Thursday, February 25, 2010


It's funny how life can sideline you when it comes to getting things done. I came down with some sort of cold-flu thing, and even though I had all that motivation to get rolling on my work, I instead found myself laying on the floor and doing nothing but snuggling with my tissue box and reminiscing over the days when I could breath like a normal person.

Fortunately, my head is still in the game. I have a bigger painting that is similar to Alone, but about twice the size - and I'm contemplating really making the reflection stand out like the tree of life symbols do, and perhaps a few birds in the branches... we'll see. Anyway, I have plans to work on that today, and if I am able to actually work - I believe I can have this painting finished by the end of the weekend.

Which is good, because I have a joint effort painting with a friend and fellow artist (Chris Edmunds) that I need to work on. Chris plays with perspective and generally just has a lot of fun with his art. This is a picture of the first painting we did together, which is in my own collection:

And now I'm working on something similar (but much larger), for their own collection.

Lastly, I am going to try taking my current enchanted forest series into a pastel colored direction (briefly, because I really enjoy the vibrant striking colors and contrast that I get with the dark blues and purples) for a friend and see how it comes out. She really liked this painting:

(Enchanted, Sold, No prints)

Which was actually my first venture into my enchanted forest direction. This is where I started, and you can see where it has evolved and shifted into what it is now. I'm not entirely certain I can use metallic paint with the pastel colors, because they really are about the contrast between light and dark. So, I may have to try a few things to see what I can come up with.

Off to my brushes!

Friday, February 12, 2010


When I first started out in art, it was all about "more".  If I started a drawing, and it went wrong, I just flipped to the next page.  I started over.  It didn't matter if my bedroom was littered with crumpled papers, because it was OK to start over.  But that was only pencil and paper. 

When you graduate to something like paint, you start risking more. It's expensive.  So, you start conserving.  Planning.  You spend more time envisioning than you do actually working on a piece.  You can literally sit around all day, and when someone says you did nothing that day you can argue that they're wrong.  Because while your body was still, your mind was at work sketching, and erasing, and layering, and chipping, and starting over a hundred times until you had it right.  Or at least going in the right direction, enough so that you could actually approach the canvas without guilt and worry overcoming you.

It's a process that not everyone uses, but many of my friends do.  I can honestly say that out of the last hundred or so canvases I have begun, only two have been a loss.  Not every painting was worth hanging, but they were as I intended at the time... for the most part (art isn't something you can just dictate.  It's organic.  It's sort of slippery, like water.  You can try to direct where it goes, but at times it simply has a mind of its own.)  So, I restricted myself to only paintings I knew would generally come out right.

By another seemingly unrelated turn, for many years I worked only in black and white.  Color is the first thing every person reaches for, but it's far harder to use correctly than working in strict shades of gray.  I didn't touch color for the longest time, not because I didn't love it, but because I was afraid of it.  Of creating something worthless, or worse - costly and worthless.

I'm not sure why, but for the longest time I have struggled with creating junk.  It doesn't matter that no one would care.  That making a whole slew of junk might even be a good thing, a necessary process sometimes.  It is... wasteful. 

Lately, I have found myself wound into tighter and tighter circles, holding myself back. The best example would be my online gallery; in all those paintings there is one that looks like a game of "which one is not like the other?"  The boy sleeping on the moon, while different from the other works, is not unique.  I seem to have two styles, one that works for contemporary endeavors, and one that runs just a wee bit on the cliche side. 

And let me tell you, cliche can be fun as hell.  I have written and illustrated a children's book, on a project for charity that was unfortunately dropped due to a change in program. The children's book gave me the latitude to create on that level.  It was going to go somewhere, so it was acceptable to play around and make goofy kitsch-like compositions. 

I have had many people ask why I don't sell postcards and calendars of my contemporary work.  The answer is that I just never got around to looking into it.  But lately?  I've been looking into it, and I am happy to say that I'll soon be offering those requested cards and calendars featuring my work. 

But as I was thinking about the calendar, I realized that I may have to do two.  The reason being not that I just have so much work, but because I would really like to play.  To make pictures with a calendar in mind, no matter how cheesy (I love making Christmas pictures, for example) would be a lot of fun. 

I think I have forgotten how to play with my art.  It's been enjoyable, but... well, I suppose it's like being a grown-up verses being a kid.  As a kid, you get recess and the opportunity to run around like a lunatic and hang off of things like monkey-bars without feeling any embarrassment (assuming you don't fall on your head, which I did do a time or two.)  As an adult, you can still run about - but you are expected to do it with dignity, to find a sport, or activity generally accepted as a "hobby" by the grown-up-playground at large.

Maybe this will only create a whole lot of junk.  Trash, even.  It could happen.  But I recently sold a painting, I'm already in the green (or the black?) this year business-wise, and I could take the money and set it aside for "junk", and not feel guilty about my economic success with my business.

Yes, I think I will.  It really is time for a recess.  Long past time. 

Besides, I always have the fire pit in the back yard if anything truly hideous results from my efforts. 

Monday, February 8, 2010


We finally relaunched the website for

It looks pretty much the same, but there is no flash animation involved anymore, and every picture takes you to a specific page with the painting you wanted to see on it. 

It's rather ironic how backing off the fancy technology is actually the better choice for a slicker website design for an art gallery.  The upside to all of this is that the site is easy for me to edit and update with new paintings as they are finished.  All in all, it should take a lot less time to load for everyone else, be a lot easier to look at what you want to (and easier to purchase, although contact through email will still have to happen.)

I'll still post here... as a matter of fact, I am contemplating restarting my art-blogging.  Of course, life always seems to creep in, because that's just who I am.  And frankly?  Art without life influencing it is pretty darn boring anyway.