The other day I demonstrated my art (I call it Demo Day) at the Gallery on the Hill in Yorktown. Many people get palpitations when they think about someone watching them do their thing – be it a craft or activity. I have done it for so long that it does not phase me a bit. My only issue is that, for the first time in my career, I was at a loss as to what to paint.
As I have said before, I have gone through so many different themes that I have gotten very comfortable painting. Thus re-painting my old art is well within my comfort zone even when I am trying new techniques.
My usual routine in preparing for a demo day (besides collecting all of my tools) is to go through the very same images and reference materials I have used for years until I find something of interest to me today. It can be something that appealed to me in the past or that was unsatisfactory at the time. Maybe I can see a new way to approach an old thing. For example I seem to be known for my work in color, but I am just as enthusiastic about black and white. In fact I have a collection of black and white paintings (like this one) that I never exhibit because I don’t want to part part with them. However, there will be several in the forthcoming November 5 show at the Town Center Club in Virginia Beach. All the black and white paintings in the upcoming show involve women.
Back to today and my demo. so in my car I have a card table, a platform to put on the card table, a drop cloth, and my trusty tools of the trade – acrylic paint, brushes, a few canvases and, of course, my trusty reference files.
After I set up, I cull through my materials and decide how I would like to start. There may be people already in the building, but perhaps not. It doesn’t matter.
I am thinking I will begin to play around on sketch paper with some black and white female dancer images. I will be trying to stretch my imagination so that they are not a realistic copies of my photos or photos of old art. Since my husband and I took ballroom dance lessons for three years, I have been able to totally immerse myself into the dance forms. So it is not a stretch to do a single dancer.
I will be trying to integrate my dancer into the background. Believe me it is much easier to do a cut out form with exact edges. This will be a good starting off place since I would be feel free to paint loosely just to warm up and then I could make a photocopy of each of my pieces and start to add color using a different colors on each.
Then I will decide whether to do a more complete finished and probably larger image on canvas. Or if that is not successful today I will choose to do something else. I can also paint over an image that is on photo paper where I photograph my paintings and then played with the resulting copy to perhaps create another design or different colors.
This particular day was so beautiful I chose to paint outside where I had the opportunity to talk to folks while I painted. And I do talk. By the end of the day I am exhausted. And usually very unhappy with my day’s art. oh well, it was still a beautiful day.
Hope to see you on Friday, November 12… Click on the image below for all the details.