Category Archives: Uncategorized

Studio Days

I have spent the majority of my life in an art studio of one description or another. Lately I’ve entered the music studio stage of my life, and it welcomed me with open arms, like I was coming home. One of my mentors calls it the peace that surpasses understanding, and I must say, doors have been opening for me that I never expected.

Recently I was asked by a buddy, Jim, to sing backups on his album. I was so honored. We had met over a year ago at one of my regular events and regularly admire each other’s work, so of course I agreed.

I was a little nervous before going, having only recorded in my own home recording booth thus far – but it was a very positive experience. The sound engineer Brian was very welcoming and down to earth. I loved watching the workflow in general; as I observed, I had good instincts and practices in my own recording and editing, and even my choice in equipment.

When it was my turn in the booth, I took to the environment like a duck to water. I was decisive as to whether it was a good or bad take or if a certain phrase needed tweaking. As at home, I knew listening through the headphones gave me much more detailed sound so I could really hear and give feedback to both songwriter Jim and engineer Brian, to cooperatively refine the tracks. I easily articulated what needed doing; asked what they thought; we found solutions together.

As a natural harmonizer, I hear harmonies all over the instrumentation in a piece. I know I have choices and I know I don’t have to stick to one part; I can go between parts or sing in unison or drop out in different areas of a song to leave the spotlight on the main vocals, in order to interpret the intensity of the lyrics in each part or to help the song to build and to resolve. As I listened to Jim’s songs, I honed in on the story being told and made some suggestions, as he humbly gave me a wide latitude of artistic license. He heard many and we discussed options, and he liked my instincts. On one song, I asked, “Can you give me a separate track in addition to the one I just did, so I can experiment? Do we have time?” I got their respective blessings and did what I was thinking of, not even being able to hear my other harmony track. When Brian played back all the tracks together, we learned that I harmonized in perfect time and relationship to my other harmony. They were both reacting, “How did you do that?” and I said, “I can still hear the other one in my head; I just thought this area might like a little more roundness for emphasis.” They thought it was genius concept and execution (thanks to already having familiarized myself with the songs ahead of time, I even laid down a couple tracks in a single take with almost no editing needed) – and even though it was unplanned, it was a keeper for the song, and we did the same sort of thing on the next song because he was so happy with the results. Jim’s praises and trusting my instincts were very validating!

After the last session, I stuck around briefly, talking recording process and equipment with Brian, who was very gracious and generous with his knowledge and his feedback with where I had already gotten on my own. He was so encouraging and it inspired me, because he has a degree in this field and many years of experience. I couldn’t wait to get back to recording my own work at home, armed with bolstered confidence.

I have to say that in the information age, almost any knowledge you want is available if you are willing to search for it, and it’s helped me to do everything from learning web design to repairing several engine issues in my truck to learning languages, and now…sound engineering and recording, as well as music business. But machines and books can never replace that human experience and exchange of ideas; the open, spontaneous, sharing communications of humans are key for all growth and creation. One doesn’t create in a bubble; we have to get it out there! And I will, but I’m taking the necessary time and effort in order to do it right.

I have the blessing of many wonderful musicians in my life, a driving passion and hungry mind that God gave me, and more than one family and growing number of fans who cheer me on. May you each find your niche and support system as well.

– Eilee

© 2019-present L. Eilee S. George, All Rights Reserved.

And We’re Live….

Well, it has been a fantastic adventure designing this new site, just as it was to have done the old one. I must say I have gotten no less than stellar customer service from my hosting provider; I could not have pulled this site off as fast as I did (well less than a week with lots of long breaks) without the assistance of many of their dedicated employees, who never once made me feel like I asked a “stupid” question (although I’m quite sure I did). Thank you GoDaddy! (Disclaimer: I get no compensation for saying this; I didn’t even tell them I was going to say this; it’s just an honest opinion. I just happen to believe in giving kudos in a world where too many folks only complain, that’s all.)

I had studied xhtml and CSS somewhat myself, but knowing code is a little different than knowing how it all works and goes live – it’s probably really easy for some, but when you’re unfamiliar with it, it’s all very mysterious. Really I just needed a little kick into foreign territory and I adapted quickly after all my fear and whining subsided. It’s good to know that both hemispheres of my brain are still working.

My “old” site (I had designed it a long time ago but only went live with it earlier this year) was designed in the now-defunct FrontPage. Had I known it would be a pain to edit and maintain, I might have used something else to begin with – but it was a good first web-building experience nonetheless. It was sort of like coursework for me…since I never took a single class in this stuff – just bought a giant book on codes and dove in. Now I’ve learned so much more about WordPress.

Even back then, I thought that I might be able to design sites for others…now that I’m working in WordPress, I know I can. I can keep it simple, and can maintain it for clients as well, if they get (or tell me) the content and images that they want on it. I’m a photographer and typographer, and I can do a wide variety of computer graphics and generated every background, animated GIF, and other type of image on both of the “eilee” sites from scratch. I’m good at organizing information and writing intelligent, articulate and grammatically competent copy. I am learning more about SEO every week, and I’m working on additional site aspects for the future.

I already have three other sites lined up to build after the festival (see previous post). Not bad.

 

 

 

 

All content on this site © 2013-2018/present L. Eilee S. George; all rights reserved.

 

Art Festival News

I recently joined the legions of artists who show at art festivals. I had put it off because of the up-front expense involved, but was encouraged by artist friends that it would be fun and also a great way to meet a lot of great people, and to get some exposure and broaden my horizons. They were right on all accounts.

My next show is right here in town! I will be showing at the Downtown Denver Arts Festival on Memorial Day Weekend: May 24, 25, and 26 (Friday – Sunday) at the Denver Performing Arts Complex. Some 160 artists will be showing from 4-8pm on Friday, 11-8pm Saturday, and 11-5pm Sunday.

You can see information on the festival at:

http://www.downtowndenverartsfestival.com

My work specifically is represented under 2013 Artists / 2D under “L. Eilee George”, and on the YouTube Video at the top of the same page at about 1:21 – the sample work is entitled “Catreedral”. After decades of painting, I’ve only very recently started to actually market my work. This is exciting!

I have viewed the other participants’ work, and I must say I am in very talented company. There is original art in all sizes and types for every budget, and a great bunch of people in a beautiful venue. If you’re in the area, please come join us – and enjoy the lovely spring weather, the art, the community, and the other great events going on downtown this weekend!

See you there!

Downtown Denver Arts Festival

15th Annual Downtown Denver Arts Festival

 

 

 

 

All content on this site © 2013-2018/present L. Eilee S. George; all rights reserved.

 

Introduction to the Elements & Principles of Design

Hi there – I’m Eilee George, and this is the first in a sub-series of lessons in my Art Blog, on the Elements and Principles of Design. This short lesson is an introduction and brief overview. Once lessons begin in earnest, I will focus first on the Elements.

WebBackground03sThere is a language in art; it is technical and subjective at the same time, as is the nature of art itself. In fact, there are many texts and resources that can’t even agree on a consistent list of exactly what all of the Elements and Principles of Design are – although there are many similarities, there is fluctuation, depending on which source is consulted. I will try to encompass all of the classic elements and principles in my upcoming articles, focusing on them in more detail.

Elements of Design are basically the visual tools that we use to create a composition. These can include line, shape, form, hue, value, intensity, texture or pattern, space, proportion, and scale. You can create a piece using nothing but line, or with shapes. If you modulate the shapes to make them appear three-dimensional, you are in effect creating form, and you are probably incorporating different values to achieve the illusion of light and dark that describes that form, be it smoothly or via texture. You can create textures with lines and/or shapes. If your piece is in color, you’re using hue, and can use different intensities of the hues there to render things accurately, or to create mood or even to create a sense of space, which can also be achieved through the placement and scale of your shapes.

As you can see, you can use these tools in a lot of combinations, and not just in those I mentioned above. How you use them is where the Principles of Design come in. These are more conceptual tools you use to organize and manipulate the Elements. The Principles include balance, emphasis, dominance, unity, harmony, variety, contrast, rhythm, repetition, pattern, and movement. As you can already see, there is a little overlap between some of these terms, and they can be used in different combinations, too. It can be very powerful to plan a work around even one or two of these principles; it gives the work a razor focus, an edge, and a personality that stands out to the eye.

I will present lessons on most of these elements and principles, combining some that are closely related. I strongly believe these to be essential, useful learning for anyone who wants to become a better artist. Art isn’t a free-for-all; it has a structure, and one must learn the rules before one can break them with any success. I understand that the subject matter may at first sound a little dry for an eager beginner, but these quick exercises can awaken you not only to the possibilities in your own art, but to seeing their existence and use in the world around you – a truly global language.

This was Lesson #1 on the Elements and Principles of Design. Here are links to the next few lessons, in order since I sometimes refer to and build upon previous lessons:

#2 – LINE: The Most Basic Element

#3 – Elements of Design: SHAPE in Simple SPACE

#4 – Elements of Design: FORM, TEXTURE and PATTERN

#5 – Elements of Design: HUE, VALUE and INTENSITY

Or, to see all of them en masse (note they are in reverse chronological order, so read the bottom one first, etc.), try the category Elements and Principles of Design (or use these links here in order)

For a wider choice of even more lessons and topics, visit the Blog Intro.

Be sure to check back occasionally for more lessons on Elements and Principles of Design & more.

If you have any questions or need clarification concerning any of these design concepts, do feel free to contact me using the Contact Form. Be sure to put the words “Lesson Question” in the Subject line (but the quotation marks aren’t necessary). I run several sites as well as my fine arts production projects, and now occasional music gigs too, so I will get back to you as quickly as I can! Thanks!

– Eilee

 

 

 

All content on this site © 2013-2018/present L. Eilee S. George; all rights reserved.