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Documenting a period in my development that could become pivotal

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Digesting Diane Hoff-Rome's workshop on intuitive process

One of the tendencies I have at workshops like Diane Hoff Rome's is to let myself be influenced to paint like the instructor. Last week at the workshop some of my work looked like Frankenthaler and some like Hoff-Rome so I have been looking at some of my older work to see if I have a way to employ her process in my own development. After all my background is working intuitively. This is a painting done around 1988 and I am wondering how I have lost this kind of movement and spontaneity. Certainly her suggestions will help me get into my own creativeness more of the time. My next projects will be painting outdoors over some old paintings. I am starting some new paintings of Bond Butte Pond and the best one will go in The Everlasting Valley exhibit.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Being focused

Our computer crashed and I must find new ways to share my journey until it is fixed. This picture is a web cam picture and I am wondering if I can share my work by just holding it up. Here I am holding a duck that I have been knitting to donate to a hospital.
When I post what I will do in the future sometimes that helps me focus. My celebrating volunteers series is not going well at all. this afternoon I am going to start a brand new painting of Mother of the Woodlot and her grandson releasing a fish in Bond Pond.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Tango series at Toni Acock's mineral painting class

"Bride and Groom Tango" is mineral china painting on a porcelain tile 3 1/2' x 2 3/4". It is my first China painting. My teacher is Toni Acock of Corvallis, Oregon. She opens her studio twice a week. Today I painted three more tiles.
Her class is a fun cheerful group and Toni is very generous.

I am making these China paintings to give as gifts.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Hoff-Rome work shop brings out Helen Frankenthaler in me

Hoff Rome compared this exploratory exercise to a Helen Frankenthaler.

Mixed Media on Gouache paper purchased in China. 10" x 7 1/2" Completed near the end of our full day. We were immersed in the intuitive creative process. I was getting to work outside my comfort zone reaching farther from the landscape and farther from previously programed expectations. We were starting with the panoramic view of her studio in Monroe, Oregon. We stepped outside the realm of painting objects towards displaying our inner movements of our non-dominate hand.
I have painted in the company of Hoff-Rome many times but never fully trusted the importance of working with my non-dominate hand and surely I will now more easily recapture the flow I so often struggle to achieve.
I highly recommend Hoff-Rome's workshops.http://artistlife.com/ If you are open to new processes, the experience is rewarding. If you think you want to be more loose, you will learn if you really are comfortable with the intuitive flow.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Pictorial Accuracy, Biblical Verse, Darwin and the Cloud Cap on Mt. Hood

I observed Mount Hood early in the morning March 3, traveling north bound on Oregon Hwy 205. A cloud cap was on top. Excited I recorded a picture in my Mole Skin pocket book and wrote a few words of interpretation as a title - " a wave of frothy clouds breaking over Mt. Hood." After thinking about my experience, I wrote and listened to my thoughts as I read out loud with the hopes that I would be able to communicate my excitement as a simile:

Like sea foam, clouds churn over the crest of Mount Hood.

Although I am an artist, I will make some scientific observations about communicating feelings in my 2-d pictures as well as my word pictures.

Theory 1: People associate new stimuli with familiar stimuli of a different nature. For example I have been painting ocean waves last month so when I saw an unusual cloud formation over Mt. Hood, I saw the clouds on the mountain similar in shape to foam on waves peaking and beginning to break.
A good theory should be repeatable in other examples. Genesis paints a picture in words: To explain the energy and nature of creation to an agrarian people, God is likened to a human taking actions. A most awesome activity of man is making potery as potter god made a female companion from dirt and a rib of Adam. It is ludicrous to think that the early Israelites of Mose's time would be moved to feel they are a people and want to obey the law if their book began with creation explained by the details uncovered thousands of years later. The periodic table would be difficult for them to memorize and uplift their behavior.

Another example is Darwin who was untrained in science yet developed the theory of evolution and descent of species. His observation of nature was contradictory to his education as a clergyman with attention to the Bible. Being familiar with Genesis, Darwin saw the discrepancy between the verses of Genesis and the changes of size between fossils and living animals. Gregor Mendel and August Wesmann from the same period were genetics who did more accurate and scientifically correct work, however they are less well known because they didn't give the all encompassing ideas of evolution boldly explained. Darwin was an example of seeing the new stimuli that did not correlate with his familiar Bible.

Theory 2: Similes are not scientific law. A no brainer truth! Yet today many intelligent people believe Biblical verses are to be read literally as the word of God. Why, I ask, wouldn't God select poetic inspiration kindeling feelings of awe for nature, reveal a reflection of history to instruct and to promote the self -esteem of humans believing that they are made in the image of God. Self-esteem is necessary to raise the bar of their own expectations. Having high self opinion, people are made ready to accept and abide and teach laws to survive as a people. Why would God impart a scientific knowledge like periodic charts to a agricultural people? Instead I see the wisdom is taught through elements not the same as the wisdom but similar to what is known by the early Israelites. Like the Biblical verse pictures record a phenomena with elements that are different from what is being depicted. So in emotional contexts, poetic simile functions as a communication of emotion and never can be observed as scientific fact or law.

Friday, March 06, 2009

In Tango He Pauses, She Crosses

Sometimes a finished painting keeps saying to me, "I can be more. Come on don't be afraid. I am not all that perfect. The intention was to make the gardenia costumes. Look down on the feet . The feet tell the Tango story." So here is the painting I started as Gardenia Tango.