Friday, August 28, 2009

New figure drawings from the male nude model...sharpies, and not so sharpies

I had what I would refer to as a challenging night of figure drawing yesterday! Mike the Model started out with some incredible gesture poses. He recently checked out a book that had a variety of "extreme foreshortening poses" and tried a few out for us last night.

The drawing above was a fifteen minute drawing and I used a thin Sharpie marker on white mat board. I liked the idea that I wouldn't be able to correct my lines by erasing - I'd have to keep going over the lines until I got it right. I like the immediacy of the media and I could get a variety of thickness in the line if I changed the pressure. I'd still like to go back and add more layers and value range.

The second drawing was for an hour and a half (with breaks!) I've done several figure drawings of the same model in the past, and I seem to favor either black and white or grey palettes when drawing. So I forced myself to be more colorful.

I'm particularly fond of this section - I think all of the colors came together very well, and I like the layers of color in the shadows. The background colors may still change...we will see! I shall live with it for a little bit and see what happens!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

BOGO Fine Art Print Sale in my Etsy Shop

This is THE BIG SALE! This only happens ONCE this year!

Buy One $15 Fine Art Print and
Get one FREE!

Buy your first print, make a note to the seller of your choice for your FREE print, and that's it! You're all set!

LIMIT: One free print per customer!

*****While supplies last!*****
Sale ends Sunday August 30th

Help my Local Gallery win this Shine a Light Contest!

The local gallery in Woodstock, Ga - Roomscapes Gallery and Heartworks Art Studio - is an amazing Gallery and Studio space that has, despite all odds of the economic downturn has managed to start building an impressive business in an otherwise empty complex. Owners Shawn and Debbie have truly dedicated themselves to making their business work, and have showcased some wonderful local talent.

As suggested in the article, their business does not end at their front door. They truly part of the artistic community, participating in joint shows with fellow galleries, sponsoring neighborhood art events (such as the chalk walk competition, above), and getting involved in community projects.

Should they win this competition, it means $100,000 Grant for their business! I know that in their hands, that money would impact the entire community in an amazing way.

I hope you take a moment to click on the link above, register on the site and VOTE for their story. They did not nominate themselves! A loyal patron and friend got them into the contest.

And, if you are ever in Woodstock, GA - I hope you come in to visit!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

New Poetry inspired by My Art

The human figure - especially the nude female - has been a dominant subject in my art for many years. I can't pinpoint the definitive reason why, although it partly has to do with my history as a dancer, my relationship with my sisters,and even my interactions with the women in my life in general.

As an artist, it's been difficult to answer with all certainty "this is what my art MEANS". In graduate school we had to defend and explain our work in critiques on a regular basis. I was working on large scale paintings of dancers, and had specific goals and ideas in mind.

But that is not always the case with each and every painting. Maybe the creation has come first, and the meaning is not yet clear to me.

One of my greatest joys comes from hearing what other people tell me my work means to them. I remember displaying my undergraduate thesis exhibit, and having numerous people come up to me and tell my why they liked a particular piece - they all had different reasons why, and none of their reasons matched my own! I loved it! It was truly mind blowing to have someone connect with my work and then share with me how it made them feel.

Today, my friend Laura gave me an incredibly high compliment. She has composed a poem inspired by one of my pieces, and I'd like to share it with you.


You left a long time ago
Without going anywhere
Still breathing my air,
still sharing my space,
You built up a convenient wall
of hard bricks and cemented lies,
You wrapped me up in a blanket of sorrow!
Lying down on this bed of torment
I followed hopes and dreams
I got nowhere
I rolled myself up
In a contortion of nerves and muscles
I waited for you to come back!
But you had left without going,
You were standing on the other side,
Staring at me from the back of that wall
Empty cavities
Looking at curves and shadows of us
I thought we were invincible,
But I lost!
And loosing I gained anxiety,
I felt the failure,
Like a leaf that cannot find the ground
Floating on toxic air,
Belongs to nothing!
I stretched my ideas
I reached the visions of my soul
And I saw you there
Unreal and solid...
You had never left without going
You were still holding me
I was your everything
You were my Joy.

Laura has also selected one of my figure paintings for her book cover, which is being published this fall. This means so much to me, Laura...thank you!

Friday, August 21, 2009

New Studio Space - wonderful atmosphere for our figure drawing group!

What a wonderful evening of drawing from the live model last night. It was our first session in the new gallery space (new to us, anyway!) on main Street in Woodstock - the gallery of Ann Litrel. With the high ceilings and open floor, everyone can get a great view of the model A ten minute pose - what a lovely curve in the model's back. Charcoal drawing on white paper.

A one hour pose - Nupastel on Cream mat board (photo is the model from the opposite angle)

A 45 minute pose - I love the drama in this drawing! White and black charcoal drawing on grey mat board.

We started with a couple of short, 5 and 10 minute poses, then moved into hour long poses for the rest of the evening. Everyone did wonderful work! (you can see mis K's work on the easel in the photo above!)

If you are interested in joining our group, please see the model schedule. All skill levels and media are welcome - this is an open studio, no instruction!
You can see more of my figure drawings in my Fine Art on Etsy shop.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Open Figure Drawing Group - Woodstock, GA

Our figure drawing group is finally getting back together here in Woodstock, GA. We will be meeting at Ann Litrel Art on Main Street. If you would like any more info please post your e-mail and I will add you to my list!

If you are thinking of attending for the first time, please let me know!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Very Cool Etsy Treasury Feature

Etsy has a very cool feature that allows members to "curate" collections of Etsy finds called "Treasuries". I have been featured in some gorgeous collections, but this collection of Etsy finds really took my breath away! Curated by - thanks for the great collection!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

New Drawing From the Live Female Model

Sorry I couldn't add these pictures to my last post - this is the drawing I did last night from the live model during the opening last night. It was only about 45 minutes of drawing time because I kept talking to all of our wonderful guests!
This is drawn on a grey pastel board (a pre-made gessoed board that has the texture of a very fine sand-paper) I started sketching the figure in with a soft grey and then slowly added the dark shadows and hi-lights.
It's always fun to draw with an audience and hear the comments as I work!

Art Show Opening and A Live Model Drawing Demo...what a fun evening!

I wanted to share a few photos from the beautiful show of portrait and figurative work that was on display at Ann Litrel Art last night and show some pictures of the artists at work as we drew from the live model!

Thank you to everyone who came out to see the show!
My friend and fellow artist checking out my work in progress~

A fellow artist drawing from the live model as guests visit the gallery.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Portraits and Figurative Art - written by ME! - published in a local magazine

Here in Woodstock GA we are very lucky to have a couple of very nice local magazines published on a monthly basis. Around Town (TowneLaker) Magazine shares a variety of articles - health and happiness, marriage advice, mom advice and stories, even decorating ideas.

Last month I noticed a feature called "Art Scene" and, anticipating our "Face and Figure:Portraits and Figurative Art" show coming up this month, I submitted an article about Portrait and Figurative art.

I wanted to encourage our local community, artists and art appreciators, to think about why artists so often chose the figure as a subject matter. Some of my reasons included sharing a common experience or expressing an emotion that otherwise could not be expressed.

I'm not a very seasoned writer, but I hope that the article is well received and our community comes together to support some great local artists AND two VERY special local galleries!

You can find more info about the two galleries hosting the "Face and Figure" shows on their websites

The opening reception for the show is August 7th from 5:PM - 9:PM at both galleries.
Many thanks to Kara Kiefer and the rest of the Townelaker staff for supporting the local art scene!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Perception is Everything

This story was shared on Etsy and I want to share it with you...

Perception is everything:Washington DC Metro Station on a cold January morning in 2007.

A man played six Bach pieces on a violin for about 45 minutes. During that time approx 2 thousand people went through the station, most of them on their way to work. After 3 minutes a middle aged man noticed there was a musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds and then hurried to meet his schedule.

4 minutes later:the violinist received his first dollar: a woman threw the money in the till and, without stopping, continued to walk.

6 minutes:A young man leaned against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to walk again.

10 minutes:A3 year old boy stopped but his mother tugged him along hurriedly, as the kid stopped to look at the violinist. Finally the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head all the time. This action was repeated by several other children. Every parent, without exception, forced them to move on.

45 minutes:The musician played. Only 6 people stopped and stayed for a while. About 20 gave him money but continued to walk their normal pace.He collected $32.

1 hour:He finished playing and silence took over. No one noticed. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition. No one knew this but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the best musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars. Two days before Joshua Bell sold out a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100.

This is a real story. Joshua Bell playing incognito in the metro station was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and people's priorities.

The questions raised: in a common place environment at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty? Do we stop to appreciate it? Do we recognize talent in an unexpected context? One possible conclusion reached from this experiment could be: If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ....

How many other things are we missing?

From this thread on Etsy

Sunday, August 2, 2009

SOLD - a recent sale...

One of my fellow artist friends gave me the highest of compliments - she purchased this lovely figure drawing from my local gallery. I had framed it in a warm copper-colored frame with a very wide matting - gave it a very modern yet traditional look. Thank you my friend for purchasing my work!