Tuesday, January 29, 2013

My best efforts have not succeeded!

I can't avoid the truth: I have fallen into painter's block once again.

Despite my increasingly vain attempts to maintain momentum, over the past ten days I have become less able to produce paintings I like. I go in to the studio and put paint on canvas and putter around and finally go home with nothing new to show, and only minor tweakings accomplished.

Getting into a routine again is very hard. The disruption posed by the holidays slid into obligations here and gatherings there, and finally I'm free to work, but incapable to producing anything good.


On the plus side, today I was able to pet Paws. Turns out he really likes being stroked.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Through the Looking Glass...

Okay, remember my last post with all those English Gardens? Below you can find the "English Garden Through the Looking Glass" series.

The little bit of snow on the ground and the very cold weather kept us all inside for the day yesterday, so today I was ready for action - in to the studio and put out the paint and plugged in the ipod and went to town...

To me, they all look sort of like landscapes with water running through them - the first obviously a river, perhaps with a waterfall, and the last (at least to me) more like a sea rushing up on a shore.

Took the day off yesterday. Just hit the wall with obligations and personality conflicts and projects upcoming, and stayed home to read and vegetate with the new family:

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Very productive day!

Some days, everything just falls into place - not that all of these will survive as is, but still...

The English Garden series, 2013:

and "The Musician" on paper:

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Sometimes, the process...

Usually, my paintings are swiftly completed, leaping from brush and knife onto the canvas. Done in one sitting, and photographed while still wet, for the record.

But sometimes, a painting stalls, doesn't work out, leaves me dissatisfied. I still, generally, take a picture at the end of the day if I think it might be done. Looking at the photo on the computer is a great way to determine if the paintings should stand as is or if it needs minor or major work the next day.

Occasionally, one canvas will go through many major changes, sometimes retaining elements of the previous, sometimes retaining only the texture of the underlying dried paint.

Here is one that was difficult - from first to last. May be finished now, but only time will tell...

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Road Trips.

Thank you, Lady Bird
Grey lines the sky from side to side,
red leaves, fallen from oak trees in the last big storm,
coat the ground,
dark green needles,
make cloud-like shapes,
dense and dark,
amongst the bare, up-lifted branches of the winter trees,
and on the fields and verges of the road
a yellow-ocher stubble pricks
against a lime-green floor of water-nourished growth.

A long, dreary drive down to Green Hill to pick up my second batch of paintings, of which not a one sold (sigh!). Oh, well. Just one more reality in the life of the independent visual artist...

Down to the Water

The Way Through the Dunes

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Plugging Away

When inspiration doesn't carry me forward, I rely on just plain old hard work.

Today at the studio I took aim at the Outer Banks. In March I will need to take new paintings to both of my galleries on the OBX, and I only have five or six ready to go. So, beaches and oceans and soundsides and sailboats at anchor. Dunes and tall skinny pines and long roads, bordered on one side by dunes and on the other by telephone poles and the salt flats of Pea Island Wildlife Refuge.

Sometimes, too, there is Ocracoke, with its wild ponies and long, uninhabited beaches. The small village at the southern tip of the island is another source of material for paintings.


The Few, the Precious

and on paper:

Sunday, January 6, 2013

No Fair!

Why can't inspiration last?

Just when I get to thinking that I know what I want and how to get it, poof! It's gone!

That field with trees and sky is getting hard to paint now, and I thought I had a subject that would last for a lifetime. But no. Now the fields are getting boring, too picky, too fussy, and the tree line is not interesting enough - the trees have become too solid and discrete - no fun edges and overlapping colors. The sky - almost always light if not white in color. Originally, I'd thought I could vary the colors wildly. Make the sky purple and the trees yellow and the field red and green or red or green. But most of that didn't work. I got perhaps five paintings - maybe six - out of the field, and now I'm right back where I was, sorting through old photos trying to get inspiration, sigh.

Anyway, I suppose it's somewhat like the change of seasons. If all you had was paradise for weather, you'd get bored and wouldn't appreciate it after a while (at least I will keep telling myself that as I struggle back to the studio tomorrow).

Wish you were here...

Nectar of the Gods


Thursday, January 3, 2013

Cold outside, warm inside.

The boiler is working well, the studio is warm. Let the wind howl outside (and it does!) and the windows rattle, inside the paint is flowing and the paintings are being painted.

New artists in the building today. Old friends back from the holidays. Feels like a good season for some hard work.

Conversation between the Earth and the Sky

Rapahannock Falls