A total lack of resolve – and a happy new year

Happy New Year to one and all; may 2009 be kind to you and yours.

I don’t make resolutions as the new year begins, but I do think about my goals for the coming year. Here is what I posted a while back. “Some of us in the NZ Art Guild have been looking back at our art goals for 2008, and thinking ahead to 2009:

1. A body of paintings that hangs together around a theme or process (don’t know what yet).

2. A small body of textile work to exhibit as a whole.

3. Some charity work so I can give back.

4. To market myself more systematically.”

I’ve also been thinking about what I want in a personal sense, and have set myself a couple of goals to work on in 2009 – but they’re going in my journal and nowhere else! 

Advertisements

Running kinda late – GPP challenge

Back in November Michelle’s challenge at the GPP Street Team blog was to explore the properties of gesso, and have a play at making some cool backgrounds. So, it’s almost 2009, and I finally got to it. Running kinda late, but it was fun anyway – and I learnt some new stuff along the way.

I used some pre-cut watercolour postcards, fluid acrylics, Making Memories foam stamps and Golden gesso. I stamped with gesso then painted over the top, painted them stamped on top with gesso, dribbled ink, rubbed with metallic crayons … and so on. Here’s just one of the backgrounds I now have ready for when I went to send a postcard to say hi to a friend.  

gpp1-001

Art eyes

Art eyes. Do you know them? They’re the slight red-rimmed, tired looking ones that have read too many art books, stared at too many lines, spent too long poring over paints and crayons and pens. But it was worth it! I have had a day and a half of ‘mucking round’ with no real purpose in mind, just fiddling about getting all inspired. Lovely fun. Now my poor old eyes need a rest…so it must be time to go cook dinner.

Mind you, if I wore my reading glasses, instead of letting them sit idle on my desk it might help. I am very short sighted, so my glasses go on before I even get out of bed. Having worn glasses for 36 years I am finding it hard to get into the habit of taking them off in favour of my reading ones. But it is becoming crucial. Sometimes I find myself looking under my glasses to do close work, or moving text further away from me. Perhaps tomorrow I will remember to use them. Or perhaps not 😉

tired-eyes1

It’s the 25th of December, so…

Whatever you believe, and however you choose to celebrate, I hope you have a lovely peaceful day. With no children in the house it is hard to get too carried away, but we’ll be phoning family later on to see how their day is going. We’re just pottering round the house and then having a roast chicken for dinner. We’ll swap presents late afternoon and that’s about it really. Because it is a week day, Tony is on ambulance duty as normal, so let’s hope it is uneventful…

Merry Christmas

 

Quick family interlude

 

tony-0021We interrupt this blog to bring you – family photos. Tony recently went to a medieval themed dinner for St John’s and received an award for 9 years of service. He hired a Friar Tuck costume and had a good evening with his fellow volunteers. And our grandson Rory attended his first Playcentre Christmas party, and had a lovely time playing with his friends.13-dec-08-sany0145-3

Work in progress – rose

It’s not often I do anything that involves lots of layers of glazing, but I thought it was time to do something different, something a little slower. Have you read about slow food, slow cloth, slow whatever? It’s all about taking your time, savouring the process, using your process like meditation. That’s what this painting is like for me; a slow, meditative process where I put some glazed colour on, look and think, put some more on, look and think…

I decided to paint a close-up of a rose because it gives me quite distinct areas of tone and colour, and because the definite form means I hopefully won’t drift off into abstract land on this one. I found a free photo of a rose on the net and printed it out.  I covered the back in pastel, taped it to my canvas and then used a sharp pencil to transfer the main lines onto my canvas.

I have done quite a few layers so far and, at this stage, it looks very crude and altogether too ‘obvious’ for my liking. But as I go through the layers I will soften both the edges and the colors. Hopefully I’ll arrive at something I can enjoy. We’ll see!

001

Looking forward to 2009

Some of us in the NZ Art Guild have been looking back at our art goals for 2008, and thinking ahead to 2009. I did reasonably well on my ’08 goals; some are ongoing and well enough entrenched as to be habits now. Others turned out to be “not such good ideas” and have been left behind. So what have I decided on as my goals for 2009. The short version is:

1. A body of paintings that hangs together around a theme or process (don’t know what yet).

2. A small body of textile work to exhibit as a whole.

3. Some charity work so I can give back.

4. To market myself more systematically.

Here’s the expanded version – with the where’s and whys:

1. A body of paintings that hangs together around a theme or process (don’t know what yet). This is the big one for the year. As it says, I don’t know yet what it is that will bring cohesion, but I do know that cohesion is what I need form my work this year. A body of work that I can hang in one place, and one time, and have it say “one artist did this and it works”. How hard can it be!

2. A small body of textile work to exhibit as a whole. I am planning a series of experimental work with TLC tutor and artist Trisha Findlay. We’ve yet to work out the details but essentially we’re talking about a monthly challenge with a view to exhibiting the work at the end of the process. And speaking of process, the challenge is likely to be around process, not size, or subject etc.

3. Some charity work so I can give back. This is about donating the occasional work to charity auctions etc. Not too much or too often, but enough to know I am giving back. Why not too much or too often? Think about this – when do you think was the last time your accountant or mechanic was asked to donate his time and materials to a charity auction? Yet artists are not big earners to start with…

4. To market myself more systematically. I do some marketing but it is a bit haphazard. I need to think it through more, be more systematic; less scatter-gun, more bulls eye!

Have you been thinking about what you did in 2008? Do you have any goals in mind for 2009? I’d love to hear your thoughts on either, or both.

Another Mt Egmont painting sold

It seems that Mt Egmont / Taranaki is very popular at the moment, which is fine with me as I enjoy painting it. This one has been sold locally; the new owner tells me it is propped up in their bedroom at the moment so she can sit in bed and look at it in the mornings. What lovely feedback! It’s done with water soluble oils on board and was approx 12×14″. It’s a photo I took with my old camera, so the colours are not accurate, but at least I do have some record of it. 

Mt Egmont in June

Mt Egmont in June