Sunday, December 12, 2010

Watching the Highway Cams (On a Snowy Night)

Watching the Highway Cams (On a Snowy Night), 48" by 36", Oil on canvas, 2010

I tap nervously on the touch pad
back to the screen
where roads blur under the snow
headlights and brakes shining
in the fuzzy darkness
every few minutes
I stop what I'm doing
anch check the screen
hoping to see you driving safely home
I worry as I see trucks and semis
pulled over to the side of the road
getting buried in snow
I watch a video about Richard Serra
and think about how his structures
could hold off the snow and allow you to get home safe

my eyes get itchy and tired
I let my mind slacken and wander
I'm awakened by your text message
"Got home safe <33338"
my heart fills with joy
and I am finally able to rest

The process:
1st pass

2nd pass-ish

3rd pass and then some

4th and 5th pass

maybe 6th, probably 7th

8th and 9th

Monday, November 29, 2010


Fierce! lol Bug eyes and all!

Cosmos Harness

Well . . . here's the final product!
Excuse the lazy paint bucket on the last one :)
What the piece represents is the space around us: our personal space, buffer zone, aura, electro magnetic field, whatever you want to call it. The orbitting circles are meant to make the person wearing it to become conscious of the space that s/he occupies. I wanted to create more and more orbits of varying thickness and sizes but time didn't permit. You get the idea though.

Now that the term is over, it's back to painting! awoooooooo. I've got a couple of canvases on the back-burner that I can't wait to start! :)

Some pictures with me wearing it.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Paintings for a snowy night

Couple of paintings I was working on simulatneously. It always interesting to see what happens when you play paintings off of each other: the contrast in the work helps you to understand it. The motivation behind these paintings were to test my knowledge of line: my relationship with the inherent characteristics of line and how it evokes mood in the painting. Colour plays a significant factor in determining the mood aswell but in these cases, it's really the line that stands out as the main expressive feature.

Metronome, 18" by 24", Oil and charcoal on canvas
A Man in Time, 22" by 28", Oil and charcoal on canvas
Triple-take, 30" by 15", Oil on canvas

Monday, November 15, 2010

Concept discusions

Well! I never thought one of my ideas would be too "conceptual" for an art project. (metronome/pace maker) Mind you, it's a first year intro to sculpture class where the purpose is to familiarize ourselves with process and material not concept (necessarily). Kind of neat though . . . I usually gravitate to the visceral mode of working than the intellectual . . .
But anyways, after discussing things with my prof and ta, we think it would be more beneficial to my understanding of material if I went with the "cosmos harness" idea. Essentially, it's a series of rings that make reference to the edges of my body: my hips and shoulders. I wanted them to rotate and spin around the body but that might not be physically possible. Maquette photos:

I'll also have to think about the joins. It's wood, not cardboard so the joins have to be awesome for this thing to work. Also, I'll have to make sure I have an extra sheet for cutting "test" pieces so they are sweet looking circles. Pretty exciting.

Ike helping me with my maquette :)
The neat stuff you can make with the leftovers!

Thursday, November 11, 2010


So I'm pretty sure that I missed the point of the assignment. I'm to create a sculpture that fits all or a portion of the body. It's more about how the body relates to sculptural form than how the body relates to space. In an abstract way, yes, they are one and the same: form and space, can't have one without the other . . . but I think I leaned too heavy on the space side of things.
So . . .
Here's a couple more ideas:
1. A frame type of thing that would fit snuggly on my shoulders that I would be able to push along the ground. Rethinking free movement.
2. A screen of sorts that blocks out certain portions of my body from view. Creating that contrast of barrier and exposure.

Some interesting possibilities. I'm leaning towards the screen idea because I haven't explored the use of the flat plane in sculpture as much as the linear. Although I did make a linear sculpture from a flat plane hmm . . . boggle boggle :)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Assignment 2 brainstorming

Changing everyday perceptions of how the body moves through and understands space:
How do I relate to space? How do I move through space?
I am the figure, it is the ground. Space is the air and atmosphere up to and around me. I gulp it in when I breathe. I like to walk at a brisk pace. I'm tall so my strides are long. My arms are lanky and I often gaze up at the stars or trees or people or buildings and mountains. I walk to clear my head, to ground myself. I also like to jog. I like to feel the wind blowing past my ears and the steady rythme of my legs pounding away beneath me, propelling me forward. Up and down the streets and sidewalks. Leaping over puddles and crunching dry leaves beneath my sneakers. PROPELLER BELT I take for granted how seemlessly I can move into a room, with the occasional ducking down under a low door frame. I move in and out of rooms, from enclosed spaces to open ones. As I move through space, there's always the accompanying sound of footsteps STOMPER It signals my progress down the hall in a steady rythme. The pitch dependent on the quality of my shoes and the material of the floor. METRONOME TO KEEP PACE I like to take the stairs when ever I can because I like the feeling of my legs pushing me up. I guess it's akin to climbing a mountain. FOOTSTEP COUNTER, SPEED BUMPS I like to skateboard. The average street turns into a playground when you're a skater. The curbs and sidewalks and stairs and (gulp) handrails take on new meanings. An entirely different sensation of space: faster, distant, related to the board and then the body. TINY SKATEBOARDS When I'm groping around in the dark to get back to bed, I'm acutely aware of potentially hazardous objects that I might bump into or stub my toe FEELERS LIKE A LOBSTER OR A CAT'S WHISKERS I'm good at seeing where I'm going. Eyes are very handy for this EYE BLOCKING GLASSES

Monday, November 1, 2010

2nd Sculpture Assignment

"Only For You – A Structure that Fits the Body

For your final assignment you will create a structure that fits all or a portion of your body. The structure is to be made out of wood and may incorporate one other material. The structure is expected to be free standing or use the body as an element of support. Focus should be placed on the craftsmanship of the structure, particularly how the wood is joined together and finished.

The intent of this assignment is to understand the relationship between sculpture and the human form; changing everyday perceptions of how the body moves through and understands space. Think about your materials, process and structure: how do they convey meaning to the viewer? As well as how do you elicit interaction?"

Hmm . . . where to start?

Rebecca Horn
Jana Sterbak
Mowry Baden


Sitters, 27.5" by 35.5", Oil and charcoal, 2010

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Useful to "useless"

Here's the result of my first sculpture assignment.

The useful object was an eggbeater. I was drawn to the negative space that the blades created. A beautiful cone-like space. I was also taken with the implied motion of the blades and decided that movement would also be a main feature of the sculpture. As I was building the piece, a few suggestions were made from my profs that this could take on an organic feel and that it would be much more interesting to vary the repeating blades instead of making them uniform.
A few different things come to mind: fish gills, cello, sound waves, tendrils . . .
I can't wait to see what our next assignment is :)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Working in the metal shop

It is such an amazing feeling. Bending and shaping solid metal with these crazy powerful tools, making it look easy! The sparks flying everywhere, singeing my hoodie, getting down my neck. But the zip cutter (angle grinder: using the edge of the blade) cuts through the stiff and cold sheet metal like its butter. The loud buzzing and hissing of sparks makes my heart thump partially from fear and excitement. It's exhilerating! An hour of cutting (somewhat) straight lines, i was getting quite good with it about half way through. I was able to start to feel the grain (?) of the iron against the blade. I could tell if it was straight or veering off the guidelines I'd drawn. Next I'll have to sand the sides cuz the cuts left some harsh edges and then bend the "blades" and create the negative space and motion that is the crux of the piece. I really, really hope it stands upright lol.
Wooo! So much fun!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Thoughts about sculpture

I'm really enjoying my intro to contemporary sculpture class. I'm learning so much and I love exploring this new medium. What astounds me the most about sculpture is the presense of it: the immediate actuality of the object. It's not an impression of something or a rendering of an idea: it is a real thing! And i'm loving working with my hands. It reminds me of graphic design college and cutting mattes and type and basic forms. It's different from painting because sculpture is less about the emotion and spontaneity of expression and more about form and space.
Here's some sculptors that I like:

Bill Woodrow
Cal Lane (she's from Victoria!)
Richard Serra

Who knows where this will take me. Maybe in 5 years, I'll be making sculptures instead of painting? Maybe I'll be making sculptures of my paintings? Art study is what makes getting up in the morning worth while. (aside from a few other things of course <3)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

All-over Figure

All-over Figure, 31.5" by 39.5", oil and charcoal on canvas, 2010

organic curves and forms
squished together
writhing and pulsating
warm and drippy, sweat
no start or finish

riot of form
sinewy and serpentine
like hair down your back
and tongues salty skin

Monday, September 27, 2010

A few experiments

Here's a couple of experiments I've tried over the past two weeks.
Negative space exercise

Using directional strokes to create space

Gesture vs. contour

Just some musings in paint. I write the ideas down that I get while I'm painting for other paintings. And sometimes they lead to break-throughs and other times (like above) they are just fun to try. I like to try different things with each painting because I've got a long way to go still . . .
I like to paint using bristle brushes because they give those great slashing and scrubbing strokes! I like the sense of energy and life those strokes lend to the painted surface. I paint the figure because it is so expressive and so shocking when the proportions are distorted and changed. I like the idea of multiple images because it questions the definition of time and space in a painting. I like contrasting my colours with greys because I find the greys hold a vibrance that enhances whatever colour is adjacent to it. I like to paint with my canvases tacked up on the wall because this lets me stand further back from it (I have a small place you see :))
And those are my musings on paint!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Now that the dust has settled from the VEAA show, time to get back to work. I've enjoyed a little press and am interested to see the further response to my work from my "client list". But of course, this means I have to keep painting, to do what I've always done. To continue on my path and paint they way that I'm meant to. I won't deny that my motivation is higher knowing that the paintings I make now are more likely to be exhibited than any other paintings in my career . . . but it's still the same process: persistence and enthusiasm . . . and throw in a little fun and jazzy spontaneity for good measure :)
Below are the pieces that will be on display at the VEAG studio, online and at the next exhibition in November(?).
Vulnerable Male
Time Stopped
Spring Cleaning
The Surf and Campfire
Searching Phosphorescence
Inter Play
Should be a very exciting year. There's going to be two more VEAG shows (?) and a possible solo show (?) so I'd better get painting.
Happy September :)