Wednesday, June 22, 2011


26x17" (diptych of 12x16 panels, with frames), oil and marble dust on canvas panels

For this piece, I decided to use canvases that weren't working and see what I could do with them. It's a fun exercise. You have to separate yourself from the actual content, but still use what you can. So, the earlier painting shows through here in the browns and purples on the left and bottom. But the ghost piece that I like the best is the orange circle on the right. It adds mystery and subtlety.

The other thing that I like -- since I love organic shapes and gestures -- is an area on the far left. I deposited some marble paint and marble dust, with the intention of moving it where I wanted to. Then I went "Eep!", caught myself, and stopped, leaving the paint as I deposited it.

I think this one is going on a wall at home. It's a strange thing, but mostly I don't do that. Do you put up art that you do?

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


 30x40x1.5", oil and burlap on gallery-wrapped canvas

My prior post showed the first version of this painting, which I did with cardboard used for texture. I explained why I swapped in burlap (synopsis: oil and paper don't mix). This is the outcome. What do I think? There's been both loss and gain: It lost was something gestural, something in the moment, something primitive. But it gained a simpler, more compelling, composition. If you want to see the texture up close, you can click it.

And it feels right to have fixed it. In that prior post I debated whether we owe our buyers a painting that could last for generations. Not sure. So, I can't say my decision is right, but it sure feels right. And that's what painting is about for me: Doing what feels right, not what I think is right.

I'm interested in why people make art. Sometimes it's because you have to. Or it's about interpreting what we see. Or creating interesting textures. Or making a political statement. Or because it keeps you sane. Or... For me, I want to put something on canvas that's real, that's from the gut. And it seems to take a mix of head and heart to do that.

I'd love to hear why you paint.