Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Will be working on some art for a holiday sale in early december. Works of this type have been proven to be more 'popular' than my fine art pieces, though in truth the only difference is in size and level of work; i.e. I'll tend to work fine art stuff a little more rigorously.

My process aids me in producing things that look similar and have a similar effect, whether they are 8" x 8" or 36" x 48" (or maybe that's just the beer talking).

I'm always worried about diluting the brew, so to speak. Perhaps I should adopt a pseudonym for 'work-for-sale' as opposed to 'pure art'. Is there a difference? It's not like I'm making these smaller more affordable pieces and cackling, rubbing my hands together in the hope of earning about 10 dollars an hour for my time.

If anything, the smaller pieces are more 'pure', since I don't worry them so much. Of course that worrying has its own benefits and demerits - mainly if I worry something too much I'm going to screw it up and then have to work twice as hard to return it to equilibrium.

We're burning our bridges if we talk about this too much, I think. Pay no attention to the man behind the apron.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Giant Heads

Sometimes it's easier to make giant paper mache heads in the studio then it is to paint.


i’m lost. lost in a coffee shop. lost in thought. lost in space. lost in that time between breakfast and lunch. lost somewhere after the beginning of the first beer and the end of the second. between elliot smith and iron and wine. lost at sea. lost between abstraction and reality. between the last day of vacation and the first day of that time that happens between vacations. lost in the woods. lost child. have you seen me? last seen wearing levis and 70’s buckle loafers. in bad need of a shave.

nick drake would be happy here, lost with me at this corner booth of this darkly lit café on Portland’s east side, watching the rain waterfall from the lip of the awning which prevents what little daylight exists on this gray, wet day from entering the windows.

Thursday, November 12, 2009


last night I read the remarks of three painters. starting with Jef Gunn’s latest blog entry about the sensation of painting outdoors in front of the ever changing scenery, then my friend June’s accounts of painting a huge seven panel polyptych in Nevada, and lastly an interview on with Tom Cramer.

how great it is to be a painter, I thought. what a kinship we all have. it’s like a religion. in fact everyone spoke of their experiences with religious zeal. consciousness, emotion, passion, a sense of wonder and mystery, connecting with other people, with our higher self, with nature (with God?). these are the themes that are discussed!

Gauguin talked about painting as “lifting ourselves toward God”, and of becoming a “true creator like our divine master”.

when I see something like this painting by Frank Auerbach (from the pages of a recent Modern Painters magazine) it occurs to me that I might be wrestling with the same ideas in my own painting. me … scratching my chin in front of a canvas and thinking something similar to what Frank Auerbach may have been thinking while scratching his own chin in front of this very canvas! I’m not claiming to be half the painter that Auerbach is (or any fraction for that matter), but just to think that I have been privileged to see, and ponder, and struggle with a similar scene and idea as any of the great painters, past or present, is overwhelming. we are all connected. some of us tell stories, and some play music.