Monday, March 23, 2009

STAY THE COURSE, 4 feet x 12 feet, acrylic on canvas...

Today's canvas was started on Saturday. After I rolled out the huge 8 x 12 foot canvas, (which is actually a drop cloth) I noticed a seam about 1/3 of the way down the cloth. Instead cutting into the cloth with the intention of stretching onto canvas bars later, I decided to cut along the finished seam and keep the finished edge. I then had a 4 x 12 foot canvas with a completely finished edge all the way around.

Presentation is a huge issue when I am hanging a show or canvas. Usually I stretch my images around stretcher bars and use the stretcher bars as my frame. I have been doing this for many years. But these new images don't need stretching because the frame is the raw gesso that is tinted on the rim of the canvas. The good news is that I can roll these up and they are portable. I can take them anywhere. This is great since now the size of my vehicle is not an issue. I used to have to design my paintings around how I could transport them. Now all I have to do is roll them up.

"Stay the Course"seems to be my life's theme presently. A few weeks ago my cousin Marissa showed me a cool site on Facebook that matches your birthday with the #1 billboard song on that day. Guess what mine was for October 6, 1960. Larry Verne "Please Mr. Custer".
what does this have to do with art and me. I thought it was funny to have such a silly song for my #1 song at the time of my birth. But the weird thing is, I have been using the theme of "stay the course" in my daily meditations recently. The U-tube video has a sub title on it Custer "stayed the course" and that is precisely what I am trying to do in my own life. I have endeavored to be more disciplined in all areas of my life.

Yes I know I am talking about virtues, because I believe that being an artist requires strong virtues. Artists need to be strong and disciplined and quite simply, "stay the course". We don't have a paycheck to motivate us everyday to go into the studio. Going into the studio every day without pay requires discipline, money and support. How do we do this? Well most of us work two or three part time jobs in order to carve out creative time. I am no exception. I currently work on web page jobs and teach part time. I don't have the luxury to paint at my leisure. And that brings me to the "why I paint". I paint because I have an internal drive to do so. My drive propels me to "stay the course" but sometimes it is sheer determination and tenacity that keeps me going back into that studio day in and day out. When I finish a really physical painting session I feel relieved. I also feel as if I have done battle with the canvas. Isn't it ironic that my song is...."Please Mr. Custer"...and yes I am paying attention to the "guide-posts along the way. Especially the ones that are sometimes given to us by our wonderful cousins on Facebook. Thanks Marissa!

Studio Photos from 3/21-3/23...Enjoy

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