Daryl Urig’s 31 Days, 31 Paintings, Online May Auction.

American Artist Daryl Urig is having a 31 day painting event in May 2009. He will paint a painting a day for 31 days then auction them off at http://darylurig.com/
Starts May 1st and runs through June 15th 2009.

Collectors and paintings enthusiasts are encouraged to have fun and bid on his paintings.
It is an exciting way to collect and have an opportunity to purchase one of his fine paintings.


American Artist Daryl Urig is a nationally recognized oil painter and a member of the Portrait Society of America, Oil Painters of America and Cincinnati Art Club.

“If you like American art like I do” says Daryl Urig, “You will want to visit this museum and see so many great American Artists. You don’t hear much about us, but we have been giving American painting its own place in art history.”

The Butler Institute of America located in Youngstown, Ohio. Here is their web address: http://www.butlerart.com/

Paint a Portrait from a Photo or Life? What is the best rule?

As an artist, you hear a lot about this quandary. Both approaches have supporters, but like most things in a subjective field, neither proves to be a clear winner.

It irks me when people say one approach is better than the other, or that one makes you a true artist. The real truth is: you can learn a lot from either approach.

I’ve heard small groups discuss using photography a method of cheating that prevents someone from becoming an artist.  Or that it makes doing art so easy that anyone who uses this process can make instant art. I wish any form of art was that easy.

We, who have tried using photographic reference, know that it does not magically create art. In fact, it’s very difficult to use photographic reference. The camera offers a snapshot of the surface, but it also adds much distortion. Only a very good painter can figure out where to match, change and redraw to get the right illusion of 3-d form on a 2-d surface. Copying exactly, if it were even possible, is only a good starting place.

I think rendering a painting from photographs helps develop the artist’s eye for color. It’s much easier to see warm and cool colors from photographs. However, artists must be careful because photos can also distort certain colors, which appear as grey and brown tones.

In truth, using photos is just a good starting point. It helps you render quick proportions that help speed up the painting process. But they only help create a rough sketch, not a masterpiece. It’s the artists’ job to do this.

Overall, I think it’s easier to draw or paint from life. Painting plein air allows you to immerse yourself in the image you’re rendering.  But if you choose to paint plein air, you must understand that the light will change as the day goes on. You’ll also have to deal with the movements of the model.

My friend, Owen Findsen told me, “We must follow the rules of art; this is, until something better comes along.”  Artists must be creative in all our endeavors and not box ourselves in with heretical thoughts or notions.  So for those of you who have been held back by hindering rules, I implore you, break the rules, and observe Urig’s Rule #1: “You can create art from life or photos!” Then, create!

A Tip from a Painter on Overcoming a Creative Block

I’ve heard other painters discuss a creative block. The thought of this terrifies me. Luckily, in 30 years of painting and designing, I cannot remember this happening.

I am constantly thinking of my next image. Life bombards everyone with stimuli, but an artist must filter it in order to come up with their next visual.

Some painters choose to paint in a consistent style. But I like to depict something new in each series of images. I think my attempt to change styles allows me to avoid creative stagnation and lulls.

For example, my “Woman in the Garden” paintings glow with full color, using contrasting thick and thin paint.  Whereas “Take a Hike” is an explosion of color and texture – a realistic and semi abstract painting.  Furthermore, there’s the collection of grey paintings in my “Keepsake Portraits.” Even all of the paintings from my sketch group look different.

Some people argue that abstract painters, like Picasso, always worked in the same style. But I never saw Pablo Picasso as stagnant. To me, he was an energized, prolific creator who moved in different directions with his artwork while upholding a subtle thread of himself in each painting.

Over time, a uniform style may emerge and I’ll have a total consistency in my work. But my fear is when that happens, I’m dead. And I’m not responding, experimenting or exploring all that is around me. In my opinion, if you force yourself to one style, you self-create a painter’s creative block.