Daily rituals, or complete lack thereof.

“Be regular and orderly in your life like a bourgeois, so that you may be violent and original in your work.” -Gustave Flaubert

IMG_1585 I don’t know how violent or original I am in my work but the above quote, along with the research I’ve recently done, has influenced my perspective on how best to structure my day. I’ve been spending some time learning about the routines of influential figures throughout history (mostly while myself procrastinating) and looking for anything consistent or novel among their daily rituals. I’ve held to various morning routines over the years but I’ve always felt that scheduling the day into predictable, consistent time chunks that don’t alter over months and years would result in just too draconian and boring a life.  The sentiments of WIlliam James offered me an alternative perspective,

“The more of the details of our daily life we can hand over to the effortless custody of automatism, the more our higher powers of mind will be set free for their own proper work. There is no more miserable human being than one in (more…)

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The White Test

“Even though white is often associated with things that are pleasant and pure, there is a peculiar emptiness about the color white. It is the emptiness of the white that is more disturbing than even the bloodiness of red.” -Herman Melville, Moby Dick

WhiteTestFinal

In July of 2013 I laid out 14 different types of white oil paint on the same surface, each adjacent to the other, in order to track what sorts of variations would take place over time. I’ve included typed notes next to each swatch that states the white’s brand, name, and oil content. These typed notes should help clarify the scribbling of my messy handwriting. Also, to be clear, I did not store the whites in the dark once I had applied them to the panel (total lack of light causes darkening and yellowing in all oil paints.) The panel was tacked to the wall and exposed to northern light, not darkness and not direct sunlight. I learned some interesting things within days and weeks of starting this experiment.

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Marshall, Merit, and Microscopes

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Lucia /chalk and pencil on toned paper/18×22″

I’ve had my studio here in Marshall, NC for over six years now.  I had no illusion of this small town offering me exposure to larger galleries or wealthy collectors and neither of those hopes flourished to keep me here.  What drew me to stay on in this small outpost north of Asheville was an environment conducive to merit. The low cost of living, the reprieve and revitalization of the mountain trails and swimming holes, the time for projects of importance, the community that values all these in the name of a life that isn’t slave to reaction; all this combines to allow for quality, the making of something, whether it be paintings or another art form, that is unrushed, cared for, and true to the makers vision. (more…)

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