Last December we traveled to NYC for a week before the holidays. It was my first adventure there. One evening, we had plans to meet our friends at Ooviña before a show. A few of us arrived early and the restaurant wasn't open yet. It was freezing outside. We found a hair salon/coffee shop down the street and settled in to have a drink and watch the passersby.
This was a scene I photographed.
This photo intrigued me the way the reflections inside blended with the outside, and I love the dark shape of the man walking by. I took a painting of the ocean I had done last year and turned it upside down, then began an experiment.
As in En Route, I didn't want the cars in the scene. They date it and block the horizon line. But then I also didn't want the buildings. There was something so satisfying about letting the concrete mix with the sea/sky. It didn't feel resolved though, so I let it sit in the background for a few weeks while I worked on another more complicated canvas.
Last week it occurred to me that this horizon needed some fire. It's the second time in recent weeks I've set fire to an object in a painting. I can't tell you why except that it needed to happen. I had this glorious warm color and it ended up causing a burn.
There is a new thing happening in my work. The world is beset by ocean waves and fires and destruction, yet people walk on by or focus elsewhere. It's how I feel about the world right now.
I took a break from painting. It wasn't as rewarding as sewing, so I stayed home and made a quilt. It was tiresome making these paintings that didn't seem useful or good enough to hang. A quilt will immediately be useful...once the Texas weather cools down!
Once the quilt was complete, I decided to just paint. I had this photo from the summer when we spent 20 minutes at a Galveston beach. It became lovely and happily free of the human form. This is a HUGE departure for me. I don't remember the last time I made a body of work without some part of a human or animal body. Maybe never? I usually have little interest in landscape painting or photography. Yet here we are. For now it feels great to have this freedom, movement, and enjoyment in the studio. We'll see where it goes! Until next time...
For the past few months I've had the pleasure of working with The Demigs on their upcoming album. This has indeed been a labor of love, as I think their music is smart and well-crafted.
Above is a promo photo we shot against a plain wall with a long exposure. This idea hit me one day and fortunately they were open to trying it out when I approached them.
Mostly we've been spending a lot of time with the album and CD layouts. Chris Demig made these exceptional collages on canvases painted by Annie Ramage, which we photographed and added the necessary elements. Check out this album cover:
One afternoon, we got together and all took turns writing the title with a stylus on the Wacom tablet. Then, we picked different letters from different handwriting until we had the right look. So this title was done by Alex, Merrie, Demig, Matthew, and me. Add that to this great collage on canvas, and it pretty much sums up the community and attention to detail that is this album.
The Demigs have been working on this double album for over two years. I think it's worth the effort. I have so much respect for the way they make every component of the work of art, from the images to the music.
Check them out at www.reverbnation.com/thedemigs
and come to the CD release event at Dan's Silver Leaf on February 28th.
Finally, I want to give a shout out to Merrie Earnest, who takes such great photos and videos of the shows. She goes above and beyond to support the band.
Every year for the past eight years, my dear friend and I make a collage for the upcoming year. It's therapeutic, inspiring, and just plain fun. So here it is: the official collage of 2015!
The mannequin hands will be gracing the walls of two galleries this month.
First, in Dallas at the Dallas Public Library will be Common Threads. Kalee Appleton curated this exhibit, which will be up from October 9-30. More information can be found here. I'll be talking about my work this Saturday at the reception.
Starting October 17 is a show in Denton at the tAd gallery. This is an exhibit I've been putting together which consists of work from The Red Dots, an artist collective I have been involved in since it began in 2009. I'm excited to see it all come together next week!
Thanks to all of the Red Dots for their artistic support and community!
I've been working on being more intentional about being an artist. For me, this means living a creative life, not just painting often. Enter my beautiful friend and stylist Barbara and her willingness to play with haircolor.
For a long time, the color of choice was blue. Whether my hair was long or short, blue was the color that reminded me of the ocean. I loved its calming presence. But lately I wanted a little fire, so I asked her to try orange. She suggested the fuschia tips and I think it's amazing that way!
So cheers to Barbara and to fun with hair color!
p.s. No, you're not too old!
I'm so excited that this bag "The Working Girl" won a Pursey Award at the Greater Denton Arts Council's annual event! It's made of scaps from men's pants and lined with pieces from a damaged blue dress shirt that belonged to my father. To whoever won her in the silent auction, thanks for supporting the (recycled) arts!
One of my lifelong goals was to make a quilt all by myself. It took a few months, but I got it done and learned so much in the process. This new piece uses scrap fabrics to create an image that brings me back to my beginnings as a girl at her mama's sewing machine.
I made it in response to an open call at the tAd gallery involving food ethics. This piece questions the effect of water rights ownership on the farms that grow our food. I have more pieces in the works for an upcoming show there. Stay tuned!
UNT is offering free Saturday events to inspire creativity in kids! Info here on my blog for Discover Denton.