Lavina Blossom Art

Where Art Matters

The challenge for last month’s collage group (Cut and Paste Club) was to create a collage from one image or photo or page. I used one magazine pages for each of these and made quite a few. Here are the better ones so far. I don’t think I’m finished doing these yet. I’m surprised by what I’m able to come up with, and I recommend this prompt to anyone who feels at all stuck.

I have been creating 6×6 landscape paintings that are on cradled board or cradled canvas (1.5 inches deep, so no frame needed.). I sold the first 3 at the Riverside Art Museum’s recent 6×6 fundraiser, and the other 3 will be in the Chaffey Community Museum’s gallery store (in Ontario, CA) soon. I have several larger landscapes that I will work on when I’ve finished a few more of these. These don’t require any fewer hours to complete, yet I find them equally satisfying–because I can see them all at once and they feel more intimate than the larger paintings. Also, I can approach them, because of their size, as more playful (child size) and feel less pressure to create works that are impressive. That frees me up. I’m a little more relaxed working smaller. I wonder how others feel about that.

Since March, I joined a collage group that meets once a month to share work responding to a prompt. For our last Zoom meeting, we made pieces from recycled material. I cleaned out old catalogs and sifted through the waste basket…love this kind of recycling. I also took a 3-week online course with Lewis Noble, a British artist, and I had my 2 doses of the Covid vaccine. After recovering from a monster headache the day after the second shot, and a couple smaller headaches in the following week, I now feel well, relieved to be safer (not totally safe) from the virus, and more positive about the future. But shame on India’s Prime Minister Modi for his wretched inaction to protect the people of his country!

Deep breath. I have missed friends, yet have relished having this time at home to feel my way toward creating pieces that give me so much pleasure and comfort.

Below, a collage, a painting on paper, and a painting on board:

This Can’t Be Right, collage on paper
Acrylic on paper
AL (Abstract Landscape) #1 – mixed media on board, 8×8: Available on FASO.

I chose a bouquet that turned out to be difficult to paint because I could not create a pleasing color arrangement. Two of the flowers were white and one of those white ones was almost directly at the middle top of the vase. (Didn’t get a photo of this.) I kept painting, added collage, and was liking the painting less and less. The arrangement looked top heavy, so I made the vase fatter, made all the flowers red, and finally, frustrated, I altered the painting with apps, found a few I liked the look of, and consulted those to make a more abstract flatter art piece. Here are two phases of the painting (finished painting first) and a photo of the still life. I like the shape of the actual vase better, and plan to attempt this one again with a slightly different design.

Rose in a Glass

I was impressed that several friends have taken on the STRADA 31-day painting challenge and are painting every day this month from life. My husband bought a bouquet of roses from Trader Joe’s, but several of the stems were broken off near the flower, so a shallow “vase” was needed (my smallest water glass.) What a pleasure to paint from life again. I still have another vase of red roses to paint, while they are sort-of fresh, if I’m quick.

I admire many artists who continue to work in a single genre exclusively, such as landscapes, abstracts, portraits…and perhaps use the same media while continuing to make exciting and varied work. It may be that I have a short attention span, although I think my need to work in different genres and with different mediums also has to do with all that I want to learn. Of course the landscape painter is always learning, as is the abstract painter and the portrait painter, and so on. Moving around as I do, I may be learning more slowly in each area. But I can’t do otherwise than create work that draws me to it and gives me the most joy and satisfaction. Here are a few (varied) pieces created recently.