Of a Maine Artist
ARTISTIC VISION –
Quaker Roots and Parenting in Downeast Maine form guiding rhythms in my art and business.While I work in diverse mediums and styles, my vision is focused. Grown from Quaker thought and practices and conveying a deep reverence for nature my paintings pose Queries questioning human convention. Intertwined as well, is the work and way of life I internalized while living in Japan. I take the individual to the universal, returning to the particular as Haiku attempts to do. I work for the 3 levels of engagement; classical Chinese and Japanese artists pursued- first to elicit the response, “Oh, how nice” from the viewer. The next level achieves the reaction, “I want to visit”. Finally, if an artist is truly successful the viewer wants to stay. This goal of beauty melds with my need to paint what can be — not the ignoble in our world.
This vision came while parenting, watching children (and nature which I see as synonymous as their health and growth are at adult mercy. ) I follow children’s questioning exploring, thrilled by their capacity to wonder. I choose to depict their lives as a reminder and a celebration of human capacity to discover and what it is in each of us which turns that discovery to be used for good. I raise my children here in Maine grateful that they, too, can experience the humbleness of humanity in the awesomeness of this world.
First and foremost my paintings are about people, nature and relationships. Therefore, I believe it is very important that people have access to original art- to a distinct, unique story. I do everything possible to keep my prices down. Recycling and reusing help. I work in different mediums which have wide ranges of costs. Some work takes hours and hours, some are quicker, spontaneous less worked. I price by material cost plus time. A benefit of not relying on reproductions to boost inventory is I must paint constantly. This hones skills and vision. Another goal is to root my art and business in my community as well as provide the space, materials and knowledge for those wishing to explore the visual arts to do so.
A MORE IN DEPTH EXPLANATION OF STYLE, TECHNIQUE AND MEDIUM CHOICE
While versed in conventional painting techniques- both West and East- I choose to transcend and manipulate these into whatever form is needed to communicate the story I am witnessing. The liquidness of Western Watercolor – its fluid movement of the pigments on paper surfaces so captures rain drenched skies, light emanating from skin or air filled woods. The layered brilliant colors of pastel create surfaces one on top of the other like a sculpture of the depths of a storm stirred wave. Asian Ink Painting’s spontaneous brush movement captures a moment since this medium allows for no going back to re work. Compositionally, as well, there are differences in each medium. Western Works tend to have a focal point placed in one of the 4 sweet spots of the picture plane. The effect is often used to have the viewer outside looking in. This is enhanced by matting and heavier framing. Asian paintings tend not to have a focal point, desiring the viewer to enter the world of the picture.
PRICING, POLICY and PRACTICE
During these unsettling times, I am exploring how to keep art accessible as I hope it provides a spiritual care, a sense of hope and a promise of what is good. Because I do not value myself, nor my work, by the price assigned it, I continuously reassess how to sell my work in order to meet my family’s financial needs yet keep original art accessible to folks of all economic means. I am able to do this because my family has agreed to keep our wants to a minimum and I paint continuously maintaining a large inventory. The greater the inventory, the less I need charge per painting. In order to meet varying needs, I offer 3 other payment options:
1. Rent To Own
The monthly payment is %5 of the cost. If one wishes to keep the picture, monies paid go towards purchasing it. If one does not want to keep the picture then s/he must get it back to me safely at his/her cost.
2. Installment Pay
After agreeing on a down payment and monthly amount, the painting goes to its new home. I just ask it be paid off in a year.
3. Frame/ Unframed
I keep my framing costs down by having Mike, a local Winter Harborian, make frames out of lobster wood and scrap lumber. (See below for more information) This does, however minimally add to the purchase price. Due to this and because I am not a professional framer all pictures can be purchased unframed.
REMEMBER TO CHECK PICTURE WIRES EACH YEAR!