Thursday, November 29, 2012

A snapshot

I'm sitting in my office/study/spare bedroom/computer room and I'm browsing Tumbler for abstract art. I will download some of it and store it away in  my Art folder. That folder contains contains over 5,000 images. I also have a Music folder that is 2.5 Gigabytes in size. I have no idea as to the number of individual files as I have them all arranged by genre in sub folders. I also have another Image folder that is filled with sub folders and it is over 4GB in size. Want to see an ad for a Goodyear tire from the year 1923? I've got it! All of this is my Asperger's Syndrome hard at work. Sure it's 'work', but I love doing it! (and I really can't  stop...I've tried)

Boo the Magical Cat has just made a dash through the house and is now sitting in the window next to me. She is intent...on what? Humans will never know. She had been outside perhaps five minutes ago and had wanted back in almost immediately. That's her routine now; sit at the door until I open it so that she can stick her nose out. If all seems satisfactory to her nose, she ventures out and sits about five feet away, She turns and looks at me as if she wants to make sure I haven't abandoned her. A minute later and she is at the door, wanting in. Now this is a cat that used to hunt in the barn next to us when we lived in Orland. She was fearless and would stay outside night and day if we let her. I used to bring her in before we went to bed because there were coyotes and raccoon's prowling at night. There was even the threat of Barn Owls; they could easily grab a cat her size. But as soon as we moved to the city she became a changed kitty. She loves to sleep and hide under the furniture, something she never would have done before the move. Is Cat Psychotherapy in the future for her??

Yesterday, I spent the morning with my artist friends as I do every Tuesday. We paint or draw or simply talk to one another. Intellectuals are hard to find and so I treasure my Tuesday morning friends. The majority of these artists work in watercolor and three of them are fine artists, working on commissions and selling work at local galleries. A few of us work in acrylics; I'm the only abstract artist among the 8 of us. I've sold a few painting during the past three years. One went for $75 and the others, smaller, were in the $30 range.

I'm doing most of my work at home in my garage studio. I'm using 5/16" MDF for my supports and I cut and glue integral wood frames to the backside of them. They look like a normal canvas after I'm through putting two coats of gesso on them. And all done quite cheaply. I've read that the MDF can be archival quality if it's prepared correctly and more and more artists are using it now. I do put a coat of enamel on the backside so that the 'canvas' is protected from humidity. I also use a palm sander to finish sanding the wood frame and edge of the MDF so they look integrated.

I have a show in March at a local sports club and I'm busy putting frames on paintings where I hadn't framed them before painting on them. My bad. I don't expect a lot of sales from this show as I have shown here before along with my friends. The patrons of the sports club are not abstract lovers; but it is a chance for my name to be seen and who knows? maybe someone will tell someone who will tell another, etc, etc. I think what I'm looking for is acceptance by the local art community. Being an abstract artist doesn't always win friends. Yet, I can't paint any other way. Famous abstract painters; Gerhard Richter's work is awesome. So is the work of Cy Twombly, Gerard Stricher, DeKooning, Helen Frankenthaler, Mary Heilman, Mark Rothko and Jackson Pollock. And many more. I FEEL their paintings. They don't talk to me; they shout!

It's getting darker outside as the storm approaches. The wind is really whipping the trees and the first sprinkles of rain have made an appearance. This is the second storm in a series of 5? storms that are due to hit us here in the north state. Unfortunately, these are warm storms and the snow level will be quite high. We really need a decent snowpack if we are going to avert another dry year in the current drought. Global warming? You bet! I was believer from the beginning.


  1. I wonder how long particle board will last if painted on all surfaces. I painted a picture on a scap piece recently. I can't resist painting on any available surface. I painted on cardboard when I was a kid.

  2. I imagine that painted particle board will last longer than you or I. Like you, I will paint on anything. I have a large piece (5'x4') of cardboard that I am waiting for inspiration before I put a brush to it. A well known (locally) artist did a series on cardboard where she used a box cutter to cut away the top layer in the patterns she wanted, revealing the corrugated inner surface. When painted and finished, they were striking.

  3. Sometimes I'll find a painting at a yard sale with a nice frame. I'll buy it for a couple of dollars, take the frame off, gesso over the painting, paint my own picture, then put the frame back on. A very inexpensive way to get a canvas and frame. I hope I haven't painted over a rare Picasso.