Art in Life – Colors, Meanings, and Culture

by Kim Calhoun on April 12, 2010

I consider myself to be an artist. Whether its musical, oil painting, rubber stamping, jewelry making, polymer clay beads or even on the computer, I consider it my art. Others may not agree. Am I the best artist that ever lived. Certainly not. :) What do you think art is? Where do you get your inspirations from?

This is my newest digital art piece, Mitzi’s Girl.

Mitzi's Girl - Copyright 2010 Kim Calhoun
Mitzi’s Girl – Copyright 2010 Kim Calhoun

Where I get inspiration

The inspiration for this artwork came from Mitzi herself. Mitzi is a beautiful lady. Her signature color is orange. Her skin is the color of mocha. And she has a heart of pure gold. She is brave and valiant and someone I admire for her strength.

The Color Orange

It’s no wonder that orange is Mitzi’s favorite color. It has the assertiveness of red with the cheeriness of yellow mixed in. I can think of nothing that describes her more. Mitzi is an avid collector of cookbooks and recipes. It is said that the color orange stimulates appetite. It is a warm color but it is also bright and inviting. This fits Mitzi’s personality completely.

Art and the African American Culture

I have had a love affair with African American art for a number of years. Lines are simple, but colors are complex. This abstract portrait of my friend Mitzi, is the 2nd in a series of digital art in the style of African American painters. To grow a love for art in general, I think you must try to understand art in all its forms, even if you don’t care for the look and wouldn’t put it up in your house.

Take Mitzi’s Girl. What do the colors and parts mean? The red purse is a symbol of assertiveness. The hat is a sign of her belief in God. If you have ever been to a black church you will see the women with the most colorful and beautiful hats. They dress for God. The brown blocks are buildings, but they are more than that. They represent the choices that one can make in life. You can choose many doors but how do you know you’ve picked the right one? That’s for the viewer to answer.

Why the Toni Morrison quote? It is for Mitzi to always remember that she is free. Free because she believes in God. Free because she is an American. Sometimes to take up that banner of freedom can be hard, that’s why I gave her the red purse of assertiveness. So that she may always remember to stand up and bask in freedom. With freedom and God’s love anything is possible.

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