Saturday, May 28, 2011

Letter form Painting 01

Letterform Painting 01, 24" by 36", acrylic on board, 2011
Here's a new painting. I consider it as more of a thought piece than as an actual "finished" work.
I like the idea of using earthtones. I can evoke a sense of the organic while using machine-smithed forms (even though most typefaces are designed with the idea of idealized handwriting as their foundation). But you generally don't relate letterforms to living things (unless you like to use the font called Critter), so this has that unexpected-in-the-mundane aspect to it. Aspirations to make a sculpture or installation where viewers can walk into the counterforms (negative space) of the letters. Claes Oldenburg-type letters half sunk into the ground. Long frieze-like murals. Do I break out of the horizontal matrix, would it be "read" as letterforms then?

Thursday, May 26, 2011

I Heart Abe Books

A few of the recent jems that I purchased online on Abe Books!
What Painting Is, James Elkins
Vitamin D: New Perspectives in Drawing, Phaidon
Vitamin P: New Perspectives in Painting, Phaidon

I think that I'm going to be quoting from these books very often in the near future :)
Thumbs up lol!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Group Exhibition!

June 2nd-18th 2011
The Bay Center, 1150 Douglas Street Level Two
Opening Reception
Thursday, June 2nd 2011 6pm-8pm
The Bay Center, 1150 Douglas Street Level Two
Please join us for refreshments at this unique opening reception featuring exciting works by Catherine Moffat, David Hunwick, Tony Bounsall, Pete Kohut and Marilyn Peeters.

I'm going to be doing a demo that evening :) should be fun!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Urban Landscape 02

Urban Landscape 02, 36" by 24", acrylic on canvas, 2011
This painting is a continuation of the idea of urban space. I intended to make a picture that wasn't "painterly" but as you can see, I couldn't refrain from leaving my touch on it. I remembered that painting is more like alchemy and not a science experiment: you can plan all you want, but the piece is gonna force you to make intuitive decisions and come alive . . . whether you want it to or not.
The fence from the previous painting has become the grid (rigidity, conformity, order, the fuzz . . .) and the tag letterforms have evolved into more organic shapes. Chaos vs. order. Science and alchemy. Restrictions and freedom. Dualities abound.
And oh . . . i love those "post-modern drips!" :D

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Letter form painting

One of the major things I learned in Visual Arts this year is that drawing is a form of measuring and rationalizing the world around us. When you're drawing something "out there" you a quite literally measuring the size and proportions of it (either consciously or not). You gain an understanding of what you are studying before you and it becomes a part of your experience.
This concept intrigues me. It's so simple and fundamental. And yet, my mind is racing as to what I can do with this thought. Immediately I think of the grid and how it relates to the picture plane (as you'll see in my latest painting . . . once it's finished lol). Then I think of perspective drawings and think about how it would be interesting to put the "flatness" back into a 3d perspective (flat sculptures? made to look like they are volumous when they aren't?). By day, I'm a graphic designer and I work for a book publisher. I design and layout covers (sometimes illustrating them) but most of my time is spent flowing the interior text, adjusting the spacing so it reads smooth (and looks purdy), and input changes. Letterforms are allready finding their way into my work by means of the abstracting tags . . . why not incorporate the letterforms that are truely geniune to my daily experience: typefaces! More specifically: Adobe Gararmond (our workhorse in the office). Other elements arise with this idea: "reading" a painting (like asian scroll paintings), leading the eye in a structured way (messing with the usual baseline grid of a block of text), letterform as meaning in itself (abstracting in enough so it's not quite a letter but not quite a cool-looking blob), reinforcing the counterform of the letter (the white or negative space around it), and others.
Christopher Wool
John Baldessari
Jasper Johns (of course)
Harland Miller

Monday, May 9, 2011

Website launch

Hello everyone!
The "beta" version of my website is now live at:

Check it out :)

In painting news, I've been experimenting with masking off shapes created on the computer and then projected onto the support. It's a very different technique from what I'm used but I'm really enjoying it. I hope to have my newest painting finished and posted within the next few days.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Still meandering

Still working on some new ideas. I'm also finding out how time consuming making paintings with masks is. But I'm really enjoying the results: pristine and clean edged shapes. So ready to be smudged and roughed up!
I'm currently working on a piece that is a continuation of the urban landscape done in my painting class a couple of weeks ago. The idea has changed into something more elemental: order vs chaos. The barbed wire fence has morphed into a grid that lies under the shapes instead of infront. The tagged letterforms have been manipulated on the computer and then projected onto the picture plane. At present they feel fragmented and displaced but that may be because they are just the initial block-ins. I'm trying to keep my "painterly" had out of the picture but it may need something to unify the forms. Maybe the grid will keep them together.
So several meanings start to arise when you have freeforms suppressed by a grid: personal inhibition, our own existential limitations (ie. we can't fly or teleport instantly to another part of the world), our personal boundaries or self-defining qualities, the could-haves should-haves etc. The list goes on. Even the idea that I'm experimenting with these non-painterly methods may feel like restriction compared to how I usually paint. The desire for a bohemian life vs. fiscal responsibility.
 . . . perhaps I should narrow it down a bit lol

"A painting is done when you can't tell which colour is ontop of which."
-What Painting Is, James Elkins