Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Part three: Humps.

The Lady and I spent some time at the Oregon Flock and Fiber Festival last summer. She went for the yarn, I went for the ungulates. I took a lot of pictures. There was a particularly handsome 9 month old Bactrian camel there, and I spent several minutes trying to capture his cavalier attitude. The title of this painting is "He can hear your cell phone before it rings." Seconds before my cell phone rang, as I was standing in front of him, he turned to look at me, and bellowed the most disturbing noise. Sorry, dude. I'll turn it off next time.

Part Two. The letter "b".

Remember this? No, i haven't forgotten. And just to make sure I keep working on what is sure to be a many-years long project, I have written all of the animals on my kitchen wall so I can check them off when I finish each of them. But the Beeeee hee eeez done.
Green Sweat bee: 16x20" acrylic on canvas.

Thump. The last month. Here you go. (part one)

Almost every entry in my journal for the last ten years begins with: "It's been a long time since I wrote, and I will be better from now on...promise..." I don't think you believe me when I say it either, but nonetheless I must dump on you "2008 thus far!!".

There is one missing, my beloved Octopus. He will appear later this year as he is in LA for the season. (And who can blame him?) But first, this is the piece (there's one for every show I do) that was completed within 2 hours of the hang. I usually don't have quite enough pieces for a show so I flurry near the end to get them done. However, even when I do, for some reason I always decide to get ONE LAST piece painted. It's a common affliction, based on a love for deadline-based stress. So what does any self-respecting artist do to fill a gallery space within 24 hours? Take pictures of yourself naked and paint it on a big canvas, of course!!
Its 2x3' acrylic on canvas. The shiny things are pieces of gold cardboard sealed to the background with paint. My plan is to run over the whole thing with lacquer now that it's been photographed.

Next up are two paintings on either side of the same wood block. They were inspired by not wanting to paint something serious. After a while, the detail that I paint can get pretty aggravating. You have to be pretty calm to paint eyelashes and delicate nuances of fur and skin, you know? The first side is a study that I did of a realistic painting. I gave myself five minutes to meditate, five minutes to pencil it out, and 45 minutes (one episode of BSG) to paint it. Then i had to stop. On the back is the fly, an experiment with gloss gel. It's fun to play with.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Message in a Bottle

The sun came out today for a few moments, like the friend you invited to your party but didn't anticipate coming. My classmate Mary and I took a trip to the zoo. It was soggy and 39 degrees--and the zoo was empty save a class of bilingual elementary kids. It was very placid, and turned out to be an ideal day for photography. The light was perfect and the animals were calm. Except for the meerkats, who were busily digging for worms in the damp soil.

I felt very fortunate to get so intimate with an Amur Leopard. There are only about 38 of these beauties left in the wild, making them far more common in zoos. As saddening as it is to see animals in captivity, I feel like its better to preserve them in some form rather than letting them go extinct. It's strange to think that some of the animals I have painted may only be in zoos within my lifetime. We're just not very good at sharing, are we?
I promise to update with my latest paintings soon. I have two nudes and two animals nearly completed.