Someone long ago had painted “ONLY DEAD FISH GO WITH THE FLOW” on a sidewalk at the University of Michigan. I don’t know if it was something I walked over once or everyday while I was there, but it was forever etched into my memory.

Struggle against the flow. Go with the flow. Fight. Surrender. I don’t have the answers. Some days it’s one. Some days the other. 

Making art is a struggle. Sometime you find that flow and go with it. The painting comes easy. Some days not.

But I understand the game. “Don’t fall in love with the background!” The “ugly teenager” phase. It’s temporary! The “click” when it starts to come together. And  I know the materials. I feel competent that I can make them do my bidding. No big surprises. And then I started painting with encaustics, and the unknown is as vast as an ocean. I am a beginner here. Any sense of control that I may feel is false. With heat the wax becomes fluid and unpredictable. The lines move. Too much heat and you melt through to the wood panel underneath all those layers. You blow a hole into the painting. And you have to remember what you learned in printmaking – “you can’t go back, you just have to roll with it”. Go with the flow. damn.

I really struggle when I work on an abstract piece. I need the painting to “be” something. I like a narrative. Even if no one else sees it. I started this painting 4 months ago. People who saw it said it was great, but I knew it wasn’t finished. And I was stuck. Didn’t know where to take it next. So I would walk by and doodle on it out of frustration. Carve into it, or draw more lines on it as I explained encaustic painting to visitors. It sat on the workbench and I would glare at it. And then a couple weeks ago I started working on it again, found the story and was able to finish it. finally!

IMG_9499

Ophelia” 18″x18″

Of course I have started another encaustic painting. Another struggle. I am letting it sit. Giving it the stink-eye as I pass. In the meantime I’ve been making encaustic monotypes. A printmaking technique that allow me to make quick and easy prints with wax on paper. I had been using thick printmaking paper, but picked up some rice paper after attending the last Sierra Wax Artist meeting and seeing a monotype demo by Barbara Nilsson.  I must say I am really loving the results I get with this thinner paper! These are all 6″x9″ encaustic and graphite.

monotype001

Photo Aug 11, 1 04 27 PM

Photo Aug 11, 1 41 39 PM

Photo Aug 11, 2 13 57 PM

monotype003

{ 0 comments }

Wow. The Big Names, Small Art event at the Crocker Art Museum last Thursday night was a blast! Saw a bunch of friends, was out-bid on all the pieces I tried to win, and met people who were actively trying to win my piece! It sold for $185. sweet. But the best part of the night? Going inside the museum and seeing this:

silentauction

 Yep. A really bad cellphone pic of my print hanging on the museum gallery wall!

TriptychandMe

Pretty freaking awesome! oh and even thought the auction isn’t until June 6th, you can bid online here!

And my encaustic painting “Holy Wound Five” went to it’s new home.

HolyWoundFive

 

Friday was a day of rest (read: headache) and then Saturday we got the keys to our new house! Greeting from the pool. :)

Photo May 24, 10 32 35 AM

And believe me, that pool is mighty nice after a day of moving garage stuff in the 95 degree heat!

 

 

{ 1 comment }

Mayday Mayday Mayday

May 19, 2014

crap. We still have 2 more weeks of May. Each month I hope our stress levels are gonna drop back down to “normal”. It hasn’t happened yet. My fear is that this is the new normal; a crisis a day. And that would suck. My adrenal glands need a freaking break here! Kyle sprained his […]

2 comments Read the full article →

And *POOF* we bought a house!

May 1, 2014

If *POOF* equals 2 months of stress, trauma, and great uncertainty. But yes, after the absolute hell we have gone through, we actually “recorded” yesterday. The house is ours. At the end of the month we will move from Cardinal to Soaring Hawk. Bigger, better, bird – bigger, better house. Our current house (which is […]

0 comments Read the full article →

Ok April, let’s do this thing!

April 11, 2014

As long as “this thing” continues to be good news  like I received in today’s mail. I just found out that one of my prints was selected for the Crocker Museum’s annual Art Auction! I will have a piece of art hanging in a museum. That is all kinds of kick ass! And I needed […]

0 comments Read the full article →

You gotta keep ‘em separated

January 30, 2014

or not so much… My printmaking class started this week so I’ve been thinking about what images I want to create. Since I am in the “advance” class – 40B, I can pretty much do what I want. And you must have picked up by now that that kind of artistic freedom can be kinda […]

0 comments Read the full article →