Thursday, October 10, 2019

New Home

I have completely moved over to my new blog, Life, Art & Chocolate. I am still posting and still painting, so if you're interested, I am over there! I'm also trying to find my artist bloggers as well. Seems a lot of us have gotten quiet!

I hope to see you!

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Life Got Busy

I feel like I am in the final stretch of... something. I haven't done much in my studio but these:

"Twinkle" 8x10, acrylic, Available

"Sky 1", 6x6 acrylic, Available 

"Halo" 6x6, acrylic, SOLD
I find that I am disappointed in myself for not having accomplished more. I have started a few pieces, but in truth I've just been completely buried in my life. We have been remodeling, and it's getting to a desperate point since we have my parents and my son's girlfriend coming out for his high school graduation shortly (to see some remodeling pictures and such, you can pop over to my other more life oriented blog here) I've been painting walls instead of canvas!

My son is graduating high school in two weeks, company is coming (so we have to finish our master bedroom at the very least, so the guest room is open for guests again), my daughter is turning 21 and also moving back to North Carolina... AND we adopted my daughter's roommate's kitten that the roommate wasn't taking care of. Meet Cleopatra (Cleo for short, because it's super embarrassing to say that in person at the veterinarian - even though after meeting her the doctor agreed the name totally fits her!)

I just couldn't let her go to a shelter (even though they're all no-kill here in Vermont.) She's the sweetest, cutest, tiny little thing with six toes on each paw so she's a polydactyl, and suspected Maine Coon, but we shall see. My old boy, Socrates (also a Maine Coon, and about 16 years old) is a little huffy about having THREE extra cats after being the only one for so long. However, he's a gentle giant and just moping rather than acting out. I'm trying to snuggle him when I can. He's still my boy (even though Cleo sleeps every night curled into my neck or on my chest at the moment. Cuteness overload, people!)

But I miss my studio. I miss feeling like I have done something with my time that was for ME but also productive in a way that I have something to show for myself. I want to become someone who is producing something almost every day (or at least making great headway!) I have found my self-worth is tied heavily to my art, and I feel a bit of pain not having anything to show for months having passed. Maybe that's silly, given so much is going on, but it's my truth. I NEED to paint.

We all have things that are tied to our self-worth, what are yours?

Life will be crazy for the month of June, which also includes actual contractors showing up and ripping out our kitchen (the only project that's just too much for us to do it ourselves) in addition to company, graduation, birthday parties, and my daughter moving away. I'm hoping that July brings an opening into my being able to work again. If my son successfully attends college in September, and the remodeling is done by then as well, and nothing else bad happens (as has been for the past couple of years) I will finally have the house and my LIFE back to myself for the first time in over two decades. I'm really looking forward to what that will bring, and hoping to take advantage of it!

Friday, March 22, 2019

A New Blog

I used to blog a lot. I had two other popular blogs back in the day and I eventually shut them down. Thinking it over, I think it really did have a lot to do with Facebook. When I finally did join, 10 years ago, I felt like I was crossing a line I had been fighting for a long time... but everyone was vanishing!

It's hard to remember, but Facebook used to be about people. Actual people posted about their days and what was going on, and it was interesting to check in with folks and say "Hi! Me too!" or whatnot. Then Facebook lost it's ever-loving marbles and turned into an advertising machine. More, memes and political posts became how people chose to check in with one another.

People stopped talking to each other, or about themselves.

Facebook became funny cats and anti-whatevers jammed in between ads all over the place. I don't know how you all feel, but when I go on Facebook now I feel like I'm walking down the Vegas Strip. Everyone is selling something, stuff is flashing in your face, you can't hear the person you're with because everyone is talking - not even caring if anyone else is listening. Ugh.

I miss the days of blogging.

I went out there and looked around in the blogosphere and it is pretty quiet. The majority of blogs out there are about business and marketing, or trying to become mini-Buzzfeeds. The people are missing. *sigh* Remember people? Even the art bloggers have slowly drifted off.

I drifted for a bit too.

Well, it turns out I wasn't the only one feeling this way. A resurgence has started to trickle in with people starting back up blogs (or starting new ones.) I decided to join in, and while I will still have this as my primary art blog, for more general content about life and other things I will be here: (it redirects to if that one doesn't work. Still working out the kinks with this.) I'll touch briefly on art there, but mostly it'll be about my life and thoughts. NO business, selling, opinions masquerading as a news story, etc.

Just me.

So if you're interested, I'm over there now too with the intention to post at least once a week.

And now, back to my regularly scheduled programming! I sat with a blank canvas a couple days ago, wanting to just play. I didn't know how it would go - maybe abstract? But I ended up with this:

"Winter Still", 8x10, acrylic on canvas panel. Available

It's interesting that no direction led me back to something that is far closer to my old style. Hmm. Still, it was nice to finish another piece!

Hope everyone else is up to all sorts of creative things!

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

The Art of LIAFCOL

Not every sketch, canvas, idea deserves the same amount of time in your studio. Yet, when you work professionally in the arts, I think here is a sort of pressure to make every moment count. A sketch? Well, hopefully you're using it as a study or set-up for the next piece you're doing (and maybe someone will want to even buy the concept sketch.) A painting study? Well, could you work a bit longer on it and make it better, more finished (I know it's just a study, but... shouldn't you?)

No. You shouldn't. *I* shouldn't.

But getting my brain wrapped around that fact is incredibly hard for some reason.

I used to think it was because I sell my work, file business taxes, marketing, etc. I'm a full on business (I know people think artists just sit around and create and that's all there is to it, but that's only a part of the business - with BUSINESS being the much harder part of the equation!) I have a business degree, and I actually use it. However, while having that business sense and know-how is helpful, I think it also brings along a sense of obligation to every stroke of my brush. All activity should be in the pursuit of finished product.

And that's just wrong. Not to mention, it's unfair to me as an artist!

With the commissions cleared from my schedule and shows pared down to the bare minimum, I've been able to play with different subject matter and techniques. I'm happy about that, but I'm also trying hard to do better with the art of LIAFCOL! (That's "Leave it ALONE, for Crying Out Loud!!!)

Not every piece should be "done". Not every painting will be sell-worthy, and shouldn't be because that shouldn't be the goal of every painting. Painting as a business has an obligation to sell, but painting as a complete business has an obligation for the artist (supplier) to grow and develop.

We do not learn by doing everything perfectly.

We learn by making mistakes, or half attempts, or just trying one little thing and getting it right (or wrong, and wrong again, and wrong AGAIN! Then right somehow... maybe) so we can add it to our toolboxes and use it on a piece that will be "product" one day.

But I haven't been letting myself do that. I see every canvas as a challenge to finish it, and finish it correctly. How shortsighted and silly of me, really! Or really, not silly enough. I need more silly, more relaxed, more "huh, tried that... didn't work out... moving on!" in my art-life.

So along with exercise, my goal is to work more on LIAFCOL this year!