Sunday, March 22, 2015

Colors like words in poems....

Please permit me minute before I begin my post to shamelessly plug my page on facebook. This is where I advertise the custom and personalized things like nursery art, wall art signs, lamps, totes, furniture or whatever. (you get the idea, right?)
The Custom Brush <---click the title and it will take you directly to the site. 

Art updates:
While working on Custom Brush projects, I continue to work on my Surreal Portfolio. 
These pieces are created in acrylics, marker, paint pens, ink, oils, water colors and the small details require a lot of patience. 
Not something that I have been known for in my lifetime. 
But as spring arrives, my spirits are lifted. 
I observe mother nature coming to life and feel inspired. 
An idea was developing in my imagination for a while and would not go away. 
I decided to give in and I am glad that I did. Below are the results.

The paintings details are circular, curving, very fine and some are but small dots. 
But the movement in this piece, that just flowed so beautifully as it came to life. 
 I was very excited to share the new work. In fact, I posted it on my facebook with friends and family immediately. 
I was pleased and excited when the work generated a lot of positive response. 
I am proud to share with you that this piece sold and is now owned by a wonderful patron and friend of mine.  
She was so animated, as she described how this piece affected her, and to me there is no higher compliment to an artist. 

for now it is time to get back to the easel....

I try to apply colors like words that shape poems, like notes that shape music.Joan Miró


Sometimes, I need  to clear the fog,
This is one of those pieces.
It is for sale.
12 x 24 inches
pre-stretched canvas

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Home is within....

To preface today's story, I need to remind you that back in August I turned 50. For months leading up to my birthday I felt a growing sense of urgency, and dread, yet the days continued, coming straight for me in a steady beat, closer and closer. It was becoming an anxiety, this number 50, and every day that passed the unease grew. I began to feel the drum growing louder and louder as days passed with the reminder reverberating in my brain....I am going to be fifty, ARE fifty. 

      What is my story. What have I accomplished, conquered, 
and what fears have I yet to face, on on went these thoughts and worries. 

Then one day, I made a decision. I am going to do something unexpected, challenging and that has always fascinated me. Something I never really considered as an option for various reasons and fears.  Once the decision was made (the easy part), my instincts took over. I began searching, creating, planning and hinting that I was going to do this thing. I don't think anyone really took me serious, except maybe a few who really know me, and I believe they even had their doubts. But, this was all part of the process. I had other self imposed obstacles to face as well. I am terrified of the dentist, mostly because of the smells, but the sounds are disconcerting at best and horrible at worst! (do you know that a tattoo sounds a little like dentist sounds? it does!). I had to work to conquer those issues first, then the second most difficult part was to settle on a final design.  In case you have not figured it out yet, I got a tattoo. 

I love the colorful imagery in tattoo art work these days and am fascinated by the all-white ink tattoos. But, in the end, I settled on a simple line drawing, I asked to use an espresso colored ink. I felt this simple yet curving design best represented my story. Any of you who follow #myviewfrom1502 know that I have this grand love affair with trees,  and often use them as the main subject in my work. 

The words of an artist and poet, Herman Hesse that express what I try to put on canvas: 
"For me, trees have always been the most penetrating preachers. I revere them when they live in tribes and families, in forests and groves. And even more I revere them when they stand alone. They are like lonely persons. Not like hermits who have stolen away out of some weakness, but like great, solitary men, like Beethoven and Nietzsche. In their highest boughs the world rustles, their roots rest in infinity; but they do not lose themselves there, they struggle with all the force of their lives for one thing only: to fulfill themselves according to their own laws, to build up their own form, to represent themselves. Nothing is holier, nothing is more exemplary than a beautiful, strong tree. When a tree is cut down and reveals its naked death-wound to the sun, one can read its whole history in the luminous, inscribed disk of its trunk: in the rings of its years, its scars, all the struggle, all the suffering, all the sickness, all the happiness and prosperity stand truly written, the narrow years and the luxurious years, the attacks withstood, the storms endured. And every young farmboy knows that the hardest and noblest wood has the narrowest rings, that high on the mountains and in continuing danger the most indestructible, the strongest, the ideal trees grow."
Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.
A tree says: A kernel is hidden in me, a spark, a thought, I am life from eternal life. The attempt and the risk that the eternal mother took with me is unique, unique the form and veins of my skin, unique the smallest play of leaves in my branches and the smallest scar on my bark. I was made to form and reveal the eternal in my smallest special detail.
A tree says: My strength is trust. I know nothing about my fathers, I know nothing about the thousand children that every year spring out of me. I live out the secret of my seed to the very end, and I care for nothing else. I trust that God is in me. I trust that my labor is holy. Out of this trust I live.
When we are stricken and cannot bear our lives any longer, then a tree has something to say to us: Be still! Be still! Look at me! Life is not easy, life is not difficult. Those are childish thoughts. . . . Home is neither here nor there. Home is within you, or home is nowhere at all.
A longing to wander tears my heart when I hear trees rustling in the wind at evening. If one listens to them silently for a long time, this longing reveals its kernel, its meaning. It is not so much a matter of escaping from one’s suffering, though it may seem to be so. It is a longing for home, for a memory of the mother, for new metaphors for life. It leads home. Every path leads homeward, every step is birth, every step is death, every grave is mother.
So the tree rustles in the evening, when we stand uneasy before our own childish thoughts: Trees have long thoughts, long-breathing and restful, just as they have longer lives than ours. They are wiser than we are, as long as we do not listen to them. But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the childlike hastiness of our thoughts achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is. That is home. That is happiness. 
If anyone knows where I can find a translated version of this book please let me know!
Bäume: Betrachtungen und Gedichte [Trees: Reflections and Poems] (public library), originally published in 1984, 
#tattoo, #tattooink, #treetattoo, #art, #valeriedowdyart, #myviewfrom1502, #hermanhesse, #trees, #peace, #home

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Snow day....

Mother Nature certainly knows how to distract me and everyone else, with a big ole white fluffy surprise! White and in SNOW...yep I said snow. We've heaps of it piled up, accumulating up to 12-15 inches here in my county, and Depending where you are, some have as much as 24 + inches. And the ringer...? We're supposed to get 3-5 more inches tomorrow! Living in the mountains makes for tricky maneuvering on snowy and icy road conditions, so most of us...stay home!

With lots of time on my hands, and trying diligently not to fall back in to a grief and being depressed, I have been hanging out in my art room. This room makes me happy and productive...I've organized the studio, swept the floor and hung a few special pieces that will have to be pried out of my dead hands one day, back up on to the walls, so that I can feel connected to them again. Meanwhile alternating my audio entertainment between NPR's "ask me another", "wait wait don't tell me" and some "netflix".  

I dove in to my oils, always a pleasure, and began some work on a couple older pieces.  I needed to see if I could revive them. Playing in oils is so addicting....I miss them. I began work on my second lamp project. I am trying my hand at up-cycling on a couple of them and am pretty pleased with their result/progress. 

Throughout,  I've been working on a pouch project for my one of my girls. She's going out of the country in a few months and hates to carry purses/bags. So, I have come up with a "pouch", made from canvas and large enough to stick the necessities in, to and feed a belt through. A sort of cooler, boho style take on the fanny pack. She is very pleased so I am pleased. I just need to finish some details!

Piece One...WIP this one needs a lot of work!

Piece Two-This one was damaged in by fire,
After I finish painting the piece I will remove it from the stretcher bars and see try to reframe
this is a delicate project both because of the damage and because of the emotional attachment

My art desk.
I found a couple yard sale frames a while back,
but just discovered that one of them fits my first ever mixed media piece
I was very happy and excited about this!

Close up of lamp project #2

Lamp Project #1
I love it!

The Pouch
Yep, it is as crocked as you see in this photo
I can come up with the ideas, but I can NOT sew
Oh well...
Now, lets see, what is next.....