I was so honored to have the opportunity to share my work with the Central Oregon community with my debut show at LUMIN Studios on Tumalo this past October. It was a family affair with help from my dear husband, parents, and in-laws with things like child care and help with meals as I painted 30 paintings in 30 days in the month of September and prepared my work to show at the gallery. I had a successful opening afternoon and sold 6 paintings. It was overwhelming to be surrounded by friends, neighbors, fellow parents from school, local artists, and even a friend from college at my show's opening reception. I'm so grateful to the wonderfully talented, Carolyn Stokes, of Photography In Bend for capturing the light in the gallery and showcasing my work and the reception. I'll even forgive you for the photos that include my double chin!
If you follow me on Instagram, you'll notice that my feed has been filling up with colorful tree paintings lately. I've been working on a new series in my studio for the past few weeks. I'm calling it my "Happy Little Trees" series. They're fun to make and I'm enjoying playing with colors, layers, and textures. A bit more whimsical than some of my more serious work but tons of fun to make and they are being received well by friends and family. I have experienced a lot of grief, change, and growth in the past two years after losing my best friend, Lisa, to lung cancer, losing my grandmother, and another close friend, Leslie, to cancer. Watching two more friends get diagnosed with cancer and start their own journey of healing as we learned we would be relocating for my husband's new job. Last fall, I moved across the United States from Virginia to Oregon to start a new life and new career path with my husband and our two daughters. I've spent a lot of time reflecting on the events of the past two years and have come out on the other end stronger, more resilient, and ready to make art again. I've quit craft blogging - it was fun for the 6 years I did it, but not it's not a part of who I am anymore. My calling has always been to make my own art and be true to myself as an artist.
My Happy Little Trees series is meant to be whimsical and colorful. I'm exploring color, texture, and line. I'm focusing on the interplay of "positive" and "negative" space as I reflect on my own positive and negative growth experiences from the past few years. I'm using these trees as a form of art therapy to explore living more simply while celebrating nature, color, texture, and line. I want the viewer to feel happy and playful. I want them to be in the moment and feel joy. Life is short and meant to be celebrated.
I'm busy working in my studio to get ready for my upcoming solo show at Lumin Studios gallery in Tumalo, OR on October 11, 2014 from 1pm-4pm. There will be lots of paintings available for sale as well as some cards and prints.
After experimenting in my first computer transfer class followed by a painting class, I became interested in combining the two mediums. I discovered that the layered imagery of contemporary artist Lynne Perrella's assemblages and collages and have a great deal in common with my monoprints from my undergraduate work. Her Jasper Johns-like pieces inspired me to merge my painting and computer transfers in any way that I could imagine.
During an independent study with Bob Worthy I created a few canvases combining painting and transfers. The most successful one is The Journey Home because it fully incorporates my interests in layering both content and media. This textured canvas combines tea-dyed handmade paper with computer emulsion transfers. This led to a new series based upon this piece.
I also created a series of emulsion transfers with photos of trees I took in the woods behind my home. This series sold at my Path is a Circle show to a private collector in 2006.