Thursday, April 24, 2008

Found Art Tuesday 4-22-08: Kindness

I thought that I would make a high quality print of this newly finished work for the found art theme of kindness. This is the thrid in the Virtue in Rhyme Series: Goodwill Doth Impart. As I was getting close to finishing it on Tuesday, I thought this woudl do the trick for kindness. I plan on printing the image, signing it (my name will be barely legible) and then include a bit of an explanation of how the work evolved. That is quite a bit more than I do for most found art projects, but I could not resist making a nice print of it.

The work needs to be varnished and then it will be framed, final size is 8 by 10. This will be in my gallery show starting May 29th. I have one more work in this series and then my little poem will be completed. The Virtues I chose to represent were peace, hope, goodwill, and faith. Meanwhile, I hve started another ballet fairy, the Snow Queen from the Nutcracker. I hope to have her finished before mid May. It would be nice to have a few more works done. That gallery has three rather large walls!


Sunday, April 13, 2008

Lean on Me: a work of love

I finished the work for the Pink Ribbon Ladies fund raiser. It has been varnished and I am waiting for it to "cure" before I release it into the world. Strange, I feel like the work is a child of mine. There was some tension as I was working through the composition and the first stages of the painting/collage. But then the work started taking on a life of its own and happily I was able to bring it to its finished stage. I think I have been able to translate my feelings into the work so in my mind, I am happy with it. You see, I have two friends, who are the best of friends, that were an inspiration for the work. The broader emotions and sentiments are geared toward women's friendships (as I described below) but as I continued to work on this piece, I realized that these two women are Michelle and Jean. Funny how things like that happen, how your subconscious is always working overtime. Michelle is Jean's best friend. As long as I have known them, they have always been there for one another. Each leads a busy life...a typical American family life, each with children, each with a home, each with a strong faith...always there for one another as their children grow, always there for one another as each struggles with their own demons, always there. And then something happens that makes that friendship stronger, that makes that friendship precious and now not taken for granted, something that brings each closer to God...Breast cancer strikes. It does not discriminate...especially if it runs in your family. Although this cancer had the potential to rip their friendship apart, it did not win. Jean has recovered from this cancer but her journey was long and still continues. Her bright eyes tell a story of strength and weakness, of triumphs and failures, of lost faith and hope, of hate and love...and Michelle was there for her, holding her hand, crying, cleaning, cooking, listening, and loving. I guess their story affected me in more ways than I understand. How could I not be influenced by such a strong friendship. I am grateful to Michelle for this opportunity to search my soul for inspiration and for translating that to the "canvas." What a powerful exercise. I feel that in my own, small insignificant way, that I have contributed to a worthy endeavor. I hope and pray that we find a cure....
God bless you both, your courage, love, and friendship have shown me what is truly important. I hope I can slow down and be a friend once again....

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Found Art TUesday for 4-8-08- Sending out a good message

A little late, but in before the next found art topic! Well I have had this sort of theme in my head for some time. You know that commercial for Target where they show clips of people doing thing together and just being together. There is a song playing with the words that repeat over and over: We're all in this together." Anyway I could not get those words out of my head. It is true on many levels, is it not...we are all here sharing this magnificent Earth. All races, all countries share the same planet. I had this picture of my Mom (on the left) and some of her friends. I thought it might be perfect for these words. This literally took seconds to do. I painted over an old ATC that I never liked much and gave it new life. As for where I will leave it...?????
On another note, I am just about finished with my soon to be donated piece. I used the words "We are in this together." So you see...the saying has been with me for a while and this just shows how persuasive advertising is....Although they did not get me to go shopping at Target :))))
PS. Thank you for your kind comments on the work below. I am pleased with the outcome and I am letting it sit for a day or two before I varnish it :)

Sunday, April 06, 2008

A work of Hope and Love for Michelle.

Not too long ago I was asked by a good friend to donate a piece of work for a breast cancer fund raiser. She is part of a walking group called the Pink Ribbon Angels. These ladies are mostly members of our Church, The Church of Holy Apostles, in McHenry Illinois and their lives have all been touched in some deeply personal way by breast cancer. These dedicated and loving ladies walk in the Avon Breast Cancer Walk every year. Last year, was the first year that I donated a piece ("HOPE") and I was so very moved by the process. It seems that whenever I work on a piece that is given from my heart, well somehow I get so totally wrapped up in it. All I can do is think about what or how I will depict what I am feeling, I dream about how the work will look, I search for poignant words to add to the work, and on and on. Then I fret over how the work will be received, will any one bid on it, will it actually raise some money that is so desperately needed to find a cure, am I just fooling myself into thinking someone would actually like the work enought to bid on it, will it relate to anyone? Is it just me or do all artists feel like this? Am I that Insecure?

I decided to post the work in progress so perhaps Michelle will take a little peek. I think that this is against my better judgement mainly because the work is still evolving. I decided to use a theme of friendship.. The work is about how we as women stick together, what friends do for each other especially in times of need, support, love, and understanding. Something that women tend to do better than men is be there to support one another.

The work is done on a prepared piece of masonite called gesso board. This is the first time I have worked on masonite and I will really like it. I probably will not frame it but rather have it displayed on one of these mini easels. The board is about a quarter inch thick. The work is a mixed media and collage piece. I actually used a variety of napkins and altered magazine clippings, text from books etc... for the backgound. Acrylics, oil pastels, inks, and graphite were used to give the effect you see. A brayer was used to apply the acylic paint (I only use Golden paints because I adore the rich pigments). I hope you like the work thus far, Michelle.