Saturday, May 13, 2017

Realms of Uncertainty

The previously mentioned ten new paintings for my show in Prescott, Arizona, are completed. In between, I made three others so don't mind me if I pat myself on the back for being diligently productive. Making lots of paintings doesn't necessarily mean they're all good, it just means I'm a work horse and love what I do. Okay, I'm a bona fide workaholic.

With a totally new and different body of work, I'm encountering the fears of "what if?" Michael and I are traveling a very long distance to test the waters of will they/won't they like my new subject. His assurance of "we need a vacation anyway" is not cutting it for me. I remain optimistic but it's forced. If only I possessed the bravado of a male painter, I'd be bragging that I'm going to kick ass. YEAH!

Ironically, a dear friend is in Prescott as I type. She's meeting with another mutual friend at the Phippen Museum! I should take this as a positive omen, as I don't believe in coincidence. Here's your sign!

I have a little over a week to get ready. I'm varnishing - he's framing. As a seasoned traveler, I can pack in a few hours and that means I have lots of time to fill with...something. The upcoming week promises warm spring temps so I've decided it's a good time to occupy the "runaway freight train" with plein air painting. Or I can always clean the studio.

These two paintings are waiting to be professionally shot. Quick cell pics in the studio. Here's the finished #10:

...and to be used as my full-page ad for this summer's Hall of Fame guide:
The text will fit nicely in the track foreground at the bottom.

* * *

Fear is always triggered by creativity, because creativity asks you to enter into realms of uncertain outcome - Elizabeth Gilbert

Couldn't have said it better myself...

Monday, May 01, 2017

Fulfilling a Promise to Myself

I'm in the "one more painting" syndrome. With my first western-themed show looming at the end of the month, I'm anxious for it to be a positive barometer of my recent efforts. My enjoyment in tackling this new subject has been a delight.

Having this conversation several times with Michael, I've definitely come full circle. Mentioning it often on this blog - the disillusionment, disappointment and utter boredom with my art career and blaming it squarely on the current affairs of horse racing.

I'll never leave it. It's a blood thing and I'm very okay with that. In fact, it's a relief to finally accept the changes and quit whining. Hey, the Kentucky Derby is next week for goodness' sake!

Backtracking, 16"x20", oil on panel. More info here.
Interspersed with the Indian Relay and other western paintings was this one above (of my favorite place in the world, the Oklahoma stable area), followed by a portrait painted of the soon-to-be-inducted into the Racing Hall of Fame, Good Night Shirt, and now I'm planning another racing piece for a full-page magazine ad due before my trip.

Good Night Shirt, 20"x16", oil on canvas
More info here
To my critics who say that I'm just jumping on the successful bandwagon of western art, I say: you're right. I came around to it through my intense excitement and inspiration born from the Indian Relay races. It's still horse racing.

Speaking of bandwagons, I did the same jump with plein air painting but I didn't fall in love with it. I find the competitions nerve-wracking and most of the artwork a snooze, especially my own. I did, however, learn a lot of technical skills I was in need of and will continue to go outside and paint.

A few short months ago I declared to myself that I would have ten pieces ready for my show in Prescott, AZ on Memorial Day Weekend. I'm working on my tenth.

Life brings us on a journey to interesting places...especially if we ask it to.