Friday, April 4, 2008

My Bermuda Studio

I think that most of you know that I spend a lot of time living in Bermuda. My husband is a "bean counter" here with a contract to work for at least another 18 months. I know! You have no sympathy for me especially knowing the kind of winter you have been experiencing in the northeast! But it's time for me to clear my Bermuda work space and begin to create for the 2008 season! Clear the work space you ask? YES! But it looks pretty clear to me! Well this photo was taken soon after I set up the studio almost a year ago. Since I have not painted much in the last few months it has accumulated supplies, as many surfaces can over time. You know how that goes :-)
The work you see on the walls has served as templates for much of my work. They are Sumi-e paintings (Asian ink paintings) that I created in the last few years and the inspiration which led me to the creation of Hairlock Paintings(tm). Though I have begun to move on to other subjects I keep them up as a reminder of my roots and the desire to keep most of my work simple. Sumi-e is about the "essence" of a subject. It's about capturing the spirit of something without duplicating it's every detail. It is something that I am constantly aware of when I paint but continues to challenge me. Our brain has difficulty allowing us to duplicate what we see instead of what it thinks we see. It is always using memory to add and remove details at will based on our impressions of the objects that we are looking at. It is not my intention to duplicate as in a photograph, the subjects that I choose to paint. Instead, I always strive to create something that has a bit more spirit, but often without success. It doesn't make the work bad since many artists duplicate subjects to as much reality as possible in all of their work. It just challenges me each time I create to strive for something deeper.
There is a great book that I recently picked up called "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards. Even if you do not draw or ever intend to, the information revealed in this book about how our brain works and sees images is fascinating. I highly recommend it!

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