Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Problem Solving in Art

          This is the completed image for the most recent painting I shared here. This painting turned out better than I thought it would. When I began, I was not satisfied with how the picture was shaping up. But I do think the finished painting is pretty good. What do you think?

         The current painting that I am working on has been erased and re-started 3-4 times now. Normally when I begin a work, I let the composition flow as I work. This time I have something in mind, and I can't seem to get it quite right. I have found art making to be a process wherein a series of problems are resolved with changes made directly to the image. Each solution usually creates one or two more additional problems, and the art work is not complete until the artist is satisfied with the problem solutions and can live with any remaining issues within the work. This image in particular is giving me issues as I am only getting started.


Normally I would try to have other information on here about a show, or an artists I have discovered. But I haven't really done any of that for a while. So, for now this is what I have. Check back next week, and maybe I will have something else. You could also suggest something in the comments if there is a topic you think I should discuss.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

latest musings

Since I have lately been posting the progress of my paintings as I work on them, here is where the current one stands. It should be finished in a few days.

I have completed the revisions to my artist statement. The greatest difficulty I had here was in trying to write something general. I wanted the statement to broadly reflect all of my work, and as my work has changed over the years it was challenging to compose something that covered everything. The revised statement is shorter, but it talks more about the similar visual keys throughout my work.

I haven't posted it on my Web site yet, I wanted to get some feedback here first. So here it is:

Making art helps me make sense of the world around me. To me it is a mental exercise that promotes free thought and new ideas. It is a way of communicating without using words, and it is a way to promote understanding using visual cues.
The visual cues I rely on most are that of color and line. I like to use color to convey a sense of mood, and I like the energy created by using line to move the viewer through the picture plane. The combination of mood and movement create an image that is difficult to ignore. 
In a world flooded with visual information, I want my work to have an impact and to delight the senses of the viewer.

What do you think? Good? Bad? Indifferent? Please leave responses in the comments.

Monday, March 9, 2015


I'm not certain if I mentioned it or not, but I am planning on finishing at least two paintings every month.The latest image is posted above. I started this goal in February, and I have already posted my two paintings for that month here. In case you missed them, here is a recap:

 "Bowties are cool"

 "By the fire"

I decided that I needed to build up my portfolio, and by setting the goal of at least two paintings a month, I figure by the end of the year I should have a substantial amount of work.

In addition to building up my portfolio I am trying to revamp my artist statement. The current statement I have on my website is a bit old and no longer relevant. Especially as I move to paint more of these orange figures, which is what I am currently interested in.

To help me put together a revised artist statement I have consulted an article in the December/January issue of Professional Artist Magazine. In this issue, author Kathleen Caprio described her process of updating her artist statement and offered four tips to complete the revision. One of the best tips I found was to use fresh language. A friend and I often joke about artists and notions. It seems as if almost all artist statements or interviews with artists describe one notion or another that the artist has had. It has become a joke. Indeed the current statement of my work on the Web site includes the term "notion," so this is definitely one area that I need to change.

If you are struggling to come up with an artist statement, or have just decided it was time to revise your statement, what sorts of things are you thinking about? What do you think you absolutely need in your statement to articulate the nature of your work?  

Monday, March 2, 2015

expensive art

Here is the completed image from last time. I thought that it looked drastically different than the one I posted last time. But in going back I see the differences are very subtle. I'm not sure how I feel about that, other than to say it was mostly finished last time so it makes sense that the finished image would be similar. I finished it about two weeks ago.

I also recently came across an article in Slate describing, or at least attempting to describe, why art is so expensive. I'm not sure agree with the article. Basically it says art is expensive because it can be. People will pay for it. I suppose that answers the question of why it is so expensive, but to me it doesn't really get at the issue. Though, to be honest I'm not sure what the issue is exactly. Why is art so expensive? I can't figure it out. The link to the article is here.