Thursday, November 26, 2015


This work-in-progress really challenges what limited skills I possess and I hope, when finished, will reward a viewer (or many?) who encounter her.  Apart from the beauty of the subject, the colors, placement and crude technique of mark-making there is (as I see it) the unfolding struggle I am having to not make a story about flesh and beauty but more about human strength with vulnerability, about the space which separates us being as well the channel that joins us, our humanity everywhere so obvious yet obscured and displaced in today's world.  I get that the pose looks classic in a sense and dates perhaps to an earlier artistic period but although that might make this image seem a dusty relic of sorts I see it as a form of a link (not digital!) to all we've learned in our human struggles to survive and grow in the face of the voids around us.
I don't know if the artist should critique the work or endeavor to plumb the source of inspiration or the intention of the piece.  The work itself reveals the maker in spite of any intention.  So what I am making here is saying me, myself but as in life I think I guard my interior and at the same time have a willingness to present it in a painting as an ambiguous statement for others to sort out.
Not a trick!  Just the viewers burden and license.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Day 44 + look inside paint shop

So, I'm feeling a sense that this piece is done and rather than making any significant additions I'll only pick out some spots to amplify.  When I say "amplify" I mean I'll look to place some darks here and there for contrast and therefore depth.  I was hoping to hang it in my living room at least for a time.

What do I see here?  Some Maxfield Parrish, some movement/motion, an ungrounded perspective, something soft and lush but mostly a struggle for balance and security in space, a land with a bit of disorientation.  I wonder if the early and subsequently regarded impressionist painters sensed some upheaval in their personal worlds or the broader community when they developed their work?  Were they responding with their painterly skills to something in addition to light?  In my case I can't really identify the deep source or inspiration for this piece, if there was such a thing, but it does strike me that the space we inhabit is being altered all the time and adaptation, action or rebellion flow from change.  So, it's a philosophical piece!  Beautiful, too, I hope!

That's me at work.  Camera mounted on a tripod and the timer set.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Day 28

My work has been exciting and revealing as I move ahead with this.   I've noticed that what I feel is successful about the effort often flows from a flash of inspiration; much less calculation and much more about following the direction offered from the act of applying the paint.

Sap green, burnt sienna, cadmium yellow, titanium white, phthalo blue are in the pallet.