Monday, 30 July 2007

Inspire Me Thursday: Open Topic

Here's another painting that will go into the show... Recollection: Finding Inspiration in Everyday Miracles. While standing in line for a concert at the Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles, I spent my time photographing the building's beautiful Art Deco lines and ornaments. Clad in stone slabs the color of copper patina, with bronze fluted doorways, and inlaid marble floors, the building offers so many gorgeous examples of Art Deco motifs that I could spend the whole afternoon exploring each one.

However, in the whole batch of photos, my favorite turned out to be something rather mundane... a reflected view of Wilshire Boulevard and Western Avenue, the Metro station and some dilapidated buildings, with the Hollywood Hills in the far distance. Viewed as reflected on the tinted glass of the doors, the scene took on the aura of a Hopper painting, with all the seedy parts softened and filtered.

The painting is a work in progress... but I thought I'd post it anyway.

Details: "View of Wilshire Boulevard," original painting, acrylic on canvas, 18x24, 2007.

Wednesday, 18 July 2007

"Library Park"

In preparation for an upcoming art show, I decided to explore the neighborhood with an eye toward depicting our local landmarks the way children would see it. So I spent a morning following my little boy around Library Park, which was a daunting task because he doesn't really slow down to take in the sights.

Here are two paintings which will be included in the show. I tried to capture the contrast of deep shadows and bright sunlight, and how the environment, though still and serene, was alive with movement and possibility. The exposed roots of the magnolia tree in the first painting inspire never-ending fascination for my son, who has been climbing them since he was barely able to walk. Just around the corner, the library entrance (now used as a community room) was the site of countless climbing sessions, up and down the steps, right before the weekly toddler story time.

These are landmarks we pass each day on the way to Trader Joe's, the post office, or the ice cream parlor, and it's been great fun to capture them in this way.

Sunday, 8 July 2007

"Inspire Me Thursday": Seven

I keep hearing that a day as auspicious as 7/7/07 only comes once each century and it appears that there were a record number of weddings and trips to the casinos yesterday. For me, the luckiest thing about July 7, 2007 was that millions of people tuned into a Live Earth.

Though our prompt for the week, "seven," calls to mind images of luck and well-being, I realized that the direction of our lives relies more heavily on the choices we make, rather than simply the luck of the draw. These musings led me to this sketch... a crossroads at which I hope we all take the ramp which will lead us to where we most want to go.

Happy trails!

Wednesday, 4 July 2007

"Inspire Me Thursday" : Light

This week's "Inspire Me Thursday" prompt is "light" and I chose to do a painting based on the view from my hotel in Paris. On the last morning before returning home, I got up at dawn and watched the sun rise. Unfortunately, the view of the rising sun was less than stellar from my window, only rewarding me with hazy sky and very thin light.

I was struck, however, by a single spot of brilliant light pouring from the windows of a shop down the street --- how the light bounced off the wet sidewalk, how the deep shadows masked the contours of the cafes and boutiques, how the buildings grew rosier by the minute as the sun finally rose --- all of these impressions are an indelible part of my Parisian experience.

This painting is still in progress and I'm excited to include it an an upcoming show called "Recollection: Finding Inspiration in Everyday Miracles." I'm sure it was just an ordinary morning in St. Germain des Pres, but for me it's a very precious memory.