I often talk about how much I love carving stamps...especially in collaboration with my daughter Katherine Funk as she uses them to stamp fabrics for her fashions. I wish I wanted to use them myself more often as I really do enjoy the process but am so grateful that I can work with her in this way. It's also wonderful to hear her ideas and then expand on them. I can't wait to see what's next!
I finally enlarged one of the 5x7 acrylic plein air paintings I created last summer. Parts of it I love, and others not so much. There is something to be said about the immediacy of working small, especially when you have a limited time to capture an image. I also use Open Acrylics when painting en plein air so that gives the paint a little more time for mixing colour directly on the canvas, which I think makes a difference, too. Right now the piece is hanging a a clinic in my community but as I look at the photograph of it I am seeing some of the layers I want to add and the changes I want to make to it. I'm actually looking forward to getting it back so that I can add to it.
Last weekend was very cold but we still had a great group exhibit at Inglewood Fine Arts. I can't believe that 10 years have gone by since I began to exhibit at the gallery and I am sorry to see it close and the Director retire to Montreal, though I do wish him the best. It's been a wonderful partnership and I'm sorry to see it end.
"Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life.
Don't be trapped by dogma - which is living with the results of other people's thinking.
Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice.
And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition."
~ Steve Jobs
When I kept noticing artists posting their collage for 'Art vs Artist' on Instagram I kept thinking of what I would choose as my images and this is what I've decided. I knew I had to include my 100 Days Nasty Women project (top right) which was a bit of an offshoot of the 52 WEEKS::Heroes (top left). The bees have been important to me to draw attention to their plight and their importance to us, plus I love watching them in my garden. Canoes represent my childhood and the initial huge shift in my artwork and the fashion plate is a part of my current body of work. The hearts represent Valentines and the nest as the most abstract of my work and another current project and the landscape comes from the small plein air paintings I've been playing with the past couple of years. It was difficult to narrow it down to these because there are also the flowers, tipis, animals, cabins, altered books and carvings but I think these are the ones that have helped me grow the most creatively and are kind of where my head is at the moment. It will be interesting to see where the year ahead leads.
These are the newest pieces I delivered to Bluerock Gallery in Black Diamond after I returned from teaching in the Okanagan. It's funny, when the pieces are in my studio sometimes I think they seem so muted, but once I get them to the gallery I realize how vibrant they are. The elephant was painted a couple of years ago but hasn't been shown before so it was nice to bring him out for a visit. It seems appropriate that I've been painting flowers, bees and hearts...there's just something so happy about all three.
I've been working on a new commission which is really exciting. This was the 'before' but the 'after' won't be for awhile. I love beginnings, especially new ones where I can utilize my creative vision. Whenever I'm given too many parameters for a commission I don't enjoy the process so much. With these frigid arctic temperatures these days I haven't wanted to leave our home or to do anything else but paint, so the timing is absolutely great! I'll share more once the piece is delivered later this month.
Last week my daughter, Katherine, was one of the fashion designers at the MS Winter Gala. She decided to share a couple of her hand-stamped vintage inspired dresses. These are projects that I absolutely love as we get to collaborate - she shares her vision, I draw a couple of ideas and once she's chosen one, I get to carve it. I really do enjoy working on projects with my daughters and love carving prints though I don't use them often myself. It's such a great partnership. The photograph of her moth dress on the right was taken by Zev Vitaly Abosh. To see more of her designs, visit her website here.