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September 2012
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November 2012

October 2012

Get ready.....

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After all this time and all these classes and all the students with whom we have been artfully engaged it is time for an (drum roll please)...Art Gallery Tour.  The ever-industrious and exceedingly talented Ms. Julie Prichard has gathered art from near and far and arranged an amazing tour for you to share and enjoy.  We are proud and amazed to have shared our online art classes for the past few years with so many talented individuals.  Some of you joined us knowing very little, others were well on your way.  Regardless we have seen your work evolve and change and soar.  Every Friday in November you can view art from  our talented students, visit their websites, engage in conversation, leave a word of support and comment on what you see.  This is your community and we hope that you will make it your own.  The fun starts on November 2 in The Land of Lost Luggage . We'll see you there!
Artfully yours, Chris

Observing Randomness

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I spent a week in Arizona recently amidst the glory of red rocks and blue skies.  There were times when I could no longer cast long gazes as it became impossible to take it all in.  Fortunately I was able to capture the details with my camera.  After all the wide expanses I felt the need to start looking at the randomness of the rock placements as I found them.  I'm always talking with my students about the natural placement of objects/elements vs. things that appear contrived when they are placed.  I once learned how to plant daffodils so they seemed naturalized.  Take a handful of bulbs and toss them into the bed.  Plant them where they land.  These rocks fell here in this river bed.  How long ago we'll never know.  But here they are in all their random glory.  Think about natural random placements next time you are preparing a composition.  It really helps!
Artfully yours, Chris

Refreshing!

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It rained  yesterday!  That is a huge event in Southern California after a long hot and very dry summer.  The sky opened up and literally dumped its bounty on the ground.  I love seeing how clean and sharp everything looks after the rains have washed away the accumulated dust and grime on the surfaces.  It all seems fresh and refreshed.  I can see the difference in the garden after a week of cooler temps and this wonderful wet bonus.  The roses are sending out new leaves and blooms and the tired tomato plants are going to get their second wind.  I may have fried green tomatoes in November if I am lucky!  We've been doing a construction project here at the house and ran into a few unexpected detours that caused a huge trench to be dug into my garden.  Yesterday it finally got filled up after two weeks of digging, laying drain pipes, then laying new gas lines, inspections and corrections.  Yeah!  No more ugly trench.  Now I will work with the gardener to rethink certain areas that got decimated and see what we can do to make it look lovely again.  Always something to do in the garden. 

I'm sharing this piece I painted on plexi quite some time ago.  I keep it in the window sometimes to watch the light stream through.  I like to think that is how the plants felt yesterday after their unexpected shower!  Here's to refreshing artful thoughts this next week!

Artfully yours, Chris

Do the work!

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I've been writing an article for an upcoming edition of Cloth, Paper, Scissors Magazine these last few days.  In the process I did a lot of color exercises.  This process reminded me that we really need to build up our understanding of the paints we own by doing these exercises in color-mixing and color-blending on a regular basis.  In Color: Beyond the Basics, a class  I teach with Julie Prichard in her on-line network The Land of Lost Luggage, we spend a lot of time encouraging students to build this understanding so that they can actually expand the color options they have available to them.  I find that   I sit down with a single color and push its boundaries through the introduction of other colors I discover something new and wonderful that I had not been aware of before!  Just try it.  Take your favorite Red, Blue and Yellow and introduce them to each other and then to a group of compatible friends like the Interference colors or iridescent pearl, gold, or silver.  It's magical.  Let me know what you discover.  I would love to hear about it.

Artfully yours, Chris