Friday, September 30, 2022

And no one sees us

I went to the studio on Tuesday. I didn't paint but I went in and I looked around. I looked at angles, smudges, colours and lines. I got grounded and then I took care of an errand.

I went back to the studio on Thursday. It was looking iffy but I made it and I am so glad I did. I bought some Oreos and some cold brewed coffee (I'm back on a bit of coffee after 29 years of not). I also bought myself The Cure's Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me album from 1987 as an extra bit of encouragement (along with the coffee and Oreos- whatever it takes). That album was one of my favourites from that very year and it's just as good now. And then the above happened. I took the large abstract painting I had done on a gifted to me 100x80cm linen canvas (thanks patron!) and turned it on its side and then quickly drew these charcoal faces. Red cheeks, white cheeks, wobbly cheeks, eyes getting more impatient and smudged, mouths quick and dirty - that's how I work. I don't have time to waste - paint around the shapes - everything is abstract - see the old painting peeking through. Spirits come forward. These quickdraws are standing all around us. Not even considered. Rude and rushed - poor and floating - they become one. I don't understand much anymore I think. But I know I don't want to make them "better" just yet. People like them raw and bad. So maybe I should too. 

So, I left the spirits and entered into their world, where the yellow line took me by the hand. The more troubled, the better. Bread crumbs into the darkness that I follow alone. 

"Well we’re a mile under the ground
And I’m thinking that it’s Christmas
And I’m kissing you hard
Like I’ve got very important business
And no one knows
And no one sees us
Because they’re drinking their selves senseless
And I’m writhing
And I’m writhing
And I’m writhing in the snakepit..."

Have a blessed day y'all. (read it in an Arkansas accent - pretend you are shopping and they say this as you turn to leave the till)

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Friday, September 23, 2022

Army of me


And here's the Tuesday Studio Video Visit if you missed it. 

So that's it. I worked my two scheduled days in the studio and I had fun and felt good about it. Thanks to everyone who has let me know they are enjoying this latest series of "accidental portraits." I don't think I am going to stop anytime soon.

Special thanks to my two new Kofi support warriors this week! 
Bekky and Mas you are making a difference in my art and life! Thank you!

Until next week, keep fighting.

Friday, September 16, 2022

Washing brushes, talking about paintings

Time has been a little strange this past week, to say the least.

I made it to the studio on Tuesday as planned and took a quick look at the large canvas I worked on the previous Thursday. I put it aside for now and decided to go through my paints (I had 10 tubes of the same colour on the go many times over and cluttering up my palette table). I also went through all my brushes and found a selection of them that needed some tender loving care after some neglect. 

I sort of hit the ground running when I returned to the studio and just threw myself into using the space and creating new pieces. A forceful re-entry but probably not a sustainable one. Besides dealing with the paints and brushes, I did start another small square canvas just laying in some washes. Nothing serious. I skipped the studio on Thursday due to some other things I needed to attend to more. This is the 4th consecutive week of working in my studio space since before the pandemic. While I am creating new patterns and schedules I want to be careful to not return to being the taskmaster I once was in creating work to prove to you that I do indeed "work." This is leftover programming that no longer serves me but is deeply worn into my brain. I have done a bit more walking in the past week as well - Autumn always seems to be the walking season as I prepare myself for the darker and shorter days. 

For my Tuesday Studio Video Visit this week, I decided I wanted to try something a bit different and talk to you about one of my favourite paintings from childhood. Paolo Uccello's "St. George and the dragon."  Of course, I only meant to talk for 5 minutes but it ended up being 15 as I couldn't contain my excitement. If I record more of these videos I will keep them shorter. If you missed it, here it is again. Please subscribe to my YouTube channel if you haven't already. Thanks! 

This week I also sent out an email to my subscriber's list as sometimes social media isn't the best way to get ahold of everyone as it becomes more of a pay-to-play scenario. If you are not on my mailing list please sign up. I never spam and usually only send out newsletters quarterly or when a special event is happening that you might want to know about. As always you are in control and can unsubscribe at any time. Click HERE to sign up if you haven't already. Thank you. 

There are several ways you can support my work: 
Buy my art online or through my studio - Message me about pieces on my website and across social media - I am working to find the best point of sale platform online just now.

And of course, please share my blogs, videos, paintings and social media posts. Leave a comment - it all helps and I appreciate you for putting in a good word for me and my work. 

Thanks to everyone who remains on this path with me, I couldn't do it without you and I wouldn't want to. I hope you are well, happy, and inspired. Until next week, keep fighting! 

A big thank you to my regular monthly Ko-fi Supporters! 
Jennifer, Tamsin, Jennifer, and Pat - you really make a difference!! 

Friday, September 9, 2022

Wild and complicated

This week in the studio was a challenge, however, I did stick to my schedule and in fact, I put in just a little extra time in the studio on Wednesday as well. So I have managed to go to my studio at least twice a week for the past three. I am just trying to get back into the habits of showing up, being in the space, and sharing the space with my studio mate who has been there since May. I wasn't expecting any hard or serious work but then a flood of portraits came forward. I got excited, and suddenly I was expecting things of myself, my work and my time in the studio. That is a pressure that I just don't need and especially when I am trying to build habits with compassion for myself and the process. I don't want to be a machine anymore or approach this time with harsh rules, but unfortunately, it is so easy to let that part of my brain take over.

Anyway- this is a long way of saying - there were really no "good" portraits this week - maybe one or two - but definitely not six. You can see and hear my frustration during the Tuesday Studio Video Visit this week.


One from this week that might work

A lovely patron gifted me with a collection of canvases this week, and so with feeling the frustration of the faces not materialising, I decided to get out one of the largest canvases, a linen 80x100cm and have a go at painting a good old abstract painting.

A fevered energy took over and I bashed out a muted abstract in greys, blacks, and ochres. I messaged a dear painter friend, "is this a painting?" 
I decided it was (for now) and it certainly captured the atmosphere of the day.

Soon after I stopped painting, I heard the Queen was gravely ill. I packed up my stuff as I strangely felt the urge to get myself home.

I listened to the news during the rainy bus ride and turned on the BBC once through the door. I respectfully sat up on the sofa when they confirmed the news of her death. What a long and full life.

In my UK citizenship ceremony two years ago this month, I made an affirmation - a solemn, and sincere oath to be faithful and allegiant to her Majesty, her Heirs and Successors. Every immigrant who becomes a citizen in this country has gone through this ritual. And all of those naturally born in this country are born subjects. 

Life is filled with such wild and complicated moments.

A vintage postcard I was given while on my citizenship path.
Stapled to the back of the studio closet door.

Friday, September 2, 2022

Faces and Free Post! Happiness!

Hi ya! 

If you joined me last week to read about the developments, then thank you! Sadly, no one left a comment, so no one wins the print. Sorry, you all missed out on that! 

lolzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz/cries into the void... 

No, not really because I am having too good of a week to worry about that. I have analytics that tells me my readers are lurkers and that is perfectly alright with me. Hello! 

This week I want to show you my new friends that showed up in my studio. 

I am so bloody happy and relieved to be working again. These portraits are a joy. I have been told to create at least 20 more, so that is what I aim to do! 

In other news, it's FREE POST weekend for UK orders from my shop, Gutless Apparel! You don't need a code or anything to save a bit of cash! This Friday, Saturday, and Sunday - FREE SHIPPING in the UK! YAY! Click the link to shop and save!

And that's where I am going to leave it this week. I am thankful for everyone who supports me. Have a good weekend. Take care. - Megan

This link will take you to all my other sites:

PS. This is for folks down in the Scottish Borders or planning to visit! THIS WEEKEND: Make plans to attend Innerleithen's Open Studio event! Keep your eyes peeled for my friend and fellow artist, Muriel Prince's gorgeous abstract work at her open studio as well as in the exhibition, The Dam, at St. Ronan's Wells. And of course, stop by Solo Gallery - they will be open on Sunday!

If you enjoy what I create and share consider leaving me a wee tip of £3. Thanks!