Thursday, March 22, 2012

Black Vase

Black Vase is a mixed media piece done on an 8" x 10" x 3/4" wrapped canvas.  (That pebbly-looking background is the carpet.)  Black Vase's inauspicious beginning occurred one day when I was cleaning off my brushes.  I'd been painting on another canvas, using acrylic paints.  I have a real problem throwing away leftover paint, so I usually use my brush to mop up the paint from the palette, and then wipe the paint onto a blank canvas.  In truth, some of my best backgrounds have occurred that way!

Coming back to this canvas on another day, I decided to paint on the black vase.  I added some white paint to try to make it look dimensional.  At that point, I had a black vase on a burgundy background, and the idea that the picture needed flowers.  Afterall, it was a vase....  I found the thought of painting the flowers to be rather daunting, since I really liked the background and didn't want to mess it up.  So, instead of painting, I turned to my fabric stash.

Where I found this piece of fabric.  It was originally part of a dress that I'd picked up at a thrift shop.

Here's a close-up of the fabric.  I decided to cut flowers and leaves from the fabric, and glue them to the canvas.  I'm guessing I used acrylic medium to attach the flowers, though it could have been Mod Podge, or white glue.  All three go on white and then dry clear. 

I took the canvas out on the deck to take a picture in natural light.  This also shows the depth of the canvas.

Here's another detail picture, taken outside.  All in all, I was very pleased with the way the picture turned out.  It looks a lot better than it would have if I'd actually tried to paint the flowers!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

My Art Books

I limit my art books to two bookshelves.  The first two pictures show one bookshelf.

The next two pictures are the books on the second bookshelf.


And, lastly, my studio assistants:

Monday, March 19, 2012

Dear Jenny

I have, for about the 1000th time, been looking for a way to jumpstart my blogging.  What I've come up with this time is the idea of writing to a friend, telling her what's happening with me, and showing her the art I've been working on.  I picked a woman named Jenny, who I knew down in the Caribbean in the early 80's, when we were both living on sailboats.  We've kept in touch, usually once a year at the holidays.  She doesn't read my blog - as far as I know - but if this idea works out, I'll have to let her know that I've been writing to her! 

Dear Jenny,

This afternoon we meet the surgeon who will be doing my hip replacement operation.  There's just a little over two weeks left till the surgery. 

These last couple weeks, I've been thinking back to all the pain I've been living with for so many years.  And all the things that I haven't been able to do, even back when I was still working at the library.  Sometimes I'd take a patron back to the stacks to help them find a book, and I could have made a bet ahead of time that the book we wanted would be on the bottom shelf!  I'd have to point at the book, and the patron would bend down to retrieve it.  I've had x-rays, MRI, physical therapy, meds, etc.  I've had back pain, pains down my legs, and sore knees.  How come no one ever figured out I have a bad hip?

I guess the difference this time, when I went to the doctor's, was that I wasn't talking about back pain.  I told my GP that my hip was really bothering me, and he suggested an x-ray.  He came back somewhat amazed to tell me that there is absolutely no cartilage left in my hip.  Bone rubbing on bone....  Of course, after that, I got sent to the bone doctor.  We were scheduled to see a Physician's Assistant there, and I saw him doing some dictation while we were being settled into the examination room.  Later, through the closed door, I heard him go "Oh!" and then "Oh!" again.  I joked to Ed that the PA must have been looking at my x-rays - which we'd brought with us.  It turns out I was right!  When we met Steve, he looked at me kind of funny, like why was I still walking around? 

I guess now I'll have to say that my depression and my pain are joined at the hip!  Literally.  I can't help but wonder if getting rid of a lot of the pain will lessen my depression.  Wow, and wouldn't that be something?