December Art Dare extended through January!


img_7472Submission for this month’s Art Dare from Sarah from @sketchofthedays.

Since many people are on vacation in the last half of December, we’ve decided to extend our December Art Dare through January 31!  Get details below on the Art Dare. 

“My 2016”
Create an artwork about what 2016 was for you, in any 2D media.
Your piece can be about a subject that didn’t directly happen to you, or it can be about a personal experience.

Below are topics if you want a place to start:
a change  •  a new person  • a new place  •  a success  •  an event  •  a death  •  a celebration  •  a failure  •  use the text “2016” in your image


An #artprofwip submission for this month’s Art Dare by @emotional.cabbage.

To Submit
Post your artwork on Instagram, tag us  w/ #artprofdare.
Or, post your artwork on our Facebook page.

Use #artprofwip, and Prof Clara Lieu might drop by and give feedback on your in progress artwork. We feature submissions on our Instagram and Facebook page during the month!

Submissions close Tues., Jan. 31 @ 11:59pm EST
Questions?  Comment below or Email us.



Submission for this month’s Art Dare from Owen from @sketchofthedays.  He writes: “With this sketch I hope to elaborate on my change as a person throughout the year of 2016. I feel this year, I’ve been closer to my true self then I’ve ever been. This is mainly due to the pre-college program I attended over the summer. I’m currently figuring out ways to brain storm this transformation.”

ART PROF is a free, online educational platform for visual arts which provides equal access to art education for people of all ages and means.

Be notified of our early 2017 site launch by subscribing to our email list.


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Crit Quickies vs. Audio Critique Packs

by @ter_ars_zawitkowska_

I’ve been very excited about the way that Crit Quickies has picked up over the past few days! I think it’s wonderful that submissions are coming in from artists of all ages, backgrounds, locations, and styles.  That’s one aspect of being an artist that I think is very unique to our field:  your background, age, body type, etc. doesn’t dictate whether you can be an artist.  Compared to other fields like athletics, or acting, where if you are just 2″ too short, or if you don’t have the “right look” for the movie role you’re auditioning for, you can always make art no matter what.

Eloise_Shelton_Mayo    Heidi Neff, acrylic painting "Untitled (Resistence)"    Jeff Wrench, Acrylic Painting

If you enjoy our Crit Quickies, check out our Audio Critique Packs.  (Click on the three images above to hear each artwork’s Audio Critique Pack.) We gave away 4 free Audio Critique Packs over the past month, so each winner got a 2-6 minute critique from 4 different professional artists each.  While the Crit Quickies are fun, as you can imagine, there’s only so much you can squeeze into 1 minute of speaking!  The Audio Critique Packs let us go into much greater depth and detail in the critique, so check them out. Our giveaways are over, but you’ll see on June 14 that there will be further opportunities to get an Audio Critique Pack in the future.

Making art doesn’t have to be a gigantic expensive production either.  The artistic process can be as humble as doing a pencil sketch for 10 minutes a day in a small sketchbook-you don’t have to construct a 20′ high bronze public art sculpture to be an artist. Keep those submissions coming, and keep your eyes peeled on my sites on June 14 for our huge announcement-I promise you won’t be disappointed.

by @collins_cameron

by @melissaeuler


ART PROF is a free, online educational platform for visual arts for people of all ages and means. features video courses, art critiques, an encyclopedia of art supplies, and more.

FB    Youtube    Pinterest     Instagram    Twitter    email    etsy

Prof Lieu offers video critiques on portfolios for students applying to art school and working artists. More info.

Every month, we assign a topic for you to respond to with an artwork. We give out prizes in several categories!  More info.

ASK THE ART PROF was a written column in the Huffington Post from about art related topics. Visit our Pro Development page.

Thursday Spotlight: Prilla Smith Brackett

Tell us about your background.

I was born in New Orleans, and grew up in West Hartford, CT. My background is in the social sciences – a BA in Psychology and Sociology from Sarah Lawrence College and an MA in Sociology from UC Berkeley. After quitting a social service job, by chance I tried throwing a pot. I fell in love with clay, took a few classes, and for 6 -7 years worked as a studio potter. I also learned to draw from Eleanor Dickinson in San Francisco. A job change for my husband took us to Lincoln, NE, where I went back to school in 2-D. At UN-Lincoln, after getting undergrad art credits out of the way, I got a MFA in drawing and painting. My family moved back east to Cambridge & Boston MA where I’ve painted and exhibited for many years. In 2003 I started learning how to do monoprints, and now my studio practice includes both monoprints, drawing, and mixed media painting.

Name some people, artists, artistic genres, etc. that have been influential in your work.

In San Francisco Eleanor Dickinson was a role model for me: She was a successful artist, who was also married with children, and a feminist. My graduate school work was influenced by the pattern painters of the 1970’s and 80’s, Vuillard, and Bonnard. I’ve studied the work of Cezanne, the Canadian painter Emily Carr, Arthur Dove, and Joan Mitchell, among others.

Where and how do you get your ideas?

For many years I’ve been interested in landscape, and would get ideas when traveling to landscapes new to me. Then I became interested in expressing ideas through landscape. In one large project I wanted to suggest the negative impact of humans on the landscape. Liking the romantic notion of northern forests, I did research on old growth forests, and decided to explore the forests’ relationship with city trees. The images came from photos I took hiking to pockets of old growth forests in northern New England, and from trees in my city. I figured out formal ways to suggest threat and commonality. For the last several years I’ve been working with the juxtaposition of the natural and the domestic, in particular these same old growth forests and old fashioned furniture from a house that had been in my family for 90 years. I enjoy the problem solving involved with both developing an idea, and developing an individual painting or print.

What materials do you work with? Describe your technical processes.

In mixed media paintings I work on panels. The most recent paintings have begun with acrylic underpainting and printing to build up a rich visual texture. I’ve used black Cretacolor leads and acrylic inks to draw, build up textural areas, establish the image, followed by thin layers of oil glazes, and areas of oil paint. My monoprints of the last year have started with a texture woodblock which I print twice, with 2 different colors, followed by the woodblock with the forest image. I use furniture stencils, or sometimes a semi-transparent chine collé to add a furniture image. And I also print patterns of very small furniture line drawings, or a larger furniture drawing, using a polyester lithographic plate. I like to use these various building blocks again and again, in different combinations, with different color choices.

What do you find to be the most challenging part of being creative? What is the best part of being creative?

The most challenging part of being creative is coming up with new ideas. Luckily, new ideas often come from working, from doing the work. The best part about being creative is that you get to figure out what you want to do! You have the freedom to invent for yourself, from yourself. No one else is telling you what to do.

What advice would you give to someone seeking advice about being an artist?

Be very sure you want to be an artist. It’s hard to make a living and difficult to juggle family. Look at a lot of art, read widely, travel as much as you can. It’s important to have a broad knowledge of history and culture. Develop a good group of artist peers for mutual support, sharing of ideas, help with networking. Develop a strong work ethic.

Prilla’s website
Prilla’s Facebook page

Want to be featured on Thursday Spotlight?  Get information on how to submit your work here.

Wellspring #7, copyright 2012, woodcut, pronto plate on Kizuki Kozo paper, 22″ h x 20″ w