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BookSmithStudio.com | Nikki Smith Book & Visual Artist

Handmade books and various art explorations

Archive for March, 2012

Selective Color Competition Results

March 30th, 2012 by Nikki Smith

I recently hosted a competition on Selective Color Photos.  There were some amazing entries and very talented photographers!  Votes were open to the public.  Below are the contest winners, honorable mentions and host’s choice awards:

Photography Prints
1st place – Red Rollers by Shane Bechler

Photography Prints2nd place – Puma by Miso Jovicic

Art Prints
3rd place – Giant Fern in the Stairs by Daniel Furon

Honorable Mentions:

Photography Prints4th place – Jill by Jerry Cordeiro

Orange Dinghy by Dale Ford5th place – Orange Dinghy by Dale Ford


Host’s Choice Awards:

Behind Blue Eyes by Mo T
Hard Luck by Elizabeth Hart
Art PrintsPhotography Prints
Photography Prints
Sell Art Online
Photography Prints

These are just a sampling of some of the amazing images in the contest.  You can see the top finishers here and all of the entries here.  Congratulations everyone!

Gothic Romance – The Darkness and the Light

March 11th, 2012 by Nikki Smith

In my artwork, I’m often torn.  I reach the point where I need to make a decision, a turning point that will take the piece in a new direction.  I see so many possibilities and I cannot choose.  So I stop, hoping that in the morning one will call me more than the other.  This is the major cause of my large collection of UFO’s (unfinished objects), because the morning light rarely brings clarity to my befuddlement.  A day turns into weeks, then months.

Not this time!  The advantage of digital artwork is that you can make BOTH choices (unlike in the real world) and take one piece of artwork in multiple directions.  Take this piece for example:

“Moonlight calls me into the night.
The darkness becons, the moon so bright.
Listening close, I almost hear her voice,
Calling me, follow me…”
~Nikki Smith

This piece speaks to me of gothic romance, the mysteries of sights unseen, and of the moon’s calming presence in the darkest night.

But I also loved the sunlit forest:

“The forest beckons me.  I glance back, knowing my path will take me far from here.  Will I return someday?  Perhaps.  But for now, the forest beckons and I must answer her call…”

This piece, ‘The Forest Beckons,’ is a companion to ‘Moonlight Calls Me’ – the daylight version.  I love working a piece in many ways, and I haven’t decided which version I like best.  The sun or the moon?  Either way, the journey begins with a first step.  I’m glad I was able to take both paths through the forest today…

Looking back, I’ve noticed that this isn’t the first time I’ve reworked my art into multiple and varied visions of the same piece.  In fact, I was surprised at how often this turns up in my artwork.  How about you?  Do you create multiple variations of an art piece?  Or do you get grounded when faced with too many choices?  I’d love to hear your thoughts…

Stock Credits:
Model : Janna Prosvirina – kuoma.deviantart.com
Background: destroyingangels.deviantart.com
Texture: greyghost-stock.deviantart.com
Brushes: alicefaux.deviantart.com , trisste-brushes.deviantart.com

Stardust Portraits

March 3rd, 2012 by Nikki Smith

Inspired by Carl Sagan’s quote, “We are all made of stardust,” and by the beautiful work of photographer Marissa Katarina Bergmann, I decided to try my hand at creating a “stardust portrait.”  The concept for this style of portrait is to emphasize the natural beauty of freckled skin and its similarities to a field of stars.  After all, we truly are all born of stardust.

Star Freckles by Nikki Smith of BookSmithStudio.com

This lovely young lady has a dusting of freckled stars across her skin, complimenting the starry sky beyond her shoulder.  Inspired by Carl Sagan’s quote, “We are all made of stardust,” I created a portrait seamlessly blending the stellar beauty of a freckle-faced girl with the infinite beauty of a field of stars.

A big thank-you to Tracie T (Tracie76Stock) for providing the beautiful source photograph of her daughter, as well as NASA for the Summer Triangle star field, which formed the basis for this photo manipulation fine art portrait.

I am looking forward to making more of these stardust portraits in the future!