both cases).

 

 

Thoughts?

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The Seattle Great Wheel – Angles and Architectural Elements

Always looking for an interesting aspect or angle to a subject matter, I have attached two prints I created of The Seattle Great Wheel. The official website to the Seattle Great Wheel is here (the website has a great overall picture of the ferris wheel at the end of pier 57 along the bay front of downtown Seattle). It really is an impressive ferris wheel and has fast become one of the main attractions in downtown Seattle.

I did a photo shoot a few years back and spent quite awhile trying to capture unique shots of this very large ferris wheel. I wanted something a little different to highlight the architectural detail of this beautiful wheel. As I went through the shots and started narrowing it down to unique angles, I thought that with the geometric simplicity of the structure, why not try some of these angles in a sketching or ink pen style…both simplistic in visual appearance and focusing specifically on the structure.

With the help of Adobe Photoshop I came up with these prints that portray two very different angles and perspectives of the gondolas as they went around the large wheel.

 

“Seattle Great Wheel”

Thoughts?

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What Am I Seeing? Three Very Different Black and White Photographs

This week I wanted to take a look at three very different black and white photographs and tell you what I see.

As I have mentioned in my posts, I shoot everything in Raw format which means I shoot digitally capturing tremendous detail. It does take up memory and believe me my portfolio and archives have their own hard drive because of it. The reason I shoot with that much definition is that it allows me to “play’ with the end picture more.

The first picture is a cityscape of downtown Seattle with the Space Needle featured front and center. What do I see? I see the downtown towers and Space Needle sharply defined…very bold straight edges. I see the architecture dominating the capture because of that factor. As an additional element, I see the sharp contrast of the cloud formations from the high level clouds to the puffy cumulous in the background.  I see an architectural statement of Seattle with the subtle element of weather which Seattle is known for.

From a cityscape to a farm. What do I see? I see a mood created from an abandoned farm highlighted by showing it in black and white. I see barren tree branches and collapsing buildings that have a lonely element with no life. The black and white presentation allows this mood to be front and center without getting distracted by pops of color.

From the farm to Old Point Loma Lighthouse sitting on the entrance to San Diego Bay in Cabrillo National Monument. What do I see? I see the top of a lighthouse where the simple architecture of the structure points your eye upward to the light. I see what is a deep blue sky not taking center stage because the presentation in black and white makes it a supporting gray backdrop to the white structure and the intricate architecture of the top of the lighthouse.

Thoughts?

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Subtle Softening Photographs of Covered Bridges

This week, in keeping with the theme from last week (a behind the scenes peek of how I digitally create these art prints), I wanted to share a technique I used with these three examples of covered bridges in Oregon. As I stated last week, I have been using Adobe Photoshop forever. I love the variety of features and flexibility it gives me not only with my photography, but also in creating digitally painted art.

The three prints I have attached came from a photo shoot I did a number of years ago in Oregon. All three look like three photographs of covered bridges and in reality they are. If you look closer, you will see that the edges and detail are softened slightly…ever so slightly to just give the prints a subtle softness. It’s a minor change I created by using one of Adobe’s filters. I started with the photographs in Adobe and eliminated any background “noise” such as electrical wires. In these shots that was about the only doctoring I did to the actual photograph. The next step was to soften them slightly, so I used their watercolor filter. In that filter you can control numerous elements such as pixel size of softness..type of softness and intensity. With numerous trial and error attempts, I settled on a level I liked. A subtle watercolor effect that you see more easily in the trees, but it also soften the edges of the bridges…again very subtle, but an overall softening.

Thoughts?

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Soft Abstract Roses – Featured Art Prints

I love taking macro photographic shots of rose buds and blooms. The colors, texture, etc. create such beautiful visual imagery. Today, I wanted to feature a softer take on rose blooms and then explain how I created them by taking a step back through the process I use to create this type of digital art. I have used Adobe Photoshop for years….probably since it first came out. I remember taking classes from the University of San Diego on how to get the most out of it from an artist perspective. Trust me, it was many years and many versions ago. What I love about the program is the ability to do layers for each of the steps I go through. These roses are a great example of the process, so I will walk you through a simplified version of it.

I start with my macro photography of the rose bloom as the background layer. I then open an empty layer on top of it and using an ink stroke tool (Photoshop), draw the edges and shapes I want to highlight in black. Then I create another layer and pick a digital brush style I like (the brush style I picked here creates an almost air brush look..soft edges). On the blank layer I paint larger areas of colors by painting over the photograph if you will. The large areas of similar colors create the abstract look. I then move the “ink stroke layer” to the top of the layers, eliminate the bottom photograph, merge the layers and the end result is what you are looking at (simplified version as I actually open many laters typically for each color tone).

I also would like to mention that for the painting layer, there are numerous programs out there that can take your photograph and turn it into just about any style of painting. I use these programs in cases where I want to keep the detail of the photograph and am looking for more 3-D brush strokes as you would see in oil paintings. Even in that scenario, I come back in and work the resulting art print with some of the detail I described here.

This is a quick and simple walk through of my process that in actuality is very tedious and for every print I publish, five to seven are trashed by me for not liking the end result.

Thoughts?

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Carlsbad, California – Coastal Sunset

Carlsbad, California is located in North San Diego County – north of the city of San Diego proper.  It sits along the coastline and the village center is just blocks from the beach. This particular setting is just south of the village center where there is a walkway along the coast just above the beach (notice the fence as it lines the walkway above the beach). To get down to the beach there are long stairs scattered periodically for access. I have a number of art prints done in various styles from this setting. What I wanted to feature today was this particular print I did using more subtle earth tones instead of bright vibrant colors. It creates a different visual experience and supports a more relaxed mood with the setting sun. I used the same technique I talked about last week (impasto) to create the thick bold brush strokes.

Thoughts?

Please visit my main gallery: TheWallGallery (All domestic orders over $50.00 – free shipping!)

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Street Scenes – Featured Art Prints

I have a gallery that focuses on “Street Scenes”, which is where these three prints come from. Most of my art in this genre is more pedestrian oriented and/or simple scenes of streets to highlight architecture of the buildings along that street or to create visual depth.

With these three prints, I used a technique that creates an impasto style (impasto: the process of laying on paint or pigment thickly to allow the brush strokes to stand out from the surface). With this style I also use bright colors to compliment the bold brush strokes.

The first print is of Whistler, British Columbia during the fall. Whistler is a beautiful village known for great winter skiing. What I liked about the village was the architecture and pedestrian friendly streets. You can feel yourself wandering down this street just enjoying the afternoon.

With this second art print, same concept just a totally different location. This particular print is of a New England Village in the spring. I was drawn to this scene because of the angle giving the street depth and intrigue with the pedestrians scattered.

My final art print is again a New England village, with the line of quaint street lights creating depth and complimenting the brick sidewalk.

Thoughts?

Please visit my main gallery: TheWallGallery (All domestic orders over $50.00 – free shipping!)

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