Saturday, December 3, 2011

Good Things

Only when he no longer knows what he is doing does the painter do good things. 

      This Goodreads quote this morning just knocked my socks off.  I don't claim to "do good things" but I sure have fun with my paints and I DO NOT know what I am doing.  Interesting enough, the more I paint and  the more I experiment with technique, color, texture, and tools, the more I like what I do.  When the paper is just taped down and I am standing in front of the whiteness, I simply start in there.  I usually have some idea in my head but where it goes once I start is all new territory.  

      For example, look at the one below, entitled "Mind Doesn't Matter".    Take your choice:  is the content of the box imploding or exploding?   And, in case you were wondering, I don't think the photograph does this painting justice.  The photo cannot convey the boldness and the energy behind the paint......

        Or,  consider something different.  Consider the one on the left below entitled "Broken". Nothing left to say there.  The on on the right is "Bicycle".  Clever title, heh?  This one means a great deal to me.  I painted if about two months after a nasty bike accident that left me healing on the couch for over two months.  I will never forget the sound of my body hitting the windshield of the truck - thump, thump -- twice -- and the realization in my head that, yes, that is the sound of your body bouncing off the truck......

     The next one is stunning, in my humble opinion.  Again, the photo cannot do the painting justice but think winter.  Think starkness.  Think simplicity.  Think tranquility.  That's where I go with this one.

      The next two stand together simply because I like them.  I like the combination of colors and the textures (which are not visible in the painfully insufficient photos).   They have two things in common.  I am drawn to the colors in each of them, though clearly in different ways.  And, secondly, both include a trademark of mine:  walls.  For reasons unknown to me. shades of walls find themselves in so many of my art works.  At one time, I completed a whole series of bold, strong walls.  At one point, a wall was punctured and then the paintings became more like wall fragments.  I still like walls.

       I can now present two that are, at least,  recognizable...... I painted the vase with flowers that you see below on one fine spring day and the bright colors just grab me.  For once, I painted something real, something that other people might be able to understand and yet it still appeals to me.  I know that my paintings don't have to be indiscernible to be attractive to me.  The one on the right below the flowers is an "Ocean View".  No, it's not perfect and, yes, it is full of texture that is not evident in the photo.  I have this one hanging on my office wall as it does remind me to breathe in and feel the serenity that I find at the ocean.  Always a good idea when you are the lifeguard for young teenagers who are floundering in the wicked waves.

     Guess what the blue and redwood brown/red colors below are called?  How about "The Edge"?  I painted this one earlier this fall.  It came to the paper via a vivid night dream (a not uncommon source for my fun with paints).  Below it on the right, is one that might be familiar to you if you were a child who was raised in the Catholic Church.  It is a vivid image in my head and one that was somehow important to paint.

     This is the end of the tour (for now).  I have some more pieces that I want to put up just for fun.  But I have to see how this plays out.  Check out the wheels, rolling away.  There I go.  


  1. You have unintentionally made me overjoyed. Re: the picture that if you are a child of the Catholic Church, you see "something?" I do not! I do not see anything recognizable. Maybe I would have, at one time, but I do not now! Buddha Bless Me. All I "see" is a postage stamp. Does this mean I am getting "better?"
    An eleven-pack of visually epic proportions. Taken singly, or as a unit, your work is stunning. You have every reason to be proud.

  2. You are too kind, Markey. I do have fun with the paints and the process allows me to do something very concrete with images that fill my head.
    and, should i remind you about your Catholic childhood? Do you want to know what I saw?

  3. OMB. Emphatically not. I do not need a repeat of the"rosary disaster," or worse, what happened in Ireland. Speaking of worst. Under de blanket-pillow over de head. That's my version of your demons.

  4. Is it the sliding window door of the confessional?

  5. Oh, there's Bingo? Now there's a reason to go to Church. Let's drink coffee, smoke cigarettes and play Bingo. Maybe we could play Bingo in the confessional, and cover all the bases, or pews, if you prefer, at one time.

  6. As someone whose talent for the "visual arts" begins and ends with my crudely drawn Masked Mom "avatar," I'm a little jealous. As a curious partaker of the arts in all their forms, I'm grateful you shared your talent here. Looking forward to reading/seeing more.

  7. Hi, M and M: No shortage of talent here. We just have to talk JT into sharing. She gave me the one at the top. :)

  8. I thought sebtown294 wrote 'fun in the pants'...
    And a child in the Catholic church? Don't tell mommy what you've seen here... Be sure to clean up thoroughly...
    That said, I do love the angst... (and the vulnerability)

  9. Just goes to show; even the Catholic Church, try as she might [and has] can not always interfere with that 'fun in the pants.' Besides, I attended San Jose State University with sebtown294, in the seventies. I am not sure that Mother Church showed her fuzzy ears around much then. Thank Buddha.

  10. I know next to nothing about art and while I am capable of liking or not liking a painting, I am find myself not really able to explain why. Thank you for walking me through these with your explanations!
    p.s. "like" Particularly the ocean and the wheels.

  11. A family saying, back on Fellowship Street, was "Them thar wheels is going around," but JT will have to share with you the significance of the wheels in her artwork, and I don't think it is the wheel of life. Sumptuous, Pre. Repeat after me, Mark, art is what you get from it, or as Yogi MIGHT have said, "Art is what I see what I ain't looking for it."