Thursday, August 19, 2010

almost finished....half way picture

Concept: Kyla's painting part II... "I love you bigger than the sky"
Reminder: this is not finished! more to be posted later....

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Nightmare

In my new sketch book: my first drawing. 8/18/2010
The Nightmare: Lost on the Way to Your Bedroom
I was inspired by Henry Fuseli's The Nightmare. I then decided to come up with my own nightmarish stallion that delivers bad dreams and a woeful nights sleep. The proportions are disfigured and decaying, a tribute to re-occuring nightmares of my own. Spewing forth from the neck is an egg, hatching the threads of disturbing thoughts.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

painting clouds

Illinois happens to be a wonderful place to study clouds. Thunder heads collect in stacks and crowd around each other for miles towards the heavens. Great cotton ball puffs, with such wondrous dimensions, shadows in the crevices of so many shades of blue and a curiousness of childlike fantasy that never escapes me.

I recently met a man who is at some grand level of chess master. He told me that to become an expert master at anything, one must log 10,000 hours of practicing this thing before a master level can be reached. Now considering all factors involved that night....beers on his part and exhaustion on mine, I thought about this idea for awhile and it followed me home, took up residence in my mind and has yet to move out. What I keep wondering is how many hours of art/drawing/painting/sketchy doodling/projects of creation/etc. have I logged throughout my life time? Will I ever reach an expert level of artistic talent? Does this same idea apply to talent? Maybe this is what Herb meant when he said after 30 years I would get there. The thing about this idea that captures me is that is makes me want to strive to reach this 10,000 hour mark of effort put into my art. I want to have 30 years of experience to look back on and say that I, Me! I did that. It is the process that I am always in love with. The feeling while creating that is ever so addictive. If it is the process that I love and not so much the result that I focus on, then I should not be detoured from myself ... I am what holds me back 90% of the time. It is a strange form of masochism that I put myself through, denying myself the pleasure of artistic productivity and the enjoyment of fulfilling my own creative needs. I wonder if this is another common affliction of the creative beings world wide. I feel I have been doing this with holding of happy creativeness from myself my whole life. It starts as procrastination... then slowly convincing me that I have a type of writer's block for any ideas on what to make, and then a sort of guilt is followed. Usually the guilt is something about what "needs" to be done versus my free time allowed to create is not as important. I seem to prioritize my way out of the studio and into boring adult tasks of mundane responsibility. Then there are things like convincing yourself you need a break from already extended break and the couch shows, movies, shows...they all compete for my attention and I gladly submit. Naps are a big problem for in I take to many for too long and feel too sleepy after waking up to really do anything. ALL of these reasons and I have not even mentioned the self doubt factor of "am I wasting my money on materials?" ..."will this ever sell?"..."am I even good? or original at all... who likes this, HONESTLY????"
Now I can't complain anymore. I just need to talk my self down from the ledge of artistic suicide, which is giving up. Even if I am terribly awful and talent has left me...I must keep trying. I feel that every medium of talent and every person in a creative pursuit has this moment of doubt. I am not alone here... supreme confidence seems ungraspable in this profession....right?

*Inspire me world, I dare you*

So in a diligent effort to learn more and stay with the art world I have been reading up on my favorite movement - Surrealism. The book "The Surrealists" written by Laura Thomson, an art history professor at the University of Sussex is what I am studying at the moment. It is a look at the specific works from well-known and not so well-know surrealist artists. A breakdown of each piece is given to explain surrealism as a whole. After reading "A Moveable Feast," "Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass," and then "A farewell to Arms" all with the last two months, I feel that I am perpetually stuck in the early nineteen hundreds. I have discovered time travel...
Now with Surrealism and I seeing art in that time. Of course I already covered some material from this time in college (Art History BA, after all). But since it is my favorite, I am rather enjoying covering old and new material. Sounds cliche I am sure, but I have to say that Dali is my favorite. I also love Miro and Ernst. And I feel their last names should be their first names instead...they fit better.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

not so into updates

Been a rather neglectful blogger... not there are many of you who would notice. Out of commission in June and some of July. Recovering has been a drawn out process that I am still dealing with. I have almost finished a painting that will be sent home to Oregon this month. It is about a message in the clouds (pics to be posted when ready).
Note to self: when bored online avoid shopping and blog instead. Saves money and clears head.

A new purchase I recently made for the betterment of my career ... 8 little brushes and 4 tubes of oil paint and varied sizes of canvas...the thin kind without wooden frames. Not sure how these canvases should affect the price of the piece of art or what it will say about the integrity/quality of my work. Anyone who knows better, please fill me in.

Now that I live in Bloomington Illinois I have been trying to involve myself in the local art scene. I have stumbled upon some small galleries that I find interesting and hopeful. I met a local artist, Herb Eaton...who has given me some advice that I really took to heart. Paraphrasing to the best of my memory...

* stay local, with your roots and community - they will help your career as an artist

* as a young artist everything is fresh, you are still thinking the way professors want/taught you to don't know any better. You have to live and experience for your art to grow.

*people need us (artists). The economy may be horrible and maybe nobody will buy your work, but they need to see it.

* Humans have been creating art since always... we have never evolved away from creation therefore it must be essential to our survival.

* After 30 years ... you will get there.

A note to the economy and those who would rather spend money on fleeting enjoyment a piece of art will stay with you and those who look upon it for as long as you want. Art hanging in your home is a gift for you and anyone who enters. It does not spoil, end or become just a memory.

And to say the least art will make its come back.... a little proof
A childhood friend recently bought my painting, Dreaming and I commend him for spending his hard earned cash on my efforts rather than spend it on the usual purchase that the average 23 year old male would make.

...UPS guy must be here...
And I was right. New books have arrived. Yes folks, I have traded in the remote for bound paper strewn with text. I have become my very own book club. It is going quite well I might add. Since the middle of July I became ravenous for books. Now, my whole life I have always loved to read, but it was not until this summer (a year after graduating from Oregon State University) that I realized I am free to read anything and not feel guilty that I was not studying for some class. Text books are a thing of my past now. I am not sure when I was in need of a year long break from books... though I read Jack London's The Call of the Wild last summer when I got my puppy (Lucia my husky). It seemed to be an appropriate choice and was much more interesting than any puppy training book I had bought.
I would like to have a list of every book I have ever read. It may be possible to recall most of them over time, but I am sure to forget some. Perhaps I should just start with what I have read recently and put whatever comes to mind on the list...May it be long and respectable.
I must call myself a book "snob" because I am biased. I know this. I prefer to read literature that falls into the "classics" category or buzz worthy newer novels that are probably going to be or are already movies. Except Twilight... and the average reader of that series that happens to be over 18 has told me that I am not missing anything.
I picked up the Modern Library's 100 Best Novels of the 20th Century list at my favorite book store, Powell's, which is located in the ever so lovely (and dearly missed) downtown Portland.
From this list I have read so far...
The Catcher in the Rye
A Clockwork Orange
A Farewell to Arms
The Call of the Wild
The Grapes of Wrath
Animal Farm
The Sun Also Rises

Not a lot considering there are a 100, but I am making my way through it. I might not read all the books due to a lack of interest in the novel itself but I may read another title by the authors from the list.
I love Hemingway and I have declared this to be my summer of Hemingway. I started with A Moveable Feast, (took a break to read Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland and Through the looking glass) and then read The Sun Also Rises, and A Farewell to Arms. I plan to read For Whom the Bell Tolls and Old Man and the Sea after a little break from Ernest to read Eat, Pray, Love. Before the movie comes out this Friday. 4 days... I should be fine.
My other reading choices for this year are -

Vonnegut: armageddon in retrospect, slaughterhouse-five (top 100)

Dickens: oliver twist, a christmas carol, a tale of two cities, great expectations and the personal history of david copperfield

C.S. Lewis: chronicles of narnia

Gregory Maguire: wicked, son of a witch, and a lion among men

Ken Kesey: one flew over the cuckoo's nest

William Golding: lord of the flies (top 100)

Aldous Huxley: brave new world (top 100)

Fitzgerald: the great gatsby (top 100)

Joseph Heller: catch-22 (top 100)
and all of those books should keep me busy for some time. Anyone want to join my little book club...?

New Loves after my near death experience... (more on that some other promises).
Peanut butter on graham crackers (use to hate peanut butter - texture issue).
Dark chocolate
Old country: Dottie West especially
Taken a mournful yet respected interest in my Native American heritage (I am a certified member of the Choctaw tribe. I even have and ID card).
Reading (which we already discussed).
Eggs... more or less.
A renewed love for my faith and those who help me to appreciate God in the everyday.

So this is what happens when you have months of backed-up blogging to get out. (this is the end note...I swear).
A special thanks to my sweet, loving mother...who has always been there for me and will always do so for the rest of time. I cannot describe my endless need for her compassion, intelligence and power. I pray that I never forget her lessons.
And to the most wonderful man in my life. You stand by me through it all and stay strong for me. Without you I would be so lost. You are my everything and I love you more than I can ever explain. I am forever grateful for fate, for love and for patience. We are so lucky.

Monday, May 24, 2010



in the absence of blogging...

migration to the midwest occurred. A charity painting made its way to Oregon and helped make a little money for medical research. A composition of clouds is waiting to be created. A friend purchased my dream girl. Met some new friends who want me to show them how to make charcoal comply with their creative visions. I planted a small garden. Summer has come out to play. I am craving the black soot embedded in my finger prints. I ordered candy online weeks ago, it still has not arrived ... my sweet tooth is going through withdrawals.

Words that have been giving me ideas ... thoughts I am toying with.

· covet

· stumble upon

· art as sport

· evolution of thought process and style

· deformity

· odd

· squeamish

· vanity

· conventional beauty vs. strangely captivating ugliness

· self destruction series

· legend

I am looking forward to warm summer nights, iced coffee, sun kissed skin, fireflies and a sketch book filled cover to cover by yours truly.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Outdoor Sculpting

I started a painting last week. I found a small pre-stretched canvas in one of my closets and I decided I would just paint in a background. I ended up painting more than just a background. Some imagery I had been throwing around finally could be used. I sketched one figure on the canvas the next day and then the second figure was giving me some trouble so I stared at my painting for awhile, and then a little longer and then it was time to make dinner. I left my painting up in my studio and I have yet to return to it. All the while I keep thinking about it, up there all alone, unfinished. Only to be looked at by my cats. I think I have finally come to a conclusion about the final look of the piece. I just have to execute the following: add two more figures and decide the color scheme. Sounds simple... however I am one of those peculiar types that cannot make myself be creative at the drop of a hat. I have to be in the mood. And sadly the mood only seems to take hold of me once in a while. I seem to rely on other distractions to continue my laziness.
For example, yesterday I decided to spend my afternoon building my dog a snow fort to sleep in. After two hours of shoveling snow into a semi circle and packing it down to make sturdy walls and the gathering of many branches to construct a roof of sorts, I felt that I was finished. I had created a little place for my dog to be sheltered from wind and rain. I was freezing, tired and annoyed (at the difficulty level of making snow walls) and above all excited to see my husky crawl into her fortress and looking lovingly into my eyes. So I put my dog out to see what she thought and she immediately took the branches off the fort one by one, dragging them all over the yard. She then proceeded to trample my snow walls, bite at them and dig into them. What was most hurtful about this act was that she had watched me make this thing for her... for two hours. I must admit I half way expected her to destroy it. But I had convinced myself that she might like the shelter and understand its purpose and therefore not kill it. But being only 10 months old I guess my expectations of her were too high.
Going back to my laziness, most days I watch tv until about two hours from when my boyfriend comes home, then I rush about the house cleaning and I start dinner.
Some days dog walks are included. And that is my life at the moment.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

I am leaving on a jet plane

Soon I will be flying to California. It will be my two year anniversary march 1st. Went by fast.
While I am back home I am going to snag a few photos of my dad. I guess in the move I left him behind. I plan to make several "ode to my father" pieces. One portrait made from his stamp collection and then preserved in bees wax. Two drawings pen/pencil, not sure yet, but they will both include logging references. And if I can, I will make a fourth composition which is unknown to me at this time. When finished, one piece will go to my mom, another for my brother and then one for me. The fourth is still just an if at the moment. My dad died in a logging accident almost twenty years ago. With father's day around the corner I felt my family and I deserve something to remind us of him. My hope is that I can pull this off accurately. This will be an emotional process for me and I will strive to pull through and deliver my best. Time does not heal all wounds.

A small portion of my work

Lithography print

relief print - self portrait 09

Graphite sketches

stacked contortionists 09

untitled 09

Anorexic body type 09

Saturday, February 6, 2010

the morning after

Woke up after some much needed sleep and found myself wondering where my latest creative notions had gone to. I was bursting at the seams with images and compositions, projects and concepts. It seems that these ideas have escaped me for now.
I decided to start off my day with a good cup of tea and then a walk with my dog. Hoping fresh air and sunshine would help.
Returned from my walk and am back on the couch getting ready to watch a movie. Turns out I live with an enabler ... that combined with my natural attraction to all things relaxing, I fold. The only thing that has successfully made me loathe couch & Tv time is football. A bunch of whistles, time outs and something called off-sides usually produces a migraine and an immense state of boredom. I usually retreat to my studio while the game entertains my darling. With the super bowl on tomorrow I can hopefully get some work done. Go team me...

Friday, February 5, 2010

day 708

First Blog Entry.

708 days ago I became a different person. Now that the lungs residing within my chest are not my original set... to say the least, life is different.

For the past five years I have been attending college. I finished my degree post transplant. Now my days are filled with menial tasks ... my self-worth is composed of keeping a clean house and cooking. Skip a day of chores and the self esteem drops. Job opportunities are scarce, my lack of immune system kills my chances for any normal job with social interaction. Exposure to people = germs.
So how does one make money while staying at home? It seems that most options turn out to be a scam ... infamous pyramid schemes, surveys or the buy products in bulk and sell them back to other customers gig. None of these options appeal to me. I am not a settler. I hold out for things that I want in life. Therefore my money making endeavor must incorporate my interests.
My art work seems to be my most promising career path. The problem: ever hear of the phrase "starving artist" ... it's so true. Not that my work is undesirable, it is just few and far between. The starving part refers to this dilemma - spend my last few bucks on groceries or canvas. The materials are so very expensive. Why, a tube of cobalt blue oil paint could cost anywhere from $28- $64. That is one 37ml tube. Countless other materials are needed to make a successful composition that could one day grace the walls of an art gallery or even perhaps be invited into a stranger's home.
With not much in my pocket I am hoping to persevere in a bad economy. I strive to manifest my imagination into something tangible, something worthy of trading for money. Don't be confused, I am not a sellout who creates Kinkade garbage to make please a dull audience. I want my art to provoke an emotion, a thought process and genuine wonderment.


i am a wanderer amongst my own imagination. i want to show the world what is in my mind. uncensored curiosity. taboo. i am of body, mind and graphite. fascinated by the unusual but beautiful. i have a gluttonous appetite for the surrealist style. i believe in altering reality within art. learn from conventional thought but make your own rules. i draw the line.