Thursday, October 6, 2011

Appreciation of art

Many years ago, I gave a drawing to a friend as a gift, making sure to frame it nicely and with colors she would like. She hung the work for a few years until the colors went out of fashion, and then placed it in a closet, where it remained for the duration. Feeling astounded, I never worked up the nerve to ask her why. Apparently, it no longer matched the couch.

I took it personally, as most artists would, and spent time wondering if a different piece of art would have been a better gift. At some point, however, the conclusion was reached that not everyone has appreciation for art and what goes into the creative process. Many feel that a wall hanging is simply that.

The painting pictured above was sold sometime ago. I still like looking at it, and I hope whoever owns it does too. My mind often thinks about where they hang and who looks at them after they leave me. For each painting created, a process evolved, a very personal one. The time spent on it, whether lengthy or not, came directly out of my head. It really has little to do with my hands. Knowing this about my own art, makes me dearly love the art I own from other artists, whether paintings, pottery, jewelry, fabric or sculpture. Their hands touched it, and what remains is representation of heart and mind. To me, that is highly valued.

In our society, to many people, artist is not valued in this way. Education doesn't seem to matter anymore. Skill tends to be secondary. Artist is valued by popularity, marketing, trends and often gimmicks. The human race has always been prone to follow the leader, or keep up with the Joneses. Perhaps that's why we have so many artists now, and why the quality is questionable. I know that there are those out there who still get it, but they are becoming fewer.

Many an artist himself has fallen victim to the dollar rat race. It may be naive, but this artist chooses to believe that it isn't about the price tag. It isn't about the glory. It isn't about social climbing. People who think it is, are missing out. Art is about the individual, how the work was born, and what it speaks to you.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

"After the Storm" was in my head on an afternoon soaked with heavy rains and cloudy skies. It was trying to clear, but at that moment, all the foliage was rich with intense color. It was as if each leaf and sprig was limp and downtrodden, not unlike a day in the life of the artist. Hours later, vitality resounds with flowers that pick up their heads, and leaves that quiver gently in the wind, trying to shake off the droplets.

As the sun makes its way out, the terrain is color saturated. Now.......I paint.

Monday, March 14, 2011

January Birches

Winter is winding down, and the snow is starting to melt. The sun returns to us and in it, the birches and the snow glisten. Soon winter solitude will be left behind by warm winds, flowers and beaches. For now, the final blankets of snow slowly diminish, and then disappear.

Monday, March 7, 2011

I dare say a walk in this forest would be beautiful, but thick. The colors are perceived from a warm summer day, which during cold winter months, is something I dream about. We are on the cusp of spring, and the birches are singing.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Michigan Jungle-Donation to DIA

This piece is being donated to the Detroit Institute of Arts. Fundraising involving fine art has become a popular way to gain and maintain the interest of qualified contributors. However, it wouldn't be possible without the generosity of artists. I find that the artists I know, are generous with their work. Feeling good about giving it away is a reward to those who put so much of themselves into the work. Art was meant to be shared, discussed and enjoyed on some level.

I do hope that the fundraiser for DIA is a highly successful one, and I'm glad I could be a part of it.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Details I and II of Dark Pathway

Dark Pathway, 30 x 40 oil on canvas

Often when people see a landscape, they believe there is little more there than what meets the eye. However, everything I paint, especially those works that have no plein air or photographic reference, stem from some area of my brain. For this painting, when I approached the blank canvas, I didn't have a clear idea in mind of what I would lay down. As typical, I drew a few horizon lines in pencil and began applying paint. Getting lost in the colors and shadows, the world around me disappears for awhile, and I know that whatever the resulting painting evolves to be, I have left a bit of myself in the work.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

I am frequently asked "what inspires you?" I could site some philosophical or aesthetic thought process, however, it's very simple. I am inspired by my surroundings in beautiful Northern Michigan. Day by day, it's never the same, and each season brings it's own form of charismatic enticement. Whether the paintings are representational or not has no bearing. Color, shape and texture protrude from being in awe of the wonderful things our creator has made. After all, He is the greatest artist.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Winter months with alot of time spent indoors should be a good motivator to paint. I intend to turn out some large pieces. I already have one. Will post soon.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Birch With Magenta, 10 x 10 oil on canvas

I liked the idea of adding some brighter foreground colors, and these are some of my favorites. Cadmium reds and permanent rose permeate the foreground and capture the eye. Most of the birch paintings that I do, are done without reference, so they exist nowhere except in my thoughts.