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!
Summer is over and Autumn is now grinding to a wet and grey transition to bitter winter. My days of sketching outside I think are numbered…single digits even. I am having an exhibit in a kommun not too far, Spånga, hosted by the Spånga Arts Society. I will be displaying prints of my Giraffes on Wheels, a few new giraffes, and a handful of my colorful Autumn House pieces that have kept me upbeat for the past few weeks. As I feel the heaviness of the lack of sun, recreating the few gorgeous days of blue skies and magnificent color that Sweden provided this early Autumn has proven beneficial to my happiness. Below is a slight progression from urban sketching to playing with color and simple swedish architecture.
Come join me in Spånga, vernissage on Sunday, October 30th at Spånga Församlingshus, Värsta Alle 1, from kl. 17:00
Also open Weekdays from 9:00 -12:00 and 13:00-16:00 until November 12, 16:00
Had no idea what to title this post…it was gonna be a boring title until I realized that is Friday…so TGIF crossed my mind and then the date….and it brought it all together.
Well this post is pretty cut and dry….just sharing my last bunch of Every Day in May paintings….
May 6 A Timepiece.
May 7 Cleaning gadgets.
May 8 Boots.
May 9 Someone you love/admire. My Dad.
May 10 Candy.
May 11 Bucket or Pail.
May 12 Leaves.
May 13 Suitcase.
Yesterday (sunday) I met with the Urban Sketchers of Stockholm. We were meeting at Stortorget, in Gamla Stan….one of my favorite places (and anybody that has been to Stockholm probably also feels the same way). After having spent Friday and Saturday outside in the “weather” I was really hoping for a nice relaxing day of painting with friends. Well….just like my experience in Kungsträdgården for 2 days, mother nature is still throwing bits of winter at us. It was cold, windy, with rain, hail and snow. Oh and there was a fire incident and the trucks came and the trucks went….all very exciting. We enjoyed a warm fika after and then visited two different artists that were having exhibitions.
Finished with color
This is where I ended up sitting to finish the sketch
Where we enjoyed warm fika
This was as far as I got working outside.
I had the sincere pleasure to be commissioned to do some dog paintings for a birthday gift. Now that the gift has been given and I am not ruining any surprises…..I thought I would share….
Enzo is a flat coat retriever just like our Dexter but he has a different temperament. He is older, and is much more trained. He can do tricks and has been exposed to more social situations, either the dog kind or people kind(like coffee shops). He is a beautiful dog. As much as he looks like Dexters brother, he wasn’t too hard to capture his unique gait, his tricks, his way and his neighborhood.
We have returned from our wonderful trip to Japan. I am still sorting through dirty clothes and half emptied suitcases. I have done a lot of sketching but I also found that there was so much to see that I couldn’t see if I was sketching just one thing…hard to find a balance. I have posted a few sketches on instagram, so if you don’t follow me these will be new to you….
Our first 1hr plane ride to Helsinki….before the killer 9+hour ride…
Doodling on my coffee cup in Helsinki
Our first night in Shinjuku, Tokyo, out to dinner at a traditional Japanese restaurant
My take on “jetlag”, and the uncontrollable need to sleep, no matter where or what you are doing….and feeling a bit of motion sickness on top of it!
We saw so many woman or girls dressed up, either in the city or at the temples…..breathtakingly beautiful
Today is International Women’s Day, a global initiative to recognize women around the world as strong and equal, achieve equal respect and to encourage the support of all ambitions. I would also like to recognize that on March 3, Japan celebrates Hinamatsuri, also called Doll’s Day or Girl’s Day.
I am not sure how I am going to continue….I have a lot of work to finish in the sketchbook as well…and it is sort of becoming a bit of a scrapbook as I sort through the receipts and maps…..
Dexter has been giving me the “I know you are leaving” guilt-trip look for days!
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.
The view of looking outside the gallery.
last few left hanging…..
all sold now!
I really do. And Dexter is the perfect subject for using this medium. Lamy Safari, extra fine nib and Noodlers Black ink.
Enjoyed another weekend opening the gallery. A steady stream of passerby’s that meander in while taking their afternoon stroll. There is a blanket of snow on the ground here in Stockholm and the temps keep at about minus 4, so seasonable but on the chilly side. The weekend was abundant with blue skies and sun. Many comments about needing sunglasses.
It is such a pleasure to spend the day(s) sharing my work and getting such happy responses. The art will stay on display until this thursday, February 18. Valentines Day in Sweden is getting very popular, so I worked on a little page(s) of love in my moleskine last night and this morning….Happy Valentines to all!