Once again it is the season of giving gratitude for the abundance of blessings in this life. I am going to put an "art" spin on what I am thankful for this year, so here goes:
I'm grateful for the Art Community, both in a wider sense and close to home...
I am grateful for the Wonderful and Generous Teachers I have had along the way...
*Jo, Christy, Mary, Roger, Anne, Richard, Colley, Frank, Kevin, Marc, Marcie, Jim, Pam, Hayden, Ingrid, Morgan, and Calvin*....so many! Learning to excel in any endeavor takes time and money, as well as patient endurance!
I am grateful so especially for my Patrons who support me in exceedingly more ways than simply buying paintings. They have trusted me with their cats, dogs, grandchildren, homes, cars (a few of the subjects I have painted). Their financial investment has allowed me to buy paint, canvas, workshops, videos, books, join professional organizations, enter shows and competitions. Not only that, but their belief in me has spurred me to improve, take risks, get brave. And so in no specific order, they are:
*Betty *Sandy *Gay *Ray *Suzanne *Lynne *Teresa *Marcia *Kelly *Tim *Ted & Lindell *Vicki *Charlie & Eban *Naomi *Nancy *Rebecca *Ann *Renee *Mary
*Loi *Kathy To each of you, and those who purchased from shows and exhibits, you have my deeply felt thanks!!
Finally, and most precious, is my gratitude to God who called me onto this path of painting in very clear and specific ways, who is always present and faithful, who I call on when I'm in a painting pickle and don't know what move to make next, who fills me with joy and receives it back as I express it...and to my wonderful Husband, Warren, who has let me pursue this passion wholeheartedly and come along for the ride (quite literally when I'm hauling paintings to a show). His support knows no bounds and I know what a lucky, blessed lady I am!!
HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO ALL YOU ALL!!!
Don't you love it when you find a compelling novel to read? A Gentleman in Moscow (by Amor Towles) comes to mind, or Circe (by Madeline Miller). Both are, in my opinion, fantastic books for so many reasons:
*convincing, well-developed, complex characters
*interesting and original plot with a balance of conflict and resolution
*creative word choice and sophisticated sentence structure
*thought-provoking themes developed throughout the story
The same can be said about a compelling painting:
*convincing, technically well drawn subjects
*Interesting composition of shapes and patterns
*creative choices of subject and expression
*thought-provoking themes developed with color and relationships
I have so much respect for the writer who is willing to take the time and no small amount of effort to create a story of lasting value. A perfect sentence is a work of art! And I feel the same about a painting. Just as a perfect sentence doesn't have to be complex or sophisticated, so a painting doesn't need to be a masterpiece; it does need the same elements, though, of technical mastery, personal inspiration, and originality. It takes lots time and lots of effort to learn to produce work that hits this mark. The key is to NOT GIVE UP! I once heard Kathryn Stockett, author of The Help, speak at the Southern Festival of Books, saying that her manuscript was returned to her multiple times and she rewrote the book multiple times before it was finally accepted and published. So, too, painters will find themselves repainting, starting over, doing another, on the quest for mastery. And rarely will you meet a painter who thinks she's "arrived", because there is always more growing to do.
Every painting I start is a fresh beginning and a blank canvas to apply all the lessons I have learned and am still learning in my pursuit of painting well.
Be willing to be a beginner every single morning. (Meister Johann Eckhart)
you've heard how everything comes in threes, right? in October it seems that things are coming in twos for me. Let me explain:
Two more paintings for the Radnor show, the botanicals I mentioned in the last post. There was a nice group of 12 painters at Radnor Lake for a paintout and meet & greet with the new Friends of Radnor Board members. it was definitely a chilly afternoon, but we persevered and I produced two simple botanical-styled paintings of what turned out to be a toxic perennial and a invasive shrub. I didn't know that until I got home and looked them up...they just looked pretty to me!
Two finished commissions! I love my Patrons and am always thrilled when I get contacted to do a painting for someone. Ray requested a painting of his visit to Monet's Giverny gardens, specifically the beautiful lily-filled pond. Using his photo references, I developed a composition we were both happy with and wrestled a bit with all the greens to come through with this sweet painting. One thing I loved about Ray was that when he called to commission this piece he said "it feels like it is time to add to my painting collection!" How great is that!
Kathy, who has walls full of incredible paintings, must have felt the same when she asked me to paint from reference a portrait of her beautiful granddaughter who recently graduated from high school. Kathy wanted a younger version of Maura, so we poured through the photos until we both said "that's the one!" She put a lot of faith in me because I haven't done very many human portraits. They are not easy, that's for sure. Just a millimeter off on any of the features and it doesn't look like Maura anymore. I absolutely loved the challenge and learned so much from it.
And lastly, two juried into the Randy Higbee Gallery 6" Squared Exhibition and Sale in Costa Mesa, CA!! They are flying to California right now. Yippee!!
Hello! My name is Wendy and I am passionate about oil painting! Whether in the studio or out in Mother Nature, I get lost in the experience of capturing on canvas the moment and the feel of what I am painting. I pour my love and energy into every single piece of artwork and I hope it shows! This blog is a place where I can use words to talk about art, painting, life, faith, things that make me laugh, and things that inspire. I love every response, so don't be shy about leaving a comment...