Sunday, January 25, 2015

Anderson Ranch Winter 2015 Immersive Jan. 5-Jan 23.

View of the studio given to me in the basement of the painting/printmaking building during my recent teaching/working immersive at Anderson Ranch in Snowmass, Co.  I had half of the printmaking complex, the other half(through the door at the far end)housing the presses, large digital printer, and flat files.  My studio was the classroom for printmaking--an ideal studio since there was no immersive in printmaking(I was there as the photo/new media instructor).   Lots of tables(high, good for standing) and glass surfaces all along both walls, ideal for gluing and making a mess when painting.  My only problem with the studio was that it served as a main walkway for people going into printmaking, and I found it easier to talk to people passing through than to struggle with my images.  I worked with students in the mornings and then had the afternoon and evening to work on my own.  At the end of each of the three weeks we were there I would invite my students to come down and check on my progress.  I had hoped to conquer the DASS transfer process, so brought materials to support that effort:  paint, brushes, panels, DASS super sauce, DASS transparencies, and access to my photographs files via on-line backup. I also had a Mac computer and an Epson 3880 to print with.

East wall with cellutex so that I could easiily put up work to look at with push pins.  Works developing using DASS transfer techniques along with an ink wash face that developed from across the room as I looked at my paintings lined up against the opposite wall.  It became the face of a bear surrounded by dots(lower right).  I had hoped to improve my photoshop skills, and managed to learn quite a few new things from one of my students, Mark Tucker, and from my friend, Kathy Honea, another digital immigrant.
Finished piece:  DASS transfer over painting.  Wash bear face on the left(with spots).
Opposite wall with developing paintings, some finished, some maybe, maybe not.  All still working with DASS transfer process which sometimes works, and sometimes doesn't.  I'm never quite sure why the non successful don't work, and am often surprised at how the transfers look when they are on the transparencies as opposed to when they have actually been transferred.  Again, sometimes good, sometimes not so good.  Below is a composite of two paintings with a hawk uniiting the two.  Done on a new kind of paper ordered from Dick Blick, a kind of faux carboard meant to be painted on, either oil or water based.  Nice stuff.

 I won't know the success of the images I did during my time at Anderson Ranch until I have them up, have sat with them awhile, and have looked at them through the critical eyes of my husband, Bob.  They are different than what I usually do, so am having to look at the work with new eyes.  

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Gray Horse 2014

My friend Sandra had always loved horses but wasn't able to be involved with them until she was an adult. By the time I met her, she had two horses, and our friendship began because she needed someone help her exercise them. Sandra continued her love affair with horses and finally ended up buying Chevy, a nine year old gray thoroughbred with some basic training in dressage.  Chevy and Sandra worked hard together, moving up in their dressage until they got to level III, although as Sandra said, "He was a little too hot to be a really good dressage horse".  She had Chevy for almost 20 years, and kept him long after he could be ridden, boarding him in a comfortable barn with lots of other horses.  She would come out several times a week to groom and pamper him, bathing him or taking him for walks.  He was in his late 20's when I took this picture, and he died not soon after at the age of 27.

Our animals give us the rare opportunity to love and to be loved unconditionally, and it is as they age that this love is the deepest. Unable to go for runs or rides with us,  partially blind, deaf, incontinent, and lame, they bring out our best selves as we care for them until that terrible moment when we have to send them "over the rainbow bridge". Gray Horse" reminds us of what a privilege and an honor it is to have had these animals in our lives.