#LessIsMore

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[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]Last month we’ve been posting square images all over our social networks with the words “Less IS more”. So what’s this all about?

Well, in short it is my attempt at marketing the upcoming website update that will change quite a few things for ArtSocket (more on that in the next post). The long story is behind the meaning of these words.

For me “less is more” is an approach. I am the kind of a guy who’s prepared to pay more for a bike with less speeds. Having extra whistles and bells has never impressed me; IMO they only distract from the main function of whatever the object is. In some ways this goes true for my daily life as well. Should I fill my calendar with a hundred little things and get overwhelmed? Or should I try to do less, with more breaks and really pay attention to the quality of my work? Perhaps the latter is better.

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Design’s integral role in “Art as Experience”

imageBeauty is out there. It takes an artist to see it and find a way to show it to the world. Image source

[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]In 1934 paper on aesthetics “Art as Experience”, John Dewy offers to look at art as a relationship system. A bond between the audience and the expressive object - and its effect on the lives of the each. Leo Tolstoy in his essay “What is art?” (translated excerpts here) referred to it as “activity”, “expression” and “feeling”.

ArtSocket’s Olga Tcherbadji describes being an artist as a wonderer in a garden looking for a divine fruit. Only a true creator can see it, get it, peel it and present it. Artist is a medium between the ether of creativity that floats around us and the material world that we live in. Victor Wooten describes this concept in his book “The Music Lesson”: Nobody really owns music. Some of us can hear it and play it out, but it comes from out there.

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Tips for sustainable creative living

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[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]Last year I started including “Eco Tips” into every email newsletter that I sent. This is the list of each and every one of those practices that I hope will help us live a more responsible lifestyle as artists, art lovers or whoever. It will be updated as new emails go out every month or so.

Before I go on about listing all the environmentally-friendly little things that we could do I’d like to address the most important one first. We need to try and consume less. During my travels across Asia I have discovered that there are so many things that we end up owning that we really don’t need. I quit my job, gave up my apartment and sold most of the stuff that I have ever owned. Everything that was left ended up in a 30L backpack. And I was comfortable - laptop, iPhone, even my own pillow and good set of clothes. Not to say that you should do the same, but it’s something to think about.

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Art around the world: Art Zone 798 in Beijing

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[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]I travel a lot. It’s been over a year since the final departure from Toronto. By now I have visited almost all major destinations in Asia. Some are amazing, others are meh. 798 Art Zone is definitely the former.

798 Art Zone (Chinese: 798艺术区; pinyin: 798 Yìshùqū), or Dashanzi Art District [source] is an immense neighbourhood on the outskirts of Beijing City. Its size and the diversity and quality of the works exhibited is phenomenal. Needless to say that my visit turned out to be a mind-bending experience.

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Interview with Ian Chow, world traveller

imageAn image Ian took at the India/Nepal border (more on his Google+ page).

[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]Art is a journey. Same-old is the opposite of creativity. Every single artist, musician and photographer that I know longs to discover something new - and what is a better way to do that than to go somewhere far far away?

Meet Ian Chow, my friend and someone I look up to when it comes to actually going to places most people only dream about. He is here to share his wisdom and experiences about being far far away from home.

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Interview with Ron Chiu, graphic artist

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[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]This week I had a chance to ask my friend Ron, graphic artist, designer and overall really nice guy a few questions about his new creative project.

Every (work) day, since February 3rd Ron drew a fictional character portrait on an empty container from his daily caffeine fix. He posts the results of on his Instagram account, Twitter and, if you know him personally - Facebook. By now I fully expect it, it is my reminder that I need to get my coffee too and start doing something with my life. And as I do just that I reminisce about the old friends from sci-fi and comics that I worshiped as a kid, staring at me from the empty paper cup half way across the world.

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Inspiration through foreign literature: “Tale of Medvediha”

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[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]This is perhaps the first and only English translation of Alexander Pushkin's unfinished poem. Just like travel, dipping the toes into foreign art is enlightening. Being a Russian-born who still remembers how to read and write I thought I'd give this beautiful poem a chance.

Be warned: a lot of the grammar rules have been subverted to preserve the flow of the original piece. I have never done this before so do let me know if there is something that needs fixing.

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When does it make sense to buy art online?

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[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]Does it even make sense to shop for something that would hang on your wall and become your daily inspiration for years on a tiny computer monitor or a tablet? The problem with buying anything online is that there is always a good chance that things will not look exactly as they were pictured on the website. And of course there are trust issues since you don’t ever get to see, touch and feel the product for weeks after paying for it. What if they rip us off?

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A few eco-friendly printing practices

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[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]During the past twenty years I have seen a huge influx of “green" products and practices - which is really good, considering the state of our environment. And as a fan of keeping our planet livable, I pay particular attention to this trend. Unfortunately, it takes work to figure out whether something is “eco-good” or “eco-bad”. Nothing is in black and white, despite what some labels might tell you.

In this article I will be talking about the basics of sustainability when it comes to print products - whether its art, photography, gicleeé or whatever.

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Printing medium options for fine-art and photography

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[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]Printing has come a long way since 1041. Nowadays we can order our images to be printed on pretty much whatever we want: from TP to 7-storey building walls. We can even 3D print that we can print our print on - but who would want that?

In this article I will be going over some standard (quality) options. No metal prints, no vinyl stickers, no wood burning - just digital images on paper or canvas - to be specific.

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Scanning film negatives with pro quality results

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[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]Film photography (some call it Lomography) never died. Even if digital cameras took over the world with their fancy megapixels and the convenience of not having to buy film and then later process it. Even now it seems that we still want our pictures on film. Some of us show it through sticking with actual film cameras, others use Instagram to show our love for warm colours, unexpected imperfections - even the grain.

In this article I will guide you through the scanning process that I used for the film photography collections on ArtSocket.

The problem with the most common and cheap ways that people use these days to transfer negatives onto their computers is quality. Even the cheapest Lomo camera has 4-16 megapixels to every shot and tons of character, colours and tiny details. All of that disappears if you use methods like this.

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2013: A year in review

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[by]Dmitri Tcherbadji[/by]Although me and you can have an uneventful year, something significant always happens around the world. In this post I will pick a few of my favorite happenings from 2013. To make things interesting, I will be adding the events related me personally and ArtSocket next to the big world-wide ones. The focus will be art, technology and travel. OK, here we go:

  • Elon Musk wows the world with his electric cars. What’s more important, besides the quality and profitability of those products, is what it means for our world’s future. It’s no secret that air pollution will make our lives continuously more difficult - and this is our first major step towards fixing it. At ArtSocket: we have switched our printing and shipping practices to deliver more environmentally-friendly art. Non-toxic inks and cotton paper means less harmful chemicals and no trees harmed in the process.

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