Sunday, January 25, 2015

Sunday, January 25, 2015

It was one of those mornings when everything was out of sync - awake too early, scratchy throat, and it was beginning to snow. The final indignity was missing my bus by 20 seconds despite the app on my phone assuring me I had another two minutes until it arrived. A snowy Sunday morning, and of course the next bus was not due for another 25 minutes. I had a good five minutes of feeling sorry for myself, not sure why that feels so good, but walked to the train and was heading up to my studio pretty quickly. It was while riding the train that I realized what a beautiful morning it was. The snow was just beginning to collect in some areas, and the city was deserted and quiet. I happily stared out the window, mesmerized by the landscape the entire fifteen minute trip.

The problem with taking the train to my studio is once I arrive at my stop (Berwyn) I still have a walk of five blocks, which at times can be a little dreary. But, in actuality it was a good day for a walk. Yesterday in the studio someone had asked me about an old panoramic photograph of mine that depicted a wall of graffiti. I had not looked at the photo in awhile but I remember where it was taken - the west wall of the Berwyn El station, where I was now disembarking. I knew the painting on the wall had evolved over the years, such is the nature of graffiti. The neighborhood may have even had a program where they encouraged young artists to work on that wall. I also knew that up until a few years ago, at least one element of the old graffiti depicted in the photograph, a large cartoon-like head, was still visible. Now, in a better mood despite still not having a coffee, I took detour to visit what remains of the graffitied wall. I'm happy to report my favorite head is still there, changed, a little duller in color, but still with a spark in its eye. And the rest of my short trek to the gallery was equally as inspiring, not for any specific reason other than it was lovely to look at the world covered with the light coat of snow on a not too cold day.

A few photos from this morning. The original panorama with the graffitied wall, and then a quick shot of the section of the wall as it exist today. Then a few photos I snapped on my walk to work. Gathering ideas, reacting, but not really over-thinking.

The snow continues to come down, and I may be less sanguine about this in five hours when I head home, but for now, lovely morning.

Addendum - February 1, 2015

The proposal in regard to the Graffiti panorama continues to move forward. The space where the photograph will resides has specifications that require reworking the proportions - which in some cases I am able, and happy to do. And we will be scaling up the image which is always exciting. Below is the reworking of the original photograph in its new cropped state. And then a playful juxtaposition of the wall ten years ago and now. 

Hello Old Friend, I Haven't Seen You In Years!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

More Drawings

I have had many requests for images of my drawings from people outside of Chicago. That sort of inquiry requires me to photograph and label the work - not my favorite activity. Even the minimal photo correction I undertake is tedious and repetitive, and adding the text is annoying in Photoshop. But it is a nice record of my work, and I can easily post things on this blog. Below are a few new images, including photos of recent 'Basket' drawings. Note how the basket drawings are heavier than the earlier versions. That corresponds to the sift in media, from India Ink to Montana Acrylic Paint. The bottom Richter-like piece is actually a collage. I cut the original into strips and reassembled them in a slightly altered order. The drawing has been hanging around for a couple years, but this week I trimmed the edges and it looks like a whole new piece.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Zig Zags

I'm noticing a new tendency in my work this week - Zig Zags. I'm sure it is only temporary, I will come out of it soon. But in the meantime here are a few images of the trend as it evidenced in my studio.

Untitled - India Ink, Acrylic Paint, Arches Watercolor Paper - 40 x 26 inches
Untitled - India Ink, Acrylic Paint, Arches Watercolor Paper - 40 x 26 inches
Indigo Zig Zag - Watercolor, Acrylic Paint, Arches Watercolor Paper - 40 x 26 inches
Various 12 Inch Panels - Prepared Panel, Acrylic Paint - 12 x 12 inches each

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Morning Sketch from Puerto Rico

I intend to post a few images of my sketchbook pages, but the severe weather and a little business have kept me from doing so. But I did find a few photos from one of my mornings sketch sessions, and have a corresponding drawing to go with it, so I will post those as a teaser.

I was rising early every morning in Puerto Rico. I would often be the only person around the guesthouse for a good hour before my traveling companions or other guests would appear. The continental breakfast was always available by 7am, but I did not even see the person that set it up, it just appeared. I would sit on the oceanside table and chairs, only 25 feet from my room, and over coffee and a sweet roll work in my sketchbook.
The results were not always without fault, but the practice was energizing.

Sketchbook Page - December 24, 2014

The oceanside chairs outside of Number Uno Guest House

Later, Michelle and Elena would join me. Early morning swims were mandatory.