"Pair, Pride and Quartet" - mixed media on gallery wrapped canvas, 24" x 48" x 1.5" Ready to hang. Available here and at Artfinder.
My son stood by himself in front of this canvas last week, wondering what the heck was going on. Weirdly fascinated, he kept staring and studying. I smiled broadly when he told me this - there no greater compliment to an artist creating something peculiar than to have a fascinated observer.
I credit (and blame) artist Mary Pohlmann for this odd and quirky piece. She introduced me to Bizarre Beautiful magazine, which I promptly subscribed to. The first issue arrived, and my jaw hit the floor - whoa. So odd. So elevated. So bizarre. And so beautiful.
Add to this weird recipe the portfolio growing from the "Ten Minute Monsters" exercise each week with my intern, and you have a formula for other worlds, pure imagination and a sense that Willy Wonka is lurking somewhere in the studio. (He is! He is!)
My heart found a home in this piece. I want to parachute with nincompoops and leap over mountains with dear-lions. There is magic here, and just over the ridge lies a path strewn with candy corn that will lead us on our next adventure. Let's grab hands and GO!
And I would be working on said painting right now instead of writing this, except I already used up my hour for the afternoon. Sigh (and a bit of foot stomping). I am pretty sure there is a raised eyebrow going on in the other room.
Lately I've been excavating my own stories. Unearthing some gems, but mostly examining the bones of my beliefs and my own mythology. It is hard work, this digging. Like the pupa preparing to emerge from the cocoon, I struggle to break free of old patterns and rigid constructs which no longer serve me well. Sometimes these are deeply imbedded, ancestral patterns. Other times it is just a fondness for a second cup of coffee. That universe - always with the jokes.
Excavation (for me) is easier when visual aids are used. This piece allowed me to imagine new paths and patterns, and will serve as a reminder of the gems I've found along the way. And it is a powerful image all by itself on the wall.
Hmmmm, I wonder... is there still time for more coffee? :)
We are just a couple days from June...a month which heralds the beginning of summer, Father's Day and Ron's 65th year-around-the-sun celebration. If you're in Portland this weekend and want to stop by to toast the old man, give me a shout. We will kick off his birthday month on Saturday. Let the wild rumpus begin!
As I mulled over this process, I realized something about my own tastes. Though I am attracted to vibrant colors and contrast, what really soothes my spirit is more muted, subtle shades and shadows. Even in my own home, the vibrant interior vibe of my Florida house has softened into a misty, filtered Portland palette. Because everything here is softer. Maybe even me.
Pricing art is, well, an art in itself. There are all kinds of formulas, recommendations and recipes for pricing. By the hour, by the square inch, by the clientele the venue attracts, by three times the frame cost, even by dartboard. Ultimately, the only price that matters (I argue in my public talks on the business of art) is the price a collector is willing to pay. And although art collecting can be an emotional experience where pursestrings miraculously open (being a collector myself, I have experienced this first hand! Falling head over heals for a painting or sculpture and whipping out the credit card), generally buying anything is first influenced by how much we can afford to spend.
Artists are meant to blaze creative trails in the things they create. So let's blaze a new trail today, shall we?
One painting at a time, I will begin offering personalized pricing. What the heck does that mean? It means collectors will pay shipping ($15 flat rate) plus their choice of prices, ranging from "I'm on a tight budget but I love art" all the way to "I can support the artist 100% - lucky me!", with some options in between. Just choose the painting, then choose the price. A bit radical, but this feels really, really good to my heart.
I'd love to know your thoughts - because your opinion is the only one that truly matters. :)
Congratulations to Carol! You are the winner of last week's reader giveaway. A piece of original malarkey is on its way to you!
Jen Walls and her imaJENation