Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Art Workshop: October 2014 Marshfield, MA

I held a Making it Fine Art Workshop in Marshfield, MA. sponsored by the North River Arts Society.

There was a Friday night demo in pastel and I worked on an oil Sat and Sun.

It was an amazing group of artists and our workshop was held in an historic building occupied by the Arts Society. We experimented, had small to large successes some remarkable breakthroughs! Great plans were made for going forward in our works.

It looks like I'll be back in May for classes again. Can't wait!

Thank you for the fond memories and your many kindnesses.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Grateful Notices: Yellows at the Creek IV

Yellows at the Creek
Oil on canvas, 48 x 48 inches
Private collection, Houston, TX

This is an imaginary scene, first made as a pair of pastels. I wanted a composition that was a fall color surround with a glowing stream. In some earlier versions there was a whiter bit of sky at the top, but here I decided the stream would be the only source of bright light. As the oil proceeded I noticed a nice effect coming of the brush. It was something that created a soft surface in the grasses, so I kept with it and flattened the background trees a bit more. Still, the overall effect is softer than the other oil versions, more pastel-like and it accentuates the warm colors enveloping everything.

Pardon the less than optimal reproduction here. Now I have all my artworks shot professionally and the difference well worth the effort.

This painting was purchased as a birthday gift, a great honor.
Thank you!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Video: One Year in 40 Seconds

something nice....

One Year in 40 Seconds
Eirik Solheim

More information
You'll learn how the video was made and get links to download the HD-version and all the images.

Art Heals and Hopes: WW I and the Berlin Wall Anniversaries

There were two extraordinary anniversaries this month, World War I and the fall of the Berlin Wall. These were great human tragedies of a size that is difficult to imagine.

Both of these events were creations of men, failed ideas that affected millions of people, destroying lives, families and entire countries.

Berlin's Wall of Light
To commemorate the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, the artists Christopher and Marc Bauder created a border of lights called the “Lichtgrenze.”
by: NY Times, Erik Olsen, Nov. 8, 2014

WW I Memorial at the Tower of London, England
Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red, marking one hundred years since the first full day of Britain's involvement in the First World War. Created by ceramic artist Paul Cummins, with setting by stage designer Tom Piper, 888,246 ceramic poppies will progressively fill the Tower's famous moat over the summer. Each poppy represents a British military fatality during the war.

NBC video by Brian Williams
More information from the Tower of London website

Today we can see these catastrophes in a new way.
These historic dates are commemorated with artists as the creators and a new army of people to build the tributes.

From the waste and wreckage is a hopeful and beautiful vision for a better world.

John Steinbeck said,:
“All war is a symptom of man's failure as a thinking animal.”

Followed by the British politician Tony Benn's quote,:
“All war represents a failure of diplomacy.”

Here is a poster by Jean-Michel Folon that I will forever remember. Perhaps it is the answer.
Communication is the Beginning of Understanding

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Video: Blind Artist for Last 25 Years Making Great Artworks, Inspiring!

Artist Sargy Mann has been blind for the last 25 years

From the BBC, 24 October 2014
Video journalists: James Dowd & Matt Margrett

Sargy Mann has been painting all of his professional life, first as a teacher and later as a professional artist. In his mid-30s he developed cataracts on both eyes, eventually leading to total blindness. He continued to paint.

Twenty-five years later, Sargy's work is highly sought-after by collectors, with paintings regularly selling for upward of £50,000 (US$80,000).

He spoke to BBC News about his life and gave an insight into how he continues to work.

From the video:

"I had to sort of reinvent painting for myself. It seems sort of more or less impossible but if you're just determined to keep going, you know you get used to that.

Because if your subject is your own experience, then as long as you're having an experience you've got a subject. And that turns out to be true even into total blindness."

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Grateful Notices: Autumn Verticals commissioned oil on canvas

Commissioned work:
Autumn Verticals
Oil on canvas, 32 x 40 inches
Private collection, Seattle, WA

I always enjoy commission work. I am usually working with a new client that obviously likes what I do, so my job is to do my best work and thrill myself. If I am happy the client will likely feel the same way.

A commission is the opportunity to go further in any variety of ways, using a number of strategies to create a great, new work. More or less complex? More monochromatic or open the color up? Find ways to increase the drama? The studio is full of possibilities.

The client and I are excited about the possible outcome, that finished work on the wall. The entire process is a delicious one for me. A bit of risk on the high wire and the freedom to make something wonderful.

I did a larger version a year ago. This client wanted something close to that look but allowed me to try new things. So this time it's a bit of the aspens or birches without as many of the lighter tree trunk colors. The foreground trees are separated from the background in this version as well. It is less realistic, but this increased the contrast and depth. This separation freed the colors as well, allowing the vertical trunks to be rendered in a variety of deeper blues, purples, aquas and greens. The colors are almost like the paints sitting on the studio palette - a delight to see.

It was a bit sad to have it leave the studio where it had been entertaining me for weeks.

Thank you for placing it your lovely home!