This post title came to me just like that, so I went with it. Clearly not the best way to use the word 'bevy', since it means "a large group of animals, especially quail". Shrug. Who am I to argue with my thought bubbles. After all, they have been mostly right in my life. This is my year end grouping of thoughts, in case you were wondering.
I'd like to start with gratitude. Always that. Being able to make art for a living is something that is just a dream for many. It is a privilege for me. Truly. I was lucky enough to receive 8 portrait commissions this year, sold some personal work, and acquired a gallery in Denver, Colorado, Saks Galleries. Please visit if you are in the area. Wow, my best year in a long time.
The thread of my personal work continues, working with the figure in the environment. That's the basic theme. With each piece, I throw something new into the equation, be it a new tool, a new color, or a new substrate. This year, I started working on copper, something I've always been curious about and finally began experimenting with. I wrote about it here. Although my work has its natural flow, changing a few key elements like that is enough for me to go deeper, and not rely on habitual marks as rote. I can't change my art handwriting (nor would I want to) but the opportunity to discover new territory is endlessly fascinating to me. And it doesn't require screaming in public, like bungee jumping would do. I make sure no microphones are on while I paint. It would be worrisome to a few.
As per my usual, my art is closely tied with my life. I am often asked why I paint women. And now, children. Yes, they are usually female. First off, that is my viewpoint. I am female. It is not uncommon for artists to work from their own perspectives. It can get dangerous- as far as the market goes- if the personal perspective isolates the viewer. There has to be some common ground. I know of no other way to work, quite frankly. The fact remains that I am directly involved on several levels. My hand makes the mark. That's one reason. Number two, I seem to be 'working out' a number of personal history issues. I don't have a concrete list of what they are at all. In fact, I don't even want to know. It simply seems important to release, to reveal. Number three, the 'social statement' reason is that I strongly feel that women have been sold short. We are often portrayed as bodies only. Beautiful, objectified ones, especially in figurative art. Blank faces with no purpose than to look pretty. The direct gaze, as well as allowing whatever emotion or energetic mark to live within that portrayal of beauty is my hope in overcoming the one-dimensional viewpoint. My hope. I can only try.
Juggling my day to day is always a challenge, especially in recent years. All I want to do is paint, but there's life stuff to take care of. So, I struggle with that one a lot. Also, the older I get the less logical I become. Laugh, go on. I am amazed when I look through my old business records and notice how detailed I was with record keeping, bookkeeping, the like. This year, I am bound and determined to gather my left brain back some, and charge it up. It starts this month. I need to revamp my website, and deal with all kinds of number crunching, taxes, college prep for my son heading out this fall...We all have this kind of thing as artists. I'm sure many of you can relate.
Up ahead (this will count as resolutions) I want to stop more often. I'd like to take the time to truly be grateful, more. From my family, my friends, even my flipped out cats. My Subaru. It's a little tank! Plows through snowstorms way down low and safely. The studio. My haven and unmatched place to create. Where would I do all this if not for that space?
I want to stop complaining. About all kinds of things, issues, politics, and people. We all have our places of struggle, of worry, of battle. Who am I to say anything to that? When I learn to stop more, I'd like to send out waves of compassion, instead of judgement. It just takes a little more effort on my part, just a little.
I have good intentions of doing more drawing again. Like these little cups. Simple things I can set up and just draw. It brings me back, drawing does, in ways that painting can't. The stillpoint. I need that daily more than my coffee even. (Ok, maybe not more than coffee.. ) I get so tired of talking, tired of having to be 'out there' as an artist, (as a person sometimes) but if I don't, who will do it?
So, bless you all. Thank you for reading my rambling words, my obsessive bevy of quails here. Please stay tuned for more down the pike.
I leave this post with one my of quiet teacups that sold this year.
May your year be filled with peace, more often than not.