Your Art Doesn’t Have to Match Your Couch

But it’s OK if it does.

I know a lot of artists who will roll their eyes or cringe when they hear someone say they are looking for a painting to match their couch. “Art should be bought because you love it”, they’ll say. “Because it speaks to you”. And wouldn’t it be nice if we all had the money to buy the art first and decorate our rooms around it.

But most people already have flooring and maybe have picked a wall color and bought a sofa and tables and lamps and now, maybe have some money to buy art. It’s probably the last thing and they want it to fit in with every thing else. That’s OK.

Then again it doesn’t have to MATCH. You know that technical term the designers use…you don’t want too much “matchy-matchy”.

My walls are forever changing—art goes up when I paint new ones; art comes down when it goes to a show; back up when the show is over; down when I sell it. Anyway…this piece is up on the wall. It is mostly blue. So are the 2 small ones. I have no blue in my living room. I do have brown, which is a darker version of orange. Orange is the complement of blue (opposite on the color wheel) so they go together. Nice! And there is a little orange near the horizon where the sun has set.

photo of art in my living room
Art in my living room.

See that. It’s all good.

Next time more tips on art on the walls. Until then I want to know…what’s on your walls?

When Artists Socialize

acrylic painting River Twilight
River Twilight

Making art usually takes place in solitude, not always, but usually. So many artists like to have a social outlet to keep them sane and the company of other artists allows them to discuss some of the challenges they encounter.

Every Saturday morning I get together with a group of artists for breakfast at a local diner. We catch up on the week’s activities and discuss the “Art question of the week.” Non-artists are welcome, spouses and friends as well.

An older gentleman has become a regular. I believe he has done some sketching. He is Swiss, looks like Santa with a shock of white hair, bushy white eyebrows, and white beard. I don’t always understand him. He is soft spoken, chuckling while he speaks, and telling jokes I don’t get.

I was showing around some paintings I had done the past week that I have photos of on my iPhone. This gentleman didn’t know how to swipe through the photos and kept bringing up the calculator somehow. He liked the last one I had done and asked what size it was and how much I charged. It was an 8×10″ and I told him it was $100. He said a 16×20″ would be twice as much cuz it’s twice as big as he chuckled. We said, no, that was 4 times as big, and I told him what I have charged for 16x20s. He held out the phone and said 16×20. I said that was an 8×10. He said 16×20. I said 8×10. He laughed and said 16×20. I asked the man next to me, “Does he want me to paint him a 16×20?”

He then asked if I was going to enlarge it with a machine? I asked him if he wanted a print and he looked at me and laughed. “You want me to paint you a 16×20? “Oh that will be lively,” he said. (Not lovely, lively). He took out his wallet and handed me two large bills and said he’d pay me the rest the next time he saw me. “Don’t worry, take your time” he chuckled.

So I’m painting a 16×20″ painting of the 8×10. And I’m chuckling.

The Tidily Bits—You Know—the Whole Earth

8x10 acrylic painting of sunset on the river
“Sunset on the River”

I love skies. I find them easy to paint for the most part. And I love water. I enjoy painting water as well and usually I’m happy with the way it turns out. It’s all the “tidily bits” (as Dr. Who would say) in between I have trouble with… you know…the rest of the earth. Trees in particular give me grief. I’ve been in regions where there is a lack of trees, desert areas, new subdivisions, and I definitely prefer trees.

Without leaves they are very spikey and linear as opposed to the rest of my painting, which is more massive shapes. With leaves they can be frilly if I look too closely. They can be very GREEN for much of the year. I like the palm trees of the warmer states, with their huge fronds, tall thin trunks, and separateness.

So I here I put them in and take them out and try again and scape them out and just keep painting. Finally I am happy. “Sunset on the River” 8×10″ acrylic on gessobord panel, unframed, available for  $100 via http://www.dailypaintworks.com/fineart/andrea-jeris/sunset-on-the-river/397447

Does This Remind You of Anything?

Acrylic painting of pink peonies
Pink Peonies

Every Spring I have so much anticipation when my peonies start coming up, and this year they were so big! There were so many buds! It was going to be a bumper crop. When I first moved into this house these plants were on the side of the house. I immediately moved them to the back of the deck so I could see them every day. Some are pink and some are white with a blush of yellow-pink.

Then they burst into bloom and they are gorgeous! And the fragrance is more wonderful than any perfume you can buy. I took lots of photos (which means lots of paintings).

Then a heavy rainfall overnight and alas, they lie limp and wet, too heavy with rain to get up again.

This painting, 8×10″ acrylic on Gessobord panel, is available for $95. http://www.dailypaintworks.com/fineart/andrea-jeris/pink-peonies/392069

photo of peonies buds
Anticipation
photo of peonies
Burst into Bloom
photo of flattened flowers
After the Rain

Doesn’t this remind you of something? I’m just saying.

Workin’ It

Painting every day has great benefits. It improves my painting for one. It’s a great habit and feels good like any regular exercise, and I miss it if I miss a day. Completing a daily painting gives a sense of accomplishment too, which feels good—if it doesn’t get washed down the drain. Not every painting is a keeper after all.

Sometimes the daily paintings make it hard to find time to work on larger paintings, which all of a sudden seem like an enormous task. But so it goes and I have started an 18×24″ for an upcoming show. Shows are great for goal setting.

Some artists start with the darks. Some work back to front. Some paint alla prima (wet-on-wet). Others paint in layers waiting for each layer to dry. I’ve learned all of this and tried all of this and I don’t think about any of it any more.

I get in a zone where I don’t think, I just do. I’m sure all those things I learned come through when I need them (or not). I just keep painting ’til I’m happy with it.

Here’s what I’m working on. I love the way glass and light react and dance with each other. So I’m looking at these bottles with sunlight reflecting and passing through and how it happens. Here we go…

art studio
my studio

Here’s the drawing and transfer to the canvas.

starting acrylic painting of bottles
beginning the painting

I decided to paint the first 2 bottles in their complementary colors. They will eventually be green.

To be continued…