I'm ready to paint again. When I say paint I mean "oil paint". I have been enjoying my little foray into experimental water media (acrylics, inks, collage, etc). I have a few more techniques to use, but I truly missed by oils and my easel. It occurred to me one day when I walked into my neighboring art teacher's room. I smelled the delightful aroma of linseed oil and realized that the Art 4 students started painting!
I finished my Experimental Painting Class on Wednesday. I think I started to "get it", but I also "got into it" with my teacher "George". For weeks I've been listening to George rant about how Obama is ruining the economy. His dwindling 401K plan is all because of Obama. (It turns out that my esteemed teacher is an avowed dittohead; a Rush Limbaugh loyalist who apparently has nothing better to do than listen to Limbaugh's daily three hour hatefest). When George insisted he enjoyed enjoyed seven years of prosperity under Dubya I almost lost it. I challenged George. George insisted that Rush was a brilliant man. To which I responded he was a pompous, oxycontin addicted arse (you get the picture).
Anyways, the rest of the evening was a bit awkward and silent. I played some Miles Davis for the good of the class and I painted better than I had in a while. I don't know if it was Miles' magic or my freedom of expression! (I have to touch up that particular painting but I'll post it eventually).
In retrospect, I felt like I didn't particularly "belong" in this class. George is an excellent artist. But George has his particular style of teaching that attracts a certain type of student. Should I dare to entertain the word "groupie"? These "women" and sometimes men seem to hover around George and beg for his opinions and cherish every "pearl of artistic wisdom" that dropped from his mouth. In all fairness, some of his followers have come into their own and have made it quite well in the "local" art scene.
Anyway, I took advantage of our wonderful warm weather and walked out to my little studio (the shed) to find a few works in progress. I started this one in the fall. Some of you remember some of the fall photos I posted. This was a from a photo I took in that series. For those purists out there, I work from photos and plein air. While plein air is preferred, it is not always possible. Generally, I use my plein air beginning or photo as a "point of departure". I do not consider myself a "realist". While my subject matter may start out realistic, there are other elements that I add to personalize my work. I remember why I like painting the way I do. I may not be killing in the gallery scene, but I'm painting!