Thursday, April 2, 2009

. . . kept painting small

Here are a couple of new experimental paintings that I continued to make using up odd bits of canvas. I have just a few more pieces left and then I will have to break down, buy a new roll of canvas, and try to translate what I'm learning on these small canvases to the big canvases. But I'm becoming convinced that small paintings are the way to go these days. More affordable art, possibility of sales to new clients, plus I like making them. I used some of my new mark-making tools in these paintings, probably most noticeable in the bottom one where you can see the diamond-shaped texture from the gutter guard stuff and the round PVC thing with the lines in the opening. These are 6 x 9" and I scanned them, and usually on scans I get a pretty good likeness. But in person, these paintings are much more moody, sort of darker, brooding. Not as much red. . .oh, I don't know, they're just better in person, trust me.

Onto another topic: Do you work to live or live to work? I read an article in the newspaper this morning that surprised me: about 2/3 of the people questioned in a recent poll said they lived to work. I hope those who live to work really enjoy what they do for a living. I know people who live to work but have forgotten how to enjoy anything, including their work. And this brings up another question: do you identify yourself by what you do or who you are? Or is it the same thing? I read in another place recently that in the United States, most often when you meet a new person, you want to know "what they do" but apparently in parts of Europe it is considered impolite to ask that question. Here's another quote from another source: "For a long time, whenever people asked her about what she did for a living, she always said, 'Artist,' though that implied that she was compensated on a regular basis, which wasn't true. . .In recent years she'd say, "I used to be an artist. . ." (From The Ten Year Nap by Meg Wolitzer.) I don't have a logical conclusion to this, just random stream-of-consciousness ramblings that are somehow connected.


Anonymous said...

Don't you know, the germans live to work and the French work to live. The Germans will phyiscally sweep the streets by hand, where as the French streets are filty and the people are at the beach. You are German honey.....

~Babs said...

I'm glad you scan your work, so we can get the 'up close' experience.

I used to paint much larger,and only on canvas,, but the last year or so I've discovered how much fun it is to work on paper, and in a smaller size.Of course lately I've taken the side trip in clay, and it's all good.

I used to live to work, and loved what I did. I retired last year, (after almost 30 years.) I had a few days of "who am I?" going on, but I got over it. I'm liking the new/old me, even though at times I'm busier than I've ever been.The only thing I miss about working is the trip to the bank.

Jazz said...

I definitely work to live. I tried the whole career thing for a while many many years ago because my then boyfriend was into that. It was the unhappiest time of my life.

Work is something I do to keep a roof over my head and food in my belly. It's what I do in order to be able to afford to LIVE. I don't define myself by my job. Mr. Jazz is the same, so neither of us is going to be making the big bucks anytime soon. On the other hand, we're happy so who cares.

What I find most bizarre is, when people ask me what I do and I say secretary, I see my "value" crashing. And that's sad. Of course, I think I have the big end of the stick. I might not have the huge house with 5 baths, but I have time for myself, and I do things I love. What more can you ask for.

bob cornelis said...

Your way with textures is so complex and satisfying. Makes you want to just study them over and over.

Interesting that you are moving smaller - I'm headed in just the other direction, trying to paint bigger. It's intimidating for me. One nice thing about small work is you don't have to invest so much time in it so if you don't like it, it's easier to move on to the next one!

Mary Buek said...

Hil: Oh, I want to be at the beach. I want to be French. Maybe I'm the exception that proves the rule?

Babs: Yeah, that trip to the bank kind of made up for a lot of hassles. It took me a long time to get used to not going to work at the office every day. But now I don't know that I could ever go back.

Jazz: Don't people realize that secretaries actually run the world? I like your attitude, and I think with the economy being what it is, a lot of people will be adjusting to fewer material goods and making the same decisions as you have about how to live. I know I have.

Bob: I am so loving your current work. But then I really liked your monoprints and older work, too. Small is easier to me, cheaper, and as you said, less time consuming and you don't feel so bad screwing something up. I think I'm more experimental when I work small. Learn more to apply to when I go back to big. But big is relative. . . the biggest I do is 4' x 4'.