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Thursday, March 31, 2005

Bumping Into Butterflys

I haven't been able to step outside without bumping into butterflys. The conditions are just right, with all the rain, and then all the flowers, there is a lot of butterfly food available. They are migrating through in vast numbers. They are called Painted Ladies and they are going north.

What tickled me most was that feeling, especially at first, of not knowing what is going on. Of something at work that is bigger. It was a return for awhile to wonder and the curiosity that springs out of that.

A friend mentioned that the hospice he works at as a volunteer uses the butterfly as their symbol because of the associations with transformation.

I was then reminded of a story about how it is detrimental to a butterfly to attempt to assist one while it is emerging from it's cocoon. It is in the struggle to emerge that causes the butterfly to build strength in its wings. Without the struggle the wings will not be strong enough to allow the butterfly to fly.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Is There A Need For Art?

This is a quote attributed to Christopher Knight, as a part of the Art Journalism Panel: "What I'm saying is art isn't for everyone, it's for anyone and there's a difference. It's perfectly possible to live a long happy productive life without ever seeing a painting. "

I imagine he was referring to a specific idea of what art is and not all art.

Whether we are aware of it or not, art is everywhere. Art is required, in some form or fashion, on some level, in every object made, from soup bowl to automobile. It seems to me then that the question is, do we want to be aware of art, or leave it to the unconscious.

I think of art as food. It is perfectly possible to live a life without ever visiting a gourmet restaurant, but how long can one go without something to digest?

Friday, March 25, 2005

Watercolor Past and Present

I love watercolor and if it isn't the wettest year on record than it's almost the wettest year, so it seemed entirely appropriate to visit the Huntington Library to see "An Eye For Beauty, Collectors and the British Watercolor" And then, a few blocks away, in Pasadena, "Liquid Los Angeles, Currents of Contemporary Watercolor Painting." In the first there is a range of work with watercolor often used as a drawing tool, using a very fine brush as a pen. Having worked quite a bit with watercolor outdoors on site I was appreciative of the compositions. Many of these artists were traveling to some remote areas to capture images of nature. The second show demonstrates the versatility of watercolor, showing some very free uses of watercolor, for example Shane Guffogg's flooding of the paper, really saturating it with deep color, as well as the photorealistic work of Cindy Craig and Judie Bamber's masterfully rendered and also fragile paintings. Alltogether a refreshing counterpoint to the David Hockney show at LA Louvre.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Conversations With Artists: SPARC Gallery

This past weekend the Venice Art Forum held "Conversations With Artists" at the SPARC Gallery in Venice. "Conversations" is in conjunction with the current Venice Art Forum Group Show. There were eleven artists and a room full of guests. Among the guests were those that are friends and families of the artists as well as random folks who just happened to stop by. Each artist spoke for a few minutes about their work, asked...what the work is about, why it is created, how it is created, what it means. The answers were as intriguing, varied and surprising as were the artists. Some that I remember are: "I don't know why I paint." "I am painting my breath." "The painting tells me what to paint."

The exhibit will be up through March 26th.

Friday, March 04, 2005

My Readers and I

My readers are art lovers and members of the art community, including collectors, designers, and other artists. I also have readers who are writers, other bloggers, friends – including Facebook, Myspace, and Twitter users - and anyone who has an interest in my life and work. I find my readers to be awake and aware, educated, intelligent and endlessly fascinating. Although I have readers from across the globe, most live in the United States and many reside in the greater Los Angeles area. Their interests in addition to art might include gardening, nature, travel, and personal growth.

My blog is a way for me to introduce my work and myself to the art community and to connect with collectors, curators, and artists, to generate interest in my work, to educate about painting: how and why my work is made and what it feels like to make it.

Since there is a significant amount of time passing between shows I’d like my blog to be a means of keeping in touch with and staying in the mind of collectors and the art community.

I’d like my blog to help my mail list to grow.

I’d like to use my blog as a means of documenting my art process, as a way of deepening my focus and for entertainment.

I’d like my blog to be fun for me and for my readers.

I’d like my blog to be a way of getting feedback.

I’d love to make money with my blog – if I can find a way to do that without disrupting my primary goals.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

About Me

At Fat Over Lean* life imitates art, which suits me well since I have an endless fascination with both. I can’t help being enchanted about the world when there’s so much beauty to see and mystery to experience.

Here you can find surprising tips to save you time in the studio, such as why I never have to clean my brushes. You can read about landscape painting adventures; I once rented a helicopter to drop me in a ravine to capture the perfect mountainside. You are invited to have a sneak peak as I paint in oil and watercolor what I consider the absolute essentials of landscape painting: the indescribable qualities of light and mood.

As an artist, I’ve been known to indulge in solitude but my inner extrovert needs to be fed often and the door is open for discussion on any number of topics. Feel free to post a comment; everyone is free to express an opinion – as long as it is respectful to others. Or, if you prefer, email me.


*Fat Over Lean is the original title of this blog. It refers to a painting term reminding artists to paint the oilier more flexible layers of paint over the stiffer, faster drying bottom layers, to prevent cracking.