fresh flower time

lilacs and other flowers in kitchen

I’m still busy reorganizing things in the studio — making good progress, too — I’m getting ready to shift into full flower mode.  With the weather warming, we’ve been taking many long walks and already I’ve begun making drawings of flowers during those walks.  I go equipped with a small notebook and a nubby pencil à la Bonnard.  And there’s so many flowers to see.  Gotta love spring.

These flowers above may become subjects for drawing, but for now they just sit on the table for our enjoyment.

more flowers will arrive

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I have to find more flowers for the bouquet.  I go in search of pictorial flowers.  I look for them in the pictorial gardens.  And a lot of things are beginning to bloom now that spring is here — even pictorial things.

Under the bright pictorial sun, with my face toward the pictorial wind, I walk through the pictorial field to pick flowers that I can bring back to my still life.

stealing figs

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One of my flower paintings has a bowl of figs in it.  I confess I didn’t grow these figs or even purchase them.  I stole them.

And you can steal some too even if you live very far away from the source.  I got them from the bowl that you can find below.  They’re Snyder’s figs.

And this isn’t the first time I’ve stole them.  I go back and steal them several times.  The drawing above is the first stage of the most recent theft — it’s as far as I got at night before bedtime.

If you want to steal some too, get them here — there’s a zoom at the link’s end.

https://www.nga.gov/collection/art-object-page.134540.html

reinterpretation — riffing on the pattern

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Years ago I bought a beautiful table cloth at the Smithsonian institution.  It has one pattern on one side and another on the inside so it’s a versatile still life cloth.  As with anything else that an artist paints it gets interpreted.  The pattern of the real life cloth doesn’t exactly match the pattern of the cloth in the picture.  It’s like jazz — it gets improvised.

And in that strategy the artist finds a great deal to explore and enjoy.  This particular cloth has a great melody.  I never get tired of looking at it, thinking about it, painting it.  Thank you, textile artist, whoever you are who created my still life drapery.

empty bowl

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Even an empty bowl has something in it — it’s got air inside it, hanging there from rim to rim.  And light particles attach themselves to the air and gleam and glimmer inside it.  I’m not sure how one’s suppose to handle the topic visually, but I mix different pearlescent tints of white and hope for the best!

It should not be confused with real air though! — not according to the great painter Edgar Degas for he told us “l’air qu’on voit dans les tableaux des maitres n’est pas l’air respirable.”  [The air one sees in the paintings of the great masters is not the air we breathe.]

I guess that’s true of those figs I stole from ol’ man Snyders (more about that in a future post).  They’re only for looking at — you can’t eat them.

pattern

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I get ideas for backgrounds from old shower curtains that filter light in the studio, with shadows of things behind them in a diffuse confusion.

There’s always more ideas around — more of keen longing — than one knows how to manage.

my favorite part of the painting so far

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Some years ago I began the painting in which this detail appears.  Now I’m reworking it.  But this detail is my favorite element, and I’m not touching it.  Some of the bare canvas appears between lines.  There’s clear acrylic so it’s not actually bare canvas, but it’s got the color and appearance of the untouched canvas.