Have you heard of Around the World Blog Hop? I hadn't until artist Sunny Avocado invited me to participate by answering four questions about my work. I love Sunny's art, especially her self-portrait and gooey peanut butter and jelly sandwiches paintings.
1. What am I working on?
No artwork these days. We are building a new home and my time is spent on the millions of decisions necessary. It took a whole day to verify window sill heights in the house and garage. Last night, instead of sleeping, I spent several hours in the middle of the night weighing the pros and cons of white paint colors for our trim, inside and out. It is as if I am creating this huge (expensive) painting. My color choices must be correct but all I have now is little color chips. I look forward to the sheetrock stage (probably around Christmas) so I can see the rooms and how they relate to one another and the available natural light.
2. How does my work differ from others of its genre? I change my genre every decade or so. It isn't some grand plan, I think I just get bored when I start to feel really comfortable with a medium.
In my twenties I was a fashion illustrator working in pen and ink, then a twenty year sabbatical to raise children. When I returned to art in my 50's, I created colored pencil still life drawings. The pastel landscape was the genre of my 60's. Now, in my 70's I am experimenting with oil paint, landscapes and still life. So, I don't really have an answer to the question. When I come across beautiful work of others, rather than compare my work to theirs and how it might be the same or different, I am more interested in their handling of the medium. When I get back to painting, I will probably continue abstracting my subject and letting go of detail.
3. Why do I create what I do?
I guess I've already answered this question in terms of subject and medium so perhaps another question might be Why do I paint? I have asked myself this question many times. I guess the bottom line is that I need a creative outlet and for the past 25 years that has been art. I paint to fill gallery commitments. Each time I try a new medium, it has been helpful to me to enter competitions to get feedback from Jurors and Judges. But, as I focus on our building project in the coming year(s) I suspect the reason I create art will change. When I have time to paint, it might be more exploratory - to satisfy my curiosity. Oil bar and encaustic look interesting!
4. How does my creating process work?
A clean studio a must, I can't work amid chaos. Good light, something I'm still experimenting with. I like the routine of painting weekday mornings. I usually have only one or two paintings in progress at a time, otherwise I feel like my attention is spread too thin. I used to work exclusively from reference photos but painting from life or memory gives me a fresher look. And, knowing when to quit on a painting is a big challenge for me as it may be for other artists.
And finally, here are the three very talented artists I have invited to blog next Monday, November 3.
1. Kay Dewar is my long time friend; we met through colored pencil. Kay is a kind and thoughtful person - we cheer each other on in life and art.
2. Marilyn Webberley is an oil painter I met through Women Painters of Washington. She is generous with her time and knowledge, even walking me through putting oil paint on my new Open Box M.