Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Pink Gumball Machine




I have hung on to this pink gumball machine for a long long time.  This is another one of those items that have been in the back of my mind just gestating for the appropriate time  to paint.  I used my alizarin orange paint stick in this and love that color.  I bought 3 paint sticks and plan on using them when I can.  I think the brand is RL.  They are particularly creamy and smooth to use.

Cosmetic Bag

This is a quick little study that I did yesterday.  It is 6x8 inches on a Raymar canvas panel.  I was reading something wonderful yesterday in my Cloth, Paper Scissors Magazine and I will share it with you because I think that it affects all of us in  way.  This woman, Carolyn Dube, who creates wonderful mixed media art spoke about the defeating chatter that lingers in our mind.  I seem to struggle with this a lot and that was one of the things that I wanted to tackle the most with this last e-course.  Sometimes I want to paint so badly and the only thing I can do is to sit and look at my paints and then the indecision sets in.  Well, I am working on that in a big way!   I have decided to just tackle painting things and challenge myself to paint things that I never would have tried to paint before.  I am working at staying loose and not prejudging my efforts.  I am not even going to look back because I am on a forward track!  Do you ever buy supplies thinking of all the wonderful things that you can do with them and then there they sit months later without being touched?  Uh huh....that is something that annoys me a lot.  So I am going to dust off the pastels, the house paint, the paint sticks, the gouache, the watercolors and get right at it!!!

Friday, October 24, 2014

"What If You Fly?"






This will be the last of the do-overs for a while.....Oh boy....my Etsy shoppe is almost bare.  I really have enjoyed the makeovers though.
Have you ever thought about failure?  Will I fail at this painting?  What if I fail?  Does it hold you back from liking or loving what you paint?  Evaluating this can really be motivational....

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Break Those Boundaries





Oh boy am I ever having a wonderful time .... just whaling away on my paintings that weren't making it.  I have trusted my intuition rather than trying to fit a mold that I just didn't fit.  All started in 2008 when I took a class from a great painter and tried to be like her....well...I never could and I got tighter and tighter and hated painting in a way.  Or...I was disappointed that what I did was so different from the way that I thought I should be painting.  Breaking those boundaries that I did indeed set for myself!  You have heard me mention Brooke Wandall the gal that I took the recent e-course with...I attribute much of my change to her thoughtful guidance.  It wasn't what she said it was what she didn't say!!!  For me that made all the difference.  Thank you, Brooke...forever grateful.....

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Red Beets and Defying Old Worn Out Fears

I really enjoyed going back into this painting and working it up a bit.   These are old paintings that I liked in some ways, but I knew that they just weren't going anywhere.  You are always told "Don't go back into a painting once it is done".  Well, I say "Why not? I  If its just sitting around and you know something is wrong with it....and it is over looked all the time".  So, because I learned not to be afraid of messing things up from my abstract class I just am doing a free fall and enjoying the ride!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Reduction Exercise



This exercise was one that I heard about from another artist and thought that it sounded like it would be very informative.  Here is the way that it works.  The top painting is an 8"x10" oil on stretched canvas where I used well over 300 strokes of color to create the image.  The middle painting is the same size but I used about 150 strokes of color to create the image.  The bottom painting is once again the same size and I used about 100 strokes of color.  I worked progressively faster and more deliberately.  My favorite is the bottom painting.  It is in the direction that I wish to go.  Leaner and more spontaneously.  I tend to work loose...but this is much looser. The middle painting is stiff and it looks too deliberate.   There are problems with the bottom painting because I wanted a darker palette of colors and did not achieve that. ( I will refer back to Peggi Kroll Roberts and her suggestion to divide the palette in half with darks on one side and lights on the other just to keep things straight in your head.)  The main thing that I learned from fewer strokes is that the painting reads better and doesn't get too mushy.  There is no going back over strokes of color because they are so scarce and each must count.    Also, the gesture is so very important. I won't always paint quite like this but will work progressively to make the marks amount to something in terms of shape as well.
 
I have yet to find a palette of colors that really turn me on but I will keep trying.  The Zorn palette comes the closest but it lacks some of the color range that I like.
Do you have a favorite palette that you would like to share?  I would love to hear from you.  I have miles to go before I feel that I am actually getting somewhere but the journey begin one step at a time.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Not To Worry....Just Paint



 
I began the morning with a palette knife abstract painting in oil on a 6"x 6" stretched canvas.  It felt good just to warm up and feel loose.
Yesterday, I painted an 8"x 10" image of some cooks in a restaurant.  I allowed myself to use as many strokes of color as I wanted.  I lost count but I am sure that it exceeded 300.  This was painting one in a series of paintings.  The second painting that I completed today was painted with half the number of strokes and I think that was around 150.  The final painting which I will tackle tomorrow will be the same scene painted with half again making the total strokes under 75.  This is a very interesting and somewhat challenging exercise.  I can see in todays painting that I deliberated more with each stroke capturing shapes of color and value.  The shapes are larger and more purposeful.  There is however something in the first painting that I like and that is atmosphere.  If I can somehow merge these two aspects into one painting then I think that I will have crossed a milestone.  I also want to work on the color and try to work in a darker range of values.  On a scale of 10 to 1 with 10 being the darkest; I want to work in the 4 to 10 range.  I think that will help create some of the atmosphere that I am looking for.  I will continue to use a limited palette of only 3 colors and white.  Softer edges will help to create the atmosphere that I am seeking.
Also, in regards to yesterdays posting.  It is na├»ve to think that a person can't paint to sell, that is the way to be able to keep the paintings moving forward.  You need money to buy art supplies.  The challenge therefore is to paint what you love.  And, Love what you paint!!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Do You Ever Worry About What To Paint?

Among The Rushes
I am posting this painting again because I am at a turning point in my work.  Have you ever faced the day and wondered what on earth you wanted to paint that day?  For me it happens most every day!  "Can I be my most authentic self today or am I going to worry about painting what I believe will sell?"  What a dilemma.  When I paint abstractly I just concern myself with reaching deep enough within myself and to draw upon my intuition and my inner voice.                 Money Plant, Original mixed media painting on paper
 
  As you know, I recently took an e-course from Brooke Wandall.  I am including one of her paintings here for your viewing. I loved the course that I took from her and feel that it has been a major turning point in my work.  What she did was give me the courage to jump the fence and work more abstractly.  I have been wanting to do that for years and never did find the courage until I met Brooke.  What did she do? 
She gave me tools that enable me to relax and realize that this is just so simple, be courageous and try to confront your fears and then believe in yourself!  Once you begin never stop just keep pressing forward.
How this will all play out in my work I really don't know.  I just do know that I feel differently.  I enjoy the brush in my hand a little bit more and let the paint flow without trying to control it so much.  This shows in my more representational work as well.  It will be interesting to see where this will lead. 
I have found that painting what excites you is the most important thing.  It is the energy that you bring to the painting that shows in the work!

At the Grill

On our recent trip to Augusta Georgia my husband and I ate at a small restaurant that we like. My husband caught these shots of the workers cooking meals. This is to be the first painting out of 3 of the same image. I will try and reduce the number of paint strokes by have in each of the 2 remaining. I painted over a canvas that I had erroneously applied white to as a cover and so everything looks washed out. Lesson learned. The painting is 8"x10" on a stretched canvas.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Among the Rushes


This is a 20"x 20" oil on stretched canvas.  I call it Refections...although I like the title ...Among the Rushes....which one do you prefer?