New Beginnings

After nearly a year of contemplation, my husband and I sold our San Francisco Bay Area home and moved to the east coast.  Since we are both native New Englanders, this new empty nest phase could be considered a homecoming.  We've chosen the Berkshires: green hills for him, lots of art for me and not too far from the ocean.

Looking forward to setting up a studio space and seeing what develops.

Practice

For the last couple weeks my "real" work has kept me from painting - or so I tell myself.  But  I made it to the figure studio last Thursday and, how wonderful, Signe, a favorite model was there with a new haircut!  

It is a privilege to have models who return every few months.  It allows me to see new things in their bodies and hopefully, convey something of their personalities as I come to know them.  

Hands have been giving me problems for quite a while so I have set up a personal exercise to draw or paint a hand or two a day.  I remember doing this in high school but clearly need a refresher. When I was younger, I imagined that artists had a sort of magical ability to transfer the image in their minds to paper or canvas.  But like anything a person does well, practice is essential so that's what I'll do.  Because nothing is more "real" than the desire to make art.

 

Always a work in progress

There's a question that I am often asked and that I ask of my friends: How do you know when the painting is finished?  My flip response is "Right after you do something to screw it up."  

Lately, I have not been starting my paintings with a specific emotional goal in mind.  They are more pictorial exercises - can I create a mood, what happens if I juxtapose these 2 colors, how to best express volume, where do I want the viewer's eye to go 1st.  All these things will, I hope, lead to more fluid and technically better paintings.  

I hope to develop into a painter who can do 2 things at once - explore the fact that a painting is all about applying color to a canvas and create images that evoke an emotional response.  

When I can look at something I've created and feel I've done both, I guess I'll know it's finished. And, as I am human and competitive, I have no doubt that the criterion for both will not remain fixed.  And that means that I will always be learning and growing.  

 

Putting it out there

Creating this website was hard - not just figuring out the platform, which is pretty easy but more time consuming than I had anticipated, it was hard to decide to make my work public.  What if nobody likes it?  Is it possible I'll be ridiculed?  And why does a grown woman worry so much?

But I want people to see what I make, heck even buy it so I have room in my house to create more art.  I am growing as an artist and excited about it.

So I decided to just show you.  These works represent nearly 10 years of painting.  Some years I made a lot of images, then again, some years there was so much other stuff going on I didn't paint for months at a time.  

In spring of 2015, I decided to make painting a regular practice and to go back to figure painting, something I had not really done since graduating from school. Now I know I will paint at least once a week.  And I've moved from watercolor to acrylic, from 11" x 15" and 15" x 22" sheets to 30" x 30" canvases.  They are grouped somewhat logically; except the Works in Progress because most of the recent figure paintings are still, and will be for a while, in progress. I just didn't want to put everything under one heading.

A few weeks ago, I decided to try a new challenge (or maybe I just wanted to buy even more art supplies) and take a plein air oil painting class. Those images are called Works in Progress.

Thank you for taking the time to look and read.  Please feel free to comment.