48 x 48" Brave New World
Yesterday I stood behind fifteen people in line at my local post office just to buy the new American Expressionist stamps. When I got to the counter and told the clerk what I wanted to purchase I had to further explain that they were art stamps that were released today. He stared blankly back at me for a few seconds and said, "art stamps?" I said, "yes, they came out today." And smiled back at him. He lifted an assortment of papers around his area then said, "hmm, let me go check." He went into a side door and, leaving it open, I heard him yell out, "do we have any art stamps??" I could overhear a few words of a conversation and some movement of boxes then he came back with a few sheets in his hands and a big smile on his face and said, "yes, here they are!"
Speaking of big smiles tonight from 6 - 9pm is the opening reception for the 1st Annual Member's Art Exhibition at Hollingsworth Gallery and I have three pieces in the show! This is the first time I've been in an art show since 1994 and my first ever associated with a gallery. I can feel the slate under my feet of this wonderfully cosmic stepping stone.
And I took a few more steps forward in my art journey this week (above painting). As in all trails the path is never a straight line and I feel like I've been leaving little yellow pieces of cloth tied to the tree branches of my life to help lead me to this point. After preparing the canvas with a textured surface and carefully adding marks in the ground I kept looking at my watch and I was long overdue to get home and let my dog out. While I was packing & cleaning up my stuff I picked up my hours-old, half full open bottle of diet snapple iced tea and thought, "wait a minute, can I use this as a stain on my surface?" I loved the color and want to learn how to make my landscapes have an organic look and feel so I ran over to the gallery to ask my instructor/gallery owner, piled high in paperwork, about it. He seemed happy to take a break while replying, "Well, let's give it a try!"
So he joined me as I poured the tea right out of the bottle over portions of the surface and immediately let out an, "ooooh." It held such a subtle yet compelling feel and I made a note to test this again on a smaller painting. Then I experimented with other available liquids including acrylic paint and while I wanted to keep at now I was reeally late and had to dash home and tend to Lucy.
When I returned to the studio the next day I loved it, as did others. Sometimes you just have to go with your instincts and see where it leads. And sometimes, it will return the favor with a nice surprise. Java!