Saturday, November 20, 2010


Left side
Right side

(click images to enlarge)

12" x 24" x 1.5"
acrylic on canvas
Available for purchase directly through the artist (contact Kristin)

I was inspired by Colorado artist Kate Dardine's recent quest to revive half-finished, forgotten paintings that have been sitting around the studio.  This buffalo painting was, for the most part, finished - but I wasn't happy with the final result, and it has since been collecting dust.  I decided to use some leftover paint from recent pieces and try to work as loosely as possible (I save all of my extra mixed paint in tupperware containers...once I spray them with some water and close the lid, they can last for weeks).

I've also been reading an anthology of literature by the American Transcendentalists.  It has a lot of classic pieces that I could re-read time and time again, as well as some really fascinating journal entries, etc. that I've never read before.  The Transcendentalists' writings have been a foundation in my life since I first delved into them...Ralph Waldo Emerson, in particular, really speaks to my soul. 

I decided to choose a quote by Emerson (his work is in the public domain) to write on the sides of the canvas...the image of the lone bison really seemed to call out for something from "Self-Reliance".  The left side of the canvas features the following text, handwritten in a Sharpie pen (which was surprisingly difficult):
"Whoso would be a man must be a nonconformist. He who would gather immortal palms must not be hindered by the name of goodness, but must explore if it be goodness. Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind. Absolve you to yourself, and you shall have the suffrage of the world." 
...and the right side features this text:

"Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind." - Self-Reliance

 When I feel like I need to loosen up between other paintings, I might continue this trend and try my hand at creating some similar Transcendentalist-themed paintings.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A Moment's Rest

A Moment's Rest
acrylic on canvas
24" x 36" x 1.5"
Available for purchase at Revolution Gallery, Issaquah, WA

I've been using a different method lately when I paint.  To build up the impasto layers, I would normally mix pigments into an acrylic matte gel.  I would then apply that wonderfully frosting-like paint to the canvas with palette knives, and, after letting the impasto layer of paint dry, I would add a bit of brushwork with thin glazes.  I've been using more and more brushwork on top of the impasto layers over the past several months, so I've been accordingly changing the process a bit.

For this painting, and for most of my other recent work, I've been starting off each piece by applying a thin layer of pigment to the canvas with a brush.  I then apply acrylic matte gel only (no pigment added); I move it around on the canvas with palette knives, and my intent in doing so has been to create more motion in the image.  Once the thick gel layer has dried, I apply thin washes of pigment.  These washes interact with the original background color, which has been softened and muted by the semi-transparent matte gel.  I don't go through pigment nearly as quickly as I used to, and playing with the matte gel in its non-colored state allows for a lot of creativity.

Joni Mitchell's "Night Ride Home" album has been my painting music of choice, lately.  I've been listening to it nonstop.

Nature, I would be thy child,
Sit and worship at thy feet;
Read the truth upon thy face,
Wait upon thine accent sweet:
I would put my hand in thine,
Bow my head upon thy knee,
Live upon thy love alone,
Fearless, trusting all to thee.
-Mary Morgan, "To Nature"

Monday, November 8, 2010

Seattle show

I'm excited to be starting my month-long show at the Burk Gallery in Seattle, WA.  We helped to hang the paintings last night, and the arrangement looks great.  It's a mix of older and newer work, and the pieces flow really well together. 

The official opening reception is on Thursday, November 11, and there will be an additional closing reception on Saturday, December 4.  If you're in the area, I hope you can stop in & say hello and enjoy some art and refreshments! 

Burk Gallery
340 15th Avenue East, Suite #350
Seattle, WA 98112

Opening Reception:
Thursday, November 11, 5 - 8 PM
(part of Capitol Hill's Second Thursday Blitz Art Walk)

Closing Reception:
Saturday, December 4, noon - 6 PM
(Holiday Show)


In other news, I will hopefully be posting a photo later today of a new painting, so stay tuned.

My portfolio encountered an unfortunate loss recently: Crossing the Yellowstone is no more.  It was damaged by the shipping company while it was en route to Freshwater Studio & Gallery.  Apparently, the poor painting was impaled by something while in transit. :(

Rest In Peace, my dear buffalo!