Sunday, May 30, 2010


At last. After 25 hours of painting, she is presentable.
Early one spring morning I was out with the camera. It had rained the night before so everything was drenched and sparkling in the morning sunshine. I was standing inside the canopy of the Moonfire Japanese Maple just to see what could be seen from there. The  foliage  was ablaze with translucent fire and reflected violet. This is the sort of subject that I really enjoy painting...though I'd starve to death if I needed to make a living from it!
11x15" Wallis Professional Sanded Paper, Pastels

The challenge to this piece was it's complexity. I did have to simplify some, and to invent a couple hands of foliage to fill in where I omitted visual chaos. I knew that once all sketched onto the sand paper, it would be hard to keep up with what the lines 'meant' so I outlined with red, violet, or green pastel pencil as I went. This proved to be very helpful. I knew that 'value' was going to be a real challenge for this piece. #1 because the darkest and highest contrast objects were in the foreground and these were 'cool' colors #2 because behind them were flaming reds. It's just the nature of even a dark red to be brighter than any blue or blue green.

Thought it might be interesting to show the reference work. First is the original snapshot. Second is the crop from that original that I used as the inspiration.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Sawnee Art Association - 3-D Show

I joined my local artists association recently, Sawnee Art Association. They put on a lovely little '3-D' show this weekend in the historic Brannon-Heard House in down town Cumming, Georgia. What is a 3-D show? That was my first question.. 3-D to 'me' sounds like holograms and funky movie glasses. 3-D is the art of making a 2-D image 'look' 3-D.

Apparently I am mistaken. 3-D is what 'Fine Art' is of the wall. I understand the need for a descriptive label, but if you ask me, this one is awkward and does not communicate to the 'non-art' community the nature of the show. And don't get me started on the snootiness of 'Fine Art' as a label that means 'paintings and photography'. There. I've said my piece and I am well aware that the Gods of art nomenclature are taking no notice of my pedestrian opinion.

I did say it was a lovely show. It featured over 30 artists in pottery, sculpture, glass, fiber, gourd, metal, jewelry, and  wood turning and scroll work with elegant live music playing in the background. Here are some photos from the show. I don't know any of these artists, so I was not being partial...just looking for interesting photos and to show a bit of the space.