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Friday, November 28, 2008

Black Friday (sounds ominous, doesn't it?)

Today I have no kinks in my shoulders. Stress build-up from more than 7 years seems to be on a decline. I am sitting in the office that I thought was wasted space, having spent the last 2 hours re-wiring our network so the printers and vonage phones will work. It is NOT wasted space at all. Actually a potentially cozy spot, complete with a chair/ottoman for some quiet reading.

Kevin, Betsy, and Liam (addie the lab, and ernie the lakeland terrier) arrived from Denver after a 13 or so hour drive. Liam was SO pitiful...his routine was all out of whack. He was entitled to every fussy minute he had. For 9 weeks old, he is really doing good. I want to scream too after a drive like that! Kevin and Betsy had eyes that were kinda scary...couple of beers fixed that. Everyone got a good night's sleep, and Betsy declared the new room better than the one at the old house.

Turkey day was GREAT. We had new friends (Tim, Shandine, Hannah, Seth Tyler), old friends (Ron and Pam), Family (M&D, Randy's M&D, Betsy/Kevin/Liam, Mark and Lisa, Jessie (Jesse boyfriend), Josh...

New friends cycle in and out, some staying longer than others. The best friends are the ones who cycle in and stay. Two of our best BFFs live in Little Rock, and we don't get to see them near enough. Susan and Sharron have seen me through several last names, and many of the wheel of fortune's ups and downs. I never intended my blog to be anything other than to show the life and times of being an surely is NOT to be construed to be a weekly 'bulletin' that some people still write once a year for their christmas cards! I've received many thank you's from artists I have never met for the upbeat, sometimes silly entries I make that put smiles on their faces...all of which somehow relate to 'what keeps me in front of the easel'.

Weather was great yesterday. New house backs up to a wonderful 18" thick stone/brick wall. Many of us yesterday enjoyed eating outside, moving chairs as the sun travelled across the winter sky. When the last bit of sun was replaced with shade, we reluctantly went back inside. From 3 months to 90 years young, it reminded me of Europe. People floating back and forth, keeping in touch with those inside around the dining room table, catching a bit of ham or pie on their way back and forth, no one in a great hurry to leave. We joked about, 'here, move your chair over by the pool'. All the chairs that filled 3 levels of deck before gave us plenty of choices for a grassy, European looking yard. And if you can't tell how relaxed I was, I didn't even bring out my camera!

Now, for painting updates. I did this 2 weeks ago at Tim's...another 'see if you can copy a painting of mine' experiment. Well, I did, and it is SO different from his...not better, just different. What fun! Without all the tedium of setting up your own still life. Below are the 2 for comparison...his is much more vibrant color, mine is just loose. I didn't come anywhere close to a 'copy'...and his red is much more intense. Until you look at them together, mine looks pretty good. I just wish you could see the one swoosh I made on that front onion with pure pigment!

This was the last class...I feel much better about this one. Tim's is on the left. I was just getting ready to 'refine' the foreground when he stopped me. He says he likes mine better because it is more 'fresh'. I will learn when to quit.
Keep in mind that mine are being done with a huge advantage of being able to copy his composition...and still life setups. Easily 1/2 of the process. So, when I can call it done after an hour and a half, that is really cheating. But fun. He and I are still having fun seeing how different Ann Templeton's palette of colors work. I'm not opposed to using other pigments, but I really want to discover nuances of her palette before I jump to something different.

I gave me a break today. The kids left late morning with lint in their eyes, leaving me with an opportunity to PAINT! I have another 10 years of unpacking to do, and nest making, picture hanging to do, but I wanted to savor the quiet. 

Until my new studio space is empied of boxes, and we figure out how to finish it out, I am going to set up in a corner of the breakfast room with all that wonderful north light. By the time I figured out what gear I wanted to get out, I only had an hour of daylight left. This is a combination photo I took of the Cape Town Bay at sunset in 2002, xmas, at Mike and Paulette's house. 

Got a good start. We'll see how much influence Tim has on my paintings as this one progresses. Teehee. Like I want you to believe he has none. Just his presence in the room talking, chatting about Sargent or Schmid while I potz around moving pigment like I know what I am doing has no effect. 

Then, all of a sudden, he asks if I'm stuck...and with a 'May I', he sits down and makes one brush stroke that brings it all together.

And I have people asking me to teach. What folly!



vickiandrandyrossart said...

I'm posting this for Julie, who is having trouble with google.

As always, I love, enjoy , and giggle thru your blog! You say funny things, wise things, interesting things. I can never make Google accept my password, so have given up and will just reply via email. The new house sounds wonderful, and your Thanksgiving too. Tim and Shandine are wonderful people.... and he is a great teacher.

Julie Mayser

Erika Nelson said...

As usual you're busy as ever Red Energizer Bunny (yes a new name).

Love your new paintings, my fave is the cloud painting, rich baby, rich! I miss the bigger images so I can see more, but from what I can tell in the small pics, I like your rendition more too.

Glad you had a perfect Thanksgiving and I bet you're feeling very thankful too huh Red :) HUGS!

I didn't get enough turkey so I'm planning to roast my own this week - darn it's just not a Thanksgiving without leftover for cripessakes! But I love you!

vickiandrandyrossart said...

Felt great to set up painting in the new house. Looking forward to getting the studio unpacked...I had all my en plein air stuff in my car for 2 weeks, knowing I'd need access to it.

Can't believe you didn't get turkey! Randy and I had the last of our leftovers last night. Just the right amount.


Robin Maria Pedrero said...

Just love the looseness in the bottom one

vickiandrandyrossart said...

Thanks, Robin. I've been told I need to slow down but when I do that things become overworked. These colors were so much fun to work with!

vickiandrandyrossart said...

Thanks, Robin. I've been told I need to slow down but when I do that things become overworked. These colors were so much fun to work with!