Little Paintings

In between larger works, I’ve been working on these smaller pieces. They are roughly between 8×10 – 11×14. They allow me to play without too much investment in time.

I am also currently working on large watercolors. I am slowly coming to the conclusion that my strengths seem to be better suited towards traditional watercolor still-lives (as opposed to acrylic abstracts).

What sort of stinks about this realization is that I have spent the last 6 years working tirelessly on abstract painting ! – and also constantly feeling frustrated.

Ahh…I am sure the knowledge and experience will be good for something… I just don’t know what that is yet.  Now, to be patient and present enough to let life unfold…

In the upcoming week or two, I will post my bigger more serious paintings.  And then you’ll get an idea of the direction I’m going…

Here’s to Life and Learning!

 

Feeling the Blues

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Not feeling like I have any control over the subject matter, composition or colors, but I’ll show you how I tamed this wild beast from some dots and crosshatches to at least something… Negative painting (painting the background instead of the foreground) seemed to go well.  It’s how you edit the mess and I’m finding it’s the key to creating the composition.  I will take what I learned and move forward.

Blue Still Life

11×14 acrylic and charcoal

Birds in the Shadows

_a2015-08-13 17.08.34Birds in the Shadows  – acrylic and charcoal on canvas 24 x 48 inches

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I named this painting “Birds in the Shadows” because when you see the painting in person, the birds are the last thing you actually see.

I did this on purpose.

When you’re looking out a window you see the ground, the trees, the sky.  Right?  Your brain simply interprets the key objects and filters everything else out. However, the longer you stare and the more conscious your observation, you begin to see the entire window’s view alive and moving.  I can’t tell you how many times I wait that extra 2-3 minutes and then I sit in amazement.  There are sometimes 20-50 little sparrows on the lawn which were there the entire time and my mind filtered them out.

I know many people close to me that would say “Yeah, how nice you spend your days in la-la land staring out your window… some of us work you know, some of us have real jobs, some of us can’t afford that luxury…”  Boy I am plagued by this.  I’m sent this message daily by my society and even by those near and dear to my heart.  Somehow I am the weirdo-dreamer because I observe what is actually there and try to remind people of it?   But darling humans around me, could it be that YOU are the ones in la-la land as you sit for hours right by the window not looking out because your hand-held device is the only thing that captures your attention?

You have no time for these frivolities?   Could it be your free time is lacking in abundance because you are pressing little buttons accumulating points from little games on your phones?  Do you need to sit and watch on a screen what someone you haven’t seen in 13 years is doing in Milwaukee instead of sitting and watching the real world right outside your window?

Just shut up. Stop it. Put it down and frigging listen.

There is wind rustling through the trees right outside your window. No really. Turn off your AC and open the window, you’ll hear it.  I swear!  There’s squirrels fighting over territory, blackbirds filling up the trees, sunlight warming up that patch of earth over there and the smell of berries rotting in the vines.  Every day and it’s free, well It’s free right now anyway…

You are right, some of you are not “affording” the luxury and you do appear to have way more to show for yourselves than I.  Go ahead and call me the weirdo-dreamer.

Why do artists paint pretty pictures?   Why do they so often choose the simplest of subject matter?  It’s to remind people of the beauty in the everyday. In all of the minutia that many filter out and no longer see.   Yes to us “freaks” everything in the everyday world is simply mind-blowing :)

Artists are not the dreamers, you are the ones in a dream state.  I’d say artists are the observers.  They are very alert and very awake. They are the ones paying attention to the things the world forgets or are considered less important.

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Yep. That’s what I’m thinking while I paint pretty pictures of little birdies  -Pure piss and vinegar!!!  

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Ok. so where was I before I flipped out on my blogosphere public? Sorry about that digression. I mean who’s really reading this blog anyways…    Mom are you there? You are at least reading these posts right Mom? Ahh… Mom???

Oh yes right…. the progression of my painting…

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Love you all ;) daydream a little!

DAY # 355 – HEADS UP

#355 - COLOR STUDIES (1)

#355 - COLOR STUDIES (2)

I’m feeling a lot better today. Yesterday I began to panic over everything Christmas! I had presents to deliver, places to be, kids to collect, a little art to make, a blog to write… I sort of lost my cool.

Now that all of yesterdays tasks have been accomplished I feel a whole lot lighter.  My shopping is complete.  I gave my house a good cleaning, the crazy hours of theatre end tomorrow, it may actually be time to sit back and enjoy a little bit of the holiday.

My only worry is what could I do artistically without any semblance of a schedule?  My kids will be home until the new year, we have quite a bit of traveling to do and we will be hosting guests as well.

When I woke up today that worry had gone away. Every day this year would have been a panic if I actually stopped to think about them.  What has gotten me through is taking one day at a time and not thinking about it.  Any time I have tried to plan ahead, eek something out ahead, anything that wasn’t absolutely present, has failed. I woke up today and reminded myself to go with the flow.

Now this would have been one of those rare mornings where I could have slept in, but no.  My youngest snuck in to snuggle at 5:30am and by 6am my husband and I were officially up.

I seized the moment and sat down to paint.  I cut up a bunch of 7×11″ pieces of watercolor paper. My plan was just to let the watercolor flow. I figured if I put some paint down an idea would spring from it and it did.

I began to see a face emerge.

I thought to myself “how fun” and “how free”.  I love this small narrow size and I love letting watercolors roam freely as they do.

It occurred to me that I could accomplish a few of these a day.  A moment here, a moment there. Plus, I was having fun which is important.  This is supposed to be something I love, not a chore.  If I turn it into a chore even in my last week of creating for an entire year, I will lose.  I will remember burning out at Christmas and that is not the memory for me.  I want FUN.

So in the upcoming days I will probably post about upcoming festivities, fun things I’m doing with family, but I also will be creating these wild head paintings.  My idea is to take a big bunch of them and combine them into one large work at the end.

My true objective is to let loose and play with color. It’s my first love. It’s my true love. I figure if I focus on color and I focus on fun the next ten days will be a breeze.

Now that’s how I want to go out!

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