After the heatwave… – Nanda Raemansky

Symptoms of COVID19: When your country seems to turn into a policestate. Digital drawing 2020

Hello there, it was so warm that I had to take a short summerbreak, but now it’s a bit better here and I am ready to get back on track.

Did you see what’s happening in Belarus? Let’s hope for the best, let’s hope for freedom <3 Lets try to help a bit by posting related artwork with the hashtags #artistswithbelarus and @artistswithbelarus

Symptoms of COVID19: Borderline policies. Digital drawing 2020

During the Transpositions III exhibition, I had an virtual studio visit with Sophie Cloherty, but something went wrong with the connection and most of the data from the visit got lost. But she asked me an interesting question which might be interesting to you to. So I would like to take this opportunity to get back to this.

Charleroi (BE) – Viaduct Carsid. Digital drawing 2020

Sophie had asked me how I ended up making these digital drawings.

It all started with seeing David Hockneys Ipad drawings during his exhibition in Köln (DE) in 2012. He had made these short animations of the process and was exhibiting them on large screens. I was dazzeled by it. Luckily I had a friend with an Ipad who knew this technology and told me, he probably had used the Procreate app.

But an Ipad was much to expensive for my budget, so I bought a Polaroid with a smaller screen. Tablets were still a pretty new type of technology at that moment, so the cheaper ones didn’t work all that well yet and it wasn’t suitable for the purpose I had bought it for.

But Polariod is originally a brand for photography related products. So guess what it did do great and didn’t crash on? Digitally editing photographs… That’s when photography became an important facet of my creative process.

Eede(NL) – De vuilpanstraat. Digitally edited picture with the crappy Polaroid tablet. 2020

I can be really clumbsy at times and crashed my tablet many times because of it. Eight years later, it is miraculously still working, althought I have to use a mouse to opperate it 8) But it really took like a gazillion crashes, before the touchscreen function finally broke down. I thought that was pretty impressive to say the least 🙂

And still working 😀

By then (when the touchscreen function collapsed) I had graduated as an experimental painter and was following the specialisation grade. Here they gave extra classes to get familliar with other disciplines. One of those classes was Medialab/ Digital arts.

Charleroi (BE) – La Rive Gauche. Digital drawing 2020

Here we learned to make Ipad drawings, to film and edit the process and to a make short movie from it. Just like the ones David Hockney had made, but manually. Hockney had used an app with an intergrated screenrecorder that cuts all the menu-moments out for you. We used a beamer and a camcorder to record it and did the editing ourselfs.

From Gdanks to Gdynia (PL). Short animation the digital drawing process, 2016

Because of this I also learned a lot about video editing. We also had some extra lessons on greensceen and audio, which gave me a lot of new tools to create. It even gave me a new dimension: Time.

Ofcourse by now the greenscreen function has become somewhat obsolete with the possibility to use augmented reality, but it does not work in the same way and thus you can still do different things with both techniques.

Voetzoeker 2016. Here thanks to greenscreen technology I ‘enterted’ my own digital drawing.

Offcourse with new disciplines comes the need to use them. So last year I finally bought myself a secondhand Ipad. One with a big screen. What I didn’t know was that Procreate was the only app with the screenrecorder function before IOS 11 was introduced. My Ipad is to old for IOS 11 and Procreate doesn’t share the old version with new customers when they have an older tablet. So I don’t have the screenrecorder function, but I think my drawings became actually better because of it. Now its not so much about the animation as it is about the drawing itself.

Charleroi (BE) – Kubus. Digital drawing 2020

If you would like to try it yourself, I would recommed to not take the cheapest tablet. Better a secondhand of an higher quality, then a cheaper new one which might falter. If you prefer an Ipad, try to make sure it’s an edition from 2017 or later, to be able to use the screenrecorder function. I use the app Sketches to draw and I sometimes also use the photo editing app Snapseed to edit the drawing. This is a great app for editing your photographs and they are both free. Procreate is not free, but with the newer IOS devices Sketches also provides the screenrecorder function and this one is for free. You can also easily do this with an Android device as long as the core is powerfull enough to not start faltering. And obviously it is also easier when you have a larger screen for drawing.

You can experiment a bit with the way you use certain materials like the color bucket. If you use other materials first, that can give a pretty trippy effect. The feather can also help make colors blend and blur a bit. And there is also a difference between drawing a line or just tapping the screen when you use the watercolor brush. Check it out, you might like it. And it sure is handy, when your want make a drawing in situ and you only have to take your tablet with you to have a great variety of tools at hand.

Raemansky 2020 ©

  1. Avatar photo
    Masha Gudyma

    Hello Nanda. To begin with, thank you for reccomendations on choosing a tablet, I think for many beggining digital artists this is REALLY important advice;)
    Now about your creative works. For almost half a year I have been looking at them, but it was hard ro match the right words. You`ve created such an atmospere on them that touched me deeply. Together sharp quick strockes and color pallete create a sense of tension in space (maybe even danger). Did I get the mood right?
    And the second question. Before start working you already have a ripe idea (so you choose the certain tools to embody the intention)? Or do you more often expetiment with tools and the result is kind of surprise for you too? (like splashing out subconscious feelings in art).
    In any case THANK U for sharing your art with us, we will continue follow your work))

  2. raemansky

    Hello Masha,

    Thank you very much for your kind and well thought comment 🙂

    If narrowed down to a sensation, danger is definetely a part of it. The danger to loose something valuable, the danger of getting entrapped, the danger of getting lost in all this… Those are certainly a few of the emotions I sensed strongly during this pandemic and the lockdown situation. Danger has been a red thread through out my work. Ofcourse knowing that my work gets inspired by freedom, one can ask if maybe that also means that freedom is somehow intertwined with danger to me. It does. Whether by provoking it somehow or because of simply being under threat, with the consumation of freedom comes a certain tension, that might very well escalate into a dangerous situation. And as you probably know it often does. Recent examples are for instance are the terrorist attacks in France provoked by the the fifth memorial of Charlie Hebdo and the situation in Bellarus.

    Usually when I start with a project, I have something of an idea. Mostly I get atrackted by a certain quality of a place and then I go there to make pictures and look deeper into it. But that’s just at the beginning of the process. After that I just start mixing and reproducing and at that point it’s totally open to coincidences and experiments. I even hope to provoke them. Often my best works are those that are crooked and messy, but I always start a work with the intension of a certain atmosphere in mind.

  3. Avatar photo
    Crystal Marshall

    I really like the digital works. The vibrant color schemes and the fluidity of the drawings. Digital art can be really liberating medium to work with. I definitely sense that kind of energy in the work. Although the ideas are centered on the pandemic I find them to be very aesthetically pleasing to look at and reminds me of the summer time and warmth.

    1. raemansky

      Thank you Crystal 🙂

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