Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Appreciating Contrasts

Every year we plant an amaryllis bulb to bloom as close as possible to Christmas. This year I chose a light pink variety and love its delicate colors. It's already in full bloom and is a wonderful tonic for cold December mornings.

It's one of the strategies I use to give my spirits a boost at this grey time of year. There are others!

I throw new ingredients into the creative stew of my imagination by reading more articles about art and artists. One juicy tidbit from an article in the Jan/Feb 09issue of The Artist's Magazine,is about Tanja Softic. Tanja, a native of Sarajevo,combines printmaking and drawing in her work. She teaches at the University of Richmond, where she advises her beginning students not to focus on creating an exact replica of a subject:

"If you do that, you stay on the surface and miss an opportunity to encounter a whole world of interpretive possibilities. Focus instead of understanding that object: its shape, volume, color and relation to its environment. Establish a relationship with it; then think about it as an image. Your rendering will have depth and feeling; it will have individuality and will carry the imprint of your visual sensibility. You'll have more than the subject: You'll begin to develop content."

Migrant Universe:The Map of What Happened, Tanja Softic (acrylic, chalk, graphite and pigment on kozo paper, 42" x 108" )

Winter winds may blow and snow may pile up in the dark northeast, but toasty fires fueled by artistic ideas will carry us through.

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