Where did fall go???
Can you believe this weather? I was wishing for 'global warming' to make Calgary the new Portland, but instead we are looking more like the new Whitehorse, without the benefits of long summer days! But we must rejoice that fall has returned for this one week, albeit without the gorgeous leaves.
This summer was a strange one also, but I was able to get out for a few days of plein air painting when it was neither too hot or too smoky! In September I traveled back to our cottage in central Ontario with the sole purpose of capturing the gorgeous fall leaves in paint. I haven't seen the fall since I left the province in 1978. Alas, we were 2 weeks early and the extravagance which is Ontario in the fall was just coming on as we left. I guess that means I will just have to try again.
I have been pursuing a new style in my artwork, which I am happy to say has been hitting the right chords with the public. After painting 'en plein air' (outside at the location) for the last 7 years, I have built up a great deal of memory and a solid kinship to the way things appear when you take the time to really look and study them. I have taken that knowledge and have applied some of the principles from my abstract work to it. I think the resulting work is more full of 'me', creative and contemporary than it has been before. Painting on the landscape and trying to make the work look more abstract is a very difficult task, when faced with the overwhelming beauty of what is truly present. So I have found that reinterpreting my previous work easier to do in the studio.
I decided to write a list of all the things that I wanted to be a part of my new work, and have that posted in my studio to remind me of my goals. The list includes the following:
-strong, decisive, chunky brush marks rather than modelling of form
-exaggerate and simplify the forms into shapes with interesting edges, yet keep them flattened
-push the colour and colour variation within the forms
-play with flattening of the picture plane
-keep my full value range (light to dark) approach to provide nice contrast and life to the image
-use some creative outlining of shapes for fun and to highlight the flattening
-focus on creating movement throughout the compositions
-paint BIGGER using big brushes and non-traditional tools
You can see most of this in the painting at the top of this newsletter ('Planted By The Water', 12x12" acrylic on canvas). I hope you like it -comments are more than welcome!
I am thrilled to be participating once again in the fall Calyx Distinctive Arts show. This year I will be ONLY on Saturday October 20 (THIS SATURDAY) , from 10-4pm with more than 30 of my latest creations. If you haven't attended this show before, it is a MUST SEE, with fine art and fine crafts and different artists each day, it is an extravaganza of beauty!
UPCOMING WORKSHOPS AND CLASSES
I do have a few workshops coming up to tell you about. I will be teaching a Weekend Intensive Encaustic Workshop at the Leighton Centre on Oct 27-28. Please click here for more info and to register.
As well I am thrilled to announce that I will be joining Inglewood Art Supply as a teacher. My first workshop will be November 10-11 entitled Colour Mixing For Every Medium. Please call the store for more information.
I continue to do critiques and demonstrations for many of the local art groups as well as hosting my Monthly Critique Class in my home.
I do love teaching and truly enjoy my students comments on how much they learn. Here is one from a long time student, Sally:
"Sharon is one of those teachers who approaches art on many levels - she treads a delicate balancing act between keeping to certain rules, and throwing the rules out the window. In her critique classes she knows when to say what to her students and is always encouraging. She used to frequently say , ‘Art is HUGE’, inviting her students to do research and discover just how many styles there are and how exciting and satisfying creating art is. Not only is Sharon a serious, well-known artist in Calgary, I believe she is one of the best art teachers in Calgary. Being able to name the multitude of ways to convey a visual message on canvas is a very high skill which Sharon has in abundance. I am fortunate indeed to be able to continue to seek her opinion in her monthly critique classes."
Wow, that really blesses me, and confirms that I am filling a need in my community, which is my great privilege.
I am sorry to tell you that Just Imajan Gallery in Cochrane has just closed it's doors. I will miss that gallery as I think that owner Janet was the best promoter of my work so far! As well Evanescence Gallery in High River has closed. It is a shame that such great galleries are leaving us, but I am thrilled that I have just been added to the artist stable at Points North Gallery in Fort MacMurray.
My work can always be seen at the following galleries:
Palliser Art & Framing, Calgary
Selkirk Grille, Heritage Park, Calgary
Leighton Art Centre, outside Calgary
Points North Gallery, Fort MacMurray, AB
I am sure you will join your fellow Calgarians in preparing to hibernate for the long winter ahead, but I hope that you will be able to go to an art show or take a workshop to stir your own creativity!
Thanks for being such a valuable person in my life