Archive for May, 2012

Chairs and Other Obsessions

May 25, 2012

Lately I have been STRONGLY drawn to a few different types of imagery lately – chairs, ghost images of houses, and flowers.  Well, ok – I have always been drawn to flowers…but the attraction is a lot stronger lately.

My notebook of cutout collections

It is always fascinating to me how the subconscious works itself out – if I let it.  When I am in an art-making frenzy for a show (or just in general) I always love seeing how similar motifs appear over a series.

For instance, I just recently discovered that a couple of years ago (while I was still single) I kept painting myself.  Alone.  In pretty dresses.  Not just any pretty dresses though – old BRIDESMAID’S dresses – which, at the time, were the fanciest dresses I owned – which was the original reason I chose them.

However, I was also fighting the loneliness, self-doubt, and spiritual struggles that came with me wanting to already be married, but still being single.  Looking back, I can see the struggles and triumphs that I faced as a single woman wanting to be in a different life situation, and it came out through my art.

“A Certain Place”, acrylic on canvas, 30” in diameter, 2009

I see it in the poses of the figures.  I see it in the dresses that I chose.  I see it in the color palette.  I see it in the highly patterned backgrounds juxtaposed with the realistic figure.

I am excited to see what these new obsessions – chairs, flowers, mixed media instead of straight painting, ghost images of houses – coupled with so many life changes – moving to a new city, being engaged, being married – will manifest in the coming months leading up to the wedding and beyond.

MORE CHAIRS!

I have always loved cutting things out and arranging them together.  I used to do it as more of a way to sketch out ideas for paintings, but these are starting to take me in a new direction.

I cut these out of an old botanical illustration book.

Some of these cutouts have been in my notebook for years, and I am just now using them.  I am quite the packrat when it comes to art materials, which is serving me well right now in this new phase of life and art.  Some of these images that I cut out years ago have a completely different meaning to me now.

Love the Bleeding Heart – will have to use that flower carefully.

Flowers and toile

May 18, 2012

The other day Mom and I went to Import Flowers in Nashville, and had a wonderful time looking at flowers for the wedding!

I suspect some of these flowers will start making their way into paintings soon!

Also, I HAD to show a photo of our china – Blue Italian by Spode – which actually does relate to some art that I have done in the past, but have considering bringing back some elements of…strange sentence…anyways…

Several years ago I used to buy toile fabric and wrap it around stretcher bars, and then incorporate some of the figures in with my own figures.  I think I shall try this again.

Here is one more flower pic. 🙂

AVA Show

May 11, 2012

Last Friday night the Association for the Visual Arts (AVA) opened their new show called “Micro-Analysis: A Small Works Exhibition”.

It was a juried show, and since I had several small pieces (the size restriction was no larger than 12 inches), I decided to submit three images.

This is the one that got in!

Loss of Self, mixed media on canvas, 12 x 12”

The show will be up until June 16th, so if you are in the Chattanooga area, please stop by and take a look!

The title, Loss of Self refers to those moments of spiritual rapture when your human identity is lost and your spiritual identity is found.

The Next Chapter

May 9, 2012

Well, let’s see…since I last blogged, I have moved to Chattanooga, started working at another gallery, and became engaged!

Outside the Ellington Agricultural Center – by Cali Ashton Photography

Life is moving really fast for me right now, but so is my artwork.

I have started doing mixed media pieces – in an attempt to broaden my portfolio and to go through some ideas more quickly.  Another change – all the new mixed media pieces are SQUARES.  I have worked with the square format before, but it has been a long time.  I am so used to the compositions required of circular canvases that I have had to relearn some elements about the square composition.

Cloud, mixed media on canvas, 20 x 20”

In addition to the many life changes, I feel that my artwork is going through a stylistic change as well.  Creating the mixed media pieces has allowed me the freedom and experimentation to transition to the next phase.

The piece above, Cloud, was an important piece for me to get through.  I have so much swirling around in my own head right now – wedding plans, family, Murphy (the dog), more wedding plans, friends having babies and adopting, living in a new city, taking time to hear from God, working at the gallery, building my relationship with my future husband, more wedding plans…you get the picture.  I could do a whole series of “Clouds”…maybe I will just do that…

I am excited for this next phase in life – new website, renewed blog, new art series, and new husband!

Check back often – I am going to be better at updating.