Wednesday, April 28, 2010

New Home

This is a view from my yard in Maripaso. On the other side of those distant hills is the edge of Yosemite.
One of my future painting spots!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Old Stuff

While moving I'm comming across lots of stuff that's been packed away ... here's one that cracks me up -- mostly because of the title.
The Clumsey Ballerina
I was painting along, intense in my work ... when I noticed how it could be interpreted ... and just started busting up. Hope it works the same for viewers; I'm going to put it up in the gallery today, as it's never been seen in public yet.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Balsom Root

We wrapped up on the still life today of the balsom root. Not sure about the painting, really, but I think that I learned a lot this time -- I hope so, anyway.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Living in the Light

It feels great to sleep while it's dark out ... and enjoy this wonderful spring weather durring the daylight ... after two and a half years of living in the dark, working third shift!

I was honored again to share Del's studio - working on some still life paintings. Those crazy Balsom Root blossoms are not very still for a still life!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Play Misty for Me

When Carole first sat down to the piano to pose for me she began playing "Misty". Wow, a conduit straight back to my childhood in Texas ... 1967 ... when that song was all over the AM dial (that's all we had back then). We even named a kitten for that song. [In rehtrospect, we should have named her Frizbee ... or taught her not to go out into the street in the first place. And so it goes.]

This was not the easiest painting that I've ever worked on, that's for certain. The room was full of light ... warm, cool, reflected, and integrated (okay, I made that last one up ... but it fits some of the light that I just couldn't identify).

While I was standing there painting, the light was changing rapidly, crawling over furniture, floor, and figure, due to the southern exposure. What was really perplexing to me, though, was the window itself. Was ist diese Farbe? Warm oder Kalte? Because the sun was striking directly on das Fenster, I figured that it was warm ... but it didn't look warm ... didn't look cold either ... and how could it be cold? Oy. Gott im Himmel, was ist das?!

So, when I first painted it, I made it just slightly warm. It looked okay, but with the figure being warm, I thought that if the window were slightly cool it would give the whole room a warmer feel by contrast. I think it works. It looks better to me, anyway.

I hope that the couple who commissioned this like it. In spite of the struggles (and, well, maybe because of them) it was a fun piece to work on.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

The Brilliant Skull

Del and I worked again today for a little while, finishing our painting arrangement with the theme of "Vanitas" - as described in the previous post.
Del, working.
Unfortunately, today was the one day that I didn't bring my camera along, so I don't have a picture of Del's final painting -- I also thought that it would be nice to put a short video of him at work on here ... guess not this time.
Here's a look at how mine turned out. It can use a little more work. Hopefully I'll be able to do that before I leave.
So much to do in the next week or two.
I think that maybe I'll just title it "Ecclesiastes 1:14" -- make everyone go digging for their long ignored Bibles. 'Course, that probably won't work ... not when they can whip out thier iphones and google it. How the world changes. I wonder what Solomon would say about that. Would he still say that all was vanity and vexation of spirit?
So, too, sad to say, are our paintings. Of that we have little doubt. As artists, though, we have no choice but to paint.


"... Vanity of vanities; all is vanity," Soloman proclaims in Ecclesiastes 1:2. He goes on, expanding on this theme in this much quoted sermon, driving home the point that whatever we do here on this earth turns to dust. "I have seen all the works that are done under the sun and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit." (Ecclesiastes 1:14) What an upbeat guy.

You don't need to run and find your Bible thismorning, it's okay, this is not a Sunday school project and there will be no collection plate passed (although, if you feel so compelled, I'll give you my mailing address and you can mail in the $5).

Back in the old Dutch Baroque period, one of the popular themes for paintings was "Vanitas" -- Latin (I think) for Vanity. In these works of art one found all of the symbols of knowledge, accomplishment, time, and the brevity of the life of man (usually symbolized by a human skull).

Del and I decided that we would pay tribute to this theme ourselves, so we donned some Dutch wardrobes and set up a fun little still life.

Del, Painting. Okay, so, I lied about the Dutch wardrobe.

It was nice to work with Del again and the paintings are comming along just fine. You'll have to tune in tomorrow to see the final results, as we have yet one more day of work on our project.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Und jetzt bin ich arbeitslos

What is the distinction between jobless and full time artist? Hopefully, for me, it will mean more money, more time, and a greater feeling of self actualization.

For now, though, it means more time to pack.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Jewel of the Inland Empire

I was up on Rimrock Drive the other day (on my way to taking stuff to storage). They've put a gate across the road now so that people don't continue to trash one of the nicest places in the area. Now you can walk and ride your bike or run without cars going by ... maybe it will cut down all of the high school parties up there ... and the broken bottles, etc.
It was very late in the day and the sun was fairly glinting off of the buildings in town. Sparkling like a diamond. I'll miss this town.

I would still like to do a painting from up there. I've got to find the right time of day for it, though. The evening is beautiful ... but the light is too direct. Maybe I'll figure it out before I go.

I saw spring's first flowers up there, too.