I was a poor poor art student when I decided to start a blog documenting the process of my paintings, photography, drawings and journaling. Now a recent art grad, not much has changed other than the label and maybe a change of scenery.

December 18, 2010


Although it may not appear to be true, I am in fact very hesitant and self-conscious when it comes to writing about art or my own artwork. sometimes it's artist statements and the daunting task of trying to put all the context that's on canvas now into words. other times i have this idea of how something should sound (articulate and fancy frou frou words) and trying to write that way while still attaching my style and dignity to the written piece. sometimes it's hard "fitting in into the art world" while people may seem non-conformist there are rules that all applicants should "try" and apply to. but i'd be just as happy to be upfront and narrative like i am on this blog......anyways i've been in this reminiscent mood lately (now in my 6 month post-grad morning period) and i came across a paper i did in painting II circa 2008. it was a reflective assignment on an abstract painting that was due the day of critique. and i decided to start painting/writing the night before (shocker). but in 5 years, it's one of those essays i enjoy reading every once and awhile. i wrote it alone at night outside the painting lab, sitting against a cold brick wall on the laminated applied arts floor. it was one of those moments where, there wasn't lapse of judgment, rather a constant surge of thoughts and words that fell into place. a paper that was natural and in return was i proud of. so i wanted to ctrl+c, ctrl+v into my blog in hopes that i start writing this way, the way i want and not what i believe others expect.

Painting II

Well, right now I can say that my canvas isn’t very far ahead. In fact, to be honest (which you probably won’t be glad to hear or see tomorrow) it’s pretty blank. And I can’t say too much for my idea or plan for this assignment either. It’s as though I have hit a brick wall. A really big brick wall. We’re talking huge and it’s one that I can’t get over, up, around or under.

You say to just put paint on the canvas. Just jump right in and go for it. It sounds easy enough, but it’s probably the hardest thing for me. I’m used to a plan. An idea. Or my greatest and worst tool…painting from a picture. When I have that, and I like it, I have more confidence in the piece that I am about to create rather than having no direction at all. And I think that’s the hardest thing when it comes to abstraction. It’s important to paint what you see, and not what you know. Just how do you do that with abstraction? You don’t. It’s all in the head, basically. And my head lately feels like there’s more occupied storage than empty space. So what’s one to do? What am I supposed to do if I have no clue where I’m heading? Apparently, hire a detective…

So maybe through this abstraction assignment I will be able to see that not having a set plan is not such a dreadful thing. Yes, maybe at the beginning I will be eating those words. But, maybe once I progress to the middle and the completion of the painting things will come together. Or this project could fall apart. So really, while I fear abstraction, I think my biggest obstacle is just starting the painting process.
But when I think of abstraction, I think of bold solid colors with geometric shapes and overlapping. And I don’t know if that’s so much me. I love brushstrokes, thick paint, lots of different colors and movement. I don’t want to lose that. So another thing I hope to learn in this project is how to keep that style but use it to a different subject matter. I want to find ‘my own’ idea of abstraction. One that I am confident in. Something that still says, “that’s something Kiley wouldn’t normally do, but you can tell she did that.”

But maybe I’m jumping ahead. Just maybe this project will show me something I never expected to learn about my abilities. Until then though, I will not consider abstraction my friend, nor my enemy either. I’ll just call it an acquaintance for the time being.

November 15, 2010

my reality vs. actuality

recently i've wanted a studio space with lots of natural light (grandiose windows). not sure why that is, since i'm out of bed at 11 am and don't really start being productive until 2 or 3 pm. after this time, i proceed to procrastinate to start the creative process until i "feel like it". those who know me, know this. they also mock me about this, but i can't fault them for their acute awareness of my habits.

i'm the type of artist that can't start working usually until after dinnertime. like 6 or 7. preferably when it's dark out. and when no one else is around. isolation, yes, that is key. and normally when it's fall or winter, the cold drives me inside to sit, look and think. but now it's winter, and i don't go to school. i go into a garage, or lay on my couch. the atmosphere has changed, and so i must acclimate to this.

September 15, 2010

late night thoughts

i've realized i'm a seasonal person. while some may relate that to my job position, it actually has to do with the environment i live in. for instance, i am happy when it's sunny and melancholy when it's rainy. i enjoy being out during the summer, footloose and carefree. and while i'm sad it's over and still don't want to come to terms with the fact that fall is here, i do realize i get more into a creative hibernation mode right around this time. it could be that my internal clock is programmed to school mode and right about now i'd be biting at the bit to come up with a concept to show for my first critique. however, i'm in central me time zone so i'm goin' my own pace. i'm just drawing and my skills are rusty without the reliance of a projector, but so far it's been a good challenge. i have the right music helping me along and i feel like i could get used to it.

the incubat'or.
reversed image via webcam.

this is about 1.5x2 ft big canvas that i made in the spring. i used rabbit skin glue seal coating the canvas without the use of gesso. it's a little uneven and now a tad dirty from the move, however i'm trying not to care. perfectionism isn't something i'm harping on this time around (at least not right now).

August 15, 2010

botanical bizzness

a few months back i went on a bike ride here in the burbs and stumbled upon a fantastic trail that led me to fantastic wildlife. nothing exciting like redwoods or waterfalls, more like prairie grasses and native minnesota flowers. the first time around i sketched them fast and later applied gouache to the drawings. now i'm thinking this could go somewhere. since i enjoy doing it & it doesn't take an insane amount of time to complete, i want to create little paintings and put them in custom designed second hand frames.
second bike ride i took pictures, i haven't identified them yet but will soon.

i'm not sure if it'll be better to paint from life or photograph, so that's something to experiment on. my real goal here is to shoot for simplicity. don't overstate what's there. they're flowers, how more complicated should that get?

taking a picture on top of a high hill (and perhaps catching my breath) check out the yellow tree.

August 11, 2010

location location location.

i got the chance to see a fellow coworker and artist Michaela's art show at this japanese restaurant in uptown called moto-i. i've gone to uptown "area" since i was little. i always asked my mom to lock the doors because well lake street has street cred as a bad hood. however, it seems that you hop a few streets over and you've reached the current artist mecca.

i'm living at my mom's until i can get my act and benjamins together. so i've been in the suburbs outside of the cities, disconnected from people my age, art shows going on and anything that relates to things i really enjoy. sure i can walk into a mcdonald's without looking behind my back or walk to my car alone, but it doesn't matter where you are shit happens.

so like i said, went to uptown just a few streets down from where i normally venture. it's weird. one side there's a white castle and people waiting under a bus station and the other side it's all youthful white hipster people smoking outside trendy bars and roof top restaurants. i don't like describing these displays of cliches however i'm an observant person and observance means documenting my accounts.

the reason i'm so critical is because being in the "art scene" i've noticed that people don't want to conform. they want to express themselves as an individual and be set apart. but all i saw in that area, in that bar is conformity. all i saw was thick rimmed glasses, flannel, beards, and the current blasting in my ear. and i always thought i wanted to be in that area, but i'm wondering if i would just add to the population (seriously i felt like i was in an urban outfitter store). would i change as well to fit in? or would i feel out of place, like i did at that uptown bar tonight?

maybe this could become a series (always turning that bigger question into art) or maybe i shouldn't care. all i know is, i'm currently undecided. what's new.

i'm more motivated than i seem.

i was having a few drum solo's during stapling. i think my neighbors are starting to question my sanity as well as my college degree.

cleanliness is godliness. why my mother doesn't trust me, i'll never understand.

having a weekday off isn't always horrible. sure i miss out on the parties and happenin' things goin' on duing a fri/sat/sun, but there are upsides to having your weekend start on a wednesday and end on a thursday. like there's better television shows on, the lines aren't as long wherever you go and everything seems more relaxed.

today being declared an art day, i stretched the canvases and put tape around the sides. then around 11 pm i gessoed the tops (in air conditioning). it went pretty smoothly. i never used to appreciate making stretchers and gesso'ing, i saw it as a tedious process and a detour towards the ultimate destination of painting. but now, as my carpentry skills grow, i realize i actually enjoy the process. instead of slapping together some pieces of precut bought wood from dickblick, i get to make decisions and use my perfectionist qualities and make sure everything is flawless. i don't trust many people when it comes to handling my artwork and this is just another situation in that case. besides why would i want to give up that zen/relaxed feeling? in the end the hard work normally pays off.

tomorrow is another day off...time for ideation/conceptual/sketching process. maybe after some fun summer outdoor activities though, gotta get my intake of vitamin d.

August 4, 2010

oh those summer days.

oh hey, if you still follow this blog you'll notice that the updates have been non-existent since may. about 3 months. what can i say? after a big transition like senior show, graduation, moving out of wisconsin, moving back to minnesota, working almost 40 hours a week...there have been just a few changes...and the excuses go on, but the posts remain stagnant.

here's to changing that. my professor tamara said i spoke tentatively and since then i have made it a point not to do that. and trying not to sink into post-grad depression, there are tentative moments to be had. but my main goal right now is to not worry about work that's going to land me in shows or is conceptually developed (i have some, but you don't think i'm gonna spill them on here do you?)...and just paint. which in all honesty, is nice not to have pressure of a deadline or people looking over at my space seeing what i'm going to paint next. so i'm going to start small paintings (oil and gouache) of still lifes and flowers and sell them for some small cash. etsy, or something like that. and paint on stretchers and small pieces of paper. here's the pictures of probably the most motivating day i have had this summer.

like mother, like daughter.

connie is a craftswoman and i am simply a schmoozer.

all of this wood and soon to be stretched canvas are all scraps and small pieces left over from larger projects. since i'm confined to a smaller space, have a tight budget of no-cash and have to share my space with my parental, it's probably the right thing to do. stay tuned for more pics of what's going to be put on the surface....

May 11, 2010

something to remember

c.m.l. - you understand still life, you're still working on the figure...it's not fluent to you. you may speak french fluently, but your swedish is a little rusty (aka the figure).

May 10, 2010


the time is done.
painting is over.
and for some reason i feel indifferent.

i didn't finish my duck painting. one of my mentor's, deb, told me you will see how hard it is to paint after your show. i thought, no way i've got a picture that i want to paint and i think it will be great. everything will be smooth.

these past 3 weeks have not been smooth, rather difficult to motivate myself to have a brush touch paint touch canvas. i've been enjoying the things that i got to miss out during that time that i was in the studio. do i feel better about it? have i gained anything? yes.

so now i'm done and maybe i should be missing painting. just reading some of my blog posts of the nights where i was in that studio alone, made me realize what a journey it has been. and even telling myself i would miss it. but i don't think i am ready to miss it yet. i think a break is called for. a vacation. but if i'm reading this later down the road, here's a warning for you (kiley): don't give up painting. don't let your procrastination/laziness be the barrier to make great work. things will be and are different, but with change comes new perspective. you will and must paint again.

like i said, i don't miss painting yet. i miss being in the studio with friends or i miss the moment when i was finished with a painting. i miss my space even though i loathed it most of the time. i miss walking out of that applied arts building with the cold air hitting my face and knowing tomorrow was another day to tackle the daunting task of finishing that painting. that's what i miss right now.

this is the song for today, don't ask me why. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tmjPrdTNxQ0

May 7, 2010


Lately, I haven't been painting, but this doesn't mean I haven't been working. I actually have been quite diligent on scratching things off my to-do list, a portfolio being one of them. It's not necessarily required as a fine artist or for my major, however incase I go into different avenues other than painting I want to show my abilities in other mediums, that being photography and adobe skills. If you can't tell, I've really enjoyed working on this (graphic design in the future perhaps?) and I hope it shows. So here is the finished product...questions, criticism, comments please let me know.

April 30, 2010


note to self:

i am going to experiment with timing. most of the time i hate being rushed, because i don't get time to gather my thoughts and process what is in front of me. this makes the anxiety go up.

but this year, having time to paint has allowed me to paint overpaint, and in my eye ruin the painting.

i have been trying to go back constantly to the painting i did of my father in the kitchen. i was able to paint and let it be. i put a mark down and left it for the most part. my perfectionism and super-ego weren't a problem. why is that so hard for me to get back to? charlie says it's a good battle, but again i am torn being conflicted between the particular and the expressive quality of laying marks down. i'm wondering if i can combine these, or if i will constantly have this struggle in my artist and personal life?

so goal for duck painting:

look at painting.
mix color pallet.
paint for 1 1/2 hour only.
look at it.
make small adjustments.
be done.

gosh, just typing those words makes me nervous.

April 23, 2010

5 years.

i talked today to charlie about my reflection after my show. he said he was glad to hear my thoughts since i normally just listen to him talk and smile ha. it's true though, certain times i will speak but only when proven necessary (not just with charlie, i'm speaking in life in general).

he asked me where do i see myself in 5 years. i quietly said a job, painting...?

he said dream big, because if you dream small you will be confined to that vision.

i wanted to say i wasn't sure, that even though i had this great show, a part of me still feels defeated entering the real world.

the answers

charlie had us write reflective answers about our show. it was pretty cathartic, so have a read if you dare.

What have you learned from producing this body of work?

The past few months I did nothing but live and breath painting. I was in the studio every chance I got and when I wasn’t, I actually felt guilty that I wasn’t painting. I put aside friends, family, activities, and events, to be the last one in that lonely studio every night. However, I’m not sure if I was painting for the sake of painting or because I was in love with it. Rather towards the end, I started to feel like a factory worker. I began to question myself a lot and asked why I started painting in the first place and why was I painting now? The reason for some of this could’ve been the time crunch and the goal to have new paintings in my show. I didn’t have to do that, but I felt like I needed to build my portfolio and stop relying on my old work. One day after little sleep and when my painting was going to hell, it was stated that my super-ego was a bastard. And while it was a humorous statement, I realized how much maybe that was crippling me. This recent process of painting showed me that being overly judgmental and hard on myself was making me dislike painting and my work in general. Producing this body of work also showed me what my limits were. I realized what I could do in three months and what I should’ve probably given more consideration during the previous semester. It showed me that I can push myself, but the extremes of no sleep and not taking care of myself physically/mentally in the long run hurt rather than helped. I also learned that I should consider what is important in the painting. Should it be the background and the objects, or should it be the figure? I believe this new work sparked this question and hopefully with my next body of work some answers will emerge.

What have you learned from exhibiting this body of work?
Showing in a gallery, I feel, was the crème de la crème of my higher educational experience at Stout. I’ve seen a lot of seniors come and go, some good work and some bad in that gallery and always wondered what it would be like to have my artwork on the walls. Seeing my work in a professional space, an actual series instead of just one piece, it was surreal. It felt like I had finally reached a climax of my education and the hard work was worth it. As far as the body of work I showed, I have mixed feelings. I’m really proud that I got 4 new paintings done for a show. I’m happy that they were on display and that I was vulnerable to criticism and dislike from my colleagues. I’m happy I showed a body of work that was personal, but had meaning that the viewer could relate to. I would probably say that displaying my artwork if anything showed me my strengths and weaknesses in painting. In addition, by exhibiting my work I also saw how old/new paintings stood next to each other and how I have changed in just the past year with my technique.

What new goals do you have for your studio work?

My goals now would be to produce work with a drive that I had before my show. Being in the studio, completely absorbed in the process was utterly exhausting, but incredibly rewarding. I think I need to find a new way to stop seeing painting or the studio as a chore or a lonely place…how I’ll do this I’m not sure. But I know my habits and routine will have to change once I graduate and I am on my own.
I hope to be more experimental, not afraid to ruin my paintings, I want to go back to the root of why I started painting and experiencing that freedom which I feel like I have been missing this whole year. I’m excited to not have expectations on my work or criticism (I suppose I’ll miss that…maybe) and not have limitations that I feel viewers at Stout and I myself have put on my art. I’m just ready to paint, get messy and make anything and everything.

How will this experience help you as a future artist?

I’ve never really been one for wanting to things to end, I’m always sad when they do. But putting my artwork up, hearing people’s thoughts and taking it down was probably the best closure I have ever experienced. It’s hard to get over, because it seemed too short for all the time and preparation that was put into the show. But it also gave me a newfound energy for wanting to have my work displayed in galleries. These past couple of years I have seen myself as a student rather than an artist. But showing with two other fantastic painters and seeing my work against those lovely white walls, felt like I had matured into an artist. This experience also gave me confidence in being a fine artist. The past few years I have heard, “Studio, painting, what are you going to do with that?” I have allowed other people’s negative perceptions seep into my own thoughts and have become discouraged in the process. But after our show, I realized there is room out there in the world for a fine artist like myself. It may not be easy, but I feel more determined than I did before.

April 21, 2010

back jack

after a long hiatus from the studio (two weeks, that's long in studio terms), and after my show i am back in action. i'm going to finish my last piece, it's going to be roasted ducks that we witnessed at the chinese market on lake street. if you haven't tried roast duck or pork, might i suggest you do. i've gotten mixed reactions from this image (ew, the heads are still on) but you know one bite and you'll forget that thing was ever quacking by a pond.

also, i am going to to attempt (yes tentatively speaking there's only about 3 weeks until i walk on that stage in a cap and gown) to paint little studies, either copying or using the technique of a new artist tamara introduced me to by the name of Nathan Ford. He's an English oil painter and i am in love. his colors, his marks, his confidence in leaving the painting finished when enough is stated. i want to meet him, hell i want to be him. here are some pictures and here is his link: http://www.nathanford.co.uk/he will also be in this show coming up http://www.victorfelixgallery.com/artist/Nathan-Ford.htm

the photos.

ah, this was about 2 weeks ago. best time of my life. if groundhog day only applied to this installation. it was such a priviledge to work with two great people who are great artists and friends. i just can't say enough what a good experience it was, how well it turned out and how all the sleepless nights (did i mention i was up until 5:30 that morning of setup and we met there at 8?) were worth it. so excuse me if i reminisce, because i'm going to.

April 4, 2010

you could be happy.

i'm sitting in gallery 209 as we speak. trying to write my artist statement (or revise it i should say) and am coming to the realization that this is finally happening. these past few months have been nothing but tears, sweat, mixing and paint. and now, to see my paintings, new and old hanging on the white walls...it's weird. what artist is always happy with their art? you see problem areas, things you should've fixed, but in the end everyone is their own worst critic. and taking what charlie said about my bastard of a super ego, i'm trying to tell mine to please just let up a little.

i decided to put in old work from last year. much to my discontent, since i was set on having only new work. but as soon as i got the artwork on the wall, there was something missing. enter the big billboard aka dad in the hospital bed. yeah, didn't think i'd see that thing until i had to pack it in the uhaul. but alas, there it is. i see so many flaws, so many different things that i missed. but there are also some real gems in that painting that i am proud of (the oxygen mask, the neckbrace).and i thought it wouldn't relate and it does actually. it's the everyday struggle, the relentless pull, the constant reminder that our bodies age and deteriorate.

looking at my new new paintings next to my old, i realize i'm a different painter than i was last year. i blend more, pay attention to details, and really enjoy painting reflective surfaces. some of my weaknesses would probably getting flesh tones correct and also value. how i've gotten through 5 years of college and not understood value, psh no clue. but that's the nice thing about this show is just knowing that this is the beginning. i don't have to be the best, or perfect, there is time to develop and it's waiting for me as soon as i'm done with stout.

lately i've been wondering what happened in the past few years to change my painting. no, i do not have a style as of yet, but it's on the verge i feel. as i learn more about planes and value, i hope i continue to grow. charlie told me the other day that these new paintings may not be your best paintings but that's okay. he's right, but that's hard to admit. i know that these aren't my strongest pieces, but there's something happening there.

i'm writing this, so i don't forget. forget how these past months of agony (picking this major was my decision might i add) and this day of seeing my work next to two other amazing artists is real. soemtimes (okay a lot of times) i bitch and complain and not sure if i can make it, but as soon as it's over i realize that time i did really enjoy and take away something. i'm still processing all of this so, so it will take some time. but i'm glad the finish line is in plain sight.

March 29, 2010

according to tamara

today i had a quick chat with tamara, a painting professor here at stout.

we were talking about my paintings and my figures and the objects that are in the back. she said, you are definitely a still-life painter.

i thought about that, and i'm not sure when this happened. but i do enjoy painting objects and the details. this could've taken place:

a) when i painted my grandfather's boots, but was too determined to paint people?
b) when tamara assigned us last semester to paint something from life every day, i did little objects and slowly fell in love.
c) subconsciously when i was sleeping one night
d) all thee above

then i said (without thinking) i like painting objects because they're a more forgiving than the figure.

i'm so honest with myself sometimes it's scary. . .

March 17, 2010

take a hint.

today, my painting session was going downhill and i mentioned to my friend that maybe we should go to hoffman hills. she agreed and i said i would be home within 10 minutes. i told myself to clean up, but with my weapon in my hand the brush went to work again. this self-control thing probably isn't my forte, but who's judging?

anyways 15 minutes later, i let my friend know that hoffman hills is out of the picture at the moment. she of course was not surprised to hear my response, only to say i am indecisive and change my mind so often that she's gotten used to it.

ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the world of painting. that's how painting is too, indecisive and forever changing. one minute i'm painting and it's all going well, then a mark is made and it looks like a mistake, wait wait it can be saved only if i do this....dammit no....oh that looks good. that's constantly what i'm thinking in my head. a constant rollercoaster so to speak. just thought i'd share that.

i decided to put a picture since human beings are such visual creatures. no meaning behind it really.

March 11, 2010

make a statement.

i'm coming up to about 3 weeks until my show. freaking out. unsure of what to paint. how to paint. yadda yadda. and throw in having to write an artist statement in there and you've got a breakdown on the verge. but i thought i'd post on here my artist statement for the journal of research, which is a journal here at stout that will be published with images of my work as well as my statement. it's a reminder (that with a little help from professors) that i can make a scary task like writing an artist statement, into something very powerful that will project the message that i am trying to show the viewer.

These paintings are a recollection of narratives from individuals that I have encountered throughout my life who have influenced my art, and are a part of my journey towards self-discovery. In recent years, my focus has grown closer towards the working class. Their daily lives are meant to teach the viewer about an uncelebrated part of humanity. By painting them, I honor their position and acknowledge their presence as a person rather than being seen as someone who is just meant to serve.

My concept of addressing the working class first developed when I made a series of paintings of my grandfather’s boots. They were meant to show a personal narrative of what kind of work day he would he face due to the mental and physical deterioration as he ages. Viewers stated they related to the boots in a personal way. I felt compelled to continue this idea and create a visual language with the audience about subject matters that many working class people confront daily.
Shortly thereafter, my family and I were faced with the dilemma of my father’s health issues caused by years of working in the food service industry.

As I grew up, my relationship with my father was strained because of his absence; he worked long shifts as a line cook. However, seeing my father sink deeper into depression during his lapse of work, or lay helpless in a hospital bed after surgery, allowed me to see him as a human being rather than a parental figure. Since his recovery our relationship has changed. Creating paintings of my father’s story has allowed a better understanding of one another ⎯ he as a provider and me as an artist.

My father’s personal struggles provoked a need to dig deeper into the working class and focus on areas such as race, class, gender, age, and identity. Through my research I have discovered that my father is like millions of people throughout history who have toiled at a job, but received little respect. Even though I did not hold a place in the food industry, my personal experiences of working in customer service also granted me insight into the perceptions of others that a middle-class worker faces. A co-worker of mine once told me about interacting with customers in her workday, she said, “I don't care if they dislike me as long as they're not dismissive of me.”

The painting process is a chance to confront society’s commonality, and counterbalance it with my own perception and sense of justice. The paintings, with their colors, lines and marks are complex and involved, much like the people’s stories I choose to narrate. My method is to first take a photograph of the person, and then transfer it to canvas by drawing as well as mapping out colors with an under painting. This under painting, although covered over, mirrors the complexity and hidden psychology of each person I paint. Lastly, as the brush moves and the final image emerges so do the character’s persona and a reflection of what I see as their true colors. Specifics such as name, age, and class are elusive, however their body language, the setting and the expression on their face are meant to depict an account that goes beyond surface level readings. I leave it to the viewer to wonder if they would recognize this person in a store or a restaurant. Also, I wish for the audience to have an acute sense of awareness, and confront some of realities of humanity, when faced with these paintings.

Kiley Van Note

March 10, 2010

according to charlie

I had a heart to heart with my professor about my paintings lately. They're not going the direction I want them to as of late and with a looming deadline of my senior show upon me, well it's not the best timing. i'm not sure if it's the figure that's pissing me off, if the "honeymoon" of a new painting is over, or if it's just the pressure of my show being so close, but i'm not feeling good about where i'm at right now. During this h2h, i mentioned to charlie that i know i keep a lot of stuff to myself and he said he could tell, everytime. he said he could also tell that my 'super ego is a bastard.' i laughed, at first because he said bastard but then if i was correct, knew that he meant i was incredibly hard on myself and my worst critic. so just to be clear and get the right information on what freud's super-ego is, i, of course wikipedia'd it. Take a look:

The Super-ego aims for perfection. It comprises that organized part of the personality structure, mainly but not entirely unconscious, that includes the individual's ego ideals, spiritual goals, and the psychic agency (commonly called "conscience") that criticises and prohibits his or her drives, fantasies, feelings, and actions.

Damn. Am i that transparent? Apparently. But it was good, to actually talk about it rather than keep all these insecurities about my paintings right now to myself. and now i blog about it? psh, i'm such a hypocrite.

anyways, charlie suggested limiting my amount of work for the show. he suggested doing a'la primas (painting in one sitting) for just an hour or two and getting started on that before i dive into these big tasks like the canvases i'm working on now. i think i'm going to take him up on this offer right now. i'm comfortable what i'm painting, or at least i know what i'm doing so it's not engaging. and i know the viewer can see that. yea, it's good but does it SING? no. right now, it sounds like an alto with the flu.

March 4, 2010

free advertisement.

some of you may or may not know that i have a senior show coming up. i'm showing with some lovely ladies by the names of Katie and Mary. well, if you are able to make it, it's running April 6th - April 9th. Our reception will be held on Thursday, April 8th 2010 from 5-7 pm here at Stout in Gallery 209 in Applied Arts. All are welcome, it's gonna be one heck of a shindig....

If you can't come, that's alright. But at least check out our process blog for the time being:


March 2, 2010

artist's are such romanticists.

I'm reading the book Still Life with Oysters and Lemon for painting III. It's about a man who is captivated by a painting and how his life actually correlates with the still-life.

The author Mark Doty writes:

"I have fallen in love with a painting...I have been drawn into the orbit of a painting, have allowed myself to be pulled into its sphere by casual attraction deepening into something more compelling. I have felt the energy and life of the painting's will; I have been held there, instructed. And the overall effect, the result of looking and looking into it's brimming surface as long as I could look, is love, by which I mean a sense of tenderness toward experience, of being held within an intimacy with the things of the world."

^^^ I read that over and over again, trying to soak it in. This is what I want from painting again.

February 28, 2010

more to see.

here are two other paintings i'm gonna try and do at the same time.....yeah, ambitious. but the underpaintings are done. i'm loving the faces i'm getting when i tell people my show is the beginning of april. c'mon people have some faith. either way i hope to have a good body of work for my show and my portfolio. i want to even do one more still-life.....

this is my dad shopping at an asian store......wild colors eh?

this is my grandma getting some green onion out of the fridge for the dinner she was making at night. i really wanted one portrait looking at the viewer, i feel eye contact is important, it's almost like she's caught in the act. and not being mean, but this underpainting reminds me of the artist who paints these dogs....no my grandma does not remind me of a dog, just the style.

February 24, 2010

6 days, 6 nights
1.5' x 2', on canvas

Here is the final image of the painting of my dad and his family on their boat after escaping vietnam. i really enjoyed the process of this painting,from the sky to the waves of the water. for it being my first landscape i would say i succeeded. i am also happy with the idea of space and the sense of fear and hope that is instilled in the painting. in critique today, charlie mentioned that i give information to draw the viewer in, but after that i leave the choice to the viewer to decide what this painting's meaning is about. and i liked that comment and believe that's important as a painter. expect to see this in my senior show APRIL 6TH-9TH, 2010. that's right, that was a total plug in.

now, on to the next painting(s).

February 19, 2010

feelin a lil' blue

here is the boat painting that i am trying to finish for monday's critique. it's about 1'1/2"x2'. it's done from a picture of my dad and family escaping Vietnam. it's a very old, blurry photo, but that's what attracted me to it in the first place. i'll post final pics soon w/ more details.