Flow, 14”x14”, Oil on Canvas I tried to paint a different spot in that creek the night before, with no success. I knew instantly why it hadn’t worked. I was trying to paint everything all at once, and everything at all at once doesn’t work in any part of my life. Saturday had been an… Continue reading What Compels You?
Back to the Land
An interrupted meditation by the Battenkill I’m having a lot of conversations with spring in my work these days. Some days spring is popping; others it’s buried under a fresh dumping of snow. Likewise, some days I paint the conversation with reckless abandon and no image in mind, but as my head turns, outdoors again,… Continue reading Back to the Land
Talking to Spring
Talking to Spring It’s been in the 40s and 50s the last couple of days, and even though there are some sizable snowbanks left, it feels like Mother Nature is ready to keep her annual promise.The light is changing. it lasts longer every day. It seems as if there are even more critters crawling around… Continue reading Talking to Spring
How Do You Do?
Nebula, oil on canvas, 20”x20” Once upon a time I saw myself as (primarily) a writer, and I did my morning pages every day for work without fail. Nowadays my job starts earlier, and there is no time for morning pages or sketches. Sometimes that disconnects me from art like a bird not flying for… Continue reading How Do You Do?
I’m doing a very different set of paintings right now. Winter seems to be losing its grip, the light is glorious as the angle of the sun shifts, but I am still stuck in my inner world. It’s the one I find myself painting recently because, for the first time ever, I have found the… Continue reading Conscious Detachment
Ice Dams, 10" x 20" Sometimes to help someone, you need to disconnect just enough from your empathy to keep the other person from the fog instead of marching into it holding their hand. I’ve had a few such cases at work lately. I can recognize my own traumas in the person I’m helping, but… Continue reading Winter Heat
In the months since we visited the Turner exhibit at the Boston MFA, my art practice has undergone a revolution. Turner’s sketchbooks and studies in watercolor and oil pointed the way to constant, blissfully imperfect practice. Another exhibit and then a new mentor confirmed that, even in a modern era when we are saturated with… Continue reading Discovery
Where Paintings Go to Die
I knew the lighthouse would be the most difficult thing to paint. I usually take only palette knives when I do plein air, and my hand has been shaking for the last few months because of my Ménière’s. Still, the beach and dune and lighthouse in Southhaven Michigan are almost obligatory subjects, and I knew,… Continue reading Where Paintings Go to Die
I’ve recently started a painting mentorship with the aim of finding and clarifying my voice and improving my technique. The first few weeks have focused on killing my inner critic (for the moment) and painting with “reckless abandon.” They also came with a recommendation to temporary stop selling work (aside from a fair in September)… Continue reading Re-creation
Where the Taconics Meet the Greens
12 x 12, oil on canvas I see this particular view every time we come back from and the Equinox that I have to go back to again and again because I can’t get them out of my head and they never the same two days in a row. This is another one of those… Continue reading Where the Taconics Meet the Greens
Don’t Think, Just do
The assignment was to put the intellect on hold for a whopping 10 minutes and just paint from the heart. Disconnect the critical and turbocharge the emotional. I’ve done it several times tonight, and even been happy with the results once or even twice. But as soon as that timer goes off, as soon as… Continue reading Don’t Think, Just do