2017, Happy New Year

2016 ended quietly, without any big occurrences or incidences. I can be happy about that. I think the world is changing very rapidly all around us, politically, physically, technologically, and if for a moment I can be lucky to have my close family near, everybody safe, content, happy even, I am grateful. For those of you who know me, I can inform you we are still in Sweden and will be here through this year. Artistically, I don’t know where my path is taking me at the moment and I have not made any concrete resolutions. I don’t like resolutions, or the New Years Eve kind….I think they are short lived, destined to fail and just make you feel bad in the end.

At the last moment…actually on Jan 1 of 2017 I took a leap and started a cycling giraffe meme. In the past few months I have given it a lot of thought to a theme, or goal or continuous process of artistic direction that could transpire over the year. I came up short. But my last minute decision is still in an amorphous state. Drawing cycling giraffes is the common denominator, in which I hope this discipline evokes more creative giraffes and more ease at drawing both bicycles and giraffes. And at the end of the…proverbial…..day, I hope something else comes of this altogether. So here I  go, for now the weaving of the thread includes winter holiday activities, day to day simplicities….I am not sure if this will take a year, 365, or week days only, or total out at 50 or 100….but so far this is what we got. They are 7.25″ sq watercolor and ink paintings.

Like I said I don’t like resolutions, but I have made some mental promises with myself to practice more portrait drawings and work on anatomy understanding more as well. And of course, I want to keep the urban sketching very active in my daily life….I can’t express how much more an impact a sketch is than a photograph. I have included some of my portrait sketches that I make with the help from an app for your phone called sktchy…check it out if you haven’t heard of it….it is a wonderful tool for artists of ALL levels, very supportive and very fun. www.sktchy.com

and a few urban sketches….

To everyone, I wish you all a wonderful journey through 2017. Good cheer and good health, patience and good virtue. Keep your passions thriving and help to lift others up. Hugs and well wishes for 2017!

November is half over? How did that happen?

Last I blogged I spoke of end of autumn, but we have fully transitioned into winter. Last Wednesday, November 9th Stockholm was struck with a Snökanon, literally translated to Snow Cannon. I included a link to a video of the day https://weather.com/news/weather/news/stockholm-sweden-snowiest-day-in-111-years

Anyway, it is raining as I type, so most of the snow has actually gone and so have all the leaves on the trees. The winter ground covering may have cleared for the moment but I feel like we are in for a bumpy season.

I closed up my latest art exhibit in Spånga this past Saturday. I was pleasantly surprised and super grateful at how many works have gone to new homes. I find it a bit overwhelming to chat about my own work, my process, my inspirations, my medium, my background, but something that seems to get a bit easier as I do it more.  I am so so so thankful to have my family and friends to stand beside me during this (and help me carry everything)!! and fortunate to make new friends and meet more artists!

 

Cyklistens Dagar

Translated Cyclists Day, is coming up this Friday and Saturday, April 22 and 23 under the beautiful cherry blossoms in Kungsträdgården, Stockholm. I am so honored to be asked to be a part of this event by Sthlm Bike…..so if you are in the neighborhood and want to come down to support Sthlm Bike please come by my tent and say hello!!!

What next…..

Yesterday I packed up what paintings that didn’t sell and met all the people picking up their purchases. A few people asked me how I felt about the whole experience. During the last 10 days I had a lot of questions asked that I had to answer without pre-thought….and that in itself was interesting. I would surprise myself with how comfortable I am getting with opening my sketchbook, sharing my giraffes, and what I used to think was weird about me, I am now really embracing. I don’t know what is going to happen next…but I do know, I would like to paint more cycling giraffes. The response was so heartwarming and genuine, from toddlers to adults that it has inspired a new flame, a new series maybe.

And I survived.

The vernissage or opening weekend of Giraffes on Wheels was such a lovely experience! Starting with a  dear friend that persevered through a grueling 5 hours of hanging the show with me after driving me to the gallery! There was a moment when I was ready to have a temper-tantrum and just frisbee hurl a few prints through the window. But she kept me grounded, and we had some laughs!

I had no expectations going into this….this isn’t my homeland…I am solo! (Well of course my husband and kids kept me company). But I was honored with so many friends that came. It was (a bit scary) so nice to share this part of me. Then there was the visitors that walked in off the street and that was fun to see their reaction and speak about my experience and exposure to swedish cycling culture. My daughter heard a lot of people say “roligt” and “lustig” meaning funny or amusing. And that is a compliment to me!!

 

 

So this is happening.

If you happen to be in the neighborhood and have a little time on your hands, I have put together all of my cycling giraffe paintings and prints. Come by and say hello, I would love to meet you!! I will be there this Saturday and Sunday, February 6 and 7th from noon to 3pm. The gallery will be open Monday thru Thursday for viewing as well and next weekend February 13 and 14th. ooooh Valentines Day…..

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giraffes on wheels announcement

Alvikstorpet Galleraget is located a short walk off the Alvik t-bana. Ekstigen 1, Bromma.

Thinking inside the Box.

One project I dreamt about, and have really enjoyed seeing it come together is my box painting. Using a deep set frame I painted a backdrop and then cut out a watercolored giraffe cycling and placed it in the foreground. Using straight pins to keep the cycling giraffe from falling onto the background and a small dab of clear glue by the wheels, it seems to hold together quite nicely. These giraffes are replications of cyclists I have seen.

A while back, last year, maybe October…I visited the Dansmuseet, Dance Museum of Stockholm and they had windows on display with paper cut-out people that danced to different types of music…..and I was enchanted….and apparently inspired.

 

A Peek On My Desk

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Listening to music…(alt-J if interested) and working on this lovely nightmare of wheels and spokes, quiet hump day which I thought I would share.

The Tri Guy

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I ride a road bike for complete enjoyment! When I go out for my enjoyment ride, it can be for 2, 3, 4 or more hours….and it almost never fails that one of these triathlon riders sneaks up behind, like a ninja and whizzes by in a blur like a single breeze…..blink and you miss it…..