About Me

My photo
Documenting a period in my development that could become pivotal

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Spring Leaves in Hail Storm

"Spring Leaves in Hail Storm" is layers upon layers of acrylic paint on a cradled wood board 5" x 7" x 1 1/2". I started this painting after our Santiam River fishing trip and worked it entirely over today outdoors under a patio cover during hail storm. This is for sale $90 plus shipping.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Sketches On South Santiam to Studio Experiment

"Healthy Trees, South Santiam" is acrylic on cradled board 7"x 5" x 1/2". Including the cradled board box and sketches for sale for $90 plus shipping cost. Sometimes it is stretching to try a new approach. Usually I begin a painting on the river trying for the most direct emotional response. On this one I planned in detail how I would paint it in the studio. At home I first mixed the colors ahead of time and then painted using memory in my muscles. I covered my eyes with a scarf so I saw minimal placement but not color. When I peeked at it I should have stopped. I reverted to my old way of tailoring the colors and shapes in a journey without a map.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Invasive Ivy on South Santiam River, Sweet Home, Oregon

Saturday my husband and I fished between Foster Dam and Sweet Home. We were in our drift boat going down river. My husband lost a steelhead before the island. Near the take out on river left just before the park I could see two dead trees strangled by ivy. The painting, "Ivy Strangles Trees" is acrylic on a cradled board 12" x 9" x 1 3/4". This one is for sale for $99.

Tomorrow I will post painted abstractions from my memory of healthy trees on the South Santiam River.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Letting Go Abstraction from Seal Rock Tide Pool

"Abstraction of Sea Anemone Tide Pool " is acrylic on museum wrapped canvas 3 feet by 2 feet by 1 1/2 inches deep. For sale $400
I worked myself up emotionally to paint from a minimal pencil sketch done on location. I tried to go back and photograph this area but the tide was coming in on a very stormy 40 mile an hour rain storm. The coral color is my own emotional poetic license. This painting is a break through for me because I need to work quickly like this to express the emotions and feelings of being at Seal Rock.
In comparison to the photographs, painting is a much more immediate and direct form of creating communicative pictures. Comparing them for value is not possible because it is like comparing apples and oranges - a subjective judgement.

Beyond the Landscape and "en Plein Air"

The ocean pictures here, as if painted, are photographs taken at Seal Rock, Oregon through a window pounded by heavy rain. I want to be like a window and paint my vision. So back to the studio for a painting of my memory. I wonder how it will compare with the photographs. The photograph failed to show all the color I saw.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Forty Miles Per Hour Winds at Seal Rock

"Forty Mile an Hour Winds" is acrylic and interference colors on a wood cradled square box 12" by 1 1/2" deep. For sale $150
"Forty Miles an Hour Winds" was almost "en Plein Air" I steped outside for a little before returning to a window on the storm was not painted outside in the storm. I painted the wind, the high winds Wednesday morning on location before breakfast. We were near Seal Rock, Oregon.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Ebb Tide at Seal Rock, Oregon

"Ebb Tide at Seal Rock" is acrylic on a 12" and 1 1/2 " deep square wood cradled box. For sale $150
My husband took this picture of me painting on the beach in front of where we were staying. We shared Monday and Tuesday an enchanted two days with blogger "Rain" and her husband. We hope to have another shared retreat soon but a day longer.

Friday, April 18, 2008

"A Veil of Spring Flowers"

April 20th I made the final resolution for both concept and painting. I have made changes all over to drape the wild flowers like a veil over the rocks.

" A Gown of Spring Flowers" is acrylic on canvas 16" x 20" , for sale $350

"A Gown of Spring Flowers" is a painting that kept defying resolution. I think I would have it and there was a voice asking why did you do this. It doesn't have the whimsy of the two other 16" x 20" painted on our trip to Arizona. I took it to the Albany Group to share yesterday. Shirley Hilts thought it just needed a little transition. Well I worked this morning to give the rocks more dimensionality and I tried to make the flowers flow over the landscape like a silk veil. The eroded Colorado river bank had a face and then it came to me. Mother Earth cracked and pebble pocked was dressed in a royal veil. This fantasy was what I was doing all along and hadn't admitted it. Now it has a whimsical concept like the other two paintings - "Jagged Mountain Combing a Head of Cloud Hair" and "Reed Dragon - The Protector" To see all three paintings look at my blog gallery http://widlerwenzelarizona.blogspot.com/

Thursday, April 17, 2008

My Development Since Graduation from Portland State University

Painting on Ritner Creek 1990, photographed by "Rain" of the Rainy Day Thoughts Blog

Yesterday I wrote about what my art education meant to me. It is more difficult to honestly say how I am doing with that education. The selling was better years ago though the art making is very satisfying to me otherwise. My status as an artist in my community is ranked as a good artist. I see the main body of my work as being sincere, honest and unique. My craft skills are good enough for my needs. I do need to continue to learn and develop. As an artist citizen I am a very giving person. I am also frustrated with the groups I have been involved in. I know the groups have problems but I have not brought the skills out of me to influence the direction of these groups. In the Albany, Corvallis area I have pulsated between being out there in the community and being cloistered in my home. I have taught classes and several workshops at the Linn Benton Community Center and other public venues. I am not what the students want. They want hard fast rules so they can instantly make a painting like their favorite artist. They say they don't like my work meaning they don't want to paint like me. And I don't want them to paint like me too. I want students who want to experience all the steps of the learning process -students who want the joy of discovering what works for them. I am much more happy as a facilitator than a teacher. I have been a show committee chair for our art guild and I found businesses willing to hang our art. I started educating the business community about how and why they should be supportive of local artists. But my intention has gone by the way side and now the encouragement for the arts has been replaced by dividing the membership into not yet artists and elite exhibiting artists. I don't believe these labels are true or helpful in encouraging people. The big thing at the guild has become selling and not sharing all their true feelings in paint. I have tried for years to shape the direction of the community but I am attacked with hidden insults and rejections. This morning I am meeting with a new group forming in Albany. We are painting outdoors on location at a local nursery.
I wish to add that I still support and am a member of the Corvallis Art Guild and the Corvallis Art Center. I have hope, with the increasing membership, they will become more open minded. My statement and sample piece of art is posted on the Guild's web site tour of artists. http://corvallisartguild.org/ Although I am not looking to show my art work in the Art Center this year or next, I will again apply for showing 2010. I already have exhibits lined up for 2008 and 2009.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

How my art education at Portland State University has effected my life

"Dawn's Rays Splash Cattail Cove State Park, Arizona"2008,
water media on cotton rag Arches watercolor paper, 14" x 22"
For sale $200

For something like the thirteenth time, I tackled this painting begun March 13 on the pet walking area at Cattail Cove State Park, Arizona. Every session I tried to approach the under painting as a spring board to abstracting from my memory of the early morning sunshine on palo verti. It started out as water soluble crayon and then it was watercolor and now it is acrylic on paper. Today as in the past sessions I was painting my own excitement in returning to Arizona.

Then later in the day I received a news letter from the Portland State University Art Alumni and Friends Committee. In addition to promoting community among the alumni and asking for support in the form of scholarship donations for art students, President Pro Tem James Minden said he will be asking alumni for profiles and he will be particularly interested in how our art education at PSU has effected our lives.

First, I must say I am so grateful for my time with PSU Art Professors. Their examples give me confidence for my intuitive journey. When I am painting and when I participate in community, I have them at my side and I hear their words like they spoke them yesterday. In 1965 Frederick Heidel said "I hope you have a rich development." "Don't make exercises:Make a complete expressive work from every painting. Keep your work for a long time to see your development." Florence Saltzman said, "Painting is a part of my everyday doings. Painting is a language, a way of living." Richard Muller gave his students confidence saying, "You have an aesthetic sense and it is valid." He mentored me in the beginning of the student run White Gallery and instilled the idea that an artist is a citizen making bridges to other disciplines and the community. Professor Ray Grimm gave me an appreciation of ceramic craft as being a true art form where artists can have a very rich development. Dr. Kimbrell taught that through history there were two kinds of painters - one based their forms on drawing and the other type made form by a painterly use of color. I aspire to be painterly. Thank you Dr. Kimbrell I can weather criticism that doesn't understand or accept painterly work. Professor Glasier of Basic Design made me think of the many possible ways to be expressive artfully. We talked about how we moved from point to point in our daily tasks and at play. We could understand living movements as an art form. I am greatful to Colescott for his social consciousness and search for his roots which I appreciated very much when I found my own roots. Colescott's energy in setting assignments for figure painting was my guide in facilitating a figure drawing group in Bellingham meeting over a 17 year period - the group continues two decades after my leaving. Prasch was caring and made me feel my work was important. Frederic Littman was like a monk in that he lived with the bare essentials. More and more I do away with material frills in my life to keep on painting. He said, "When we have started a piece with a model and the model is nolonger before us then the truely creative part of making art may begin." Whether I start with a model or paint outdoors I am aware of these two chapters in my creative process.

In Muller's class we wrote a paper about our involvement in an art object. I found this project so rewarding to my understanding that I have self-published for my family another involvement in another family art object. I have made many observations connecting our vase to world history sharing art ideas and how we as a family have and are making a small step towards healing and peace.

When I was at Portland State the art faculty had taken to heart the words of John Fitzgerald Kennedy. "If art is to nourish the roots of our culture, society must set the artist free to follow his vision where ever it takes him." At Portland State JFK's words meant learning to make goals for our work and not the undisciplined "Laissez Faire" typical of some other schools of that period. When JFK was assassinated Muller was a little late to class. He passed out our papers on our involvement in an art form and expressed in a few words how shaken he was over Kennedy's being shot. He worried about what this event would mean to higher education. And of course art would become a lower priority.

I was lucky to receive instruction at Portland State College when the future for art and its importance was strong. Portland State College, not yet a University at that time, just started its first graduate school - the School of Social Work. The Dean of Social Work, Dr. Gordon Hearn, was also a watercolorist and he understood the wholeness of our being needed art to be complete. His art major daughter gave me an almost unused sketch book of Gordon's which I use.

When I was a caregiver for my mother, art was the bridge that connected us in our daily practice of making a painting. Art can play a significant roll in the aging process and really a miracle that goes unnoticed too much of the time. I am designing art for the last stages of life.

Posting art on the Internet is a bridge for meeting and making friends all over the world. It is a bridge to making connections in my own personal seeing and thinking. Thank you Portland State University Art Department.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Spring Wildflowers at McDonald State Forest, Corvallis, Oregon

Sunday my husband and I enjoyed the warm spring day by going for a walk in McDonald State Forest. Monday I painted my abstraction from my feelings while walking.

"McDonald Forest April Flowers"
Acrylic on museum wraped canvas
36" x 12" x 1 1/2"

Photograph is by Don Wenzel. I am very proud of my husband who just received an award for his many years and hours of volunteer work. He is now the Association of Northwest Steelheaders 2007 Hall of Fame honored member.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Invitation to my blog of Arizona Paintings 2008

My new blog is a gallery of paintings that I did on our March trip to Arizona. I wanted to view them all together in the order I painted them to see how they flowed. Your are welcome to browse just for the fun of it. Although it isn't my primary goal to make something for sale, if you want to buy, I am willing to part with them. The act of making them is about 90% of my involvement. Prices are listed at the first listed near the end of the posts. http://widlerwenzelarizona.blogspot.com/
"Rain" has linked to my new blog and has written about her many years of living with my paintings in her blog http://rainydaythought.blogspot.com/

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Orange Moon Rise

The watercolor on paper, "Orange Moon Rise" (12" x 9") was begun at Arizona Alamo State Park. It is a watercolor on paper 12" x 9". One evening the moon, very large and orange, was rising as the sun was setting. This painting is mostly memory remembering the uneven detail of the orange glowing moon and the deep blue of the sky. I couldn't capture it in a photograph and required layer upon layer of paint.

"Pebbles Bathed in Moon Light" is watercolor on 120 pound Arches 20" x 16". Both paintings are for sale $100 each plus postage.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Abstracting Memories and Inspirational Souvenirs

"Reed Sunset" is acrylic on museum wrapped canvas 24" x 36" x 1 1/2". For sale $500
I worked not from photographs but from memories of Tucson sunsets I painted in 1965 and of recent Arizona memories. First I covered the canvas with bright sunset colors and left it for several hours. Then I came back working in considerably more reds, magenta, white and yellows. Last I did the reed-like strokes recalling the reeds I watched from our motor coach. I remembered enjoying the reeds in front of the last glow of the sunset in a dark motor coach because we were conserving our power not having an electrical hook up. There were sounds from the nesting birds but not frogs. Later when we camped in a different location on the lake we heard frogs around sunset time.
I noticed as I was painting that I was unintentionally but pleasantly influenced by an installation in my studio. An earlier post is about the little installation of rocks I did in response to Martha Marshall's challenge to manipulate one of her abstracts.

Monday, April 07, 2008

I am featured in Paul Viel's "Art for the Soul" Blog

For a statement and details on this painting click on the link.
I am thrilled to be a part of Paul Viel's "Art for the Soul" blog. http://artforthesoul.blogspot.com/ Paul is a writer, passionate poet and photogrphic digital artist traveling in his and his wife's Winnebaggo Sightseer - the"Musemobile".

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Pebble from Cebolia Camp

"Primal Pebble"
I picked up a cool pebble in our Cebolia camp.
If she could see and speak, she could tell us an epic story.
Rounded and polished in the Colorado's ancient glacial floods,
her surface is blackened by air and sunlight.
The shiny black conceals a heart of hot iron colors from a fiery birth.
Ages ago sister rocks were visited by native hunters
who carved through the black to warm life colors.
Prayerfully imaging their memories, maps and dreams
the natives made the blackened rock a character in our story.

"Primal Pebble" is acrylic on canvas 48" x 24" for sale $500.

To connect with a tour of spiritual painting click here.http://umbrellapaintingjournal.blogspot.com/2008/01/modular-frame-3.html#links

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Finishing my last paintings of our trip

At the camp grounds in Canyon of Fire Stated Park, Nevada, just before sunset I painted watercolor and dilute acrylic medium on a lumpy textured gesso and absorbent ground on cradled hardboard 7" x 5" x 3/4". Then looking at the painting at home I saw giants risen from their rest. The painting was completed bring out the emotion with acrylic paints.

Fleeing Homeward

Although I took two canvases like this one 48" x 24", I did not complete either one. I was saving them for the last leg of our journey which was covered so quickly we didn't stop to paint. But as we started back the weather was predicted to be snow in the high passes on Friday. So we hurried past some beautiful landscape. On Thursday, March 27, we drove for 12 hours solid with a short stop for dinner. "Fleeing Homeward Past Walker Lake" was my first painting done at home.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Paintings for my husband

"Sequaro one mile from exit 52 E between Yuma and Tucson", watercolor and ink 9" x 12"
Mittery Lake, 14" x 20" watercolor, gouache, pencil and ink