Friday, March 27, 2009



This is a painting I did in oil about a year ago.  I haven't done a lot of flower paintings because usually I get so caught up in the details, that I'm not happy with them.  But in this painting, I painted just the very basics.  I admire other artists who are able to capture the subtle nuances of flowers.  I'm just not one of them.  

It's that way with my other work too.  In landscape art, if I start recording too much, I feel the painting isn't me for some reason.  I prefer the distilled version.  I enjoy capturing the vague impression of the landscape.  To me, this feels real - authentic.

It's taken a lot of time and tons of paint to come up with this final analysis of my work.  I've only come to this conclusion because now I can look back more objectively.  Painting the very essence of a still life or landscape requires more thought for me because it requires more editing and planning.

On a different note, I'm thrilled to have received a Lemonade Award from Kathleen Krucoff.  She's an amazing glass artist and if you haven't checked out her blog yet, you're in for a treat.  The only problem I'm having is downloading the badge (a requirement) onto my site.  So I'll have to wait for one of my twenty-somethings to help me!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Finding One's Authentic Voice

Strolling Along

 My work is about to take a detour.  I've always been in search of my true voice and it's been a long, winding path.  Trying to get in touch with one's authentic artist voice is a push and pull of learning from others and listening to oneself.  Sometimes the listening to oneself is the most difficult.  

Being objective and critical of one's work takes some distance and time.  It's a matter of knowing what works and what doesn't .  When it doesn't, I feel it's a waste of time and energy.  But in fact, all those "mistakes" are how I've learned.  And all those "mistakes" have shown me where I want to go.  

I'll be talking more about where I want to go in future posts.  In the meantime, I'm taking an on-line course with Deborah Paris.  She's a gifted artist and an amazing teacher.  She knows how to pare down compositions and paint in a truly luminous style.  I'm learning so much from taking this class.  But  I don't want my work to look exactly like hers (which is beautiful and unique).  I want my work to look like mine.   

Friday, March 13, 2009

Studio Move

Basement Studio

I thought everyone might enjoy seeing my studio, since I LOVE seeing other artist's studios.  It's better than looking at a decorator magazine to me.  I just find it fascinating to see how other artists work.  The above photo is my basement studio.  I no longer work here, just mostly store stuff, i.e., canvases, completed paintings, paintings waiting to dry, extra paint, etc.  I also wash my brushes in a small sink down here.  But I won't show that.  It's too messy.

This room used to be kind of a family room at one time.  We live in a cottage/bungalow type house built in 1924.  It's a Sears home.  At one time the kids watched TV down here.  There was even a fish aquarium.  When my kids went off to college, I claimed the space for my studio.  My husband installed spotlights, speakers for the stereo and various other things for me.  It's a great space and has everything I need.  Except natural light.

So I moved my french easel upstairs.  I thought I would just try it.  It was meant to be a temporary thing.  That was a year ago and I'm still upstairs in my light-filled little sunroom.  It's much smaller, but I find it so much more enjoyable.  

My Current Studio

It's also closer to the kitchen for my many refills of instant coffee.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Last Light, Low Light

Last Light

This painting has been on and off my easel for the last two weeks.  Every time I think I'm done with it, I change my mind.  I actually signed it yesterday.  I think I just wanted to stop the questioning.  

The odd thing about this painting is that it looks good from a distance.  But if I stand close to it and really observe all the details, the doubts come flooding in.  One evening I was talking about this painting with my husband.  I usually talk to him about things like this when I simply can't gain perspective.  It's amazing what he comes up with from his non-artistic background.  He said, "It should be hung in a place where there's low light".  

I think he's right.  Shouldn't the lighting be taken into consideration when hanging certain paintings?