About Me

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Documenting a period in my development that could become pivotal

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Woodlot Mother and Grandson at Bond Butte Pond

Tomorrow my new painting will be due for "This Everlasting Valley II" at River Gallery, Independence, Oregon, May 5 through July 5.

The day before it is due I started making a small change and ended up repainting most of the painting to pop out the figures while establishing a path for the eye to explore and come back to the figures.

The purpose of my painting is to paint an update on the painting, "Mother Thinning Woodlot" my other painting that will also be on exhibit.

Celebrating volunteers and donations for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wild Life my painting is of Woodlot Mother sharing the pond where her trees are now embracing a hatch of warm water fish at an I5 Freeway pond. The pond was dredged out to build up the highway over the wetland farms. The painting is nearing completion. Next the submerged tree will embrace the fish like the grandmother embracing her grandson.

Diane Widler Wenzel’s Journey in Paint

All my paintings put together chronologically are a pictorial journal of my life. For 44 years some of my journey is Willamette Valley farming, forestry and fisheries starting from when I helped my husband to be, Donald Wenzel, plant trees near Vernonia, Oregon. I painted us trout fishing from a row boat among the flooded snags at Quarts Lake. At the Cooper Mountain Wenzel Farm I painted him on the antique family tractor putting up hay bales. Then we married in 1965 and moved away. Twenty years later we moved back to Oregon. We settled in a North Albany neighborhood with farm pasture and forest in our back yard.

Our neighbor, Dian Gerstner, is a true stewardess of the earth as she cares and tends her overgrown Christmas tree lot, harvesting firewood, and removing dead trees. She is the Mother of the Woodlot, the subject of my painting of 1999.

I painted a series telling the story of how we sold our pasture lot in 2007. The fir trees were cut down to make way for a house.

One of the paintings was a dream that did not materialize with our trees. My dream was that the root balls were placed in a pond where the tangled roots provided shelter for small newly hatched fish. This painting may have helped to inspire my husband to volunteer his logging skills.

April 2008 many of Mother Woodlot’s pine trees had dead tops and the lower branches of the trees were thick masses of dead dry fuel – a real danger for a possible hot wild fire. The cleaning up of the fire hazard was a must to ensure the safety of the encroaching urban development. Mother Woodlot donated some of her smaller trees and brushy branches to enhance the fish habitat on Bond Butte Pond near Halsey - a large freeway lake where gravel was dredged out to raise the I5 Freeway above the wet lands. My husband volunteered his logging skills working more than full time for over a month. He chain sawed out dense limbs. He pulled out less healthy trees with the tractor and put them in big piles for hauling. He arranged for Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to hire a logging trucker for the purpose of knocking down larger trees and transporting three loads to streams.

What an unexpected joy awaited me when I first visited Bond Butte Pond and saw how the pond is being transformed from a scar on the landscape to a park of great beauty enhancing the farm land of the Willamette Valley as well as providing recreational warm water fishing and abundant wildlife. Thus I have come a long way to paint “Grandmother and Grandson in the Fishery Created from her Trees – Bond Butte Pond.”

Diane Widler Wenzel Bio
Recording my Journey in Paint

Education :

1966 Bachelor of Science Degree with high honors in drawing and painting,
Portland State College, Portland, Oregon.

Solo Exhibitions
2009 May, Recent Journey, Sam’s Station, Corvallis
November ’08 – January, Of the Oregon Coast, Sylvia Beach Hotel, Newport,
2008 “Hidden Dragons,” Sam’s Station, Corvallis
“Dragons Boogie Woogie,” Enid Joy Mount Gallery, Keizer Art Association
2005 “ A Vase of a Hundred Flowers” Pegasus Art Gallery, Corvallis
2003 “Trip to Tibet” Albany City Hall
2001 “Personal Symbols,” Footwise Window, Corvallis
2000 “Alaska Watercolors,” Boccherini’s Coffee Shop, Albany
“Robinson House Series,” Footwise Window, Corvallis
1999 “Watercolors,” Albany City Hall
“Waves in Abstract,” Sylvia Beach Hotel, Newport, Oregon
1998 “Water Impressions,” Illustrated Garden Gallery, Corvallis
“Watercolors and Acrylics,” New Morning Bakery, Corvallis
1993 Good Samaritan Hospital, Corvallis
Arts and Letters Gallery, Albany
1986 Two Rivers Market, Albany
1978 The Nut Loft, Aloha
My Studio, Clover Bldg., Bellingham
1969 Interactive Painting with Installation, Magnolia Gallery, Bellingham
Parlor Gallery, Portland, Oregon
1968 Hamman's Gallery, Bellingham, Washington
1967 Courtyard Gallery, Illahe Hills Country Club, Salem
Lake Oswego and Beaverton Public Libraries
La Points Department Store, Salem
1966 The Loft Theater Gallery, Tucson, Arizona

Group Exhibitions

2007 acrylic paintings, “Four Women Seven Years Later”
Benton County Historical Museum, Philomath, Or
Feathers, Fins and Fire,” a group of three painters
La Selles Stewart Center, Oregon State University Corvallis, Oregon
2006 This Bountiful Place, Portland ,Oregon
1999 13 watercolors and acrylics,
“Four Women Artists Celebrating the Seasons of Life,”
Benton County Historical Museum

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Filtering Brush Strokes demonstrated by Antonia Acock

Antonia Acock is an accomplished well known mineral painter working with oil and mineral pigments on glazed china. She opens her studio teaches students on Monday afternoons. She does not like to call her art China painting because today the craft has been discovered by painters as a creative art. On Monday I was happy to start a plate with the feathered filtering method. Some colors need to be applied in order because the gold pigment pinks will block under painted colors. In this exercise we were to do flowers. I have picked a hard one says Tony because I am painting another gardenia painting with tango dancers from a difficult perspective.

Filtering is a brush technique that I have avoided because the beauty of the brush stroke and mark is my style. In Filtering transparency is important allowing the light and gloss to partially glow through the pigments. Antonia is very tolerant of my digression from tradition. I left three strong edges on my plate for the faces of the dancers and one gardenia petal. Next Monday I will photograph the plate after the firing and also my finishing touch before the second firing.

Monday, April 27, 2009

China tile Tango

Today I am going to try again to paint outside my comfort zone so small. I am more comfortable painting canvases 6 feet by 4 feet.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Brickett and hairdryer forge a digging stick

Yesterday my husband enjoyed making a forge to hammer out a pipe to a sharp end. This is a tool for an elderly native American friend who likes to use a digging stick instead of a shovel in his garden. The pipe makes the tool lighter weight than a crowbar. I think this digging stick is exceptional.
While Don was hard at work I tried some finishing touches on my Tango exhibit paintings. I am still wondering what my new direction will be in my art journey. Reading the history of Argentina Tango, the music began to have political content during an oppressive regime. Then the Tango was banned. I think folk art including dance is real art. People do really meaningful work when there is a felt need. In the 21st century we are entering a new age and I wonder if art will be made to be given away as gifts or will be more marketable filling real needs. Should I be asking what I can do to help people with my art? In the past I did some paintings of creative people and tried to honor them in paint.

Friday, April 24, 2009

A walk in McDonald's Forest

My husband and I went for a delightful walk today on our favorite loop up to the lake and back down in McDonald's Forest near Corvallis, Oregon. Anyone game to paint out here with me? I really do not care to paint from photographs when all I need is someone else interested in sticking around long enough while we paint.
I have just about completed my series of Tango for now and I want to respond to this beautiful weather even though we had frost this morning.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Tango also means Play

The dancer lifted his partner as he twirled around. Faster and faster, around they go and then right after this painting she will suddenly bend back as he comes to a quick stop. This painting was on a perfectly fine abstract, but I thought the splats would be appropriate to the near end of a dance.

Some more full sheet watercolor papers and mixed media painting made the day pass very quickly. I didn't go out and paint in the beautiful sunshine today but the mood the sunshine was instrumental for these paintings.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Steps in Creating an Arches National Park painting

In my sketch book a few years ago I used up some cobalt violet drying up on my palette. It was placed around the edges of a painting my mother started in her last days when she was suffering from dementia. Then when I was in Arches last week I started drawing and painting over the random colors. I liked the juniper trees and bushes that were starting to spring back to life. In the studio I added some white lines and more branches. I have expressed the struggle of life and rock. This 9" x 12" sketch may evolve into a full scale painting.

Monday, April 20, 2009

La Boca Tango

"La Boca Tango" is my memory of the colors of La Boca district, the birth place of the tango. Mixed media watercolor, gouache and pastel on paper 29 1/2" x 22". This is my center piece painting for my May exhibit at Sam's Station in Corvallis.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Thoughts on petroglyphs as seen by a crafter of images

We were in awe of the petroglyphs on a trail just off the main one to Delicate Arch in Arches National Park near Moab. The horse riders and sheep are clearly recognizable. We questioned why the sheep horns didn't curl all the way around or was this an extinct animal we were looking at. The horses indicated a recent petroglyph ruling out the likelihood of extinction. I would venture to make several observations based on my experience crafting images on different surfaces with a variety of tool. First, the petroglyphs are images made in accordance with the properties of the cutting tool and the resistance of the rock surface. In order to depict circular curved horns it would require continually readjusting the angle of the cutting tool. Second, making the horns completely circular violates principals of making the most recognizable image with the simplest of means. Third, the addition of the circular design pulls attention to itself like a bulls eye and the importance of the animal body is diminished. Looking at petroglyphs on the side of the Potach Road

Saturday, April 18, 2009

From Goblin Valley we headed back towards Salt Lake City

Cloud concealed Mt Neboe was the challenge of the day as a painting done moving 70 miles an hour down the highway. Please click on image to see detail of texture.
Hale beat against our window and made the road treacherous in the high passes last Thursday. In relative comfort I painted as we relentlessly drove on in the Subaru. The lower drawing is Prang watercolor pencil on my super deluxe Bee Paper Aquabee 9 inch by 6 inch Supper Deluxe sketch book. The top two painting are done on a sketch book purchased in Lhasa, Tibet. The paper is opalescent with a grid of small circles. In English the cover says"Gouache Sketch Book.

It is tricky being both neat and loose while painting in a moving car. I only used a tablespoon or less water at a time and managed to use all the water before refilling my little container on the Cotman compact set of 13 of the 14 watercolor half tins. I replace the lead white with titanium white from a tube. I hold the Cotman set in my left hand. My sketchbook is in my lap and I paint and draw with my right hand. It works well on long trips but occasionally a spastic brush swipes the car console.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Family vacation in Moab

Monday I hiked to Delicate Arch in Canyon Lands. It was a perfect day to paint on location.

We were staying at Red Cliff Condos on the south end of Moab. On Tuesday I stayed behind with my grandson who was immobilized by a knee injury. We played chess and watched TV. I had some time to paint especially when he was sleeping. From where we were staying I could see horses, the red cliff and distant snow covered mountains. The painting that is shown here in a frame is a gift for my granddaughter who liked it.

I was fascinated by the fast moving clouds at sunset.

Dust storm at Moab on Wednesday.

We returned on Thursday towards Salt Lake by going to Goblin Valley. This is one of the paintings I did in the car. Tomorrow I will post more of the drawings and car paintings on that day of unseasonal snow and hale storms.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

"Mother Clearing Woodlot" and two of "Woodlot Mother Sharing With Grandson"

"Mother Clearing Woodlot" plus a new painting of mine will be on exhibit in "The Everlasting Valley Exhibit" in May.

I don't know which of the new ones I will enter. I am putting them away for a week. I will be devoting the week to my family. My next post will be Saturday, April 18th. It is good to be able to again post pictures from my camera on a a newly repaired computer.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Bond Butte Pond Bio-enriched

Here is a look at my progress. For those who have not been reading my blog, this is a painting to celebrate volunteers and contributes to Oregon Department State Fish and Wildlife. Mother of the Woodlot is helping her grandson release a fish into the pond that received her wood lot small trees for fish habitat at one of the lakes along Interstate Highway 5. The lake was formed when the gravel was dredged out to build up the freeway above the wetlands.
this painting isn't for sale yet because it will be my entry into an invitational exhibit, "this Everlasting Valley II Exhibition in may this year.
In a few days when Hewlett Packard returns a repaired hard drive and we are set up, I'll post a better and completed painting. there is still work to be done on this one. This is my second painting of the subject in which I want to relate the sheltering barn with these volunteers and with the tree she donated seen submerged on the right.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Scam ripping off artists

A few days ago I recieved this e-mail form with an attempt to copy two of my titles. One title was copied incorrectly. I just answered that I only do transactions through Pay Pal and never heard back.

Good day to you.
I am so excited that I came across of your work on internet search, I am interested in purchasing these creative artworks from you.....................(name of item)

Let me know their various prices and how much discounts are you going to give? I will be happy to have these selected artworks hanged in our new home in South Africa. As well, I want you to take out the shipping cost. I have been in touch with a shipping firm that will be shipping other house decoratives.We are traveling from our Dallas home to our new apartment as soon as possible. On Paying for the artworks, I will be glad to pay you with a Money Order or Cashier`s check in US funds that can be easily cashed at your local bank, please let me know on how to proceed for the payment of the creative artworks.I will await your advise on how to proceed. Have a wonderful day.