Night time River Cruise, Saranac River 6x12

Night time River Cruise, Saranac River 6x12
Night Time River Cruise, Saranac River 6x12View at Strand Center for the Arts Plattsburgh, NY

Monday, July 3, 2017

Back to work…

Oh, The shoveling to do. March 14, 2017
( Truth: I wrote this entry several weeks ago. I had not let it go into the blogshere. In processing this idea further in the last month or so I have realized there is more than meets the eye in this slow recovery. The first thing out of my mouth Wednesday November 9, 2016 after my husband asked how was I doing that morning was, "Not good. I am not going to be good for a long time." I think I set myself up for a low grade depression, heading into winter because of the results that let the occupant in. Name it -  Tame it, they say. I will continue to make work of what I consider beautiful to remind myself that it is out there and we all need to look for beauty every day even when uglinessness seems so insistant. "Nevertheless, She persisted.) Onward.

It was a tough winter for me this year. I came down with the flu hard and graciously gave it to my husband. We were perfectly useless to each other for more than 2 weeks. Then it snowed 3 feet. Whew. Adirondack winters test one's mettle.

I had good intentions to spring back into action when we headed to Mexico to escape mud season. Bought pastels and paper. Painted the first day. I found I lacked the energy to give to the work no matter how small. I carried my supplies as penance for not following through.

During my recovery from flu I ran across a NYT story about Carmen Herrera. I had never heard of her. She is an abstract minimalist who began her career in the same era as Mondrian, Kelly and Stella. She has become my heroine of the year or longer.
Carmen Herrera is 102 and still painting every day. She has been discovered at a much later stage of her life than those bad boys of her youth. Most recently this winter Herrera had an exhibit of her work at the Whitney. Finding her was an inspiration. No, I will not be switching to her style. She is 102 and painting every day! I have a lot of work to do and years to get it done.

May Iris 8x6
It has only been this week (early May) that I am feeling up to my old feisty self. Maybe it was working in the garden, bu I finally kicked the lingering malaise of the flu out the door.

Since I have a pile of prepped 6x8 pastel paper ready, I am intending to warm up the brain and hand with a mini a day. Here is an iris from the garden. These are very early because they have very short stems only 12" high, but the color is luscious. I don't do it justice here, but it was great to get back into the work.

I will be posting the work on Facebook on two pages.  If you follow on one you will need to like the other to see it. The FB page with just my work on it will appear with only the work - no commentary on any desperate situations.

Stay tuned.
 Artliveslong, D
Still Snow Capped 12x18

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Autumn Reflections

What attracts a painter to view?  Is it the challenge, reflections, or color - summer dormant reds and oranges jumping into my hand, or is it the subtle shapes just far away enough to escape real definition?

When I set up to paint near water it is almost always the water that taunts me. I feel lucky when I get reflections, because it allows me to work on seeing the stretched underside of the trees. Water reflections are a couple of shades more intense than what it is reflecting, a trait that the only tell is when picking up a piece that is not hanging - which side is up? If one is looking at reflections upside down there should be a faint sense of vertigo, falling into the "sky", that signals your viewpoint needs adjusting.

Finding that view is elusive in plein air. Elements can change quickly, the lovely branches with sky peeking through melding into tannic shoreline can vanish with a shift in sunlight and the jet stream dissolving those great reflection into ripples, leaving the painter guessing and frustrated.  But one could return the next day yes? Maybe, but not likely in the Adirondacks. That wind heralds other weather. The sun may not be available for an appearance. In the fall it can mean the last day for that particular set up for color.

Plein air is a slow motion way of capturing what the Iphone gets in a nano second. One can say "got it" and rush on. The plein air painter sets up to catch a long piece of time in a two dimensional format and hopes to place the elements that first attracted her before – the sun moves, the clouds gather, the wind picks up, the temperature drops.

Autumn Reflections is #5 in the 7 for 7 challenge to post. Painted at Camp Sagamore, it is ready to hang - right-side up - a window into fall to enjoy all year round.

Here is day 3. Day two and four will come later.

"Trajectory", the night of a super moon rising over the fields in Gabriels.

Stay tuned.


Monday, January 23, 2017

Yet another mini challege

Paul of Saratoga Pastel unfinished 14x11
I was nominated by Joann Quinlivan to post 7 paintings in 7 days on Saturday. I just posted my first painting, a piece - unfinished, a product of a one day workshop with another pastel and oil painter Corey Pitkin, which I participated in this January.

Having a model for a whole day is a delicious novelty and still - it is not enough time. Exploring deep shadows and strong bone structure with a little bit of a hazard- the paper was not as smooth as I usually work with - I was able to disappear into the work.

I need to dive in more consistently to my work. It is a healing strengthening process, quite necessary for the peace I need in my mind.

I won't pretend to change the world with my art, just record the beauty as a I see it. There is  plenty of beauty out there in spite of the fierce political wind. I will go after as best I can. It is what I do.

Artliveslong, D