Hello from a sunny, cool, and green day in the valley. I’ve been immersed in painting, garden work, helping with a neighbor’s little horse, taking care of our own pets (it’s hard to watch pets get old, as it is with some people), writing, and studying.
This was Grandpa in late January:
Here he is today–I’m still adjusting light and dark, forms and colors. Slow work, perhaps, but I’m learning as I go. Some dreamlike elements suggested themselves, based on certain memories I have, and particular stories I remember my mother telling me. So–as this is a practice piece, and the end result matters only to me, I’m going with it and trying to solve some technical issues in the process:
Generally it’s improving, but form and expression and certainly color balance still need a ton of work. I’m going to let this dry, then go at it again with glazes and scumbling, dark to light, to try to make it right. There are a few other paintings in progress that I have not shared…a lot of those are so completely experimental, or terrible, I’m going to paint over them and start new pieces over the top. There are currently seven or eight paintings here in various stages of composition (or “decomposition,” maybe–ha!) so I can rotate the work from one to another according to drying time.
Some very interesting things may be in the works…funny, how sometimes events and things here at home end up tying knots with other ‘strings’ from surprising places and distances…serendipitous, startling and sometimes mind-blowing, and hopefully–eventually–sources of inspiration, collaboration, and rich creativity. Say–this week, for me: dreams, unexpected life developments, phone calls or letters present something…then something else in a book brings up a parallel; then it pops up again, from afar, and it suggests to me that Something has quite a sense of humor, and I think if we notice these shifts and happenings, life can be so rich. In this work, this way of seeing and creating, there is no quitting, although things may often become quite confusing or difficult. There is only “do,” “watch,” “make,” “appreciate,” “observe,” “communicate,” “learn,” “love,” (not necessarily in that order, and always appropriate to the situation or ‘thread’ at hand) and repeat: creative process, interwoven with daily life. I consider that my ideal state of being, following the threads and seeing where they lead, and what they make.