Monday, February 27, 2012

Thanks everyone the nice comments about my recent cleaning product paintings, kind of a funny subject matter, I know, but what the hey. I was working on another painting last night, at about 2 am when I noticed my dog was breathing strange. I kinda freaked out and made an emergency call/trip to the vet. Long story short, blood tests and xrays reveals that she has cancer, with a few days to live. 12 years ago my husband (boyfriend at the time) and I were on our way to a friend's wedding in Long Island and stopped off at an animal shelter on the way. We saw a little week-old puppy, surrounded by a crowd of admirers. We edged into the crowd and when she passed our way we took ahold and never let go. She has been an inextricable, joyous part of our everyday life since, our best buddy, our constant companion and playmate, our "only child", as we have no kids. I fear the dark inevitable void coming my way, and know I can't paint my way out of it. Hopefully painting will help me around it, tho, it is my loyal buddy too. It has calmed and soothed me thru the darkest of times, always helped me cope.  For now, I had an impulse to share this with to you, my fellow painters and art supporters. Please don't feel obliged to respond, that wasn't my intention... I just appreciate your listening. Her name is Mimi,  a loyal loving friend for what seems like a lifetime. Death is a part of life, and life goes on. Sharing helps. Thanks for letting me do that.

Mimi and The Girls (our 3 polish chickens)

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Partners in Grime

OMG Mr. Clean is still around! Where have I been? (clearly not spending much time in the cleaning aisle at the grocery store). He's still looking great after all these years... how does he do it?  I found him hiding out under the bathroom sink at my studio building and quietly abducted him and his pal AJAX. So much for clean living - nothing is safe around me...  

Partners in Grime
Oil on Board, 8x8" Price on request

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Blues Brothers

These colorful cleaning agents don't get much use around my studio for what they are supposed to do, but they have caught my eye many times as lovely models, begging to be painted, so I finally did. Now the Comet, 409, and Pine Sol will probably be nagging me to pay attention to them too...

Blues Brothers
Oil on Board 8x8" Price on Request

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Rochester workshop

"...On the road again".... I hope I won't be singing that tune anytime soon. I've been on the road since February 7, and finally pulled in my own driveway last night at 9 PM. My days and nights were spent teaching at colleges and art associations in several upstate NY cities, then spending a few days recently with my parents in Syracuse, NY. The first thing I did when I got home, to wind down and relax, was pull out my trusty paints and push color around. Ahhhh.... this is my idea of "home".
I'm posting a picture from the last workshop I taught in Rochester NY. They were a great group of gals to work with, and some of them are showing off their 15 minute paintings in the photo...they didn't believe it could be done. Trying out acrylic paint and using big brushes was a new experience for many of them, especially the watercolorists - but they caught on quickly! I provided all the paint, so there was no excuse to skimp. Thick paint, fat brushes, little time, big fun!

Pitcher and Tangerine
9x9" Acrylic on Paper, Price on Request

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Tangerine Reflections

I just returned from a trip to Rome. Don't turn green with envy, I'm talking Rome New York, and Albany and Utica, where I was cordially invited to present my work, lecture and demo. The Romans are awesome folks (as are the Albanians and Uticans) and have been invited back to teach a more extensive painting workshop. Saturday I leave for Rochester NY where I will be speaking at R.I.T., Nazareth College, and to several local Art Groups, then teaching a workshop in "How to Paint Fast, Loose and Bold with Acrylics". All this hoopla and meeting other artists is great but ... as every artist knows, we just want to stay put and paint!

Tangerine Reflections/class demo
Acrylic on Paper 8x9" Price on Request

Friday, February 3, 2012

The Bigger Apple

There is something about these Apple billboards that seems so iconic of our times. I've been an Apple user forever, including when it was such an underdog to Microsoft - and now it's surpassed Exxon Mobil in net worth, who would have imagined. These billboards are everywhere, elegant in their color and simplicity, somehow balancing out the chaotic backdrop.

I painted two versions of this scene on Canal Street, one in oil, the other in acrylics. I was not completely happy with the oils version, too much detail, too much brown, too much like the photo. With the acrylics version I did my homework before picking up the brush and designed my value structure rather than just mimicking the photo. I think it reads better and I felt much free-er with the paint, knowing that my values were worked out.

The Bigger Apple
12x12 Oil on Board (sold)
8x8 Acrylic on Paper
Price on Request

River View

Reuniting with this painting felt like meeting up with an old friend. I painted it in 2008 and it has been sitting in a gallery in CT for several years, or so I thought. The problem with turning your work over to a gallery is that if it doesn't sell right away, it's very easily "forgotten"... the years drag on, the painting hasn't sold and before you know it, the gallery owner has stopped displaying it and forgotten you (and it) exist.
The reality is that the artist would prefer their work to be displayed in a gallery rather than collecting dust in their studio, so they don't nag the owner about getting the piece back. By the time the artist decides to recall their work, things have changed. I had a difficult time getting the owner to acknowledge my phone calls/emails. That's always an unsettling feeling. When I finally did make contact, it turns out he could not find the piece. Hmmm, how does one lose a 44x44" painting? (Easy - sell it!) Long story short, the piece was stashed in a basement somewhere, but was eventually found, and as of yesterday, returned to it's owner. If this story sounds all too familiar to a previous post (NFS), it is because this is an age old problem for all artists. Bottom line, once you hand over your work to a gallery, beware! Know that it can be the last time you see it, and if it sells, there is no guarantee you will see the money. It has happened to me and many other artists more than once, and its a bitter pill to swallow.
OK - now, I need a gallery to move that 44x44" painting which is taking up precious space and collecting new dust in my studio!

River View
44x44" Oil on canvas, Price on request