Good evening! Been a long couple of weeks again. I don't think we've ever had so much company at our house as we have this summer. Even on holidays. When I haven't been entertaining here, I've been visiting elsewhere. I tend to be a reclusive person when it comes to getting work done. I like to shut out distractions and work for hours at a time. It's been difficult to find that kind of time lately but I've managed to get these three paintings done over the past week. It's not all bad... it's been nice to see some folks. Some I haven't seen in a really long time. In one week I've had visitors from New Zealand and Finland. It makes me feel well traveled when I know people from other countries... but the truth is... I haven't been to Finland or NZ. Some day though.
I took out a book from the library about American Folk Art. I've been into it lately. American folk art kind of blossomed through the hard artistic work of average people. People who didn't have classical training in drawing and painting and for that you can always see these really strange proportions and perspectives, which makes them kind of juvenile or childlike. On the other hand, I always think there is something really interesting happening in most of these paintings, drawings, collage, textile etc. In particular I enjoyed this painting called "Dr. Philomen Tracy". Which has sort of a secret subtext going on. (And I'm all about subtext these days). It inspired me to do a folk art painting in the same vein. Tied curtains, windows, fancy dress are all fairly recurring themes in american folk art.
And as an added note, "corvidae" is the family of crows, rooks, ravens, magpies, etc. (The more you know!) One of my favorite songwriters / poets, Aaron Weiss, has a great line in one of his songs for his band mewithoutyou, of a crow saying "Every rook and jay in the corvidae has been raven about me too." I always thought that was a pretty clever play on words, most of his lyrics are pretty clever in fact.
"Dr. Philomen Corvidae"
I don't really have a huge explanation for this one, I just kinda started painting. Kind of stressed out these days. Is it obvious?
This last painting means a lot to me for a couple of reasons but I think mostly because I really empathize here with this bear. I've had both the fortune and misfortune of growing up in the digital age. I often feel torn between what I have to do and what I want to do when it comes to my career and life. People expect you to act a certain way and present yourself in a certain way while still maintaining some part of yourself that's genuine and honest. It can be really hard to find equilibrium between others expectations of you or and your own expectations of yourself. Especially when the same kind of professionalism is hardly reciprocated. I've always kind of been an advocate of just being yourself even if it's weird or normal or whatever. I often struggle with whether or not it's appropriate to just go build a cabin out in the deep woods and never come back, ha. Just the other day I broke my cell phone and I've been taking my time getting a new one because well.... I just don't care. I like art and music and if I could just do that forever I'd be alright. There's a lot to be discovered. The past few years of my life have been devoted to making that happen because I don't want to be stuck somewhere that doesn't make me happy. Who would?
"The Age Of Refinement" or "How Old Habits Die"
Until next time.