Friday, February 24, 2017

Accentuate the positive

In positive, productive, and inspiring news, I am happy to share a couple of art related happenings that I am currently attending to.

I am delighted to be featured in an upcoming interview for the gorgeous, Art Scotland (I am working on answering the questions right now and will update you once the feature is live). I have also just been invited to show several of my recent paintings in an exciting exhibition, The Colour Purple, in April at the always impressive, Union Gallery. I am very excited and truly grateful for these upcoming opportunities.

The sun is starting to shine a bit more and the wind is milder (despite yesterday's storm, Doris Day) and it is starting to stay light, later each day. There are hyacinths, tulips, and daffodils on the living room mantel. All signs that spring is on its way. I think making it through a Scottish winter is a real triumph and it appears I have almost done it yet again.

I am still working on getting the Distillation Process properly documented in order to make limited edition prints and we are still tying up loose ends with the visa process. It will all get done, it will all be well.

Where ever you are and whatever you do, I hope you are well and are taking care of yourself. I know many of us are spending countless hours worrying about the state of the world and our governments. Besides worrying, many of us are taking action (some for the first time) as well. I thank you for your action and for protecting our civil liberties and freedoms. Until next week, keep fighting!

Friday, February 17, 2017

Wanting to remain

I must admit I miss the creative energy and drive of the distillation process. The past 17 days have been lacking the recent passion and unfortunately, have been fraught with anxiety. It's all hands on deck while we complete the visa process (yet again) so that I may remain in Scotland with Stewart and our cat Theo. It is incredibly stressful but we are making good progress on the time sensitive application. I can't wait for it to be over and to (hopefully) be granted that coveted permission slip from the U.K. government so that I can live another 2.5 years in my newly adopted homeland.

I have decided (mostly) not to freak out about this process, the expense and the rigor of the application as well as the required supporting documents, but it is always with me. If anything, this process has given me, even more, empathy for all the immigrants in the world going through the various processes to remain with their families, friends, loved ones, and pets in their newly adopted lands. We just want to be free to pursue our hearts, curiosity, opportunity, safety and our lives as we choose. It's so simple yet it is made so complex. I also know my educated, white, privilege makes this difficult immigration process so much easier for me. I will never forget this and I vow my continued solidarity with immigrants around the world.

So that's what's been going on if I haven't been publishing as much social media/art content as usual.

In other, more exciting news, part of the distillation process has begun to be documented for a series of limited edition prints (three of these images can be seen here in this blog).

It was so good to see the work in a new light after some time away from it. It's a bit tricky to document them with all the ripples and ridges in the paper but I think we will be able to work it out and make something beautiful. I will keep you posted as we progress. Until next week, please keep fighting. It's working.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Updates, admin, and raising hell

This week I spent many hours in the studio, less as a painter and more on the administration aspect of being an artist.

I am a proud member of both Visual Arts Scotland and the Society of Scottish Artists so I updated both of my membership pages on their respective sites. I also updated my own website. I am still working on cleaning up my CV, as well as polishing up my bio, and writing more of an all-purpose artist statement rather than a series specific one, as it usually is. These tasks take time and are always evolving and never seem to get any easier. I spent quite a bit of time researching, reading and rethinking things. I am always rethinking things.

Fortunately, I made some time for creating a couple of small pieces of art. I don't want to loose the connection I've recently been enjoying during the distillation process. It's always a balance. Soon the edited pieces of the distillation process will be documented and made into limited edition prints. I am hoping to make these larger in size and with a different type of paper from my previous prints. I will keep you posted on the process.

The sky has been dark and brooding prone to snow and hailstones as well as sun and blue skies. It captures my mood as I flit about, finding it hard to concentrate. Until next week you know what to do. Sign petitions. Call your officials. Show up and march. Send letters to the paper. Raise hell, and of course, keep making art.

Friday, February 3, 2017

My armor, my solace, and my connection.

On Tuesday, I finished the distillation process. 180 papers now sit on my studio table. It's an interesting way to start the year; it is just the beginning of February and I have already completed or have had my hand in 180 pieces of art. Like pages of a giant sketchbook, they are the evidence of my dedication to an idea. They remind me what I am capable of and what I believe in. I read somewhere that we are what we repeatedly do and every day last month except one, I painted.

I ask a lot from my work and at times it is unfair of me to do this. I can't keep asking for something from my work if I don't also give to it. I got back from the distillation process what I put into it. While working on the process, I was also reminded that I can lie to myself but my art never lies. This is one of the many reasons why I love making art. It has been a constant and dependable companion for so long. I haven't always treated my art as well as I could have; I have taken it for granted, I have been angry with it, and at times I have been very doubtful of its intentions in my life.

I've not thanked my art enough for all it has given me. Working on my art helped to rewire my brain over time to create more pathways to happiness and wholeness. My work helps me live less in fear and with more confidence and curiosity. Art has introduced me to the most fascinating people and has lead to wonderful conversations with strangers (now friends) from all over the world.

I told a friend earlier in the week that art is my armor, my solace, and my connection. The world can't mess with me when I am surrounded by art. That's why now, more than ever, it is important to keep making art for ourselves and for each other. We have political things to tend to and we have to show up and take action, but we also have to make our art. If you think this doesn't apply to you, I urge you to find your art. Find it and let it rebuild you, comfort you, and inspire you and then let it give comfort to the world.

Until next week, keep fighting.