Today in Alyson's Art Biz Blog she talks about the need for artists to create and nurture community. Very timely post for me since I was talking yesterday about the importance to me of the critique group I belong to. So go take a look and also see her "Ten Ways to Nurture Your Community". I'm going to work on this.
How would you nurture your artist's community or what sort of community would you like to have if you created one?
The PDX-WAM critique group (Minus one) Saturday morning my critique group met at my house for talk, food and some critiquing of current work. We're a group of about six or seven members who started meeting in 2004. I had arranged a class with Ann Baldwin to be taught in Portland Oregon and after the class some of the students wanted to keep meeting. And so we have continued on a monthly basis. We work mainly in acrylic and mixed media on canvas in generally abstract ways. PDX stands for Portland and WAM means Women in Abstract Media.
One of the many benefits of this group is that we know we're in a group of people who can talk about art endlessly. Our non-art friends and family eventually roll their eyes and go to sleep. Not so this group!
This Saturday we had a brisk and helpful critique of the art presented. I especially appreciated all the direct and thoughtful suggestions. One of the wonders of a group are the suggestions some of which are as simple as turning the painting upside down. It becomes a whole new atmosphere and why didn't I think of that myself? We tend to get stuck if we're alone in our studios for too long--at least speaking for myself anyway.
Collin has created a nearly 80 page book of our group and our art on Blurb. I'll provide a link when the book is published which should be this week some time.
Here is the next stage (unedited) of the painting I posted earlier. At this stage it's a little difficult to see changes but I see them! I took a photo of the work and made it black and white in iPhoto which gave me some ideas for lightening the top 1/3. I always tend to go too dark and have to use alcohol some time near the end of the final painting. But I'm liking what I see today and will take the painting into the living room tonight and look at it off and on. This is the longest stretch of the painting. Looking and looking some more. I look in a darkened room and from a distance. I review my notes on composition and things to watch for when it's time to edit a painting. For example warm vs cool colors and having a variety of sizes and so on.
Here is a photo of a tree in my yard before the rain started. Since the rain started here in the Pacific Northwest last week, most of the leaves are on the ground now.
I'll be working in the studio tomorrow and plan on adding a progress photo on the painting I talked about in the last post.
My brother visited for a few days and left this morning. We had a good time and spent time in Portland on Saturday and Sunday. The traffic is so much easier downtown on the week ends. We went to the Saturday Market under the Burnside bridge where there is a ton of building or urban renewal going on. Then over to Alberta street to look around at some shops and galleries which is always fun. We also went to The Nines, a new hotel on the top floors of the old Meier and Frank store in downtown Portland. It is now a Macys. They have some interesting art on the 8th floor which is the public floor, with a nice looking restaurant too. All nicely done and light filled since the center of the building is open to a large sky light. I can't believe we didn't go to Powell's book store. Next time.
I am a full time abstract artist living in the Pacific Northwest. I have lived in Oregon, Washington, Alaska and northern California. My favorite is the general Portland Oregon area.
I've been painting for a long time and currently I enjoy painting abstracted landscapes in vivid colors. Many of the paintings are done with acrylic and other mixed water media over a gilded canvas.