Day 24 – 30 paintings in 30 days

Art, Solo Series

As I get ready to return to the lecture circuit, I have been thinking about how to articulate why making art that is deeply personal feels so politically charged.

Even if the themes in my art aren’t overtly political, daring to believe that my perspective — as a queer, mixed-race, black-skinned daughter of immigrants, as a rape survivor and a middle-aged mother — would matter to anyone but me is a revolutionary act.

Daring to believe that the world through my eyes is relevant and beautiful and worthy of consideration, of being framed and beautifully lit, hung on gallery walls or in people’s homes is an act of defiance, especially at a time when social/cultural/political forces are hell bent on eradicating all that I embody and love. This ‘daring to believe’ is precisely why I create art…

Here is painting 24 of 30:

SOLO #21 – 9″x12″ Oil & cold wax on Arches Oil Paper

Day 23 – 30 paintings in 30 days

Art, Solo Series

My heart is full after the COCA Auction yesterday. My artist community grew exponentially, literally overnight. And friendships that started at the Art Marathon deepened last night as we got to appreciate, with fresh eyes, the stunning array of work we collectively produced in 24 hours.

I had the pleasure of meeting collectors who loved my work, and people who have been following my creative journey online. Who knew??! And both my paintings found new homes. Imagining my works living in spaces where they are loved fills me with so much joy!

While I relish the solitude of my studio practice, this event was a welcome reminder of how interdependent our lives are. My ability to thrive is inextricably linked to you living your best and fullest life. My work needs your love to exist. Feeling this truth deeply today…

Here is painting 23 of 30:

SOLO #20 – 9″x12″ Oil & cold wax on Arches Oil Paper

Day 22 – 30 paintings in 30 days

Art, Solo Series

I am relishing the rigor of my experiences this month — the Art Market, the 24hr Art Marathon, daily blogging, and the “30 paintings in 30 days” challenge.  Having numerous opportunities to present myself and my work prompted me to find a way to introduce myself that doesn’t conflate ‘who I am’ with ‘what I do’.

I know from experience that it takes a lot of energy to change people’s perceptions of who/what you are once it’s fixed in their mind. So I’m grateful to have finally found a more expansive, inclusive way to describe who I am and why I do what I do:

I am a creative storyteller who will learn whatever medium it takes to tell the story that is emerging.

Here is painting 22 of 30:

SOLO #19 – 9″x12″ Oil & cold wax on Arches Oil Paper

Day 21 – 30 paintings in 30 days

Art, Solo Series

Just got home from the 24 hour art marathon — so much fun and incredibly hard.  I definitely make my best art when I can lose myself in the process.  Creativity, for me, comes from being fully present in the moment.  And as an introvert, that’s harder for me to do in the company of others.

But the joy of being immersed in so much creative brilliance was a rush–and I’m grateful to have been invited to participate.  And I would do it again in a heartbeat–especially now that I know what to expect…

At least I made one piece I was happy with…although I really wanted to be making more of these Solo pieces!

Here is painting 21 of 30:

SOLO #18 – 9″x12″ Oil & cold wax on Arches Oil Paper

Day 20 – 30 paintings in 30 days

Art, Solo Series

Two-thirds of the way through this challenge, I’m noticing a distinct shift in how I approach my work.

By paying attention to what draws my eye, what feels right, the distance between what I picture in my mind and what I actually create is lessening. I am getting better at being present, listening to myself, and trusting my intuition. As a result, the work I’m producing feels completely aligned with who I am in this moment…

Here is painting 20 of 30:

SOLO #17 – 9″x12″ Oil 7 cold wax on Arches Oil Paper

Day 19 – 30 paintings in 30 days

Art, Solo Series

The COCA 24 hour Art Marathon kicks off tomorrow at 10am–and the prep is getting real! So sadly, I don’t have time to write today.  But I do have time to paint 😉

I love how this piece turned out…especially the remnants of left over paint from earlier pieces (those traces of turquoise and orange).

Here is painting 19 of 30:

SOLO #16 – 9″x12″ Oil & cold wax on Arches Oil Paper

Day 18 – 30 paintings in 30 days

Art, Solo Series

I’m getting ready to create some encaustic mixed media paintings for COCA’s 24 hour Art Marathon and Auction.  20+ artists will be creating, carving, painting, sculpting, welding, waxing on site, making new works that will be auctioned off the following night.

Feels like a long time since I fired up the wax ~ I’m feeling a little green, but super curious to see how my recent oil/cold wax techniques translate to the auction pieces I create.  (I’ll be posting shots of the pieces in progress on Instagram.)

24hr Art Marathon:
Thursday, September 20, 10:00 am until Friday, September 21, 10:00 am
Art Preview: Thursday, September 20, 6:00 pm-9:00 pm
Auction: Saturday, September 22, 5:30-10:00 pm
Location: The Summit, 420 E Pike St

Here is painting 18 of 30:

SOLO #15 – 9″x12″ Oil & cold wax on Arches Oil Paper

Day 17 – 30 paintings in 30 days

Art, Solo Series

As someone who’s never been a multi-tasker, I find it surprising that I am at my most creative when I’m listening to podcasts (my favorites are long-form interviews with brilliant, creative people).

The brilliant “maker” Ann Hamilton says there is an energy and attention that is cultivated when these two sensations — the practice of listening and the act of creating — come together. This definitely rings true for me. My thinky brain is so focused on the conversation that it frees up my creative brain to be fully present and play. And conversely, there is something about my body and my hands being busy that allows my mind to open, and I’m able to fully absorb what I’m listening to.

Are there activities/practices you do that free up your mind to be more creative?  If so, please do share! I’d love to hear your thoughts…

Here is painting 17 of 30:

SOLO #14 – 9″x12″ on Arches Oil Paper

Day 16 – 30 paintings in 30 days

Art, Solo Series

I love the way abstract art invites the creator and the viewer to collaborate as storytellers.

As the creator, I have my own story that informs the choices I make (materials, color, gesture, etc.) that lead me towards a finished painting. Sometimes I clearly know the steps I need to execute to realize my vision.  But more often, my process is based on intuition.  I couldn’t articulate what influenced my color choices for this piece.  That pop in contrast just felt right to me.

And I love what you can learn about a person based on what they see in a piece. At the pop-up market earlier this week, I was struck by how many people were drawn to this painting because of the “Seattle Seahawks” colors.

So it made me wonder…was it intuition that inspired this color combination, or has the seasonal rise in Seattle football paraphernalia subliminally influenced my color palette for this painting?  Inquiring minds…

All I know is that this piece is super pleasing to my eye.

Here is painting 16 of 30:

SOLO #13 – 9″x12″ Oil & cold wax on Arches Oil Paper

Day 15 – 30 paintings in 30 days

Art, Solo Series

Talking about these SOLO pieces with people I met at the pop-up market got me thinking about ways I can continue to explore this series.  All of these pieces are on 9″x12″ paper because it was the size I had available. Yesterday, I bought a larger pad of paper, and am interested to see how these paintings change as I scale up.

I have also been questioning whether I need to include cold wax for these paintings.  I used cold wax initially, because that’s the medium I’m exploring.  But as I grow this body of work, I’ll be curious to see how these paintings work with oil or acrylic paint alone.

Doors leading to more doors…not unlike the opening credit sequence of Get Smart TV show I watched as a kid.

Here is painting 15 of 30:

SOLO #12 – 9″x12″ Oil & cold wax on Arches Oil Paper