Monday, June 18, 2012

When a negative becomes a positive

It was an artful weekend, both days I was able to paint without interruption (probably because both of my daughters left early Saturday morning for their summer jobs and I will be an empty nester for the next 2 months). Sunday morning I went to IKEA to purchase more of the shadowbox frames needed to display the small encaustic paintings only to discover they are no longer making the 6" x 6" size. Because these paintings are so small it is important they be presented in a way that enhances the work. I ended up purchasing several of the larger 9" x 9" shadowboxes, the only size they are carrying now.

The good news is I actually think the paintings look better matted and with more empty white space vs. floated on a white background without a mat. What do you think?

Large and small frame

Both paintings in the larger 9" x 9" frame

New Poppy paintings 

I have quenched my artistic thirst for painting flowers, at least for the time being.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Flower Power

My summer project(s) officially started today. I am going to try to paint 30 new encaustic paintings, all small works, by August 1. The past week was surprisingly successful as I had multiple sales on Etsy as well as in the Copley Society small works summer show. 

These paintings are 2.5" x 3.5", then floated and mounted on 6" x 6" watercolor paper, with my stamp signature on the bottom left. I think the addition of the shadowbox frame enhances the presentation and they are priced under $100 each, a key selling point.

I also have 5 small works being featured in Gallery Della-Piana, opening next week. The gallery owner was more interested in my winter scenes rather than summer as she said most artists neglect to find the beauty in a winter garden. 

As usual, I spent most of what I made in sales last week reordering supplies to allow me to continue working. Getting ahead is a never ending challenge... starving artist comes to mind.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Naming Shells

By doing a google search I was able to learn about proper shell names based on their size, color, and shape. Who knew there were specific names for just about every shell in the ocean!

Top Shell, 18" x 22"

Cone Shell, 18" x 22"

After living with the turquoise background for a day I decided on a darker layer of color to try to create even more contrast. I am sure for each person that prefers turquoise another would prefer indigo. My mood of the day took over and made the change. I also cut off 4 inches of background (what was once 22" is now 18") because it felt like too much empty space. These paintings were quick, fun studies but now it's time for me to change artistic direction although I still don't know what's next.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Warm Waters

It's been a while since my last blog post, Springtime usually means more show opportunities and now that I have received notifications from all of my applications I feel like I can assess where I am at and how I am feeling about my art, my self, and my future.

Bottom line, I am going to embrace being a big fish in a little sea - my show acceptances have all been closer to home in local venues rather than national shows and it always seems the rejections are a bigger deal than the acceptances. I need to work on changing my attitude.

I am participating in a summer show at Gallery Della-Piana, a new venue for me in the town of Wenham, MA. I also received word that one of my encaustic paintings received Best of Show in the mixed media exhibit at the Marblehead Festival of Arts. I was included in the Marblehead Art Association New England Open Show in April, and participated in the local Swampscott Art Association Spring Show. For me, my accomplishments never feel as big as the rejections. There were two spring shows I did not get accepted into. And I find myself asking, is the cup half full or half empty?

Vacations usually refresh me and until this weekend I did not feel inspired to paint how it felt to snorkel in the magnificent coral reefs of Jamaica. I may continue exploring this combination of sumi-e ink and watercolor but mostly it was fun to finally play with my spray bottle and paints.

Coral Reef, 24" x 18"

Black Coral, 8" x 20"