Monday, March 23, 2015

Early Spring Rainforest +Etsy

                                                     oil on canvas 20x20

 More of the alders and maples on the north side of Cook`s Butte. Such a beautiful little forest though none of the trees are large. It has been logged at least twice but in Oregon you can`t keep anything from growing.

 During the Q&A part of the gallery talk Tom Cramer and I gave the other night, the topic turned to livelihood. The audience was mostly painters and this issue always comes up. It always has. Everyone has to find their own way, mine was by way of a part time restaurant career that spanned 30 years.
 With the domination of the internet into nearly everyone`s life, new opportunities for commerce abound. Even for artists. Etsy has become a phenomenon showcasing all manner of hand made arts and crafts. With it`s own complex culture, I`ve never quite figured it out but I know it is earning a living for many artists. Such as the two fine painters, Harry Stooshinoff and Jeremy Miranda. Both work with the landscape. Harry explores his corner of Ontario with obsessive attention. His paintings always reveal something new in his familiar subjects, his dedication to the local environment is always evident. This commitment no doubt shows us his character.
 Jeremy, a former Portland resident, is juxtaposing man made structures within wild and moody landscapes. At a glance one might think surrealism but to me they explore the ideas of shelter and safety and our place in Nature. In my view, no one has painted the Oregon coast so truthfully.
 Both these guys have Etsy shops, both have well over a thousand sales apiece and over 500 positive reviews. What they have in common is affordable prices. This is their brilliant populist tactic. It`s a radical idea.
 I`m not sure at all how a mid career artist like me backpedals to such a stance, not yet anyway.
 I admire so much their independence and entrepreneurship! And with no loss of quality or integrity!

                                                          Barbara Demott

 Back in January, a new friend in British Columbia persuaded me to work with her over a weekend. Teaching causes me so much anxiety, I try not to do it. But Barbara was sure I had something to give her. Because I work so thin, I showed her how I use gravity by tilting the surface. Once home she took that idea and ran! Isn`t that the most gorgeous, emotionally accurate rainforest ever painted?!

 When I moved to Portland the first time in 1985, the Portland Building was new and extremely controversial. Nearly everybody was a vocal hater. Having just arrived I didn`t know any of the back story and just delighted in how quirky it was. It was like a child had made it out of Legos! When the architect Michael Graves died recently, I thanked him mentally for his service. Almost alone at first, he restored a humanity to modern architecture. Despite the ridicule.

                                              The Denver Public Library

 Then it became his mission to bring good design to the masses. He partnered with Target to produce many 'happy' household items such as his famous tea kettle;

I own one and love to water plants with it.
I recently bought a new cat carrier from Target Online that is absolutely elegant. I wanted a top loader, I hate mooshing a terrified cat into a long rectangular tube! This one works beautifully and I wonder if it too is a Michael Graves design?

 This is the last week for my show at the Museum 510 in Lake Oswego. The hours are 11-4 Tues. -Fri. Or call me, I have access after hours, including the weekend. 503 380 4731

I`ll demonstrate my watermedia technique there at 11 am this Thurs. the 26th.

work for sale in my studio

The Affordable Care Act is five years old!

Thank you President Obama!


Libby Fife said...

It is nice to see you next to the painting-getting an idea of the scale of the work helps a lot.

I didn't know too much about Michael Graves so thank you. The teapot is elegant and fun, all at once. I really like his paintings though-sun drenched and beautiful color. The buildings could grow on me I would think-I like the shapes and their integration.

Etsy eludes me. I end up feeling lost in a sea of people much smarter than myself!

Good luck with the cat carrier. My cats would spread out their legs and never get in through the top!


E.M. Corsa said...

Had to laugh at Libby's remark about the cat carrier. My cats would spread their legs too making loading impossible.

Love Harry's work. I don't know how I could ever sell at that price though. Good for him for figuring it out. I think I'm too old school for Etsy.

Nice to see a pic of you!

BlueHwyGal said...

Randall, you have such a generous spirit! Thank you for this blog, and for introducing me to other fine artists, most especially Jeremy Miranda. Seeing his portfolio is both inspiring and discouraging, but I am better for it.

I agree about Michael Graves - I revere useful art and thoughtful design. I didn't know until I saw a post-mortem piece that he designed the Portland Building - I imagine it was controversial, but I'm happy now it's (mostly) beloved.


SamArtDog said...

Mighty fine post, Randall...

I had never seen Jeremy Miranda before. Amazing!

And big up for Obamacare! Why, even Sen. Ted Cruz and Rep. Tim Huelskamp (chairman of the Tea Party Caucus) have signed up.