"Abstract painting is abstract. It confronts you. There was a reviewer a while back who wrote that my pictures didn't have any beginning or any end. He didn't mean it as a compliment, but it was." -Jackson Pollock
I do not seek to be confrontational in the manner of Pollock. In fact, it would seem that my abstracts seek to blend in, at the moment. That may be every bit as subversive. Certainly things to think about. Happy Thursday Y'all!
"I often paint tranquility. If you stop thinking and rest, then a little happiness comes into your mind. At perfect rest you are comfortable." -Agnes Martin
22"x30" Watercolor on Rives BFK
Happy Wednesday Y'all!
I love seeing where other people work & how they have their studio layed out: this extends to beauty collections on youtube. I always learn something about their process, hence todays studio snapshots. It is half of a two-car garage & I love it! I have been working here for 1.5 years so things have crept onto the walls & some clutter along with the work. But mostly the chaos is kept at bay. One thing I have found most useful is always having fresh water & paint ready to go. That way the second I walk in I can work & not have to worry about getting supplies ready. Happy Monday Y'all!
Mountains or Water
The entire time, prior to my month hiatus in the ADK, I was working on the aerial views I thought I was drawing inspiration from my time spent in the LowCountry waterways. Then I drove up to camp. As I entered the mountains I saw the forms that I have been laying down open up in front of me. I have been painting variations on the mountains & that has created the waterways. I find the interconnectedness intriguing. Happy Friday Y'all!
Largest Painting Yet
After a month of not painting why not tackle the biggest white expanse you can find? That is certainly my M.O. This painting is 22"x30". Also why not change the paper while you are at it? I used Rives BFK, my all time favorite paper, which is a cotton rag mould made cold press, as opposed to the HOT press Arches watercolor paper I had been using for this series. I figured why not tackle the large paper? There is no time like the present. It is very exciting to be painting again & I am on the lookout for even larger paper. Happy Thursday Y'all!
Unlike the flowers which I prefer white, the moths were so colorful & diverse that I could not help, but be intrigued. Mostly the freak me out. I am not a fan of LARGE flying carnivorous insects (the moth picture below is the size of a piece of bread?!) But their colors & forms are so gorgeous & have adapted to fit their survival needs. When you think about the moths, in those terms, they become design objects. In that category they would receive high marks all around. So I overcame my fear/squeamishness long enough to document a few of the remarkable moths. I can get lost in the ribbon tail of the green Luna moth, the pink lemonade colors of the Rosy Maple moth, & the mimicry of the leaf-like Blinded Sphinx. They really are remarkable. Happy Wednesday Y'all!
White flowers are certainly a favorite of mine. My post-bac roommate, the wonderful Lydia Makepeace, remembers that even 10 years ago my preference was always for white flowers. I think it is because of their nuance. You can observe their form & delicacy clearly without the assault of riotous pink or purple. That being said my computer wallpaper is this gem by Molly Jacques Illustration. I will leave you with this quote from Abraham Lincoln, "All my life I have tried to pluck a thistle & plant a flower wherever the flower would grow in thought & mind." Happy Tuesday Y'all!
Strife & Beauty
Anytime I return from camp I go thru culture shock. When you have spent close to a month living in a lean-to, yes there are showers & lights, but no air-con or internet, your perspective shifts. Daily seeing the mountains & lake, spending a lot of the day outside, is distinctly different then my life at home which includes a lot of time with a computer screen. In the past week I have seen planes shot from the sky, children deported to third world countries full of strife, wars continuing on & friends going thru lots of hard things. The world outside of #lakelife is hard. So why talk about all of the hard and then show us photos of beautiful sunsets. Because the world is both: sadness & beauty, strife & glory. And it is important to remember that. Happy Monday Y'all!
Strawberry Jam & Expertise
This summer I learned how to make strawberry jam. I have made it a few times before, but this summer I feel like I really understood the process & could make it by myself, if I was inclined. There are many steps, but first among them is acquiring strawberries in bulk. The most delicious way to do that is pick them yourself. I do not remember the last time I ate something as tasty as the first strawberry. You have to test the strawberries, in the field; it is important to choose a strawberry you think will be good & then find out if it is, so as you go along picking you will have an idea of what to look for. Truly the warm sweetness that cascaded in my mouth was a version of Beulah. If I had not had an expert jam maker leading the process I would have been lost. I would not have know to test a strawberry, just how clean to make the jar tops, or a half a teaspoon of butter in the berries before the pectin makes all the difference (because butter makes everything better). All of these things are critical to a successful finished product. Expertise, know-how, knowledge, whatever you want to call it, is as crucial to this process as it is to art-making. You need to approach with a beginners wonder & openness and take in the knowledge & process of a pro. Sometimes you can be your own teacher thru trial & error, but other times you can learn from a master & then take what you learn & make it your own. Thank you Mary for teaching me about jammin'. Happy Friday Y'all!
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