6th Annual Art-a-Day Challenge starts Wednesday, January 1, 2014!

Friday, January 31, 2014

Totally Fun - Thank You!!

 Thank you for your posts, your pictures, your rich and honest words, for making this a fun place to come again and again.  Even though I was a total slacker, I have thoroughly enjoyed sharing creative community with you.

I am so itching-eager to spend time in the studio and have a specific project I'd like to do - so, February might be my art-a-day month.  As always, everyone welcome to post any time and the more the merrier.

If you're from the region -enjoy the return of the sun!  What a powerful source of joy that is!

January 31, it's a wrap

The past couple days of January were spent doing a field study and then some studio work to complete. The few days of sunlight got me wanting to wander out and paint. Though a bit breezy, I did paint briefly in the truck -- a bit cramped and messy! It was fun to study the scene though and just get down a few preliminary strokes before heading to the studio.

There's a lovely sheltered path that passes under a high embankment of trees along the Columbia River off Columbia River Park Trail. Perhaps you will recognize it. The river laps the shoreline, nourishing the abundant eco-system there. I was thrilled to see a figure in bright yellow walk into the scene, and got a shot of him before he disappeared into the shadows. (Follow the progression of the painting below, final is shown last) 
Field Study - "River's Pause", 8x10 oil on board, ©Laura Gable
I got down just enough color to suggest the scene. I enjoy the freshness of this piece.
FINAL: "River's Pause", 8x10 oil on board, ©Laura Gable
(The scene was refined a bit, small strokes added, focal point adjusted, colors and value adjusted.)
Here's the best awareness for the month -- the most rewarding part of art for me is the disappearing into the process of creating ... Moving into that space where time seems to be suspended. May you find magic in these moments like I have.

Thanks for journeying with me. I enjoy the creative interaction, seeing what others are up to in their processes, and value the comments we've shared. Thanks so much Bobi for making this available to us again, and for guiding our steps. You are a jewel.

Visit me on my personal blog if you want, I'll post there throughout the year. http://lauragable.blogspot.com

Last efforts of the month, by Pat.

Today is still January. Sorry about no pics but you can see the newest of the new at The Salon in the The Roxy after Monday. I will hang on Mon. We are prepping for that class today. I am also firing a glaze and a bisque kiln now. This weather is nice since we were running short of suitable clay. Some clay is out on the retaining wall to dry a little and now we are all set for next week. The Richland library expected the 3-D art removed yesterday so it was rush,rush this AM. Cyberart 509 exhibits there. We are supposed to rehang at AA on Monday but I don't think I will make it but if there is a pillow to sit on some more of the 100 bowls for charity might be made. Bobi,this is genius and I wish more folks shared. Posting pics would be nice but I am embarrassed to keep asking She Pat to post for me. She is actually involved with a "Photograph a Week" for a year with a friend from Portland Or. She should post. Maybe next year. I wish we could figure out an exhibit or the work. Thanks for everything you do Bobi. A note to Chel, I think that is what it is about. According to the "rules" of conceptual art, if you thought about it you have done it. The "rules" of conceptual art now there is an oxymoron. It has been an honor to be associated with Bobi, Chell, Laura and all the rest of you. Thanks Pat

Thursday, January 30, 2014

What One Month of Awareness Can Do...

Well, one month flew by! I can't say I created art for myself every day but I became very aware that art  is an inextricable part of me. Throughout the month I was very conscious of the desire and commitment to make art every day. I was very surprised how often my mind created; stories, pictures, paintings, poetry, dreams, fantasies, goals, it seemed almost incessant. As I hosted all these aspects of creativity, I felt my self open up to a larger part of my creative self. It seems as though the bits and pieces of dabbling in my past are being brought to whole.

 I feel very free at the moment, the possibilities endless, and I am very curious to see where this freedom takes me. Maybe it's mid life, maybe it's the struggles over the last few years, maybe it's having someone pass away close to me or the culmination of these and other events of my life. My center has opened a bit wider and hopefully it will remain this way or open even further as I let my self delve in.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Jambalaya

Have finally finished my mixed media work. It's pretty jazzy, and I've titled it Jambalaya. Mixed media on black suede mat board. 20" x 8"

Chris Walling

Progress

Hello. I might have finished my painting of dancing Buddhists Monks today. I Lifted from the new Nat Geo mag. It might not make it out of the studio or it might get hung this weekend at The Salon at The Roxy. I went to Lowe's and bought some gold spray paint and sprayed the edges like a frame. It will be sprayed this weekend with acrylic along with Miles and the painting I lifted from a Purex ad. Pics tomorrow hopefully. Thanks Pat

Grey-Scape

"Grey-Scape" 6x4 oil on card, ©Laura Gable

Who is ready to see the end of these temperature inversions, grey days, mist, freezing fog, hoar frost, intermittent flurries, and freezing rain? We start to realize the value of LIGHT in our days, and which gives us so much to study as artists. A moment ago I saw some actual blueness in the sky so am hopeful that the skies will turn today.

One of my artist friend's recently mentioned that even on cloudy days the sky is actually lighter than it is when it is full of brilliant blue. It does make sense that light grey is lighter and brighter than the cerulean and ultramarine blue skies we crave. The pervasive greyness alters and unifies the landscape's colors and tones. The value scale falls in the middle (2,3, & 4 on a scale of 1-5), as most bright highlights and deep shadows fall away. So with this in mind yesterday, I painted our local hillsides and waterways from memory. I know I would do better with a photo reference, but this moody landscape is emblazoned into my psyche! Greyed color can actually be quite lovely and serene. The yellows in the foreground were even greyed. Compared to the other colors they seem so bright. The cheat grass and other nimble brushes within the marsh take on some varied and interesting colors this time of year.

So my awareness of the day: When I open up and really see with these two treasured eyes of mine, I can find beauty even when things are gloomy and grey. Find the mystery in the misty days.

PS - we are almost done with this challenge. I didn't do a painting a day, but I tried to do something creative most days and when I was too tired to pick up a brush, I even counted the creative thoughts as valid and pertinent!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Cloud Scape

"Cloud Scape" 8x10 oil on board, ©Laura Gable

Painting clouds can be challenging as there are no hard edges. This is my attempt doing so from a photo of a distant horizon and the earth curving away above. I'm not sure I've captured the curving away of the sky, as this was very vast. I do like the feel of it though, and the bits of orange that crept in on the left side of the lower sky. Even though it may look like it, there are no intentional monster faces in these clouds. But if you see something there, am sure it might be a window into the individual psyche (smile).

Today's awareness: I have this wanting to create scenes from memory, yet I find I do much better if I have something to reference in front of me while I paint. Seems like a simple awareness, but it is powerful none-the-less.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Check out Kimberly Camp's posting on Sojourner Truth.

Pots - 1/26/14 by Pat Fleming

Hello. This is a picture of some of the mugs I mentioned earlier. The ones in front are stoneware and the ones in the back are earthenware. I was surprised that there were only 52 left in the barn. Along with the 36 in the house I am short of the 100. We decided to include 4 pairs of matching mugs in a basket to the ACT auction along with a thrown coffee filter holder and some tea and coffee. Today I trimmed some bowls and fired 2 test kilns. The tests were for cone 1 pale dirt glaze and the cone 8 wood ash glaze. The reason for firing to cone 8 is to re-fire at cone 1 and that re-oxidizes the glaze and we get a very mottled iron red. That glaze was the subject of the first article I had published in the 70s. I was afraid to share my secret but after I did it became obvious that no one cared so sharing seems to be safe in the art world. Let's all share. Thanks. Pat

Saturday, January 25, 2014

1-25-14

Hello. We went to look at The Reach with Bobi yesterday. That was cool-thanks Bobi. Yesterday I fired 2 kilns, one glaze and one bisque. Today I fired a test kiln to test a couple of glazes that are causing me grief. A friend has notified us that she wants some mugs for the ACT auction coming up nest week. Luckily I work every day and have many mugs but I want to have matching stoneware ones and my cone 8 (2300 F)glaze is causing grief. The dirt glaze is always reliable but the wood ash one is not. Today I trimmed bowls for the Summer, Safe House, charity action. I couldn't sleep a couple of days ago due to realizing I could use the 1200 lbs of cone 6 clay that was given to me a few years ago so I will continue the bowls using this. At cone 6 we have a really simple, stable, glaze and so it goes. I will table the cone 8 stuff and continue the cone 6 and earthenware (1984 degrees F) for classes. I will try to get She Pat to post some photos but the pots are unfired so they are not pretty (what ever that means) If you look at the new National Geographic mag you will see a picture of dancing monks. They spoke to me. I will paint one of the dancing images instead of Jimmi H. I got in a heated debate with a new art teacher somewhere in the either. She thinks she has discovered that System Analysis is applicable to art education. I signed off with a shot about her not wanting to follow old people who have already gone through that and found it didn't work. When one is young, one thinks they have discovered a new trail when the trail has simply been discarded and grown over. Systems Analysis, as it is taught, is diametrically opposite of what we should be teaching in art. Thanks. Pic tomorrow. Pat Fleming

Friday, January 24, 2014

Clover Island Stroll

"Clover Island Stroll" 11x14, oil on board, ©Laura Gable
Today was the perfect day to complete this unfinished plein air study. It was started on a lovely September day on Clover Island here in Kennewick, WA. The island has been going through a facelift over the past few years, with the addition of the lighthouse and these lovely foliage lined curving paths with boardwalk viewing bump outs. Though it was a breezy day that started out with intermittent sprinkles, it turned into a bright sun filled afternoon ... perfect for painting lighthouses. This pair of friendly walkers happened by at the right time so we can get a sense of scale of the vertical shapes.

Today's effort involved adding the figures, and refining the shape of the trees and clouds, plus altering the colors on the lighthouse and pathway. I'm wanting to do more in this series. Hopefully it will warm a bit so an outdoor excursion is possible ... or I will dig through my photographs to find a worthy candidate to paint. So that's the day's awareness ... paint in a series.

This was shared by my friend recovering from hip surgery, and it feels very fitting for this painting: "God is good, He widens our path so we don't stumble." May you have wide clear paths today. 

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Heart's Afire

"Hearts Afire-revised" 12x12 oil on 2.5" cradled masonite board, ©Laura Gable
I can't get too far into the year without doing a sunflower painting. This few day's effort was actually altering an old painting that sat around the studio too long. The concept was there, just needed a bit more for the execution - two flowers almost combined together to make one. One a bit bigger and stalwart, the other a bit closed in and nurturing. I enjoyed the way this painting has moved closer to my original intention to portray the two hearts afire, with more juicy paint and muted grayish areas, lighter and darker tones, more definite shadows. It says a lot about love and deep friendship.

This is painted on a 2.5" deep cradled masonite board.

A poem I recall from high school days which seems fitting today.
Don't walk behind me, I may not lead.
Don't walk in front of me, I may not follow.
Just walk beside me and be my friend.

-Albert Camus
Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.

Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/albertcamu100779.html#yUgrl8qasdtRJV1W.99
Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.

Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/albertcamu100779.html#yUgrl8qasdtRJV1W.99

January 23


Am growing concerned about the overall composition.  Somehow, I have to get your eye back to the picture and away from that dangling branch on the lower left side...  These blossoms are HARD.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Thank you! to you diligent ones!

I, apparently, have been practicing the art of patience with myself.  :)  
The good news -I believe I accomplished yesterday (and again today) more than I have in these last two months.  Certainly understandable but, dang. it's nice! I even sketched!



Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Death, Art, and Being

When someone passes it affects me greatly. It renders me into a deep state of contemplation, questioning all that I know, all that I don't know.  It is as though my protective facade ceases for a moment and leaves me open to the vulnerability of questioning all that I have done, all that I want, and for what purpose I am here for.

The same questions that have been asked from the beginning of consciousness.  What are we here for? What is our purpose? If we are not helping others in some manner what is the point of existence? Does what we do matter?

When will I find my voice? When will my art be my true art, speaking from the depths of mind and soul...raw and exposed? When will I cease to be afraid of the fire burning within...to be the totality of who I am?

It seems that no one seems to know anyone, not even themselves. Those who do know who they are seem to feel the need hide; for fear of mockery, for fear of not fitting in, for fear of having their sacred center ripped from them and used as some sort of dissuasion. 
See that? That's what happens when you expose your self to the world". 

I have decided as I've gotten older that it is not being unknown to others that is most harmful. To not be honored,  to not be recognized... is of little matter. 

But not being true to oneself...."dying with your music still inside", is a tragedy. 

Today I contemplate what it is that I most need to honor in myself, to sing from the hill tops, not caring if the world sings with me, or against me.  For in the end, isn't that what matters? To die knowing you have been your most true self in all of its glory and humanness?

This is my art today.

JANUARY 21


Remember - GO SLOW.  There are places here where I saw a huge shadow - along her jawline, down her throat - and I DANGIT painted too long, too dark, all at once.  BLAST ME.  The nice thing about this paper (and hopefully, the paint colors themselves) is that I can remove some of it - some more than others.  I succeeded in working all around yesterday, I can see that, and the new challenge is - where do I blend the person and the branches.  How distinct is the boundary?  This is definitely more pains taking then a simple portrait and the challenge continues to be to not spend too much time in any one place so the entire painting grows all at once blending and making one cohesive whole.  It is fun that this really isn't a portrait but a painting, which sounds weird...

Monday, January 20, 2014

JANUARY 20


Again, a day late - took this this morning before I started working on it again.  It's coming along, I just have to be sure and not get too caught up in any one part - keep working around and around.  I like how her face is a part of things and not THE thing.  If I can keep the colors clear...

A little of this and that



Well I have done some sketching with the Urban Sketchers  down at The Blank Canvas and I have tried to finish a couple of old paintings...progress below.




I liked stage two and now I am discouraged and stuck. This last week I was too busy to get anything done but the Urban Sketchers. But alas I have not totally given up yet.  
One other little artsy project I got sidetracked on was reviving some old rapidograph pens I decided to dig out.  I have not drawn anything as of yet with them.  I actually like all the fussing and repairing of these antiquated pens. Thanks to Adrian and his box of parts ;)

Sunday, January 19, 2014

dreaming of sunshine

Dreaming of sunshine, on Sandypoint Spit, Ferndale Washington.  No wait, I just drove back from there, not a dream.
A group of 6 tapestry weavers from the PNW met for a retreat. I drew this with a micron pen and added colour with Art Bars.  Fine Australian Tapestry Workshop Yarns, on the beach?  Well no, not quite.  In a well lit cabin on the beach.  On Saturday, the snowy mountains across the bay and in the distance, were showing off.  I took lots of pics!
patti