Monday, May 3, 2010



Here’s a reflection to ponder from Damien Hirst: How could they call it “Arts and Entertainment”? There is not all that much that “entertaining” about making art.

I have been organizing a conference, showing my geldings, teaching pastels, and building websites. Pretty much everything BUT painting.

However that doesn’t mean I am not thinking about painting all the time.

In March I headed to England for the Easter Invitational Art Exhibition at Woburn. This was my second year to be invited (I have been invited for next year too!! YAHOO!). And going back to England to see family and friends is always an eye opener since we moved back from there in 1993. Amazing what has changed and what remains the same.

Happily I did get to some galleries and museums and have come back with some ideas to get into the studio and get to pastelling. (Nothing like a long flight to help cogitate and incubate and hopefully formulate new ideas.)

I found it interesting that the number one draw for a majority of folks is colour to a painting. And if this is the case then it shouldn’t matter in what medium one paints.

The second thing that drew people to my art was the monoprints I had pulled of horses. People enjoyed the motion or the gesture of the horses.

Gathering even more information: bird portraits need to be painted for those that are looking to be reminded of their bird or a bird they have had a relationship with or even seen in their yard.

(I am thinking that might be the same case with many portraits of people too.)

The abstracted pieces of birds seem to be more interesting to people that just want to own and appreciate art…for art’s sake.

Either way is good…and I am just glad to have gotten closer to understanding it. It does change the thought process of composition! Non objective paintings versus portrait paintings require quite different rules for composition.

That brings me to yesterday. I have been cleaning the studio for two days…or excavating it as a good friend suggested. I have been brutal in throwing stuff out and really enjoying it.

And as I started to get on myself for not having painted in awhile I had to laugh. “Let me understand Nance. You have unpacked and stored unsold paintings. You have updated your inventory lists and cleaned your studio and that is a BAD thing? Or do you embrace the process and know that you will have a much better studio in which to work?”

I find myself, many times, working in the “OH GOD the movie situation”: Thinking about a painting for 5 days, doing it in one, and taking the 7th day off.

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