Tuesday, June 28, 2011

art and all that

So I am taking the LAST class of the MFA, the one I had to put off due to teaching (a person can only do so much.) Anyhow, it's called Survey of Southern California Contemporary Artists, taught by Professor Mike McGee who I'm convinced has some sort of genius memory about all this. We saw a presentation on an "artist" last night, I can't remember his name, but I got so worked up during the presentation I doodled dragons with big nasty fangs. Oooh scary, I know. This "artist" tries to make "art" that no one recognizes as art, and then doesn't name or sign it, so it can't be catalogued (?). Like, for instance, he made a drinking fountain that looks just like a drinking fountain and works like a drinking fountain, out of mundane drinking fountain materials, and then "installed" it on a college campus in a place where you would normally find a drinking fountain. And didn't sign in, just in case you might wonder if that drinking fountain is actually art masquerading as a drinking fountain. !?! I HOPE he did not get a grant for this. There are other equally obnoxious "pieces of art" or non-art art, or whatever, that he has made, but I am going to end my rant. I just don't get it.

On that note, there are also those people who don't really think illustration is art. But I'm not one of them. And so I am posting a little thing I had to get done for a show. I much prefer this silly sort of art to any art that tries not to exist...

Saturday, June 25, 2011

It's been a week of solid freelance. I busted out a lot of work this week and feel I deserve some face-down-in-the-sand time. Woo hoo! I finished a cool little Flash animation for a client, and the new Surfside Girls page, plus all of the work for this last CSUF class, which is a 45 minute video presentation on video artist Diana Thater, best known for her work on The Cove. Today I'm speaking at the LA Society of Illustrators with my friend Marilyn Scott-Waters and Professor Cliff Cramp, and I have one more little painting to finish. I predict beach time tomorrow morning after church.

All of this productiveness is really not helping my tan. Or really the cleanliness of my office. I think I'm going to start scheduling in beach and cleaning time. Does anyone have any suggestions for keeping a creative space clean? That doesn't involve a ton of money?

I'm posting some things that have been done for a while, and some I finished last night. :)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Oh Canada!

Just got back from a MUCH NEEDED vacation to the Great White North. Some good friends had a son get married, and we went to the reception in Saskatchewan, and then on to the end of the known universe, the Stockman Lodge Fish Camp. So so beautiful- after driving across most of Canada, then float-planing (!) in to an island, we relaxed in utter bliss. It was SO QUIET. I read, fished, hiked, and painted. Bald eagles were nesting just across the lake. I wish I could go there yearly and totally de-stress. My son got spoiled; now he thinks that fishing means dropping a line in totally clean water, in an uncrowded, beautiful environment, and multitudes of fish compete for the privilege of your lure! Anyhow, here are some photos, and also a little of my sketch journal.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

my street and a potato head

Life is pretty good. If I had to complain, which I shouldn't, I guess my house and my waist have borne the brunt of grad school. However, with a little scrubbing and organizing, and a little extra running (and some good surf days!) life should be back in order. No permanent damage.

On the positive side, this is my street right now, thick in the middle of Jacaranda bloom. It's ridiculously messy and stinky, but just look at how awesome. Some days, first thing in the morning, all of the lawns and cars are covered in flowers, and it looks like it snowed purple. People have been coming by and taking photos, so I figured I would too.

Then there's the potato head, or Why I Teach. My Cartooning and Caricature students had me crying the last day of class as they presented me this Pirates of the Caribbean Potato Head, signed by the class. They are most awesome, this class, and this is currently one of my most prized possessions. I am looking for a vase shelf to put him on for my office. It pretty much sums up why I teach- I love getting so involved in these little young artists' lives. Plus, I know that at least half of the people on the Potatohead will be famous some day, and then he's going to be a very valuable Potatohead!

I am off to Canada for ten days, for a wedding reception, and then up to a fly-in fishing camp, where I will sleep and read and paint while the man and the boy fish and hunt things. Maybe I'll paint a fish.