Friday, June 18, 2004

Good studio day. Stopped by the store and bought a case of water to drink in the studio. Once I got there, I decided that I needed to get some new music to listen to so I wandered over to A.K.A Records on 3rd Street. Wound up with a couple of good cds, one of which is Laurie Anderson's 2-disk live set from 2001. On my way back to the studio, I passed by Old City Coffee and the owners/husband and wife teams of two Old City galleries , Gallery Joe and Larry Becker Contemporary, were chatting. I talked to Larry Becker briefly and continued on. Once back inside the first thing I did after changing clothes was to lay a layer of color on the two 36"x60" canvases I stretched last week. It would take a while for them to dry so I decided to do some stuff on paper. I wound up with four small (10"x12") mixed media pieces using primarily gouache, colored pencils, graphite and acrylic paint.

I referred to my sketchbook for compositional ideas and was surprised at how many sketches I'd done over the past 8 months or so. I keep it with me almost all of the time. All those boring moments at work have added up. There's a lot of material to work with and that makes me a happy artist. The sketches are just that, small, simple compositional ideas. I usually only use a black, thin-tipped Sharpie although on the rare occasion, like today, color finds it's way onto the pages.

As I worked, I began to think about just how much work I could possibly get to using just the sketches I have as starting points. There's rarely a linear progression of sketch to drawing to painting in my work habits. It does happen, but more often the resulting paintings are an amalgam of various influences. Most often, as was the case today, I'll flip back and forth through the book and will wind up combining different aspects of a couple of drawings to produce another work, be it on paper or canvas.

I left the studio with a renewed sense of excitement about what's possible with my work. It's taken me a while but the battery is definately charged up and ready to power another period of high creativity.

Today's studio soundtrack:

-Stephane Pompougnac: 'Hôtel Costes'
-Laurie Anderson: 'Live at Town Hall, New York City, September 19-20, 2001'
-Tomas Jirku: 'Entropy'
-Modest Mouse: 'Good News for People Who Love Bad News'
-Davide Carbone: 'BS1 Records-Chapter One'
-Bits and pieces of NPR

Thursday, June 17, 2004

It's been tought returning to a regular studio schedule. I've been painting, just not as much as I know I should and can be painting. Since the show in February, my life has been beset by a lot of distractions and it's been difficult to pull the work together. Now, though I think I've gotten to a point where I can think more clearly about what I'm trying to do and getting it done.

It's taken a much longer time than I thought to get my creative concentration back. The few paintings I've produced over the past few months have been fair, at best. I'm now at a place where my creative side is getting stronger after a bit of a lay off. I've been sketching like crazy lately,which is extremely satisfying. I'm begining to generate some good ideas which could lead to good paintings.

I've done some things on paper, but they haven't added up to much at all. Time. That's what I need to put in. Even though I have three days off from work, I'm starting to feel that it's not enough for my work to develop to the next stage. It's interesting that this issue has been a preoccupation for me lately. What's important now is that I spend more time in the studio working. That's all there is to it. Enough time has passed since the show and I'm eager to get the ball rolling on the next body of work. My sketchbook and brain are fiiled to the brim with ideas and the only thing left to do is make them a reality.