Monday, June 23, 2014

around here lately...

so the living room reno is quasi done.  my favorite space right now in the entire house.  it now feels like me.  painted white floors, grey walls, sheep skin... sigh.  my happy place.   this in 'my' hangout when i want some alone time.  kids, dogs, husbands are not allowed in here.  ever.  after our vacation i will finish the dining room, same white floors, and grey walls.  then on to the upstairs redecorating.

yes, you're seeing that right, it's a sam harris vinyl on the lower table!! damn i love the 80's

i'm also getting back into the groove of painting.  i had just about given up on the whole damn thing....  i think i was overwhelming myself with colour, and becoming absolutely obsessed with getting it 'right'.  so, i stepped back and went back to black and white.  i read somewhere, that back in the day, a master artist wouldn't let his protege paint with anything other than black and white for an entire year... and only then, would they be permitted to explore colour.  so, yup.  that's what i'm doing.  and i'm thrilled with the results.  not to mention i'm painting super big.  bigger than i've painted before.  i eventually want to paint faces on to huge canvases, like chuck close kinda huge canvases.  there's something so arresting about being met with this huge image, eyes staring back at you.  it's jarring and that's the effect i want it to have.  i lvoe the drama, which is also heightened by the black and white.

100% fabriano watercolour paper, 170 lbs, acrylic paint

the only real problem is these images don't belong to me.  i got them from the internet, so i can't really do much with them but practice.  my goal is to photograph the women in my neighbourhood.  yup.  i want to photograph real women, everyday, work-a-day, stay-at-home-moms, coworkers, friends, family.  photos of real women.  so much more personal, and more fun to paint.

wonder if i'll get any takers.

acrylic paint, 100% watercolour paper, 340lbs
 funny though, how a few images i've already painted out get painted again and again...  like the one above.  it haunts me.  this must be about the 4th time i've painted her out, wonder if when i'm finally done this huge 22" x 30" piece, i will have it out of my system.  finally using my larger sheets of fabriano 340 lbs watercolour paper.  it's absolutely divine to work on.  somehow i haven't managed to capture what it is that i want from it.  perhaps i'm still searching for it's meaning.  kind of reminds me of me.  the look of her rounded cheeks, her turned down lips, and those sad eyes.  what is her story... it's compelling and it pulls me in each time i look at her.

that's how i feel about this image below as well.

i've painted this one at least two other times.  here i go again trying to capture what it is that i'm so intrigued with.  who are they? what's their story? such beauty in their oddness.  cute yet slightly creepy.  reminds me of the photographs of diane arbus.  particularly this one.  i find so much beauty in the odd, in the quirky, in the scars and imperfections.  it's those qualities that i find so beautiful and am inspired to paint.  how incredibly banal it is to paint pretty magazine worthy faces.

i had to laugh, the other day my 16 year old nephew, Max walked by my studio and I had all of my pieces still up, in varying states of completeness, and he shuddered and said, 'ohhh, your paintings give me the shivers..., they're, i don't know.... weird'.

and well, that was the best most compliment he could have given me.  it's that kind of state of arrest-ness that i want my pieces to possess.  i want you to stop and feel something.  even though at first it might seem like the only word you can come up with is 'weird'...  but hopefully it'll spark some inner dialogue within you.. perhaps it's jarring because we see some of our own self in these images.  the self that is unsure of the face and body we live in.  feelings of alone-ness in our uniqueness, in our wanting to feel 'normal' and accepted and loved.

everything we do, everything we say, everything........ doesn't it all just boil down to wanting to feel normal, loved and accepted?

on my bookshelf
so, in case you're wondering what i'm reading these days.... well this is it.  diving into the lyrics and music of nick cave.  he's one strange puppy.  and well, if you haven't guessed it, i'm very much into strange... :)

i'm off this Friday, driving down to my beloved atlantic ocean.  back to my heaven on earth paradise, wells beach in maine.  we're road tripping it again cause driving for 9 1/2 hours with 4 adults, and two kids is always fun... :) can't wait to stop at the big moose in vermont for a pulled pork sandwich.  mmmmmmmmm-m.

see you on the flip side my friends.

1 comment:

Michelle Shopped said...

There was a photograph series I've seen in recent years -- it was nude B&W photos of breast cancer survivors, and they were beautiful. Man, I bet you could capture the pathos and triumph of those women.