Thursday, June 1, 2017

Almost a Month

Every person is born into life as a blank page and every person leaves life as a full book. (Christina Baldwin)

This past month has been one whirlpool of emotions. It almost feels like a year or more. My sister's sudden death, my bazak trip to the US to say goodbye, my new bond with my sister-in-law that graciously  open her heart and home to me. All are still swirling around in my head. Since my return, I have been more or less in a robot state. Not really being able to sit and do one thing for more than 10-15 minutes. Jet lag should have stopped already. Today decided that I have to post and get back to my creative being and hope that this will help move ahead while keeping these new feelings close to my heart. I am grateful that I have this blog and my art and to be able to get these feelings out.

On the Tuesday after my arrival home, our workshop was held in a nearby park, Park Shoham. It was a good feeling to be back and with all my special artist friends. This is a special place with antiquities along with shade trees and picnic tables. We had visited this place previously on a Passover break in 2015

Click movie icon top right

As you can see the park was alive with wild flowers and thistles. We were lucky with the weather as well, a cool day after several very hot days.  I did take a lot of photos and a few sketches. What a surprise that one of the yellow flowers was also growing in my "garden"

Image from Park

Pencil and crayons
23 x 33 cm

Ammi visnaga

From Park

Ammi visnaga

Charcoal and conte
23 x 33 cm

Friday, May 5, 2017

Doodle Colored I

Every morning is a new garden. (Leza MacDonald)

Old entry. 
Isn't it wonderful when you discover a new flower in your garden! My garden isn't really specially cared for.  We dried our lawn when the water prices got too high. Its mainly wild grass, lavender, perennials, and in this season lots of wild poppies.

I started this blog maybe a week ago. Wow how life manages to change so fast. You get into a routine and everything falls into place that is till you get the jolt. That's what happened to me last evening when I received a surprise call from brother-in -law Tommy.  My baby sister had suddenly passed. She hadn't felt well and didn't sleep well so decided to take a morning nap, and quietly slipped away. They say a sudden heart attack. Right now as I am writing this I feel as if I am "robot" mode, trying hard to digest it all. Debbie was our miracle baby, born 68 years ago at the weight of 1lb 6oz!!! No more short sweets posts, just a hole in my heart, These flowers are for you Debbie!!!

36 x 25
Crayons  Oil Pastels over Doodle I
Brown Paper

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Out of the Box

When you come to a roadblock, take a detour. (Barbara Bush)

Each year Heleni prepares a special project that we work on at home and bring in for a general critique.  This year was a bit different. We were to prepare a presentation verbally and visually about a subject, concept, or idea, not necessarily about art. We all drew lots and each week, we take a break from our work for the presentation. On the 18th of April, my turn came.  

Instead of giving a talk about getting out of the box I decided that it would be better to have them do it as part of an exercise.  I brought paper, crayons, colored markers, charcoal etc. So I told them to start a drawing and timed it to 5 minutes. Then instructed them to tear the paper in two sections. Place one section face down and continue on half that was shown for 2 minutes. Then do the the same for the second half. Then I asked them to cut the halves in half and gave another 2 minuteson each quarter. 

Neomi and I made a collage of the work on a cardboard format. 

100 x 70 cm

We mixed them all up for this collage,here is an Album link where you can see the work as well as some general images. All had a grand time and I hope that somehow I helped them look at their art with a new perspective.

My Visual Display

10 x 20 x 6 cm

I got out of the box by making small statues in small boxes. Haven't done this type of work since my college days!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Doodle Doodle Dandy

The workshop is not a class to make art; it is a class to make mistakes, to rework, not to make finished pieces. (Rick Rotante)

I am really glad to get back to blogging. Holidays behind us. I hope that those that celebrated Easter, Passover, and any other holiday around the world had enjoyable family times. We had a long two weeks break from workshop and I am glad to get back. This week was my turn to make a presentation. This year our home projects were to prepare a presentation on a topic or concept and present it verbally as well as visually.I will post more on my next blog. I didn't do much in class, didn't even take out paints. Had a piece of heavy brown paper, and a few stencils and started just to doodle away with just an HB pencil. 

Started on the bottom left with free doodles and then used some stencils and masks of stuff I got from a craft store. I am still debating what to do with this, sort of kitschy right now. Probably some washes and then we'll see. 

Pencil Trails WIP
25.5 x 35.5 cm
Brown Paper Hb Pencil

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Fun with Paper II

For me a square is not really an abstract shape. It's more like a window. And a rectangle for me, really is a door, something we could pass through. (Pat Martin Bates)

About the quotes. I am learning about new artists. Her work is amazing.

Aside from my writing course, I am also taking two other courses through MoMA. The first is In the Studio Postwar Abstract paintings   What is different about this course is that the instructor demonstrates how the painter worked in the studio and invites participants to try their hand. The first painter is Barnett Newman, a painter that I was not familiar with. Haven't tried his zip technique but it is amazing, I can't wait to try. Remember he painted these in the 1960's!

This is a continuation of Fun with Paper I. These papers are a light beige color not as heavy as the red.

An Orange Sea
36 x 25
Oils with Cold Wax

Through the Window
25 x 36
Oils with Cold Wax

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Fun with Paper I

Creative vision contains a playful quality. (John Briggs)

Today in my workshop I brought some cut paper that I had laying around the house. It's time for you to get some color. Two pieces were an earthy type of red and quite heavy with a texture. The other pieces were just heavy beige paper. I am sorry that the colors in the photographs are not what I see. Maybe I will try again when I have a bit more time.

I am off in an hour+ to my weekly babysitting. I am anxious to see what Uri has done. This week he is taking an Art Course at the Jerusalem Museum,  The kids have Passover holiday for 2 weeks.

The inspiration for these pieces came from a post from Jane Davies about working with 2 complimentary colors. She showed pieces from a demo she had using blue and orange. I sort of followed suit.

Playing with Perception
35 x 35 cm
Heavy Paper
Oils with Cold Wax 
Plus Collage Pieces

Let's go for a Swirl
35 x 35 cm
Heavy Paper
Oils with Cold Wax 
Plus Collage Pieces

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Blue & Beige Collages WIP

No need to shop for a better you, or to work overtime to make bigger promises.
Keeping the promises we've already made is sufficient.  Seth Goldin

I feel that my head is splitting. I am working on a writing course through Coursera. Actually, Academic writing, I feel like I am back in college. That's not so bad but research and reading and picking the key issues are taking me away from painting more at home which I miss doing.

 These collages were made last week in my workshop. Cold wax and oils and collage pieces. I am using a limited range of colors. Heleni says they are finished but I feel I can work on them some more, and even if I make mistakes I will take them in my stride. So back to class they go and will go with the flow.

Will prepare more cut canvas as well. May try some cold wax on paper.

33 x 33 cm
Oils & Cold Wax

32 x 35 cm
Oils & Cold Wax

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

More Tissue Paper

... a habit that some artists might relate to. I like to start a painting off in a mess and then try to harness and control the thing.  Robert Genn 2004

I was just reading  The Painters key newsletter Ordering Chaos and it just seemed to jump out at me.
Starting out messy and putting things in order.  Just what I am doing, although I don't always get the "order" part.

Today I literally played with my tissue paper. Format was heavy watercolor paper with gesso. Wanted to see how this medium worked with layering the tissue paper. Had a LOT of fun and liked what came out. Thought of adding paint to them but I think I'll leave them alone for the time being.
The yellow did not photograph well it is much brighter.

Dead Sea
42 x 56 cm
Tissue Paper collage
Watercolor Paper


42 x 56 cm
Tissue Paper collage
Watercolor Paper


Saturday, March 18, 2017

Chain Reactions

It would be fascinating to wire up an artist with electrodes to measure exactly how many choices must be made during the process of creation. (Francis Boag)
Isn't it funny how chain reaction works? This morning while reading Dotty's blog that is exactly what happened. She wrote about the study made on gratitude and me, with sometimes my obsessiveness, had to find what study etc.  After about 5 search steps I did find an abstract of a study,  But one of the related options on the page brought me to the subject of laziness, which I get almost daily. From there to a few Youtube videos. From there to this site with lots of videos, Of course, signed up for newsletter getting some interesting videos and MP3 files. One on meditation that I always wanted to try and couldn't get the proper concept. Well to make this long story shorter I tried it out and have started my 30-day challenge of 20 minutes meditation. It was not easy, that I can tell you. I felt it was the longest 20 minutes ever, but I am glad I did it and will continue. What has all this has to do with my latest painting? Well just wanted to share what going through my head.

Spring is here and as usual here a very short season till summer and its heat.  Found some interesting cuts of flowers, bows, pink etc and this is what came out.  I am not sure that these are finished as Heleni says, but I probably will let them rest a while.

Signs of Spring
Collage Oils and Cold Wax
30 x 32 cm
On cut Canvas

Pink Bow
Collage Oils and Cold Wax
29 x 32 cm 
On cut Canvas

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

No Paint Today

Whoever wants to understand much must play much. (Gottfried Benn)
Today at workshop I went back to kindergarten! Hurray!!!

Because Heleni wasn't able to come but had made sure the facility would be open, we worked alone. Only 6 -7 showed up so it was an intimate workshop, I started two new collage paintings and this week brought them to class for critique and further work.  Heleni said they were done. I think I can work some more, but Heleni many times stops me, mainly because I sometimes ruin them. This is a dilemma for me because in the online course I am taking there is a different philosophy. Later when I post these collages I will talk more.

Now back to kindergarten! Among some of the formats that I always lug along where formats in corrugated cardboard. I also had my new set of colored tissue paper and lots of collage material. Remembering about lesson 6 which is about formats and proportions thought I would start to tackle this.

Cut some of the formats into different proportions, decided on one composition format, landscape. Cut and pasted some magazine pieces on each. Then thought, what am I going to do with all my colored tissue papers. Decided to paint with them. Rip, cut, glue I was having a time! These are WIP.  On format 1  I pasted some transparent paper in an attempt to bring the bring that section together

Format 1
26 x 36 cm
Corrugated cardboard

Detail format 1

Format 2
25 x 26
Corrugated Cardboard
Magazine collage
Here Heleni stopped me. 

Format 3
13 x 36
Corrugated Cardboard

Format 3

Format 4
36 x 13 cm
Corrugated Cardboard

Detail  Format 4

I loved the way I got variations of color with the overlapping of the tissue paper on each other and on the magazine pieces. Have to learn to control or perhaps not.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Dancing Lines Finale

All large tasks are completed in a series of starts. (Neil Fiore)

Remember my dancing lines? Well I think I have brought them to some sort of finale! Well until I decide otherwise!

Did some white Posca dots, did some veiling, more crayons, and new orientations. When I did some veiling some of the watercolor crayon marks bled.

Mixed Media
18 x 20
Watercolor Paper

Mixed Media
18 x 20
Watercolor Paper

Mixed Media
18 x 20
Watercolor Paper

Mixed Media
18 x 20
Watercolor Paper

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Extreme Composition Lesson 5 I

Real courage is displayed by those who are afraid to go, but go. (Anonymous)

On large cheap drawing paper make marks in various methods
Make a viewfinder and isolate and develop one area and then another. 
Connect those areas, and then connect with the whole. 

I made about 6 starts here are first 2

50 x 36 cm
Random marks 
Spread with credit card

50 x 36 cm
Random marks 
Worked two areas with lines
veiling, transparent collage pieces
View-finder 19 x 19 cm

50 x 36 cm
Random marks
Large brush stroke 
Lifted and blotted with small paper

50 x 36 cm
Random marks
Large brush stroke 
Two worked areas
Crayon work and penwork
View-finder 15 x 20 cm

Please excuse photography, I see now part was in shadow.

Final resolutions coming! Para Para!!!

Jane's advise!
Finally: resolve the piece. This, of course, is the hard part, and it is up to you to find a way to do this. Take your time. Each piece will be different, and some will not lend themselves so easily to resolution. Do your best. If your piece is at a standstill, unresolved, leave it. Move on. Don’t agonize, and feel free to post pieces that you feel are unresolved. Just don’t say “This Piece Sucks” or anything like that!
Dotty's advise!
Find your brave spot!

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Two College Street Collage

Collage is the noble conquest of the irrational, the coupling of two realities, irreconcilable in appearance, upon a plane which apparently does not suit them. (Max Ernst)

Imagery from my alumni bulletin. What memories I have of my College on 2 College.Street Providence, R.I.  It has probably changed immensely, should visit through google maps.  I remember walking through the Museum to one of the buildings, all was connected. Felt that all the artifacts were my close friends.

I like how this came out. Limited colors and sort of grid format. Love working with the transparent collage papers, have to make some more.

36 x 50 cm
Cut Canvas
Oils & Cold Wax

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Making by Hand Collage II

Collage-making, for me, is basically an act of painting, allowing me to indulge in an appetite for immediacy. (Abe Ajay)
Found this quote on Art Quotes 

This collage started out with a lot of promise, but in the process at one point, it got completely lost.
This morning I looked at the finished painting, and it just didn't register with me. I just HAD to do something. Usually, I can let things rest but I couldn't with this. Started to scrape, take off collage pieces.I added veiling, scraped, palette knife, transparent pieces, everything but the kitchen sink. I don't think it is finished, but I at least I can look at it.  This is a question, sometimes starts with a little more work can be done, Looking at some the stages I can see where it got lost. Why did I get so wild with the red?

Here is painting as I left my workshop.

36 x 50 cm
Cut Canvas
Oils & Cold Wax

After my attack this morning! Dotty may the authorities after me! 

36 x 50 cm
Cut Canvas
Oils & Cold Wax

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Extreme Composition Lesson 4 Collage

Lesson four is all about variety. How much variety can a composition take.? 
Using a variety of collage papers form a grid collage. Don't use the same collage piece twice.
Then using patterns made on transparent sheets try to connect the various elements. 

Collage I
22 x 33 cm

Collage II
22 x 33 cm

Collage III
22 x 33 cm

Used a variety of transparent papers: Thin plastic film, baking sheets, and wax paper.
Haven't been able to able to find tissue paper as yet. 

I have to be better organized. Have to have a bigger supply of options and then limit them.
Enjoyed the process, helped release pent-up energies. Not sure if the compositions work, they are still a bit fresh.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Making by Hand Collage WIP I

I am experimenting doing collages with oils and cold wax. These are done mainly in my weekly workshop. Sometimes I paste the pieces on at home and then work on it at my weekly workshop.
In this piece, I am using cuts from my RISD alumni bulletin.  I forgot to take a photo of the collage pieces before applying paint so the first image is with the gray background color,
Previous collages: Reflections and Diptych Collage.

Oils & Cold Wax Collage  I

Oils and Cold Wax
Start with Background color

Sunday, February 19, 2017

New Roads

This morning while checking my mail I opened Chris Lalley's blog and aside from her lovely painting was a quote that I really connected to.
"If you don't know where you are going, any road will take you there."
Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
I feel that I am traveling roads that I don't know where they are going, in hopes that they will take me to where ever I am going.I just hope I will know when I get there! Speaking of roads I have to mention Frost's beautiful poem The Road Not Taken
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Robert Frost
Yesterday I was feeling out of sorts. Maybe I was incubating something. Rested most of the day reading, watching TV, napping. In the evening felt up to tackling my dancing lines project. I had already cut them into four parts and they had been in my view all day.  The question rose, still in bed I remembered that at one time I had bought a small, and I mean small, set of gouache paints. They seemed a good choice for the situation, although I had never painted with them. I bought them in the anticipation of an artist that was to make a webinar on gouache that never materialized. So I took them out of their hiding place, took a few of my Rosemary Ivory brushes, and with a small jar of water on my side table went to work. It was a juggling act but worked itself out.

These are all  18 x 21 cm. Two I rotated and two were kept the same. Click to enlarge and view in the light box.

Bottom Left

Bottom right

Top Left

Top right

These are the four in  their correct positions

Reminder of where I started
before cutting

Hope to be traveling a new road some time today. May take them outside in the sun.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Dancing Line Part Three

Remember Dancing Line part 2. Well thought I about to cut it into smaller parts. Not just yet. Bought pen and ink at the store and decided to try my hand on this piece. Took to the pen very nicely. But whoa and behold some creatures started to come out of the woodwork. Actually I liked them so I did some more crayon work,

Not to get too attached I will be cutting this evening,

Dancing Line  III WIP
35.5 x 42 cm

Black and White

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Extreme Composition Lesson 4 Variety Variety Variety

Lesson 4 is all about variety. The first exercise was to make as many marks on a paper with no background, using crayons, ink, paint, cutouts etc. Now I  have to go back and doodle more on some of the marks.
There were questions to ask oneself.

• How difficult was it not to repeat elements?
I found it quite difficult, I have to increase my library of mark making.

 • Do any of your collections look like interesting compositions in themselves? Or do they all look disjointed?
Very disjointed

• Are they fun to look at?
Yes in a way

• Did you discover any new ways of making marks?

• Did you use processes or materials that felt uncomfortable to you? 
No, not really. Tried pen and ink which was new for me.

• How difficult was it not to paint a background or connect the elements with some unifying principle?
Slightly uncomfortable.

Next part is to make three distinct marks and connect them in various ways!
I made 3 pages of marks!!! Click to enlarge!

 Bye for now!