Leather wings - Progress

Saturday, February 28, 2009

After forming each individual feather for the first wing, I realized
it wasn't going to work the way I hoped it would so I changed my
design. I worked most of the day on this pair. There are several more
layers to go and then I plan to either paint them or stain them. They
are going to be a wall piece, not wearable. I do plan on doing
something in the middle to join them. Not sure just yet.

Leather wings

Thursday, February 26, 2009

I'm also making a set of leather wings. Using the same drawing I used
for my wooden wings- I'm just forming each feather individually to
give it a more dimensional look. I can tell that this project will
take awhile.

Loosening up

So, I'm trying to loosen up a little, let a few drips happen...Still
not sure how I feel about it. I'm open to some feedback...

Pondering "Self-confidence"

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Wikipedia says: Self-confidence does not necessarily imply 'self-belief' or a belief in one's ability to succeed. For instance, one may be inept at a particular sport or activity, but remain 'confident' in their demeanour, simply because they do not place a great deal of emphasis on the outcome of the activity. The key element to self-confidence is, therefore, an acceptance of the myriad consequences of a particular situation, be they good or bad. When one does not dwell on (negative) consequences, one can be more 'self-confident' because one is worrying far less about failure or (more accurately) the disapproval of others following potential failure. They are then more likely to focus on the actual situation, which means that enjoyment and success in that situation is also more probable. If there is any 'self-belief' component, it is simply a belief in one's ability to tolerate whatever outcome may arise; a certainty that one will cope irrespective of what happens. Belief in one's abilities to perform an activity comes through successful experience and may add to, or consolidate, a general sense of self-confidence.

Confidence, Wikipedia Style

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Confidence is generally described as a state of being certain, either that a hypothesis or prediction is correct, or that a chosen course of action is the best or most effective. Self-confidence is having confidence in oneself. Arrogance or hubris in this comparison, is having unmerited confidence--believing something or someone is capable or correct when they are not. Overconfidence or presumptuousness is excessive belief, in someone or something, succeeding, without any regard for failure. Scientifically, a situation can only be judged after the aim has been achieved or not. Confidence can be a self-fulfilling prophecy, as those without it may fail or not try because they lack it, and those with it may succeed because they have it, rather than because of an innate ability.

Work in progress

Safe haven

Saturday, February 21, 2009

I got to spend two days at my acme studio this weekend. I am really
warmed by how supportive everyone is there. We are like a family and
it's so good to know they are in my corner, pulling for me to succeed,
taking time to critique my work, listening to me vent, and giving out
tons of hugs. I just feel loved tonight and that's a good thing.

Taking shape

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My sculptural piece is starting to take shape. Coated it all in wax,
then painted it in various shades of reddish browns. The paints are
oils, so it needs to dry more before I tackle the next steps.


Friday, February 13, 2009

I subscribe to a weekly newsletter from Robert Glen, The Painter's Keys. I like this excerpt from his latest:

Artists need to learn to be their own best critics.

Artists need to go to their rooms and hone their styles.

Artists need to fall in love with their own processes.

Artists need to march to their own drummers.

Artists need to constantly ask, "What could be?"

Almost all artists need to further sensitize themselves to their subject matter and their passions, as well as to the further possibilities of their chosen media. They need to think ahead and work their plans. They need to be impulsive and audacious. Artists need to be--artistic.

Work in Progress

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The anatomy refresher I'm getting in my figure drawing class made me start thinking about what the anatomy of a bird's wing looks like. Before starting this painting, I distressed the paper by wetting it with vinegar and rubbing coffee grounds into it. Then continued to alternate between gesso and coffee grounds until I got a nice surface. Then I painted on a wash of white acrylic. I normally work in oils, so the fast drying time of the acrylic is something I need to try and get the hang of. Just a little challenge for myself. Distressed paper seems to be a thing here.

New piece

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I went down to woodworking and learned how to use a few new tools.
This piece will be similar to the first one except suspended in space.
Just now building up the textural layers.

Something I've been working on

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Mixed media, and a lot of wax.

Still Alive

I just wanted to take a minute to say...I'm still alive. I haven't been blogging too much lately because to be truthful, I've been a little down, and feeling frustrated. I thought when I got to grad school I'd be learning all kinds of new things, instead, I have been challenged to reinvent my style but with little direction. Basically, I am struggling to teach myself new things but continually missing the mark. I just wanted to learn to weld, make jewelry, sculpt, throw a pot, screenprint, dye fabric, etc. Learn the basics of all the things I don't know how to do so I can grow as an artist and think about how I can incorporate the new techniques into my own work. But this semester I have a drawing class (which I'm kind of liking...I need the practice), an art history class (kind of liking it...and get to write a paper about an artist I am interested in), and a painting class that amounts to an independent study. You might say, wow Les, how great, you can just do what you want in there. Yes...and no. Production is expected, and I keep trying to move forward but continue to get a negative or only so-so response from my professor. He makes suggestions, I try to figure out things and give them a try...but still don't get good feedback. I'm just not used to feeling so "exposed". I like working in my studio at ACME where I'm free to try things and if they fail, well, sit and think on it for awhile and if I want to try again, ok. If not, no problem. Plus, I'm used to doing art for the fun of just making things and creating. And taking enough time to make it the right way. I like seeing how one little experiment can lead to a whole series, or one big piece. Here, well it's all about the deep meaning behind it and why you make this color choice or that. How it relates to your work as a whole, etc. Over thinking it all the time has taken the magic out of it for me. I am finding that my tiny sparks are snuffed out before they ever even get a chance to start smoking. Sigh.....I'm pushing through though. I haven't posted any of the stuff I've been working on because I don't feel confident about any of it.

Body Show

Sunday, February 1, 2009

We got to check out the famed Body Exhibition at the Luxor this
afternoon. It was unbelievable. You get a chance to see real bodies,
and muscles, bones, organs, flayed skin, and more. I even got to
touch a large intestine. That's a once in a lifetime opportunity.
The whole thing is ethically questionable though, because the bodies
are rumored to Chinese political prisoners.

Scenic Route

Today we took a nice drive off the "strip" to see Red Rock. Breath

New Toys!

My friend DJ, who lives in Indonesia, brought me several really awesome antique copper batiking stamps. I can't wait to try these out.

Breakfast in Little Paris

There's a lot of food in Vegas, and many colorful places to eat at.
This morning we had our fill in little Paris.