Saturday, 25 November 2017

Loving the Tribe

There's a special connection between art makers; a connection akin to a tribe.  In the tribe, one feels a spark, a mutual understanding with the other tribe members what it is to share a creative path.  I have the best discussions with other artists.  It's also why I enjoy listening to the Savvy Painter podcasts sometimes while I paint.  
They are great while I'm working on my mini wood blocks, because I paint them responsively, not too much cerebral stuff in them.  When I need to think I cant listen to any podcasts or music (only exception is birdsong).  It feels good to know there's others out there all around the world working away on their own creative paths, going through similar ups and downs as me.  I love the tribe!  

Dec 8th I've been invited to attend the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria's  December meeting.  woohoo! It's a great little public art gallery very enthusiastically supported out here in Victoria...cant wait to see what the other members will bring, it's a show & tell.  ...feel like I meet some of the tribe :)

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

still painting in Victoria

Here I am in Victoria for the next few weeks; happy to find a little space in the days to do a bit of painting.   The first couple of days I was tired from traveling and fighting jetlag, but now I'm getting into the rhythm of the days here.
Yesterday I set up my paints in my mother-in-law's sun-room.  It's unheated in there but we had beautiful sunshine in the afternoon, which warmed it up enough to paint while Gma puttered in the garden trimming her hydrangea heads.

On the weekend Holly & Jeff picked me up and we wandered along Ella beach in Sooke, hunting for treasures. For Holly, that's beach glass and interesting driftwood pieces that she turns into cute Xmas crafts. For me it's inspiration for my mini wood block paintings.  I cant wait to share a table with her at a Xmas craft/art fair next Thursday; so fun to get the opportunity to hang with my girl and sell our goodies! 

Friday, 3 November 2017

fitting art-making into life

The Soul Know's - oil on wood 20x20
$600 - on view at Frameworks
Ideally I love painting in my studio with a few canvas's on the go at the same time, all in various states of flux.  The process of going from one to the other like 'a bee in a meadow' suits my flow, and encourages my voice, best.  I learn the best stuff in these moments alone, asking questions, finding my way and solving problems within each work.   BUT, this way of working only suits me when my life is ordered and has a routine, as it requires large blocks of  un-interrupted working time.

For me, art making is such an itch that needs scratching,  even when I cant be in my studio like usual, I want to make things.  I mean after happens, doesn't it?  I love taking part in family activities. 
In these small time frames, while visiting or hanging out with family or friends, my art making takes on quite a different rhythm.   I switch to small projects, like the mini wood block paintings...they're are a good fix, letting me enjoy art-making and taking part in life too. 
They take concentration, but somehow, it's possible to work on them with other things going on around me.  I feel grateful to have a way to make my art fit my life.  I used to do  needlework when my kids were little, fitting it into small moments between naps or children's telly.  It's sort of the same way with the little paintings now.  I fit them into life's busier times. 

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Art Trip to Venice

gallery cafe booth with a view
Last week I took an art trip with my friend Trudy, to Venice. I had never been before. As a young girl, when I'd heard about Venice, my thoughts of a city with canals for streets seemed quite impossible, and so in my mind it was kind of like a fantasy to me. Perhaps this is why I was swept away by it's magic. It's a stunning city.  Venice in October is perfect for getting out and about, not too hot, but not cold either.  There are less tourists in the fall than in the spring and summer months, so that's a bonus.
shop window on a canal
What impressed me about the city more than anything else is the emphasis on art & culture.  It's everywhere!  In the architecture, the food, the music, the people(fashion) and of course the art galleries, of which we took in as much as we could.
The Venice Biennial is on and so we saw some of Britain's contribution, Damien Hirst's exhibit titled:  'Treasures from the Wreck of the Unbelievable'...a massive effort of inventiveness, both freakish and beautiful. 
The Gallerie dell' Accademia transported us to Byzantine & medieval Venice through the renaissance and baroque periods.  Most paintings from these era's are huge canvas's or panel's or even mosaic's.  Commissioned by the wealthy or by churches to adorn palaces & places of worship, they are huge in scale.  Some are allegorical, others depict scenes from important occasions;  most tell us how life was lived in Venice during these times. (made me glad I live in this century though) If I had to choose a favorite Italian painter from the academy gallery, it would be Bellini, so much emotion in his work.
Joaquin Sorolla - Mending the Sail
Felice Casorati -The Young Maidens
We went to the modernist art gallery Ca Pesaro, to see works by Klimpt, Sorolla, Rodin, among others, and found joy in discovering some modernist Italian artist's whom we had not even known about before: Casorati & Bosioni to name a few

 In the same gallery, a whole floor features 82 portraits by David Hockney of the artist's friends, family and aquaintances; done in 3 day sittings, painted in garish acrylic, all sitting in the same chair with the same background.  
Here's a piccy of me sitting in the chair ...a mock-up of the setting for the benefit of museum visitors taking photos. ha ha.

I hope to do a body of work inspired by my time in Venice. As of yet, ideas are only percolating, we'll see where it goes.

Friday, 22 September 2017

ART AFTER DARK September 29th

Intention - oil on panel, 24 x 18 - $600
Very happy to be a featured artist showing my new works this Friday Sept 29th for ART AFTER DARK at Kingston Frameworks this year.   I'm looking forward to greeting friends and clients on this fun evening... and...if the weatherman is correct it looks like it will be a beautiful evening for an art crawl.  Come and enjoy art in downtown Kingston this Friday evening.  The galleries and studio's are all open to the public for this event between 7-10pm.  My new paintings will remain in the show at Frameworks until the end of October. 

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Looking Up

Looking Up - oil on wood - 48x24 - $1500
Oh September, here you are! Cool temps in the air, a host of activities going on. 
My studio practice, fit between trips and visits and weekend jaunts is still a calm in the storm when I get to hang out there.  I am liking working on some large pieces with a contemplative layered approach.  I will show some of these new pieces at ART AFTER DARK at Kingston Frameworks, Sept 29th 7-10pm.

xoxo love these lil sweeties xoxoxo
I'm getting excited to see my grandkiddies real soon :)  Porter airlines begins direct flights from Ottawa to Fredericton on September 9th, so yours truly is booked shortly after...great news as previously Air Canada only offered inconvenient flight times at a more expensive price too.  I hope to take advantage of this new service from Porter...A LOT!

A good friend and I have booked an art trip to Venice, Italy for October!   Woohooo!!  I'm over the moon as I have never been before, and it is somewhere I've always wanted to visit for the history, beauty and art. I'm hoping to take away some new inspiration / direction for my own practice, maybe a series, don't really know yet. Lots to look forward to!

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Dive Right In

Big Love - oil on wood - 20x20 - $600
 When starting a new idea for painting, diving right in is the only way for me.  I may have a bunch of preconceived ideas about what I want,  but if I dwell on it for long, it can be like throwing blocks across my path.  I prefer the spontaneous energy in just getting going...choosing a palette,  laying in paint in a bold and decisive manner with the intent of getting what I want.  Of course I don't always get it, but occasionally something happens on the canvas that I hadn't planned, and a truth is born. 

 works in progress in my studio
Somehow starting in this exciting way in the beginning stages leads me to the right balance of energy upon which to build the rest of the painting. After this excitement bit, I slow down to consider the aesthetic I am after.  What areas can I simplify to keep my intent?  What areas are just noise?  There are choices about wiping out (sometimes huge!) areas that I have spent a long time laying in.  wierd. and funny. that language of art. 
My recent work is going to be featured at ART AFTER DARK at Kingston Frameworks this year.  The evening art crawl is on September 29th, 7-10pm .  My new works will be on display there until Oct 31st.  
After the work leaves Kingston Frameworks it will be hung at a solo exhibition at JAMES BRETT COIFFURE  Gardiners Road from Nov 6- Dec 31.