Center for Healthy Generations.

Skyscapes for the Soul in Yucca Valley

Art and yardsale items. This is a first for me. I wanted to buy one of the hats, but I wasn’t allowed.

I was accepted to have a month-long solo show in what is considered an ‘alternative’ space – i.e. not a regular gallery. This is the Center for Healthy Generations in Yucca Valley. It’s quite an active center with a pretty full schedule of activities. When I arrived to hang my work, Darla, my handler – said there had been some dissent over the time of my hanging because they were setting up for an indoor yardsale on Friday.

yvhlc2That was the bad news,  the good news being that lots* of people would see my work. Right behind the yardsale items. I had to stand on the tables and tiptoe between the partially completed display of yardsale items to hang my work. Fortunately I did not stand on the hands of the lady below me trying to arrange items while I trod between them.

yvhlc3Then there’s space on the other wall for two large paintings. Here, my progress was hampered by the fact that a yoga class was in session and I had to wait until they’d finished before we could put the last two paintings up.

Yes, there’s going to be a lot* of people who see my work in the next month!

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Chaparral Artists Show

Chaparral Artists Show

First and Third in Abstracts

Each year, Chaparral Artists, a group of artists in Yucca Valley and the surrounding area, hold a judged show at Rainbow Stew for painting.  It’s a small group and a small show – they have a photography-only show next month and many more of their members are photographers.  I took some work in on Friday and was able to attend the reception Sunday afternoon.  I had five entries and three of them won ribbons! I got a second in landscapes for ‘Dark Water, White Wave‘, a third in Abstracts for ‘Night Watch‘ and a First in Abstracts for ‘Sun through Rain‘.  Raini Armstrong took a well-deserved first in Landscapes and it also got Best in Show.  Enjoy some pics of the whole show!

Chaparral Artists Show

Animals/Wildlife.  The dragon, second from right was my pick for people’s choice award!

Chaparral Artists Show

More Animals/Wildlife. The one on the bottom left also to People’s Choice award

Chaparral Artists Show

Raini’s Best of show painting at top

Chaparral Artists Show

Florals. I really liked the one on the left.

Chaparral Artists Show

Some more landscapes. I was fighting to take the photo with the light on the glass

Chaparral Artists Show

Portraits

Chaparral Artists Show

Two of my oils in the landscape section with the one that took 2nd place

Tales from the Field #2

Here’s an icebreaker I’ve been using for years – finally thought to take the picture to go with it, and found a willing victim in Boulder City yesterday.

oddshoesSomeone walks by, or walks in with a ‘boot’ on.  I’ll sneak up to them and ask “Don’t you just hate it…….when you go somewhere nice……….and when you get there, you realize………..you’re wearing odd shoes?”

This lady was with her husband, so I then asked her whether she sustained the injury because she kicked him for snoring.  She had a great come-back.  “No, but I can now!”

April one year I had that conversation then asked the lady what she’d done.  She said she’d had a new ankle the prior July, but it had broken again.  Oh, I asked – is it still under warranty?

Paint Pink

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Last night I went to Calexico to the Paint Pink show reception.  This is a breast-cancer awareness themed show – and the requirements were anything to do with breast-cancer or anything pink.

 

 

 

 

 

 

PP1The reception was quite well attended – I got there a little late so some had already left.  One thing that I did notice was that most of the work was very small!

 

PP2

It was wonderful though to see that there were quite a few sales.

 

 

 

PP3My work was definitely the largest there – and I didn’t even photo most of it. You can just see the two smallest ones on the right here.  The ones I chose to take were my most pink work, I don’t have anything specifically to do with breast cancer.

Starting somewhere.

Mixed media painting

#1266, City Dawn. Mixed media on panel, 12×12″. Lives with Melissa in Palo Alto.

One of my sales at Palo Alto last weekend was to a young lady wanting to start an art collection, though not having much of a place of her own to put it.  I’m going to share an article in the Atlanta Magazine a few months back, that encourages the beginning collector and takes some of the fear out of it.

One thing they mentioned was “Gallerists are people too.” Talking to gallerists – and artists at art fairs and receptions – is not scary!  There aren’t really any stupid questions, though there are some with obvious answers, but it’s ok – we’ve heard them before and we’re happy to answer the anyway as a way to start talking to you about things you’d like to understand about the work in question.  After all, you wouldn’t buy a car or house without asking a lot of questions.  And the art might stay longer in your life than either of those.

Tales from the field #1.

I’ve been thinking for some time that I’ll add a ‘Tales from the Field’ thread to my blog because funny stuff does happen out there.  But this weekend just gone I had quite an experience with my airbnb location, which is something I can’t contain!  One of those things that you’ll laugh at later…..or in some cases, at the time….

So having taken an inadvisable “short”cut in the high desert, I ended up arriving at the Bay Area airbnb in the dark, which made arriving particularly difficult because I couldn’t see the map sufficiently in the dark and was on the wrong street at one point, thinking that the house didn’t exist.

When I did find it, it was one of those airbnb-only houses, a monster tract home with five bedrooms, all rented out, and an unused space which would normally be the dining room part of the kitchen, with a sofabed and a couple (flimsy) room dividers. I’ve done the “corner-cupboard” kind of set-up before and the price is right.  Before I continue, I have to point out that all the others in the place (I figure there were up to 9) were nice respectful people who didn’t make a lot of noise, play loud music etc. and it was all quite clean.

However the communal area – a large living room that was set up as a work area, the dining and kitchen areas, were all laminate floors and my sofa was the only soft furnishing.  It was an echo chamber.  And open plan, so if the light was on anywhere, it lit the whole place.

So I settled in to sleep.  Or try to.  Then realizing no one was downstairs I got up and turned off the light.  The fridge was unreasonably noisy and never seemed to cycle off.

Oh and the house is right on a flight path to an airport.

Later, the nice couple in the downstairs bedroom had their friends over.  They left the light on in the communal area and I got up and turned it off.  They chatted in the downstairs bedroom.  Not loudly, just normally, and the other good part was they weren’t speaking English, so it was a little easier to try to ignore, but even with their door shut, it’s still an echo chamber.  People crept in quietly and left the light on and twice more I got up to turn it out.  At 12:30am someone got up from the chatty group and chopped fruit in the kitchen for a snack.  They finally went to bed about 2am and realizing I finally had silence, I relaxed enough to sleep.

I had to get up at 3:30am to go to the show. 🙂 What’s the emoticon for zombie, again?

Saturday night I walked out to go to a nearby restaurant, which was fine, and with 1 hours sleep in the last 40 and two glasses of wine, I slept.  The fact that the house was silent that night I guess helped.  A few people came in late, crept in, turned off the light.  Yaay, I slept like the body laid out in the corner of the morgue.

Sunday night was also pretty quiet, and the guy who was working late at the downstairs work area was kind enough to turn off the light when he went to bed shortly after I did – about 10pm.

Around midnight, a couple guys came in the kitchen to cook.  Again, they weren’t noisy, and they weren’t speaking English – an Indian language by the sound of it.  They had no idea I was there.  During the proceedings, one of them needed to cuss.  I don’t know if it was about the conversation or the cooking, but this was in English.  However beautiful other languages are, I figure you just can’t beat that good old Anglo Saxon F-bomb to put an exclamation point in the conversation.

The incongruity of the casual ‘Oh ****’ in the middle of the conversation was a surprise that changed my whole attitude to the event – I don’t know how I managed to suppress audible laughter, but a pillow was involved.

They took their delicious smelling food upstairs to eat, and now I know how the dog feels when you cook and don’t give him any.

Children and art

Sometimes it is difficult to take kids to art fairs as they always want to touch.  I’m always happy to point out to parents that my work is pretty kid proof and if they poke at it, I won’t have to cut their hands off 🙂 which usually is a relief as it’s often too late at that point.

I follow the Red Dot blog of Jason Horejs of Xanadu Gallery in Scottsdale, Arizona.  He covers a lot of interesting topics (though sadly he doesn’t transmit on WordPress).  I was really interested in his blog of August 9th about kids looking at art in museums and galleries.

From what he says about children appreciating museum/gallery art, it seems like art fairs are a little more interesting for little ones – for a start there’s frequently something hung at their eye level in a booth, some of it (like the one below) would be ideal for a child’s room, and there aren’t quite such strict rules about running between displays.  Occasionally I will get a youngster who comes back to subsequent shows with enthusiasm – and I know that I can’t be the only artist who enjoys this phenomenon, so here and there, future collectors are being created.

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#1271 Night Watch.  Mixed media on panel (refractured watercolor, poetry, acrylic). 14×24″.