somethings never (really) change

It's a new year. I contemplated doing a 'creative year in review' blog type post...but then I figured it's been done already. A zillion times. And really, I am bursting with new works and would like to focus on new experiences and creating new stories....so let's not, shall we? (Isn't that why these posts are archived anyhow?) I'm not one to make resolutions, but this year I have made a few. Kind of.

1.  on studio days...cell phone stays off (until 5pm....a girls' got to have a social life!)

2. draw or paint something EVERY DAY. Now...I'm not sure if this will take me back to 'one-a-day' paintings or not....but so far, that has been the case. Mostly focusing on being in my studio everyday...which already happens 90% of the time...but it could be a bit more.

3. read more books

4. visit galleries in Edmonton more

5. take more pictures

That's it. Simple and attainable.

So, today I was painting in the studio and I had my heart set on a little winter themed painting. A little 8" x 10". I finished this one yesterday:

"merry christmas from the 'star of the sea hall'", acrylic on canvas, 8" x 10"

A new friend of mine that I met on my last trip to Newfoundland, took this fabulous night time winter shot on his iphone while out and about one night in St. John's. He posted it on facebook and I asked if I could paint it. He said yes...and this is what came of it. Also....it has since been purchased and is in fact, being mailed to Newfoundland.

Today I worked on this:

"snow patrol", acrylic on canvas, 8" x 10", $90

It's a shot I took of tree branches covered in snow with early morning light on them....from two Christmases ago. I love painting winter scenes. There is so much color and so many interesting shapes in the snow and shadows. That and well, we really haven't had much of a winter so far. I'm still waiting for it. Painting it is not helping. Where the hell is all the snow?!

Painting this reminded me of one of my very first paintings which I still have and it happens to be on canvas board. It hasn't been displayed in public since I worked at a cafe called 'the Grind' back in 2000, when I brought it in to show my boss who heard that I was painting. It's attempt #2. There is a partial tree painting underneath, but I remember I hated the color, so I gessoed over it and started again.

"the honeymoon path", acrylic on canvas board, 18" x 24"

I used to shudder when I looked at this painting, but now that I've pulled it out, and have seen it next to a very current work...I am OK with it. The painting I finished today, according to my digital archive is painting #417 (not including other one-a-days, watercolors, sketches, postcards, pen and pencil drawings) and 'the honeymoon path' is probably painting #2. In some ways my painting style has changed so much....and in others, it hasn't changed that much at all. In art class in high school, when I would hate a drawing I was working on and felt like nothing could salvage it, I would tear the entire page out of my sketchbook. My teacher, Mr. Alspach gave me two pieces of advice that I still consider on occasion when in the studio now and am feeling frustrated if what I am working on isn't working the way I think it should:

1. don't tear out pages in your sketchbook. You won't be able to look back and see how you have progressed and feel encouraged.

2. stop using your eraser! Deal with the line you just put there.

I think maybe as resolution #6...I will get 'the honeymoon path' framed and hang it in my living room.