Transition

Not sure where I am going or why, but here are two new pieces.  The first inspired while listening to the My Favorite Murder podcast.  The second inspired by a photo of cleaning supplies I saw on Pinterest.

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Recent work

 

These are some of the pieces I have been working on this summer.  A few were unfinished pieces, that I finally got around to completing.  The three medicinal herbs, wintergreen, bridewort and foxglove are all on 5×7″ canvas board.  Painted from my own photo collection.  The American Catalpa is painted from a tree in my own backyard.  The abstracted painting of blue and yellow and green trees started out en plein air but was abstracted in studio and is still incomplete.  The black lab was a photo from camping last summer at a hunting camp on Copper Lake near Old Forge NY.  And is a painting of my dog.  The two recent abstractions painted on gessoed archival canvas board with a gallery frame, are inspired by the Schweinfurth’s Quilting by the Lake show.

 

I have not painted A lot  this summer, what with babysitting my precious, bright, cheerful, and darling grand daughter.  Wouldn’t change a single thing there.  Would go through every trauma, struggle and heartbreak a thousand times to have her in my life.  I also have been struggling with the chronic disease that reared its ugly head after a 1200 calorie diet threw my whole system off.  I have lost weight but at what price? I am also taking a graduate arts administration class this summer which is super time consuming but worth it.  I am also downsizing tremendously and have gotten rid of some furniture, electronics, books which I can no longer read due to my vision problems (thank the goddess for iPads), clothing, purses, shoes and household items. And of course flat water paddling is my favorite past time besides babysitting, painting and reading.  (I must have read 15 books already this summer).

 

I am am thinking about how all my work fits together, and really having some deep meta cognitive thoughts.  I want to put my love of fiber arts, my realism, my abstractions, my love of line pattern and color altogether into a coherent retrospective of my work.  I guess that is my next goal to kind of weed out more chafe and sort it all into a timeline and mental gathering of my life’s work.

Thats it. 😘😘

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Paul Cezanne and American Abstract Artists

 

One of the first master copies I ever did was one of the incarnations of Paul Cezanne’s Mt. Saint Victoire.  During a critique the other day I was called an American Abstract artist which made me think of my inspirations throughout the years, Cezanne, the artists of The Steiglitz liniage, O’Keeffe, Hartley and Dove and how I have noticed some similarities in their paintings as shown above.  Less so with the O’Keeffe but I am sure there is one out there I have to find it, that shows direct influence of Cezanne.

These are a few favorites:

 

I am also a big fan of Henry Moore (not an American abstract artist but a defining influence) and his flowing forms and smooth lines

And and the simplified shapes and smoothness of the paint and the flowing lines of Thomas Hart Benton

Other artists her artists whom I love and have influenced me are Wassily Kandinsky, Kathe Kollwitz and Ansel Adams:

What these all have to do with each other is beyond me at the moment.  Maybe a better analyst can help me figure it out?  I would love to hear someone else’s thoughts on this.

Throwback Thursday

I have been cleaning out my old art work , trying to be discerning about what I have done, using old pieces for the class I am taking (collage to prepare for a painting) and just generally organizing my space.  I have some ways to go because I need to organize my small closet, take over the “gun room” (shh tell no one!) and work on my storage area.  There are some other things in my work space that I find irritating and have to be set up better.  For me, being a messy artist doesn’t work, I hate bumping stuff off shelves with my elbow, or not having a safe place to put my tea.

I found this while going through my flat files:

firstpainting.psd

WIPs

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The assignment was to make several collages and then create a painting form the collage.  Because I was seeking something different with the endless tired still life, I was told to create four or five paintings based on my backyard painting.  See below.  I think for this reason they have a feeling of collage.  The painting with the small cutout tree.  And the full chickadee is my favorite.

I did both I half assed the collages, taking old images of my own work and slapping them together into something new.  I have at least two good paintings out of that.  I have an unfinished collage that is very intriguing and every time I walk by it I say OH.  I accidentally made a discovery when I was cleaning and placed it on a piece of paper that I liked but didn’t use and it has potential.

I think I will work on those a bit today before my meeting.

These two paintings I worked on yesterday.  I am quite happy with one of them.  The other is in need of additional work.  Especially now that I look at it online.  It helps my eyes somehow to see it backlit and smaller I can focus on what it needs better.

Still adjusting to my new eyes.

On the (easel) Dining Room Table

I spent the morning cleaning and organizing the studio.  Having the desk next to my work table was just awkward and was a poor use of the desk.  After several hours of work I went out for fish at Rudy’s a local iconic favorite.

When I returned I got to work on an assignment for the graduate painting class I am taking at SUNY Oswego.  I took the class to improve my skills and to start to show my work, because it is ridiculous that I have been painting and making art for 25 years and have had no commercial exposure.  After  completing the painting of the back yard, the assignment was to make some collages based on my backyard painting but collages in general.

I was kind of being a snot, because I think the professor is underestimating my experience and a comment he made on Thursday seemed to be a tick in the column of hmmm about using quality stretcher strips (for over 13 years?) okay anyway.

The first piece here is a painting I did while living with a person who was not very good for me spiritually I painted the background, and then I painted the dejected angel put along they were not very good.  So I combined them.  As I look at it, it is so much a reflection of the neighborhood and the feeling I had while living there.  I can totally see the whole situation in the painting.  But y0u would have to walk the same third mile stretch of road with the multistory nursing home and feel the watchful eye of the neighbor who had a murder in her house thirty years previously and the bitchy Indian woman who didn’t want me training my dog on the street, and the German Aunt and mother who were constantly overwhelming me and the man, with his he is a bully and a clown persona.

Not sure, would LOVE commentary.

I took a marker drawing of a city, Petare (Spelling?) a slum in Venezuela, was partially the inspiration, and honestly I wish my ex husband could see this doodle because he loved it.  Anyway.  I added the sun that I put into a doodle I did while I was laid up for over a week with severe back pain. I could not walk or even move easily.  Excruciating. I drew two doodles of spines, when I first posted them online my high school friend who has a bad back and MS immediately recognized the spines and the pain in the drawings.

I loved the colors together and had to make very few changes to fit the two pieces together.  When I was obsessed with collage about 15 years ago I did several pieces where the city was overwhelming nature, so very much a part of my psyche and spirit at the time, having grown up in farm country, and the deep woods of upstate (real upstate not Westchester County) NY and the remote hills streams and meadows of Columbia County.  For some reason this all just fits for me.  The strength of the backbone hugging the fire of the sun rise and the silhouettes of the trees, a symbol for me of the self and now the blue river washing clean the grungyness of the city.

The two sumo wrestlers, not really but maybe, the two curvalicious female figures at odds with one another is much better in natural light, and is not complete.   See below for the remaining four pieces.

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Original “doodle” with pieces of other doodles added.  Hard to see here will repost later with blue river flowing through.
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Original colored pencil drawing depicting two figures at odds. 
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Negative space tree draft/collage/ experimentation for backyard
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Collage experimentation for backyard
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Collage Experimentation for backyard
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Playing with an old map birch bark and a river colored canoe, drawing from a receipt 1932 bi prop and bi wing plane 

So the three collages are all experiments with what I want to do for a final project for the painting class.  I hate them all.  But the one with the pine tree branches against the blue sky and the negative space tree is tolerable.  I have more to do and will add to this when I make a final painting for the class.

I have been wanting for a long time to do a piece with maps this is just an experiment and I am sure more will come later this is not finished nor fully actualized.

 

finished artwork.

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Bridge at Caughdenoy -complete

CAUGHDENOY

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Caughdenoy

I made some adjustments on the painting, I wanted the transition from the realism of the bridge to the abstraction of the trees behind it, to be less jarring.  So I brought the shore line under the bridge to a more realistic middle ground.  Next I made the color between the railings of the bridge more like the colors that were used in the background.  Finally, I added more of a dark slow shore zig zagging through the right side, while stylizing the ripples of the water, and adding light to the rapid area in the more active part of the river.

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Backyard Complete
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Backyard

In Backyard, I left the realistic fuzzy area under the tree, and at the edge of the house more or less as is.  I reworked the sky so that it was more intense, choosing to ignore the large greyish brown area of trees in the background.  I intensified the blue sky in the background, and adjusted the transition of sky to land behind the tree.  The edges of the pine branches were stylized more with a jagged zig zag edge.  I made the space in between the branches of the tree more intense, focusing on creating a kind of stylized vaginal area that if you really look at trees is so obvious in the way the branches are laid out, realistically.  I tend created more of a feeling of space in the lawn by using the same technique of zig zagging backward with the color blocks.

Finally I took the bird feeders in the foreground and made completed them more realistically than the rest of the painting, with the exception of the realistic area to the left of the tree, reflecting that gorgeous Gamblim Cadmium red medium, with only a bit of Titanium White also by Gamblin and some Payne’s Grey by Williamsburg for creating value.  I believe the feeders were actually painted with Cadmium because it is an exact match in color.  And for the shining copper feeder I used a combination of Indian Red, Italian Red (Williamsburg) and Indian Yellow from Winsor and Newton (NOT my favorite) to create highlights and values.  I was impressed by how closely those colors approximated metallic copper.