Friday, June 24, 2011

A studio tour and a portrait is home!

I feel very lucky to be featured on a couple of wonderful blogs today.

First off is a delightful photo essay on the arrival and presentation of the Boxer portrait.  I adore the pictures of the little boy and how big his dad's smile is!  Thank you so much Jackie...these photos are so special!  It means so much to me when a fellow artist (you can see Jackie's delightful art shop here) has such high praise for my work.

"One More Round"

Next is a studio tour that I put together as a series of short videos for a lovely friend, art collector, and talented glass artist, Jennifer Cameron from Glass Addictions.

She suggested a video tour, and I did my best to speak in my "sophisticated artist voice" and not my "mommy is really stressed out right now and if you don't stop torturing your sister I am going to throw you in the lake" voice.  Although, that would have been kind of funny...and angry studio tour....maybe next time :)

So please check out both blogs and comment and share - thank you so much to both of these wonderful talented women!!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day Portrait - The Boxer

I was so excited to work on this awesome Father's day gift for an athlete from his wife.  Inspired by a portrait I painted of a bodybuilder with a superman tattoo, she sent me several photos of her husband in and out of the boxing ring.  I combined a couple of the photos for the large oil portrait.

I wanted to create a strong, energetic, and powerful image of an athlete.

There are several of layers of color, and I built up a lot of texture on the surface as well.

This was one of my favorite parts - the small scene of him boxing in the ring.  I like the loose brushwork and the indication of the feet without defining everything.  The movement of the boxers is a great compliment to his stoic gaze above.

Sometimes I am diligent about taking process photos, and this was one of those paintings that inspired me to capture each stage.  I linked the photos together in this short video...

Creating custom portraits like this are truly rewarding.

Thursday, June 16, 2011


OK I was a little bummed out during my last post, and I'm not normally like that.  I've been rejected before.  Trust me.  I should be used to it by now!

I was lucky to gain a little perspective the other night.  A good friend and fellow artist got two pieces in the show that I did not get into, and for one of the pieces, this was her third time entering the same piece, and it finally got accepted.

I really am excited for her, and it humbled me, too.  Every juror is different, and each show has a different look and feel, and maybe my work just wasn't right for this year's show.  I am inspired by her to keep trying, keep entering, keep creating, because she believes in her work - and I should, too.

I look forward to opening night so that I can support my fellow artists and their wonderful work!

Monday, June 13, 2011


It never gets old.  Rejection still stings.  OK rejection sucks.  As an artist it comes with the territory.  I have good days and bad days in the studio, I know that not every piece I make is perfect, good, or even salvageable.  Sometimes the need to create is just that - a need to create, and if nothing good comes out of it that's fine.

When I enter a juried show, it's a nerve racking experience.  What will the juror be LOOKING for? What will they WANT?  What if I submit this piece and they reject it, yet they would actually select that piece?  What if this slide doesn't show the piece well enough?  Urg.  It's a wonder I enter a show at all...

But it's part of the whole process! Art can not exist in a vacuum.  It needs to be seen.  It needs context.  It needs to hold up in a room full of other pieces, being part of the conversation.   I enter some shows because the group is prestigious, the juror is well known or the venue is beautiful.  Sometime I enter local shows because the entry fee will be supporting a good facility.

So why am I still upset about a rejection letter i got three days ago?!? Rejection.  I can handle it when 1000 people look at a piece of my work yet no one buys it, why can't I handle the fact that one juror decided not to include my work in a show?

I submitted, what I thought, were three of the strongest pieces I created this past year, excited about showing them locally, since they are so heavy, and I couldn't ship them to a show in California, for example.  Now I question those pieces - are they technically good, but emotionally stunted?  Are they too - pretty? all flash and no substance?

I guess at the end of the day I need to take the good with the bad, the praise along side the critique.  And keep creating, because the next opportunity - I am not going to pass it up!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Blurring the Line - Dance and Movement

Sitting here watching "So You Think You Can Dance" and reflecting on my years as a dancer...I loved it! I miss it!  I wish I was younger so I could try out for the show!!!

But something else cool crossed my path today.  The addictive page Design D'Autore on Facebook floods your news feed with delicious eye candy every day.  In the album Dance, they posted a few images from photographer William Wadman.

They took my breath away - as a dancer, and as an artist.  For my MFA thesis exhibit at TCU, my body of work was all about capturing the movement, the energy, the dynamics of dance in my paintings.  Not stagnant figures, but layers of arms, legs, torsos, hands and feet moving together across the canvas in layers of paint and charcoal.

This is "Can You Feel It", a very large canvas.

This photographer was capturing on film what I was striving for on the canvas!  I loved it.

Another large painting from the series, "Movement in Thirds"

It's always a delight to come across another artist who is striving for some of the same goals in a different media - how we both came to a different solution to capture a similar feel.