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13 December 2010

Sketch Give Away Update

Considering my schedule and with the holidays coming up I will am going to delay the sketch giveaway till the beginning of 2011.

Thanks again for all of you following the blog.

Best- Joshua

12 December 2010


Today on a rainy sunday I've been thinking about routines.
My questions are pretty simple ones. They are based around my desire to do more; always pushing to do more.

What creates the most positive, creative environment?
How do I structure my day to enhance my productivity, and, subsequently, my ideas?

It can be elusive. The notion of putting your creative time into a schedule could be cringing to me and many others. However, at the same time its possible. I've been looking at a great website to discover what many artists have to say about their valuable time and how they manage it. The excerpt below is taken from this site:Daily Routines

Gerhard Richter
He sticks to a strict routine, waking at 6:15 every morning. He makes breakfast for his family, takes Ella to school at 7:20 and is in the studio by 8. At 1 o'clock, he crosses the garden from the studio back to the house. The grass in the garden is uncut. Richter proudly points this out, to show that even it is a matter of his choosing, not by chance. At 1 o'clock, he eats lunch in the dining room, alone. A housekeeper lays out the same meal for him each day: yogurt, tomatoes, bread, olive oil and chamomile tea.

After lunch, Richter returns to his studio to work into the evening. ''I have always been structured,'' he explains. ''What has changed is the proportions. Now it is eight hours of paperwork and one of painting.'' He claims to waste time -- on the house, the garden -- although this is hard to believe. ''I go to the studio every day, but I don't paint every day. I love playing with my architectural models. I love making plans. I could spend my life arranging things. Weeks go by, and I don't paint until finally I can't stand it any longer. I get fed up. I almost don't want to talk about it, because I don't want to become self-conscious about it, but perhaps I create these little crises as a kind of a secret strategy to push myself. It is a danger to wait around for an idea to occur to you. You have to find the idea.'' As he talks, I notice a single drop of paint on the floor beneath one of his abstract pictures, the only thing out of place in the studio.

The New York Times Magazine, January 27, 2002

(Thanks to Dylan Chatain.)

Have a look as it might provide insight for your own needs as a creative. Or just make you feel not so bad that massively well known artists can be as quirky in their approach to art.

Below are a few pages from not my most recent sketchbook but from the one before it. I"ll just note how differently one sketchbook can be to another. Enjoy your Sunday!

Now that my blog followers has hit the 100 mark I will be putting up a sketch that one of you will take home for free.
It's my thank you to all of you. Look for details on monday.

30 November 2010

Works on Paper Show

I'll be displaying a few works on paper in a show opening up this Friday, Dec. 3rd at Adam Cave Fine Art
Headlining the show will be French- based Japanese artist Mikio Watanabe. Mr Watanabe uses a Mezzotint Process. ( Since I have no clue what that is I will direct you to the link to find out.) Regardless of his process the results are stunning especially for being so small. They really draw you in with the scale and force intimacy with each of the pieces.
Here are a few samples of his work.

Mikio Watanabe - Memoire d'eau IV - Printmaking - Mezzotint on Paper - 6" h X 4" w

Mikio Watanabe - S'etendre - Printmaking - Mezzotint on Paper - 3" h X 8" w

Here are three of my four contributions to the group show. I have always wanted to use oil on unprimed illustration board. Contemporary artists and historically significant ones alike have utilized cardboard and other surfaces to get ideas out on. Considering there are many examples of paintings on different types of surface still in existence, I wasn't concerned about the archival nature of oil on illustration board. They should last longer than I will be around that's for sure. How the surface received the oils altered my approach and paint application. It ended be a good change of pace to my other work.
Each image is 15"x10". Two are painted on hot press and two on cold press illustration board.

Blank pages

In Another Time

Signals Overheard

Adam Cave Fine Art
115-1/2 East Hargett Street, 2nd Floor
Raleigh, NC 27601
(919) 838-6692

Reception from 6-9pm

We are highlighting small works, paintings and prints on paper. Join us for our opening reception this Friday and the debut of our featured artist from Paris, Japanese engraver Mikio Watanabe. Other featured artists include: Joshua Flint, John D. Gall , Susan Baehmann, Matt Lively, Donald Furst, Diana Bloomfield.

26 November 2010

I swear my bulldog is the epitomy of relaxed. . . . she just oozes sleepy time. Very appropriate considering the holidays.

Thank you to everyone who has left comments recently. It's always great to hear your thoughts, insights, and opinions.

If anyone ever has a direct question or comment regarding my work, my process or approach I'll get back to you.

21 November 2010

11 November 2010

What I know

Long has been the wisdom to paint what you know . . . well I am trying to get to know: Chickens.
They are strange, strange animals and could find their way into a painting.

Between this post and the last one (with kanevsky's cow) please don't confuse my blog for the farmer's almanac.

Have a good day. . . . .sunrise is at 6:43 AM and sunset at 5:11 PM . . . . moonrise . . . is . . .a .t. . . . . 1 . . .1 . . .: . . 3. . . . . . . . . . . .

04 November 2010

Paint a . . .

. . . .cow's backside.

This initial thought should be taken very much tongue in cheek. The artist of the image is one who I deeply admire and respect. His influence is obvious on the contemporary art landscape, with many painters incorporating elements of his style but not the knowledge behind it, which solely remains his. However, that is a side note and personal opinion, of which, I'm generally inclined to give, seeing as I am the author of this massively important blog (Not). 'Not' jokes are tough to pull off in print and are from the nineties, so we move on.

Let me get back on track about my original statement focusing on painting something as unusual as the rear end of a pasture animal. Like many artist's I have these 'what now' moments in my daily life as an artist. Mr. Kanevsky clearly has the belief and confidence to approach whatever subject matter that he feels is necessary for him to paint. It becomes less about the object(s) and more about one's ability to tap into whatever notion that captured your imagination. As if seeing this thing woke something up inside that you hadn't realized. Ultimately, this painting reminds me to embrace the unknown, not get stuck doing the same things or painting them, and to take a chance. As someone once not so famous asked " Why go out on a limb?", and that famous person said, " Because that is where the fruit is." Thanks quotable famous guy . . . I don't even remember who you were talking to, weird that.

There you have it, we remember the ones following their instinct and being true to themselves, maintaining their authenticity.
As we all know it's easier said than done. If painting was easy then everyone would be doing it and its inherent value would diminish.

Top image: Alex Kanevsky, 'Irish Cow', 32"x66", oil on linen.

Here's one of my newest below: 18"x14", oil on board

Also there is half a dozen or so new paintings up on my website in the urban scenes gallery and still-life gallery. Link to that is on the sidebar.

For everyone that drops in on this blog, thank you for the support and interest.

28 October 2010

I will never neglect you again . . . .

. . . and I mean it this time, Blog. But I don't. I can't make promises to computer devices.

'Compassed By Night', I'm only 7" x 5" oh so small, painted on board. . . . . .with love and a little violence.


The dust will be knocked off this thing and it'll be rolling out more before you know it. So grab some popcorn and a bevie, go look at something amazing (if you need suggestions leave em in the comment section) and then return . . . to . . . . be . . . underwhelmed. .. .um, is that even a word. It's not. See, we are still working the kinks out of this side of the internet.

29 September 2010

Post September Show, etc.

I wrapped up my second show of the year (earlier this month) and now its on to bigger and better things. . . ..erm, well, yeah, . . .um . . . . . . . . . . which is? Then the thought " what the hell is that going to be?" floods my brain. I am left in a vacuum after having shows. Do other artists get this? Hopefully. It feels like I worked towards this great conclusion. It's all very exciting and nerve wracking to a certain degree. Then, nothing. The rush is gone. A recuperation period is needed, albeit pretty short, and then onto the next thing. Whatever that is.

Inevitably, I have this image of a man starring into the distance of a far off landscape (see drawing below). Everything is stretched out before him and he has to cover that ground again to reach some place new and exciting. It's all like a modern Sisyphus tale. Except replace a massive rock with canvas, oils and brushes. The hill wouldn't be as steep. Our tale is for artists not fallen demi-gods, yeah, certainly not a steep hill. Ours is more of a gentle slope one would find at a golf course. In the contemporary version we'd reach the top, while Sisyphus never quite manages it. All the while he has vultures that eat at an open wound in his stomach while pushing the rock. Now that I think about, its nothing like this specific mythological tale . . . . . sorry, day dream over. I want to stay as far away from that scenario as possible. Day dream way over!

Also here is a little BW painting, 12"x12" in oils.

till next time world wide webbers.

08 September 2010

Movie time

Little Big Berlin from pilpop on Vimeo.

Sit Back + Relax = Enjoy the Sights and Sounds of Berlin.*

* I would encourage full screen mode for this.

25 August 2010

Upcoming Show at Peterson-Cody Gallery

Honored to be featured in American Art Collector, the September Issue, for an upcoming show with Craig Nelson at the Peterson-Cody Gallery. The feature looks great.

Absolutely delighted to have a show with an artist and educator that allowed me plenty of leeway in my final year of undergrad studies. I didn't think at the time that we would be having a show together eight years later.

16 August 2010

Sketch Dump . .

. . . Ok not the best choice of words maybe to describe a load of drawings. Duly noted.

I have a show coming up this September in Santa Fe at the Peterson Cody Gallery. So expect a selection of images and news related to it soon.

Until I do, here is some more sketchbook.

31 July 2010

Small Demos

These two small ( 7" x 5", oil on panel) portrait studies were done as demos recently.

The first one was done at Robert Lange Studios. Charles Williams and myself were in the gallery on Saturday, July 17th painting for whomever was there. With many of the shows the artists will demo the weekend of the opening. If you are in the area head on over and learn, watch, or pillory the artists while they paint. Look for upcoming opportunities for these events. As a fellow painter or an admirer of the arts it is always very informative to see an artist at work.

I painted my 'vision' of Charles. However, he was in constant motion while he painted. With most artists they move while they work, so his pacing and my point of view was also varied. The light remained consistent which allowed me to piece together an image of him. With a figure in motion my aim was to take away the overall color that made up his flesh tones. His likeness was not important and I used him as a vehicle for my imagination. It was definitely challenging to work this way while a group of folks watched.

This one was painted as a demo for a class I was teaching at Artspace here in Raleigh. The intention was to remind the students of their approach to realizing an idea and how important it is to have those foundational building blocks in the beginning stages. This was done fairly quickly, maybe 30 minutes, in front of the model and another 10 from memory. I didn't add many stokes or details in this "touch up" phase, I simply pushed paint around and worked on the edges. Sometimes these quick demos come off other times they don't, ending up as more of training for the eye than a finished painting. I thought this one came together pretty well.

26 July 2010

Charleston Gallery Round Up

Here's a good run down of the various art on offer in Charleston this month, albeit we are now towards the tail end of it. Better late th . . . a . . . . . . . n . . . . . . . . . . .

Nice little bit with me and Charles Williams about the show, plus you might discover other artists or galleries that make you feel good, in the right way, not the wrong, or perhaps both. Now I'm confused. Oh its late, I'll cut out the euphemisms because I am tired and I will probably mix them up, leading to more waffling.

Charleston Gallery Review

I'd like to say thank you to Amy Mercer at the Charleston City Paper for the write up.

Some dead hummingbirds, maybe they'll pop up in a still life.

That's all for you lot. Till next time.

19 June 2010

Full Circle

A page pulled from my sketchbook shows three examples of how I think and what I use a sketchbook for. Looking at other artist's sketches are far more interesting than seeing their finished work. As lovely as it is to see the end result, I want to understand their thoughts before that final stage. It possibly gives me a greater understanding of myself as an artist. Perhaps seeing others and how they do things will unlock more of what I am after; providing knowledge on how I can get there. It is about finding authenticity and trusting my choices. As long as I don't look to a select few artists for inspiration then the chances are it'll never look like someone else. I try to soak up as much media, in all varieties, to inform my process. As with everything I always want to feel like I am learning and that I ever have something "figured out". How boring would that be?!
If you take a look at the lower left sketch, that was my initial idea for a painting, and the final piece below.

Perhaps if I wasn't wrapped up in finalizing everything for this show, and also getting things going for my next one, I might be able to provide better perspective or instructive thought about the development of my process. And now thinking of it, I should have taken photos along the stages of the painting to show where I changed my mind about the design. It's not what I intended originally and that provided far too much deliberating, especially when you think that you have it right. However, I did change the background and value pattern in the piece and everything worked out well. It was one of those times when the painting didn't seem 'right.' I am always working towards changing the painting till it has a certain quality that piques my eye. If it doesn't then I might as well mess it up and try to find the new direction of the piece. Timidity is my enemy, oh and time too.

End result of the piece that it ended up promoting the show on this months issue of American Art Collector. Details of the show are above and on my website
All the new pieces will be on the website next week when the show opens.

10 June 2010

The streets . . . .

. . . .are rough and tough! As many rappers and country music stars have told me. One loses his bling the other loses his dog, which one is more important? hmmm. I'll save that mental dilemma for another day.

Not my streets, these streets are full of wonderful people going about their lives in a orderly fashion as seen in my sketch. Well that sounds quite boring but could be interesting. Whoa, even more to ponder.

I often think about how we travel around emerged in seas of people yet are rafts unto ourselves. Our minds are occupied at the task at hand or really looking towards a projected goal, which is the future. A place that doesn't quite exist but we can almost reach it. Ohh, now that sounds exciting!

So really when we do this we end up living a sort of quasi-present existence and miss the immediate here and now. Why do car accidents happen, beyond shit driving? Well I blame this mental state for a lot of shit driving. Just yesterday, I saw a woman get hit by an SUV in the crosswalk. Not sure who wasn't paying attention, but their immediate existence was being disregarded. Thus the unfortunate event of a human getting tagged by a huge, moving metal object. In the end the woman was a bit shocked but seemed ok. Both looked to be ignoring their immediate existence. The woman moving boldly into the crosswalk unaware that cars move in those lanes and the driver probably thinking about other cars not people; she could have been texting, or looking at her teeth, or maybe she didn't like pedestrians that day. who knows, but I like to think about the possibilities. Only because the woman was ok can I make light of the situation.

I guess thats why I like people watching, but not in that voyeuristic, freaky sort of way, but more as a cultural anthropologist. . . .so with many of these sketches that's what I am exploring. The innate qualities of paint help convey the message by drips, drops, slathers, translucency, etc.

enough snark for your thursday.

06 June 2010

More Studies, Pt. Deux

A few more sketchbook paintings from the vault. As with the ones below roughly 5.5" x 9" and mixed media.
As always contact if interested:

I have a two person show with Charles Williams coming up next month at Robert Lange Studios on July 16th. I'll post more the closer it gets to the opening. I do know that our show preview will be in the July Issue of American Art Collector.
Let's just say I am glad its mid month.

More to Come.

. . . . till later.

01 June 2010

More Studies

Couple more sketchbook paintings. Again an ink drawing, brought to various stages of detail and finish, with gouache painted on top.

As with all of these sketchbook studies, if you are interested in purchasing any of them please contact me at

I thought it was interesting the way this father had hoisted his daughter up on his shoulder and was carrying her around.

Apparently there is a sad panda walking around the streets of New York. . . . . . .its hard to imagine it being sad, so I made mine look more curious.

30 May 2010


A couple of little mixed media paintings pulled from my sketchbook, so around 5"x9". Both are mixed media. Basically a pen sketch with gouache layered in over the top of it. I might be doing paintings of bicyclists because we are bereft of quality bike lanes and really just the infrastructure to bike in North Carolina. I mean hell, we don't even have sidewalks or proper bus stops for folks using something besides a car. Its ridiculous. As if we were fully formed in this life attached to a environmentally destroying, metal object to carry us like a womb for a whole new world we can't wait to destroy. So far BP is doing a good job for all of us who haven't chipped in yet.

hopefully I didn't bum you out.

24 May 2010

It's Personal . . . .

12"x12", oil on birch

A little personal painting, done, just because it had to be done.

Also because zeppelins are cool and they aren't in our daily life, unlike this kid. . . . . . . . and flight is weird, regardless of the means to perform the feat.

Till next time. . . . . . . . . .

10 May 2010

Give and Take, come on people!

Hopefully the title will shock you into action . . . . all for a good cause.

Give and Take: That is the event happening at Artspace this Thursday in downtown Raleigh. There are 25 works for only $25and 50 artists donating work you can pick up for a cool 50 bucks!!!!! Seriously, thats a steal. Instead of paying for the art its like you're stealing it. There will also be 5 works auctioned off.

All of this is for scholarships to give local youth the chance to attend arts education classes this summer. I'll be teaching two classes so hopefully the proceeds can bring a few more deserving kids into the classroom. I hear its a bit crazy and the paintings fly off the walls and into the hands of the fortunate early arrivers. (Is arrivers even a word?!) The US educational system does not offer enough for creative thinkers focusing on the arts, so these programs are huge for aspiring young artists.

201 East Davie
Raleigh, NC 27603

Thursday, May 13th, 7-11pm
Tickets at the door.

Below is my donation to the event:
Eclipse, 12"x12", oil on panel.

Preview the artwork here

30 April 2010

Goauche studies

As I have been prepping for two upcoming shows my sketchbook has been in constant use. From silly little scribbles to full blown studies each one has helped me find the types of paintings I am most gravitating towards right now. I usually have a few different types of work going and these series can stay completely separate in their final design, but I've noticed by spending more time in my sketchbook these ideas have been coalescing. By stripping out the color in some of my previous building paintings I'm more thoughtful in my approach to using color when I bring back a full palette.

I often think about authenticity with art and what makes mine, or yours, or that other artist's work, authentic. My sketches, to me, have some immediacy in creation and feeling that can get lost when I switch to oils and paint on canvas. It would be nice if this innate 'sketch' quality could show itself more and more in my oil painting. My attempts to bring my mind together with my medium has me constantly reshaping my approach to oils. I've started off a new painting using small brushes only, then on the next new one I started with big brushes only. I've been mixing big batches of paint having both thin, transparent and thick, buttery qualities. I've switched from bristle to sable fluently throughout a painting's development. As of yet I don't think this more authentic feel maintained in a sketch has really translated to the oils. Thus my constant experimenting in my approach to best accompany my thought process on the day.
At least that's how it feels on this lazy sunday, and maybe my mind hasn't kicked into gear.

I will be matting and framing these studies to accompany the oil paintings for the shows coming up. It seems important to lay bare how I do my work and show how I think, giving the viewer a greater perspective of my process. Both studies are done in gouache and are 9"x5.5" ish.

11 April 2010

I continue to do these small still-lifes that just focus on a single fruit or perhaps a small cluster of fruit. I am not trying to render the object as a technical exercise but as a way to move beyond what could be fairly bland subject matter towards allusions to the entire process of life and death, that is encapsulated by a ripening piece of fruit.

As I am prepping for shows in the summer and fall I will put those paintings up closer to these dates. So maybe less fully realized paintings but lots of studies and sketchbook pages, which is what this blog of mine was about in the first place.