Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Painting a horse

 I've drawn horses before, but I've never drawn *on* a horse.  Here's my daughter painting a horse.  All the kids at the birthday party, about a month ago, took turns.  Quite a canvas. 

Monday, December 19, 2011

Another house portrait

I logged a bunch of drawing hours the past couple of nights, scrambling to get this finished.  Now I’m very tired, but I’m pretty pleased with how this turned out, and happy to be done.  This is 11 x 15 inches, drawn with several brands of disposable and semi-disposable pens, as well as sumi ink and brush.

The second detail I added simply because I enjoy zooming in on an area until it becomes to see it as representational.  However, it does look like a bunch of soldiers with spears headed into battle with a throng of martial artists and dancers.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Latest house portrait

This is my most recent completed drawing, measuring about 8 x 10.  Black walnut ink on paper.

It's not a super reproduction, since I failed to get a good photo or scan of it before it was framed.  This is a photo taken through the glass.

I think it's an attractive little house.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Artist statement, finished, for now

 Here's my first completed artist statement.  I've never before actually completed one to my satisfaction, but I needed to turn one in with my submission to the Mazin Annual Art Exhibition at the Jewish Community Center, so I worked this out as best I could.  It's specific to my pen & ink work.
"I am most satisfied with my art when I use it to document my experiences and explore my environment while also seeking nuance and subtlety in my medium.  I primarily see this exploration as intellectual, as opposed to emotional, though it is based in my sense of wonder and appreciation for nature's beauty.  My favorite subjects are landscapes and old architecture, but I prefer to combine both.  Places and things that have been worn or aged by both nature and humans catch my eye, and I always want to learn the history of the area in which I draw or paint.
"Of art media, I love oil paint, but a few years ago I became curious about making my own black walnut ink. I was quickly drawn into pen & ink.  Almost without intending to, I developed a sideline of drawing house portraits, and recently began working on a series of Louisville landmarks.
"The whole process of working with ink intrigues me; making ink, experimenting with homemade drawing tools, watching how the ink changes as it dries, and building up drawings with layers of pen marks and brush strokes.  Most especially, I love to look at that borderline between the whole work and its component marks--to be far enough away to see the illusion of the whole image, but close enough to see how the illusion is constructed."

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Artist Statement

 I've been working on an artist statement.  It's a struggle. Here's what I have so far:
Of art media, my first love is oil paint, but I started exploring pen & ink a few years ago for reasons of convenience.  I then sort of blundered into a sideline of drawing house portraits, and my appreciation of the medium grew as I began exploring it more earnestly.  I like the whole process: the experimentation of making my own walnut ink and drawing tools, watching how the ink changes as it dries, and working in building up layers.  What I like best, though, is seeing how individual marks and brush strokes build an illusion.  I love to look at that line between the components and the whole, where I can see the parts that are working together.
My favorite subjects are landscapes and old architecture, and I prefer to combine both.  Places and things that have been "worked over" by both humans and nature catch my eye, and I find the history of an area is always worth examining.  My art feels most satisfying to me when it combines the journaling my experiences, exploration of my environment, and experimentation with variety and subtlety of color and line.
I'm sure I'll be changing it in the next few days to get something ready for the Mazin show at JCC.  I welcome any comments.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Falls of the Ohio, beginning and end.

I finished this black walnut ink drawing earlier in the year, but was looking at my sketchbook the other day and I thought it would be fun to post the earliest draft of the drawing alongside the finished product.

The ink drawing is the completed work, about 11 x 14 inches.  The sketch done in pencil is the first thumbnail sketch I did.  It’s about two inches wide.

Friday, November 25, 2011

I got five jars (various sizes) from this batch of walnuts. Now I'll just add a little gum arabic and denatured alcohol, and I'm done.

Making more black walnut ink

Well, I was planning to get some artwork done today, but I've been multiply foiled. So I decided to get that pot of walnuts that's been in the garage for two years and make more black walnut ink.
They've been soaking in water the whole time, and I also added some old screws and nails a while back to see if the rust will help the color.
Two years of soaking is probably excessive, but I just haven't needed more ink. Plus, I've had better things to do. Now I'm home alone and it doesn't matter how bad the kitchen smells. And it does, in fact, smell.
Looks like it will be good ink, though.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Initial post

Well, I decided I'd better start a new blog that is dedicated solely to visual arts and related subjects; I'll do my best to keep out things like what I cooked for dinner or what I'm growing in my garden.