Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Good Advice

- Martha Graham to Agnes DeMille -

“There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique.  And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how valuable it is, nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open.  You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate YOU.  Keep the channel open… No artist is pleased…  There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer, divine dissatisfaction; a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.”

 Now the next question is should I reveal all the skin on the ladies or keep that magic effect I happened into today?  On one hand, the artists we're "homage-ing" had them nude, but I'm charmed by the color and texture on their bodies....  tough decision...

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

It's all a Blur - or Not

"Blurring the lines of photography and illustration makes the viewer engage with the image and make decisions about the content and the presentation."  Bruce Gregory, California photographer.

Joe Nalven is one of the biggest voices of support for digital art.  While he is an Anthropology professor in his 9 to 5 life, he is also a wonderful digital artist, photographer and ring leader of a band of merry digital image makers around the world but centered in San Diego manifesting in cyberspace as the Digital Arts Guild.  Yes, I'm a member too and have participated in several of their exhibitions in the San Diego area, while I still lived in Northern California.  

Recently I've been working on my 3 Graces for Environmental Awareness images in preparation for my show at Akari in September. Keeping the photos as is or transforming them into paintings had been a major creative decision that I really struggled with, until I read Nalven's piece.  Kudos to you Joe for being there when I needed it! I'm lucky to have such artist friends in my life and I truly treasure them.  They are remarkable when they show up in my life when I need them.  

But now, 2 weeks since I wrote the above,  I'm rethinking my concept.  It's begun to feel somehow phoney or fakey.  For this project, I don't think it's the right thing anymore.  Now I'm going back to my digital "roots" if you will of working with photographs where I use the chance aspect of certain blending modes to make the art.  This is feeling right to me.

Another artist that I truly admire - Bilhenry Walker - who I've known since we lived in Milwaukee - just emailed me something that is so true.  You have to do it sometimes in order to see if it will work or not.  So OK, I tried it.  But didn't like it even though it doubles the work that I will need to do in order to finish them in time to get to the printers.  But ya know, some days it goes that way.