Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A Delinquent Painter in a Green, Green World

Over the weekend my bean plant turned into something from "Little Shop of Horrors."  The biggest leaves are only slightly smaller than my hand, and are part of the sprout that was, as of last Friday, the runt of the litter.  I love this stage of growth because you can actually see the tendrils moving if you look carefully enough.  I find the reaching gestures of these tropisms so creaturely that I start thinking of the plant as a pet.  One day last year I was sitting for a while with my back turned to my bean plant, and a tendril actually reached into my hair and tangled itself up.  

Things are growing and glowing green outside of my studio as well.  The rain has turned everything the brightest shade of green, including the tree outside my bedroom window:

I was a delinquent blogger last week, mostly because I was also a delinquent and unfocused painter.  If I had a nickel for every minute I spent staring off into space....

But no more!  I truly need to get my butt back in gear because I will be teaching full time almost all summer, so my studio time will suffer a bit.  This means that I must seize the day and begin planning for my LynnArts show in September.  I'm extremely excited about this show and I want to unveil lots of new work, so I've hatched a plan of attack to allow for maximum productivity:  I'm going to (oh my God, finish it already!) finish the above tent-birdcage-beanstalk painting that has been languishing in my studio for the last millennium.  Last week I averaged only one new beanstalk per day, which is completely unacceptable.  Next, I will start another big landscape piece over the course of the next few weeks, while I have longer stretches of time to develop the imagery.  Once I start my summer teaching extravaganza I will come back to my smaller, simpler egg portraits and my series of birds on tea-stained paper.  These little paintings will be a lot easier for me to work on when I'm really exhausted after work.  

So there it is.  That's the plan.  Wait a minute!  I haven't been slacking after all!  I've been strategizing.  Yeah, that's it.  Strategizing.

Last week I also made this picture of jumbo downy woodpeckers menacing a house in Newton.  
I like these paintings (see my previous few posts), because if you don't look carefully, you miss the strange scale.  At first glance the houses just look like bird houses.  I'm going to put more obvious clues in the next installments of this series.  I envision a large installation of these pieces, where the more obviously menacing scale of the birds in some paintings (ie. chickadee hauling off a VW van) might make the viewer revisit these more subtle images and discover their strangeness.  

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