plein air landscape painting
Painting From Life vs. From Photos

In my previous post I discussed conceptual- versus procedural-based art and asked how an artist could have the two dimensions interact. This got me thinking about how different art forms mix these aspects. Contemporary conceptual art, for example, tends to be big on ideas and light on craft, whereas something like the Painting a Day movement is more procedure-based. Renaissance art, in contrast, combined conceptual and procedural components.

Below I try to express this distinction in a two-dimensional plot where the axes are Conceptual and Procedural.


Note, nothing about this hypothetical representation says anything about the quality of the artwork. It is possible to have a technically developed artwork, full of ideas, that is just plain bad. Conversely, a simple, non-conceptual painting could be something wonderful.

Where on this graph would you like your work to be? Where do you think you are now?

Where is the money today? It seems that the conceptual gets rewarded more than the procedural.