Thursday, April 29, 2010

In Case You Were Wondering...

Hi Friends, 
Here it is...the studio as it stands as of 5:37 PM EST on April 29th, 2010. 

Oh my, I have got a lot going on.  Today begins the ten day countdown...and that my friends, is sad, very sad indeed.  It also means that I am kicking it up a notch, and I currently have four paintings going right now.  I wish I could stay here another three months, it's amazing the progress I feel I have made in the past four weeks...what could another twelve do?!  So, the painting in the photo right above this little paragraph is what got the brunt of my energy today.  I am really happy with the complexity of the composition, and the space that is being created, I would like to push the color a bit more, though not as far as in Tree Shrine which I feel was on the brink of...too much?  As it moves along I will post a better image.  The process for this painting has been a bit different, I began with washes to give the canvas more "history." I guess I should have taken photos of that. I also have been a bit more methodical in my approach after another painting that I kind of got a little carried away with...Jackson Pollock style. And that's all I have to say about that.  I have two other small paintings going right now as well, about 13" x 20" which helps to balance out working on the larger paintings.  I know I said I would talk about the weekend in this post, and I promise I time. Besides, wasn't this one just riveting?

Hey you! Thanks for listening! 

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Studio Update

Hi Friends, 
A quick update to let you know I am still alive! Below is an image of the finished painting which I previously posted while it was still in progress. I titled it Tree Shrine.  A lot happened over the weekend, but I am going to write about all of that tomorrow...I'm exhausted today and would like to go paint and read.  

The painting is 44" x 60" and is the first painting I have done in about two years, aside from some small explorations.  There were multiple times throughout the process where I thought "yea that could be done," but I wanted to push it until I really learned something, and I'm glad I did! I feel I made a lot of headway in this piece and have started two more paintings of similar size since completing this one.  So....we'll see! Again, more tomorrow, I'm exhausted.  

Thanks for listening!

Friday, April 23, 2010

As promised...and then some.

Hi Friends!

I am going to make this quick as dinner starts in twenty minutes! Below  is a photo of my studio from today, again see the difference from when I first arrived? Let's hope I can bring back up to par before my departure.  

And a close up of the painting on the left, which is almost done.  A few adjustments were made since this photo was taken, and I have a few more to make.  I really want to think and look for a while before making them though, and as always, I love feedback / criticism. You can get a sense of scale from the photo above but the painting is about 40" x 44".

Oh oh! And I have five new neighbors!! They showed up about a week ago, but I didn't want to freak them out by taking their picture until today. 

Mama Bird has certainly has been busy.  I keep bringing spiders outside from my studio and have a feeling they wind up in the mouths of these little guys. And if you have forgotten what I look like, here's a nice little photo of me on the deck before dinner. I think I'm looking at the wasps flying around, but also smiling because this places makes me happy. 

You're the best, thanks for listening! 

Thursday, April 22, 2010

But I Will Save That Post for Tomorrow...

Hi Friends,
Happy Earth Day!! In salute to such a glorious holiday, I went on yet another hike! I actually didn't remember it was Earth Day until after the hike...but, "whatever." I still did it. I thought I would write endlessly about how beautiful this place is, but I'll just let you see it in the photos. The trails here are wonderful, long and meandering. The weather is consistently beautiful and all of the gorgeous greens are out! Chase and I had a great talk along the way, until it got too uphill to really say much. Enjoy!

The lilacs are taking over, and they look and smell beautiful! Also, I was going to post tonight about what has been going on in the studio, but I will save that post for tomorrow. Stay tuned my friends, stay tuned! 

And hey, thanks for listening.

NOTE:  I was informed after this post that those flowers are actually wisteria.  A very close friend of lilacs

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Studio Update

Hi Friends,
I wanted to stop in for an update of what's been happening in the studio.  Since being here, as I mentioned before, I haven't been working with any pastels, which is exciting! I have been doing a lot of small graphite/acrylic/ink drawings. This week most of my energy has been going towards a large acrylic painting on canvas that measures 45" x 50".  I am really excited about it, it's not quite done yet but here's an image of it in the studio, and then a cropped close up. I will be stretching the canvas back in Beverly.  

Again, I'm really excited about it.  So is my new studio mate :

Also, today I went and bought some supplies for a sculpture I've been thinking of tackling while here. That project is still in very early stages so it might be a while before I put any images on the blog.  Hope you all are doing well, and thanks for reading! 

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Do a little turn on the catwalk...yea...the catwalk. A 360 degree day.

Hi Friends!
Today started off with a wonderful email from a friend who has made a big exciting decision, so I got off on a great foot! Then I started to paint...and I became so totally frustrated I couldn't believe it!!! Every time I think I'm on to something, I get totally pumped about it...then I step back and say "what the hell is that?!" Some great advice from a friend reminded me to just let things happen, and to stop thinking so much. We got into a discussion about "depth" and what it really means...I decided I will let someone else figure that out while I enjoy my time in the mountains of Georgia making things that may or may not change the world, but certainly make me happy, and hopefully a few of you along the way. So things really turned around for me around 12:30 today and I didn't stop painting until around 5:00.  I now write to you from my sunny (and as of yesterday, wasp free, porch) where I am sipping my Sam Adams Blackberry Witbier (I don't recommend it) and enjoying the sun and the mountains.  I am going to try and start blogging from home before dinner, because last night walking home was a wee bit scary at 10:30, especially after Chase read to me the fact that mountain lions can pounce fifteen feet.  Anyways, here are some new photos of my space, looking more and more like my studio at home each day.  

Oh, and another reason my day really turned around? Because at 12:30 I got a call in my studio that I had a package waiting for me.  I went to get said package and inside were...

...tulips, my favorite flower! So thank you to Dany for a wonderful WONDERFUL surprise. They now grace my studio and bring some color to the areas that I haven't yet splattered with paint. 

Hope you all had a fabulous day, and that you can hear the birds chirping wherever you are as I can from my porch here at the Hambidge Center! 

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

A Walk in the Woods

 Hi Friends, 

Today officially marks a week of being at Hambidge, I am so glad I have another four left! I feel like I am really just getting going. I did a few drawings this week that were completely new to me. At first I was really excited about them, but then realized I wasn't having as much fun doing them as when I was painting, or using color...more on that tomorrow. I have done so much since my last post and I was going to try and cram it all in to one post.  Now that I'm looking at my images though, I think it might be a bit too much for just one. So, I will continue to keep you all on the edge of your seats until tomorrow night. For now I will share with you a few more images of my surroundings. I went on a wonderful hike today, it was so nice being all alone in the woods. I could hear all of the noises that nature has to offer, until I started singing the theme song to the Dukes of Hazzard...which was nice in it's own right. I've been overthinking a lot of things (as I tend to do) and a walk in the woods was just what I needed to try and let all of those thoughts go. 

The last photo is of the bird I mentioned in my last post that is nesting outside my house, the photo doesn't show it, but he's pretty big! After my walk/hike I felt great! I went back to the studio and began a large painting that I'm pretty excited about. More on that tomorrow. 

Also, Hambidge has a pretty intense and diverse environment. Check here to read all about what the mountains of Georgia have to offer, and why I'm a little afraid to walk home right now (it's 10:30, extremely dark, and there are BEARS in these parts!)  

I hope you are all doing well, and thanks for reading! 

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Je suis arrivé!

I have arrived! Actually I arrived two days ago. BUT I AM HERE! I HAVE MADE IT TO HAMBIDGE! I received the news back in November that my application had been accepted for a fellowship to the Hambidge Center, and now I am finally here!  I don't think I need to say too much, I'll let the images explain why I (and the Subaru) are so, so, so, so happy here. I will say that things are different here. Cell phone service doesn't exist and internet is half an hour away from my studio.  I love, love, love it here. 

So there you have it...that's my studio/home for the next five weeks! It's all mine and it's incredible! My bedroom is up those stairs, but it's no where near as cool as the studio. These photos were taken right upon arrival, so the cleanliness and order of the place has dissolved quite a bit in the past forty-eight hours. The previous occupant left me a note with advice to "follow my passion", as well as a small drawing, a phone card, and a grocery discount card. I will post new photos of the space, as well as works in progress soon. I am really enjoying being alone. I wake up early and have the entire day to myself, with no outside distractions, and I work all day. I have been painting and haven't even touched my pastels. I'm working mostly on paper but have  a large amount of canvas I plan to work on.  I haven't left the mountains yet for town, but may have to do so soon...I need sandpaper and milk.   My fellow fellows (hah!) are quite a wonderful group as well. I am the youngest here, but have made friends with Chase, a sculptor who is only a few years older than me.  He has plans to attend the University of Colorado at Boulder this coming Fall. More on my new friends soon. 

Well, boo yea. I'm psyched. I love it here. Right now I am writing from the Rock House, literally made of rocks. The frogs are chirping and the stars are brilliant. This morning I went on a hike but it started to pour half way through, it rained all day until about five.  I saw a bird I didn't recognize, I watched a bird that nests outside my window, I thought about Obama, I listened to the radio, I ironed some canvas, I gessoed some paper, I ate some oatmeal and I painted all day.  

See you tomorrow, and thanks for listening!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The Last Leg - DC to Charlotte and then on to Georgia!

Hi Friends, 

I had a bit of a wrench thrown in to my blogging schedule and I'm a bit behind on updating you regarding my travels down to Georgia. So I will make this post quick in an attempt to update you, but also to get back on schedule!! On Monday April 5th, I arrived in Charlotte, North Carolina, a city I have never been to before! The six hour drive from DC was very nice, and I enjoyed stopping at each state's welcome center to get my free map (damnit!)  I also continued my French lessons and enjoyed a standard 70 MPH most of the way.  

The nice thing about Charlotte was that I had not one, but two friends awaiting my arrival!  I spent that night with my friend Laura who I met at the Vermont Studio Center. Laura and I really connected while at Vermont over a number of things and seeing her again was really wonderful. She has a beautiful home that is an old mill house and she has put in a lot of work to bring back the original hardwood floors and high ceilings. She also has a wonderful "junk yard eye" and has furnished her house with beautiful and charming furniture. She lives in the arts district of Charlotte and we decided to walk to a local pub for dinner (best portobello burger ever.) My other friend, Emily, is down in Charlotte on business. She works for an organ building company called C.B.Fisk and does quite a bit of traveling to help install organs in different locations. This time around the organ brought her to Charlotte where she was kind enough to give me a tour of this magnificent instrument (I even got to walk all around the inside!!!) Though I am sure she loves wherever she goes, I was very happy to hear that her next trip will be to Korea to be a voicer's assistant! 

After a wonderful 12 hour stay in this up and coming city, I was on to Georgia. I am happy to say this is the leg of the trip on which I successfully completed my road-trip homework. The images below complete the series of images documenting each state's welcome sign. Please note that after DC I no longer had a passenger to take these photos, so if the quality is not that great you can assume it's because I took it blindly from the driver's seat while barreling down the highway (don't worry mom, eyes on the road at all times.) 

That last one is my favorite for obvious reasons! About two hours after taking that photo I arrived at the Hambidge Center, which I will tell you ALL about in my next post. 

So my friends, the road trip has ended (for now) and I am writing to you from the wonderful world known as the Hambidge Center. My next post will be all about my arrival, but for now I will leave you with two more images...I came over a hill and something told me I was really, really close to Georgia. 

It was a water tower in the shape of a peach.  And there you have it...

Up next: My first two days at Hambidge! 

Miss a post? Read them here! 

Thanks for listening. 

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

My DC Weekend!

I love DC. Every time I visit I get a bit nostalgic and begin making plans to move back to my city of birth.  DC has so many amazing things to do all within a short walk or circulator ride.  My brother and I arrived in DC on Friday night making this the first time all three of us had been in the city together since my brother graduated from High School 13 years ago!!! Friday night we all crashed pretty early, which was a good thing since we wanted to get up early the next day.  We woke up and were out the door by 10:00 (after some home made cinnamon bread) and we were on the Mall for the Cherry Blossom Festival by 10:30. I hate feeling like a tourist, but this was pretty unavoidable as I took pictures of everything (including one that made it look like the Washington Monument was coming out of my brothers head...hah!)

Katharine and I being cliche

Katharine, Michael and I in front of a very dirty reflecting pool.

Performance on the Mall. 

Around two o'clock, we decided to head back to our old neighborhood and check out our house. The person who owned the house before us was an artist and he had painted the house a bright teal color with purple trim.  When we moved in and bought the house we nixed the purple but kept the teal. Our teal house has been a landmark for people on Capitol Hill for almost thirty years! Well, the time has come for us to re-paint the house and we have a difficult time letting go of the original color, but felt it no longer was working with the neighboring historic homes. It is a row-house, so it's color does affect the whole block. So we chose a somewhat toned down version of the teal and it looks wonderful! It was a little strange because when we got there the tenants were having a gathering in the back-yard but they had no idea who these people looking at the house were! 

This was taken from across the park in front of the house.  See the teal poking through? That's where I grew up! I was a really lucky as a kid, we only had two walk about five blocks to be at the capitol building, and the Smithsonian was about three metro stops away! This makes for a never boring weekend as a kid.  The rest of the weekend was full of amazing food and lots of very immature jokes.  I also was very happy to visit a dear friend of mine and participate in the wonderful Seder she hosted! I departed from my beloved DC at 9:30 Monday morning and began the drive to Charlotte, NC where two friends are currently living (one temporary, one permanent.)  I am actually writing to you from Charlotte, but that post will have to wait until this afternoon.  

Today is the day I arrive at Hambidge and I need to start getting ready! Finally! I will be in my cabin/studio in about four hours from now.  

Up Next : A Post on Charlotte and my first day at Hambidge! 

Thanks for listening!