Monday, June 5, 2017

SCENES FROM NEW HAMPSHIRE: DISCOVERING OIL PASTELS

DISCOVERING OIL PASTELS: Waterfalls
The flume in Franconia Notch  (9X12)

Although I'd used oil pastels before, my first choice had become pastels or oil. Over the winter my studio situation had changed and my main easel, with  my Artist Air machine, remained at my former studio. Since I would never consider doing an indoor pastel or oil painting without Artist Air, if I wanted to paint at my home, I needed another solution. Pencil, watercolor, acrylics or oil pastels?


Diana's Bath (9x12)
Pulling out my photo files (Mac cites over 14,000! photos!) I skimmed over some of my favorite hike files and chose  several waterfall photos. In real life waterfalls  and streams are soothing.   I breath with the pulsing of the waters falling into the waiting pools, and sliding over and around boulders. I merge myself in the splatters and spray as they dance to their own rhythms, and delight at the changing rainbows. Its calming and other worldly. 

My own life at the time was needing calm and my fingers were itching to move onto paper, push around colors, and create a few sprays of my own. I needed the art therapy and chose the oil pastels because they were the quickest. No setting up a palette, no fooling with mediums, mineral spirits, brush cleaning. Just open the box, pick up a stick and start! 


Could Be Anywhere! (9X12)
Painting can be even better than real life because it makes the artist the creator.
Diana's Bath (9x12)


Glen Ellis Falls
 It's not only mind and eye following the water, but also the hand itself creating the ripples, rainbows and spray on paper, immersing itself in the waters of calm!

I chose black paper to emphasize the water, the spray, the subtle colors of stream and ponds.  One painting led to another and another and then Eureka!  I was doing a series, and, like a soap opera fiend, wondering about the next installment!, before I had finished one I was working on. I had heard about doing series in art school but never put it to real practice until now.  Doing a series forces us to greater creativity! It's fun. Familiarity with similar color choices pushes to new techniques and new visions, then new color combinations, further technique exploration. Waterfalls in NH are everywhere, and different, not only from season to season, but from week to week. Even day to day if there has been a major storm, or an errant beaver at work. They are a never-ending supply of subject matter.

These five are among the 12 now completed, with two more sitting on my drafting table in various stages of production. I presently have an exhibit at the M&D Theater in North Conway, NH, there until July 5. Stop by if you are near.

Meanwhile, I'll be doing more Oil Pastels of Waterfalls. 

Check out other blog entries and my website for other Scenes of New Hampshire  and my blog, THE GREAT WHITE BARN to check the progress on my gallery.

Oil Pastels on black paper, 9X12.  $90 unframed, $130 framed in black frame.
E-mail me at barbaramcevoy@me.com if interested.








Tuesday, May 2, 2017

MOVING to TOWN: GALAXIES

GALAXIES:  We don't KNOW what we don't know

The night sky has always fascinated me. Many of us living in more populated areas never see the Milky Way. Too much ambient light. But, when we get to a dark place and see it, it IS truly breathtaking.  Moving to New Hampshire, and even moving to town, I'm on the look out for our "Milky Way Nights," clear skies with those lights twinkling away.  

Having never seen the Milky Way, if you get yourself away from cities and crowded suburbs, Look Up! You will recognize the Milky Way.

A natural outcome of being a landscape painter is to realize that the night is part of the world we live in. More appropriately called a skyscape, the night sky deserves representation.
Galaxy Paintings, Acrylics  on canvas with black light.  36 x24 ($300) and 10x10 ($75).


Thanks to two major sources of inspiration, my galaxy series has been evolving.  First influence: the Hubble Telescope. Those photos are incredibly beautiful, reminding us that we really don't know what we don't know. With literally trillions of stars and accompanying planets, whatever else is out there, beyond our own little blue marble, is unfathomable. Star Trek, Star Wars and science fiction can only guess. Hubble has given us real life examples of the beauty and immensity.

Thanks also to the art student/sales person at the Allentown PA Dick Blicks (art supply store), who, hearing me say I was painting galaxies, said, "Do you know about phosphorescent paint?" "No," I replied, "hook me up." She hooked me up to the most fun painting series I've ever done!  Thank you Dick Blick for hiring great sales people.

Galaxy Paintings with regular light.



Added Note: Neither photo is accurate relating to the colors, but the effect is captured. Black light and regular light versions are like two separate paintings. If anyone knows a trick to accurately photographing paintings with phosphorescent paint, please e-mail me.

Addendum 2: How do these relate to "Moving to town"? My old house/studio is still for sale, and my "new" barn is not quite open for business or full scale painting yet. I moved my acrylics to town with me because acrylics dry fast and can't freeze. My pastels and oils, which I use for long range projects, remain at my old studio until I have the "new" studio ready for on-going projects. Having two separate spaces is surprisingly convenient.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

SCENES FROM NEW HAMPSHIRE: MOVING TO TOWN

Oops! Did it again!  Seems when life gets busy, blogging gets lost. 
The trick, I'm told, is to have a reason for blogging and a routine for getting it done. And this time I'm determined to get it done on a reasonable (pun, pun) basis. I am conquering both REASON and ROUTINE.  Really!
REASON 
YOU, you the reader, you the viewer, you the artist, are the reason for both my blog AND my website.My Reason for wanting to blog (and invite you to my website,) is that I want to share my visions. That's what we do when we create....whether it's art in any of its numerous forms, or blogs, or websites.  Sharing our vision is what we do and why we do it all!

My big move last year was actually Moving to Town. I've stated before: Art, Nature and Yoga are INTRICATELY INTERTWINED in all I do. They make my dreams come true!  They took me to art school, they moved me to NH, and now they have MOVED ME TO TOWN! 

The intertwining process is actually quite simple. I became an artist because I loved nature, but I came to love nature more as I painted it because I saw more, which then made me want to see even more...mountain tops, panoramas, up close bugs, leaves, moss and lichens., etc. Breathing, then mindful breathing, stretching and meditating became a natural part of hiking, climbing mountains, paddling kayaks. And these inevitably moved me into deeper yogic concepts of non-violence, contentment, moderation..all of it!
Mt Madison and Madison Spring Hut  (as seen from Airline Trail)  Pastel  12' X 18'
The very act of painting becomes a way to further appreciate what  you are painting because you have to look more closely, notice more. When I paint the trees, I am the trees, when I paint the trails I am hiking them again. My quest? How to share this?
Three on the Ridge     (Crawford Trail between Mitzpah and Lakes Huts)


Hiking with others, introducing my kids and Grandkids to the AMC Huts, (an annual trip now), volunteering for AMC 

Gallery sign at 8 Elm St., Freedom, NH

(Appalachian Mountain Club). We share what we  love, so I definitely have a reason for blogging, for websites, for showing and telling.  

Routine 
Routine is the second trick to "getting it done." I should know about routines...It's how you keep up a yoga practice, become a good runner, lose weight. Set a time and/or an intention, make a plan, and just do it. Sometimes you can skip the plan, or make it up as you go. If I had a routine that was working, moving to town messed with it big time. But MOVING TO TOWN was big time...big time dream come true. 

EXPLANATION: On my first trip to find a NH home, before my official house hunting trip, I drove into the little Village of Freedom, parked in front of the Village Store and walked across the street to admire a big white barn with a gallery sign at the corner of the driveway, and an old cape house, circa  1822. Dream come true, but it wasn't for sale, nor did I have the money. 

Art, nature and yoga all played their part in the next few years. Nature drew me into the mountains, my art became good enough to gain me an invitation to join a co-op gallery where I took my turn sitting and finding out how many people wanted to be artists but didn't have the nerve or the confidence  to try!  and a few people in Freedom were looking for a yoga teacher to teach in Town Hall. I started two yoga classes. Then the property went up for sale, Sept 2015. It took almost a year before "things worked out" but the move-in took place June 7, 2016.

Old houses can have a lot that needs doing, and the Gallery had been a summer only operation. Rehabbing to include a proper studio and winterizing will probably take another 6 months from now, but the plan is evolving into more than a gallery for local artists. I'm seeing it as a busy place for "ART and SPIRIT." For the local artists, but also for yoga classes and yogic exploration! maybe even yoga dance and definitely for art classes and workshops. PLUS I'll finally teach those classes I've been wanting to teach:  "Explore your creativity." "You ARE an artist!" "Find your artistic Roots"! I'm even thinking of a one week "New Horizons: Art Camp for Adults"! Maybe several sessions.
E-mail me if you are interested! Seriously, let me know! barbaramcevoy@me.com
Freedom Gallery
for Art and Spirit

Do I have a routine yet? Not exactly...next week I will start a diet I've been considering, and begin semi-regular blogging. I changed the home page on my website. Check it out, especially if you love the White Mountains. Expect a new home page every two weeks! 

Since MOVING TO TOWN, I have been painting almost regularly, teaching 3 yoga classes a week,  catching up with the gardening (snow shoveling during the winter) and walking Harry the Dog fairly regularly, getting my 10,000 steps in daily, so I'm closer to routine than any time since I moved to New Hampshire. 

Excuse the overlong blog, but it's my promise to me and for those interested it's a glimpse of what's to come, why and a peek into the how!  (remember? art, nature, yoga!)
If you are visiting the eastern side of our state, stop in for a visit, 8 Elm Street, Freedom, "Next to the Church." Give me a chance to share my vision in person.