Archive for the ‘Artwork’ Category

New Owl Painting And Video

First post of 2020. I’ve started the year off being as productive as possible. Before 2020 was upon us I told myself I was going to focus on making bigger paintings, but here I am making a series of 3.5″ x 7″ paintings. In my defense, I had some paintings in the works that weren’t quite finished, so I am working on those and then I really would like to make some bigger paintings this year. Anyway…for now I have one new piece to show you.

This is Ginger. She’s 3.5″ x 7″, mixed media on wood with epoxy resin coating. She’s available in my online shop or in person at Viva Paso – 1211 Pine St in downtown Paso Robles.

You know, come to think of it, I have more than one new piece to show you. I finished these next two a few weeks ago, so you might have seen them on Instagram, but if not, here ya go.


“Gilligan”
3.5″ x 7″ – mixed media on wood.
Available in my online shop.


“Mary Ann”
3.5″ x 7″ – mixed media on wood.
Available in my online shop.

Yes, I am using all the characters names from Gilligan’s Island. I have a few more to go, so be on the lookout for Lovey, Thurston, The Skipper, and The Professor.

Enjoy!
– Jeff

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What, that’s enough for you? Fine…
follow me on the IG: @jeffclaassen.
and on TikTok: @jeffclaassen

10 New Mini Paintings

I have been obsessed with making these little 3″ square paintings. Here’s a little video showing the newest batch.

All of these are one of a kind hand painted originals. They are 3″ x 3″ canvases and are available on my site for $30 each. Yes, the awesome little easels are included.

If for some reason watching a video makes you cringe here are photos of the paintings in all of their 3″ glory.


“Prankster” – adopt me


“Gordie” – take me home


“Denny” – let’s hang out


“Philip” – hold me


“Joel” – let’s get donuts


“Ace” – fly with me


“Teddy” – kiss me


“Chris” – let’s be friends


“Lydia” – be my roommate


“Vern” – be my roommate

And there you have it…that is what 10 mini canvas paintings look like.
Thanks for checking them out!

– Jeff

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If that wasn’t enough for you…
– I’m now on TikTok
– Follow on The Gram: @jeffclaassen

Digital Art Sunday: Bugs Bunny Appropriation

About a year ago I messed around a little with making some appropriation art. There’s something about it that doesn’t totally sit well with me, which is weird because there is a lot of appropriation art that I do like. It just makes sense that if I like some of it then I should make some of my own. Why not put my own spin on appropriating popular images? Because, let’s face it, there is a lot of questionable appropriations out there. I certainly wouldn’t be able to single handedly ruin the art form. I don’t really have to dig too deep to realize why appropriating makes me a little queasy. Simply put, it’s just low hanging fruit. There are so many artists, especially on Instagram, who seem to have made an entire career out of painting other peoples images. Some of them do it in a clever way with their own unique twist and others are straight up knock offs. The outsiders perspective (mine, at least) is that all of them are laughing all the way to the bank.

Quick interruption, shouldn’t the phrase “laughing all the way to the bank” be phasing out by now? To get with the times we need to start saying, “laughing all the way to Venmo” or “laughing all the way to Square” or “laughing all the way to PayPal”. Ok, moving on…

And it makes sense that some artists have made appropriating a career. It’s the same reason there are so many remakes/reboots in the movie industry. The path has been paved. Why risk making something new that nobody knows about and attempt to make that new thing popular? It’s so much easier to take something that is already popular with a built in fanbase and just remake that. Like I said, it makes me a little queasy, it’s low hanging fruit, and in way it sort of lacks integrity. After I drew my first appropriation piece (my take on Jiminy Cricket) it took me about three months before I posted it on Instagram. Before that I only showed it to maybe three people. The people I showed it to were supportive of it, which was nice, but I still waited awhile before posting it online for the whole internet to see. I finally got over my apprehension because I realized I’m the only one thinking this much about it, meaning nobody cares. And at the end of the day, making art is fun and if I enjoy the process of making something that’s the important part for me. If the outcome is a success that’s just a bonus. Also, what I did wasn’t a straight up knock off. I added my own style to the original source, which, in the world of appropriation art, is taking something that exists and making it your own. That’s a big difference compared to the artists out there taking something that exists and copying it. I tried my best not to do that.

I could go on and on about this topic, but I’ll stop for now and file it away for another time. Anyway, I posted this Bugs Bunny piece on Instagram back in May and all I wrote for the caption was, “What’s up, Doc?” and now I’ll expand on that. I grew up watching Bugs Bunny. I know a lot of people my age did, but I was really into it. I even had that Looney Toons book with the real life animation cell in it. That totally fascinated me. I had no idea how cartoons were made and when I saw that animation cell in the book it was pretty mind blowing. What I’m trying to say is that I chose Bugs Bunny to appropriate because he really meant a lot to me and I’ve been a true Bugs fan for as long as I can remember. This wasn’t just a mindless decision based on the fact that Bugs Bunny is popular.

I have yet to make an actual painting appropriating a popular character from our culture and I’m not sure if or when I will. For now, since I’m sticking to the digital realm with my appropriation art, I thought it would be fun to throw the characters into my own photos. Here’s the original photo that I used for the Bugs Bunny piece.

I took this photo in the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park earlier this year. It might seem random, but to me it makes perfect sense for Bugs Bunny.

I’m curious what your thoughts are about appropriation art. Not just mine, but the art form in general. Let me know.

Hope you had a fantastic weekend.

– Jeff

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Want to see more?
Check out Jiminy Cricket. I chose him as my first one because he’s not only a cool looking character, but the shape of his head was perfect for the faces I paint.
And also Fred Flinstone. I chose him because I watched the Flinstones when I was a kid and I mistakenly thought Fred’s head was also the perfect shape for the faces I paint. It turned out super ugly, so I hope you get a good laugh at it.

Digital Art Sunday

Ok, first things first. “Digital Art Sunday” is not a thing. I just suck at coming up with titles. At least you know what you’re in for by the title alone. So, here we go!

All of these were made using the Procreate App, iPad Pro, and Apple Pencil.

I don’t really have a title for this guy yet because I might add some more stuff. Other than the perfectly spaced dots that make up his hair and the drips coming off the bottom of his face it actually looks like it could have been painted. At least the background and the white splatter. This is kind of funny to me because my brain tells me if I’m going to draw digitally I should embrace that and make it look digital. If I want it to look like a painting I might as well just make a painting. Ah, but that’s my own silly struggle. In the end I suppose this is a good mix of the two. On the other hand, I just like making stuff and I usually only draw on the iPad when I can’t paint. You know, like when I’m in the car waiting for Elliott to get out of school or when I’m at Red Scooter Deli waiting for them to make me an Iced S’mores Latte.

I love bunnies. When I look close at this I find myself asking, “what gives it away that this is a digital drawing?” The victorian design in the back could really go either way. I’ve used extremely similar designs on paintings with screen printing as well as spray painted stencils. If I didn’t know any better it could be a tough call. However, for me, the whiskers are a dead giveaway. The perfect oval shape of his little bunny nose too. I love this background and the fun thing about digital art is that I can easily change the colors and use the same background image on another piece.

This one doesn’t look painted at all and that’s great. I’m trying to do that more and more because, like I said earlier, my brain struggles with this and I need to embrace the digital look. I do love that Procreate has a “brush” that makes the woodgrain background. That’s fun. Also, I drew the majority of this while at Red Scooter Deli waiting for them to make me an Iced S’mores Latte. Because that was almost the only time I worked on this it probably took me about 2 months to finish, which, if you think about it, is a great testament to how fast Red Scooter can make one of the most delicious drinks I know.


Yes, it’s Jason Voorhees from Friday The 13th. I drew this on the last Friday the 13th that happened in September and you can expect to see it again in December when we have another Friday the 13th. This “appropriation art” is a whole BIG topic I would love to get into, but I’ll save that for another post.

Another blog down. Eleven more to go.

I hope you’re loving Blogtober.

See you tomorrow!
– Jeff

P.S. I always feel douchey when I say “I made this on the iPad Pro with the Apple Pencil”, but I did use those things. It just makes me feel like I’m trying to brag about having cool shit and that’s not the case. It’s just that some people want to know the tools that are being used.

Anyway…
Thanks for looking!

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See me do more douchey stuff on YouTube.
And I would love if you followed my shop on Instagram: @vivapaso.

Elliott And Captain Underpants

It was only a matter of time, but Elliott has found out about Blogtober. He knows I made a couple of posts about him and now he wants EVERY post to be about him. He’s got a lot of ideas too. It’s adorable. He really wants everybody to see the Captain Underpants cut out that he made.

Elliott is super into cut outs, which I think is awesome. When I first starting using epoxy resin to cover my paintings back in 2004 the majority of my work was cut outs glued to painted wood panels. Like this:

Let’s just say cut outs are dear to my heart and I love that Elliott is making them and totally discovered them on his own.

After he made the BIG Captain Underpants he decided a smaller one needed to be made for on-the-go purposes. Elliott is totally one of those kids that has to grab as many things as possible as he walks out the door because he “needs” them wherever he goes. He’ll stuff his backpack to full capacity with Hot Wheels and plushies and things he “needs” and then he’ll never even open the backpack while we’re out and about. Anyway, this smaller Captain Underpants gets to go on adventures like trips to Trader Joe’s and whatnot. Although, now I think it might be crumpled up in the bottom of his backpack. So, it’s a good thing I took this photo when I did.

Oh yeah, he said it’s very important for you to know that the cape is a separate cut out piece that he taped on the back of Captain Underpants. I took a photo of the cape, but it didn’t quite capture the full glory of what the cape stands for, so you’ll just have to trust me.

That’s it for now.
Y’all have a good weekend!

– Jeff

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In other news:
– It’s Open Studios Tour in SLO County this weekend and next. Go check out some art! For more info visit: Arts Obispo
– I’ll be at Viva Paso all weekend. Come by and check out some art and all of the other goodies we have to offer. 1211 Pine in downtown Paso Robles.
– If you have a 10 year old or younger have them check out The Elliott Show.

Time Lapse Tuesday: Pirate Digital Doodle

So, I got this GREAT idea last month. You know how every day is National Something Day? Like, National Donut Day, which is one of my personal favorites. Well, for every day of the year there are actually multiple things honoring all kinds of random shit for that particular day. There is even a National Day Calendar to keep track of all of them. Take today, for example. You may not know it. In fact, you probably shouldn’t know it and I almost feel bad taking up your time telling you, but today is National Cheese Curd Day. It’s also National Grouch Day as well as National I Love Lucy Day. Why do any of these things get a day? I have no idea, but back on September 19 it was National Talk Like A Pirate Day. And this is where my GREAT idea came from. I figured I could use the absurdity of some of these National Days as a prompt for something to draw.

True to form, I did it once and then never again. I actually attempted a few more, but ditched those digital doodles because other things took priority. I do love the idea though and totally encourage you to give it a try if you find yourself stumped on what to draw on any particular day. What made it a GREAT idea to me is the hashtag possibilities. Obviously, I am not the first person to think of this. National Talk Like A Pirate Day was trending on Twitter and there were a lot people using #nationaltalklikeapirateday on Instagram, so it could be a good way to find some like minded individuals as well as promote your art and maybe pick a up a few fans along the way. Ok, enough jibber jabber. Here’s the time lapse.

Enjoy!

Thanks for reading and watching and hanging out.
See ya!

– Jeff

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Was that enough? Are you not satisfied yet? Well then…
Check out these “stump paintings” from five years ago.
If you like painting time lapses here are some more.

New Koi Journals Are Here

Super stoked to add a new design to my line of journals/notebooks!

But here’s the thing. I have to be honest with you. This Koi Journal has been available at Viva Paso since July. Guess what? This is how long it’s taken me just to take photos of it and make it available online. Can you say procrastinate? I can. I live it!

I’m not happy about my procrastination, but I do have other things going on so it can be difficult to decide what’s a real priority. Anyway, here a couple more photos of it.

And here are the details:
– paperback
– 6″ x 9″
– 120 lined pages

That pretty much sums it up. It’s a great size for on the go writing, to-do list making, journaling, etc. If you’d like to order one that would be super awesome. You can always come into Viva Paso (1211 Pine St. in downtown Paso Robles) to pick one up or you can now order online at: Jeff’s Koi Fish Journal

Thanks for looking!
And happy journaling.

– Jeff

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Need more of me in your life? Probably not, but in case you do…
Follow on Twitter: @jeffclaassen
Follow on Instagram: @jeffclaassen
Subscribe to my YouTube channel: youtube.com/jeffclaassen

Elliott’s Awesome Monsters

A couple of weeks ago I came home to these drawings waiting for me on the kitchen table.


Obviously, I love them. It’s just so cute. In the second photo you can see one sad girl, which is funny because he usually makes everything happy. My guess is he wasn’t pleased with the sad girl, but tried it out because that’s how I drew it, then immediately drew another one, but with a smile. I can only assume that he circled the happy one to designate it as the one to pay attention to.

As adorable as it as that he would copy me, make no mistake, this kid does not need any inspiration. Check these out. He has his own style totally unique to him. I love these.


He drew these because it’s October and he’s super excited about Halloween. He calls them Spooky Chomps. Even with the spiky teeth the Spooky Chomps are still cute and happy. One of my all time favorite things he’s drawn though is this window drawing. His grandparents keep glass markers in the house and as soon as Elliott found them he went to town on the slider.

Oh, I love it so much! For years he’s had a thing for drawing cyclops and triclops creatures, but he always makes them so cute and endearing that you just want to squeeze them.

That’s it for now. Thanks for looking!
– Jeff

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Not sick of me yet? Great!
Check out this Pumpkin Spice post from five years ago.
Watch a time lapse of me painting a Blockhead Owl.
Follow on Instagram: @jeffclaassen

Three Project Videos I Never Posted

Hello and happy Sunday!

Six days into daily blogging and I have no regrets. Yet. Today I’m taking it easy and posting some videos that have been on my channel for awhile, but I never shared them on here because I’ve been a bad blogger. On the real, making videos and writing blog posts is something I would love to do full time. I’ll try not to whine too much, but running a retail shop is a pretty demanding job, especially when you’re the one responsible for making a lot of the products in the shop. On the plus side, as an artist it’s really incredible to have a venue to sell my creations in. Ok, now on with the videos.

This first one is a late night vinyl sticker cutting session. I treated myself to a Cricut at the beginning of the year because besides wanting to make videos and blog full time, I also dream about being a crafty stay at home mom. Jokes aside (sorry fellow Cricut owners), the Cricut is a pretty amazing machine. Ok, here you go. Late night sticker making at Viva Paso.

This next one actually goes hand in hand with yesterday’s post about hanging artwork. It just goes to prove that I am constantly chasing this goal of getting 100 pieces of art on the walls. It’s a great goal to be chasing and if you think about it, if I wasn’t chasing it that would mean people are not buying artwork and I really like that people buy artwork. Thanks, art supporters! Anyway, this is basically a video version of yesterday’s post.

I probably don’t need to share this next one because I just realized it’s similar to the last one, but what the hell else am I going to do? Also, it’s only 1 minute and 19 seconds. In this video I focus more on how I view wall space in my shop as valuable real estate. It’s a very short video. Hope you enjoy it.

Thanks for watching!
-Jeff

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If you want to keep this party going…
Subscribe to my YouTube Channel.
Follow on Twitter.
Follow on Instagram.

New Work And A Little Behind The Scenes

This is how the main art wall looked when I got to work this morning.

The goal that I am always striving for in my shop is to have 100 pieces of art hanging on the walls. And if I can’t fit that many on the walls then I am almost willing to say “on display” because I do have matted prints that sit on a shelf and every once in a while I have framed pieces on a shelf too. But here’s the thing, I feel like that’s cheating because it would be SOOOOOOO easy to mat a bunch of prints in those clear sleeves you’ve probably seen around. I have nothing against those and I have them too, but I could easily order a bunch of mats and literally have 100 pieces of art “on display” within one week.

As of this typing I now have 38 pieces of art on the walls. I have 10 matted/sleeved prints and 2 framed prints on a shelf. So, technically, I have 50 art pieces on display. I’m exactly halfway to meeting my goal, but that doesn’t discourage me. It gives me something to work towards. This goal is almost unattainable because every time I sell a piece it’s like a step backwards, but I want to sell pieces, so this is one of the few goals in life where taking a step backwards works in my favor. Trust me, if I never meet this goal, but continue to sell artwork I’m a winner at the end of the day. With that said, today was a day where I was able to add pieces to the wall and here’s how that went.


I started the day with these 6 prints mounted on wood panels that needed to get wired and hung.


Wire is one of those things an artist can never have enough of. When I buy it I usually buy a few packs at a time and always think, “I’ll never run of of wire again!” Until I do.


This image is from a few years ago, but I’ve never had it available as a print on wood until a couple of weeks ago.


This is what the back of my limited edition prints on wood look like. Title written all sloppy like, numbered edition of 50, signed, dated, and wired. Ready to hang before you even get home (or right out of the box if you order online.)


I usually put this style of framed print on a different wall, but between you and me there was some space to fill on the main art wall and these fit perfectly. These are a couple of classic images that I haven’t had available for awhile, so it’s fun to see them again.

Here is the before photo. I posted it at the top of this post, but figured I’d put it here too just so you don’t have to scroll up and down the screen to compare the before and after photos.


There are only 7 new things on the wall, so it’s not a drastic difference, but it’s looking a little more full, which is good.

And that’s it for now. Day 5 of Blogtober is complete.

Thanks for reading!
– Jeff

New Snowflake Version

This is my latest in the ongoing “Some Bitch Stole My Lunch Money” series. I don’t normally get to art speaky…or maybe I do without realizing it. I try not to because it can be such a bore sometimes, but one thing I’ve learned over the years is that a lot of people enjoy hearing the backstory about how a piece is made. I really try to avoid the REAL art speaky bit of talking about the meaning of a painting and whatnot. That can get a bit lofty and as a creator I quite fancy the idea that the viewer has a responsibility to bring something to the table. The image should invoke some sort of emotion for the viewer and with that the viewer adds the meaning. And look, just like that, I got all art speaky on you without even realizing it. Ughh…somebody slap me! Let’s get back on track…

Ok, so this piece is very interesting to me. It’s impossible to see in a photo, especially a straight on photo and in person it’s even difficult to see unless you are really looking for it, but it’s there. Here’s a close up I’d like you to take a look at.

What I hope you can see in the above photo is the different layers and how some things are floating between layers of resin. I coat almost every single one of my paintings with a thick clear resin. Normally, it’s pretty straight forward. I paint on a wood panel and when I’m done I do the resin pour. With this one I painted the green background and poured the resin over it while the paint was still wet. Then I splattered some white paint on top of the wet resin. As you know, I love drips and splatters. Splatters usually end up looking like a bunch of random polka dots, but these splatters had this interesting reaction with the resin and sort of spread out and splintered giving them more of a snowflake look than a splatter, which I totally embraced. When that layer of resin dried I put the “Some Bitch” girl over the top and then poured another layer of resin over that. If you look close you can see a slight shadow under her as well as some of the snowflakes. And on closer inspection, which is a lot easier in person, you can see that some of the green swirls of paint are floating in the resin above the first layer of green background. Fun stuff. Yeah, I’m art nerding.

And that’s a wrap!

Now, since I have bills to pay, if you’d like to add the “Some Bitch Stole My Lunch Money” (snowflake version) to your collection that would be super awesome. She’s available right here.

Oh, and here’s some bonus photos of two new paintings I’m working on that were done using the same process of pouring resin over wet paint.

As always, thanks for looking!
– Jeff

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Need more of me in your life?
Follow on the IG: @jeffclaassen
Watch on the YT: youtube.com/jeffclaassen

I’m An Appropriation Artist Now

Yes, it’s true. Not really though. I could never give up “my” art to be a full fledged appropriation artist. I just don’t have it in me. Sort of like how I don’t think I could ever be a full on abstract artist. At least not at this moment in time. With that said, I decided to step out of my comfort zone and play around with the idea of making appropriation art and Jiminy Cricket’s head was just too perfect for the faces I like to paint.

For a long time he lived on my iPad. Just him with a solid white background. It didn’t seem fitting to throw him over the top of one of my typical layered and textured abstract backgrounds. Eventually, I started looking through my photos and came across this one I took in the subway and it seemed to work.

After Jiminy I started making a list of cartoons that I watched as a kid and scoured the internet looking for images that I thought one of my faces would work well with. For some crazy reason I thought this image of Fred Flintstone would work well.

It turned out way uglier than I had anticipated, but that made me laugh and what’s better than cracking up at your own jokes. Nothing! Like Jiminy, I needed a background and found this photo I took one early morning in front of Sunshine Donuts. It seemed to work too.

I watched A LOT of cartoons as a kid, so the list I created is quite long. I’m not sure if I’ll ever get around to making all of them, but it’s been a fun escape from what I normally do.

Hope you enjoyed them.
– Jeff

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Not bored yet? Want to hang out a little longer?
Check out my YouTube Channel.
Stalk me on Instagram.

Oh yeah, boring BONUS stuff for those of you that want to read about the process. So, I found an image of the character I wanted to appropriate online and saved it on my iPad. Then I used the Procreate app to make the artwork. Procreate is now my go-to art app. I use it more than any of the others. I also use the Apple Pencil and if you draw a lot on an iPad I highly recommend it. It actually has made making digital are a lot more fun for me and I’ve had a big problem with making digital art in the past. Ok, see you next time.

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