Solace . 24x36 inches . 2008

Hi. :o)

1. natural lighting
2. artificial lighting
3. combined uv and artificial lighting
4. uv lighting only
5. no light

Ingredients: acrylic, beach sand, crushed glass, phosphorescent pigments, varnish, water & light on canvas.

When I started working on this painting, I instinctively knew that somehow it was the beginning of a new phase in my work. Not necessarily in style or focus, but I've been particularly interested in what I can accomplish with texture and super thick paint. It takes an incredibly long time to build up, but I'm pleased with how it looks. The first image was taken in that awesome light I was blathering about in a previous blog post, where the sun shines through the windows, casting great shadows across the painting. It looks even more striking on a piece like this that has great texture, and really brings out the depth of the acrylic.

Obviously I'm going to have to increase my supply-buying in order to continue painting this way.

The color of this painting represents the light as it is before dawn, when it's still dark out, but the sun is clearly approaching. It's a very glowing light, very mysterious, and shifts between blue and purple as though it's liquid or fog, even though it's actually crystal clear. It's really a very beautiful, magical light, one that I rarely see because it's not in my nature to be up at that time, unless I've stayed up from the night before.

That's actually when I really experienced this light recently, in a way that inspired me to paint it. It was in June, and we had just returned home from an incredibly emotional and sad experience. It was when Meat died. I took notice of the light, in the same way that I took notice of the rain hitting the windshield on the night my grandfather died. I always notice the environment very distinctly in situations like that. It's almost slowed down, with the volume turned up.

Anyway, on that morning, the light was beautiful. It wasn't enough to call the color of the sky Lavender, although I've been referring to this piece as my "lavender moon" painting. It wasn't even the sky itself that I was looking at. The light was everywhere. It was in the trees, on the wall, and throughout the apartment. I sat and watched it for awhile to really absorb the color I was seeing, and to lock it in my memory as vividly as everything else I was feeling in that moment.

I adore the color of light.

Sand Flower

Ingredients: acrylic paint, beach sand, finely ground glass, phosphorescent pigment, varnish, water & light.

It's like when I would build things out of sand at the beach, except now they stay that way. :o)

Go to my shop to see Sand Flower in all five types of lighting.

Beginnings . 12x24 inches . 2008

1. natural lighting
2. artificial lighting
3. artificial and UV lighting combined
4. UV lighting only
5. no light

Ingredients: acrylic paint, beach sand, glass, and varnish on canvas.

I've been fine-tuning this painting since, oh... November, I think. By "fine-tuning," I mean restarting about 4 times. 5? I have no idea anymore. Needless to say, it has captured a great portion of my soul in the process.

In some ways, it's hard for me to look at it. I feel as though I've been looking at it for so long now. My vision has become blurry, and I see the many different paintings it almost was.

I think part of my difficulty was venturing out and exploring a new canvas shape. It's so long! Granted, I'm in love with horizons, so it seemed like it should be relatively easy.

I am very happy to have finally accomplished it. I'm actually well suited for this style canvas, so it would have been quite a pity had I not gained such experience points. In fact, I happen to have a shiny new 12x36 inch canvas staring me down from next to my work bench. I'm really excited to give it a whirl. Maybe not right away, though...

I should mention that, although you cannot see it at all, the painting is covered in those tiny glass pieces I've been obsessed with lately. It shows up as little white "dots" on the non-reflective sections, because that's all the camera flash can pick up. (See the second image above.) You'll have to trust me when I say (as I always do) that this is an incredible effect in person. Also, the greenish color in the glow image fades much more rapidly than the rest of the color, ultimately leaving you with a dark night sky filled with stars and magic that should last for hours. :o)

Of course I'm glad to have reached the end of this particular journey, but all that means is that I've cleared more mental space to begin something brand new. This art thing is addictive.

More New

Both in my Etsy shop, although the first one is no longer available. :o) (Thanks, Crystal!)

I've been experimenting with finely ground glass lately. It's interesting. Somehow, it's not sharp, but it does make interesting texture as well as making the painting super-uber sparkly (which is, unfortunately, absolutely impossible to capture in pictures.)

I did notice just today that there is something extra special about the way morning sunlight reflects off the glass. It's brighter and MUCH more sparkling than I'd even realized. I love the different colors of light. I should wake up earlier more often. (Yeah, right.)

I find it sort of funny that my mom used to make stained glass windows, and now I'm adding glass to my paint. Madness.

My New Studio

A studio! No couch! More space!

(Organizational goals for 2008 in full swing!)

I love my work bench. I can paint without crouching. Hooray. We also bought a few cabinets and drawers. I may need one more cabinet. For the time being, I am able to store most of my supplies in the same area of the house, rather than also in the kitchen, the bedroom, the closets...

I have not gotten used to it, and I constantly (constantly) go into the wrong room to get something before realizing that it was in the drawer right in front of me the whole time.

Colin put everything together himself, because he is wonderful and amazing and handsome and I love him. :oD

Meat was angry and spent most of the weekend under the bed, or scowling at us from the floor. He eventually began scowling at us from the couch cushion we kept, and then ultimately seemed to forget that we ever had a couch. Joey is thrilled that we finally realized that fetch is the most important thing, and have rearranged the apartment to accommodate this fact. He even helped us out by scattering his toys all over the newly created space.

As for Colin and I, we have taken up doing martial arts, yoga stretches, and spinning around in circles just because we can. I'm this close to doing a cartwheel in the middle of the room.

Mark my words: There will be hula-hooping.

Oh, and, more painting. Of course. :o)

A new year, a new package to ship.

I admit that I go a little overboard with packaging sometimes, but I do it because it makes me happy. A friend of mine does packaging with only recycled materials (boxes, paper bags, etc) out of respect for the environment. I love this philosophy, and I actually feel slightly guilty about how much bubble wrap I use because of it. But I swear, I can't help it. It brings me joy to wrap my paintings up like a gift. There's something romantic to me about fine art wrapped in fabric and tied up with hemp. I love to use fabric, and although I assume my collectors likely just toss it out, I use a long piece to wrap it up in, just so they can have the experience of unwrapping it. I think it really adds to the moment of seeing the painting for the first time when surrounded by a beautiful fabric, like the one I used to mail the painting above. (Which I purchased many yards of, just because I was so in love with it.) I also use a really long piece of hemp to tie it with, partially because it looks neat, but also because sometimes there are legitimate uses for things like a long piece of super-sturdy hemp!

In related news, I got to fill out my first Customs form! Yay!


I have a very distinct response from one painting to the next. Almost as if each new painting is some sort of answer to a previous one. Occasionally, when I'm being particularly productive, an entire group of paintings is an answer to something. The yellow-orange I use in one piece seems to directly influence the shades of teal I use in a different one.

I was reading this thing on intuitive painting once, and a lot of it seemed applicable to me. When I was first painting, every painting was intuitive, and I would sit and stare at the canvas after each step before deciding what my next step should be. Nowadays, since I have paintings all around me, the intuition comes out over a broader spectrum. Not that I don't still sit and stare at a painting before I decide what to do next. But now, I have a vague, fuzzy idea of how it will look when it's finished.

Constant exploration, though. I feel like I'm always trying to balance something through my art. I can't explain what that means, exactly, because it's more a feeling than anything else.

Just a feeling. A sway. Flow. Like jazz.