About Me

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

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Observing snow and making studies for future works

In my pile of collage papers I have found textured paper and suitable colors to make some collages of our snow days.
More snow is predicted.

Sunday, November 03, 2013

Watercolor Demonstrations for November 2, Fall Creek Festival


 On the top painting, I looked for the main directions on a complex piece of drift wood and thought of how I would place it on the entire rectangular space. Then the drawing was quick roughing in a generality of the gestural directions of the wood.   Then with a big puddle of color made on a palette, I filled the negative space around the drift wood. Next I put in some more pencil lines trying to define the borders of the high light areas, the mid tones and the darks.  After mixing several grayed down colors on the palette, I painted the values leaving the lightest light the white of the paper with the little speckles of neutral colors from the conditioning of the paper before the painting was started. Last I put a shadow under the drift wood and when some of the paint was used up, I warmed up the gray with a small amount of brown and added a few brushed lines to indicate the grain.

 Less finished is the second painting started with defining the values of the wood itself. Then when that dried I put in the surrounding negative area.  I did not finish the picture because the value changes in the wood are not strong enough considering the darkness of the background.   

So obviously I am a better judge of how the painting is evolving if I paint the negative areas first.  But of course experienced watercolorists can have their own process of painting suited to their expressive style.

The confession of a Oregon Hatchery Research Center, Fall Creek Festival watercolor workshop teacher

Yesterday I stole this painting from a morning workshop student.  It was an accident that I stuffed it in my bag with my demos. And I feel very bad about taking it because I promised to leave it out for him after my class. He cared about it so much that he wanted to take it right after lunch, but was OK with me using it as a demonstration.  I am sorry I am not good at remembering names so if anyone knowing him sees this post please have him call me so I can return it with big apologies.
The stolen painting is a good example of what I was teaching - beginning a painting by marring the surface slightly by splattering a dilute neutral color and letting it dry.
The purpose of splattering the paper are four. First, slightly damaging the perfect machine made paper could help free a person from having to feel their work must be perfect.  Second, leaving the objects almost pure white, while painting all around the object outline, the painter has an immediate feel for the whole picture plane without obsessing with the details of  the object. Of course painting the negative area is not the only way to start a painting: I intend this beginning only for people who have not painted with watercolor.  Third, the splattered white has a finished feel inside the object as soon as there is a good deal of color shapes in the picture.   A slightly sullied white is a better reference than the unfinished look of unpainted paper.  The splattered empty of detail is helpful for deciding where the lightest lights will be.  Fourth, splattered or marred paper is helpful in adjusting the medium darks and darkest darks in relation to the lightest highlights in a watercolor painting.  
If all else fails maybe next year, the stolen painting will be at the workshop and hopefully the wronged student will be back and will be able to claim it.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

"Duck Point", acrylic 24" x 20"

Late in a September day my husband took me and my canvas for a boat ride and we anchored off of Duck Point on the Siletz River. Fishermen know where it is because of the good hole there for catching Chinook.    I sketched with pencil onto the canvas. Then the next day at the RV camp I painted it from memory of years past. Finally a month later I finished it at home.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

"Lunch at Mildred's" - oil painting complete

For the past three months most of my painting time has been devoted to painting this 22" x 28" memory of our families' trip to Central America.  At the table are representatives of three generations of a Mayan family, three generations of our family, and two generations of another family from Oregon.
At the heart of our table are the tortillas. As an invitation to the viewer the empty chair at the bottom of the painting reveals the variety of foods provided by OAT, our tour company.   We enjoyed many local foods accompanying the chicken soup. The line of the tablecloth, I hope points the eye eventually to the open side of the house and to the steaming volcano.

While painting I wondered what Mildred's values were in a land of earth quakes and volcanic eruptions. I had learned that the Mayan people believe they were created from maize. Corn is still a major part of their life along with Western China kept safe in a China cabinet anchored by ropes to a cement block wall. I have not figured how to depict the ropes meaningfully to the viewer but presentation of traditional and new foods must be high on a list of importance.

Monday, October 14, 2013

The oil painting of "Lunch at mIldred's may never be done.

Seventeen years old with a bust line like me at age 70! Hair too curly! A nose too much like mine! Over and over if I do not copy or even if I am looking at a picture, I tend to always paint me, I suppose that is natural.

Mildred still doesn't look Mayan. With a pencil I drew in a new hair line. Brushing the brush strokes smooth with a soft clean brush does make skin look moist and glowing. The lower lip is even more full than Mildred's.  The eyes are good because she is looking at the girl who is passing her a coup while speaking.
The five year old face also looked like me so with an exacto blade I scraped and added some whites.

Mildred is a weaver of Mayan women's blouses. So details in the weaving are important enough to try and depict more clearly.She also made a thin decorative braid for her daughter ending in a tassel.  I hope people are familiar with shuttles for the loom. With a few corrections like eliminating the weaver's shuttle  because it looks like some knitting not weaving.  Also eliminating the clutter because the painting is about what we all felt about lunch.  Also, the post between the dwellings opening needs clarity because people still see the openings as windows. Pertinent to the meal is the food storage in plastic covered buckets. I'll label them as being beans, rice, dried fish for protein, and dried corn. Since Mildred says she fixes chicken soup often, every market day means a meal with fresh foods. Food storage is important to the meal and should be a part of the painting.

Monday, October 07, 2013

Acrylic painting in the rain -"Sunshine breaking through the mist." 44" x 60"

In the 80's I taught airbrush at Linn Benton Community College until my eyes swelled up from the detergent used to clean the brushes. furthermore I needed glasses to see up close and paint spray would obscure and then harden on my glasses or goggles.  

Directions for airbrush-like soft blending on a large scale canvas.

One trick is to keep the surface damp without puddles. With a spray bottle or natures' sprinkles dampen the entire surface.  Place canvas flat on the ground. Then with a cloth rag dip into jar of Liquitex Ultra Matte Gel. Spread gel thinly and evenly over the canvas. Keep the surface damp by spritzing with water. Next add a little color on rag saturated with gel.  Spread colored gel over the still wet canvas.  Then help along the spreading with more spritzing.

If luck is with you the sun will break through  the mist and dry the canvas as it to my great pleasure today.

The upper half of  painting "Sunshine....", required four layers of  the gel treatment.

Saturday, October 05, 2013

I am teaching Watercolor Accordion Books Saturday, Nov. 2, at Oregon Fall Creek Festival

Picture is of accordion watercolor book class participants
One morning and one afternoon the workshops include my watercolor painting accordion books for the eighth year. Each year brings new exciting ideas about a family oriented crafts that include nature study. Other classes include fish printing, wire wrap Jewelry making, recycled grocery bag printing, and bird house making. Classes begin at 10:30 AM and 2 PM. At the Oregon Hatchery Research Center at Fall Creek Road 13 miles West of Alsea on Highway 34 the third annual Fall Creek Festival. This family event welcomes families with members of all generations. The event takes place in the classrooms of the Research Center overlooking spawning salmon in Fall Creek. A morning and afternoon workshop is free with all supplies and a free lunch included. Also given is a vegetarian option. Don't miss the tour of the hatchery after lunch. The public is invited but reservations are necessary as space is limited. This year will include found supplies, and demonstration of commercial papers, paper folding and ideas on seeing nature and keeping memories. To make reservations call 541-487-5512 or e-mail oregonhatchery.researchcenter@state.or.us

Friday, October 04, 2013

The initial stage for a 5 foot long acrylic of sunshine breaking through the mist

The challenge here is to decide whether or not to add a boat in the background or a dragon fly on the bent grass -  or neither. Perhaps work more on the color of the light. The tender green grass wet might pick up more on the golden atmosphere.  There might be more transition of the shallow water or mud.

Learning from painting, "Lunch at Mildred's"

"Lunch at Mildred's" on a rough self-prepared canvas allowed for a dry brush soft pastel effect. In landscapes  the soft approach is easier than trying to do portraits on a rough surface. No wonder that commercial prepared smooth canvas and linen is advertised as being ideal for portraits.

The most important lesson is to keep from building up thick bulging strokes of paint. These ridges make shadows counter to the final shape of the face. Mixed texture gives the face multiple expressions in different lightnings. Likewise, just the smallest difference in color in any given part of the face can change expression from hope to impish mischief.

High lights are the brightest when thick and create a shadow to pop them. So thinking of the direction of light can wait until last.

Paul Cezanne was a good mentor for me because he selected hard edges and soft to create form.  Also he painted wonderful whites.

Thursday, October 03, 2013

Lunch at Guatemalan weaver's home - 22"x28" oil

Eleven people around a table is a challenge for me.  Eleven portraits with facial and body language illustrating the group is engaged and relating to one another. There is outdoor light, reflected light from the white tablecloth, and light from a light bulb.

The biggest challenge is deciding what belongs in the painting and what would get in the way of telling a story. The composition needs to invite the viewer as though they were taking part. My device is to have the empty chair and table setting in the foreground.  Central to the story is corn - the Mayan symbol for how they were created from corn.  The corn plant in the opening of the home could be a ritual plant sewn by a child. The child takes a kernel from this plant and plants it again to see that each generation of corn is identical.  The ritual  teaches them that they are an identical seed to their ancestors. The tortillas in the center of the table is displayed in their handwoven cloth in a basket. A cloth in a kettle also  made the tortillas the most attractively presented food.

This painting is almost done but the  steaming volcano is important but too close to the edge so must be revised and made more prominent. Destructive explosions and earthquakes are a reality for Guatemalans.

As I keep saying every day for two weeks. Tommorrow will be the resolution.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Painting water reflections seen through blades of grass.

Mist is rising from the slightly breeze kissed  water. The mist softens the forms of the grass. 55" long and 38" wide keeping the acrylic damp was possible because of the coastal mist and high humidity. The humidity dictates the way I paint outdoors especially on large canvases.

In the tidal waters there should be no surprise in catching a crab with a worm.
On this 18" square canvas I spent most of my time painting the grass because the blades tended to disappear in the lively sparkling waters. I also used acrylic on this painting begun on a less humid sunny day.

Saturday, September 07, 2013

Challenging Myself to More Difficult Painting - a journal

Goal: Gain the satisfaction of having extended myself outside of my comfort zone.

What I did:
Made video recordings of my step by step resolution of a large outdoor oil painting. I have been inspired by Terrill Welch’s videos on painting on larger canvases and feel gratified by the camaraderie of Facebook artist acquaintances. Videos are an entirely new medium to me.

Worked larger than I thought I could any more.
Since I have been working almost entirely in acrylic for large paintings for 48 years, I am amazed how I remember how I used to paint when I try some new ways to manage my solvents for oils.
Learned that Trader Joe’s vegetable soap and water are useful to break down the pigment washing brushes after each painting session. This soap saved me from the fumes of paint thinner. A big deal for me because these fumes can give me a head ache.

Applied the paint in ways I do not remember using before. In the past I have added linseed oil if the paint was thick and drying out. But for painting mediums I used to use turpentine and paint thinner.  This time I used enough linseed oil to making a spreading medium. The paint was thinned enough to drip on the canvas.

The linseed oil made the paint shinny before drying.  The paint dries in a couple of days to a matt finish. More permanent is the liquid looking shape of the brush strokes.

Became more aware of the stages of development of the painting.
The first burst of energy can be frantic when performing in front of the camera because I am trying to paint over a large area in a short time. The second stage is where specific areas do not measure up to favorite areas. Quick fixes invite picking at the painting.  To avoid picking, I kept saying I wanted to keep the whole painting in mind and work all over but I could not avoid this stage.  The next step is obvious - a rest where the painting is put away or just left in view where the mind can subconsciously work on it.  The next stage is returning to the canvas after working on others so the canvas is no longer precious and I can try painting all over the canvas to resolve perhaps a new goal. The last step should be the signing of the painting in which a few details are carefully selected for revision. Revisions are to be consistent and important to the meaning of the painting.  Sometimes after the signing, I continue to want to make changes.


In my “Lunch at Mildred’s”, another painting done at the same time as the video recordings of “Rhitner Creek”, I used a lot of paint out of the tube without a medium to increase the soft pastel effect. I scrubbed with the brush and mushed the colors together.  To some degree the dry brush made a pleasant effect. The dry application is usually unpleasant. Dry brush on a rough surface leaves specks of color underneath. 
  I was surprised to find a sketchy area which was very direct with energetic movement.  Overall the painting makes me want to put on my glasses when I am, already, wearing them.  Expressions of the people are secondary to the softness and I want their feelings to carry the painting more.  I am thinking of painting another one of the lunch with decisive outlines and strokes of color showing contrast.

“Near Painted Hills” was a 15 minute tail gate painting started in June. Then I worked on the foreground in three sessions.  One right after returning home, I put the painting up where I past it every day, then Sept. 3 at Coyote Rock Marina.  Big drops of rain fell so I quickly used some left over paint mixed in the lids of heavy body acrylics. The energy of the storm and the pressure of finishing before the downpour psyched me up to the same impulsiveness as when I started the painting on location.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

"Lunch at weaving village, Santa Catarina Barahona, Guatemala" , 22" x 28" oil

Mildred weaves. Full spectrum colors through her fingers become finely woven double sided designs for table runners. She is a business woman selling her weaving to add to her husband's wages in the field.  She has done well.  At 27 she has four children and owns a fine china cabinet. Color yarns fly through her fingers while she is sheltered by a manicured, gray, unbaked clay floor, corrugated steel roof between cement block walls of neighboring buildings. Her home is open air to let out the kitchen fire smoke. Unfiltered open air light is fine to judge the color effects.

I am honored to own a work that took her two and a half weeks to make. But I feel a little guilty because our tour company, OAT, wants to keep the lunch in the home of a Mayan specifically as a cultural experience and not a sales op. I on the other hand feel enriched by knowing the artist and by having a glimpse of her life.

I hope my painting is a worthy documentation of Mildred's life as a weaver and woman in a cluster of extended family households. Having extended family working together makes her weaving for hours and hours possible.

So a simple humble dwelling might be ideal in a land of many earthquakes and volcanic activity?

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Frederick Heidel's 1991 watercolor, "Two Up and One Down" is a poetic window into his coping with wife F. Saltzman's death?

My interpretation of Fredrick Heidel's watercolor comes from being his student and owning his watercolor painting, "Two Up and One Down" for 16 years. This interpretation is my current best guess of Heidel's intentions.


The accuracy of my interpretation of his biographical life is not the point.  I will see a different scenario tomorrow. Also my recognition of people and animals are not conclusive. Other people can have widely different experiences with it. The point of trying to interpret his painting is to strengthen my own painting vocabulary to express my emotions. His painting could reveal the steps in its resolution and what painting could do for quality of life.

                                                                * * *

I studied painting under Heidel my entire undergraduate years in the early 60's at Portland State College, Portland, Oregon. In 1976 I took a watercolor figure painting class and learned more that was relevant to his watercolors like this one.

In 1997  I wanted a  Heidel painting to inspire me in color and imagination.  But didn't know which one to pick.  All of his watercolors had beautiful colors, maybe even more so then this one. I was drawn to "Two Up and One Down" partly because the figure bowing her head towards the bunny looked to me like Heidel's deceased wife, Florence Saltzman. 


Florence is a flower looking downward reminding me of her body gestures. The red scarves she wore over her hair! Her high forehead too!

 Accidentally or giving the appearance of naturally occurring, Florence's little nose and little point of a chin came into being late in the development of the painting as her profile is the edge of the darker layer of green in the background. More difficult to recognize is the negative area above Florences' high forehead. For me the purple and green dark background becomes positive hair pulled back into the red bun.

I realize Heidel may not have seen his deceased wife in the flower he was painting. If he did, he may not have seen it until nearly finished, when painting the background and then did not choose to pop it out any more than it is.

 I did not have Florence as a teacher, but I have special memories of her.  Accidentally we were at Myer and Frank's housewares at the same time. She was buying wedding gifts for graduating students who were getting married, one of them being me. With a knowing gleam of satisfaction in her eyes, she asked for my approval of salad serving spoons in my stainless pattern. 

Clever choice on her part! Every time I use the serving spoons, almost every day for 48 years, I think of Florence.  Often I ask if my painting experience measures up to her wisdom. I usually ask if painting was a part of my every day doings as she had made painting in her life. I ask myself if painting is a language to me too. Every salad I make, I remember Heidel and his vegetable garden paintings and the art of living as they enjoyed.


Another reason for selecting this painting was my fascination with paintings of three figures in general like ones of Supper at Emmaus'.  Or Diego Rivera's painting of Freda just after she died and his other woman! These paintings have visual language symbolism in the placement and the presentation of  the figures.


I felt "Two Up and One Down" would be a painting that I could look at a long time and would keep seeing something new. I wanted to recall Heidel's parting comments when I finished my undergraduate studies. He said he did not prepare students to be successful at selling. He hoped my art journey would be a rich development. He hoped he had not squelched my intuitiveness. He wanted me to always paint what really mattered to me. He believed in keeping work  for a long time to assist in one's development. He wanted my intuitive poetic self to develop and blossom. 

In keeping with his desire for his students to find their own way, he never demonstrated in class his own painting. In my four years as a student, I never went to any of his art openings or even looked at his work. To my knowledge Heidel did not have numerous new painters following his direction in painting. At his memorial exhibit, I expected to meet other former students, but I was alone as far as I know. 

 Some of his students over a 30 year period must have been successful selling. But maybe not many.  Heidel shared with me that right after graduating from the Chicago Art Institute he thought people would not want to buy his paintings. Not caring if he sold, he thought selling art can stunt creativity.  Or maybe when a painter is just starting out finding their voice, the market can divert their efforts from reaching a rewarding painting experience.

In years since his advice, I see examples of artists who thrive in their creativity when they are selling.  But for me, I work in many directions when the market demands more of the same and discourages my exploration between the acceptable genera. Furthermore, he did paint more and more for the market as he grew older.  He kept his earlier work which now surface in galleries after he passed away.

Fresh out of college, despite his advice, I put my work up for sell with some success. The work was object orientated, just the opposite of what I said my interest was when I was a student. As a student I said the subject was only a springboard to being poetic.

His interest in subject as a springboard is evident in his work.  For example, Heidel painted from his garden as a beginning for an internal symbolic journey in "Two Up and One Down". The flowers were not important as flowers. They were symbolic of people and the fragility of life.

 When he painted watercolors like this one, he was also making fused glass windows. The glass interest carried over to painting. Or was it the paintings carried him over to making fused glass?  In "Two Up and One Down"  the entire picture plane is covered by pencil lines forming a shattered glass grid. The shattered glass was symbolic of what his life was shattered by the death of his wife, Florence.

When I painted thick on coarse textured linen, Heidel asked me why I liked the texture. He said he liked smooth surfaces.  True to his earlier likes he selected smooth hot pressed Arches watercolor paper for "Two Up and One Down".  The smooth paper picked up every nuance of his impulsive nervous tapping of a sharp pencil to deliberate, weighted slow marks. If these pencil marks were applied in the same way on rough, wet paper, they would be blurred or broken up. 
 Heidel's whole process is revealed from his early light pencil drawing to later heavier emphatic statements. Struggle was revealed by eraser marks or by lightening areas with white pastel. He erased heavy lines on the tall thin lily I associate as being him. His lily stem became thinner  by making what was his body part of the background. 
His painting, I believe, was a part of his life's indecision and struggles on how to plant his legs and the bunny's feet. He made Florence's skirt smaller erasing a thick line that made a larger area in the background. He left two legs one bigger than the other. Both look like they are solid and ready to stay while the two parts of Florence's upper parts form a red nosed, yawning specter with arms stretched out to leave.


An interesting mystery within grasp of a conclusive solution, is deducing what color went on first and then following each layer upon layer. 

 He started with Florence's face.  He painted the figures first and then the back ground redefining the figures dimensions when painting the negative area around them. His last color was a violet over the bunny's nose, shaking or blotting the color on the margins he used the same brush load for another final layer over layers of darker greens in the background.

Heidel in the figure painting class had us experiment trying different approaches to where we began on our figure paintings. Either the positive areas or the negative.  Either with warm colors or cool. There isn't a right or wrong way.


Another interesting mystery is to follow his emotions as he painted and drew. Lines applied quickly and lightly express a different emotion than lines made bearing down strongly and heavily. There are lines drawn between Heidel, the blushing lily, and Florence's heads or head. The section on top of Florence could be one of the breasts that was removed in a mastectomy. 

The lines are light pencil. The lower one from Heidel's stem travels beneath the bunny's green scarf, traversing Florences' closed eyes to her ear and bun. There are number of "x'' marks along the lower line and an x on Heidel's stem throat. My guess is the "x" cover something that is no longer. They could no longer speak to one another.

A much darker and deliberately executed line made late in development of the painting is a dark line on the right edge of the blushing lily. The line goes up from the heart along the throat clearly defines his direction towards the bunny with a definite arrow on the lily pointing to the right bunny ear.  Heidel said that a line can be made with sensitivity through out its course with the way they begin and end being very important.

The blushing lily and the bunny look as though they will head for the horizon and Florence will exit to the far right leaving the shattered glass life behind.  In life Heidel remarried.
Whether Heidel used a painting method to make life decisions is unknowable.  "Two Up and One Down" is not even likely a life pivotal painting. The date of this painting is 1991 while the date of his life shattering experience is closer to 1966 or 7.
In "Two Up and One Down" Heidel followed the directives of Florence Saltzman to demonstrate that visual painting is a language.  Heidel's "Two Up and One Down" can be read like poetic writing. Heidel's painting brings new possibilities to me on Florence's will to have painting a part of her everyday doings. Everyday doings can include life adjustments through painting?
When I set out to buy a Heidel, I wanted to paint bright colorful happy acrylics like his. Then I bought  a painting that communicates as much through drawing as through color.  Though his painting suggests to me a sad part of the Heidel's lives,  painting sweetened their lives - "Two Up and One Down"  is  a happy to me.
As for the meaning of the painting for my art: I am going to evaluate what my needs are. How much I need it to be happy? If I am still drawn to textured surfaces, I will examine  how I am getting across what I want to express on textured surfaces. The order in which an intuitive painting is made? Are the shapes defined in the positive or defined with the outline of the background?  Allowing the viewer to guess at the order, to muse over the meanings is an enticing way to speak through making marks. Like Heidel did, I will look at art history examples of textured surface to find the range of expressive texture vocabulary that I can bring to my work. I see he employed drawing techniques of twentieth century painters in a book he shared in figure painting class. So will I.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Interpreting "Ritner Creek" over time

The last time I painted large scale streams on 3 foot by 5 foot or larger canvases was about ten years ago.  I was discouraged by my market that dried up. Several attempts at winning commissions for public places failed, and the economy slumped.

At age 70 I must wait no longer to bite into another attempt. I want to share what I have learned.  I find painting large meaningful.  The extra effort is thrilling and challenging. Working large so my whole body flows like water. I paint the energy I feel as much as what I see.

I used to say that I danced when I painted.  Rhythm was what I felt in nature. When I watched myself with brush in hand, I was amazed to see myself moving like I learned from a few ballet lessons when I was10 years old.

In other ways the videos are very humbling. I am having difficulty both talking and painting at the same time. I have terrible stage fright. These recordings are safe on a flash drive and waiting for me to learn how to edit a movie.

Tomorrow I will record the final steps in resolving this painting.

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Outdoor painting is not necassarily better than working from photographs

This painting is as much about a muscular impression as feeling the forces  of nature weighting down a fluid rock. I feel the breeze and hear the birds. The dryness of the air dries the brush. More paint on the brush slows the drying. 
Working from this photo would likely result in a more photographic image.


"Near Painted Hills, Oregon" acrylic on canvas, 18" square

Working on location is rewarding, I really avoid using photographs and studio copying of photos. On location requires immediate selection of your window which could be more panoramic than the limits of the usual lens. Copying is not important - the landscape before me is just a springboard to a precious experience. 

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

My tool for color designing.
Thirty three pieces are ready to hang up May Day tomorrow. The exhibit is dedicated to all those people who think they can't be an artist.
  “Making  Memories” collage and water media paintings expose my creative play and struggles.  I believe even if you do not make the greatest and the most saleable art, immersion in visual language is a rich learning experience and can be a vital part of every aspect of living.

Follow my art journey.   Painting /collages going back as far as 1966 are hung according to how they relate to my development not in linear time. But a sense of passing time can be seen because they are numbered in order and dated.  Each label has a few words on my reasons for making art her life.

Where:   The Albany Main Library second floor

2450 14th Avenue SE

Albany, OR 97322

When:    May 1 through June

Monday –Wednesday   10:00 a.m. – to 8:00 p.m.

Thursday –Friday   10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Saturday 10:00 a.m. -5:00 p.m.

Sunday: 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Preparing May and June art exhibit at the Albany Public Library

Being sentimental,  I have titled my next exhibit - "Making Happy Memories".  Not all of my paintings are happy to me.  Some are about environmental issues or other politics.  Some are about angry emotions.  These disturbing images are not to be in the library exhibit.

I am taking the labeling of the paintings seriously. On each name tag I make a short artist statement.   Pictures of book covers are included. Some of these memories are realized in the subconscious with belated recognition..  Also I made, while working, conscious inclusions of books which were favorites from years ago.

My careful labeling with dates is motivated by my desire to share the development of ideas and process.. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Early glass and tile mosaic and today's paper mosaic repeat shapes and colors

I had forgotten that in high school I activated the energy movements between figures. After making a series of collages I looked at my 1960 mosaic of dancers. The above picture is a detail of the mosaic.
" Fisherman's Cove" 12" square painted paper collage started on a"Color Bridges" ceramic tile and transfered to paper.

Art for making visual memories

My May and June exhibit for the upstairs of the Albany Public Library main branch is

" Collages and Acrylic Paintings for Making Memories".  

While preparing works for the exhibit I had some moments of discovery. My feelings for visual colors, textures, shapes and calligraphic lines are connected to early memories.  Some of these visual memories were enhanced by experiencing different art materials.  

Looking at my 1980 cloth collage, I  noticed how similar it is to the illustrations in a book I saved from my childhood - The Golden Circus, a fuzzy golden book.  Other creative experiences important to my paintings include almost all my deliberate choices from writing letters to choosing what to wear each day or my presentation of every day meals.

 Applique on painted silk completed around 1980 36" x 30"


"Falconer"  2012,  painted paper collage 18" x 14"

The biggest surprise came after I started making labels for my pieces.   I had a hunch that the new work was like some of my old favorites.  Then when I pulled the old work out, I was stunned. I can't believe how similar the color selection, shapes, textures and calligraphy are to works in my other media and early memories like book illustrations.  

Saturday, March 30, 2013

"Fish Eye on the Sky" paper collage

Just a month ago all the collages were begun on a grid tool.  Some of the grids were on felt or a ceramic tile.  The idea was to stimulate nonobjective abstract designs.  Only partly successful, the collages started to take on the character of earlier works that suggest an object.

The next challenge is to find color combinations reflecting the landscape for acrylic paintings. The collage making might carry over to the painting.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Framing collages for an exhibit

Added a border for the framed piece.

Cropped for the finish 

Added cheeks and glued a piece of paper
 to put the clown on an angle.

Made a facsimile letter for "Letter Writing Art"

May and June my collages and paintings will be upstairs in the Albany Public Library.