Sunday, January 27, 2013

Metamorphosis of "Red Oval Rings"

In progress (and somewhat skewed)
acrylic and graphite on canvas
"30 x 30"

Frost on Moss -- a delightful microcosm just beyond my window 
Well, what can I say about "Red Oval Rings"?  A couple of people made a couple of comments about the painting and offered a few ideas regarding changing what I had considered to be a finished work.  I decided to move forward with altering the painting last Saturday evening, but attempted something different than the ideas suggested:  I added an orange glaze to a portion of the lower part of the painting but immediately considered it a catastrophic decision.  Unfortunately, I couldn't remove it all; so. . . within the matter of an instant, I had to make a bold decision to treat the entire painting to the orange glaze, (albeit, much diluted).  What happened next was a series of relatively quick decisions to further alter the palette which had just shifted appreciably.  

I was not a happy camper when I finally called it quits late that night.  It wasn't so much the fact that the painting was now headed in a different direction; it was more about loss and frustration. I was sad to have "lost" a painting in the sense that the former image was now gone; and very frustrated that a painting that I had considered to be finished was now going to require many more hours to finish -- hours that I had hoped to be investing in a new piece.

The next day was spent deliberating about whether to add graphite lines to the perimeters of the figures in the lower half of the painting and if so, whether to handle the lines differently on the white stripes than on the muted colored stripes (I did).  I also deliberated about whether to add lines to define the vertical bar in the lower half and embellish the bar in the upper half, and whether to add a light grey glaze to the lower portion of the vertical bar. (I did.)  Since then, I've been observing my "new painting " deliberating about my next step and specifically, the possibility of lightening the blue and/or adding some areas of "aged pomegranate" hue. 

 The irony of all of this is that prior to deciding to lay down that pesky orange glaze, I talked to my husband about the "gravity" of such "no way back" decisions for artists -- and the boldness required to take the flying leap and risk losing hours and hours of work, and in some cases, a fair amount of expense in materials.   But, on the other hand, there is the notion of "nothing ventured, nothing lost" and also, "no pain, no gain".  Which leads me to this wonderful post on the subject of taking risks by one of favorite painters, Nicholas Wilton   (Yes, I've mentioned him more than once here, and have no doubt provided a link to his post on risk, before; but it's been awhile and the post is worth reading again and again.) 

Here's hoping for a wonderful week ahead for everyone!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

New Painting and Last Garden Holdout

 "Hovering Ovoid"
12 x 24


My most recent painting started off with a very different palette before finding its way to what you see above. In fact, it took almost an entire weekend to get out of the starting blocks on this one. Palette and composition were both giving me fits.  During that same weekend, I snapped the above photo when I came upon the winter squash that someone had perched on top of our outdoor fireplace.  Who's to say?  Perhaps it influenced my painting in the end.  Now that this painting is done, I'm off in a direction other than ovoids. :)

I'm enjoying reading other artists and makers' philosophies and approaches to goal setting (or not) for the new year.  As for me, I'm working on "facilitating art-making".  By that, I mean I'm reassessing (yes, again!) the physical layout of my "studio" work areas and my art storage areas, which are spread out through most of the rooms of our small home. I'm  moving some furniture, shifting the contents of cabinets, bookshelves, etc., and cleaning out as I go.  My goal is to make it easy to "jump" into painting, or printmaking, or sewing, or gluing, etc., whenever I have a small block of time.  And, to make it feel as though it's not a big deal to get out the necessary supplies and equipment and then put them back again at a moment's notice. And what's more, we're accepting (embracing?) the idea that we live in an art studio. Sound familiar? :) I'm optimistic!

Hope your year is off to a great start!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year


Snippets from my last few days of 2012:   Frost in the morning that lingered in the shade of a crystal clear day; bald eagles soaring above with great blue herons, geese, ducks and snipe on the ground below; glorious stars and a nearly full moon, shimmering beautifully on the water; coyotes yipping in the chill of the night; hot coffee and a fire to warm each morning.
Happy New Year Everyone!!
Thank you for your interest in my little corner of the world. :)

Wishing you all the best in 2013.