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July 2012
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September 2012

August 2012

Through one person's eyes...

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From time to time I see something that I have to share with you.  Today I visited the Pasadena Museum of California Art to see an exhibition of Edgar Alwin Payne's plein air impressionist art. Unlike so many of the impressionist landscapes we have come to recognize, Payne's work is filled with intense and vibrant color.  His depiction of the places he saw and painted is so alive with power and form that it takes ones breath away.  He painted many scenes of the great mountain tops both here and in Europe, and his impressionist brush work is so marvelous on these massive pieces one can feel the texture with ones eyes.  One one work you can see glimpses of Van Gogh's large decisive strokes as well as Renoir's subtle shifts of color (albeit a different palette!).  If you live in SoCal and can manage a trip to see this exhibit...GO!  It is worth your time and you will think differently about plein air and impressionism afterwards.  Just saying...

Artfully yours, Chris

Seeing "Red"...

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Today I went to see a production of "Red" at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles.  This electrifying production is about the life of Mark Rothko.  There are only two characters on stage throughout the production. The set is an art studio and the props are "Rothko" paintings.  He painted large, really large and struggled constantly with the balance of his color placement.  There was talk of all the great artists who were his contemporaries.  It made me think a lot about color choices and how much time is spent working on getting the color "just right."  There is a wonderful piece of dialogue from the play that happens when Rothko asks his assistant to tell him what he sees and he looks and says, simply "red."  Rothko explodes and what follows is a back and forth barrage of "red" words between the two characters: Salmon, coral, rose, magenta, crimson, scarlet, vermilion, burgundy, rust, ruby, maroon, claret....and on and on.  It was fabulous.  My mind was trying to "see" the colors as they flew between the characters on stage.  I love Napthol Red Light and many of my students know that it is one of my favorite reds.  What is your favorite red pigment or color?

Artfully yours, Chris

On meeting deadlines...

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I see this image as if it were a scrimmage play telling the team where they should go and how to achieve a goal.  It's a bit like needing a roadmap to get through a series of hoops, loop-de-loops, and tunnels.  That's been my life these last three weeks.  I've prepped all the boards and written the scripts for my soon to be recorded DVDs, submitted 9 class proposals for two major Art events for next year, and am trying to coordinate Fall travel plans for a trip to Cincinnati and Cleveland (got to see the grandkids), Sedona, AZ , and Florida (100 year family reunion).  If you look at those little scribbly circles at the top, that's how I am feeling right now.  But, it's all good!   I hope your life is filled with achieveable goals and exciting possibilities on the horizon.  Let me hear what good things are on your agenda.

Artfully yours, Chris

An invitation to share

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I've taken a bit of a blogging break for the past few weeks.  I've been teaching, traveling, writing, and visiting with family and friends.  I'm seeing the light at the end of the tunnel on a few very long term projects and that feels good.  My trip to visit a really wonderful friend up in N. California cleared the cobwebs from my brain and helped me focus my attention on the tasks at hand once I returned.  We ate well, walked, went to museums and just talked about art, life, family and the world in general.  I'm starting to think about what comes next.  My book with Julie Prichard, Acrylic Solutions: Mixed Media Layer by Layer is finally in the edit stage and our work is almost done on it.  I've seen some of the pages and it is beautiful and filled with artful ideas.  We can't wait for everyone to see it.  What you may not know is that I've planned three DVD's that will be released by Northlight in conjunction with the book.  These too will be chock full of fabulous information and will show me "hands-on" in action demoing the techniques from the book and loads more.  So once those are over and the editing is done my question is "what's next?"  I'm inviting you to send your suggestions via the comment section.  What do you want to see from me? I'm considering where I'll teach next year once the book is out and would love to hear from any of you who have a venue where I might visit & teach.  I'll look forward to your ideas!  PS: I'm still sending postcards!

Artfully yours, Chris