What are you doing in the studio these days? People who don’t paint expect a list of works to roll of your tongue. My answer tends to throw them a little. I say simply, “I’m practicing”. If I were playing a musical instrument, even someone who’s tone deaf would nod knowingly and mumble “Oh yeah, huh”.
Musicians and visual artists even have similar vocabulary. When I took piano lessons growing up, theory was a separate class and there I learned about changing the key, composition and ear training. This augmented the physical practice of scales and chords, which trained my hands to find the right notes. If I made a mistake in practice, I only offended those within earshot and so my work evaporated into the atmosphere.
Learning to paint has eye training to assist in the production of the right visual notes. Colour chords and keys depend on the hand eye coordination too. The record of the work is often incomplete but records the struggle nonetheless and so is worth keeping but not showing to anyone else necessarily! Often, it disappears into the waste basket.
Lately, I’ve decided to change my palette; the group of pigments that produce key and colour chords and to work on composition. As is traditional, I practice the compositions of artists I admire and have done so many times over the years. ( This one is inspired by Ian Roberts).
That’s what I’m posting today, one record of the changes that will eventually take their place in new work.
This little piece appeared on a Christmas card I created a few seasons ago. 2016 has been a busy year with big changes and this year finds me unpacking and setting up my new studio and waiting for working lights to be put in. That is happening today. Yesss!!!
So here is a souvenir of Christmas past. It also reminds me of my former home. The congregation of small birds, depicted here in ink and wash, used to meet and eat at the bird feeder, just outside the patio doors.
This post goes up with a message for all to have a wonderful Christmas and holiday season– with food and friends of course!
As the title suggests, RV living has reached an uncomfortable quiet zone. The time of rushing around and making decisions has finished and the waiting has begun. Waiting for the house to be move-in ready and then the back half of the storm–the storm cloud containing the belongings from my former life and the physical challenges of moving.
On a more literal level, we watched, waited and prayed while Hurricane Nicole targeted Bermuda and climbed to Category 4 before slamming into the island, at a reduced level 3. Not much difference between them we learned. I learned a great deal about the blessed geography of this island, with its high cliffs and natural reefs. We took comfort in the strong infrastructure of their buildings and their level of preparedness but nothing can take away the fear of knowing that a loved one (in this case our son) is beneath that swirling mass of unrelenting wind. So thankful to finally hear he was ok, I responded with this gouache piece in my journal…therapy for me and a record of waiting and watching.
An onshore breeze is creating a playground for the gulls. Normally all sitting facing into the wind, they have left the beach to soar, circle and dive. They are graceful in flight and mesmerising to watch. These are any gulls on any beach anywhere and gave me the perfect chance to sit and stare and be amazed.