A moment of Zen

... is something I'm seeking out more frequently lately.

It's true that I work great under pressure. I've always been that way. I may not have liked school very much, but dammit I spent a good 3 days throwing that science project together in 5th grade that came in 1st place at the school's science fair.

This wouldn't necessarily be a problem if I didn't stress out like a nutcase in the time before I decide I ought to get started working on things. I like to take my time to really feel out how risky and dangerous my procrastination is before I'm inevitably struck with the realization that if I don't get moving and keep moving from now until the end, I'll fail. Simple as that. Fear of failure can be very motivating.

I just wish I thought of these things while I still had ample time to finish, so that I could be stress-free AND successful! Alas. Maybe one day.

In the meantime, I've waited just long enough that I'll be spending the next 4 months panicking and working 12 hours a day in order to fulfill my commitments. Also those pesky holidays that I swear seem to happen every single year. Oh, and I'm basically a hospice nurse to my dog right now, which ultimately is one of the most rewarding and depressing things I've ever done in my life. I hate watching him deteriorate, but I'm eternally grateful that I'm able to be here with him and care for him until he decides that he's had enough care and wants to move on to... something else.

Anyway, before I make us all start crying first thing on a Monday afternoon, here's a peek at some new paintings I'm working on:

One is for Gen Kai Japanese Restaurant in Dana Point, and one is for my upcoming show. Both have taken far longer than I anticipated. I'm always trying out new techniques when I don't have time to practice them. Keeps things entertaining for me, I guess. :)

I've started 2 more in addition to these, both for my show. Should be an exciting few months ahead, culminating with my show, and then 5 days later, a trip to Japan.

Maybe I'll find some inner Zen there. Or maybe I'll just run around like a crazy person trying to see, eat, and explore my way through everything I can find. I mean, seriously. It's JAPAN. :oO

The Making Of an Art Show

It's strange to test limits. Not everyone is willing to. People like to play it safe. People like to stick with what works, long past when it's stopped working. I don't want to be one of those people anymore.

No risk, no reward, right?

I've been inspired over the last couple of years. So many artists are finally embracing the future of art and recognizing that we shape our own careers. There isn't going to be some hierarchy of Art Kings to tell us what we should enjoy anymore. Let artists speak for themselves.

The whole point of making art is to show people. So I am. On March 26th, 2011.

This studio space, traditionally used for actors, directors, and performances, will be home to my art for one spectacular night. I love that it's a theater space, on Theater Row in Hollywood. My two greatest artistic passions, acting and painting, seem fused together in this one room.

We're doing all the work ourselves. Fortunately, we have a bit of experience doing this. I spent three years as Creative Director for a local group that put on weekly, monthly, and seasonal artistic events, including large-scale art installations and art festivals.

Yet, despite that, the plans for this show seem daunting. The amount of artwork I'm going to produce is rivaled only by the amount of legwork it's going to take to put on such an event. I know it will be a lot of work, and the entire experience will be terrific education. We're strapped in and ready to go.

As far as actually transforming a theater space into an art show, I'll keep you posted. In fact, I thought it might be fun to document the process on my blog. One of the aspects of event throwing that I distinctly remember is treating each project as a group effort. I want you to come along for the ride with me, and celebrate our success the night of the show.

[For instance, anyone know where to rent easels in Los Angeles? We're not going to be able to hang anything on the walls. So far we're looking into easels and long/low tables.]

Another way you can contribute would be to make a donation to help me cover costs of putting on this show. I promise you that every last cent will be used to produce the show itself.

I'll even send you a thank you card! :D

Or, even better, purchase one of the few Original Paintings I have left, or any of my various 8x10 or 11x14 inch metallic prints. Your support makes my ability to do art possible. I truly value all of you and your interest in my work. Even just your words of encouragement mean the world to me. I always think of my art as "our" art. I just handle the day-to-day dirty work of making each piece. The process and result is something you and I get to experience together. :)

If you're not already on it, Welcome to the Journey. Nice to have you here.

Stardom . 48x30 inches . 2010

1. natural lighting
2. artificial (interior) lighting
3. combined uv and interior lighting
4. uv lighting only
5. no light (glow in the dark)

Ingredients: acrylic, sand, candle wax, a little red wine, crushed glass, phosphorescent pigments, varnish, water & light on canvas. 

 Ahh, purple. Thus begins my love affair with purple.

This truly looks nothing like my original sketch for it, and I'm okay with that. My sketches are usually just jumping off points, from which I create something that inevitably dives into chaos and unpredictability. I like to "guide" my paintings into whatever they're going to be, but I allow the process to play itself out. In many ways, I'm just along for the ride.

I didn't specifically intend for it to be so emotional. It just happened. I'm not quite sure if there's an emotional space in my mind trying to break free or if it's merely a happy accident. I knew it while painting though. Part of me was afraid to let you see it. I wasn't sure what you would think. I wasn't sure what I was saying with it.

Truthfully, it doesn't matter what I was thinking, because once the art is finished it's not up to me how people feel about it. I just make them. I'm working through it as I go. I try to be present and intuitive while working, but the creation itself is my expression. The rest is up to you.

What do you think this painting is about?

Some close ups:

This is the first of many pieces I'm creating for a solo show I'll be having in Hollywood, California on March 26th, 2011. I'll be giving more information about that over the next few months. I hope you can make it. It's going to be incredible. I'm very nervous and very excited. 

If you're interested in acquiring this painting before or after the show, please email me and we'll discuss specifics. :) *UPDATE: This painting is now sold.*