Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year 2015

I'm trying out Yupo paper for the first time today. Apparently it's not actually paper at all, but rather a synthetic material-polypropylene. I've read that watercoloists are using it, but that any water based medium works. It's interesting and fun to play around a bit on the first day of the new year. This one's all about the brayer, squeegee, and inks, which I've never worked with before. I'm not sure this is quite done; I don't have a few of the supplies I'd like to have and I'm trying to figure out what I can use to improvise,  but I feel like I'm heading in the right direction. 

Monday, October 20, 2014

And Then It Was Done

If nothing ever changed, there’d be no butterflies.
~Author Unknown -

They say that the only constant in life is the fact that things will change, and this autumn is marking a time of big change for me.  Big change.  I've worked at my job for 25 years now, and sadly, it's coming to a close at the end of the month.  I look around my work space and find it hard to believe I won't be coming here before long.  I never defined myself by my job--I'm a dental receptionist/office manager so I guess I wouldn't--the "real me" be it student, yogini, or artist was always outside of work.  When I reflect back, however, I know that my years working here have been time well spent, and while I didn't define myself by my job, it was a full part of me.  It was a good environment for me; a steady pace without many highs or lows.  Quiet.  Good people.  I've spent half of my life here, in this very room, where I now sit typing this blog entry.   The days are long, but the years are short my friends.  Take time to savor.   

I've started a small series to mark this change in my life.  I imagine I'll be moving back and forth between encaustics and oil and cold wax.  At any rate, this is a 6x6 encaustic painting entitled, "And Then It Was Done."  First in the series.  More to follow.  

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Small Squares

I have long wanted to paint a series of wood panels and combine them to create one large piece of
art...can I just say that I have determined that procrastination is a form of self-torture?  Sometimes you just have to do it...stop thinking or planning so much and just get it done!  Thankfully, the 30 paintings in 30 days challenge gave me a kick in the pants, and, after all, I already had the small wood panels and the piece of plywood (24 x 24) that the 6x6 panels will ultimately be attached to.

I prepped five panels and have four of the five complete; tonight I will gesso another five.  I'm working with oil and cold wax, which is quickly becoming my favorite medium. Here are two of my "completed" panels...they may change a bit as things come together. 

Saturday, September 6, 2014

The Space Between

What art offers is space — a certain breathing room for the spirit. ~John Updike

When I titled this painting, for some odd reason, I was thinking about the breath.   Specifically, the pause between the inhale and exhale--that space where consciousness expands and infinite possibility exists.   I believe that when you pay attention to the breath you become a witness to spirit--your spirit.  I also believe that creating art in any form offers us the same glimpse.  

"The Space Between" is my day five painting for the 30 day painting challenge.  

Thursday, September 4, 2014

I Am Seeking Too

I recently discovered the journals of Elisabeth Couloigner on Pinterest, specifically her "I'm Searching" series.  I am captivated by the simplicity of color and texture that she employes, and have come to realize that it's those very things in art that really makes my heart sing.  It's why I love abstracts so much, especially those that lean toward the subdued.  I try to get colorful, but it just doesn't feel right to me--maybe down the line, who knows!

At any rate, I have been inspired to start my own journal in response to Elisabeth's "I'm Searching."  I've actually been looking at just this kind of thing to use as a way to start my day or before a painting session, so I dug out a moleskine journal, and "I Am Seeking Too" was born.  Interestingly, it's the one place that I enjoy using acrylics these days--I think it's the surface of the journal paper.  The real win, however, is that I'm playing, learning, and gathering ideas for future abstracts all at the same time. I will be using some of my daily journal paintings for part of the 30 day challenge I'm participating in.  I really, really want to keep up with everyone, and this is one way that I know I can. 

Monday, September 1, 2014

There All Along

"When the soul lies down in that grass the world is too full to talk about." Rumi

I've decided to participate in a 30 paintings in 30 days challenge via the Artists helping Artists podcast. While they won't all be encaustic, I'm happy to have this painting to present for day one. I basically stepped away from encaustics for the month of August and, instead, focused on oil and cold wax. It was a good decision, I believe. Coming back to it today felt good and right. 

"There All Along" 8x8 encaustic, oil, and image transfer on cradled birch panel. 

Monday, August 25, 2014

Walk Toward Me

“In your light I learn how to love. In your beauty, how to make poems. You dance inside my chest where no-one sees you, but sometimes I do, and that sight becomes this art.”
I ran across this quote by Rumi today, which is just lovely, as Rumi is apt to be, and it got me to thinking...I wonder, how many times have you heard the question, "Where does art come from?"  Have you thought about it?  Does it matter to you?   Do we think about these things too much?  Can the question ever really be answered?  Is your answer the only relevant answer--for you? 

I liken the Rumi quote to the Sanskrit word, namaste.  We've all heard it spoken; it's part of our popular culture now, but more than a greeting, the word namaste is saying that we recognize a spark of divinity in another person, and that that same spark resides within us.  Is art, perhaps, the physical manifestation of the witnessing of our divinity? 

"Walk Toward Me" 10x10 oil and cold wax on wood panel.