Thursday, November 12, 2015

Going all natural

When my parents come to visit us over here in the city, my Dad ALWAYS makes sure to bring his little cooler full of beer. Now, you'd think that he was packing this amazing microbrew only found in the remotest area of the Colorado mountains, but in fact he packs....wait for

.......Natural Light. 

Yep, he brings his cooler of Natty light to our the city.....with 2 liquor stores within a block & 3 breweries in walking distance. Because Lord knows the kids have beer Armageddon going on in their fridge with their "Modus Hoperandi" & their "Rogue dead guy", not to mention their "Fat tire" & Hazed & Infused". 

This behavior is what I like to call: the Doomsday Prepper, Redneck style. It's what happens to my Dad when he visits us in the city. He must be totally prepared, armed with his Natural Light, protected in his own cooler from the likes of "Sweaty Betty Blond" (Dad it's a wheat beer) & "Wooly Booger Nut Brown Ale (I really really want to see his face when he reads the label)

Dad's Cooler (2015)
Acrylic on panel board 5x7

The city is a scary place, so just kick back, relax, & just watch all the sweaty, hazed & infused dead guys go rouge on their critical mass fat tires chasing Betties from your high rise balcony with your cooler of Natural light. 

Ahhhhhhhhhh, Just. Like. Home. 

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Mastering group therapy

Every year I struggle with Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD (which is such a wonderful pun of an abbreviation). It's not terrible. It's just something I've always had; it's a part of me, just like so are my arms. This year, in preparation to combat SAD, I decided to go into "therapy".

My therapy was not typical and some may consider it not "real" therapy. But I've done "real" therapy before, I can honestly say that my therapy was real. 

My therapist name was Karen Roehl
My therapy was called Introduction to Acrylic Painting. 

Each week I would join a group of artists and we would have "therapy". 
There were about 12 people in my session and each coming from different backgrounds, but all of us having that overwhelming need to create through paint. Each week all of us working on our paintings and doing "art" exercises,  but also not realizing that this class was much more than just an introduction to painting. This class was therapy. This class was art. This class was essentially about life. 

  •  You can choose to paint from your brain or your gut. Your brain will trick you and scare you and, well, your gut won't. You're gut has your best interest (your creative juices), while your brain keeps you safe and alive. 
  • "There is no such thing as a failed painting. It just needs more layers on it." 
  •  Sometimes you don't know where the painting will take you, maybe you make a mark by accident and you think: "Wow, I really like how that looks. I'm just going to keep that."
  • Don't be afraid to paint over what you think is your best part of the painting. Most likely, there's another layer you put on that will be better. 

Every week I looked forward to therapy. It made my whole week manageable and happier. I didn't even notice that I was SAD. I would say that it was time and money well spent. Here is my master study from my group therapy. (A master study is when you copy someone else's artwork, to improve your own....this helps with learning brush strokes, color mixing, layering and deciding what colors were laid down first, etc.) 

Master Study of
Arbre couche 1923-1924
by Chaim Soutine

Thank God for therapy, in all it's forms. 
I now will refer to SAD as my Seasonal Art Disorder.