Arts, Entertainment, Music Archives

Buy Art Prints for Enjoyment and Pleasure, not Profit

There is an old saying in the art community that goes something like this: “Buy only what you like and pay only what the enjoyment of owning the work is worth to you”.

People who follow this rule when buying art prints have the satisfaction of building a collection that can provide many years of enjoyment.

Because tastes in art vary widely, “what you like” isn’t necessarily what your neighbor – or the art critics – like. Generally, we buy artwork because the subject evokes pleasant memories or experiences. The setting, atmosphere, and mood also add to enjoyment of the artwork.

So, unless you’re collecting art as an investment, buy what you like and enjoy the result. And here you can’t go too far wrong with art prints.

Today, art prints offer a huge range of choices and are also the most affordable. Note that we’re using “art prints” to mean art reproductions and not original prints.

Okay, so what’s the difference?

An art reproduction is where a high resolution scan is made of the original painting and then copies made using a variety of printing methods including off-set printing, giclee, or high quality inkjets. The reproduction can also be printed at different sizes and on different surfaces such as textured paper or canvas.

An original print on the other hand is not a copy of an existing work. Instead, from the outset the artist envisages a picture that can be created a number of times from an image drawn initially on a printing surface such as a metal plate, wood, linoleum, or stone (called a matrix).

This matrix is then used to print the image, usually by hand, on sheets of paper. So each print is in effect an “original”. Examples include etchings, lithographs, serigraphs (silk-screen), woodcuts and linocuts.

Because each print is usually hand-made by the artist, the number produced is typically quite small. Traditionally each print is then signed by the artist in pencil and given a number to indicate the size of the edition. This is the origin of “limited edition” prints.

The end result is that a genuine or original print will cost a lot more than an art reproduction. Below is an example of an etching by Eric Hesketh-Hubbard, an English artist born in 1892, titled “The Wheelwright”. It is signed by the artist in the margin and is number 32 of 50. (Courtesy Anne Hedley Fine Art).

Original etching, The Wheelwright

Although modern artworks are also sometimes produced as limited edition prints, the size of the editions is much bigger, often numbering in the hundreds, as the prints can be machine produced.

In most cases though art reproductions are “open edition” – in other words, there’s no limit on the number that can be printed and more can always be made to meet demand.

The advantage for the buyer with open edition prints is that prices can be kept low, while the artwork is also available in a variety of sizes and on a choice of surfaces. Add to that the many framing options and there’s no reason why you can’t decorate your home or office with tastefully framed prints that reflect your personal style, that will give years of enjoyment and – importantly – will not drain your finances.

Jack Vettriano Prints

Go directly to the Jack Vettriano Gallery to browse a superb selection of Jack Vettriano Prints

Artist Jack Vettriano (birth name Jack Hoggan) was born in Fife, Scotland in 1951. It was only after a girlfriend gave him a set of watercolor paints for this 21st birthday that he started teaching himself to paint. In 1989, at the age of 38, he submitted two paintings to the Royal Scottish Academy’s annual exhibition. Both were accepted and sold immediately.

In 2004 The Singing Butler (below), Jack Vettriano’s best known painting, was sold at Sotheby’s for close to £750,000. In the same year he was awarded an OBE for Services to the Visual Arts.

Singing Butler
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Fortunately, reproductions of his paintings, particularly Jack Vettriano Prints and Jack Vettriano Posters, have made his artwork available to those for whom originals or limited-edition prints are just too costly.

Because of innovative technology and advances in digital printing, it’s now feasible to print low numbers of art reproductions at affordable prices. And, while prices have dropped for small print runs, the caliber of fine art prints has improved. Advanced inkjet printers using a broad array of inks can produce vivid, pure colors, exceptional detail and subtle hues previously only achievable with the most expensive of machinery.

This means the normal person now has access to Vettriano fine art prints reproduced from original Jack Vettriano artwork. Reproductions are made on archival quality materials and often include canvas prints, providing an even more authentic appearance.

Incidentally, a Giclée print (pronounced “zhee-clay”) is a type of inkjet print derived from the French term meaning to spray or squirt. Giclee prints can be produced on a variety of paper surfaces, including various textures such as matte photo paper, watercolor paper, cotton canvas, or artist textured vinyl.

Giclée prints, which can be over a meter wide, have no visible dot pattern and the final product has all the tonalities and hues of the original artwork. That means a Jack Vettriano Giclée will be virtually identical to the original.

When selecting a Vettriano print, one has various framing options available (see below) that allow one to infuse the artwork with personal taste, ensuring a degree of originality.

Billy Boys
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Choosing a frame that complements not only the print but also the interior design space will add immensely to one’s appreciation of the artwork. Unless you’re very daring, it’s safest to keep it simple – modern frames with contemporary art, and so forth.

Using established interior design concepts allied with tasteful selection of the artist’s framed prints, it’s now quite feasible to decorate your home or office walls to look like a personalized Jack Vettriano gallery – without breaking your budget. After all, how many of us can afford just over a million dollars for an original? (The Singing Butler original went for around $1,070,000 at current exchange rates).

To visit Jack Vettriano’s official website, go to or to browse a selection of fine art reproductions, go to Jack Vettriano Prints.

How Important are the American Music Awards?

American Music Awards

Annual awards for the music industry always create a lot of interest and the American Music Awards are one of the most popular. Some awards are voted for by people in the entertainment field but these awards are voted by the public. This is why they are popular with the record-buying fans and with the artists themselves.

The awards were instigated by Dick Clark in 1973 and take place in November. The much-loved TV favorite also produces the show every year. The AMAs, as they are sometimes called, have different categories of awards, to reflect different musical genres. American Music Awards are given for Pop/Rock, Country, Soul/Rhythm and Blues, Adult Contemporary, and Latin.

Categories have been added as new musical trends appear, such as Rap/Hip Hop and Alternative. Contemporary Inspirational, a popular form of Christian music, is another category. There is also Favorite Soundtrack, International Artist Award and Favorite Breakthrough Artist.

The recipients receive awards for the Favorite Male, Female, Band or Album. The 2007 show was hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, the popular comic and talk show presenter. People could vote online for the first time.

In the Pop/ Rock category, the Favorite Male Artist was Justin Timberlake and the Favorite Female artist was Fergie. Nickleback was voted in the category for Favorite Band, Duo or Group. The American Music Awards are not just about presenting the prizes but putting on a good show for the viewing public. The show always has a number of top artists to perform, across a wide range of musical styles. The 2007 show included music from Alicia Keys, Celine Dion, Maroon 5, Rihanna and Duran Duran.

Some artists and groups have had exceptional success at the American Music Awards.

Mariah Carey has been nominated the most times for the Pop/Rock section and has won Favorite Female Artist on three occasions.

Michael Jackson leads the way in the number of nominations received for a male artist and has won for Favorite Male Artist, Single and Album.

The Eagles have been the most successful group and the only one to receive nominations over three decades. They have won twice for Favorite Band and twice in the album category. The albums voted for were Their Greatest Hits 1971 – 1975 and Hell Freezes Over.

Other performers to have received many nominations include Madonna, Elton John, Celine Dion and Fleetwood Mac. These awards will continue to be an important part of the musical calendar.

More articles from a Music Blog.

Don’t forget to browse through our enticing and colorful Music Prints & Posters Gallery.

Guitar Scales – Do You Need Them?

The Official Guitar Hero Online Store

When we are taught guitar scales on the internet or off, what we are in fact doing is learning to play the various individual notes on the guitar. When playing guitar scales one note is played at one time, unlike when you press on several different strings and together.

A scale is made up of eight notes which together are called an octave plus the 9th note which is the same as the first but one octave higher. You may have heard these sung as doh-re-mi-fa-so-la-ti-doh. This is known as a major scale. You will also learn chromatic scales which are a little different.

The best way to practice guitar scales is to do a little each day. For example you could start your practice or learning session with a couple of scales to get your fingers warmed up. Then move on to chords and songs.

Learning how to read guitar music online is great because you have your teacher there with you all of the time. You can follow along with all of the exercises and you will hear when you have it right or wrong comparing to the online recording. Some sites have ‘jam sessions’ that you can download and play along with. A good online course in how to play guitar will include major and chromatic scales.

Guitar scales are useful for all guitarists but if you plan to learn classical acoustic guitar, they are even more important. You will find that, at first, it takes some getting used to. Finding each note and moving from one to the next can be slow and awkward when you are new to it.

The good news is that with more familiarity, this will soon be easier. You will begin to know without thinking where the notes are and your fingers will grow more flexible and used to the fret bar. So it does not matter if you often making mistakes at first. Just a little time on your scales each day and you will soon make progress. Speed this up by signing up for our free guitar lessons, allow yourself time to develop this awesome new skill, and keep on playing guitar scales!

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Wii Console Games

Through the days of GameCube, GameBoy, Entertainment System and the DS line, there was really little between the likes of Nintendo, Microsoft (Xbox) and Sony (PS) in video gaming. That was until the Wii came along, and then adult wii games By now, few true -blue video gamers would dispute that Nintendo has clearly surged ahead.

Needless to say, the video game industry is highly lucrative and everybody wants a bite of the pie. To occupy pole position, the Nintendo Wii had to be top-notch as a lifestyle item. It is multimedia, personal computer, internet browser, communication device and most of all, the mother of all video game consoles, alliance cheat marvel ultimate wii.

Everything about Wii revolves around the remote controller and Nintendo Wii Games are no exception. Its motion sensing technology makes the gaming experience feels like the real thing be it tennis, bowling, baseball, boxing and so forth. So much for the ‘couch potato’ image of video gaming as the intrinsic specialty of Nintendo Wii Games is the players’ movement.

Nintendo Wii Games are inherently played without clutter or restraint through its wireless remote. It is the tennis racquet, steering wheel, gun or bowling ball depending on what game is on. Coupled with the Nunchuck secondary controller, it truly brings Nintendo Wii Games into a gaming dimension previously unknown. There is even an adaptor that fits over the remote for those who are more accustomed to the old-version controller.

Game consoles are generally tended to kids but Nintendo Wii Games can be family affairs, they have the range. There’s even a menu channel for setting up personal profiles called Mii so involvement and participation can be even and well-matched regardless of age, gender and other conditions. A wide variety of games are available spanning sports, action, fighting, puzzles, casino and others.

Classic and retro games are also widely available. For one thing, the Nintendo Wii is backward compatible to the games of GameCube and even Entertainment System series. 4 GameCube controller ports are actually provided although some of the old games can be played with the Wii remote. The media bay will also accept the old GameCube discs along with the newer Wii version.

The primary source of Nintendo Wii Games is the Wii games store. They are also available through the Wii Virtual Console. However, the pricing structure through these two avenues is rigid and can be steep in the long run especially for serial Wii gamers. That’s why an alternative source of Nintendo Wii Games with a commercial twist through online download is getting available nintendo now wii. At a fraction of the cost of the conventional disc, why wouldn’t it be?

Downloadable Ringtones

Are you thinking about getting a new cell phone plan? Are you looking at phones and family plans that will allow you to purchase cell phone service for everyone in your household?

Once you find the most affordable phones for you and your family, you may want to personalize your mobile devices. Getting downloadable ringtones will help to add a little happiness to your day when you hear your favorite songs, and when you log onto the sites that have ringtones available, you’ll find that other features like wallpapers and screensavers can be downloaded as well.

Here are some of the best sites to get downloadable ringtones, as well as a few tips for creating your own ringtones.

One of the best places to visit is This site will help you to customize all your ringtones and you’ll even be able to play the songs you download at different times. You can program your phone to play different downloadable ringtones at certain times of the day, or you can arrange to have holiday ringtones played during Christmas time. You can even program your ringtones so that a different song will play depending on who is calling.

Hotlink also offers Caller Ringtones, which is music that your callers will hear when they’re trying to get in touch with you. So, instead of listening to the phone ring and waiting for you to pick up, your friends and family can enjoy some of their favorite music before you answer the call.

You can also check out Funtonia if you’re looking for downloadable ringtones. This site has songs that are compatible with most phones, and you’ll be able to hear a sample of the songs you want before you buy. You can get the songs you want for as little as one cent per song, and there are lots of selections to choose from.

Sites like are also great for finding the ring tone selection that you want. There are lots of free polyphonic ringtones on the site, as well as MP3 downloads that you can program into your phone, so you can change the songs whenever you want. There are even mobile games that you can download for your phone, as well as software that may be compatible for your phone so that you can add more features to your mobile device.

You can also check out the sites for the phone companies that you are receiving service from. Downloadable ringtones information can be found on sites like,, or to find out more about how your phone works and which downloads are best for every phone on your plan.

Don’t forget to browse through our enticing and colorful Music Prints & Posters Gallery.

Make Your Fingers Dance With Guitar

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Every aspiring guitar player faces the following question: “What’s the best way for me to learn guitar?” Should you should teach yourself or hire a professional? Which guitar courses are recommended most often? What about those Internet-based guitar training sites?

These are all valid questions because how you learn to play the guitar is just as important as what you learn to play. Teaching yourself how to play might work just fine if you’ve got a good ear and some previous exposure to music theory or proficiency on another instrument.

If you are a “newbie” to playing any instrument, it would be a good idea to get a teacher — or — join an online program where you can interact with several teachers as well as fellow students.

In fact, I would recommend finding at least one ‘mentor’ or a ‘study buddy’ to learn with even if you lean towards teaching yourself.

To learn how to read the guitar notes the three tools you need are:

  • a few minutes of time every day,
  • a chart with the notes on the guitar fretboard, and
  • a music theory book.

The fretboard chart and the music book you can buy at a music store or on the internet. Or you could use the many free guitar lesson websites where you can download or bookmark pages showing you the guitar notes. The few minutes each day are often very hard to find but the small effort to step outside your daily routine and see where you can make time to learn the guitar notes will be rewarded.

Learning where the guitar notes are on the fretboard is best done while you are holding the guitar and playing the notes you can see on your fretboard chart. Learning which notes are which on the sheet music needs some book learning. If you find the notes of the guitar on the ledger lines, you will see that each note looks different according to its position on the fretboard.

The way to begin to learn which note is which is by using the word F A C E to remember the notes in the spaces between the leger lines and the phrase, Every Good Boy Deserves Fruit, to remember the notes E G B D F which are drawn directly on the lines. If the prospect of learning the guitar notes in this way gives you a feeling of rising panic, remember to take only small steps.

You can take guitar lessons from a musical school or over the internet, in either case you can easily learn to play guitar professionally. You can search over the internet for not only how to learn guitar but also which guitar to buy considering quality, size, price and accessories. Two popular types are electric and acoustic guitars.

A well made guitar has a distinct sound and this is what you should be listening for. Try not to buy a cheap guitar if you can get around it. You will find out later that you wasted your money.

Research is crucial to your success. Never buy a guitar based on impulse. Use an easy method of asking friends, strangers, and store owners for input on the best guitar for you. Only then, will you spend your money wisely, and if you are sure about learning guitar then you have a look on yahoo directory guitar

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Play Electric Guitar on DVD

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You always hear people saying they’d kill to be able to play the guitar, but they just don’t know where to start with the learning. Some of them have even bought some theory books and tried to play on an old guitar they found in the attic. However, everything seemed useless. Fortunately, there are now methods even the busiest person in the world who cannot find enough time to practice can use to learn to play the guitar.

Play Electric Guitar on DVD
First of all, you can’t learn on that old guitar you have found in the attic. You should go to a good music store and get a new one. If you’re not sure what you should get, ask the staff there for advice. Or better yet, if you have a friend who plays the guitar well, take him along to help you choose the right instrument for you. However, electric guitars are more suitable for beginners because they are easier to use.

Why Learn to Play Electric Guitar On DVD?

There are several ways to learn how to play the guitar. You can take up private lessons, buy a theory book or learn to play electric guitar on DVD. Learning from a theory book works for very few people. Most of us, however, will get bored after the first pages and leave it gather dust on our bookshelf forever. Private lessons are definitely the best way to go for people who are prepared to invest a good amount of time and money into learning to play the guitar.

However, if this is not you case, you can always learn to play electric guitar on DVD. You can purchase one from a local music shop or an online store. This way you will have the flexibility you need and you will spend much less money than by taking up private lessons. You will get to practice whenever you find the time to do it, in the comfort of your own home. Lessons are usually dynamic and include graphics, sounds and videos to ease learning and make it more fun.

Play Guitar
If you’ve decided you want to learn to play electric guitar on DVD, make sure the one you purchase suits your current level. There are DVDs available for any level. Don’t buy one for beginners if you already know the basics and need to improve your skills. If you are a newbie, purchase a DVD that starts with the basics.

At a beginner level, you will learn how to tune a guitar, read tablature, play chords and riffs and you will do some finger exercises. You will also learn some simple things about scales, as well as strumming, bending and sliding. If you want to get to an advanced level, you will learn more complicated techniques, as well as how to compose your own music.

You have to understand that to learn to play electric guitar on DVD is not the same thing with having face-to-face lessons. They won’t spot and correct your mistakes as a private teacher would or provide a customized teaching program to suit your learning style. However, if you can’t spend so much time and money on private lessons, DVD guitar lessons can be a good substitute.

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Learn Guitar Music

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Many beginners who are trying to learn guitar music get stuck. They don’t know what exactly they should practice, chords feel uncomfortable and are difficult to handle and they feel they’re not making any progress at all. They just can’t seem to find anything to concentrate on.

If you’re not at the level you would like to, it’s not necessarily because guitar is not for you or you don’t actually want to learn. There may be other things wrong with your learning style, your practicing schedule or even your guitar.

Learn Guitar Music
If the instrument feels uncomfortable, it is certainly not because your hands are too small or anything like that. There are guitarists who play the guitar with their feet and there must be some who have even smaller hands than you do. However, it might be something wrong with the instrument you have chosen. Maybe the strings are too high or the guitar is too big.

In order to be able to learn guitar music, you’ve got to find the instrument that works best for you. Guitars come in various sizes, with different lengths of fret boards. A visit to a good guitar store might prove very helpful. Better yet, if you have a private teacher or a friend who knows how to play the guitar well, you might be able to get some advice from them.

Learn Guitar
There are plenty of books, video lessons and online lessons that claim to help you learn guitar music. These are really useful for some people, especially for those who are good autodidacts. However, this is not the case for all. Some people need face-to-face instruction and they are rejecting anything else.

Think about the way you’ve learned other practical things in your life. If you worked well on books, you might succeed in learning guitar this way too. However, if you tend to get bored easily and don’t have the patience to read a theory book, you might need a private teacher. It may take you a while until you find one you can communicate well with and meets your learning style.

Some people want to learn just a few tab songs to play at campfires. However, if you want more, a good strategy would be to start from one single song or exercise you enjoy playing and then just expand on it. This may mean learning more songs by the same author or taking a certain riff through all the keys.

The most important thing for learning to play the guitar is wanting it. Desire is much more important than talent. If you really want to learn guitar music, you are willing to sacrifice other parts of your life for practicing. This doesn’t mean you should give up your social life and practice until you’re playing like a superstar. It means that you don’t feel the need to put up practicing for later to watch TV.

You shouldn’t try to learn guitar music because someone else makes you do it. You should learn only because you want to. Practicing should be fun, not stressful. If you enjoy playing, you sure are on the right path and at some point you will progress.
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Learning to play guitar chords on their own, without learning the theory behind them and how they fit into the musical scales may seem like enough for some people, but if your goal is to eventually play lead guitar, then understanding basic chord theory and how certain groups of chords fit into a particular music scale, can take you a long way towards achieving lead guitarist status.

So, welcome aboard – lead guitar lessons

“Three chord wonder” used to describe certain guitarists. Usually this is used to describe a guitar player that only bothered to learn three chords on the guitar and has taken to playing every song with them.

These chords are usually C, F and G, or sometimes the guitar chords A, D and E are used. These are easy beginner guitar chords, also known as open chords, so named because they are played near the nut of the guitar.

These chords on their own may be enough to play some very basic songs, of which there is definitely no shortage, but for the serious guitar enthusiast, a lot more is needed.

If you want to learn guitar – or to be more precise to learn lead guitar – it’s important to understand how chord progressions are put together, which chords fit into which scale, how to play barre chords and which notes make up the chords.

The great thing about the guitar is that it’s very much a visual instrument. When you’ve begun to master barre chords, and learned to create certain chord progressions by using them, you will start to see definite patterns develop on the fretboard. Certain guitar scale patterns begin to become obvious partners to certain chords, and before long, understanding which notes to play for each chord within a given key becomes second nature.

The western music system is based on the C major scale. Every note in this music system is named after a note in the C major scale. While there are other scales to learn. They are mostly derivatives of the major scale, with either an extra note added or taken away for different effect. The two most important guitar scales to learn are the major scale and the minor scale. These two scales is that the minor scale has the same notes as the major scale, the only difference being that they start at a different note. On the guitar this has the added advantage that one only needs to learn the major scale patterns, and the rest is pretty much sorted.

For more information about free guitar music lessons – read and watch the quoted materials.

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