Sunday, May 31, 2009

Town Center Art and Wine Festival

I spent yesterday at the Town Center Art and Wine Festival. It was a beautiful day. I have been very lucky with the weather for my May '09 art shows. I have had great sales with my note cards and my hand painted cards. My husband says I should open a business and call it Katsartmark. (Like Hallmark.) I'm just happy with the success of the cards. (I'm even happier with the sales of paintings and prints.) With the economy sales have been slower than last year. Even though I hoped for more I must say I am not surprised.

I have to say I am showed out! For the month of May I have been in the Jerry's Artarama Art Show, the Gosport Art Show, the CBAA Spring Art Show, the Pagoda Art Show and the Town Center Art Show. Was I crazy when I decided to be in so many shows? Why do they offer so many shows in May and so few in June, July and August? I have been in a show mode where I spend a great deal of time preparing for the shows as well as working them. I must say I am happy with the shows I did but I am really looking forward to a little break.

I want to reorganize my art studio. It is in such a state of disarray. The process of reorganization can be a predecessor to the artistic experience.

I want to get back into a good schedule of painting. This is the structure that allows me the freedom to soar.

I need to express myself artistically. To energize my self with creation. I have so many ideas of things to work on that I don't even know where to begin. But I will begin. And I will sort things out and assemble them in new ways. And I will produce new paintings. Some of which I will love.
It is a wonderful life being an artist. And I love it!!!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Oil Painting

I was in the Art Show at the Norfolk Pagoda last Sunday. It was a great day. The weather was nice and so were the people. I sold over 100 note cards with prints of my paintings on them!
I spent time talking with a few of my artist friends about art, and painting and sales and marketing and business and grants and galleries and all the other things that artists talk about.
Recently I have been thinking about doing some oil painting again. For the past 4 or 5 months I've been working primarily in watercolors. And I love it. But oils are calling my name.
The Dragonfly and Blue Dragonfly are two oil paintings of mine. I really enjoyed painting them. When I paint in oils they seem to come easy for me and if I don't like what's happening in the painting then I wipe it off and/or cover it up and correct my "errors". Sounds like a piece of cake. But there are challenges in my oil painting. In the two Dragonfly's the challenge was to make them transparent. So that you can see through the wings. I think I accomplished that.
In watercolors I have taken many classes and read books and articles and planned the teaching of classes. I have done exercises and painted many paintings, many of which I have filed in the trash. When I complete a painting that I am pleased with, I really feel a sense of satisfaction.
In oils I really have very little formal training. I took classes from Dorothy Raxter for many years. Her classes were open sessions that you worked on your paintings and if you needed assistance she was there to give it to you. But you developed your paintings and your way of painting on your own. Oils come more naturally to me but they do not provide me with the same satisfaction that watercolors do.
But I do have a couple of ideas in the back of my mind of things that I'd like to paint in oil. Maybe someday soon?
Tommorrow I will be at Virignia Beach Town Center. My tent is on the corner on the Ruth's Chris side of the fountain. Hope to see you there.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Ocean Wave

Here is my painting of an Ocean Wave that is hanging in the Gallery at East Beach with the CBAA's spring show.

This is a simple painting that I did relatively quickly. I enjoy the movement and the power of it. And of course the colors. It was alot of fun to paint.

I am a color painter. I work hard and try to be a value painter but my use of colors comes naturally, without any effort. My color usage almost always dominates my paintings. Sometimes I limit the colors I use in a painting like I did in this one. I love to mix my colors and come up with all the possible variations. When I look at paintings I am usually effected by the color usage immediately after the subject matter. The use of color really says alot about a painting. It conveys mood, temperature and message as well as the overall feeling of the painting. The use of color is alot of fun.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Gallery at East Beach

Last night the CBAA had the reception for their spring show at the Gallery at East Beach, Norfolk, VA. (This is me standing next to my painting of an Ocean Wave.)
It is a wonderful show with some great art work. If you have the chance, go to see it.
The Creative Arts of Tidewater had three winners!!! Pam Hill won 3rd place with Tree of Knowledge, Terry Brunner won Honorable Mention with The Storyteller and Mary Kay Holladay won Honorable Mention with Oriental Poppies. I am so proud of all three of them and I think it says alot about the CATS group. We have nine members and we have alot of talent. Look out world; here we come.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Trees in the Morning

I want to congratulate my niece Kerri and her new husband Brent on their wedding vows that they took yesterday. Kerri is a very special young woman in our family. She is loved by everyone and we have taken Brent into our love along side of her. We wish her and Brent a wonderful lifelong journey together.

I had decided to give them a painting as a wedding gift and I had the hardest time deciding which to choose. Then when I took out "Trees in the Morning" I knew it was the perfect painting.

The morning sun gives the promise of a new day as their wedding day promises them their life together. I believe it is bright with the
excitement of their youth and peaceful with the serenity of their later years. The colors of the foliage are rich with organic growth as their lives will grow together. It is a gift of love, peace and freedom to go into the world together and create the lives that they will. And they will.....

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Central Park

I actually painted this painting twice. The first one I sold about a year ago. In this version I tried some new things.

First of all I did it on hot pressed paper. I usually work on cold pressed paper. Hot pressed paper is very smooth and does not absorb the paint as much. There are more back runs or blossoms and the paint dries faster. But it gives a smooth surface that I wanted to achieve for the ice cold water.

The next thing I did was limit my color pallette to only three colors, paynes grey, davy's grey and burnt umber to achieve the feeling of the cold temperature.

Over the last two weeks I taught my "Tricks" class in beginning watercolors. In this class I demonstrate different ways of creating textures and effects often with non-painting substances. For example after laying in a wash of color you sprinkle a little salt and little star shapes appear in the paint. It is always a fun class and people usually choose some tricks to enter into their repertoire of tools for painting.

In Central Park I have used three tricks. If you are one of the first two people who can guess what they are, I will give you a print of the painting. You need to write the three tricks used in the comments section below. You are not elligible if I have already told you the answer. This is for people in the continental United States only.

So good luck with this little contest and hope to hear from you soon.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Gosport Art Festival

Being in the Gosport Art Festival was a great experience. We were fortunate with the weather. It was very hot and windy on Saturday but alas it did not rain. Then Sunday, Mother's Day, was exquisite, warm and sunny with gentle breezes. A tribute to my mom and everyone elses.

The setting was beautiful. Olde Town Portsmouth. Historic buildings with cobblestone sidewalks and beautiful gardens with climbing rose bushes. I was in front of the famous Commodore Theater. During the weekend I often wished I was there to paint as the scenery was so magnificent.

I also was inspired to capture the sun going through a woman's straw hat and gently landing on her shoulders and chest.

Communication is a large part of creating art. I feel that it is like breathing in and breathing out. Taking things in from the world and processing them and then expressing them in your form of art. Your art is a part of your inner self that you are giving back to the world to experience.

I am very thankful for all the compliments and comments shared with me by the viewers of my art work and I enjoy conversing with them. It is a form of recognition for the work I have done. When someone buys a piece of art it is the ultimate compliment. And I am very thankful.

Some of the artists did very well with sales and others did not. This varies from show to show. One artist may do very well in one venue and another in a different setting. We all know this but when we do not do well with our sales, we are more than just disappointed we feel that our art has not been accepted by the viewers. Then we are taken by surprise with a comment or a sale that takes our breath away. It is part of the cycle of our art.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Jerry's Artarama's Spring Art Show May 2009

The Spring Art Show at Jerry's Artarama, organized by the Creative Arts of Tidewater was a great way to spend the weekend. The staff at Jerry's was wonderful as usual and the other artists were very supportive of each other. I really enjoyed the Art Show.

I want to thank all of my students, blog readers, friends and family who came to the show. I appreciate your support and it is always nice to see you and to share my art work with you.

Now I'm getting ready for the Gosport Art Festival in Olde Town Portsmouth next weekend. I sure hope it does not storm!