Tuesday, September 21, 2010


I'm really enjoying my painting these days. Getting out there and really trying to expand my color palette. Not so much that the pieces don't look like mine, only a bit more colorful and playful. It is still production mode, as I still have a few shows this year, along with a 3 month exhibit at the Angel Fire Visitors' Center, a show at the local gallery celebrating the 6 women who have been with the gallery for 7 years, which is scheduled for December. Then we've got a Lawrence family vacation in the works for the end of November, right after my last show.

But, I digress. I was talking about production versus creativity flow. Or at least that was the topic I thought I would address when I signed into blogger a few moments ago. What I wanted to talk about was how I relish my time away from merely producing for shows, the time when I can experiment and try new things. Really, for an artist, it is crucial to follow this step. Otherwise, I think the work could get stale....we've all seen artists who have been doing the exact same thing year after year, decade after decade, and some of it is just old and tired. I don't want that to happen to me and my work. It needs to grow. And in order to do so, I need time to experiment and try things. The last 2 winters I have been working with oils and alkyds--and I'm having fun with those and plan to continue more experimenting with them.

I also want to try some very different things--working with venetian plaster and more layering of texture along with some work in actual buon fresco. I find this avenue to be of interest for several reasons: 1) I wouldn't mind coming up with a secondary body of work that is not so New Mexico centric 2) I'd like to experiment with some more abstractions of the landscape and I think this might be easier to tackle in a medium I'm not so familiar with 3) As many different combinations of fixatives and varnishes I have tried--maybe I'll show you the complicated matrix of those combinations sometime!, I'm still not totally satisfied--and I really don't like the toxicity of the fixatives.. With the fresco, the pigment actually chemically bonds with the plaster so that it becomes part of the plaster--no need for sealing, if you don't want to. Although you can use a wax, if you like. But, all in all, much greener than what I am doing with the oil pastels. I really have no idea what will come of this/these ideas. I've been researching the tools I'll need for both of these things and have many carts filled with potential options. I'm excited about this. Nervous, too. Now that I've put it out there, will people ask how it is coming along? Will the work I produce be so differnt that people who like my other work, hate this other stuff? I have no idea. But, I know whatever I learn from these attempts will/should make me a better artist. At least I hope so. Please, wish me luck!! But, be patient, I'm not starting any of this until after my show in Dallas the first weekend in October!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Colorful Nights and other images

When I first started painting night time starry pictures, they were quite dark--like the night, duh! Then, I added more highlighting to the night skies. But that wasn't enough. I started going for a tad more color in the rest of the piece. And, then, this week, BANG, even more color in the night times (along with some extra punches of color in everything else I seem to be turning out!)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Do You Have a Favorite?

Today one of my collectors responded to an email I sent that had included about 9 new images of new art for his review. He said he and his wife like several of them a lot but they wanted to know which were my favorites before they decided. And, I was stumped. Because I don't really have favorites.

I'll be thrilled with a certain element of a piece or a solution to a mistake/technical difficulty. Or I'll like the way two new colors lay nicely next to each other, maybe with a hint of a third color--ones I haven't used together before. But, over all, I don't have favorites. I realize that certain pieces look good together when grouped together--for instance, these starker single structure pieces like the piece above.

So when my collector asked, I really couldn't answer right away. If I were the one acquiring a piece of art, I'd pick the one I liked the best--not caring a hoot if the artist liked it a lot or not. But, while my walls are chock full of art, I wouldn't put myself in the collector category. So, maybe this guy has something. Maybe he thinks that the piece (s) I like best will lead my work in that direction and he will have a "first off". I don't know--but now I have to sit and look at the images I sent him and try to figure out which one is my favorite---I'm thinking it is sort of like picking an ice cream flavor--there are definite ones I wouldn't order but many I'd be happy with. Which is why, on the very few occasions when I go to get an ice cream (I'm weird and only like ice cream when it is below 75 and above 45 degrees outside), I take forever trying to chose my flavor. Cuz I like a lot of them.

If you are an artist and read this blog, do you have favorite pieces of your own work? Do you know why you like them? Just curious.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Art Show Entry Fee

I've always just assumed the cost of applying to shows to be a cost of business. Daniel Grant's article in the Huffington Post points out some of the inequities of the art show world--if you are interested. Here's the link:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/daniel-grant/the-case-against-art-show_b_708624.html or click on the title of this blog post to go there!

Friday, September 10, 2010


I did it again. And I still can't quite believe I did. I cancelled a show. The Peoria Art Guild Fine Art show that takes place the last weekend in August. I feel relieved that I don't have to crunch as much to get ready for the show but I feel horribly guilty for cancelling. I've only cancelled 3 shows in the 11 years I've been doing shows. This one and 2 others. In both the other cases, I simply sold so well that I didn't have enough inventory to bother with the trip. In those cases, it was a last minute--well, last week, thing. I cancelled the Monday after the really killer shows. This time, there are still 2 weeks remaining but I'm low on inventory that I think will sell there--things with a more midwestern sensibility like my starker barns and such. And I'm itching to get back into the studio to create art, not just produce. I've got some big ideas I intend to explore this fall and winter. And I'll share with you both my success and failures. Promise. But, in the mantime, I'm gonna wallow in my guilt a little longer. Sorry, Peoria.