Done ( for now anyway)
Hugs and smiles
I received some very sad news today.
A beautiful blogger friend, died today as a result of an accident.
Some of you might know her as “Jotter Girl”
She was a talented artist and wonderful writer, as well as being a mother to twin boys and a generous and loving friend to many.
The world has lost a very special person.
I will miss you Catherine, I wish we had had the opportunity to meet in real life so I could have told you how much I admire and adore you.
You are very much loved and taken from us too soon.
Often it isn’t until something is resolved, that you don’t realise just how much the stress of waiting for that resolution has affected your mood and general day-to-day reactions to your world.
I know that I didn’t realise how angry my banking job made me until I resigned and this huge weight lifted from my heart.
And now, my prediction that this year would bring major change for me is coming true.
I really can’t go into detail at the moment but after a long time of uncertainty, an official decision has been made about the direction of the future for my workplace and despite it perhaps not being the decision I was hoping for, what will be, will be, and we are now able to focus on what is ahead with an amount of certainty.
I realised last night too, that perhaps my biggest problem with this term’s theme of colour field abstracts was the lack of direction, at a time when I really needed something to challenge me and to obsess over.
In other words, take my mind off of the other stuff.
But with confirmation, came almost a sense of relief and with that a renewed energy.
Final project. A large colour field abstract. This one 30″ x 30″.
Big enough for me to really get my teeth into, you could say.
And with a plan in my head already, I got to work last night.
My inspiration from nature
A huge old gum tree on the property of Hans Heyson (famous painter of such trees)
Really thinking about this one. I have the urge to add some textural elements to it but I have to tread carefully so as to keep its balance.
It is a lovely grey blue with some glazing of purple and red violet so far and I am undecided whether to even use any of the inks that I played with over the weekend. I am liking the more soft and subtle colours that I currently have happening. Right down to the traces of charcoal that you can still see that remain from my initial drawing…ok, you might not be able to see them in the pic but I can.
I have two more weeks to work on it before the end of term and there is a slight possibility it might become part of an exhibition.
As long as I don’t over do it and completely fuck it up of course.
I hope I am not boring you guys with my constant art babble. Sometimes it seems that I don’t have much else to talk about.
It has been a little quiet around here, but I guess I can blame myself for slacking off with getting around to everybody else’s blogs.
After all, if a girl doesn’t work it on a street corner in her little mini skirt, and knee-high boots, how the hell will she ever get Richard Gere to pull over and inspect the wares?
I realised on the weekend that goes for friendships too.
Long time friends have had a bit of a rough time with a teen daughter who has some problems. Sadly, it has meant that the regular dinners out and family get togethers have not happened and it has been really hard to find time to just simply connect.
Simply dropping in, unannounced, is not possible, as is any long-term planning of a night out.
But Sunday, Hubby suggested we call in and see them.
I confess I wasn’t sure. Too many times we had tried to connect only to be turned down and I was a little unsure about whether they even wanted to continue our friendship.
But I messaged them and very happily (and a little surprisingly I confess), the message came back that they would love a catch up and would we like to meet them for lunch at a local cafe.
Of course we would.
And over a lovely 2 hour lunch we caught up on a year of missing news.
Of course we have promised not to leave it as long again and as long as life doesn’t throw them and us any curve balls, we will see them more often.
Big loving hugs before we parted reassured and dismissed any doubts that the friendship was still strong and I know now, that any lack of contact from them was unintentional. Their focus has had to be completely on their family, as it should be.
Not all friendships have an even balance of “I ring you then you ring me”. Sometimes, one person has to work a little harder. Not because the friendship is not equally important to each of you.
Just sometimes, one party has so much more to deal with on a daily basis.
And time just gets away from them.
It is the weekend and despite being the first day of Autumn, it is a gloriously sunny day.
Probably way too nice to be inside painting but with gorgeous light pouring into my girl cave/studio I was feeling like getting a little messy.
Now that I have finished my couple of landscapes I am in a better frame of mind with regard to my abstract project at class. After all, a girl has to keep busy and with a promise from my teacher that we will have some fun with inks, I am actually looking forward to Tuesday night.
Of course you guys know me well enough that I couldn’t just sit back and wait so yesterday after work, I hit the art shop and picked up three little bottles of ink.
Insert cool you tube video here.
So I have this idea for a painting, inspired by some funky tree bark that I saw on Wednesday and so I started playing with painting a canvas in shades of white and grey hoping to have some underlying tonal values (look at me talking like I know what I am saying hehe)
And then I put it aside to dry.
At the market last Tuesday, I bought myself a bunch of Asters. So lovely and colourful with an old-fashioned vibe, I just couldn’t resist.
Still going strong today, they simply cried out to be captured in paint.
(you need to watch the video to find out how I created the textures with cling wrap, salt, vinegar and dish washing liquid)
Yes, I put it outside to dry. Too nice not to.
As for why a freshly primed canvas is like a piece of bread and jam?
When you drop them they both land on your foot sticky side down.
Time for wine ..happy Saturday everyone
Another day, another three art exhibitions.
I am sure I have said it before, but I will say it again.
It is so much fun to act like a tourist in your home town.
With hubby home this week, it was his turn to join me on an art adventure while his car was at the mechanics having a service.
Today we pointed my little car up the freeway toward the Adelaide Hills.
First stop, the little township of Stirling and the Aptos Cruz Gallery.
This beautiful converted old stone building was filled with a huge assortment of different art and also included modern and antique furniture.
It was recommended as a good place to get close up to some excellent examples of colour field abstracts (Yes, I might still be grumbling about the term subject but that doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate how gorgeous the style can be)
Another painting caught my eye, by another artist and completely different.
The crazy thing about this one is that the tag described it as “aerosol” and when you look closely the paint has all been applied with little squirts.
That is one of the great things about getting of my butt and checking out so many different exhibitions. I have discovered so many styles and forms of art, some I have loved, some that have left me inspired, and others that have had me titling my head sideways and saying quietly WTF???
Next stop, a place of SA Art history. The home and studio of Hans Heysen.
The Fringe exhibition was an outdoor collection of sculpture set among the beautiful gum trees that Hans was so famous for painting.
I think though, the highlight of the stop was the chance to enter the purpose built artist studio with it’s collection of drawings, paintings and artist tools.
Last stop before lunch was in the historic German settled township of Hahndorf.
Another gallery, another steep staircase and plenty of art. A good finish to the art crawl..
While wandering down the street, we stopped at a favorite leather and hat shop and hubby was rewarded for his patience with a new belt.
A stop at The German Arms hotel for lunch was the cure for a rumbling tummy and tired feet. A snitty for hubby and a German style chicken dish for me. A big lunch and now no need for dinner tonight.
I am feeling a little weary. Normally I sleep well, but last night, I guess I had stuff on my mind.
I am going back to my usual art classes next term. After a good chat with my teacher, I think it will be a more interesting term. And I have decided to tackle the large abstract project next week. I have been promised the chance to play with inks and experiment with different techniques and considering both my River and Beach paintings are now finished and SOLD, I can afford to play.
Last day of my holidays tomorrow. Not much planned but a bit of grocery shopping and a meeting at the high school in the evening.
It has been a good break. Possibly not long enough, but better than nothing.
At least work is ok these days and a girl still needs to pay the bills
Shhh, can you hear that?
No not the soft tones of George, John, Paul and Ringo currently crooning from my iPod but the sound of a male free zone?
So quiet in my house right now.
And for most of the day I expect.
Each of them out doing stuff they want to do, leaving me home doing what I want to do. Sadly without a car to go anywhere but there is art to be done and quite possibly extreme lazy moments ..
And time to contemplate.
I said a few months ago that I had the unshakeable feeling that 2014 would be a year of change, particularly with work.
Now I have to be careful, work is getting more and more paranoid that we might use social media to cast them or our work mates in a bad light so you will not be seeing many more mentions of my work and what will be happening, just in case.
But change is confirmed and will be happening, it is now just a matter of when.
So let’s stick to art, I would prefer to think about that anyway.
Last week was interesting at class as I was able to talk to my teacher about how I wasn’t really all that excited about doing ANOTHER abstract to finish the term.
And she said I didn’t have to if I didn’t want to.
Which of course, because I am crazy, started me wondering if I did, what would I do.
A couple of other things she had said to me through the evening, while helping me work the beach painting also stuck in my head and Wednesday, the cogs were turning and I was thinking that there was some magic involved.
Contrary Mary as I am, with somethings I need to make up my own mind.
So I painted.
and added circles
and more circles
All while deciding if I wanted to recreate it or do something else on a larger canvas.
I am pretty happy with it.
But I don’t want to do it again.
In the midst of making this decision, I received an email from the school asking us to re-enrol for next term ASAP as demand for places what high (there are still 4 more weeks before this term ends).
And given my mixed feelings about this term’s theme and projects, I decided to ask for more information.
And the response did not excite me.
moving further into Abstract Expressionism following on from the learning achieved through Colour Field exploration and painting.
Oh great, more of the same, was my first reaction.
And re-enroling for next term seemed so much less compelling.
After all, I like abstracts, but when I googled Abstract Expressionism and a whole pile of stuff came up about Jackson Pollock and others, I can’t say I was jumping on the couch with excitement.
There has been another email since, with a little more actual information and a little less blah blah so I am going to try to remain a open-minded until at least I get a chance to talk to my teacher as I am now wondering from an image they provided, if perhaps they mean Abstract Impressionism as opposed to Abstract Expressionism (yes, two completely different styles from what the Google Gods tell me).
Abstract Impressionism would interest me more, given that it can be used for landscapes and still life work.
So stay tuned…
After doing another “Fringe Art Crawl” yesterday and crossing another 3 exhibitions off my list, I also found another couple of local places that do art classes and workshops so there is definitely options out there.
Something else I did yesterday which I plan to finish today..maybe
I don’t draw enough so I am happy with my progress on this.
I do find it is an excellent way to channel my thoughts though, so I need to pick up the pencils more often.
Which I really should do now.
But first coffee….
I think we have heard it said that to be a writer, you need to read and so I think it must follow that to be an artist you need to see art.
Art done by other people.
Of course you can sit in front of a screen and watch the YouTube and wander the world wide web or you can get out of the house and go find art.
Finding art is awesome and very often a very inexpensive adventure.
Yesterday was the first day of my two-week break and although I didn’t plan it to coincide, there is a festival in town.
The Adelaide Fringe. An annual affair and probably more about comedy and theater but there is also a visual art component that really only requires some time, comfortable shoes and perhaps a fondness or at least tolerance for some stairs.
Well the stair part is probably optional given that there were lifts but who can resist climbing a sweeping marble staircase in pursuit of some awesome paintings?
Now being stingy, I decided that parking in the city was extravagant so my first adventure was parking just out of the CBD and catching the tram into the shopping precinct.
Easy on the pocket and so much less stressful than parking in the heart of the city.
My companion in my art adventuring was MJ. His Uni year hasn’t started yet and with the promise that we would also visit bookshops and comic book stores, he was happy to come along for the ride.
It was a glorious day, weather wise. Clear and sunny without being over hot.
I had made a list of places that promised little exhibitions and so we wandered.
Coffee shop first. Then a bookshop to find what I hope will be a perfect gift for a friend.
The first flight of stairs, down to the anime/manga shop. We were hunting for Buffy comic books.
The onward down the mall to the Adelaide Arcade. One of my favorite places full of history and quirky shops.
Up the stairs to the balcony level to discover an artist who both works with woven textiles and paints using silicon for texture. Lovely girl who I have a feeling may spend a whole lot of the day waiting for people to discover her little space. It is certainly not a high traffic location compared to downstairs.
It also appeared that Monday is a quiet time in the arcade with another couple of exhibition spaces closed until Wednesday.
Back downstairs and onto another comic book store before a lunch stop, the chosen food court…downstairs.
After eating and having done the shopping we wanted, we decided the town hall and it’s promised art display was the next on our list.
Side tracked briefly by the new city library – down a lane and then three floors up (we took the lift) – we spent a few minutes watching three D printing and admiring the layout before heading back down stairs and yes, this time we walked the stairs.
Reaching the town hall, it was up (yes up) the marble staircase to enjoy a wonderful selection of portraits. Some historical and some more hysterical but all of them definitely interesting to this little black duck who still finds the whole portrait thing a little intimidating.
Next stop was north again. A side street off a road I haven’t wandered down for a while.
A most unusual workspace. Complete with a teepee and a cubby house, “The Hub” promotes itself as a collaborative workspace. Something I had never heard of and it was kind of weird to be wandering around people working in this funky office type environment simply to look at amazing art.
The artist was Samantha Tipler and I fell in love with her bold colours and imagery. (her facebook page – screamcreativeart )
So reluctantly I dragged myself away before people started thinking I was some sort of art stalker and we headed back downstairs to street level and back out into the sunshine.
Feeling the need for afternoon tea, MJ led me to a delightful waffle shop where he treated me to waffles with fresh fruit and icecream.
Another new experience for me.
Last stop before heading back to the car was the pop-up gallery of the phenomenal skin illustrator (body painter), photographer, artist Emma Hack
AMAZING. JUST BLOODY AMAZING.
Go here and look. seriously. Take a moment to check out her art. I think you will be happy you did.
I was pretty tired when we finally got home and very happy to put my feet up.
I have lived in Adelaide pretty much all of my adult life and yet, I am still discovering amazing places that once I would have walked right past.
It is pretty exhilarating to have an adventure, a day of discovery in your home town and all it really cost was $4 for all day parking and a bit of lunch.
It was great to spend time with MJ too. Art might not be his thing but I think he enjoyed it all too.
Especially the waffles. They were a definite highlight and worth a return visit some time.
As for my art.
Still working the beach and the river scenes.
And Sunday morning I managed this little quicky.
Tummy rumbling so I better go have lunch
Hugs and smooches friends xx