Color Theory

How do I express this experience? I feel color. Color consumes me, seduces me, possesses me. I’m drowning in color sensations. I don’t have to see a particular color to experience the essence of it. I go through color moods. When I first moved to Colorado, and for years after, I was filled with this certain color of violet that came from the mountains at dusk. This was a color of freedom, beauty, deep breaths, an expansiveness, yet a grounding security that came from the mountains themselves.


Lately I’ve been in a green and blue, and a green and red mood. It’s an earthy retro green and turquoise, and candy colored spring green with raspberry pink. Or, in art school terms: green with red undertones and blue moving towards green; and green moving towards yellow, with….oh nevermind that. It has just become apparent to me that I need to revisit color theory.


When these moods overtake me I must seek out the colors. Yesterday I went to a new fabric store. I was barely in the door when I almost exclaimed out loud my joy in the sensory stimulation. But that would go against the restraint I have carefully cultivated over the years. There were stacks of the most beautiful colors! Beautiful retro prints, lovely springy-little girl-flowery prints. I picked out some blue and green to make some new pillow tops to give my living room a boost. And I satisfied my need for bright green and pink (and a little yellow and orange thrown in) with some fat quarters that I plan to make into a quilt for my grand daughter. I’m really wishing I had my Lalie here to help me plan and piece this quilt!

Oh! and did I mention orange?

V-Day

Yesterday afternoon I heard a knocking, a tap-tap-tapping, then a pound pound pounding at my door. I wasn’t expecting company, or a delivery of any sort. It’s my neighbor who gets the daily visit from the brown truck with goodies. So I almost didn’t answer the door; I was upstairs in my studio, painting away (and watching Dark Shadows while I painted, snicker, snicker). I got up and looked out the window; all I saw was a shabby little car with the door standing open, parked in front of the neighbor’s drive. I still couldn’t see any good reason to answer the door (yes I’m rude and a hermit). But then the pounding started and the ringing of our very odd door bell (clanger?) so I decided I’d better go see what was going on. I was quite surprised when I opened the door to this large bunch of greenery. I assumed they were for my daughter. I know I had a funny, confused look on my face when the delivery woman said my name! She looked at me quite oddly too:) They were really for me! It was Hubby Dear surprising me a couple days early. I never know what to expect from him. He’s a sweetheart.

We really don’t get all that into Valentine’s Day. I appreciate an acknowledgment, but don’t want or expect extravagance. I can get really mushy and tell you that everyday is Valentine’s Day for us, and in a way it is. After four years of marriage and a couple more together, we really are still newlyweds. We have a sweet, mellow little life together. I like it.

Out and about today there was so much traffic and crowds everywhere, people rushing about, trying to find just the right gift, the right outfit to wear, the perfect perfume, the ideal meal, that would help them find love or prove their love. V-Day is really a horrible day. It puts so much pressure on people to perform, standards to live up to. And for the people who are alone, either by choice or circumstance, everywhere they look they are reminded of their solitude. I was one of them until I met my husband. I’m thankful I have him in my life. I’m thankful that we aren’t hung up on silly commercial holidays. That doesn’t mean I won’t cook him a special meal tomorrow, and open a bottle of slightly better red than we’re used to. Maybe….I’ll even get lucky. Or he will:)

hee hee looky what I did!

I am just so pleased with myself! I was reading one of my favorite blogs, Design*Sponge and I found Desiree’s, of desiree haigh photography, instructions for this great faux Hermes key fob. I saw it and remembered that I had this tacky purple velvet skirt I had found at a thrift store. I trekked down to the basement and dug it out, then rooted through drawers to find abandoned key rings. Once again I reap the rewards of my pack rattery. I think it made for some very fab fobbery! This is a great key chain because it’s big enough to find in your purse, but is light so won’t weigh down the starter on the car. I learned the importance of that from my car expert son. I’m going to save one of these for myself, and gift the others to some faraway friends. I’ll stop making up words now. Go check out all the great DIY projects at Design*Sponge.

Gallimaufry


I think my obsession with birds is crossing over with my love of mid-century modern design. I’ve been playing with some ideas in my head about paintings I want to do, inspired by mid-century graphics. Some of it slipped out onto this bird drawing:)

I picked up this book. I’ve only barely begun reading it, but in the introduction the author, Marnie Fogg, states, “The 1960’s saw an explosion of all that was new and modern after the ‘make do and mend’ of post-war austerity. Against this backdrop of new consumerism, fashion was a persuasive presence in contemporary life…” That got me to thinking about the current financial crisis and the tightening of our collective belts. I find it interesting that at this time of decreased consumerism, when we are again learning to DIY, there is a such a revival of interest in the style of that previous era that was seeing a new prosperity. I have some more thinking to do on this topic, and want to come back to it again. Any thoughts?

Refuge


Here is an example of an issue I come up against in most of my paintings and drawings. I have lots of mid-tone but I have trouble pushing the boundaries of shadow and highlight. There are some in this painting, but not enough to really create form and distinguish elements of the composition. So I have more to work on in this piece.

I’ve been spending a lot of time in the studio. I am a very slow artist, but it’s all coming along. My studio has very much been a place of refuge lately. It seems the world is pressing on me from every direction and all I want to do is hide in my studio and play with pots of color. Escape. It’s fitting that the birds I’m painting are ones I’ve viewed at the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge. We all need a safe rock to sun ourselves on.

The World is Full of Beautiful Things


I’ve really been falling in love with all the pretty photo mosaics I’ve been seeing on other blogs, so I had to try my own. I’m trying to learn how to use my camera properly, and I’m learning photoshop as well. That’s a lot for my old brain to handle. I believe now that learning is different when we get older. I always thought that was a bunch of hooey, but now I know better. We can learn new tricks; it just takes a lot longer!

Voices in my Head


This is the progress I’ve made on two paintings. They are both mostly finished. I am at that point where I know there are some finishing touches, but I’m not sure just how much I still have left to do. Do I even like the painting? Should I just stop painting and consider it a practice piece? Did I f*** up a perfectly fine drawing by adding paint? You know that inner critic, the voice of your art school teachers who tell you that you aren’t an artist just yet.

I constantly question my ability as an artist. My true belief is that anyone who has a drive towards creativity is an artist. Everyone has different skill levels, and only through constant practice will that skill increase. And one of the purposes of this blog is to put my work out there and hope for feedback. Of course, positive feedback always feels best, but I need constructive criticism. It’s hard to see my own work. I find that photographing it and looking at it on the computer makes it easier to see. Does anyone else have that experience?

Ok, well I have to get back to work. March is coming soon.

Waxing Gibbous


I’ve been lost in a cold, snowy haze, and at a loss for words. I’ll be back soon with something to say I hope, and more pictures of the paintings I’ve been working on. In the meantime, I went over to Mixed Media Monday; their challenge this week is Moon/Lunar. Here is my take on the moon.