My brother Mike asked me the other day how I would characterize the work I`ve done in the last year. I told him wildly uneven.
For much of the year I didn`t know if I was getting better or worse. When I realized worse, I quit trying to push myself with exercise. I never stopped but I quit trying to rehabilitate myself. I was making the pain much worse. Now, as I wait for my new knee next week, my painting is as scattered as ever.
I was sitting on the bank of the lake`s canal trying to decide if I was cold, was it too early to paint outdoors. I did the drawing below and thought the weather was fine. Across the channel I could see a level area dense with vegetation. I tried to paint it from memory, first in acrylics and then in oils.
Next I thought I`d do something I`ve never done before but had heard was an excellent way to learn. I would copy a hero. Bjornar Aaslund, a painter from Norway, slides in and out of abstraction as he paints his landscape derived, dynamic paintings. His work is adept and passionate and I admire it a lot;
His painting, at its core, is suffused with nature. As if he has studied it all his life up close. As if he were a biologist. That last one, just above, is the one I decided to paint. I thought I could learn about his process and just adopting his palette was educational.
Quickly I went my own way but it was a fun exercise. It wasn`t hard to imagine the lakes finally free of ice, suddenly teaming with plants in the warm sunlight.
Because of my limited mobility I can`t get to all the places which are the basis of what I do. Consequently, I`ve had more creative blocks than ever. Usually I don`t become over concerned. A change of mediums will get things moving again. This time has been different. It feels like I`m actually denied that part of my brain. As if my imagination were inert or empty. A modest walk in Bryant Woods or a review of one of my Pinterest boards can change the chemistry in my thinking somewhat reliably but what is going on? It has been on, then off, frequently. I bet it has a hormonal element. Anyone else experience this as being cutoff from oneself?
My show at the Hanson Howard Gallery in Ashland OR is up the whole month of April!
This is plein air painting! This Australian painter is another naturalist/artist. Really inspirational.
work for sale in my studio