Satin Savageness

"Satin Savageness" is simply sultry seen from the side

Day 233: Satin Savageness

Since I’m still slaving away at the sculpture series, I sat down and steered myself towards a sassy small-style painting session. This 5×7″ canvas features another vintage dictionary page that showed me how sometimes letters can be sexy, as illustrated by this selection with “satin savageness” in the header. This page includes several sultry symbols such as: saucy, sausage, satisfy, Saturday, saunter, and sauterne…it kind of writes itself, trashy romance-novel style. 😉 Here’s hoping your Saturday is filled with a little bit of saucy satin action! 

Use "Satin Savageness" as a date planning guide! Select some snippets and get started!

Read Rebel

I totally can't roll my R's. It's frustrating.

Day 232: Read Rebel

I’ve been bitten by the typography bug. Up next in this simple letter/page series of sans-serif sillies is the letter R on a dictionary page “titled” Read Rebel, which I find intriguing. It makes me think of a person who is both learn-ed and who bites his/her thumb at authority. Rock on!

It also includes other important r words such as realm, reality, reasonable, reagent, ream and reaper. I still don’t know what it is I like about these except that they look simple on the surface, but then there are curious word arrangements behind on closer inspection. *Shrug* Happy weekend, everyone!

"Read Rebel", a painting with paper on 5x7" mini canvas.

Hey Nonny Nonny

"Nominally North", painting on 5x7" canvas

Day 231: Nominally North

I’m still working away on the sculpture pieces, sewing some quilted fabric, picking up LEDs at RadioShack, moving my plaster stuff around gingerly with fear it will suddenly shatter. I find that when I’m working on long-term pieces, I prefer to stick with small scale daily art to minimize the frustration factor. Today I found that the overflowing inspiration well runneth dry, so I began again with a vintage dictionary page and mini canvas, and no images seemed to jump out at me. My sculpture pieces are all in white, so then I decided to just stick with a plain, lower-case N in the negative space and a white glaze surrounding it. Simple, yes. But I like it after all. 🙂

The text at the top of the dictionary page reads "nominally north".

Little Big Blue

I'd love to show these to you side by side on the wall, but that would require locating some nails...

Day 230: Little Big Blue, a diptych

So I asked a good friend of mine to give my body of work her honest “Simon de Pury” opinion the other day, and she remarked that much of my art is “safe”. This was really important for me to hear because it got me thinking. I’ve always made my art with the intention of adding beauty to the world. I love color, I love exploring the connection between man-made forms and those of nature in my paintings, and I love making work that makes people smile. I’ve also been listening to a lot of Alan Watts, a philosopher, lately, and it’s brought me to the realization that if I make only beautiful things, I risk making them one-dimensional. Everything in the world is informed by its opposite, and including a bit of “ugliness” might give my work more depth, might make it more evocative.

The "little" blue

So I asked myself “if you weren’t worried about making work that is beautiful, or salable, what might you make?” and it’s led me so far to some exciting ideas that are pretty different than what I normally do, including some sculptural explorations which are taking some time since I’m having to learn as I go.

"Big" blue

Today’s art, two paintings I’ve been working on for a few days, are much simpler than anything I’ve done before, but I really like them. I created these by slathering a thick layer of gesso on to some 24” square canvases, laying some yarn into them, pressing the yarn down into the gesso with paper (which I saved and plan to use for complimentary pieces), and later dropping some slate blue liquid watercolor into the grooves left by the yarn and blowing it through the dampened grooves. The image of the blue string in the white field makes me think of DNA, and the simple elegance of nature. Here are some detail shots, hopefully this will help you see the texture.

Yeah, can I get the picture menu?

Side view of today's trio of woodblocks. Love that wood grain!

Day 229: Blue Branch

Today’s one of the 4 or 5 days I’ve had in my life where I’m not feeling terribly verbose.  Hence, enjoy today’s blog post in pictures.

So I’ve been working on these things for the past few days…

…and these things…

…and since I’m not sure if I want to add anything more to the above yet, I decided to do a trio of woodblocks with similar methods today as kind of a scale study…

"Blue Branch", today's art, a trio of woodblocks about 4" square each, with watercolor, charcoal, paint and pastel.

…and that made me think about how sometimes I really like the discard pile of materials I used during the artmaking better than the end result itself.

Gotta go, it’s time to get back to more of this! (I know, the suspense is killing you. Sorry dude. Hang tight. More to come. :))

Sage Salamander

"Sage Salamander", a collage on 5x7" mini canvas.

Day 228: Sage Salamander

I’ve always found it really interesting how someone’s face can take on animal features. For example, I feel that the head coach of the San Jose Sharks looks very much like an adorable hedgehog.

Don't you want to ruffle his hair?

"Move your ass, Thornton!"

Today’s mini painting uses a dictionary page entitled “Sage Salamander”. I kind of feel like this chick has an “all-knowing” look- as if to say “I totally knew plaid would still be in 40 years from the time this pattern was printed”. Yet at the same time she’s seducing me with her eyes, but in a terrestrial amphibian sort of way, no?

 I’m tittering with delight over your gigglicious comments from yesterday! Couldn’t think of anything for that comment challenge? How about putting together an amusing alliteration using words from this dictionary page? As I hinted, I’m in a giving mood, so some free art is in the works for the funniest participants! 🙂

Vegetal Veneer

"Vegetal Veneer", collage on 5x7" canvas

Day 227: Vegetal Veneer

As the adventures in plaster wrap continue, I decided to do another mini painting with vintage paper and sewing pattern illustration. This page reads “vegetal veneer”, which amused me so much, I hunted through my bag of patterns until I found a drawing that seemed to match the spirit of that word mashup, et voila!

I know a true 'vegetable' wouldn't be smiling, but you get the point.

I’d like to invite you to create your own caption for this blank-faced-smiling-Susie in the comments. A free piece of mini artwork may be in it for you if you can come up with a good one. Here, I’ll start- “Whoopsie! Brain almost slipped out of my ear again!”

“This is the dawning of the age of equality…”

"Equate Ergo", a mixed media mini painting on 5x7" canvas

Day 226: Equate Ergo

This mixed media mini painting is a collage of a dictionary page and vintage sewing pattern illustration. When I found this one in a local Mormon thrift store, I found it be a very charming, romantic gaze between interracial lesbians and decided to hold on to it until the Prop 8 ridiculousness got resolved. Since it’s anticipated that gays will again be allowed to marry on August 18th (hopefully sooner), I thought it was time to pull it out of the closet. 😉

"You know I love it when you wear those overalls."

I placed the cutout illustration on a page reading “equate ergo” at the top. This expresses my opinion that gays and lesbians should have equal rights, ergo- let’s close the chapter on this era of bigotry and get those wedding bells chiming and disco balls spinning! Not that I’m implying every gay marriage celebration will include a disco ball. But this seventies image with crazy outfits is making me think of hilarious themed weddings. I can imagine the invites now… “swing by a local thrift store and get yourself some groovy duds… meet us on the steps of City Hall at 5 pm, August 18th with an afro and angel flights! Be there or be square!” (P.S. If anyone wants to borrow that idea, please feel free! And send me a picture!)

This would make a sweet wedding gift... 😉

And what do you see on this card?

"Limen", a 5x7" mixed media painting on canvas

Day 225: Limen

I’ve got some sculptural projects brewing, but as they’re going to take a few days or so (seeing as how I don’t know much about sculpture techniques and will be learning as I go), I decided to do another mini today with an odd word I found in my vintage dictionary- “limen”. And it’s not the jazzy word for citrus you’re thinking, either.

It's a real word. Promise.

I know it’s hard to read, but it says: “limen- in experimental psychology, the threshold of an appreciable stimulus.” I used thread and drips of watercolor in a thick layer of medium. After it was mostly dry, I laid a piece of an old curtain on it and painted it down with some more medium. I like how it looks like an ink blot in the rain during an acid trip. (I’ve never done acid, but I hear it has something to do with bright colors.)

Now it's making me think of alien tears. Time to bust out 'The Fifth Element'!

Disoriented

Day 224: Disoriented

Today I decided to try to capture the feeling of disorientation with some blurred images from my studio. My table and my easel served nicely, as they’re drenched in layers of paint and give me that tilt-a-whirl-hurl feeling when I look at them in these compositions. It’s been one of those looooong days, so I hope you’ll forgive me for the brief post. Nighty night!