Friday, October 4, 2013

Trips: pleasant and not so pleasant!

 A trip to beautiful Canada - I'm not fond of Southern Ontario with all the traffic and incredible development - but only a couple of hours North and you're into gorgeous wonder all Canadians seem to be able to suffer hours of traffic jams in order to visit their weekend "cottages".  On the left is one of my favorite kinds of scene...a dark value foreground, leading to the promise of a glowing patch of something in the middle ground.  I used this kind of value pattern a lot in the series of night city streets I did some years ago. (scroll down to see the street scenes)

There's also nothing like space, space, beautiful space, empty of people space in "home" landscape was the Yorkshire moors and I love the recession and colour that are evident here.
This is Lake Buckhorn by the way.

another landscape love of mine: reflections!
And here you can see me stretched out with what looks like three cups of tea (must have been there a while!!) making little sketches of those aspects of the beauty around me that really caught my eye.

It is important to work with those images that really resonate with you, in your own way.  Recently I was recommended a lovely blog by David Owen where he occasionally writes about various artists he feels are important.  In writing about Ben Shahn, he quotes the artist's search for his own voice.  He had become a very competent painter in the style of various greats - mainly in Europe - but questioned:

"This may be art, but is it my own art?"

Shahn wanted to be more than professional, competent and even original.  What he wanted to do above all was to produce art that was uniquely him: his whole life, everything that had happened to him from childhood through college and all that he had experienced, felt and thought. When he looked at the work he was producing, he criticized himself for not using his own personal techniques, in his own way, about things that he really cared about. The things that were on his mind.
   Do you see yourself in your work?  do you see the things that worry or delight you the most?
Art work should be as distinctive as handwriting, and the message should be that which is in your heart every day. I'm cogitating......

Okay - and now the "not so pleasant trip" - I managed to fall downstairs while trying to do and carry too many things - not following my own advice to be Very Careful on stairs!!  Consequently a very nasty sprain means that I'm laid up (alas no square dancing!) for a few weeks and have had to postpone my Abstract Art for Quiltmakers workshop in Falmouth, Cape Cod.  Thankfully only one student was unable to make the new dates (nov 18-22) - but that does open up a slot - so if you're interested, do email Linda - (or phone:508-477-0057, or 800-537-5191).  And Be Very Careful on stairs!!  

If you have been, thanks for reading!   Elizabeth



indigocarole said...

Commiserations on the not so nice trip and hope it soon mends. I just wanted to thank you for articulating something I have felt for a long time and captured in photographs.
Looking out from within a dark place. The old wood where I walked the dogs for years has a broken wall looking out to fields and hills beyond. On the other side I captured a snowy landscape between trees looking over snowy fields. Now I understand why they appealed to me. Thank you.

Gay Young said...

Elizabeth! So sorry to learn of your fall!! Hope you are well on the way to mending by now!!

I have quite a few photos of "looking out from a dark space". Perhaps it is time to take a good look at some of them....

Thanks for the boost.