Monday, December 3, 2012

Calendar Collage

I like doing collage. I don't know if other artists feel this way, but often after I finish a painting or drawing, I don't really have a desire to see it much anymore. Sort of like hanging a photo of yourself on your own wall. It might look nice, but generally you've been there and done that. Collage feels very different than that to me. By mixing together and rearranging the images and designs of others, I feel like I get to pull from places in my subconscious that wouldn't otherwise make themselves known. I also enjoy the sense that I'm putting a puzzle together that reveals itself step by step. For these reasons I don't get tired of looking at these pictures, and I'm pretty attached to them. Anyway, the next three images are from a series I'm currently working on that's loosely based on the months, and will eventually make up a 12 month calendar that I plan on marketing. ( if anyone feels like putting them in a show that would be great too)


I think this is May, but that's still to be determined.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

I have a thing for old cars. Anything say, pre 1990. I like cars that are made out of steel and glass and float down the road, and when you are behind the wheel you know that you are in charge of a big, powerful machine.

My affinity for 
classics may have something to do with the car that I grew up with- a  baby blue 1973 Buick Electra with power windows and white vinyl interior- aka The Queen Mary. 
That's me in the back and my little sister in the front, looking very chill in her Hollywood glasses.

These are painted in oil on small (4"x 6") panels that were well gessoed and super smooth. I really liked the idea of squeezing such  a grand car onto a small surface- for me it evokes the feeling that I get from these cars anyway- like they are too big to be contained. Plus, all that chrome deserves some attention,  wouldn't you agree?

Friday, October 5, 2012

Song for the painter

Three days ago I almost died.

I was downtown, leaving the gallery where I have my work. Kibbee sits on a quiet residential street that’s lined with cars. As my car was rolling I decided to call my sister for one of our evening chats. There was no one behind me, so I merely slowed my car to a stop to look down and press the “call log” button on my phone. After pushing call, I accelerated again and continued down the street. The whole action took less than a second.

I was speaking to my sister as I came to the four way stop. I took a right and headed toward the road to get on the interstate. Because I went through a stop sign I was still accelerating as the light for me to turn changed to green. Had I been driving full speed, had I not spent one second to push a button on my phone, I would have been in that intersection as a white Dodge Ram ran a red light doing seventy.

One second.

Three days ago, on that same day, some one I knew and respected very much did die. Long time Atlanta curator John Otte was killed in a bicycle accident in New Orleans. This is surreal to me. This is a shocking death.

I met John only very briefly, visited only one of his brilliant art shows. In that short time, I could see that John was a warm and loving person who exuded enthusiasm about life and art, and lived an artist’s life: one that was full of beauty and meaning and, for him, camaraderie.

I was so fortunate to meet this man. I was so lucky that we bumped into each other, and that he invited me to the art show that he had curated and was in town for. I’m so glad I went. 

I learned a lot from John Otte, respected him immensely, and my life only barely brushed with his. I can only imagine the multitudes of people who are grieving over the news of his death. I know there are many.

The world of art can be as muddled and confused as any other aspect of this oh-so-fragile lifetime, and his was a singular vision that was crystal clear and gorgeous.

Our lives hang in such precarious balance.

One second’s difference for me and I live. One second’s difference for him, and the world has gone a little more dark.


Monday, October 1, 2012

Mermaid, ballpoint pen
Just a little doodle. I've always suspected that the "doodles" that take place while I'm talking on the phone or just sitting around come from a different place in my consciousness than the more controlled, careful drawings and paintings of the work I show. I think they tend to leak a little more insight into whats going on with my subconscious than do the planned images- although- that may not apply with this little person. I just like doing the simple face and placing it in all manner of situations.  
Kelley's Island. Buffalo New York is on the other side of the water.
Ever seen this happen in the sky before? I haven't. This isn't Photoshopped in any way. I took it at dusk. in Ohio.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

I'm beginning to work more seriously with photography. I will have some work in an upcoming show at Kibbee Gallery in October.   I took this photo with my (fun little) Canon Elph 300 hs on a recent trip to Kelleys Island in Ohio.  

I've been challenging myself recently reproduce my own work. I have a series of watercolor illustrations that I'm making for a children's book, and while I've mostly finished, I'm being picky and repainting each image onto a higher quality paper. It's been an exercise to see how close I can come to duplicating the original, and that idea has been working its way into my doodles. (I kind of suspect that my interest in replicating line and form may also have something to do with my interest in working with other people's handwriting in some of my other pieces.) 

Kelleys Island, 2012. 

I like this little person. He/she  show up quite a bit in my doodles. I'm working on a couple of oil paintings for the upcoming  Swan Coach House "Little Things Mean Alot" show that involve this character, who up until now has been only ink. I'll post them once they are presentable....

"Jay", 3"x 4", colored pencil and ink on toned paper

finally- this is unrelated and has nothing to do with me, but it's great and like I said, I wanted to put up a variety. . .

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Sunday, September 9, 2012

"Mom and the murdered cousin" 81/2"x 11", chalk, graphite and collage
Some more from my family album series.

"I want to tell you her name" 8 1/2"x 11" chalk, graphite and collage

Saturday, September 8, 2012

"Greatmother and Mom", 8 1/2" x 11", chalk, graphite and collage

These drawings are  from a recent show I was part of at Kibbee Gallery in Atlanta.   They are based on a series of old family photos I inherited when my great aunt passed away. I was fascinated not only by the pictures, but the stories that came with the collection.  This is an image of my mom and her mother. The paper I used in the collage is the paper that the photos were originally glued onto. The paper albums were created by an eccentric family member, who apparently didn't go out much but had many hobbies, including teaching herself Braille- despite the fact no one in our family was blind.   I have masses of this crumbling old paper that came with the photos, and it is all covered in Braille. I'll let you know when I find out what it all says. Right now it's still a mystery to me.

"Nancy Sue and Frances", 8 1/2" x 11",  chalk, graphite and collage

With this series I wanted to integrate the handwriting of the past along with the imagery. The writing and "stamp" on this drawing are  reproduced from what was on the back of the photograph. I projected and then traced the handwriting directly onto my drawing in order to have as exact of a copy as possible. I don't know who originally labeled the photograph of these two sisters (one is my grandmother), or when, but I like the idea that their mark remains present. 

Friday, September 7, 2012

"Good Luck, Cat" oil and epoxy, 12"x 12"

"Good Luck, Cat" detail.

The original title of this painting was something like "Miss Pitty Pat's courageous foray into the field of narcissistic bliss" (or something like that) but...I shortened it.  This piece is from when I had just begun using epoxy in my work (any one seeing this who has used epoxy before will notice the telltale air bubbles of a novice.) I like the depth and texture epoxy lends to the work, but after doing a series with it, (including one that was six feet tall) I concluded it is too poisonous and too much of a pain in the butt to work with regularly.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

From sketchbook: "Octopus" ballpoint and colored pencil
"Nude 2", 48' x 36", oil on masonite

Monday, September 3, 2012

"Just Married", detail, pencil

"Just Married", 24"x 18", pencil

Sunday, September 2, 2012

"Necessary Ersatz", 24"x 26", chalk, graphite,  and india ink

 I tend to go through spiritual cycles: sometimes feeling closer to balance and reflection, sometimes further away. This drawing is from a time when I was doing a lot of meditating as well as studying Eastern philosophy. There is a term in Sanskrit called "citta vritti," which translates literally to "monkey mind." It stands for all of the unnecessary thoughts and constant fluctuations that stand between ourselves and and spiritual realization. For me, the markings in the upper left hand corner of this image, sort of birdlike, sort of a confused Sanskrit, represent citta vritti,  and the perfect circle on the right enlightenment. This is a pattern I tend to include in a lot of my work. Of course my explanation of all this is a huge over simplification! If you are interested here is a link to a page that discusses this topic in much more depth.

"All that Stirs up the Lees of things" 12"x 12", oil/masonite

I've been reading Moby Dick, which is an amazing book, and there are more whale paintings to come, I assure you. In the process of painting this I came to love the word "schooner." It's fun to say!

Nude 7, 36"x 24" , oil/masonite

Saturday, September 1, 2012

"Somewhere Near Eden", 34"x 48", oil on masonite

"Ben Goldman Says Yes", 18"x 18", oil and epoxy

"You Hold My Drippy Heart In Your Hands", 36"x 24", oil on masonite

"Butterskull" 24"x 48", oil on masonite

Ok, so there is a story behind the photograph of this painting. When I made this piece, I was working closely from a photograph that I took of an ancient Olmec skull while visiting Monte Alban in Oaxaca, Mexico. (The skull was behind glass in a museum at the site.) I made the somewhat large painting over a period of three days and (creepy) nights, hung it in a show, sold it, and called it done. Not too long after the sale, my friend and I were going through some photos of my work, and we came across this one. She mentioned to me that putting the eyes in was a particularly spooky detail. The thing is, I never painted any eyes. Not even close. Now that you've read this, take another look at this picture in the larger window. See them??