Friday, December 14, 2012

Apple Sauce

oil on linen on panel / 7x5" unframed / $85

Click HERE to purchase

How this painting will look framed:

I found this beautiful pot at a thrift store and had to include it in this painting, Apple Sauce. The neutral   color (a variation of the background color) of the pot with its soft edges on either side becomes believable through the added highlights and a bit of color to show off the reflections.

I really did make apple sauce with Honey Crisp Apples. The apple sauce was sweet enough without having to add any sweetener. The only thing was... I used a different pot. This one was too pretty to cook in!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Popcorn and Oil

oil on linen on panel / 7x5" /unframed / sold


How this painting will look framed:

Popcorn and Oil was a delight to paint. This painting was a lesson in edges. I loosely painted in the shape for all the popcorn pieces and the bottle of oil. Onto the cool white mass of popcorn, I applied warm white paint heavily (impasto) to pull out the shape of selected pieces of popcorn. Notice whereever there is impasto, the edges are hard-bringing that portion of the popcorn forward giving the popcorn pieces dimension.

The challenge was to maintain the shimmer of the oil in the bottle and make the bottle look glass-like, a  liquid and a solid. The top left side of the bottle almost disappears (a soft edge) into the background. The top right side of the bottle is very solid looking (hard edge). To keep the viewer's eye away from the edges, I placed a highlight on the glass to draw the viewer's attention to the bottle. To keep the oil looking liquid-like, I painted very soft golden edges.

Are the edges convincing?

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Tangerine, Ceramic Pot, and Grape

oil on linen on panel / 6x6"/ unframed / sold

How your painting will look framed:

Painting Tangerine, Ceramic Pot and Grape brought back many memories of the Chinese New Year celebrations with my family as a child in our one room home in the back of a Chinese laundry in New York City. Searching for the perfect tangerine to paint reminded me of my mom carefully sorting through the tangerine displays in Chinatown to find the golden orange ones with leaves. Displays of oranges or tangerines in bowls dotted our humble home. Based on Chinese tradition, oranges are symbolic of wealth, and tangerines represent good luck. The tangerine with leaves topped each of my mom's tangerine displays for the new year.

The leaf on tangerine is almost the same value (the lightness or darkness of a color) as the orange reflection of the tangerine in the ceramic pot. To help the leaf come forward, I painted the curled up edges a lighter value and gave it crisp edges.

May I suggest that you complement the viewing of Tangerine, Ceramic Pot, and Grape with my recipe for teedoys, a special treat for the Chinese New Year-the Year of the Dragon, 4710.



Tuesday, January 17, 2012

God Saw...and It Was Good... Ponderings on the Source of Our Creativity



I've been pondering about the source of creativity and what enhances its growth.

Creativity often feels like a river welling up within me. I only know the realness of this power when I'm practicing my craft, painting; but even more so when I haven't painted for a while, when I've been without. I can't go for too long without holding the implements of my craft. Just putting my brush to paint allows the flow of this spirited river. Some of my artists friends have felt this same energy when they cook a special meal, compose a song, write poem, paint a painting, perform a dance, play an instrument, or create a design. They too, have felt out of sorts and are about to burst, when they haven't practiced their craft for a while.

I have had the tremendous honor of repeating this creative process over and over again as a painter. The times when I've been satisfied with what I've painted, I step back from my painting, look at it from different angles and say to myself, This is good.

I feel an intimate relationship with chefs, composers, writers, poets, painters, dancers, musicians, and designers who have shared their talents with me and others by allowing this river to flow through them. Whether I view a museum painting, experience fine dining, read a poem, examine the intricate details of a design, or listen to a symphony; I sometimes say to myself, This is good.  The art has taken my breath away. It has touched my spirit and lingers in my mind. I can't forget it. I want to go back and experience it again and again. The art resonates within me, and I'm willing to purchase it. It lingers in my mind so much that I'm willing to pay a price for it. I say to myself, This is good.

My ponderings on the source of creativity have taken me back to the beginning:
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth... and God saw that it was good... . God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them... . God saw all that He had made, and  behold, it was very good... . (Genesis 1: 1, 25, 26, 31 NASB)
These verses show me a creative and intelligent God who has created me. Since I have been created in His image; I too, have this creativity. He is the source of my creativity. It's really all His. I've also noticed the words used to describe God's observation of His creation each time He completed a part of it, and God saw it was good; and the words of His final observation that punctuates His satisfaction and contentment, God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good when He completed His entire creation. I too, have found myself saying and thinking similar words about my art or the art of others, This is good.

My ponderings on the beginning from Genesis have led me to conclude that ever since the beginning, God hasn't been able to take His eyes off of His creation, me... us. He lingers and stays with me... us. He just can't take His eyes off of me... us; in fact, when Adam and Eve disobey God, He offered mankind redemption in His Son, Jesus. God as a loving, compassionate God who offers His Son as a substitute for our misdeeds—a pardon, freedom:
All of us like sheep have gone astray, Each of us has turned to his own way; But the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him. (Isaiah 53:6 NASB)
When I align myself to God and submit to His plan, I've found the source of my creativity and the power that will enhance its grow.

God can't take His eyes off of what He has created, you... and me. We linger in His mind so much that He was willing to pay a very high price for you... and me. In the same way a patron may pay for my art, God has paid for us, His masterpiece. We... I linger in His mind, and He was willing to pay a very high price for you... me, God saw all that He had made, and  behold, it was very good... .