"Everybody knows a work of art takes at least an hour!" Lucy to Linus, (Peanuts)

FineArtViews Painting Competition - Twice in the Fav 15%

http://canvoo.com/boldbrush/badge/13203 three times selected for FAV15%, Fine Art Views Bold Brush Painting Competition

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Boxed In

       Now that I have committed to having Michael Ward, a wonderful model, come to my studio to pose for me next week I have found a bit of a fire under me to get ready for this occasion. I am actually planning and working toward the series I have wanted to do for a very long time and not being concerned about how long it will take or where it will be exhibited...or even if it will be exhibited. I am still scarcely touching brush to canvas but having the set up I need is going to change that. I have been building lately...a big box.

       It started with building a small model, scaled to hold the little plastic artist's figure that I have had hanging around for three or four years. I used to have one of those wooden artist's models but I think I gave it away. Anyway, I made the little box and put the figure inside and experimented with different ways to light it.

       This is just one of the things I tried. When I felt satisfied that this might work I asked Michael, the human model, what size box he would feel most comfortable with. I originally wanted it to be 30 inches square but we decided on 40 inches in the end. I spent a couple of days trying to figure an inexpensive method for building this box; I really don't want to spend money on real wood and have it carpenter perfect - it's going to be dismantled when I'm through with it. I have some large sheets of heavy cardboard and I cut two sides to the 40" size, reinforced one side with square dowl sticks (which I use for stretching silk when I silk paint), just taped on (with lots of tape!) and taped a large piece of cardboard over the top. I put together the 8" high model stand that I had used for posing Samanda last spring, covered it in soft velveteen that I had from an old futon cover and placed the box on top. I had to  support it by tying it to the stairs in the center of my studio, put a spotlight low behind the set up, and draped a cloth over the back.  The next day I decided I didn't like the dark look; the colour of the cardboard, the purple of the floor cloth, or the dark background cloth. I spent yesterday taking everything apart, moving the models stand to a better position, and covering the inside of the box in white fabric. 

       Now it's beginning to look right and it is surprisingly sturdy and easy to move around in. I can practise lighting from different angles and may even cut a hole in the side to light it that way. I sure hope all the tape holding everything together holds up for the next week. I really don't want to have to reconstruct this thing again.

       Reminds me a bit of those Primal Scream boxes that were all the fad about thirty years ago.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Studio time actually beginning to be productive

     Returning to painting mode. Worked on this a bit on tuesday when I went to the art group and then finished it today. At least it feels done enough that I can move on. That's what studies are good for, trying things, making yourself put brush to canvas, and finding out what's going to work and what isn't. I have no vested emotions here but I do have a possible buyer, which is always nice!

     Speaking of buyers, I got a message asking about purchasing the "Lisa" painting yesterday and it sounded pretty good but I have become so skeptical and cynical that I didn't trust it. Good thing. Today the person completely ignored my specifications for payment and shipping etc. and tried to tell me how he wanted to do things 'cause he's on his way to India on a business trip and then moving to Johannesburg and needs the painting "quickly" and wants his shipper to contact me, etc., etc. Bells, whistles, red flags. It's a scam, I'm pretty certain. Ah well. 

       The model I want to use has been back in touch and I think we are going to be getting together fairly soon. He has some stuff that could help me with my thoughts for posing him...being an artist himself and having worked with so many great professional photographers he knew exactly what I meant when I put my ideas to him. Getting started on a major project would be wonderful so I am feeling more hopeful. I don't want to go into details about any of this yet...don't want to take away its power or jinx it. I have a tendency to just tell everybody everything and often to my detriment. When it starts to happen I can get all Chatty Kathy about it. Hey, I'm thrilled to even HAVE any ideas about anything these days.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Where's a "Clapper" when you need one?

        It's official. I've fallen in a slump and trying very hard to get up! A hand clapping "Clapper" would be a nice thing to have right now...send for help. But, I actually contacted a model I have wanted to use for quite some time to see if he would be willing to make a trade with me; modeling in exchange for some art. I think he will be ok with it. Great model. I need some good inspiration right now. Then I came across a blog today that really helped:

Marla has an interesting take on things. I could use more of an interesting take on things these days. Thanks, Marla. I don't even know you, but thanks.

We've had rain and snow and a bit of ok almost sunshine. It's getting darker earlier. I have no ambition. I am actually COOKING a lot these days. I hate to cook. Trying out a bunch of new vegan recipes. Most are actually delicious and intriguing so that's good. It keeps me from thinking about all the painting I'm not doing. 

I have a student now. She came two weeks ago and is coming again this thursday. I set up some stuff for her to work from. Telling somebody else to draw and paint might get a fire built under me.

Tomorrow I am going to pull myself together, get out of the house by 8am and get down to the art group session, which I have been missing week after week. Even if only one other person is there it will help. I need some connection. Bob is great but he doesn't draw or paint and has some trouble relating to this problem I'm having. The three dogs are great too, but they don't draw or paint either. I like being alone, quite a lot, but not THIS alone. Stimulation. Some feeling of enthusiasm that makes me want to get out to this studio to work on some painting every single minute! Where did it go? I've been here before so I figure it will pass...but in the meantime it sucks. 

Think I'll go in and make a stuffed tofu/fake turkey roast.