Saturday, February 27, 2010


These little guys are about 3' x4'. As shown in the tiny sketch above, they'll be used for a mobile to add three dimensionality and movement to a usually static medium. Reminder: must get to hardware store for little hooks and chains, and perhaps a giant fishing weight, or shiny bauble to hang off the end.

Progress: No.23

In conversation with another student a few days ago, the term "painting academically" got mentioned, which kind of threw me off guard. She looked forward to graduation so she could paint as she liked. We'd been talking about the teaching differences among professors. A bunch of the teachers at school teach how they paint, as though it were the only right way. It disturbed me that she felt she had to "paint academically" to appease her independent study professor. It has been important to me to develop my "voice" as a painter while still in school, while I still have access to these minds.

I work with Michael Phillips for my independent study. No one could ever say that he teaches you to paint like he does. I've been working with him for the last year and half, and if you compare our styles, they're worlds apart. As a teacher he presses you to find a voice, a style that is personal to you. It is a shame that some of my fellow independent study students paint differently for fear of condemnation from their professors.

No. 15 in the Studio Art Club Show

I've got a piece up in the Studio Art Club Show. It's been a few weeks, but I've been busy and it would seem that I've never passed my painting when it's been lit properly. I saw the show hung for the first time walking to my studio one night. There were two spotlights over my painting and one was burnt out. Now that the CATO center is open, maintenance in the old building seems a little lax. However, I've got work up in where people can see it and Young Contemporaries fast approaching.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Progress: No. 19 and No. 20

Yesterday someone asked me why I work on wood. Well this person literally asked, "What's the deal with the paint on the board?" Ignoring my compulsion to make that question grammatically correct, I surmised what he was asking. I really enjoy the tangible quality of this hard surface. I love the texture and the color. Canvas when pulled across stretcher bars has flex to it, making it feel delicate. Also I purchase remnants from a local lumber store, where many of the small pieces I take would have been discarded anyway.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Artists I'm Looking At: James Turrell

James Turrell paints without traditional materials. His work is experiential and largely intangible, you cannot simply own a piece of his. He cuts out skylights in an exhibit space, allowing the sky itself to be his work. This makes his work vivacious and lively, as the work changes from moment to moment.

Professor Phillips, always the one to ask you to step out of your comfort zone, asked me to look up Turrell. The lesson I've derived here is to not allow myself to get too comfortable. There is always a tension and struggle in my painting process, the push to move forward. Turrell's work is a reminder a painting doesn't have to be limited to paint, that the strong point in my personal work is illusion vs. reality, a reminder to constantly push myself.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Outcome: No.17 (maybe)

This painting is quite large, 4ft x 4ft. It occupies the room in a very demanding way despite its subtle movements. In working recently I've been thinking about something John Hall, (one of my professors,) has recently said, that the process of making art is about "keeping track of your affections." This painting certainly does this. For months I've been working towards this mood, this palate, referencing more of my water colors than my previous oil paintings, trying to pinpoint my 'affections.'

Progress: No.18