Friday, July 30, 2010

Artist Melinda Goes on An Adventure: Part One

I haven't gone far. In fact, this adventure I'm about to share is from right here in little ole Tucson, the Old Puelo as it's often called.

About a month ago, Mr. Artyfice and I visited a local gallery to see their current exhibit. There we saw a Jim Waid painting that we admired very much. It was small. It was affordable. When I say affordable, I mean in a Tucson kind of way. The gallery has offered its patrons purchase plans in the past which meant that the lowly middle class collector could pay any amount over time (yes, even $10 per month, without interest) until the artwork was paid in full. A great deal, indeed.

We liked the painting so much that we spoke to one of the gallery owners who dropped us like hot potatoes when a photographer for a publication arrived, but we left one of my business cards saying how much we liked it and requested a call back.

Soon, one of the owners called, left a message, and referred to my "small" card. Later, the other gallery owner called and left a message too. This time referring to my "little carte de visite." It occurred to me that if I were a well known artist, or perhaps a male artist or reviewer with a newspaper, neither of these adjectives would have accompanied the reference to my card--with such deliberation. It put me off the whole idea of purchasing...and we've bought from this gallery before!

I went home and looked at my old catalog of Waid's work and decided to experiment.

This is the result.

(18" x 24," oil on cradled art board)
I figured that, dang it, I could paint something for myself in a similar fashion. Hmmm. It started something.

It's pretty difficult to get art into a gallery. Now I'm seeing that it's almost as difficult to get the artwork out. Galleries can't afford to be too snobbish, especially when they can't even remember a previous customer or recognize an eager, present buyer. Gee, and aren't galleries struggling in this economy?! More soon...

Friday, July 23, 2010

Artist Melinda Reflects on Secret Ingredients


How about a little play with color, a little play with paint, a momentary suspension of the hierarchy of the left brain critic? Oh, I know, it's in there watching: as you push paint around, visualize your influences, as you consider elements of composition along with value and construct. But you, the artist you, can be the alpha dog of your own paint world.

Speaking of influences. I painted this painting today and saw some of my favorite artist mentors. I swear, they live in my head! Previous to painting, I'd been out grocery shopping. I didn't see any painters then...

I see the influence if not the mastery of Helen Frankenthaler, Fritz Scholder and Jim Waid.

And, as always, my left brain sat in the corner offering a gentle word or two--mostly, thinking of Anne Taintor's, "The Secret Ingredient is Resentment." Anne is my kind of woman. Was this because of my chores today?

Don't let your left brain drive the painting. Your heart knows the paint a lot better.
Palm #57 Tucson (oil on canvas, 16" x 20")

Friday, July 16, 2010

Flying Cloud on a Gray Day in Tucson


Okay, everybody, back to work I am. I can't top my musical intermission, but I do have some links to share:
From Zocalo Tucson Magazine--A cool black and white photo of downtown Tucson looking northeast to the Catalina mountains. The menu at the top provides the entire magazine online. In their book review section, there is a recommended book titled, "Revenge of the Saguaro." It sounds good. Yes, there really was a guy who shot at a saguaro and was killed when one of the heavy arms fell on him.

On a happier note: Tucson Botanical Garden's Summer Saguaro Celebration presented by Etherton Gallery and an older video of Tohono Chul's Laughing Matters exhibit.

For those of you on Staycations: San Xavier Mission on the Tohono O'odham Reservation, Saguaro Harvest, Mt. Lemmon in the Catalinas, Dave Alvin & The Guilty Women Old Town Artisans really good blues guitar in Tucson, 2nd Saturdays downtown Tucson (we were there last Sat.), and one of my favorite bands playing in a shop entryway--Tammy West and the Culprits.

This painting (8" x 8", oil on artists' board) reminds me of the cloud covered sky under which Tucson awoke this morning. What a relief! It was a blistering 106 degrees ( 41.1 Celsius) yesterday, with humidity. We had about twenty guests last night...I don't know what the body heat index was. We had a great time, though. Lots of people wearing "No Papers" buttons.

Aren't we half way through summer yet? Aren't we?!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Shamans Came to Speak-My Hands Paint & Play the Song

Rain Dance, (16" x 20", oil on artists' board)

Intermission:

Our family friend, Ruben, is a very talented musician. He has been helping me with my newbie blues playing. Because it's summer and I'm thinking of a walking beat as well as experimental painting, I've included my song with this post (be kind, please, it's my first and I was improvising rhythm and lead). Ruben is the music producer and artist who recorded, mixed and made this possible, 'cuz I don't know nothin' 'bout no music recording. I am so grateful. Maybe he'll share some of his incredible talent with the world someday soon.