After a few months of not being able to paint due to back pain, I finally was able to paint something. The serene colors of early spring along the coast in Santa Monica are inspiring.
Category Archives: environment
This time of year, the sky takes on different hues that feel more urgent in their brilliance. The rush to capture a sunset on canvas seems more purposeful to me. I was born at the beginning of the fall in October. The last days leading up to my birthday always seem more compelling. I find myself swooning at the view while standing at the fence a few feet from the cliff edge in Palisades Park, Santa Monica. If you haven’t been to this fence to take in a sunset, it’s hard to imagine the layers of colors and the intensity in the last days of summer and the beginning of fall.
Blooming southern California
Every now and then I end up painting flowers… I am more of an abstract artist but I am inspired by the beauty of flowers around me here in Southern California. The other night Liz and I walked down to Palisades Park to smell the roses in the dark. Even in the low light of street lamps, I was able to take a beautiful photograph of a white rose. The rose garden is in memory of Arcadia Bandini de Baker. You can find many different colors of roses in the park. Some smell sweet, some smell spicy, and some really don’t have much of a scent.
This painting was meant to be whimsical and the flower, which is a lily is based on an old pattern. My mom loved the white lily while I am more a fan of the stargazer lily. So I’m posting lilies today on Mother’s Day. I hope those who have a mom in their life spend a little time saying thanks. We all wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for our mom.
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Days of fog …
Santa Monica has been soaked in fog for so many days I’ve lost count. I have been continuing to work on some abstracts that were influenced by my trip to Portugal. I am posting a couple here that are hanging in an office now. The larger piece took some weeks to complete. I layered paint on it to resemble the way paint is layered on walls in Los Angeles. I often see squares painted over concrete to cover graffiti. The layers start to peel after time, weathered by sun and the moist film left after fog settles in for a night.
Sun bleached tiles
The second painting, the smaller of the two, is a bit creamier, like sun bleached tile near the beach. I’m not sure exactly where I have seen this, but it may have actually been inland Mexico in Cuernavaca. I remember someone saying that Cuernavaca is a city of walls.
To me, walls represented the separateness that plagues communities. Walls keep neighbors from knowing each other, although Robert Frost wrote that “Good fences make good neighbors” in the poem Mending Wall. However, it isn’t Frost’s words, the saying is a 17th century proverb. Frost though ruminates on walls: “Before I built a wall I’d ask to know / What I was walling in or walling out / And to whom I was like to give offense.” I wrote a poem after the visit to Cuernavaca, reflecting on the walled in residents of the city and how it feels to be walled in. It was published in an online at http://www.moriapoetry.com/falin.html …
Walls as art
This work is an attempt to turn the walls I see every day into an inspiration. If you drive around Los Angeles, walls take on various meanings depending on the materials used to create the wall, how its aged and weathered, and what people have added to it.
Walling in or walling out
I had the fortunate experience to live in a neighborhood without fences for a few years. I can remember walking to school through yards. I knew all my neighbors – good or bad – they knew me, too. There was a sense of freedom when I lived without fences and could run through the neighborhood to the park, school or a friend’s house. In spite of the feeling of separateness that a wall can invoke, there are some interesting and even beautiful walls. The second painting makes me think of a beach side wall, creamy colored, but sun bleached – maybe close to a hot tub.
Spring finally did show up
The first day of spring passed and I am flying into autumn with a trip to New Zealand and Australia. I am looking forward to seeing new places, new art, and meeting new people. Look for some new stuff when I return.
As always, my work is for sale and you can contact me at email@example.com if you are interested. All work is copyrighted, and can be used under the Fair Use guidelines (not for profit). If you share this web page, let me know. Thank you for stopping by …
Under a gray winter sky
The days feel much colder now as January is half way through. After visiting Portugal, it feels even colder here in Santa Monica. The sky seemed to become an endless gray cover and I found myself reaching for black, white and every shade between the two. My own version of 50 Shades of Gray… This painting is a black and white version of the last post which was filled with rich and warn hues of brown and gold. I also used some mediums to make the surface appear rough and worn like an old tree weathering a winter.
Drifting from bright color to the gray day
This painting took some time to develop, and then a while to dry. I have continued to experiment with black and white with a small amount of color and will post some of those works soon. While in Portugal, I went to a museum dedicated to a woman who was an abstract artist. Maria Helena Vieira da Silva grew up in Lisbon and was greatly influenced by the structures around her. If you are interested, you can read about here in Wikipedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maria_Helena_Vieira_da_Silva. I was impressed by the museum and the people who were there working the day I came were very gracious. The museum is near the aqueduct. I have been inspired by her work and inspired by a country that dedicates a museum to a woman who was an abstract artist – a rarity.
Less is more – the impact of sparse color
I am intrigued with the impact of very little color in a work. I have been experimenting with a more structured look like da Silva. It is strange to do something so completely different than my colorful work.
Thanks for stopping by …
I appreciate everyone’s feedback … it is inspiring to hear from others and also to visit your blogs to see your travel pictures, and read about your experiences. The best part of WordPress is that I can interact with people from around the world. I am currently trying to decide where to go next, so I will be reading about your trips. My next trip is the end of March and beginning of April… I’m hoping to explore a country I haven’t seen yet.
All work is copyrighted by me and is for sale. If you are interested in purchasing work, you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will be working on a way to sell on the web site during the next month and plan to put something up in February.
A Tree on Ocean Park
Santa Monica has some grand old trees in the park along Ocean Park. This one near the intersection of Santa Monica Boulevard and Ocean Park inspired my work posted here. The tree isn’t quite the mix of color I have here, but has a little more gray on it as if it is showing its age. This is the colorful version of the tree bark. I also have a black and white version that appears a little more rugged and aged: a tree with character.
Chocolate and caramel
I used a mix of warm colors in smooth strokes like a swirl of chocolate and caramel warmed by a little sun. There’s a mix of several colors on top of a black canvas. I actually haven’t put the finish on it, so the color will pop a little more after I do.
Much of what I paint is inspired by the environment. I have walked past this tree at least a hundred times. Although I took a picture of it, I painted it from a mix of memory and emotion that thinking about the tree evoked. I do appreciate the way care has been taken to keep the trees along Ocean Park alive. I still remember the first time I saw this tree in 1999 while walking along Ocean Park with a friend. We stopped and talked about how grand a tree it was and I took a picture of it. Both the tree and my friend are still part of my life. It is easy to take the beautiful environment and the love of friends for granted, but here I am 13 years later thinking about how grand both the tree and my friend are …
As the days grow short, and a little bit cold, I hope that we all find some warmth and that this brings peace. As the crowds scurry about looking for gifts and getting angry with long lines and traffic, I hope to spend some time with friends and maybe a few old trees before I head to Portugal.
Thank you …
Thanks for stopping by and taking a look at my work. I have people ask me often why I use WordPress instead of creating my own web page. I always tell them it’s because of the community. While my art is for sale, I hope that there also is a personal connection made in the process to the work. Art on your wall should be something you love to look at, something that evokes a feeling. If you are interested in any works here, you can contact me at email@example.com.
All work is copyrighted by me and is for sale. Please ask permission before using images posted here of my work. You can share the link, repost or share the post.