The Heron in Flight

Heron in Flight

A few days ago, I made a backwards step in my art journey.

The painting on the canvas 24×36 did not work. On the back, I had crossed out no fewer than 4 failed paintings. The first was “Out on the Town.”  No idea was that was about. The second was “Follow My Lead” which had been a jazz piece that probably did not work because it required a canvas that was more square and I failed in my attempts to salvage the design. The third was “I’m Wet but am Still Dancing” which had the same problem. The title was great though. I turned the canvas vertical and the fourth was “Horn Man” obviously a horn player that I have done before, and it was most likely too redundant – been there done that and don’t want to do it again- at least not that way. 

I decided to take the used canvas to the Virginia Living Museum where I paint once a week.  I turned the canvas horizontal again.  Then using my boldest strokes and large amounts of paint, I did my interpretation of a heron in flight. I like it. 

I say backwards, because if you have been reading my blog, you know that I have been in mucho angst about painting with more meaning.  This painting’s subject (Heron in Flight) has been a favorite for the three years I have painted as Artist in Resident at the Virginia Living Museum.

It was boring until I added the orange, red, and magenta bits. 

My feeling about my work is this. If when I look at the painting and I feel good- really good – I think it is successful for me.

Once I gave a talk to a rather conservative group of women and said that I judged paintings including mine thus.  If I studied it and intellectualized about the technique, I could appreciate it, value it, and applaud the artist and his or her skills.  But that would be my second or third criterion. My first reaction needs to be an emotion. If I can stand before it and almost have an orgasm, then that to me was a really great painting. You might say I am no longer in the orgasmic age group, but you don’t know that. The ladies in the group were slightly appalled. Orgasm? She said orgasm?  OMG!

My second painting I did is the rocky coast of Maine. The coast of New England has been my playground from childhood and I have painted it for years. So, no big breakthroughs. But maybe you don’t need breakthroughs when it is snowy outside and cozy inside and painting a well-known scene with a fire in the fireplace is a better fit.

The Wave

Thoughts from an Artist

Thought I’d share some of my thought process as I get creative …

I am incubating.

Not really a fun time for me. Why can’t I be inspired by a new subject? Or should I play with different ways / techniques of handling the themes I have maybe become too comfortable with- dancers, musicians, people in activities. As much as I try to break away from realism I know myself well enough to accept that I will always have something recognizable in my work.

So I have to push my own envelope.

Every gallery and show …

Every gallery and show I see seems overwhelmingly filled with super realistic art. Are we living in such chaotic times that more structure makes us feel secure? But then there is the in your face cutting edge art in the magazines that I just don’t get. Looking for the middle ground- art that evokes emotion. Now that is where I want to be. I will keep plugging away.

Painting Black and White

Last week I painted some flying herons at the Virginia Living Museum where I paint once a week. But I used only black and white acrylic. It was fun and I will do more. They are little 8×10 and will be in the Hampton Art Center Miniatures and Small Works by Tidewater Artists opening on December 10, 2016. I have always loved black and white and keep several at home so I will not be tempted to sell them. There’s something about sloshing paint around without worrying about color.

Developing concepts and painting them is a process.  Mine is constantly evolving as my life continues to ebb and flow and change and grow.  Looking forward to what is to come.

 

Countdown to Annual Holiday Art Show and Sale

I’ve been busy gathering my paintings from recent shows and far flung galleries in time to share them with you at Annual Holiday Art Show and Sale.  You’ll find art of all sizes from 8 x 10 to large wall-sized paintings.  You’ll also find a broad selection of different themes from sports and dancing, to people and landscapes.  Don’t miss my animal paintings created during my time at the Virginia Living Museum.

Get ready for some great pricing for your holiday gift giving!

Come by, browse, shop and bring a friend.  Here’s the scoop . . .

When:  Friday, November 4, 2016

Time:  5:30 – 8:00 PM

Where:  Associates in Dermatology office,  17 Manhattan Square, Hampton, Virginia (map / directions)

Looking forward to seeing you on Friday evening!

Holiday Show and Sale

 

Wildlife Painting Sale at Virginia Living Museum

VLM Featured Artist ShowAs Artist in Resident at the Virginia Living Museum, I’ve had the opportunity to interact, teach, and share with many families.  From my time there, I’ve also painted a number of delightful wildlife paintings based on the animals active in the museum.  If you’d loved some of these 8 x 10 and 11 x 14 painting, now is the time to grab your favorite before it is gone.  You can purchase any of my paintings  that you find at the Virginia Living Museum for 50% for a short time only.  Come by the Virginia Living Museum for my Wildlife Painting Sale today.

Adding new paintings for the Wildlife Painting Sale

Virginia Living Museum Wildlife Painting Sale

 

 

Come Visit the Virginia Living Museum for Some Animal Art

The art was all hung by the chimney with care . . . wait that’s the wrong song.  Actually the animal art is hanging in the hallway to the left of the gift shop – if you’re visiting the Virginia Living Museum  (VLM – www.thevlm.org).

The new show includes animal art done onsite during demos since November 2013 . I’ve been the artist in residence at the VLM for over a year now.  It’s been a great experience interacting with the visiting students, parents and families as well as painting the live animals.

The majority of the pieces are framed 8×10 and 11×14 acrylics on canvas and are priced at a discount to visitors, staff, and volunteers. In addition to the great prices, a portion of sales goes to support the Virginia Living Museum.

The Virginia Living Museum is a great outing while school is out for Christmas.  Parents and children of all ages can find so much to do there (especially on a rainy or cold winter day in Hampton Roads).

Animal Art at Virginia Living Museum