APR 29 2013

This weekend was the first exposure I had to what is called a gallery/studio tour. It was, by and large, interesting and added to my data about how things work or semi-work in my local arts community. The hours of the tour were 11 am to 6 pm Saturday and Sunday.

Saturday I arrived just after 1 pm with my Android tablet upon which I had loaded my most current images. I only have one piece in the tour show and unlike the resident artists, I couldn't give anyone more than a two-minute tour to my one hanging work. :) The Nextbook tablet works great for showing folks my work, BTW. It is a 9" tablet with a nice hi-rez screen. It runs on Icecream Sandwich and is easily connectable to my Windows PC.

There were a few guests wandering around when I arrived plus the usual quota of resident gallery artists. There was also a 'guest' artist who had one photo in the current tour exhibit in attendance. He had found a spot in the back area, near one of the resident ladies. He had a photo book plus keychains and earrings for sale. The lady sharing her space with him was painting on a large landscape when I arrived.

The tour traffic was sporadic throughout the time alloted. People usually arrived in small clumps. We had a nice lady out front with a Yamaha keyboard playing live though somewhat subdued versions of some classic tunes. She was nice and friendly, certainly a positive addition to the ambience of the occasion.

I did get the opportunity to show several folks my hanging work plus images on the tablet. Awhile back I had printed up several business cards and I gave them these as well.

The music lady who arrived at two, played until five upon which time I helped her load her equipment into her vehicle. I found out that she was 5th grade teacher at some local school who also plays music locally. I'm purposely not revealing any names, BTW, partly because I don't remember her's.

I brought my digital camera as well as the tablet and took something in the neighborhood of 50 snaps during the course of the event. Over the past several exhibits I had not noticed anyone recording them for websites/posterity, so I picked up a nice thin 16-megapixel camera with 5-times optical zoom. It's a Samsung, model DV300F. It uses a Micro SD card which can be picked up cheaply these days.

Usually the organizers tell us if they need refreshments of any kind, but I'd received no e-mail to this end and so arrived empty-handed----well, save for my tablet and camera. :) I had luckily eaten lunch at home before my arrival, so I was not hungry. I did not partake of the drinks or food that was set out on the table up front. I figured they needed to last the afternoon for the tour folks.

By and large, it was an enjoyable afternoon. I got to know the resident artists a little better and though I'd probably been happier home doing some work, it at least got me out of the house and into a venue that I'm interested in.

Sunday I arrived a little later---just after 2 pm which was when the music was scheduled to begin. I brought some liquid refreshment this time. Today we had an acoustic guitarist/singer who played old standards plus some original songs. He was quite good and personable. I enjoyed his set.

I am glad to say that attendance Sunday surpassed that of the previous day and the resident artists seemed more relaxed than they had Saturday. Though one lady who had had surgery a few days before, did not return on Sunday.

Anyway, that's an abbreviated overview of what occurred over the weekend. The Mexican photographer with the keyrings, book, etc., suggested that I send him some jpgs of my work so the next time he's in Mexico he can have earrings made up with some my images. I might just take him up on that. :)

APR 18 2013

I want to apologise to folks who are going to my personal website and seeing it not exactly as I would like it done. I haven't updated it in a LONG time. I've been very good at keeping my newer work uploaded and visible to folks here at Artwanted, but since I really need to revamp my personal site from stem to stern, I just haven't taken the time. Truly, I'd like to have someone else do it, but I don't know who that someone would be. :)

I would like to have my work buyable via Paypal. I'd like a more easily navigable design, but between day work and night art, I've been reluctant to dive in to that project. So, again, I apologise for the antiquated site and I will try to do something about it in the near future.

APR 02 2013

No sooner have I gotten over the uncertainty of entering one call for entries than another is delivered to my in-box. This one is the 2nd annual West Austin Studio Tour. There is a long-running East Austin Studio Tour and they decided last year to expand it to include artists working west of Interstate Highway 35. This one lasts four days (though the work is up longer than that) and is meant to introduce the local populace to artists, galleries and working studios. So this one should prove interesting.

I have yet to submit my jpgs for this show and I am still in the process of deciding what work should be submitted. I have just over a week and it's possible that the work submitted hasn't even seen the light of day yet. :)

Addendum 1: Last night late I submitted three jpgs for the upcoming show: 'Bird Fork,' 'Inner Bird Psychosis' and 'Bird In Transition.' I have some newer work than these---just not MUCH newer and I haven't lived with these newer pieces long enough to look at them objectively. I could have gone a couple of months further back than I did, years even, but I think it is important that those attending a show see that an artist is still amassing pieces on a consistent basis.

Addendum 2: Last Friday, today being 4/16/13, I received notification that 'Inner Bird Psychosis' was accepted for the 2013 West Austin Studio Tour. I am in the process of framing it.

I have noticed that the smaller pieces I submit---these being usually 5 by 7 inches---are routinely denied entry into these shows. Most of my paper pieces are 8 by 10 inches or smaller, so that excludes a large body of my work. Is this due to 'size' prejudice, or is something else at work here?

Maybe next show I will submit ONLY 5 by 7 inch pieces and see what happens.

MAR 08 2013

It might be interesting to some of you to know how I felt about this latest jurored show I was invited to enter. Called The Figurative Show, it was advertised as showcasing the human body. As anyone who has perused my images is well aware, I do not usually go THAT particular 'figurative' route, though my work is usually figurative in nature.

After researching the juror, a retired art professor at the University of TX, amongst other places, I found myself in something of a quandry. Do I do a piece or pieces specifically for this one show? For almost a week I played with doing some work more along the lines I saw this emeritus prof do. It looked wrong and felt wrong, so I did nothing 'for' the show that I felt I could actually enter. In fact, I just wanted the 'show' out of my head, for good and all. After several more days, I was able to return to what I usually do and felt happier for it.

Did I enter the show? Ultimately, yes, I did. Yesterday morning early I entered three jpgs of more or less recent work. They were 'Trust is a Most Elusive Flower,' 'Chance Encounter,' and 'Figuratively Speaking.' I was going to enter the paper version of 'Numb' but at the last moment chose 'Chance Encounter' instead. I could have chosen NOT to enter the show at all, but I felt that would be conceding defeat before the battle, and I do like my battles after all. :)

I am hopeful that after years in the academic realm, this juror's vision of art has not calcified to the point of immovable rigidity. My best work---the work I like the best---comes from a place that is extremely personal and specific to me. I wouldn't ask the juror to do work like mine; and I am hoping the juror would not ask me to bend my work to fit the square peg of one little art show.

I have been accused more than once of over-analyzing, so this could very well be another case in point. :) Some time next week, I will have my answer. Either way, the world will continue to turn and the birds will still sing to me in the morning, unless some catastrophic event in the meanwhile prevents both. If that happens, then the art show will become a decidedly moot point.

FEB 05 2013

So I've now been accepted into three local art shows since mid-September of last year. After almost thirty years in self-imposed isolation, I decided to rejoin the art community. From this exposure, I have sold a couple of pieces. I am supposed to feel good about this, right? I do to a degree, but these are truly baby steps. And there is some confusion on my part as well. Unlike the 3rd Paradigm group, I am not part of any group or movement. Is there anyone 'out there' doing work along the same lines as myself? I haven't found them as yet. Or, more importantly, they have not found me.

My recent more colorful work has been well received. But it is still unadulterated me, so that is a good thing. I would hate to think I had to compromise my artistic integrity to make people take note. An iconoclast by nature, I would feel the rankest hypocrite it I were to do so.

If I could catagorize my style, maybe I would gather others into the fold. How about emotive expressionism as a possible 'label?' But a lot of my pieces also contain encrypted or 'veiled' messages that even elude me at the time of their creation. SO that being said, maybe Enigmatic Emotionalism? Or maybe I should just leave well enough alone and let someone (or no one) in the future have a go at it. Probably someone who can look at my work with an impartial eye would do a better job at giving my type of art a proper name.

JUL 10 2012

Today's date being July 10, 2012, I wanted to give a more involved explanation of the works I have been uploading over the last several days. I have mentioned in my descriptions that I am using felt-tip pens as well as my usual gel pens and color pencils, but I wanted to explain the last two I've uploaded, 'Scream,' and 'Grin Wide (and bear it.)' These two actually began as small drawings I had done previously, and so these could be considered reinterpretations. Also, now I think on it, the same can be said of 'The Egg's Nest Hypothesis.' I find it more difficult to be 'spontaneous' when using the felt-tips because they are so intense and soak so into the paper.

I did go spontaneously with 'Sentinels Three' and 'The Eggs go Up; The Eggs come Down' which explains their relative simplicity as compared to the others mentioned. These were my first two attempts at adding the felt-tips to the mix and after them, I wanted to try my hand at reworking some earlier drawings. So far I'm rather enjoying the process, which is why I've virtually finished one a day for almost a week.

I have one that I have yet to upload, a piece called, 'Does this Egg make my...' which is a bit more humorous than the others...well, the others aren't really humorous at all, are they? ;)

Anyway, I thought some explanation was in order. You might notice also that most of my pure color gels are re-workings of older drawings too. Using the felt-tips and the pure gel pen color work is more like painting, and even Miro, amongst others I am sure, would do preliminary drawings before tackling a painting.

JUN 29 2012

Recently an artist on AW messaged me that my work had touched her deeply, and, of course, I was touched in return. This is a rare occurrence for me. I've gotten the distinct impression over time that my work has been falling on orbs with less 'vision' than mine. By that I mean by minds who look for their artistic guidance in the past or present only and who do not seem to realise that art evolves, even as we do---albeit both appear to be evolving presently at a rate that makes yearly glacial movement seem massive by comparision. :)

It has been said that true artists of any discipline live at the fringe of society and that from that outsider's viewpoint they see the world a little clearer, or maybe just differently, than the average Joe. I cannot speak for others, as my experiental data is of a personal nature only, but Plato wanted artists to rule in his Utopia and he may have been onto something. Though, in his day, artists were easily distinguishable from the farmers, merchants and soldiers. Today anyone can buy some paints, brushes and canvas and proclaim himself 'artist.' Or one can buy a computer program and bypass the canvas or paper altogether. But, sadly, most of the 'product' is derivative and does not progress art one nano-inch.

Many who have been successful in their lifetimes will be forgotten over time whereas some few working at the fringe, outside academia and the superficialities of 'the art world,' will someday be hailed as visionaries. I'm not at all sure I will be one of those, of course. I'm not even saying I'm in the running. But at least I am not an imitator or a duplicator. When you see one of my pieces, you see 'my' vision, 'my' creativity, 'my' striving for inner perfection---something I now know I will never achieve, but I'm a stubborn cuss so I persist. :)

Thanks for reading this through to the end. Hopefully someone will take the time to read this who is NOT be a spammer or a small degree thinker. A small degree thinker is one who looks upon things at 180 degrees or less, whereas the 360 degree thinker looks at a thing from all angles. ;)

JUN 10 2012

I am presently attempting to update my galleries; fill in the gaps as it were, in an attempt to give the viewer a better more expansive understanding of my (hopefully) artistic progression. :)

I will also be posting some additional paintings going back to the early part of the century. Sounds funny to say that, but it's true. I am well aware that this is not the venue to great monetary reward, but I would like it to be a comprehensive repository for some of my better images. Maybe in this way, some of my work might impact others in some small way.

Art IS a univeral language, right up there with mathematics, but it is unfortunate that so many know only a couple of verbs, a handful of nouns and maybe three adjectives. ;)

MAR 24 2012

All great artists are in some ways philosophers also. In fact, art can be interpreted as thought made visible. So, with this in mind, philosophy of thought should not fight philosophy of the visual, but rather should complement it. Unlike a writer who uses the symbology of words, the artist uses a visual language. Though this language may be more direct than a verbal one, it can contain elements that are unique to the artist. This is why Art is open to translation in much the same way different languages are. The language of visual art is more liquid and abstract than the verbal which goes a long way to explain why a work of art has almost as many 'translations' as it has viewers. Of course, as in any intellectual endeavor, the viewer gets as much out of it as he puts into it.

Is art life imitated or life re-imagined? Or is art the vehicle through which mankind progresses? It is certainly not through technology that man evolves, or we would have seen some calculable move away from devisiveness and bigotry which leads inevitably, it seems, to hatred and bloodshed. But if it IS art then we have most definitely not reached the 2nd Renaissance as yet. We are more closely aligned with the Dark Ages if one is to believe the headlines and the unconscious move toward lives spent in the pursuit of triviality over substance.

Yes, I've been thinking about 'life' and 'art' in somewhat the same context because, of course, there can be no art without life and, I hazard to say, life without art isn't much of a life. :)

APR 25 2011

I had someone ask me an interesting question yesterday at Easter festivities. I had mentioned I wanted to do more to get my art out there before the public and he asked,"Well, what kind of art is it? How would you describe it in marketing terms?"

I responded with something like 'interpretive art' because, I thought, my images are very open to personal interpretation by the viewer. BUT I find that what the world calls 'interpretive art' is something else entirely. I foolishly thought I'd just made up a 'classification' but I was wrong---again.

I've been labelling it 'abstract' here merely because it's not any of the other. So fellow artists, if you were to describe my art to someone who had never seen an example, how would you go about it? It does start out as automatic until some level of the conscious mind takes over and works it into 'something' I, the so-called artist, can be more or less happy with. But what is the end result and what can I call it without feeling the description either inadequate or overly pompous?

Ok, you think about it and I'll think about it and we'll see what we can dredge up. Thanks.