Thursday, February 10, 2011

Tucson Artist, Melinda, and the Quick Plein Air Study

Image © 2010 Melinda S. Esparza

It may seem like a subtle change here, as most of my links are the same and only the template design has changed. However, I do have some fun things to share today. And, I've got a new and improved attitude...See?! Bright colors again!

This painting, from a day of plein air work next to the Rillito River and a few miles north of midtown Tucson, is of a popular site, Thimble Peak. Most of the work was done on site, but I did paint a layer today over the foreground, darkening it to enhance the drama of the peak.

Last night, we drove across town to buy a large (48" x 48") canvas that was on sale. It was so inexpensive that I thought it might be good to check online to see what else is available. I went to ASW Express, and couldn't believe the deals. No, I don't get paid to hype this art supplier. Wish I did, though, 'cuz this week should get them a lot of sales. Their canvases are greatly discounted (check out The Edge 1 1/2"). Wait! There's more! I found an online coupon for an additional discount that resulted in free shipping. Not everything is included in the extra discount, but it's worth a try if you're looking for more supplies.

I've also been doing some online research. I've got a great new link to Joanne Mattera's blog. She's the artist who wrote the book, The Art of Encaustic Painting. Be careful. It's a great book and might get you hooked on another medium. Her blog will keep you interested for a long time too.

Then, I've got a link to the Google Art Project. Wowza. If you haven't seen this yet, take a tour of the MoMA, or travel virtually to some of the best museums in the world.

There is also a new link to ARTINFO. There are some very interesting things to see and read at this site.

Here is a great link to the only way to see Guerrillas In Our Midst. I recommend this to all artists, but especially women artists.

Finally, if you get discouraged with your art and the isolation that we artists often endure, this link to Carol Diehl's blog, Art Vent, features a quote of Alberto Giacometti's that I find meaningful. A snippet follows:

"....It becomes always more painful,” Alberto (Giacometti) said, “for me to finish my works. The older I grow, the more I find myself alone. I foresee that at the last I shall be entirely alone. Even if, after all, what I’ve done till now counts for nothing (and it is nothing by comparison with what I would like to create), fully aware of having failed till now, and knowing from experience that everything I undertake slips through my fingers, I enjoy my work more than ever. Is there any understanding in that?..."

Read on.

Paint on.


Barbara Muir said...

Yowser Melinda,

It sure makes me happy when you put up a post. Fantastic painting and great thoughts. Ah that phrase "what I would like to create" the stuff of dreams. Huge, huge canvasses inhabit my dreams.

Not tonight there's school tomorrow.


Melinda said...

Hello Barbara,
It's always a pleasure when you stop by and comment.

Yes, the stuff of dreams--painting, huge canvases and color, color, colour!

After school there is time to paint, yes?

P. S. Just watched the new 30 Rock and they did a funny skit about Jack and Avery in Canada. Loved it. Hope you get to see it.

Linny D. Vine said...

(Alberto need a blog bud like you - we all do!)
Melinda, this painting says BOLD and HAPPY! I love the color, color, colour!!!

Melinda said...

Yes, Linny, Alberto needed our community. Sometimes there's just no way out of the isolation thing. We need to be alone to think and paint, and we need each other to share, to laugh with and to support one another. Eventually, we'll work these things out. I'm just glad you're here. I feel your kind presence and the light from your area shining through.

Glad you like my spelling sequence. You got it! #;-}

kathrynlaw said...

This painting is possibly my all-time favorite; it's "firing on all cylinders." What size?

I love the new format and thank you for the great links!

You're gonna rock those 48 X 48's.

Melinda said...

Wow, Kathryn! I'm so glad you like this. It's 8" x 8" on artists' board.

Yes, firing on all cylinders with a dual downdraft weber!

Thank you.

daviddrawsandpaints said...

Well, what d'ya about on the same wave-length: as part of my "scratching around"* I found myself on Joanne Mattera's blog attracted by her most recent posting on Carmen Herrera, who at 94 was giving out some good advice to would-be artists like me on what she would say to her younger self (at least somebody is older than me :o) Your readers might like to read it for themselves here:

Thimble Peak's a cracker!

* A term taken from the book "A Creative Life" by Twyla Tharp (great name) to describe that period when we as artists can't put ourselves anywhere and thrash around searching and gathering objects and ideas to get us going.

Melinda said...

It is, indeed, incredible how great minds travel the same path.

I'm glad you found Joanne Mattera's blog. I bought her book on encaustics last year and love it. Last weekend we got to play a bit with encaustics at the "Open Gallery Crawl" here. Love the smell of beeswax. Yum.

Now, I'm heading over to your blog to see what you've been up to!

P. S. Thank you for the link to the elder artist. I hope everyone reads what she has to say.

Thank you for stopping by.

Elliot said...

whoa! new setup. dunno if i can handle it. love you ma!

Melinda said...

Well, blow me over with a feather!

Hey, Elliot! What a pleasant surprise.

Don't worry. It's just yer ole ma wanting to keep things fresh, since I can't be awesome like you young folk.

Come by again and talk some art speak sometime.

Love you more...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the informative post. And I love your latest painting. You are so adept at using color to create depth.

Melinda said...

You are most welcome, Jean! Thank you for stopping by and for your comment.

I try...I really do.

Jeffrey J. Boron said...

Like the bold shapes and right at ya colour Melinda!


Melinda said...

Thank you, Jeffrey. It's pretty "at ya", isn't it? I like that too and hope to do more.

You're doing great work lately, I hope you know.

Stay warm!

cohen labelle said...

Melinda, I always get a tremendous lift from looking at your work which looks magnificent against any backdrop including this new archival white you have recently chosen! Interesting response from my husband when I showed him your latest painting which he found very beautiful - he sees in it a touch of Hopper who he considers the great American poet of loneliness.
I also enjoy the links especially the one to Giacometti whose work I've always admired and who has interested me greatly as a person. He was a highly original, genuine and unassuming person with uncompromising integrity - yet he once said that in order for one to call oneself an artist, one had to be unequivocally pretentious! For some reason I found that remark delightful, both refreshing and reassuring.
xo Marcia

Melinda said...

Ooooh! I am liking your comment, Marcia!

Thank you so much. And, thanks to your dear husband.

Sometimes we must, indeed, be the only artist in the room.

Love that Hopper guy, too.

I was just over at your blog, lurking, and finally commenting. You are cookin'!

Donald Diddams said...

The heat is back in this one, all right. I like the way you lit this for the photo to help us see both the painting and the paint. Beautiful.
Again, the links are great, as is "Guerrillas...". After the weeks of non-art related projects, I'm looking forward to returning to the studio. So much new -- and different -- material to work with.

Melinda said...

Hi Donald,
Yes, it was a clear and warm day when we were on our paint out. Very bright day.

When I photograph my work, I have a place just outside my studio that I use for the set up. Sometimes I have to re-take the photo because it is too bright outside, but mostly, it's perfect. I try really hard not to adjust because I want the image online to be as true as possible with the real thing.

I am thrilled that you watched "Guerrillas..."! It is so inspiring and educational at the same time.

I dream of donning a "Guerrilla" mask. I do.

Looking forward to your new perspective.