From Hockney to the Self-taught, Artists Choose iPad as Canvas

Artists of many backgrounds, from world renown British painter David Hockney to relative unknown, self-taught artists are turning to the iPad to create digital works of art.

Hockney’s show Fresh Flowers, which he has exhibited at galleries in Paris and Toronto, shows off his iPad-based works. Visitors see multiple iPads mounted to the walls that display Hockney’s paintings, as well as a slide show of all of the compositions.

Recently reviewed Hockney’s Toronto show at the ROM. Thanks to the iPad, and Hockney’s talent for embracing this new medium, fine art is now part of the pop-tech realm. This cross-pollination of art and technology is just one new avenue that the iPad has opened to its users.

Hockney’s app of choice is Brushes, which is available for download in the App Store for just $7.99. Knowing that Hockney’s raw materials are nothing more than an eight dollar app and his fingers may evoke the sense that “yes, maybe I can do this too” in some would-be painters.

It’s not surprising that the iPad is growing in popularity as a digital painting medium. In addition to showing off some of Hockney’s creations, Global Grind offered works by some lesser-known, self-taught artists who, like Hockney, have turned to the iPad as a creative medium.

Watch as digital artist Kyle Lambert creates a likeness of Beyonce using the Brushes app and just one finger to paint:

Obviously, your results may vary. However, the iPad’s flexibility as a medium excites creator and viewer alike. Plus, as Hockney told NPR in 2010, painting on the iPad is convenient as it leaves “No cleaning up. No mess.”

Hockney fans in the UK can plan to catch David Hockney RA: A Bigger Picture, which will include works on iPad as well as films and will open at London’s Royal Academy of Arts in early 2012.

About Emily: Emily is a freelance writer who loves discovering new apps whenever she can pry the iPad away from her children or husband. You can contact her via Twitter: @whatwentwrite