Monday, June 30, 2008

My Next Hands Piece

I'm starting another Hands piece, based on some photos that I set up and shot of my own hands. I am doing this piece on another type of Rtistx panel, the 420 series, which is designed for watercolor. I am going to do an underpainting using Neocolor II watersoluble pastel crayons, and then go over the piece with colored pencil. In the first progress photo shown here, you can see my initial sketch and I have applied neocolor pastels to the entire piece, using white and light blue for the background. In the second photo, I have applied water to the piece, letting the colors blend together. I am not worrying about detail at this point, as I will be covering much of the piece with colored pencil. The bright colors will also be significantly subdued, once the pencil is added.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Realizing What is Valuable

Over the past week or so I haven’t posted any blog entries because I have been spending most of my workday doing commissions, and because I have been preoccupied with the idea of moving. My husband and I have always casually discussed looking for a house with a little more room and other nice-to -haves, but recently we realized that we could have these extras just by moving a little farther from the city or the ocean. So we spent hours and hours searching through real estate websites, talking to agents, and driving around potential new neighborhoods to find the perfect new home in our price range. In addition, we cleaned out the basement and closets in an effort to streamline our belongings and prepare our house for a showing. Interestingly enough, all of this work helped bring me to the realization that I love my current home, and it also strengthened my passion for my career as an artist.

While I was going through boxes and crates of old stuff looking for things to toss or donate and things to save, I noticed that I was keeping things that were tied to memories, not necessarily things that had cost me more money. This made me think of my product as a portrait artist, which also evokes memories, and how my goal is to create a special keepsake that can be passed on for generations.

Similarly, when I visited larger, newer homes with “upgrades” from my current home, I felt that they were somehow colder, and lacked that special “homey” feel. I finally realized that this was because they lacked the memories of my current home, and because they weren’t as close to the places I have come to love.

So I am staying put, but with a renewed appreciation for my home, and even more passion for my career as a portrait artist.