Julian, my son, has been my model for many years. He really didn't have a lot of options: forced servitude I suppose. He has modeled for classes that I have given in anatomy or portraiture and he's learned to be a very good model. I guess it's really not so difficult to just hold still. He is currently partnering with my husband in a marketing company so he returned to our home after being away for a year or so. This has been a great coo for me. I always love being around my children, so it's been a great time working with him again. This digital pastel is an out line for a painting.
This pose is inspired from a photograph of Rudolf Nureyev, a Russian Ballet Dancer, as he posed for a beautiful black and white photo. The photo is quite beautiful, but I love color. So Julian posed and we worked out the light as it passed through the jungle leaves. It was very inspiring and great to draw.
What inspires a new piece? What inspires me to design the look that I want to create? Well, for example this piece was inspired by a stunning muscular pose. I love drawing expression in a face, but I also really love the musculature in the human body. Then for me, I wanted to pump that up with lighting and reflection. I have been working with the Mayan frame around it which would reflect red onto the skin. Only experience allows me to imagine how that would look.
On on my YouTube channel I am starting a new series to teach artistic expression and how to customize your inspiration. Check out the digital videos there and see how this piece was illustrated. Thanks for watching an follow me on YouTube.
Ai Weiwei is a Chinese Installation Artist that bravely expresses his political opinions through his art installations. I am very inspired by his bravery as a Chinese artist, but also that his installations have sparked conversation more than controversy. His newest installation to be finished in New York City this summer is called " Goof Fences make Good Neighbors" and it's his reflection on boarders and our antiquated concept of who's allowed to go where and who's not allowed to go where. I will make sure I see his artistic interpretation. This man and many others inspire me to be bold and fearless in my fine art views.
As I spend more time in the Riviera Maya, Mexico, I am enveloped by the local lore and spirituality. The Jaguar is such a spiritually respected being that is seen here from time to time. They are said to be fairly fearless, but stay away from humans and habitations. In the Mayan tradition they are the king of this jungle, illusive and mysterious. I've been working on a small series of Jaguars and here is one. Enjoy.
It has been a busy few months launching a large cross marketing business in Mexico called I Survived Mexico. An amazing company that markets Mexico to English speaking countries. Mexico is so much more than tacos and tequila. There is amazing beauty, culture and tropical miracles daily. The image of Mexico as a dangerous, dirty, 3rd world country is so false. So, my job was to express the beauty and vision of Mexico that most people don't see in the reality of their world. So, that launches March 15th and then Ill be preparing for work to do in New York. Life is an amazing journey.
8 Days in bed with the flu. I really haven't been that sick in a long time; a forced vacation of torture. Just when I have a ton of work, along comes a little inconvenience. So today, I'm back to the drawing board. I did have a week to watch lots of art videos and movies about Frida and Degas and Picasso and watch Monet paint in his gardens. i also realized that I shouldn't paint when I'm sick. I have read that Frida and many artists would fast for many days till they were hallucinogenic in their thoughts and then paint. That didn't work for me and have retracted pieces that I posted...it was unsuccessful for me. So now that I'm reasonably better, I'm excited to take my newly cleared head back to the blank white canvas, paper and my ipad...after I go out for some sun.
Life has been quite busy. I'm bringing on a new team to keep me current with social media and allow me time to work work work. Everyday I don't feel quite right unless I paint or create. Creating is a wide range of work. Oil painting, pastels, digital video, commercial work for our families coffee company or marketing firms. Yep, I do commercial as well. My responce to those judge mental eyes is...many famous artists were commercial artist. Alphonse Moucha, Toulouse-Lautrec, Erte and even Keith Hering. Every artist has to pay the rent. I started as an airbrush illustrator then was hired as an artist for glass carving. That art form kept me busy for 20 years. I did work in hundreds of homes and business' including Madison Square Garden, IBM, The NYC Hilton and The Historic Apollo Theater. It's been a jourey and a daily advenure.
0 Comments Big Love5/25/2016
This video shows the layering of colors most people would not use, however, this is an under painting. Depending on lighting and a skin cast, some people throw off a blue color, or green or purple. This is not necessarily seen in the end product, but this demonstration shows how that can be used to "pop" a color with an alternate color on the color wheel. I love to use reds, purples and blues. I rarely use green, but the colors were being thrown there as reflections of the tropical jungle behind me reflected onto him. enjoy...more are coming and finished pieces will be available for purchase via a secured technology which allows the purchase to be only once and unique.
Life and art change every day. If we do not move with it, we will be left behind in antiquated process'. Don't get me wrong, traditional painting is what makes any illustrator so much better. The information that you learn from blending color with a pastel stick or a paint brush with oils is not replaceable, yet. The reminiscent smell of turpentine and oils, solvents and linseed oil will have to be a perfume that we purchase in the future. Until that day, I will enjoy ruining my cloths and nails, accidentally dipping my brush in my coffee rather than my turpentine, and hating my work that day , washing it with mineral spirit and starting another day with a new vision and clean brushes.
0 Comments May 19th, 20165/19/2016
My Muse Returns Home for a Visit My son, Julian, came home for a short visit. If you follow my work you know he has been my model ( out of necessity) for many years. He has been seriously ill for most of his life and was stuck home with me while all the others were out doing things he couldn't. This allowed me to indulge all my attention on him and gave him a job...to hold still. He is my Budha Child who is calm and fine with holding still as we chat and I draw.
This also allowed me to spend more time on a few new ipad apps that I have been learning and enjoying. One is called ArtStudio and the other is Procreate. Its actually been amazing to apply fine art pastel and watercolor techniques to a computer based application. I have rejected the computer since my first career ( air brush illustrating) was devastated by computer graphics. So i rejected even looking in the direction of the computer. My personal style tends to be more edgy for a pastel artist, so this process has been pretty interesting. The filming opportunity within the applications just really shows the process . I will keep pushing into it, but i just can't stop painting.
0 Comments February 11th, 20162/11/2016
I had a great catch up conversation with an old painting friend, Allen Stamper. This is a pastel sketch of a our Model, "Julie", she was the muse for many pieces I did including "julie with a lime". Its important for artists to keep in touch, support and inspire each other. I met many artists when I was painting on Oahu and Kauai. They were all so darn calm. It never quite took for me. How I work and the color I use is contrary to many artists, I know. I'm a bit more static. When I work in my studio, I listen to loud music, lots of Punk, Rock and Roll and Rap. It is contrary to my friends who drink wine and listen to Beethoven or Chopin. Music is my caffeine, a direct instigation into my creative core. I also do NT work well under the influence of anything other than music. I learned that in Hawaii. I loose concentration and get tired.
I DO listen to Bach and Beethoven when I paint landscapes....hmm. I don't do too many landscapes. I do LOVE color and all that they instigate. Color inspires energy, calm, love, fear, comfort and a whole myriad of emotions, as does music.
Art, Music, dancing, cooking, knitting, making sandcastles and all that we do from our creative mind require a catalyst. It requires inspiration to get that which is in our minds eye out. To do this as a career requires a special talent to tap into that inspiration, daily. For me, it's music with a very club type beat. It keeps me painting at a pace. 6-9 hours go by and I haven't taken a break. That's love.
0 Comments Stuart Thurston Pork, Esq8/29/2015
Sturat Pork, Esq..."Egor"
Well, Egor is about ready to publish. This is the part where I take him to be photographed. This piece and two others will be entered into the Pastel Journals competition on Sept 1st. Ill take it to my trusted photographer, Jack Rybak. If the picture is lit well I can use it to create giclee prints and other items. It also allows me to post my pieces in shows at a high resolution all over the world.
"Egor's Story": Well Egor was going along and it has some complicated problems to solve with in it with the figures position, with the complicated lighting exposure, and my original idea of putting a mandala behind him, had cause an issue where I needed to "reground" to hold the pastel in an area. In the end, as I studied it for details, I felt it was not right and I wanted to enter a piece that I felt was as perfect as I am capable of producing. With a time restraint (as many artists have with portraits or commissions) and a serious solution to create...I needed to stop for a few days and think. I took the background down to the base of the sanded Wallis paper by washing and even scraping up the "re ground". This is nerve wracking, BUT I refused to submit a piece I felt was not technically correct. Then my solution was to keep the background dark and pop the graffiti a little. My husband and members of my family who had seen the progress were sure I had destroyed it. I wasn't sure that I hadn't, but I did feel confident in my concept to recover.
I show the progress on the "Progress" page. This piece took about two months while I worked on other pieces. My model, is a young antsy guy, so holding a position for any period of time is fairly tough. SO I worked from short sessions and a few photos. It's hard to work with fidgety models, but this subject is dear to my heart and worth the struggle.
This topic is a little edgier than I believe they are used to, so not sure how it will be received. They are used to traditional landscapes, and still life's and conservative topics. In the meantime...I had a blast doing it and I'm doing a whole collection on this and other "Writers" over the next few years. Wish me luck!
0 Comments Future SHows...8/6/2015
Although my last few shows have been odd and a learning experience in showing in Mexico, I am pressing on. I have and always do enter international "competitions" to keep my eye sharp and see who's out there. I am always impressed with other artists who reach a certain level and get that insecure voice that ALL artists have ( no matter what they say), 'am I good enough?'
I realize it's all relative and it keeps me constantly reinventing, becoming re-inspired by other artists, by their enthusiasm and their visions. I have never been an abstract artist. It requires specific understanding of color and color theories. Oddly, this is the direction I have always been going as a pastel artist. Color. Color expresses so much. People ask why I use red so much. I don't know. I LOVE red. It's passionate, it's angry, it's complimentary on all levels. I reject yellow. why? I don't know. I just rarely use yellow. I have been working toward it. I have very few fears...very few. My theory of fear is to charge it and you realize it's usually all in your mind. Yellow....it's all in my mind. Now, I'm not "afraid" of yellow, but it challenges my perception of visual sophistication. My current work in oils, approaches primaries and their place on my palette.
Yellow and Blue:
0 Comments Onward7/13/2015
July is chalk full of shows. At the end of this month I will be doing a live demo and showing at the Café Sophia shopping mall. I and 11 other artists will be showing there for the evening of July 30th. Then the work will stay on display for 1 week. This is an introduction to an art association which I am starting with my friend Jackie Cole: "The Art Association or the Riviera Maya". I will be so happy to be there with my newest art friend Male and an art associate from New York, Stuart Pork, who is a successful graffiti writer in NY, Hawaii, California, Miami and in Mexico. He will also be doing a live demo on canvas' that will be put on sale that night.
I also have a competition which I am hoping to be chosen to compete. The amazing artists of the Riviera Maya will compete to be chosen for an exclusive show at Maroma. There will be a juror and places chosen. I am excited to meet other artists in the area that I do not already know. The two pieces below are the pieces entered to be chosen. The show awards ceremony will be July 25th and the show will be up till August 31st.
So...July is hoping!
0 Comments June 26th, 20156/26/2015
Paris in the Springtime.
It was a dream...for me. all those pieces that I studied in Art History and all those artists I respected were there. Yes I grew up near the Metropolitan, The Guggenheim, MOMA...all the amazing museums in NYC But these works were new to me, only seen in books and pictures. I was so happy spending everyday just looking at them. Looking at their brush strokes, their techniques, their concept of completion. Very Amazing to me and if I never go anywhere again, I will have considered my life an amazing journey.
Perhaps I will go back soon. Certainly if I can go every year I will. It will be my touchstone. It also helps me to look at my familiar works in NYC and process them all together in my mental file. Opportunities to sketch
The statues, the sculptures and the colors and color theory gave me such inspiration. I bought some supplies and went straight to sketching the statuary in the Greek and Roman wings and outdoor pavilions. Endless opportunities. Not enough time in the day. One particular fellow had a pretty funny smirk on his face...I sketched him and then pastel sketched him twice. The Mona Lisa has that same smirk...that knowing look. Other opportunities were on the streets themselves. People, architecture, fountains and the River ...amazing inspirations are all around the city.
0 Comments New Show at Soho Hotel5/20/2015
Playa Del Carmen, June 4th. A new show with friends and collaborators in the PDC area. We are joining to form a new Non profit in the area to support the art community here. This will be attended by the founding members to promote arts in the Riviera Maya. Join us if your in the neighborhood. June 4th, opening night will have the artist and a live graffiti exposition, along with refreshments and music.
I hope you can join me...summers sizzling in. Hot summer days and cool drinks in the evening.
04:46=My life theoryA life with out challenges makes for a dull outcome. My challenges have really defined me.
"Art is not what you see, but what you make others see" Edgar Degas