Be the Art. Live the Story--THE BLOG
As an artist, I look to tell stories. In the story of Aquarius, I started by looking at forest scenes to see what stories they invoked. I found a photo that Joe del Tufo took that seemed like it would provide a good stage for a story. He already had a story he was telling in his piece, and I didn't want to duplicate that. I looked at a series of photos I had taken for my daughter's graduation and noticed a similar quality of light. I merged the two photos in Photoshop and removed the figures from Joe's photo. Much of my artistic process happens in Photoshop. It is where I "sketch"...
Aquarius is a painting I recently completed for a new series I am doing for my November 2021 show. I had been painting forest scenes as religious art. My (2017) exhibit was entitled, "Altarpieces." I was trying to convey spirit, reverence, and awe in the abstracted scenes I painted. Since that time, we, as a society, have been through some pretty heavy happenings: 45's presidency, Me Too Movement, protests against police brutality and for Black Lives, COVID...
Recently, my 8-year-old niece came to visit for what has become an annual week of "Camp Waldheim." (We call our home Waldheim which is German for Wood Home. We are the Woods living next to the woods in a wood home. It fits.) Since the beginning of COVID, I have read to H over FaceTime. We have read 14 novels including all the Harry Potter books. Camp Waldheim is a time when we can be interact in person, play with art supplies, take interesting field trips, and check out the natural world. This year's activities included going to NYC by train to the newly opened Harry Potter Store for shopping and butter beer, tie-dying shirts, marbling paper using shaving cream, bookbinding (a character in the Inkheart series we are reading is a book binder), going to the zoo and local gardens, making cards, and hoprocking in Naaman's Creek in the Arden Forest. (Hoprocking is what the natives call it. The rest of the population argues that it is rock-hopping).
People have been asking me what medium I recommend for prints of my artwork, since I am now offering quite a few options now. The answer is a frustrating " It depends." If you would like the art for a large wall, you might want to get an option that comes ready-to-hang, rather than to have to get it framed.
I have written a new blog post for INWilmington. I interviewed Sara Crawford of The Original Coloure Collective to find out about their initiatives to bolster Black artists and minority owned businesses in the wake of the pandemic. Crawford, along with photographer André Wright formed the collective in January and have been using photoshoots to showcase all the talent and ingenuity we have in Wilmington. I love talking with creative people. I get inspired. It's one of the best gigs ever. Check out the blogpost.
And the Power of Limited Choices
In 2006, I quit my day job to write and paint. Here is the kicker. Though I went to art school, I'd never been much of a painter. I had graduated with concentrations in fibers and metals. I didn't know what to paint, and every time I went to the art supply store or looked in a Dick Blick catalog, I became so overwhelmed with choices that I invariably bought nothing. Experimented with nothing. Did nothing-- but aspire to be a painter. Enter my dear friend and neighbor, Marsha. . .
A Prima Vista (At First Sight)
A prima vista (at first sight), my paintings seem to have little in common with altarpieces of the Italian Renaissance. I get it. The two seem unrelated. Why would I even make that claim? . . .
THE STORY BEHIND THE PAINTING . . .
I have been painting forest scenes as altar pieces ever since moving to Arden, DE, eight years ago. My inspiration for this series has been a combination of living on the edge of Sherwood Forest, hiking every Sunday with my hiking group Strange Adventures (it has become our sabbath), and traveling to Italy several times over the last 6 years where I saw many--I mean many--churches and altarpieces. . .