Sunday, May 30, 2010

Killing Time

I'm procrastinating on the eve of the deadline of the first CWP project. But I found this really interesting blog about a guy who wants to draw every person in NYC. No really. Check it out:

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Random Art Thoughts

It's update time on the "Spring" project, and while I have been 3,000 miles away from my painting for the last several days, I did manage to make satisfactory progress before I left. I've blocked out color throughout the whole canvas, and can see the layers of color coming together to make that texture I love so much. I'm eager to return home and jump back into it again.

As a side note I was just wandering through Central Park in NYC and happened upon an artists group working from the scenery around them. Most worked in water color, sketching out the small water fall and surrounding greenery-- it made me think, I need to get out and do this! I never work from life. I think the beauty of working from real life is that it forces you to work quickly and take into account the light and it's affect on the subject matter. I'm sensing our June theme in the making...

Any ideas?

Monday, May 17, 2010

Spring Theme From the East

I have been very motivated by trees in the last couple of months, and have been painting, dreaming and even teaching about them.  My classes have all been very inspired by the whole seed that grows into a tree miracle...and incorporating that into my meditations and using it as a physical as well as metaphorical focus for all aspects of life. 

That being said, I have taken great pleasure in the Spring that we are experiencing here in the South East and using all of it's abundance for inspiring my daily life.  All of the joys of the Magnolia trees, Honeysuckle, Jasmine, Roses, and of course the Azaleas.

What better time to celebrate Spring and Mother Nature, right here after Mother's Day and showing appreciation for all that She gives us.  Creation at it's finest!

Spring Thing: Week One

One week and a little while later...
I've been reading this book called "The Yellow House". It's about Van Gogh and Gaugin and the brief time they spent living together in Arles. Much of the book is about their process: how they lived, where they painted, what they painted. The descriptions inspired my "Spring" work. I'm embracing texture and bright colors and layering paint while trying to work quickly.

I spent far too much time contemplating the subject matter and not nearly enough time executing upon it this last week. I did get started and managed to block out color everywhere on the first sitting. Now to make the perspective more accurate.

We agreed not to discuss the subject matter or post photos of the work in progress, but I will share this one photo- my motivation to get started and move quickly. Some friends gave me this canvas to paint over. While somewhat Spring themed in it's own right, staring at it for days really motivated me to get started by simply painting over it. Hopefully someone doesn't feel the same way about the canvas when I'm through with it!

While I've made progress in burying this original work of art under minimal layers of gesso and paint, the clock is ticking and I'm headed to NY and CT for 6 days, which makes me a little nervous about completing this 36" x 36" monstrosity by the self imposed June 1st deadline.
Oh the pressure...

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Introducing: The Plan

With a name like the Charles Wright Project, this blog could be about anything. I guess that's part of the fun of the name, sweet ambiguity. But really, it's simple. Charles Wright is the starting point. His sculpture class brought Mandy and I together in 1995. I wish I could report that we each had some prolific experience during that semester that made for this stellar artistic expression, but the best thing to come out of that class was our friendship and the years of crazy adventures that followed.

Fifteen years later, Mandy and I live at opposite ends of the country; her in Charleston, SC and me in Portland, OR. Mandy is married and has two beautiful children (that I still haven't met) and I am mother to a Aussie pup who I fear is smarter than me most days. In addition to our geographical divide, lifestyle, career, and regional difference, also separate us. We talk regularly thanks to the wonderful world of Facebook and the internets and it got me thinking...

How do all of those differences affect the art we produce now? How do they alter our individual perspectives on the same ideas or concepts? I am an artist that needs to be held accountable in order to produce work and I've been looking for an excuse to be in touch with Mandy more for years. Here's the plan that accomplishes both: Each month we will post an idea or concept on the blog, then we will each go off and see where inspiration takes us. At the end of the month we will individually post photos of our solution to the query, perhaps with a little explanation of the thought process that brought us to the finished work. I'm looking forward to the dialogue created during and after.

The beauty of this little experiment is we can change the rules as we go along. Try new ideas often, as long as the end result is a finished work. We'll add and remove parameters, work quickly and take our time. For me, this is also about overcoming a phobia of showing my work in a less than perfect state. I rarely finish work because I fear the outcome. I want to to embrace the process and take more creative risks. "Your art is not precious." A close friend has said this to me for years and he's right.

Ultimately, we'd like the blog to be interactive. A means to connect people. Inspire. Create. Not only do we welcome your commentary, we strongly encourage it. If you see a project idea that you want to tackle yourself, be sure to send us your solution so we can include your work in the post. The more people interpret the concept, the better.

So for CWP's first assignment I propose "Spring". We'll keep it open the first time out. Any medium. Any size (larger than 5" x 7"). Create your visual interpretation of Spring. Finished product due: June 1. I also propose a weekly check in. No photos. No description of the subject matter. Just actions or lack thereof.

Ok. Go!