Busy weekend! In addition to making sure my mom is settled back in at home after a 4-week stay in transitional care (after suffering a broken pelvis), including getting all her laundry caught up and reorganizing her sewing area, I managed to make good progress on several projects:
I'm a bit late to post this - the opening reception for the 2015 "Women" exhibit was held on Friday March 6th. It was supposed to be from 7-10 pm, preceded by a panel discussion from 6-7 pm. When we arrived at 7:15 the panel discussion was still going on .... and when we left at 8, it was still going on.
But, it was a nice exhibit. We got to see some wonderful pieces by some very talented artists. A few photos have been posted on the exhibit facebook page.
Below is a shot of me next to my painting, and the accompanying narrative. One of these days I may learn how to smile in photographs.
I finished the Winter Dirndl painting yesterday. At least I think it's finished ... well, it has to be. It looks more like my mother than any of the previous attempts to get the facial features right. I'm not sure I can get it any "better", so rather than risk messing it up, I'm calling it done. Now I just need to find a frame and get it ready to hang (the frame in the photo is courtesy of picmonkey.)
The Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit (CAID) has an annual "Women" art exhibit which runs in conjunction with the observance of March as Women's History Month. Each year the National Women's History Project selects a theme for participating organizations to focus on during the month. This year's theme is “Weaving The Stories of Women’s Lives." CAID has introduced a sub-theme to their exhibit this year: “Our Mentor.”
The CAID organization has been around since 1979. I've lived in the Detroit area and in SE Michigan most of my life and never knew about this place. Thanks to the wonders of the internet and social media, I do now.
I submitted the Winter Dirndl painting for inclusion in this year's exhibit and it was accepted. I also included some background information about the piece and my mom's history along (see below) l which I hope can be displayed beside the painting.
CAID "Women” Exhibition details
Dates: March 6th - March 29th
Pre-show Discussion & Panel “Women in Art”: March 6th 6-7pm
Opening Reception: March 6th 7-10pm
Curated by Myett Risker
I'm quite excited to be a part of this!
When my mom moved from her house into an apartment about 5 years ago, her photo albums pretty much fell apart. We spent quite a bit of time sorting through old family photos, which included my grandma's and dad's pictures as well - scanning them, writing down some of the names of people in the photos and the stories behind them, before they are forgotten.
One of her favorites is a photo of her at around age 20 wearing a dirndl (traditional German dress) she made out of winter-weight fabric. I always liked that one too.
I wondered if I could create a decent painting from that photo. So of course I had to try. As you can see, the photo is sepia-toned. I didn't want to stick to just those tones for the painting, and didn't want to go full color either ... so I tried for a middle ground, and like the way it's turning out - sort of a lightly colorized vintage look.
Then I started getting ideas about other paintings I could do from our old photos. I have a whole series planned out already (if only I could paint as fast as I can conjure up ideas!) I almost wish I had thought of that before, and chosen a different photo to start with, because finishing this one is turning out to be tougher than I expected.
Doing justice to my mother's beautiful 20-year-old face is not easy. I have reworked the details of the face three times now and am still not satisfied with it. This is much harder than painting a stranger. Especially since she will see it when it's done, and I want her to see herself in it and like how I portrayed her.
So along comes this call for entries for an annual exhibit on women at the Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit. Right before the deadline I decided to enter this 98% finished portrait. It has been accepted for the exhibit. Now I MUST finish it.
The painting needs to be dropped off at the gallery February 28th.
Thank goodness I tend to work well with deadlines.