Monday, August 17, 2009

"Life's Illusion" - A working title

Finally having finished my latest work I feel relieved and pleased with the end result. Most of my work gives the impression of positive emotions, exploring the more upbeat aspects of human nature. I consider my work to be the visual respit needed when confronted with art designed to inflame and/or evoke other more intense emotional responses. However my new work wanted to be expressed in a less than positive light. The imagery demanded to be painted honestly. The male figure is portrayed as coveting what he believes to be perfection (possibilities of perfection include her as a woman or perhaps an artistic /musical ideal). This illusion is strengthened by her desire to extended the illusion for as long as possible. The clock above them is the constant reminder that all illusions have a time limit. Ultimately we see behind the masks we wear. Having been so blunt with the painting I do wish to state that while we all want to present to the world the "mask" of perfection, strength and confidence often our flaws are what set us apart and make us interesting. In new relationships (in whichever form they take) when the "honeymoon" phase ends is when the real fun begins!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Time, Heat and a Mural in Progress

It has been a long time since I left a post and for those of you who have been diligent in hounding me for more blogs and more art, I thank you. I have been inundated as of late with work, a soaring heat wave, the unending desire to procrastinate, and an imaginary muse who left on vacation for a cooler climate. I think her imaginary note said Arizona!

As for art...did you know that acrylic paint dries almost instantly in 90 degree weather let alone 112 degree. I have lost paint still in the tube!! Awe well, life goes on.
I am working on a mural designed to be as close a replica of Juarez Machado as I can make. I am taking my year off to explore alternate techniques and color palattes. I find this man's work to be both difficult and beyond inspiring. I am of the opinion that he should be considered one of the great "Masters" of our day. If you are unfamiliar with his work I am adding a link to my sidebar.

For other images of the mural in close up please scroll below this post. I will continue to add images of the mural in progress as the weather allows.

More blogging to follow...

A Mural In Progress

This mural is on my dining room wall. I want to assure any of those who are like myself when it comes to plagurism...I hate it. However, as a learning tool we all know that to learn from those you admire is a challenge and a gift. This painting is not for reproduction or for sale. Upon sale of my house we will paint over it (that is if we ever sell). I have learned a tremendous amount about scale, figurative expressionism, and color. These faces have been created almost entirely from the purple spectrum...a color I never would have associated with skin tone and now I can't get enough of. I have grown more in the few weeks I have been working on this mural than I have in the last year. I send my thanks to Juarez Machado and hope that he would be flattered with my attempts to learn at his canvas.

Friday, June 19, 2009

The 7 Hour Water Drop

The little drop on the vase started it all. Now I want water in every painting.

My Latest painting

It is finally finished. I started this painting about 8 weeks ago. Once I got the underpainting finished I couldn't for the life of me figure out what to do next. The imagery had no meaning for me. It was just a vase with (at the time)some very abstract flowers. After reading several other blogs by various artists I realized the problem: it HAS to have meaning for me. So I thought...and thought...and thought. Still nothing. Eventually I figured out that it wasn't about flowers at all but balance. Understanding that for all we focus on the outside, the inside needs the same attention.

I met a fellow in Fremont who saw even more than I did. For me, that equates success.

As for the painting challenges: as the painting evolved, my mother had the great idea of adding water. Well seven hours later I figured out how to paint a water drop that looks like water. 12 hours after that I figured out how to make a puddle...8 hours after that I figured out how paint reasonably realistic water inside the vase allowing for a greater recognition of depth. Bottom line, even if the painting doesn't go over well, I learned a lot. Isn't that the point after all?

This is just a quick little aside to Hamish Campbell. I have gone to your blog and tried to write some comments but for some reason it won't let me. If you have an email address could you post it or just email me?

Friday, June 5, 2009

Finding the right art printer

When I started out in the art business 8 years ago I thought that reproducing my images would be a snap. Of all the trials and tribulation that I have been through, reproduction has been my nemesis, until now.

I have finally found the ultimate printer. His name is Steve Strickland and he owns and One site is geared for the artist and reproductions while the other is geared toward the retail and commercial markets interested in purchasing art. (By the way he is interested in abstract artists for his genesis stable)

Back to the point; Steve has a wonderful eye and fantastic equipment. He just did prints for me on his new 12 color printer and they are amazing. He uses the best paper and canvas material. To say that I have finally found someone who listens to me and creates a quality product is an understatement.

If you are an artist who would like further info just let me know.

Thanks Steve for all your hard work.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Other Works

"My Name Is Cleo"
Acrylic on Canvas

I have recently discovered that anything I paint has to have some kind of lesson of self discovery. I am currently working on a piece without any figurative elements. I have been staring at it for a couple weeks wondering why I couldn't finish it. Then it hit me, it was just flowers in a vase with no other purpose than to look pretty. While there is nothing wrong with this generally speaking, somewhere along the way it has become a problem for me.

I include lots of pattern in my work because, while I paint, it encourages me to think about my own patterns of behavior. What do you see and feel when you look at the painting? (I am adding other recent works as well)I would really love to know. By the way there is no right or wrong answers. It could be that you just like the colors or perhaps you don't like them all? That is okay too.

"Peace Through Music"
Acrylic on canvas

"Peace Through Chaos"
Acrylic on canvas

"Take a Peek..."
Acrylic on canvas

My latest painting has sold!

Under normal circumstances I don't get particularly attached to my paintings. I usually get my ideas from my dreams. This process creates a sense that I am just a conduit for creativity so the work I create is not "mine". When I am finished with a painting I am excited to get it out into the world because the person whom is was created for needs to find it. This painting however was my favorite, but he went to a wonderful couple who were so excited to have him as part of their collection.

Well, with him gone I guess it's time to create "Juggling Life's Illusions III".

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Fremont Saturday Market!!!!

I have been in the art business in one form or another for 8 years. I have tried to make a living at juried art festivals, consignment with local galleries, sales reps who swear they will make me a million and last but not least, wholesale trade shows and internet venues. I believe in diversification. However, the expense of most of these avenues far out ways the benefits. I always seem to come back to my roots, the local farmers/craft markets. My favorite by far is the Fremont Market.

Perhaps it is because I was born in Berkeley CA and the feel of Fremont is the same. Perhaps it is just the joyful crowd out absorbing the sun. What I do know is that this crowd loves to support it's local talent. They love to find hidden treasures and talk art for hours. I have sold my work at some of the top retail shows in the country and I find the people in Fremont more educated on art and eager to buy then in any other venue.

So to all those Fremont shoppers and art enthusiasts, I want to say from the bottom of my heart, Thank you for your support and knowledge!!!!!

See you next Sunday!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

And so it begins....

In the last week I have been inundated with questions, comments and emails about blogging; Why am I not on facebook; do you twitter?; catch me on myspace; I had no real idea what all this meant or why I needed to join the social network generation. I don't text, I barely email and my webpage reflects exactly how little I know. But with the encouragement of a dear friend and fellow artist, Connie Delavergne, I have stepped out from beneath the sheltering umbrella of ignorance.

Having attempted to research other artist's blogs I came up nearly empty handed. This could be due to the technical ignorance of most artists (I think I am projecting here) but more likely it is because I have no idea how to search for them. Admitting this, I am open to link suggestions for other artists (and inspirational venues).

This blog's purpose it to document the artistic journey. Art to me is all about self discovery and the general human condition. Most people who look/buy my art want to know all about how I came up an idea, what was the struggle and what is my process. Since the answers can change and evolve I thought the time had come to enter this digital age.

I love feedback and lively discussions so please feel free to comment.