Four Master Art Hackers of their time

I'm sure you have a lot of questions about my latest blog post: How the hell Art Hacking exactly works? Well, I can't give you the one trick, because there's potentially 7 billions ways of achieving it. So, this stream of essays will dive into many aspects that I discovered by myself. I'm offering you to take the red pill, but how you choose to enjoy the trip through the rabbit hole entirely belongs to you.


Every day when I wake up I feel excited about art. Not about what I'm going to create, but about what I'm going to learn, because it's so wide, almost infinite and I know so little!

If you feel like you're struggling with your art, and are intimidated by all the talented artists out there, then you're not alone. I do too and I can completely relate to your fears and frustrations.


If it can help you to feel better, did you know that my drawing skills still sucks? Many people think that I "draw well" because I create "pretty pictures", but it's all the contrary. There's not one day where I don't struggle with my drawing and painting. And it requires a lot of tricks at many levels so it doesn't show in my final images.

All these tricks, I ended up calling them Art Hacking. As soon as I feel that something as to be done a certain way, I start to tweak, take shortcuts, invert steps, use a new tool, go back, try another solution, steal a trick from an awesome artist, paste a photo, create happy accidents and whatnot.

Art Hacking starts when you stop thinking that you are cheating and consider every possible way of achieving your art goal.

There's nothing like cheating in art. Art theft exists, dishonesty exists (and I don't think anyone can thrive in the art community on theft and lies). But cheating? No, sorry, it doesn't exist, because it would need rules accepted by everyone and I'm sure you'll agree with me that Art can't be bound by rules.

I think this state of mind goes way beyond tricks and practical solutions to spark creativity and render with all the bells and whistles. I believe that, to be a successful art hacker, you need to embrace 3 essential statements:

  • You are a perpetual student.
  • You understand how bad you are now compared to what you can do later.
  • You take control of your art education by applying a holistic learning, cultivate an analytic mind and constantly adapt your learning path.


It's interesting to realize that Art Hacking is not something made possible by digital media. Raphael, Caravaggio, Velázquez or Vermeer, just to name a few, used state of the art optic and mirror techniques to reach their ultra realistic mastery.

Past decades findings, backed up by strong evidences that grow in number every years, show that painters as soon as the XVth century used mirrors combined later with lenses to project images on their canvas. They were the hand in the camera.

That's a wide subject, but if you want to find out more by yourself, search for "Hockney-Falco Thesis", "Vermeer Caravaggio camera obscura" or "Tim's Vermeer". If it's new to you, be prepared to a fantastic story about how art, science and techniques were key to Old Masters success.

This is only an introduction to give you an idea of the subjects I want to cover in The Art Hacker, I'll come back to these points in details in my next essays.


There's one thing I can encourage you to do right now: Start searching on your own, challenge what I say, investigate the elements I'm bringing and confront your findings to your experience. Participate in the discussion, reply to others' comments and elaborate your thinking. Be an Art Hacker today.


So do you practice Art Hacking? Do you think this is all cheating anyway? 

Let us know what you think in the comment section below or in the Facebook group.