Monday, January 4, 2010

Well, we're off....just finishing my first website and am pretty excited about it. I have been painting for many years, but a bit slow to come out of the gate and put my art 'out there'. My goal here is to write at least weekly about the goals, thoughts and challenges of producing fine art.

Over the past few years I have been studying both Western painting (with a focus on watercolor) and Eastern painting. Currently I am focusing in two areas:

1. on life drawing and painting. That translates into both drawing and painting live models. I actually start one of my classes this week and am pretty excited! I will be taking weekly lessons or classes at both the Des Moines Art Center and at a private studio in Gilbert, Iowa. I am challenging myself to keep watercolor as my medium during these classes. Watercolor can be pretty unforgiving, but will hopefully help me to lighten up during these classes.

2. on Asian philosophies as I realize that calligraphy and Chinese brush painting are as much about the process or way of life and thinking as about the product (finished painting). My goal is to blend these two types of painting into an expression that is true to myself.

The past three months I have flown out to California to train with an artist/calligrapher in the Santa Rosa area that has studied Chinese brush painting for years and has trained with Ning Yeh. Her name is Judith Cunningham.

Books and DVDs that I am currently reading and studying from are many. Here are a few on my desk at present:
'Asian Philosophies' by John M. Koller
'Japanese Kanji Calligraphy' by Kunii Takezake and Bob Godin
'The First 100 Chinese Characters' by Allison & Laurence Matthews'
Ning Yeh's series (DVD) on Chinese Flower painting, along with his books- both instructional and illustrational. You can view these on his website at:

Well, enough for now. I hope to start posting some musings and photos (whether good or bad!) of either Chinese brush painting or paintings of live models.

Blogging these thoughts is new to me; so please feel free to give me feedback. I look forward to this adventure!

back to the studio.....

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