I love photoshop as much as the next person, but in my heart of hearts, I miss the old photography, where what you saw was a record of what happened. Now, it is too easy to make the outlandish feasible. Gullible minds (and the US seems to have an abundance of them) believe what they see. Dennis McFarland in his novel, "School for the Blind" has a character say, "'things happen, and then you have to make sense of them.' That he explained is what a photograph is all about --'it stops things, freezes things so you can think about the implications, so you can contemplate the ramifications.'" There is no doubt that computers have altered the landscape. I'm not saying I don't like the new art form of photography, just that I miss the un-doctored certainty. The above is the jacket photo of my father and two chimps for the book "Animal IQ" from 1950. I was two at the time, but I assume the chimps were real.
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Monday, December 13, 2010
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Thursday, November 18, 2010
This morning I tried to apply gold foil to canvas. Never have I felt so awkward. I succeeded in gilding myself, my rug, my burnishing brushes, my computer and everything else within 6 feet of the canvas. How does one transfer micron-thin gold leaf to canvas evenly?
Monday, November 8, 2010
Today, I covered three paintings with a layer of white. Fresh start, less inventory. Huzzah.
Sunday, October 31, 2010
A little girl came into my studio yesterday and headed right for "sink,sank,sunk" which was leaning against the wall. She pushed her hands into the canvas trying to turn the faucets. Her mother shrieked, grabbed the little girl's arm and dragged her, in full wail, from the studio.
One of my better reviews, I think....
Thursday, October 28, 2010
Monday, October 25, 2010
I thought painting a raw chicken would make me squeamish but it turned out to be a delightful experience.
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
This is Damien Hirst's Armaggedon. It is composed of dead flies and glue.
Scott Burdick's gave a speech "The Banishment of Beauty" that is available on Youtube. His thesis is that modern art is driven by critics and investors to the detriment of classical beauty. He contends museums and galleries actively avoid art considered realistic or beautiful. (He notes that a museum had a workshop with prominent plein-air painters, to raise money that would enable the museum to buy more modern/ugly art.) Some people are labeling his argument simplistic or sour grapes.
I went college in the late sixties when abstract art was all the rage. One professor told me my work looked like smudge by numbers. I stopped painting for 30 years.
I admire a good deal of modern art. Shaun Richards has a show at the Target Gallery that is thrilling in its layers of commentary and visual impact. My art doesn't have a subtext or global meaning. And for a while now, I've felt bad about that. Inadequate, actually. Scott Burdick's speech makes it easier not to wince when someone calls my work "pretty."
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
I am painting for a food show in April 2011. I've come to realize a lot of food is brownish, which isn't much fun. I think I've got fruit, seafood and vegetables covered. Meat could be problematic. Cooked, it's brown; raw, it's prettier, but there's a certain ick factor.
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
I could not be the person I am today, sitting in a brightly lit studio, were it not for Dr. Stuart Stark. I had been painting a few years, mostly crippled efforts, until Dr. Stark liberated me. The cure he proposed, which I think of as the Elvis Presley regimen, won't work for everyone. I take Ritalin three times a day and a sleeping pill at night. I have been migraine free for nine years. I don't ever want to go back to those dark days.http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/pages/cindy-packard-richmond/137919006225893?ref=sgm
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Monday, September 20, 2010
This is a painting of the "Sisyphus" porch on the Vineyard. I thought it was finished until Carol Dupre dropped by my studio and told me the perspective was all wrong. She was, as always, right.
So I reworked perspective. But the piece still didn't work. My imagination was at fault.
It's hard to admit as an artist (and former novelist), that my imagination is limited. Or at least, does not translate. I have to see something to paint it. My friends, Susan Makara, Sheep Jones and others paint from their imaginations ALL the time. I could not even invent a plausible chair and table.
I paint what I see. It is, I hope, different from what others would see looking at the same object. Otherwise, why bother?
One of my strengths as an artist is a willingness to rip a piece apart and start over.
The table and chair are now gone. Kicked back to the paltry recesses of my imagination.http://www.facebook.com/pages/cindy-packard-richmond/137919006225893?ref=sgm
Thursday, September 16, 2010
And he's right.
The kitchen is periodically stocked with good tools, but after a season of rentals, everything is dulled, broken or missing.
Maybe the tenants are doing us a favor.
There has to be some lure to leave the Vineyard for the real world. For Vance, it's decent cutlery. For me, it is my oils. I purposely didn't take them with me, the better to soak in all that the Vineyard offers. I'm gestating now. Tomorrow, I'm back in the studio.
Friday, September 10, 2010
I did not start painting until she died, and only then to feel closer to her. I avoided Vineyard landscapes for a long time. She was much better at them than I will ever be. But I'm better at still lifes. Go figure...
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
This is the house my parents bought in 1953 on Martha's Vineyard. It's the heart and soul of our extended family. Upkeep is a challenge, to put it mildly. The original owner (1905) aptly named her "the house of winds". Doors slam suddenly and without provocation. She's survived many a hurricane, but the salt sea air digs at her. For as long as I can remember, I have spent my vacation scraping the four sets of stairs and porch trim. (Someone else paints) Every year. For 50 weeks a year I paint in my studio at home or in Studio 3 of the Torpedo Factory in Alexandria, Virginia. For two weeks a year, I scrape.