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29 March 2008

Life's Not Still

Life's Not Still: A Series Begins.

As we swing further towards spring,
and I yearn for sunshine and warmth,
and its accompanying abundance,
when everything blooms and brightens,
I have been painting fruit.
Yes, . . .fruit!?

I've needed to work from life for a while now and it has been refreshing.
So, I've set out to bring a new twist to a classical subject.

I have been trying to make a fairly static object breathe with life.
A piece of fruit ripens and withers over time, even after its plucked from a tree; so it is changing in front of our very eyes, like humans. An apple lives, dies, embodys centuries old symbolic ideas, and has been a mainstay in still-lifes as long as painting has been around. With this concept in mind, I want these little portraits of fruit to embody those thoughts, and to be just that, intimate personal portraits.

Here is my first attempt at this new series.
The fruit will be kept lifesized in my paintings and thus the canvases will all be quite small as well.
This first one is 6"x6".

Give me feedback about the paintings or your insight in to fruit.

I'll be posting more later this week so check back in, then I am off to NYC, then Bermuda for a wedding, then back to NYC! Should be fun.

14 March 2008

Nouvelles Peintures

A little still-life, 16"X20" on gessobord™. It was nice to work from life and deal with changing lighting conditions. I had to work with a sunset over the course of two evenings, then finish it from memory. The chinese horse is a two hundred year old replica of a thousand year old original. Whoa! I lugged this 30 lb. thing all the way back from Shanghai. It was an unbelievable gift from a great family who I befriended on my trip. If they happen upon the blog I want to say thank you again for the gift. It is a proud reminder of travel, friendship, and ancient art. The flowers are Camelias, from a truly lovely woman's garden. The hand carved wooden chess pieces are from a set I bought when Kracow, Poland years ago. Sort of an international flair to this painting.

As for the old man painting, which is also 16"x20" on gessobord™. I have continued my theme of little genres scenes from my China trip from a few years ago. There are bird sellers/owners who take their birds to market or take them out to the parks each day. They carry them one on each end of a stick. I envisioned this old man from the outskirts plodding into a more urban area. Really more of a vignette, as opposed to an entire scene. This painting has some parts invented, others from memory, all rolled together with my reference. These genre scenes let me connect to a world wholly different from mine and it allows me to reflect on my existence and what I am doing here, in Portland. Perhaps in a way I wouldn't have otherwise.

Thoughts are always welcome. Keep checking in for more work. There will be other visual ideas on here besides the fine art. I am working on a line of illustration based t-shirts with a friend and will post the original illustrations on here in the near future. Then later on the designs as they appear on the tees. Plus other random imagery.

03 March 2008

Art Lookers

Couple of new paintings for the beginning of March . . . . I can't believe it's already March!

Both are keeping with painting smaller canvases and moving through a ton of ideas faster. The scale allows me to constantly make subtle changes in my approach to each idea, and see the outcome without a whole lot of fuss.
Each one is 12"x16".