July 20, 2007


"The greatest thing a human soul ever does in this world is to see something, and tell what he saw in a plain way. Hundreds of people can talk for one who can think, but thousands can think for one who can see" - John Ruskin

Oh, to see better... and then what do we do with what we see - paint it, photograph it to help others see and see things we the artist don't even see. So much of my painting these days has been about "finishing". I'm forgetting to see. This quote by John Ruskin, Victorian art critic and artist always makes me stop and open my eyes. (By the way, he also didn't think women could paint or draw ... hmmmm) Beyond art, do we see the man we pass on the street or who makes our morning coffee?
Some of the art work I enjoy most are those in which the artist paints something I would have missed, that I would never have caught my eye let alone attention. Andrew Wyeth's work sends me to the moon. If you're looking for a good art book get this one. I just never get tired of it and BOY can he see. The picture to the left is in the corner of my parent's garden - they've watched many a bird fight over that bird bath.

July 15, 2007

Meet GerAmyUm

I'm half way through my summer art class at the Art Center. As with any class I've taken, I never quite know what to expect. However, what has been the most exciting and surprising is the other struggling artist/illustrator students in the class. They've been extremely helpful, honest and encouraging. So, some of my questions about the GerAmyUm book were put to rest with their input. For example, I was having a really hard time coming up with a face for GerAmyUm - I think because I really didn't want to put two dots and a smile in the middle of a geranium. My classmates told me they didn't feel one was necessary. So, meet GerAmyUm...
I had hoped to finish the illustrations for the book by the end of summer... (what was I thinking!!!) and all the work I've done up to now seems to have produced nothing. But I have to remember, I needed these wrong paintings to realize what I don't want and what doesn't work. And, I'm that much closer to getting the look and feel of what I want. That's a HUGE part of the process - all the work that does NOT go into it. No sketching, erasing, painting is a waste. Art and growing are both glorious and painful... Someone made a comment the other day about how painting must be so relaxing. I thought about it for a second. Yes, there are moments. But all in all I don't do it to relax. I get a massage, take a nap, watch a movie - that's what I do to relax. I paint because I feel most alive when doing it - even if I get mad. And trust me plenty of arches papers has been thrown across the room like a Frisbee. I hope to post another painting for the book soon - but I've got alot of wrong painting to do first...

July 5, 2007

Father's Day

Yes, I realize Father's Day is long past. Shame on me for not posting this sooner. I spent Father's Day weekend with my dad and I think I have for the past couple of years. I went to the church my dad is minister of and enjoyed the sermon immensely. Simply put my father is an superb preacher but first and foremost he is an excellent father to his kids and husband to my mother. I can think of no better example of love and integrity than that of my father. The picture to the left was taken when my dad was in college and with dark hair. In fact, I hardly remember my dad with dark hair. He has a head full of silver hair and to many resembles Steve Martin - in fact he has been stopped many times by people who thinks he's the comedian actor. I have watched many people look twice at him trying to figure out if he is "somebody." Oh, the stories I could tell.

This is my dad in his robe on Father's Day morning. He shares the sanctuary with both the Catholics and the Jewish communities at the retirement complex where he ministers. On Sunday mornings the Catholics get the sanctuary first and they have to wheel out the Virgin Mary before the protestant service. This is the closet where the Catholic priest hangs his robe next to the Protestant minister's. Oh the metaphors that come into play... Besides being a wonderful minister, by dad is an amazing carpenter. This is one of my favorite pieces that he built for me. I've been brought up making things and being taught that we can make just about anything we put our minds to create. I could brag on my dad for pages and pages. But one little picture tells you much more. I think the world would be much better place if everyone had a dad like my mine. Happy Father's Day to all the dads that love and teach us how to love and create!


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