Rawrrr! Today I am excited to share something rather exotic with you. An eight foot long painting of an alligator that I created as a custom project for a client. Blair and her husband wanted a statement piece for their home in Louisiana, so this giant sumi ink and acrylic alligator was just the critter to fill their new space.
Inspired by the chunky and ferocious alligator tryptic of Yvonne Hanriout Giraud and Blair's southern roots I set out to wrestle a piece of very curled up, very unwilling to un-curl-up paper that was taller than myself into submission on my garage floor and painted this...
All I can say is, I'm grateful that the last few days of 2013 weren't snowy like the rest of the winter have been. I had a few "warm" hours to spread out and paint this giant gator in my garage in December in Virginia without freezing to death!
Hello! I am so excited to share these new paintings with you guys! I spent the last few days painting something a little bigger for a change... really big. Like three x five feet big.
This sumi ink & acrylic matador was a commission for the lovely Loren of Loren Hope Designs - stay tuned for pictures of it in her living room once it's framed! I hear she has some Society Social design elements that will compliment it beautifully too.
I also confronted my fears of the sea and painted some sumi octopi (octopuses?). Did you know about my sea phobia? I am deathly afraid of non-land-dwellers and do not eat sea food. It's my tragic flaw.
Here they are... I mean look at these monsters. Why do you people eat this?...
I had so much fun letting my imagination and my brush strokes run wild on a bigger scale. Although the garage floor will never be the same (sumi ink really likes to splatter)
As much as a certain non-pink-chair-allowing roommate would like to keep an octopus to hang on our wall, I plan to make these available for sale. Please contact me if you are interested!
hello! here is a quote painted in sumi ink for you to ponder this weekend.
i've been thinking about phrases that are good enough to paint lately and couldn't find one i loved. and then a friend of mine found this one while reading an in-flight magazine. isn't that an unexpected place to find a good quote?
Trying out mixing sumi with watercolor... does anyone know if I'm doing this right?! I'm a little frustrated that I don't know anything about this new ink but its also exciting to see what I can figure out on my own.
Today is my Grandmother's birthday, so I decided to try a shocking pink in honor of her. She always loved pink, and "palm beach pink" in particular - the brightest of the bright. She wasn't your typical grandmother. Glamorous and aloof, the closest she came to baking me cookies was letting me dress up in her collection of Pucci scarves and reminding me that "you can never be too rich or too thin"... as I said, not your typical grandmother.
another sumi ink sketch!
so, i've been at my parents house for an extended easter visit. and on every trip home i read the same book. its called "simple abundance" and it is a collection of 365 daily chapters about some small way to enjoy and rediscover the simple beauties of being a woman. it was given to my mother years ago by a wonderful, eccentric friend. it somehow wound up on my bedside table and every time i pick it up and flip to the day it is in the calendar it, almost uncannily, sheds light on exactly what i needed to hear at that moment in time. if i'm stressed about not accomplishing enough and then i open the book that day's chapter is magically about "going easy on yourself and rejoicing in each small accomplishment" or, on the anniversary of a loved one's death the chapter will explain how "memories only truly take form and become beautiful once we have lost someone and how we should take heart in knowing that through loss we gain powerful memories"
seriously it always works. until.....
I was all excited to flip to today's entry and see if it would provide some life-affirming insight into this juncture in our collective existence and then turn that wisdom into a blog post.
and, of course, today's chapter was a total throw-away. it would be. typical. experiment failed, theory disproved. it was titled "the art of fashion accessories" haha.
BUT, then i remembered i'd just sketched a sumi shoe and had been wondering what i'd write about when i posted it! and realized that the karma of the book was still at peace. it was just telling me that today was the day to share my sumi shoe with you all. what a relief.
see, always works.
go buy this book if its still in print. its by sarah ban breathnach and it will make you smile.
its time for another monthly resolution: trying new things.
last month my resolution was to find a breakfast plan to live by. I was really in a place of perfecting sameness last month and getting into a routine. And sometimes I get worried that my predisposition to routine living spills over into how i approach my art.
So this month my resolution is going to be about letting go a bit. routines and art don't necessarily go together. sometimes the best artistic moments happen when you step out of your comfort zone and let go.
First step is trying a new medium - Sumi ink. I just got a little pot of it yesterday and I'm hooked. It is so dense and rich and dries quickly and imperfectly which creates such interesting variations which you can see in the woman above. it makes me want to start working BIG.