Posts Tagged ‘art exhibitions’

The Showers of April … Have Brought Opportunities and Gifts in May!

May 5, 2016

Better news!

My last post talked about how the winter and early spring had been rough … with all the demolition in the studio and the storage areas.  Well, my tiresome kvetching … and the demolition process are done and the major reconstruction is almost over too!  When the space is all new and fresh, I’ll gleefully post those images.

Now, as April has wrapped up and the rains have brought us into May, I seem to have a lighter heart and and a less frenzied head.  Frankly, it didn’t hurt that I’ve been having some fun and some good luck as well. Many of you know that I really love to go sketch outside. Working with pencil, inks, watercolor, or gouache … I make lots of small pieces.  It always feel so good to get lost in that work.

Sometimes I will even whip out a panel or a larger sheet of paper and complete a whole painting on the spot.  Working that way reminds me of my Saturday forays into downtown Wichita (yes, I lived in Kansas for a few years) to draw the stately brownstones … or of the watercolor classes that I took back at Valdosta State.  I used the “plein-air” process for ten years as my primary painting strategy.  And while today I mostly use it to help prep for studio pieces, I still get a kick out of making a good small sketch.


View North, Spring, WEB

A recent quick watercolor sketch, 11×17

Well, I participated in a couple of Plein-Air Paint Outs and Quick Draw events in our region recently.  Painting while dodging the frequent rain showers … and meeting and talking with new colleagues was a joy.  The energy and camaraderie were really nice too.  Of course it didn’t feel bad for the old ego to hear a few nice comments and get a little recognition from one’s compatriots after a long day out making art!



Lynchburg Quick Draw

the artist Grey Dodson and I at a Quick Draw event


As I said above, I use these types of sketches, studies, and small plain air works as references for my studio pieces.  I am exhibiting some of those more involved studio works this coming month too.  The exhibit is happening at The Gray Gallery, a fairly new venue in Winchester, VA.1459915120

It is a two person exhibit, titled Structured Environments ( ) featuring Kung Chee Keong’s and my work.  I have about a dozen pieces in the show, all from my Shaped Landscape series.  The newest piece … finished just a few days ago … is actually a reworked triptych that I started over four years ago. In my eyes, it has always been only “almost” right since I stopped working on it.  I recently had a few ideas for how to improve the design and to make it a lot better.  I am pleased with the new version and I am really happy to see what others think.

I like Keong’s images a lot too, they have lots of movement and energy.  It is an interesting pairing.  These bodies of work will likely create a neat visual dialogue for the viewers; they do for me.  The exhibit is now open and the reception is on Friday, May 6th. The show will run through May 28th. If you are in the northern Shenandoah Valley this month, please do stop by the Gray Gallery and take a look.  The gallery is on Cameron Street in Winchester’s Old Town district … a beautiful and very walkable downtown.  Enjoy the art and, if you have time, maybe grab a bite to eat while you are there.  Make it a day!

works from The Gray Gallery Exhibit Structured Environments

“Autumnal Abundance”, one of my pieces (left), a work by Kung Chee Keong (right) from The Gray Gallery exhibition                               Structured Environments

As you see, a few weeks have gone by and life turned another corner. This corner, this turn, has lots of spring showers, thunderstorms, and even downpours to dodge … or to dance in. Whichever approach to dealing with the rain, it is a hopeful season. More later!




Exhibition of Sketches open, Reception today!

May 2, 2014

Sometimes little things are really quite important. Certainly the smallest thing can be extremely satisfying.

I have a new show opening today in Charlottesville, Virginia at Angelo (on the downtown pedestrian mall). It is a wonderful small venue. The show itself is also small, just 14 pieces. All the work is quite small too!

After my big shows of really BIG drawings earlier this winter, it is really a nice treat to put up these smaller, more intimately scaled pieces.


And these works are interesting and exciting to me precisely because they are more personal, intimate, and quick in terms of the art making. All of them are landscape sketches, most started and finished in one session … with the simplest of materials. There are a few that are almost panoramic in vision despite their very small scale.  A few are really close-ups of landscape details. Most of them though are fairly typical landscape images … at least they are typical to my eye.

The best ones are done very quickly and quite simply.  A few have a hint of Demuth or Marin (not so much Homer or Girtin this time) … and just maybe the quickness (if not the sublime quality) of a Turner watercolor.  The less successful ones may help me create better larger works but, of course, I don’t share those. They are now “working” sketches. You would have to come to my studio or one of my classes to see those.

The ones at Angelo for the next two months are, I think … pretty good.

If you are near Charlottesville sometime between May 1st and June 30th, please take a look and tell me if you agree.

(PS It would be wonderful to see you at the opening too … sometime between 5:00 and 7:30.)


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Two shows Delivered … resetting the studio for work!

February 3, 2014

Installion, of a large drawing

Installion of a large drawing

Excited and exhausted; to say the very least.

During January I installed two large exhibitions in two weeks. The installations went well. I was really quite happy with getting to see the works up on the walls together!

One exhibit had an opening reception that was very well attended, I got lots of questions and discussion, and folks seemed to have a splendid time. So I walked away with good feelings … relieved, happy and even a little euphoric.


view of part of the exhibition at Mary Baldwin College

Answering some questions at the reception

Answering some questions at the reception

To be honest though, when that kind of scheduling happens, my studio and my life tend to get pretty … no … really messy.

As the two shows loomed on the horizon, I began to focus more and more on the logistics of finishing, prepping and packaging for transport. At the same time I was continuing to make the last few works for each show. This left me a bit crazed and frenzied at times. I was switching back and forth between production mode and thinking about logistics. I wasn’t putting supplies and equipment back in place at the end of each session.  The studio got way out of hand!

Normally, once a show is up, I start to wind down.

Even the prep table and storage areas became really messy

Even the prep table and storage areas became really messy

When some of the exultation and weariness begins to abate, it is usually time for that reflection to begin … to take stock of where my work is/is going, to decide if I need to shift directions, alter my course, or adjust my strategies. That is usually a very good thing for me but I have to admit that more than once I have let myself fall into some type of post-show stupor and have had a hard time getting back to a steady working routine.  This time, I really couldn’t stop … the other show had to get out the door in less than a week!

So I kept moving.

Now the second show in Pennsylvania is up … and I am noticing an interesting turn of events. Even while working on and installing the Pa. show, the heightened analysis process that I use after completing milestones/projects had begun. So, instead of collecting my thoughts while I was puttering through the studio doing some straightening up … I was already in full reflection mode when I walked back into the studio upon returning.

All the drawing ables, supply tables and chairs are full of stuff!

All the drawing tables, supply tables and chairs are full of stuff!

The practical tasks seemed, this time, to jump into sharp focus and to hand. First, the studio needed re-organizing and cleaning. Working in mixed media, if everything isn’t put away after a few sessions, it can leave the materials in a disheveled heap. It was a bit of real jumble as you can see here!

One messy wheeled table (sort of a mobile taboret)

One messy wheeled table (sort of a mobile taboret)

There were transportation and packing materials to properly store. And I have to make some sense, some order out of all the resource images, sketches and photos … as well as pieces of plants, dried seedpods, maps, and other studio materials to file away or re-evaluate for use soon. (I am not sure I have ever really gotten a good filing and storage system for doing these items!) I usually look about and see if there is something that I think that I need from old resources or need to go get/create at this point.

While I am getting things in order … it is good time to do a materials inventory too. Whether there is any income from these shows or not I’ll need replenish my stock, to order some fresh supplies and repair/replace any damaged or broken equipment.

So as tools, supplies, resource images/objects, are sorted out, the periodic cleaning MUST take on a high priority! I expect that it may need an even more intensive version this time ‘round. I would call it a “spring cleaning” but we are still in the depth of winter.

As I said before, I usually build to all these tasks as I reflect on my direction. This time, the practical/logistical tasks are happening at a quickened pace. It sort of reminds me of my German colleague and friend Brigitte Weyer, who moved into a new town, home, and studio … and was painting within two or three days. Even with some of the boxes still packed.

It seems as though I am resetting for new work already!

The studio is getting back to a workable state!

The studio is getting back to a workable state!

There are two medium size drawings that I need to switch out the glass for sheets of Plexiglass (aka: Acrylic glass, Acrylite, Lucite, Perspex) so they can be shipped. And I have already prepped two large Mylar sheets … because I’ve set some ideas into motion for several large drawings

I am also feeling the need to be working on my aqueous media painting … the works on panel and paper. I have a major multi panel painting in the works and three or four smaller single panel pieces roughed in. I need to start applying some color layers. That feels exciting just thinking about it!

Look closely, I have already started laying in the first color passages!

Look closely, I have already started laying in the first color passages!

There are some large watercolors on paper in the pipeline too. I am also really chomping at the bit, anxious to get outside (even in spite of this much colder than average winter) to begin working on new small sketches and studies.

Once I have really gotten all these moving … I will, as is my praxis, let the work lead the way; letting each of these strands of working weave themselves into an organic and fairly seamless whole.

There is a good lesson to take-away from this experience. I have known for many years that I need reflection time … but I do want to avoid the post show let-down and stupor induced paralysis it can bring with it. My scheduling of these two exhibits right on top of each got really messy. You could ask my wife. Perhaps though, it taught me again to NOT completely stop … to not let rethinking and re-ordering become a false reverie.

I have new works up and running. The studio is coming along. And we are planning a few trips (combining art and personal fun) and a vacation too.

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Back to “bigger” paper …

September 4, 2013

I make images.

Duh, I make images. Sometimes though I make images that you could almost call objects; like my shaped panel painting. Most of the panel paintings are just that, paintings on panels. But the ones I bolt together into non-rectangular shapes might qualify even more as “object” than image. Other works that might be considered as “objects” are the larger of my mylar drawings. the ones that cascade off the wall or ceiling and onto the floor.

But for many years, I worked on paper. Sometimes pretty big paper.

I regularly worked on paper that was 40×60 or 30×90 or larger. Starting in the 1990s, I usually worked on paper sheets that were a bit smaller … measuring around 30×40.


Watercolor and pencil on paper, 26×40
(as of September 1st, 2013)

Well every now and then I return to that 30×40 way of working. I am not sure if I do it for comfort? … as a self-diversion? … or if there is a deeper reason?  I just KNOW that sometimes I want to work on a single large uninterrupted sheet of paper. The expanse of the surface excites me; the response of wet color or dry mark to the paper entices me. More easily than any other medium, working on a beautiful sheet of paper with materials I enjoy, I become entranced. Reverie!

This piece, Abundance, had it’s genesis a while back, late in 2011 if I remember. It began on a crisp, cool clear day in a narrow glen of western-central Virginia, below a mountain ridge known for it’s ski resort … Wintergreen. I was with my wife and “mi mum” and we had stopped for lunch when I spotted the wild looking group of bushes and a gnarled tree. The grey, nearly leafless bush was full of red berries. There were so many good vantage points with this subject. But … I was with family … so I made a quick sketch and several photographs. The little finished sketch was exhibited in a show during the fall of  2012.

Group-of-Sketches-on-the-wall,-WEB   Below-the-Ridge,-Nellysford,-WEB

This larger painting I began while that show was still up. I even showed it, in a less finished state, in December and into January of this year.  But, when it came back to the studio, I just wasn’t sure that it was done.

I set it on a drawing board in my studio and I looked at it. I looked at it from January to June.

Let me explain my quandary. I am frankly always leery of overworking a piece but I want to create a visual feast as well.  I do subscribe to an esthetic common in traditional oriental painting … leaving white space in a work, going for an understatement. It is also at the core of early western classicist’s and early modernist’s desire to seek and to express what they view as the essential in an image/object. Probably that is why I am so very drawn to the works of Charles Demuth and Paul Cezanne. They made lots of marks and layers (visual feast) … but always seemed to leave room for the work to breathe, for the viewers eye to roam, and the viewers minds to complete the image (essence). To me, it seems rude and silly to beat the audience into submission by rendering every single detail.

Even when I was young, the end results of demonstration artworks in “how-to” art books felt disappointingly over-done. (I usually liked the work at step #3 or #4 better than #6+) Well, with this one, I feel like if I take it much farther … it will be overworked. Can’t have that!

For now, I have moved it to a less active corner of the studio. I will look at it for a while again; just like I did from January to June. Hopefully I will decide more quickly than that if I want to return and do something else with this piece.

Yes, I do think it MIGHT be finished.  What I am asking is … is it essential? … is it a feast for the eyes?

New Paintings, Watercolor on Panels

September 13, 2012

I am happily exhausted. And the studio is a raging mess. I delivered a solo show Monday and yesterday … a show with 44 pieces.

Lately I have posted images of the quick sketches … wash and brush drawings and quite a few of the watercolor and pencil pieces too.

Creekside Ferns
Watercolor on Panel, 12×12

But I have been working on some paintings as well. Each of these pieces are aqueous media on (Ampersand) panels. As with the two images below, most of the pieces for this show are done in traditional transparent watercolor. I will admit though that a few also have a touch or two of gouache; what the English waterclourists referred to as “body color.”

(Actually, using body color IS the older traditional method, but it had fallen out of favor for many painters during the last 100 years or so. For me, if it was good enough for Richard Parks Bonnington and Winslow Homer … I can use it too.)

Misty Mountains, Crozet
Watercolor on Panel, 12×12

Asian Dogwood Pods
Watercolor on Panel, 12×12

As is usual for me of late, there is also a little bit of a twist. In some of the paintings I have employed the strategy of including blocks of color; color passage that both obscure parts of the subject matter in the painting … and which actually set up some type of color harmony within the composition. Those pieces are single panel images (like the Creekside Fern one at the start of this blog) and also multi-panel works. These paintings are actually mixed aqueous media; making use of watercolor, gouache, acrylic and even a latex based paint.

The show is open today and  I have just seen the installation. Quite pleased is an understatement; I think it is really well done. The front gallery, where all the paintings on panel are displayed, is a large, open, and airy space. Most of the smaller watercolor studies and sketches are displayed is an intimate little gallery, a space flooded with soft light. In this smaller space about 20 works are arranged and clustered rather pleasingly. And in the transition space between the two galleries there hangs two very large watercolors on paper and a grouping several of my small works too.

The exhibition runs through November 9th at the Staunton Augusta Art Center. For those of you who are local, the opening reception is Friday, September 14th, from 5-7.

Now, about that messy studio …

Quick Color …

September 1, 2012

While I often draw and paint monochromatically outside, I also like to do small color studies. Many have a full range of color. Others, like the first and last one below, have just a few hints of hue … not enough to carry the full weight of the original scene … but just enough to give me a hint when I take it back to the studio. Or maybe enough to send me back to the location later to work up a painting on site!
For my color sketches, the work is done with pencil and watercolor. In some sketches, I rely mostly on the watercolor, in others the pencil work is more important. Usually though, I let them play pretty much equal roles. That isn’t the “accepted” way to work with watercolor. But it is the way I like to work.

This, of course, this is just a preview of a few pieces that will be in my upcoming exhibit in Staunton, Virginia. Let me know if you liked one of these. It is great to get a little feedback.

This, of course, this is just a preview of a few pieces that will be in my upcoming exhibit in Staunton, Virginia. Let me know if you liked one of these. It is great to get a little feedback.

More than twenty of these sketches (and to be sure … the larger paintings too) will be viewable from September 14th (reception 5-7 p.m.) at the Staunton Augusta Art Center. I hope you can come … I would certainly love to see you there!

For more exhibit info … check out:

Landscape Revelations: Watermedia Paintings & Watercolor Sketches”, (John A. Hancock, Watermedia Paintings and Drawings)

Sketches, for Painting’s Sake?

August 24, 2012

Well, not always.

Artists have been drawing pretty much ever since humans made their first marks in the sand or on rock walls. After the discovery of pigments to create a wide range of colors with … some artists relegated drawing to the preparatory phase of painting or for designing other forms of art. It was as if color had completely trumped monochromatic art work of all kinds. (Sort of like how color TVs eventually replaced almost all the B&W sets.)

Throughout the Classical and Medieval periods European and Middle-Eastern artists used drawing in just that way. And while China and Japan had a tradition of monochromatic ink painting that stretched back for centuries, drawing was mostly ignored by non-artists. (Well, I am an artist!)

Around 1500, some folks began to think that drawing, even unfinished sketches, were actually interesting in their own right. If a drawing was a sort of “first edition” of a visual idea … a pre-painted image … then it might be fascinating to see the image at it’s very earliest stage. Fresh off the press as it were … straight from the mind of the artist. Tentative, quick, bold, or intimate visions … even incomplete images, began to be seen as having valuable qualities.

As this “novel view” of the 16th and 17th centuries became more wide spread, drawings even began to be thought of as independent works of art. And as artists became more interested in exploring drawing, materials with extended ranges of hue and texture became available. It was possible to draw with rich hues, subtle tones, and deep values that rivaled paintings. At the same time, many artists and viewers were intrigued by the profound beauty of simplicity that drawing could achieve. (Just like my love for the classics of the B&W film noir movie era … or the rich value range of the best black and white photographic prints.)

Well, here you go …  a few of my sketches; ones that I have been working on during the past few months. Some were completed with no intent of ever painting the subject. Most, however, were part of the preparatory process. For me, all are just as complete as the paintings they helped me create. Different, yes … but complete in their own way.

Here I am showing you the B&W ones; the sketches using pencil, ink and/or ink washes. I also sometimes make monochromatic sketches. You can see one of those on an earlier post (It has been a bit SKETCHY, so far, from July 25th). While I was working on that one outside, the extra color information seemed to provide a little better clarity. Hey, anything to help jog my memory if I decide to use it in the studio! (Besides, for me it has the same sort of appeal as a sepia-toned or cyanotype photographic print!)

I hope you enjoy getting a preview of them here. Let me know which ones you like, which ones intrigue you.

More of these sketches (and paintings too) will be part of my upcoming exhibit at the Staunton Augusta Art Center in Staunton, Virginia. Exhibit info at:

Landscape Revelations: Watermedia Paintings & Sketches”, (John A. Hancock, Watermedia Paintings and Drawings)

Color, like water, comes sprinkling down

August 15, 2012

Summer’s end; it may be fast approaching but the heat hasn’t broken yet. To refresh yourself when you were a kid, did you like running through a sprinkler to cool off ?

I loved it.

I loved it so, so much … it was the perfect antidote to growing up in the intense sunshine, heat, and humidity of Florida’s seemingly endless summers.

Now, sometimes as a grown up, I get a kick out of racing past a sprinkler trying NOT to get wet. And, admittedly, as a grown-up kid … I sometimes like to race past a sprinkler secretly hoping to get soaked!

Well, in that vein … the vein of secret and maybe silly passions … I have an artist I would like you to get to know. (Ok, it is NO secret that I have passions for: 1) Color, 2) Water based paint/aqueous media art, 3) Performance, Kinetic, or Installation art. [#3 might surprise some of you actually.]

Edwin Deen is a Belgian artist with a wonderfully simple idea: combine watercolor, a common yard sprinkler device, some water, a paintable space and a little time. It lacks the utter seriousness of the early sixties works of Jean Tinguely. (Remember his automatic kinetic sculpture/drawing machines?) For one, this work is much to colorful. It is more like the work of Tinguely’s wife and artistic partner Niki de Saint Phalle. (Perhaps you might remember her riotously colorful “shooting” based performance/kinetic art-paintings?)

And this idea may not appear to be highly significant or profound in the traditional, historic, conservative, or the neo-academic art sense. (But they don’t like much art after William-Adolphe Bouguereau … well, OK. maybe Edgar Degas and Andrew Wyeth. PS: I like those guys too.) So they wouldn’t be interested that this work has an echo of the Fallen Painting series of Linda Bengalis.

 But Deen’s idea, and the work he creates with it, is so physically playful, so visually refreshing. It makes some beautiful and joyful spaces. It might even remind you of delightful moments in your childhood … colors puddling, dripping, and running during elementary school art classes … or running through sprinklers in the summer.

Wait a moment. Feeling our joy … through water and through color. That IS profound.

You can access more information about Deen’s work via:

A great show of Mughal and Persian miniatures .. in DC

August 13, 2012

I have a real love for what most of us call Persian miniatures. Whether we are talking about are Mughal, Timurid, or Safavid paintings … I am intriqued. Opaque watercolors that, besides their sumptuous surfaces, rich patterns and intricate naturalistic details … show glorious hints of both European and Chinese visual culture. There is always a wonderful exhibition of these works in London (especially at the Victoria and Albert Museums), but only for the next 5 weeks, Washington DC’s Sackler Gallery has one too!


Detail, a representation of the allegorical meeting of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir and Shah Abbas of Persia

The Jolly Good News

The Mughal Emperor Akbar probably would be pleased with the curators at Washington’s Sackler Gallery.  The exhibit “Worlds Within Worlds: Imperial Paintings from India and Iran” shows the gallery’s love of painting, particularly the finely-detailed works commissioned by Akbar, his son Jahangir, and his grandson Shah Jahan – the builder of the Taj Mahal.

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Even MORE Hot Atlanta Art! … part 2

July 20, 2012

Yeah, at 9:00 am, and it was approaching 90 already. Muggy too. I did get all around the city in about 36 hours … despite all that heat.  You have heard of a gallery walk, we did the gallerry RUN. Atlanta folks will figure out that I missed some galleries. I did. My list was selective and … because they were setting up new shows and there were a few that were closed for all or part of the month of July. Imagine that a vacation from Atlanta’s hot summer … smart folk those art dealers and artists!

Well, despite not seeing the inside of EVERY gallery on my very selective list., there were some amazing works that we got to look at.

Abandon, by Matt Haffner, at Whitespace

The work by Matt Laffner was arresting in a action movie or a crime novel kind of way; the content was intended to grab hold of the viewer. And the flattened, almost silkscreen layered look of the image was a perfect choice to back this up. It reminded me of comic books and the covers of pulp fiction novels … in a wonderfully sophisticated way though. Laffner is tapping into our memories of pop images and updates them to fit his narrative. If you don’t ” cotton” to the comic book aesthetic,  think Golub without the tortured paint surface.

Another artist that caught my eye was the landscape painter Megan Lightell. Each of her works was square, four feet square. That format isn’t one that is traditional in landscape circles. We all know that; every time we turn on our computer printer we have to tell it if it is supposed to print in landscape format or not (usually not). Well the scale and format worked for Lightell. So did the painting of light. Whether she was giving us a bright clear light day, a thick southern day in the fields or a morning before the mist clears, I could see the light brightening up the and moving through air. In one I could almost taste the thick air of the coastal swamps and tidal rivers I grew up with in Georgia and Florida.  Here were the Southern landscape made anew that I had hoped to find.

Megan Lightell, Morning Creek

A direction that I am always pleased to find is an area that I like to explore, the visually intimate image. The ones with a grace and a charm that isn’t about the subject, ones where it is the artist’s choice of color and tone, or the artist’s material that sets up a sensual response. Something quiet that we can explore slowly and deeply.  I found that in two artists whose work I had never seen before. They were Stephanie Hargrave and Terri Dilling. Hargrave’s images are a delight; a delight in the same way that sweet, ripened fruit and Crème Brûlée make a perfect close to a meal. Each would be a perfect dessert, but if put together well … well you know.

Stephanie Hargrave, Floating series #9, 9×9

Hargraves’s range of opacity to transparency is SO nicely played in these works; there is a deliciousness found as you melt your way through the layers, past the clearly defined lines and shapes and down into a fog and haze of tone. These are not bold or dynamic works. They are delicate visual treats that you want to spend a bit of time enjoying. They really are worth the time, even when they are competing with larger works or 104 degree summer heat.

Terri Dilling, Littoral Zone series #2, cyanotype & gouache

Another artist who plays with images that flirt with fog and haze is Terri Dilling. These works get their complexity from a wonderful and unexpected pairing disparate materials … cyanotype and gouuache. Cyanotype is a old photographic technique. The invention seems to  go all the way back to 1842 for blueprinting, but Anna Atkins made the first photographic prints using the method in 1843. Unlike Anna Atkins, Dilling seems to be using a a layering of exposures to work up her images. And Dilling is also using Gouache? Gouache is of course a version of watercolor most often thought of from the designer world (animation and graphic designers) of the 1940s to 1980s. If you have a world art turn of mind, you also remember that Mughal and Persian miniatures often used a gouache type of watercolor.

But maybe we should look closer to home to see why Dilling is using gouache. Remember watercolor is usually transparent. Gouache can be too … in thin layers. It can be opaque. So gouache can hide and reveal what is below … it can tease us with glimpses, illuminating or shielding. Just like the layering of the photogram process Terri Dilling is using. Now I see why those material belong together. Evocative and a bit mysterious.

Now I will wrap up. But I have one final thing to mention … one of the biggest reasons I made this trip to Atlanta. To see Kevin and his work which is on display  at several venues in Atlanta … work that I think you will really like. Here is a taste. I’ll post a bit more in a day or so.

Ties? Oh yes!

Repair, Repurpose, and Repast

September 26, 2011

Today I was concentrating on some very practical things in the studio. I previously mentioned needing to fix/repair some minor blips on a few pieces. Well today I pulled out the sandpaper and varnishes, the masking tape and the adhesives … even some ink and paint to work on them. I also decided to spend time getting some finished paintings on panels ready for exhibition … I need to varnish their frame edges!

         (a recent small aqueous media piece … only 5 inches tall!)

It is such mundane work really. Yet, sometimes, I find it to be SO very fulfilling getting things ready to go out/go back out the door again. For me it is sort of a ritual …putting things right again. Regaining a balance before getting down to the work at hand.  And soon I will be getting some small pieces back from a show.  I will probably need to clean and touch them up too.

So, despite my tendency to let things hang at the edge of my to do list, I liked getting them done.  Sure, I will have to do a few more in a couple of weeks, but now I am ready to throw myself back into the fray.  Those new BIG mylar drawing and series of watermedia panel pieces are just waiting to be worked on. Delicious work indeed.

Busy with some new small panel paintings …

September 17, 2011

… and working with students too. The fall college term has begun, and while I no longer teach full time, I really can’t ignore them. Besides, it is fun watching them make progress.

Drawing and painting, puttering about some at home/in the yard.  Frankly there isn’t much more than that to report.

Well yeah, the painting and drawing is really exciting and I shouldn’t downplay that good piece of news.  And, OK, the weather is cooperating quite nicely for visual research/sketching outside and the house and studio will be getting some much needed electrical upgrades this week.  (Is this the first hint of stage three in the studio renovation!?  Only a little, sideways.  The electrician has to be here anyway for some household work … so I am piggy-backing for an extra $100.00 or so)   Hmm, I guess all of this doesn’t really warrant a ” there isn’t much” remark does it.  Sometimes I am so silly, jaded, or spoiled … maybe all three.

This work is one of my latest.  It is a pretty simple, understated, playful, and hopefully, an elegant little piece.  This one is only 12×12 and done with mixed aqueous media on panel.  The title is “Late Summer’s Humid Sky. Currently it is in a show at Bridgewater College.

I hope you enjoy it.

Tomorrow I am hoping to get in some good photos or drawing done along a creek not far from the house, and maybe a trip to the museum in the afternoon too.  If I get anything good from either of those, I’ll post again soon.

Uptown Gallery Workshop; Judging @ GSE, VMRC

April 24, 2011

My daughter, now studying illustration, used to complain that I judged things to harshly. Well, that is what she said as a teenager anyway.  As an art instructor, I always tried to think about the balance between challenging and encouraging my students, between being really humane while being completely honest.

Well this spring, while I was sending some of my work out for being judged for shows around the country …. I was judging again … this time for the North Carolina Governor’s School VISUAL Art auditions and the VMRC show in Virginia. Turn about is fair play.

And it helped that I was getting outside both my studio and my regular classroom settings too.  I had the pleasure of teaching a workshop at an artist’s co-op.  Great students, and so much fun to work with too. Nothing like seeing other folks play/experiment  with your ideas and techniques to stoke the engines of creative desire!

Above & below are some of their collage work.  An exciting spring indeed!

New work on Ohio walls!

October 7, 2010

Entente Cordiale

They are UP on the wall.

Both shows … the mylar drawings and the small panel          paintings too.

Many, many thanks to both Dennis and Margaret!

Well, I have to get back  to the studio and the classroom … so …  ‘Nuff said for now.

Landscape Revelations show

Delayed, As If In A Thicket

IT IS DONE! Well, mostly.

June 5, 2010

I spent six years making art in a wonderfully well lit studio in a very accessible location. The high ceilings and tall windows looked out over the townscape and the surrounding hills and mountains too.

And while I was done in that space by the end of december, the vagaries of winter weather were slowing down the renovations and construction projects in the new space quite a bit. Nothing like close to 50 inches of snow that won’t melt to keep excavations from taking place. Everything was stuffed in all the nooks and crannies or piled in the middle of the floor!

Well, construction is done … and the spaces have been outfitted and arranged pretty well. I am even making large scale works again.

To be sure, the studio will need some electrical and lighting upgrades as time goes along. But for now, I am really excited. Next time I will post some new photos and some art works too.

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