So the one thing about studio time is it can be glorious, frustrating, obsessive or living hell. Being an artist is one of the hardest jobs in the world. To create something out of nothing knowing that you have to create to support your life and your soul, is a tricky business. There was nothing else in my life I ever wanted to do even when I was bad at it. Any ways enough of the drama here is the work that I have been creating. I have been working in oils. I doubt I will ever go back to acrylics. I am so inspired by Ann Gale's work. I have been studying her a lot lately and here are some pieces that came out of that. My hand is definitely in play here but my muse is Ann.
Jim Dine's work influenced me here with raw emotion. These are charcoal, pastels and oil bars on paper.
Another oil on canvas. Figures in the background keep emerging and floating in the backgrounds.
I have been working on some journaling techniques in my fabric books and sketch books. I have a wealth of old photographs of my ancestors and I include them in this work. I love that I can use the same kind of techniques in both my fabric and sketch books. I am interested so I will be doing more
I finally got to meet Jeanne Oliver! She was teaching at Donna Downey Studio so I knew I had to sign up. It was so much fun and I loved the projects we created. I knew I would really hit it off with Jeanne. We spent many hours talking and I am hoping in the near future to collaborate with her. Here are some of my pieces I created in her class.
I am working on new classes online and workshops. It is all about color and Fancy Lassies. I never really thought I could do whimsical in an original way but through one of my "play days" in the studio I worked on some of these and had so much fun!! Info on workshops and the online course (which will be hosted by Jeanne Oliver) will come soon. Here is what I have so far
And now for the big news! I received a phone call a couple of weeks ago by the owner of Lagerquist Gallery in Atlanta, Georgia in the Buckhead area. Kay Lagerquist Bragg wants to represent me! Her gallery has been going strong for the past 39 years. It was originally owned and run by her mother. They have very loyal patrons and now the children of those patrons are now investing in art at Lagerquist. The plan is that I will work on a series of paintings to be delivered to the gallery at the end of summer. We had a wonderful conversation and after the call I was walking on air. But then the impact of the conversation through me into a panic. I want to make a good impression and work bigger...much bigger. I stepped into my studio and slowly started to plan a strategy which always helps alleviate the anxiety.
I am a very skeptical person and my default position is to look at the worst case scenario. I have my reasons....I don't want to look foolish if things go wrong so when they go right I am pleasantly surprised. I know not the best view of navigating the world! But there have been several experiences that I have manifested almost to the smallest detail regarding my career so my skepticism and glass half empty view of life is cracking a bit and faith and hope is seeping in. So I am going to think big on this one and give it my best shot!
Here are some of the examples of work she loved.
Lastly as most of you know I am a teacher and I have felt lately that what I am teaching needs a reboot. I know I probably shouldn't say this publicly but I need to be genuine to myself and my students. The industry has been changing...there are so many more teachers out there and it is very competitive. This is not to be negative but to state the facts...and by the way competition is a good thing! When I was the new kid on the block I was having a ball. Teaching opportunities were just coming my way with very little promotion on my part. Hey I was working with some pretty awesome materials and techniques. But after doing this for awhile I needed to start approaching this as a business which includes promoting and working on NEW IDEAS. It is hard work always coming up with something new and interesting. I couldn't just keep painting the same old way. Students knew my techniques so to keep them interested I have to keep stretching and experimenting.It is also about keeping me interested too.
I think this life as an artist is a double edge sword. On the one hand it is great to be motivated and grow...be a student of art, which means constantly experimenting and problem solving. Now the other side of that is the overwhelming and tragedy when things go badly and dry spells set in. Here I go with the drama again! Painting "bad" paintings leaves me panicked that it won't come back. Or maybe this is just my way of being an artist. I am sure some have a smoother go at it. I wouldn't change it for anything.