Posts Tagged ‘Art’

Sour and Sweet

May 15, 2008

A few weeks ago, I started this still life at a workshop given here by Bruce Williamson, a visiting artist/teacher from Texas. Unlike the other members of our class who used oils, I was working in acrylics.

Bruce would begin each class with a demonstration ( think of it as You Tube LIVE ).

As a visual learner, and aren’t most artists, I gained so much by watching him begin to fill in spaces. And hear his mental process, not because we were psychics but because Bruce, while working, was telling us how he translates what he sees into what he applies.

By the time his demo was over, it was midday and the sun was directly on top of us which gave our still life set-up the very sharp shadows as you can see in the photo.

It also very nicely baked my paints into a abstract form on my palette, much faster than I could paint. That’s the Sour in the title.

But I liked the beginnings. It taught me to work fast and not over think each stroke. I took it home and worked on it in the studio, using the photo as a reference ( what did we do before digital cameras??).

How we look at shadows- they’re not one color. There are at least 6 colors in each object and its’ shadow. The true color, the mid-tones of the true ( or local ) color, the shadow of the object, the shadow of the object reflected on the surface, and finally the best part- the little highlight on the true color that gives the object its’ “ping “.

Who could have known you’d need an abacus to tally the contents of your work while you’re having at it!!

Art is math. Art is science. And some darn fine teaching too.

This is what I finished in the studio.

-I’m very happy with the lemon. I adjusted the pear to be more grounded into its’ axis- it wasn’t leaning authentically. The apple, well, I’m learning to compensate for how acrylics dry darker than you think they will but I’m not into overworking this piece anymore.

What I did get out of it was a sense of having fun while doing it. I haven’t done a still life in a very long time.

How pedestrian, to be living in the Caribbean and presenting you with a trio of fruit you could find in a convenience store on the interstate! But mango season is coming right up and hopefully may compensate your disappointed eyes.

Eat Your Veggies!

December 28, 2007

tobago-blog.jpg -These are The Tobago Market Ladies, an 11″X14″ work in acrylic. Long before produce was called produce, they were simply known as “Vegetables”. Everyone grew their own and picked what they needed for the day’s meal. Our food is already a week old when we get it, having been strangled in shrink wrap during it’s travel here.

We’re fortunate to have several places on St Croix where fresh food can be found-
Southgate Farms on the East Road has done so much for raising the bar of awareness of fresh, wholesome, organic produce. We’re all so grateful to Luca Gasperi and his crew for bringing quality to our table.

bok-choi.jpg-The La Reine market, just off Centerline Road near the Kingshill Post Office, although only open on Saturdays, not only provides a varied selection of vegetables, like this bok choi, ( photo courtesy of the very talented Judy Lobo ) but unusual fruits, and some of the best local hot sauces and fruit preserves.
These ladies know how to put up fruit so forget Smuckers and buy something made on someones’ stove from their grandmothers’ recipe.

-Fairly new is the VI Farmers Cooperative, located on the road between Midland and East Airport Road, just South of Annaly Farms. They are selling locally grown vegetables on Saturdays.

-Most exciting is the VI Sustainable Farm in Frederiksted. Last weekend, the guest chef was Frank, the culinary machine behind Bacchus restaurant- his pride for the past 11 years before giving it up for a well deserved change. Luckily for us, he can’t stay away from the kitchen too long. He served a great dinner featuring our very own local Senepol cattle. No antibiotics, free grazing.

-And if after all this healthy food discussion, you still disdain vegetables, see what else you can do with them here:

Water Falls

November 29, 2007

waterjugblog-copy.jpgWater falls, water’s carried. This is a painting that sold last year at my first solo show here on St Croix called Water Jug. Living on this rock in the midst of the Caribbean Sea, water is a preeminent factor in everyones’ life. We so take for granted that you turn on a faucet and water comes out on demand- as much as you want, and for as long as you want. Not here. Our water collects from the roof, from the rain that falls and gets funneled into cisterns located under the house. Think of them as 10,000 gallon fish tanks, but without the fish. It makes you realize that there is a finite quantity. Everyone here cheers and smiles when it rains. We love when the water falls!
bathsblog.jpgThe above photo is a place that’s little known here on the Northwest end of St Croix called affectionately ” The Baths “. Here, the water falls over the rocks into the tide pools on the other side of the sea. Crystal clear, no more than 8-9 feet at its’ deepest, calm and warm and mostly private. It’s a good 45 minute walk/hike to reach it and once you do, you feel transported into your own travelogue.