Monday, November 28, 2011

NYC Energy

Doesn't this look like an old photo?
NOT, I just took it last week.
View from our hotel
After returning from my first trip to the big apple, NYC, I realize why creative people want to live there, it's the energy of the place. I was lucky enough to see the city the right way: a Broadway musical, the Rockettes, Time Square, the Statue of Liberty, Rockefeller Center, need I say more?
We were within 500 feet of Justin Beiber and Taylor Swift, not that we saw either of them, but cool to think we were that close to icons.

On our last night there we saw the Spiderman musical on Broadway, where Taylor Swift was in the audience by the way, and couldn't close my mouth through the whole thing it was that amazing. We returned to our hotel after the performance and I just couldn't sleep, so I sat up and worked on the latest chapter of my YA novel. Ideas flowed in abundance.

Spiderman on Broadway
It really is inspiring to be near so much creativity and talent. 

Like magic fairy dust, inspiration sprinkles all over your head and opens your mind.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Quote From Lexi

I dreamed about goats. 
They needed money.

Author - Lexi Jane, my two year old niece. This is the first thing she said to me after getting up from a nap. She is very much worthy of being quoted!

Monday, November 14, 2011

ARTitude Kids Workshop

I ran my first ARTitude Kids workshop this past weekend. Seven kids ranging from the ages of seven to ten came to my house to complete one painting. With that age gap I was concerned I'd created a piece too difficult to mimic.

My goal was to have the kids think about texture, color transition, moving the eye through a composition, and layering colors.
Leah - 5th Grader

Half way through the project, as I was walking around to help my students I thought, crap, this project was too hard. The kids weren't getting it. I had them squinting to see  if there were enough dark colors and contrasting light colors, many of them couldn't see that there weren't. Some of them wanted to stop at that point, and it was my job to show them there is more to a painting than the top layer.

I began to grab the kids brushes and show them how and where to add the color. I wanted the kids to create something their parents would be psyched about hanging in their house. I know, unnecessary pressure to place on the kids. 

With thirty minutes left of the class, I breathed a sigh of relief, the kids were layering their colors. Their paintings were their interpretations of my example, and they were all unique and beautiful.
Nicholas - 3rd Grader

It was a reminder of what I go through as an artist every time I do a painting. Half-way through my paintings I hate what I'm working on. I think I suck. I wonder if the painting should be thrown away and I should start over. I keep going, because I can't stand walking away from an unfinished piece. The areas I can improve and expand upon begin to stick out. I keep going and before I know it, I fall in love with my painting, glad I stuck with it.

It is that extra push that turns an average piece of art into something really wonderful, in my opinion. It's like baking, if it is under-cooked it's messy, if it's over-cooked it's ruined.

Anyway, I am very proud of my students. They didn't give up, and wow did they come up with some incredible pieces.