Simply Simplify

January is almost gone and as usual I am behind! But what's the hurry, right?
Starting the new year, I like to look back at the previous year and then look ahead and plan somewhat for the new year. I tend to over estimate what I can get done reasonably in any given amount of time! Thus it goes. For the upcoming year, I continue to take classes, drawing and panting, as well as a mentorship. Hopefully, I can make some decisions on what to keep and what to leave behind. I have decided my word for the year is "SIMPLIFY!"

The painting below, Closely Woven, was accepted to the Visual Art Society of Texas, 125-Mile juried show. It received a merchandise award from Richeson Art Supply so I am salivating on what colors I want to order!
Closely Woven
20" x 20"

I taught my first class in Oil and Cold Wax in September at Artist's Showplace Gallery in Dallas, Texas and had the best experience. I will teach again in October. This class is "Finding your Voice using Oils and Cold Wax". I am not sure if we continue to search for our voice in art, but there are many ways to explore what we want to paint. Oil mixed with cold wax as a medium allows us to play and explore, then cover and obliterate, all the while creating scrumptious texture to go back into. It is slightly addictive.

Artist's Showplace invited me to exhibit in the New Beginnings show with two other lovely artists, Jo Moncrief, and Sarah Joseph. the show is up until February 2, 2018. I have 15 paintings in the show, mostly oil with the cold wax and a few with acrylic finished with cold wax. 

I am lucky to have so many opportunities to study with amazing teachers, both locally and away. Michael O'Keefe and Ellen Soderquist offer life drawing classes,  both amazing teachers. Jay Bailey offers sessions as well and I try to go when I can, he is awesome. For my painting classes, I am studying design with Jane Jones through March. Jerry McLaughlin, Oil and Cold Wax book co-author will be here in May, and I look forward to that also. Lisa Pressman is also on my list! (Teacher extraordinaire!) And this past year, I have found an artist I can't wait to study with, Dawn Emerson. Check out her book and videos! 

I also turned my garage into my studio this past year and it has been so great to be outside of the house, both for the mess and for the lack of distraction of working at home. Even if it is just across the driveway! Pictures at another time!

So, back to SIMLIFY. I hope to simplify my work, simplify my processes, clean out unused art supplies and slow down and enjoy each new piece I work on. I need to focus on what I know and not feel like I need to continue to know everything that is new and exciting out there! That is a tough one, there is so much to learn! My list of what to simplify, needs to be simplified! 

Thank you for taking the time to check in with me! Hope you are having a great new year!




Art2Life Nicholas Wilton

I just completed the 12 week on-line course with Nicholas Wilton, quite the forever giving and sharing instructor. So much information and so much to look at, now I must debrief and re-visit many of the ideas and topics. As with any information you learn from other artists and master teachers, it is prudent to actually say, OK, what works for me???? As I grow as an artist, I learn something from each of the classes I have taken, from the teacher and the other students as well. At the end of the day, it is important to spend time examining the things I love about art and what makes it mine. I admire artists who make the bright energetic paintings, but then when I work like this, I end up subduing so much. So, is the hidden me really that energetic wild and crazy person I long to come out? The one wearing the high-heeled bright red, crazy shoes? Of course not, I laugh.... I am the quiet one in the comfortable, red canvas loafers! Close enough to exciting is moving from neutral to red loafers! I am experimenting with how to make that quiet more interesting! These are 9 paintings that are close to finished from the course, 12" x 12" panels. I was surprised that they seem so much alike when they all started out in different ways!



Also here are my shoes! Who knows, that actually is white paint on those heels, and I will try it again! Life is good. It is so awesome being able to spend time with paint or charcoal, in life drawing class with the most motivating instructor, with other artist friends and just friends who never seemingly tire and so patiently and kindly listen to me ramble! And then there all the amazing teachers and mentors that have taken me in. Thanks to all!

What about you? Is the art that is in you the same art that you love?

Walking With Friends

Walking with Friends won one of four Jurors Awards in the Society of Watercolor Artist's 2016 International Exhibition. The juror was Frank Eber, well know watercolor artist and teacher. The show includes work by artists I admire and have followed for a long time. Of course I am humbled and excited just to be included in the show. The exhibition will run until through May 28. 

The painting is watercolor and acrylic on paper. I enjoy painting layers of color, texture and line and then trying to make something come out of the shadows. 
Exhibit Location: Atrium Gallery, Central Library of Fort Worth, 500 W. Third Street, Fort Worth TX 76102 (corner of Lamar & West Third)
The on-line catalog is available here: SWA 2016 International Exhibition


Walking with Friends
22" x 15"
Acrylic on Paper



Just the Three of Us - Silent Auction February 27, 2016

Just the Three of Us
14" x 11"
Mixed Media on Panel
I am honored to have my painting, "The Three of Us, My Echo, My Shadow, and Me" in the show sponsored by Arts for Rural Texas (ARTS) to create funds to support art. The show is presented by ACT (Artists Changing Tomorrow) in which artists contribute a painting for the silent auction held every other year. This is my second time to have a painting in the auction. The auction will take place February 27, 2016.
http://www.act4art.com


The exhibit and silent auction raise funds for ARTS, a 501(c)(3) foundation which applies their funding to expand art education in an effort to offset cutbacks in art education in the schools.
All art donated for the auction can be viewed here.

This painting started with India ink on paper with lines drawn with a pen, string, and more including a stick from the yard. Adding acrylic made the ink turn a dark blue. Then I just played with the figurative shapes that came out of the mingling of the colors. and added more acrylic paint in muted colors. More lines were added with Caran d'ache, which are lovely water soluble crayons, (so much fun to play with), they can have that mind of their own! When the painting was finished, or so deemed finished by moi, I attached it to a Ampersand panel and sealed it, ready to be framed in a black floater frame by the sponsors at ACT.


New Work: Bottle Series Part 1

I have taken a break from posting, but not from painting. It appears my time is spent researching, drawing, and playing with concepts, colors, or really messy paint! When I first started painting, I just knew I wanted to learn to paint, but really didn't have a subject matter in mind. Just paint! After almost 8 years, I have gone in so many directions, it makes even my head spin! What I have decided is only what I don't want to paint, realistic portraits, folk art, and waterfalls! Probably a few more, but I will stop there. What I have decided is to play with series, and boy do I have about 8 of them going right now! And I like to abstract whatever it is! So first I will post some from my bottle series. And sometimes the bottles become people or buildings or whatever. But it has been fun and I have over 40 now on paper with acrylic. These were started from drawings, adding paint and more line work.
Bottles
15"x 22"
Mixed Media on Paper



Red Bottles
11"x 15"
Acrylic and Ink on Paper