The Gut Art Class is in it's 4th week. I have enjoyed watching the field trip videos and responding with art. The result has been art that I would not have normally done but it was inspired by using prompts, or "pulling" art out of a background or just viewing the art of other artists.
This past week I celebrated my 65th birthday. But mostly I celebrated Medicare!!!! No more exhorbitant insurance premiums - yipee!!!! Deb took me to Santa Barbara for a mini-vacation sans kids. We stayed with our friend, Eileen, who just moved there. We had a great time! Being the birthday girl, they let me plan our itinerary so, of course, art was involved. I went to two art shows. We shopped, we went crazy at a rummage sale, we dined at a trendy bistro and we laughed and celebrated life. We came home by way of Ventura where we met my friends, Dianne and Rose, for a birthday lunch. On Monday, my actual birthday, Deb fixed me a wonderful salmon dinner and baked me my favorite - a lemon cake! I felt so loved!!!! Although I'm an old lady now, I'm a happy old lady!!!!!
I watched video #3 today which featured the art of Cora Marshall. She did a wonderful series of paintings of Negro slaves. When I was done I saw a vintage magazine on my work table, the pages are yellowed and crisp from age. I just sat down and started drawing and this came out. It is a simple drawing done with colored pencils, I liked it and wanted it to stand on it's own thus the simple background. When I was done I realized the text was upside down, but in thinking about the injustices to minorities in this country, and particularly the horrors of slavery, I felt it was appropo since slavery did indeed turn people's lives upside down!
I did not start out purposing to do a painting for any other reason than to create a piece of art. However, once this zany lady was done I just envisioned her as the perfect birthday card. So I first added the birthday message using Picassa. Then I made a reduced color print on matte photo paper and used colored pencils to define some of the areas. I added the glitzy star, matted it with the same paper I used on the face, mounted it on a card stock and...... viola! - I have a birthday card! Actually, I made several.
Do not imagine that art is something which is designed to give gentle uplift and self-confidence. Art is not a brassiere. At least, not in the English sense. But do not forget that brassiere is the French word for
Our 2nd Field Trip this week was watching a video featuring the Antico Setificio Fiorentino, a silk factory in Forence, Italy where the textiles are still woven by hand. It reminded me of Grandma and her weavings. The looms looked like hers. It was nostalgic to watch the man standing on the loom just as Grandma did even though he was a world away from her home in New Mexico. She called it "dancing on the loom". You can find out more about my Grandma at this website: http://americanart.si.edu/education/corazon/artistas_02.cfm
Some time ago I decided I wanted to try my hand at weaving, but I could never imagine myself working on a large loom with all those threads, so I used a handmade one that I fashioned out of cardboard. I was interested in the various textures of the yarns and the bright colors. This was one of my humble attempts at weaving. I admire the art form but I don't have the patience for it.
One of the things we are doing in the Gut Art class is going on "field trips". Mystele makes videos available that take us on an artistic journey. The first was viewing the art of Terri Hallman. She is an artist I can relate to. Something about funky people art that just grabs me. I could look at her stuff all day long. She reminds me of one of my favorite artists, Fred Babb. He was fifty when he started painting which inspires me since I was 55 when I first started doing art. I've always been a crafter, then an avid rubber stamper, but it wasn't until 10 years ago that I truly fell in love with art! Did a quick mixed media piece in response to Terri's art. My next project will be to do a similar one using acrylics or watercolors.
I am on another art journey!!! I have started an online art class with Mystele. I will be using my blog to chronicle my adventures into Gut Art. Our first assignment was to make covers for our Gut Art Book which will hold our work. I did make one which is okay. The size will limit me a bit. So I remembered that last week I found a wonderful notebook at a yard sale (yard sales are my obsession!). It is a gorgeous Stampin' Up book (10" x 14") used by consultants. This morning I decided to alter the cover a bit and use it also. I just made a simple collage using yummy papers I'd been saving for a special project and attached it to the front. It is filled with thick pages which I will recycle by collaging them or painting over them to use for art projects. So I am ready to go with my TWO art books! As you can see, they are as different as night and day. But both appeal to me. There's my "wild/zany" side and my "proper/demure" side. Kinda like ying and yang. Never know which one will show up when I sit down in my studio! Let the fun begin!!!!!
I'm a Mom, a Grandma and a Great-grandma. I am very close to my family but they just do not "get" my art. So I will share it here, hopefully with people that do "get" it and like it, or are at least interested in seeing it. I have just become a "health nut" (for the empteenth time in my life) and love studing nutrition and coming up with new recipes using only fresh ingredients. I am a Christian and God tops the list of my friends. He is also my Father, my Counselor and my Guide. I feel extremely blessed to have a loving family and many wonderful friends, including friends I have met online at MySpace and Flickr. I hope this blog will be a format for further communication with all those I hold dear and will, perhaps, put me in contact with some more fellow artists and health nuts.