Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Save the Detroit Institute of Arts

At this time there's a lot of denial floating around, but there seems to be a true risk of bankrupt Detroit having to sell off  parts of the beautiful collection of the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA).

This would be a shame for art lovers everywhere, and would not solve Detroit's problems.  Recently I learned of a petition we can sign online to at least express our viewpoint of this terrible idea.

I've signed it, and I've forwarded the link to my artist friends.  Please consider visiting this site and signing as well  As an artist or art lover,  whether from this area or from another city or state, you owe it to the next generations to prevent this collection from being ravaged.

The Petition states:

There is talk of selling art owned by the City of Detroit, contained within the Detroit Institute of Arts, to pay off the city's debt. This to me would like New York City selling the Statue of Liberty, or Washington D.C. selling the Washington Monument. If we designate the Detroit Institute of Arts, including all of the treasures within, as a national monument, this would protect and preserve them for future generations.

Please follow this link to sign the petition. SIGN HERE   
Or leave me a comment if  you have a good reason NOT to sign, I'm interested.   
Thanks so much.

Friday, August 9, 2013

A Breakthrough?

I just finished the second of these two paintings, the abstracted one, below, and am excited to share them both right away.  The more literal image, at left, was "finished" a month or so ago, but modified again just recently.  These paintings feel very right to me:  They feel like Mine, and mine alone,  but with steps forward.

I want to continue this progress, but have to think about what it took me to get here (first credit goes to workshops with with Judy Morris,  Mike Bailey, and  Marilynn Derwenskus, all in the past year and a half - I recognize all their influences).

What I did, what I want to do again: I  zoomed in on the dogwood petals to satisfy  my need to feature the architectural and bold shapes, and to push composition.  I'll need to think "macro" again. By starting with a fully representational image, I learned it well enough to step away on the second version, and to use the bold shapes abstractly: not my normal path at all. But I think I can do that again as well.  And I got to use my patterns, which I love dearly (I just need to keep them subtle enough).

The last painting I posted (laundry on a line) came back to haunt me after a while: I kept seeing it on the screen and have decided I don't like it at all. I sure hope I haven't jinxed myself by posting THESE two, which, right now, I am very very happy with.

(A quick special shout out of thanks to Mike Bailey for the bonus lesson at Kanuga, showing how he stretches W/C paper: these stayed SO smooth and crisp and flat even with the soggiest of washes and floated colors, and came off the board ready to frame - without the ironing I've resorted to in the past!)

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Acceptance is wonderful !

Social Climbers
"Social Climbers" is one of two paintings of mine accepted this year for the Our Town Exhibition held annually at the Birmingham Community House.  It's a short exhibit, meant to generate sales to raise funds for the Community House's many programs.  It begins with a splash of a party, an additional fundraiser.   This is one reason I am always happy to fork out the application fee: artists in the show are invited to the reception gratis.   Also, last year  both of my two paintings that were accepted were sold: so I have that to live up to.

In any case, this is wonderful news to hear, just before vacation. Like a birthday present. The vacation itself is a birthday present, of course, with the frosting being that, each year the Perseid meteor is "held" in honor of my birthday.  We always try to get to our cabin on the lake for that week, so we have the premium night sky to help us enjoy (wish us luck either staying awake or getting up in the wee hours).

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Kanuga Chatter!

So much news the past couple of weeks about "chatter" -
 and not very nice news.

In my corner of the world, the chatter has already shifted to a wonderful new topic, and I think it would be great to spread the chatter.

On August 1st we could all finally download our applications for the 2014 Kanuga Watermedia Workshops.  A few days later, the glossy brochure finally arrived.  During the the last weeks of July,  my email was alive with conversations wondering why we hadn't yet gotten the brochure, discussion about the various workshop teachers, and comparing the initial course descriptions (handed out at the April 2013 sessions) to the ones that were now found online.  Talk about chatter!

 My friend Pat and I have now attended Kanuga three years in a row (I know, we are just newbies, but I think we've agreed to keep going every year as long as we can!) and were waiting with bated breath to register.  We dithered a bit about our choices of teacher, mainly about the second choices.  Not sure why we spend so much energy worrying about the second choice, since when we mail our applications (together) generally on August 1st, we've gotten our first choices consistently.  Knock on wood!  But lots of chatter going back and forth on that topic.

Last year Pat and I talked some new artist friends into trying Kanuga. In spite of a LONG lunch telling them all about what fun art camp was, and lots about what to expect, I think they were still a bit overwhelmed on registration day. Face it, there is a LOT to do on that day, and I bet all of us were overwhelmed the first time. After a few years, though, the familiarity of the routine and the anticipation of the week outweigh any stress.  These "new" friends do seem to have Kanuga fever, though, and so we are having a reunion lunch tomorrow to reminisce about the old days (just this past April, wasn't it . . .) and perhaps share some art work done since then, inspired by our various workshops. Are they planning on attending again? We hope we'll find out tomorrow!

And I'm sure we'll all talk about what we hope to experience this next year, with our various choices.

Do you have Kanuga fever? If so, tell us about it. If not, why not? Are you a Springmaid addict instead? Let's get the chatter going!!