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  1. #1
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    Illustrators doing gallery work

    Hello everybody

    I was just thinking about what would happen if an illustrator (either with an illustrator career or a BFA majoring in illustration) decided to do gallery work, like original paintings, or prints, etc. I remember that during my last year in fine arts school I heard from a lot of classmates and teachers that illustrators were very despised by fine artists (maybe it was just my school) and but some friends of mine that were studying in fine arts in other schools recieved bad marks and were even "scolded" them for doing "illustrative" work because it was not "art". So, the question is, are illustrators really "allowed" to do gallery work or not? I know I might sound stupid and I wan't to make clear that I personally think THEY DO , but there are SO MUCH snob people (I'm not saying everybody) in charge of this "world" (critics, art journalists, gallery owners, ec.) at least where I live that think that illustration is like a lower-level kind of art, if it can be even called so... this is not going to prevent me from trying in the future, but I just want to talk a bit about it..

    So, what do you think? had any experiences related to this?


    PS: I'm now thinking that this thread would be better in another sub-forum, but I'm not enterely sure... any suggestion?

    Last edited by CaNiBaLe; September 26th, 2008 at 02:52 PM. Reason: me are bad english! me correct bad grammar errorz!
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  3. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by lady_kito View Post
    So, the question is, are illustrators really "allowed" to do gallery work or not? I know I might sound stupid and I wan't to make clear that I personally think THEY DO , but there are SO MUCH snob people
    *sigh* Do what you want to do, don't bother with the ignorance of some of those around you. Illustrators cross over into other fields all the time.

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  4. #3
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    There are a HUGE number of illustrators who cross freely back and forth, or who have transitioned over completely to gallery work. I don't have time now, but I may be able to put together a partial list if nobody else steps up.


    Tristan Elwell
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  5. #4
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    I do both. I have a number of friends who do both.

    marks in school don't really matter. The opinions of friends in school with no actual experience don't really matter. The opinions of instructors in school who may or may not have any idea what's been going on in the art world in the past 20 years don't really matter. My opinion doesn't really matter either.

    The only people who have opinions here that might matter are the people giving you shows and buying your work. Even then, their opinions matter very little when you come right down to it, because you need to keep yourself happy first and foremost.

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  7. #5
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    Yeah, thanks, I agree with you all, I think I just had a bad impression based on what I heard from some people. This seems to be out of question for you heh, but in my place it's actually a kind of debate going on right now. But I think I'll just stick to what I believe and want, people can be really stupid sometimes and I think I have to learn not to listen to them so easily.

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  8. #6
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    I've heard being an illustrator described as "selling your soul" (though I'd be willing to say it's more like selling your work and attaching your soul to that work).

    I'd imagine galleries to be a great way to prove to those snobs that you do indeed have a soul. After all, if it's in a frame, who can say it's not fine art?

    As for things being "too illustrative", why not make the argument that abstract art is "too illustrative" of abstract things? Or that a classical figure painting is "too illustrative" of a nude? Where is the line between a representation of an object and that of a story?

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  9. #7
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    Bullshit. There is a huge number of illustrators who are crossing over into fine art. And it's been an established trend for fine artists to cross over into illustration. It's usually fuddy duddy instructors who haven't stepped out of their fume filled "studios" who say things like that.
    Maybe they're just bitter that people might want to look at and buy illustration more nowadays than their insights into the world.

    I guess I'll start the list,

    Martin Wittfooth

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  11. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zirngibism View Post
    I've heard being an illustrator described as "selling your soul" (though I'd be willing to say it's more like selling your work and attaching your soul to that work).
    Wait a second, I thought Fine Arts people also sold their artwork/soul to anyone willing to pay?

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  12. #9
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    james jean just turned a fine artist..hes an illustrator no more
    Kent williams
    jason shawn alexander
    just a few examples....

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  14. #10
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    james jean just turned a fine artist..hes an illustrator no more
    Kent williams
    jason shawn alexander
    just a few examples....
    Michael Whelan
    Phil Hale
    Jeff Jones
    James Bama
    Bob McGinnis
    Burt Silverman
    Eyvind Earl...

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  16. #11
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    All artists are illustrators, some just don't realise it.

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  17. #12
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    james jean just turned a fine artist..hes an illustrator no more
    Kent williams
    jason shawn alexander
    just a few examples....
    Michael Whelan
    Phil Hale
    Jeff Jones
    James Bama
    Bob McGinnis
    Burt Silverman
    Eyvind Earl...
    Marshall Arisman
    Rafal Olbinski
    Lori Early
    Shawn Barber
    Daniel Adel
    Mark Ryden
    Steve Assael (went by Steve Assel as an illustrator)
    Malcolm Liepke
    Mark English
    Andy Warhol
    Lionel Feininger
    Joe Sorren
    Gary Taxali
    Morgan Weistling
    etc.

    That should keep you busy googling for a while.


    Tristan Elwell
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  19. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbclemons View Post
    All artists are illustrators, some just don't realise it.
    Most artists couldn't hack it as illustrators.


    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

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