"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

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Back After a Long Absence

Peek-A-Boo Pink   oil   12"x12"

          I know, I know. It's been a really long time since I last posted. I'm not sure what happened except that I felt the need to pull back and hibernate a bit this winter. I didn't even post a "see you a bit later" message. That was kind of rude, I now realize. 
           Depression is something I have dealt with most of my life and there are times when it is worse than other times. I wasn't in the depths that I have suffered in the past but just down enough that I didn't even want to look for some light. It made working in the studio quite hard so I had to make myself go out there, at least once in a while, to justify to myself the whole point of having that beautiful building out there, made specifically for the purpose of making art. 
           In early December I was asked to show with another woman who lives in a remote area (much more remote than where I live), Yvonne Maximchuck. She paints in watercolour and acrylic and since I paint in oil we decided to simply call our show "Oil & Water". (I sneaked in a couple of pastels at her suggestion at the last minute!) 
           The Pearl Ellis Gallery in Comox, BC, is a volunteer run gallery and has been around for thirty years, a remarkable length of time for this kind of operation. They used to be housed in the downstairs and around the back by the parking lot room of the building where the Comox Library was. Two years ago a beautiful new library, facing toward the Comox bay, was built and the upstairs space of the old library became available. The town decided to lease the space to the Pearl Ellis Gallery and it has made the fortunes of the gallery so much better. Now they are right on the street for anyone to see and bring it many more people. I had originally not thought much of the gallery, especially being so out-of-the-way; I didn't even know about it for the first few years I lived out here. Then I exhibited in a couple of group shows there and to my surprise I sold some things! That's what I get for turning my snobby nose up at a so-called lesser venue! It taught me a good lesson, the one we all learn as children which is to not judge a book by its cover. I am now a proud ongoing member of the Pearl Ellis and happy to be in this show right now, which goes on until March 3rd. Last weekend we had a reception, meet-n-greet the artists afternoon and had a very good turnout. Yvonne sold a piece and now so have I (see painting above). 
         Below are some photos taken at the meet-n-greet of me and Yvonne, plus from the workshop I gave in the downstairs space last saturday. I called it "The Magic of Cast Shadow" and sent away for a professional type lamp to light the model. Unfortunately there was a lot of ambient light also in the room so my cast shadow was not as strong as I had hoped, but it served the purpose and the eleven students seemed pleased with the class in any case. The only unfortunate occurrence was when one quite elderly lady (who has been a longtime watercolour artist in the Comox area) accidently fell and had to be taken to hospital. She had fractured her pelvis it turns out and that saddened all of us. She is going to be ok according to her friend's report. It gives one pause to consider what growing old will mean for any of us as working artists and all we can do is keep at it with joy in whatever capacity we can and not let infirmity dictate the love of making art if at all possible. I give Dorothy so much credit for signing up for my workshop even though she is old and frail. I took her hand before she had to leave with paramedics and expressed my happiness that she had come and my sorrow that she was leaving early. She said she was also sorry she had to leave early and I could see it in her eyes. I am going to make an art card for her and send it next week.
            Thanks to those of you who have followed me and will continue to do so in spite of my hasty retreat last November. I have missed everyone and I need to return to some discipline regarding this blog. Looking forward to future interactions with you all again!

Me and Yvonne in front of my work

caught offguard at the gallery:-)

some of the students at the workshop

Yvonne and me in front of her work

model for the workshop

my demo painting for the workshop


  1. It was a pleasure to see you again at the reception, Karen. Hopefully my husband can drive me up north this year to visit your neck of the woods. Nice work on the above painting. And it was nice chatting with you. We were at the gallery this afternoon looking at yours and Yvonne's work again.

  2. Hi Karen!... Welcome back... so nice to see you posting again!

    This floral is a vibrant beginning for what I hope ... will be a long run for you! I well know what dealing with depression entails... but I also well know... that keeping my creative spirit prominently and consistently active in my daily life is the best antidote against reoccurring Darkness!

    Good luck with it...

    Good Painting!
    Warmest regards,

  3. beautiful work. I want to know how you pose these bendable humans!!!

  4. welcome back Karen. i've been absent as well so i have a lot to catch up on. this is stunning but then your work always is. just lovely. glad you're better and working. take good care.