Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Yesterday I was so sick that I needed to leave the office. It was anxiety-making because there is much to do this week and I can't afford to be ill. This morning I woke feeling much better.
Here is what my office currently looks like. Piles of paintings. Bodie, the westie, is a little annoyed because that black chair is his chair. My space has become a temporary storage of paintings for a show at Vermillion, featuring three of my series, that has me pretty stoked. There are also larger paintings on the walls and in my assistant's office. I'll be hanging the work on Sunday and details will be coming soon.
Sunday, November 27, 2011
I've slowly begun cleaning and sorting through various closets and shelves so come February, I'm not crazed. I found my xmas ornaments that I haven't seen in seven years. There were some old paintings on paper, my diplomas, a box of memories, a bag of little red vigil lights that used to be on my former Mentor's altar, which he gifted to me, and a big box of bears that I haven't seen in almost a decade. These are the two from that box I opted to keep.
Saturday, November 26, 2011
Friday, November 25, 2011
Thursday, November 24, 2011
This photo is part 1 of my Thanksgiving. Appetizers at a friend's home (the chef from the Hopvine, Michael Congdon and his partner Bryan). I left before the actual dinner because I was headed to other friend's for turkey. On the table, cheeses, 3 kinds of breads, olives, little oak cakes with slices of duck and homemade apple/cranberry topping...and three kinds of deviled eggs. Duck eggs with salmon mousse and poppy seeds. Chicken eggs, traditionally deviled. And quail eggs with truffle, sour cream and topped with caviar. And what was yet on the table was a delicious rabbit mousse topped with apples.
Michael is a vegetarian and yet somehow, intuitively concocts some pretty brilliant meat dishes.
For part 2 I headed to Roger K and David's to meet up with other good friends for more amazing food, including turkey. It was wonderful spending the time with my loving peeps.
Satiated, stomach and emotions…it was a very good day.
I hope today was rich for all of you.
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Monday, November 21, 2011
Here is some impromptu dancing on a Capitol Hill street corner...
...and here is a bragging proud aunt moment...
My niece, Sarah Charles, in addition to working with her own jazz quartet, also gigs with other musicians. She has been working with Enoch Smith Jr and is the featured vocalist on his brand new cd, released last week.
Marc Myers, who writes frequently on music, art and architecture for the Wall Street Journal also has a blog focused on jazz: www.jazzwax.com.
On Sunday he wrote a review of Smith's new cd.
From Mr. Myers' blog:
CD discoveries of the week:
If you miss Amy Winehouse, you'll find traces of her sound in Sarah Elizabeth Charles, the female vocalist on Enoch Smith Jr.'s Misfits (Music4MyPeople). Actually, Charles' voice is stronger, prettier and less cranky. And if Charles' all-in vocals aren't enough, wait until you hear pianist Smith, his eight originals and his arrangements throughout. There's a story-telling, gospel vibe here, but with enormous soul. Joining Smith and Charles are bassist Noah Jackson and drummer Sangmin Lee, who frame Smith perfectly with sensitivity and tenderness. Dig Wise Man, I Want You and I Won't Complain. This is new jazz at its best.
If interested, you can preview and purchase Misfits at CDBaby, found at this link: www.cdbaby.com/cd/enochsmithjr1
Sunday, November 20, 2011
Fifteen years ago, while in the throes of a painting fellowship, I came to the realization that everything we create is a self portrait. It is all auto-biographical. It doesn't matter if a conscious (or unconscious) choice is made to emotionally detach from your work, that choice as well...is telling.
I am excited about moving east and know it's perfect for me at this time. And yet, the huge anxiety in finding employment is overshadowing my joy of creating an adventure.
With all the changes and living in the midst of great unknown, I've been feeling loss, anxiety as well as a sense of renewal. Conflicting emotions. Normally I can ground myself in my art but even that, albeit temporarily, has changed. Instead of my warm blanket of messy oils and the comforting smell of linseed, I've been rediscovering paper, ink and water media.
In the last few days I've been working on intentionally allowing myself to just be lost and let it be alright. The way for me to do that...is to let myself be okay with confusion in the art. Navigating murkiness on paper will offer connection in other aspects of my life. It means implicitly trusting myself regardless of what I see in the rest of the world.
Saturday, November 19, 2011
Stepping out of an art opening held in Bartholomew vineyard's tasting room on Airport Way, I caught the light rail zooming past. My former studio mate was showing work and her husband, a chef, was cooking up tasty bits. It was truly wonderful to see them. While chatting I sampled some of the wine and even surprised myself by splurging on a $34 bottle of red. It's a treat because I needed something special while working art at home.
Sunday, November 13, 2011
Thursday night I dreamt that I found my lost box of drawing supplies. Friday morning I woke, sad when I realized it was a dream.
Saturday, I moved a small wicker basket that was on top of a small white box which I believed held music cd's from the studio. On the top of the box I saw the words "drawing box - for home" written in marker. Opening it I found my cherished little enamel watercolor tray...and my favorite watermedia brushes. Ink. Charcoal pencils. Boxes of Yarka compressed charcoal. And jars. And rags.
Now, while wearing a new pair of warm, red wool socks that the pink bunny surprised me with, I'm going to paint. In addition, it's a cool, grey autumn day and hot chocolate will also be a nice accompaniment to working art.
One day I will be able to do this full time.
Friday, November 11, 2011
This week I brought a bunch of new work to my studio group. I still feel incredibly lost, inept and displaced but it doesn't mean I'm not somewhat pleased with what is coming out on paper. In addition to working many sketches for a new project where the direction is still a mystery...I've been working with watercolor and graphite. Here is a small sample of what I've been working.
Wednesday, November 09, 2011
Studio group tonight and I'm very much looking forward to it due to missing it last month because of staff retreats. I'm slowly working on drawings and watercolors and will be bringing some samples to the group this evening. I'm still feeling lost but am trying to work my way out of the forest.
It seems I've lost/misplace/accidentally thrown away a box. It's a box that contains my charcoal pencils, 3 or 4 boxes of Yarka charcoal, and my cherished watercolor palette - an old enamel butcher's tray that previously belonged to a queer artist and sold in an estate sale by his lover after the artist passed. There was lots of good juju in that tray.
For the life of me I can't figure out what happened to it. So I picked up another tray this week and still need to restock other supplies.
In the meanwhile, I attempt to work.
Sunday, November 06, 2011
Friday, November 04, 2011
Apparently it's freebie Friday!
As I returned from my walk to check out the venue where I'll be exhibiting paintings for a private event, I walked past a store front that turned into a hairshop for one day, offering free cuts.
In desperate need of a haircut I walked in. There was a long line, but the stylist gave me her card, entitling me to a complimentary cut at her shop downtown. Excited, I headed home and checked my mailbox which contained a cd, a brand new release from an amazing jazz group as well as an envelope from one of my favorite Italian restaurants containing a coupon for a free dinner.
All this before 2 pm!
Thursday, November 03, 2011
This time with my art...is a time of reflection and directing the work to honing skills. It's not about doing work that I'm going to have on a wall every month. It's not about doing completed pieces. It's more private. That isn't to say I won't share periodically...but it feels similar to when I used to take piano lessons and spent specific time just practicing scales.
With that, has come some anxiety. My internal questions..."what if people forget I'm a painter?", "what if I forget how to paint?", "is it going to be out of sight, out of mind?"
I have to consciously push those toxic voices out of my head but it is a daily chore.
Yesterday's horoscope was a great reminder for me to relax in my drawing exercises.
Social climbers are people who are focused on gaining higher status in whatever circle of people they regard as cool, even to the point of engaging in fawning or ingratiating behavior. Soul climbers, on the other hand, are those who foster the power of their imagination, keep deepening their connection with life's intriguing enigmas, and explore the intersection of self-interest and generosity toward others. According to my reading of the astrological omens, you could go far in either of those directions during the coming weeks, Capricorn -- but not both. Which will you choose?
Click here for yours...
I've never wanted to be a social climber and don't trust that arena. It's filled with artifice. An act is never good or bad. What needs to be questioned is the intention behind the act. Why are we really doing "x"? There were times, my reason for putting my paintings out there had some of that need to attempt to seek popularity - a ridiculous attempt to be part of the cool kids. So this time of deeper reflection with my work is one to be cherished...and somehow trust that it will all be okay.
My biggest desire has always been to be known for my work, not for who I know or hang with. Allow the integrity and strength in the work speak for itself.
I need to remind myself that this more private art time is a gift to be cherished.
(These lanterns were in the Volunteer Park Conservatory on Halloween night.)
Wednesday, November 02, 2011
Tuesday, November 01, 2011
A few more from last night's exploration.
The Volunteer Park Conservatory, for the first time, created a spooky open house. I love the building, spending much time in it photographing plants. It was pretty great walking through the rooms in the approaching night, seeing pumpkins and lanterns