Revising History’ Artist Statement   “He hated confronting those lost moments, being presented with some detail from his past and having to look on it like a stranger. It made his life feel like a made-up thing.” — from Michael Crummey's ‘Sweetland’ Reading these lines led me to explore the concept of memory reliability, the lives we construct, and alternate realities, resulting in my series ‘A Made-Up Life’—meshing perfectly with this show’s theme. The photos used in this series date to the late 1800s and come from my husband’s aunt, keeper of the family’s genealogy. These characters were often identified with little more than a first name or nickname and are unknown to us, making them ripe to be used in stories. I placed these figures on new landscapes, or isolated them all together, and also used original photos in assemblage pieces, creating a juxtaposition between memory and reality. Jen Worden is a self-taught mixed-media assemblage artist who makes Wentzell Lake, Nova Sc...
ART2LIFE WORKSHOP - 2022 Day 2 - VALUE Gah. My brain was overflowing, hemorrhaging, last night as I tried to process all the information I'd glommed onto. So I pushed today's lesson to Noon and continued working on my show pieces while I thought about "Design". Lots of good things today too!  I remember this lesson from when I took this workshop years ago, the idea of LOUD and quiet conversations being a new concept and could quite easily see this in my current (then) work. What I DIDN'T recall was the absolute magic that happened when Nicholas demonstrated the concept of quiet conversation, adding low contrast items to a page without ANYTHING changing to the high contrast shapes.  Folks, this is a game changer for me. My work often has subtle stuff going on behind the scenes but I've struggled with not allowing it to take over and become a Garage Sale. (OMG love this term!) Previously I assumed I needed to put in less which always made me feel a little sad....
I've been craving a new direction for a while now and the advent of Nicholas Wilton's Free Workshop came along at just the right time. Winding down from creating work (that I started last Fall) for an April show, I noticed some abstract painting sneaking in. Something I'm really ready to explore. Prior to the Monday, February 14th start, Nicholas offered up these tips to keep in mind as we moved through the workshop, all really good ideas and ones I've incorporated into my own art practice over the years. Sometimes we get so precious and hung up (read: stuck) on certain elements within our work, having a few Go Tos in our toolbox can be very helpful. Pretips :   5. Turn your work upside down for a new perspective.  4. Start with THICK PAINT. 3. Embrace Risk. 2. Make Two. At Least. 1. Principles. Not Rules.   On Sunday, I noticed I was quite apprehensive, sorta anxious and a little bit excited about Monday's start. When talking classes I often feel this... trepida...
I usually write a Welcome to the New Year post filled with things I'd like to do and make, maybe some specially chosen words to guide me, a photo or two of white winter scenes or a cozy jack by the fire. As we head into the second week of January 2022 I'm even less inclined to welcome this fresh, new year. Currently I'm lying flat on my back as my SI joint gives me grief. Again. Tom is in town picking up a solenoid or adaptor or thingamajig to try and fix our heating system which went on the fritz just before we head into our first major deep freeze. Not one plumber/electrician called him back. Assholes! The 'Whole Family Together' holiday plans got trashed because of this latest round of The 'vid. And frankly don't see any light at the end of this pandemic tunnel.  I'm just really done with it all. Happy fucking 2022. ...
In our ongoing series Between Artists: A conversation with Bridgette Guerzon Mills she asks: I am super curious how your media break went. Was it hard? Did it take some time to adjust? Do you feel like it's a necessity in today's world?   Caveat: my summer break was more about "I'm Going Outside" than taking time away from media per se though that, in fact, was what transpired so I'll answer from that perspective. When I had my epiphany of Maybe I'm NOT a 'Working Artist'  I felt this strong need to GET OUT OF THE STUDIO. Yes. I just yelled that. Much the same way you do when watching one of those horror flicks where the girl (Why always a girl? Seriously, we are NOT stupid!) says, "Gee, I heard a noise in the studio." At midnight. When alone. In the dark. During a storm. And the electricity has just gone out. Then proceeds to descend into the inky blackness. Yes. That strong. Yes. That loud. The social media aspect didn't even ente...
I'm making progress on the pieces for the Spring show and I thought it may be of interest to show how I go about developing a series, one of my favourite things, actually. There are generally three stages/criteria that virtually all my series have in common. Subject matter. Theme and visuals. Size. Yep. It matters! Look and Feel. Unifying palette and markmaking. Subject Matter Almost always there are words that kick things off.  For this current series, the show theme is 'Memory'. I wrote about this paragraph in  my last post : "He hated confronting those lost moments, being presented with some detail from his past and having to look on it like a stranger. It made his life feel like a made-up thing. A net full of holes." Which got me thinking about the reliability of our memories, the lives we construct and alternate realities. Right on the heels of a paragraph or phrase are the visuals, which often show up as if they had been connected all along or something. ...