Friday, December 28, 2007

ART as art...

18 x 24" Oil on Canvas
I love to paint. I forget at times how much the simple act of putting paint to canvas eases my world worn spirit and makes life worth while again. I often get tied up in the "I must produce more work faster to sell today" mentality and I forget that I started this because I loved the act of painting.
When I step in front of the canvas and clear my mind and let my spirit guide my fingers, then I begin to feel back in my own body and life becomes joy filled again. I don't have to worry about whether it is good or marketable or world class painting, or not. I can trust my skills, trust my heart to take me where I need to go. Paint, unlike a lover or a family member or the person at the job, can't let me down. It can only free me to be me again.
Recently I was asked to do several commissions. The people I work with are all lovely and I love to be asked to create something special just for them. Often they will go through my portfolio and see a work they love that I have already sold and ask if I can recreate it. My answer is always that yes, I can recreate the feel and the colors used, but that no two paintings of mine are ever going to be just alike.
I don't mind copying from myself. If I have created a painting that touches someone other than the original buyer ( and please god let them be seen by many others) then I want to be able to make that same emotional response available to others. What I don't really plan to do often is to make a print or an exact copy. I love to recreate the feel of a place not a photographic replica of it, and those feeling change like the sunlight does minute to minute.
This week I have had the honor of painting again! It's good to be home!
Until next time
Create Beauty and fill the world with love!

Friday, December 21, 2007

New Horizons

My painting has always been about creating beauty and vibrant color. I am starting to develop now a line of silk clothing. Using the jewel tones and vibrant colors of nature that I love so much, along with my simple abstracted landscape styles on hand painted silk and satin, I am designing and creating hand made clothing for men and women. Clothing that celebrates culture, class, and elegance; while at the same time clothing that can go from the Board-room to the ball-room. My free-style clothing draws from many cultures and influences and is designed to allow the maximum freedom of movement while still celebrating and highlighting the form, beauty, and diversity of the human body!

I look forward to sharing the new designs and my work in silk, satin, linen and velvets int he coming month with you all. Happy Holidays!

Until Next time

Create beauty and fill the world with love!


Monday, December 17, 2007

The Art of Commissions

Cherries 9x24" Oil on paper

SOLD _ private commission

The creation of an original piece of fine artwork is a personal and interactive process. It is important for you to understand the process. Although there is a process, there are no hard and fast rules. The free flow of ideas, facts and feelings are essential to the completion of a commission. I am committed to your satisfaction.

Initial Contact Take some time to look at my Artwork through my website or a visit to my studio. Get an idea of my style. I paint primarily landscapes, still life, and abstracts. Each commission is unique. Any image you find attractive can be enlarged, lengthened, altered, and adapted to fit your specific space and needs. I choose my materials and techniques to ensure the greatest of permanency; when treated appropriately your art will outlast your grandchildren. Fine Art is a financial and personal investment. Quality and longevity are of great importance to me. I enjoy a challenge. If my style is one that you are interested in, contact me and we can discuss the details. I will also give you an idea of my current work schedule.

Consultation The nature of the initial consultation will depend upon you. To best help us both, I would like to see where the art will be placed, the lighting and decor in the room, and the flow of traffic through the room. Photos of work that interest you are also helpful. We will also use telephone and e-mail to keep in contact. I will be creating a piece of art that is unique and personal. I aim to make sure it is right for you, your family, or the persons to whom you are gifting it, to enjoy for a lifetime.

Agreement and Pricing I can create both large scale and smaller pieces to fit your needs. Price depends on many factors which include, size, materials, technique style, and matting and framing (Delivery/Shipping fees and installation charges are an additional charge). The evolution of the piece will affect the cost. The estimate is just that, an estimate. Depending on the complexity of the image and the materials and the number of labor hours required, the price is adjustable (not always higher). Upon your commitment to commission a work from me, I will require a contract with a down-payment equal to ½ the agreed estimated price for the finished work. This provides the materials for the commissioned work as well as a good faith commitment on both our parts to finish this project.

Sketches and Reviews Based upon our initial discussions, I will make several sketches. We’ll meet again and go over the proposed work. You’ll be given an opportunity to review the sketches and to make a final selection. Your input here is invaluable. After this selection, I will create the painting incorporating your ideas and suggestions. Please note that after this phase, there are limited opportunities for further change in the image composition or colors of the painting. (Note: unless agreed upon prior to beginning the work, all sketches remain the property of the artist and may be purchased separately.)

The Finished Work At that time I will proceed to complete and deliver the commissioned artwork as per our agreed time schedule. When the painting is complete I will notify you to view it. We can then arrange the final payment and the delivery of the work.

For additional information on Commissioning Artwork please contact me direct at: Or call my studio at 703.652.9626.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

The Joyous Season

The Autumn Series
Wall mountable 4x4" Stretched Canvas blocks
set of 5 $75.00
Fall has come and is almost gone and I hardly noticed it.
Growing up in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia I always loved the fall weather most. The brilliant scarlets and the shocking lime yellow of trees balanced the rust wheat and sienna of dead grasses and the naked trunks of trees. The crisp air wakes you up and you begin to notice that it's dark when you rise and dark when you get home. Dreams of logs in the fire and hot chocolate and quiet evenings return.
My friends all tease me because my own clock is tuned to the sun. I wake when it rises and I am ready to crawl into bed at dark. (Which is about 5:30 pm as the winter rolls through.) I could say its the result of maturity but I've been like this all my life.
But now its almost Christmas and I feel somehow I've missed the fall. Our weather has been strange and I've lost count of the days. I guess I'm going though one of those spells of introspection reminding me that life is a gift. I have so very much to be grateful for: Friends, Talents, a wonderful life partner, and the joy of creating. Painting for me is the ultimate gift back to the world around me. So for today I will stick my head outside and acknowledge the beauty of my little piece of the world and move ahead.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Elan Magazine

Here in Northern Virginia there is a wonder arts magazine known as Elan. It is a magazine aimed to the housing market and the the growing communities in NOVA of investers and collectors. The main focus of this glossy tabletop magazine is to introduce local artists and focus on thw quality of life in the arts that our community offers. Not only do they highlight visual artists - painters, sculptors, fiber workers and glass , but they also cover and introduce area musicians, dancers, conductors, actors writer. All mediums of the arts. I was very pleased to be covered in their December 2007 . You can click on the link here to read the article in PDF format on my website. Until next time Create beauty and fill the world with love Wynn

Monday, December 10, 2007

Art vs Craft... Skilled labor at its best.

Silk Scarf - 44" x 44" One of a kind Hand-painted 100% imported fine Silk, hand hemmed. Painted with traditional French Silk Techniques.
As an artist I work hard to keep exploring the world around me. I expand the ways I use my mediums of choice (oil, oil pastels, acrylic and lately Silk painting.) Though I have no formal training I assimilate well. I study art - both in museums and in back rooms - not to find what sells or what is/was popular, but to find what the artist seemed to really be trying to say? I love to philosophically question, why this color palette, why that kind of brush stroke?
In my own simple work I am searching to create ( primarily) colorful landscapes of my soul. (That lost black hole.) I explore my relationship to the IDEAL of nature rather than trying to recreate with photo detailed realism my surroundings and memories. My work has been called emotional, "conveying an underlying optimism using subtle shading and layers of contrasting and complementary hues".( Trudi Van Dyke - Elan Magazine December 2007)
I have fallen into the trap occasionally of trying to paint what might sell so that I can live. Every time I end up deeper in despair because in order to paint I have to listing to my heart and not my mind.
Lately I have again been struggling with the Art/ Vs craft dilemma. My work is going in directions that seem to make it more feasible to sell it at art and craft fairs where "hand-made" means something. I just don't have the financial backing to stage one or two fine art shows a year in a gallery and not have my work out there the rest of the time for the public to see. The quality of my work is the same, the presentation is similar. It does seem that in many ways the only real separation of art and craft is determined by one thin question. "Is it usable or is it superfluous decoration?" If only very rich people can afford to hang in on the wall does that make it art? If it can be used in everyday life (a scarf, an holiday ornament, etc) does that instantly make it craft?
There are a number of museums and galleries that are now recognizing that the quality of work and the skill of creativity and design that goes into many pieces formally labeled Craft are no different at all than their "Fine Art" counterparts.
I guess all I can really do a the moment is to let others decide the matter and get back to work on my own art.
Until next time
Create beauty and fill the world with love!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

An artist's work is never done... thank god!

While it may seem to many that the reason artists like to stay self employed is to lay in bed and eat bonbon til noon and play through life.... I'm here to tell you it is so much harder than any 9 to 5 or even 8 to 8 job in the "real" world could ever be.

Right now I am working on several different projects. I have 4 private commissions currently on the easel. I am working everyday to also create enough product for the weekend art fairs and craft shows I do. Besides my usual landscapes and the cards and small collectible pieces I produce right now in oil and pastel, I am also developing my technique as a silk painter (and the rewards and response has been great in that market this fall for me) But I need months to complete the learning curve and to produce the quality work I desire in this other medium. I just don't have enough hours in the day right now!

I am working fiendishly to keep up with applications for solo and group shows nationally, as well as juggling craft shows that will provide me with the necessary exposure and income.

I love it all! I'm surprisingly good at it all. but at times I want to sit and cry from being tired. I'm often exhausted because of trying to fit in painting, dying, stretching, mailing. writing and selling with household chores, teaching, a relationship. On top of that sometimes I feel I've spent a year plus working on something because someone said " This is good!" This is the direction you should be going!" "This is edgy and modern do it!"only to find that there is not really a market for me. I know building an art career can take years. I don't have years. I don't have as my mom would say "a pot to piss in". I only have talent! I'm half way through my life now. I've never in my life had a vacation of any kind. I can't afford to take a day off from work. AND STILL... I am the luckiest person in the world. I get to do the thing I love more than anything in the world - Create beautiful things that people love and wish to own and share.

Today I am finishing holiday gift boxes, updating my resume, building new stretchers for silk, painting 20 pieces of silk for a retail store, cooking lunch for my BF and working on 4 new sketches for a commissioned painting. January I'll sleep... Maybe!

Until next time

Create Beauty and fill the world with love!


Saturday, December 8, 2007

Tis the Season!

I wish a very Happy Holiday to all my friends and patrons, old and new. It’s December and the weather is not co-operating with me as far as comfy outdoor sales, but still life and art goes on. You can find me for purchases at the Alexandria Farmer’s Market Saturday mornings until Christmas, and Sundays at Eastern Market in Washington, DC. My paintings are featured currently at the EWI A Woman’s Story Gallery and also at Madeleine’s Doggy Boutique both on King Street in Old Town Alexandria. I currently have a Solo show with works available at the Durant Center 1605 Cameron Street until January 2 2008. There is ALSO a solo show at The Massey Cancer Center of the Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center in Richmond Virginia until January 5 2008. Please contact me if you’d like information on either of those shows. If you are looking for the perfect last minute stocking stuffer or gift idea, I can help. I have available 4x4x1” free standing or wall mountable holiday ornament blocks (see attachment) these are lightweight canvas blocks perfect for hanging on the tree or to give as collectible gifts. Each year I paint a new one of a kind design for the season. Collect them all. They are priced at $15.00 each or, if you buy three or more, they are $10.00 each. I have a hand painted Christmas Cards still available. They come in packs of 4 cards for $25.00. Each painting is had crafted on matte board and mounted on archival paper. They make great gift cards or can be framed in a 5x7” frame for years of enjoyment. Like the blocks there is a different design for each year’s holiday card. Get your 2007 before they are gone. I also have sensuous hand painted silk scarves available in a variety of sizes. They are painted in the style of my abstracted landscapes using intense rich colors with traditional French Silk dye/resist and set techniques. Scarves can be crafted to order if there are specific colors your loved one likes. The Scarves come in several sizes. 8 x 54” Neck Scarves, 22x90” Stoles, The full size “Pashima” like 35 x 84” Veils, 44” Square neck and head scarves, and even little silk chiffon Kimono style jackets for casual and evening wear. Please feel free to check my web site for style and colors and write me or call for orders. This month there was a wonderful personality profile written by Trudi Van Dyke about my life and work in the √Član Artist Magazine of Northern Virginia. Featuring 4 pages of my paintings, I was very grateful for the coverage and the in-depth writing, also for √Član’s mission to introduce emerging and established artists in the Metro DC area to the public. As always my studio in Old Town is available for you to visit and select your gifts, or just have a cup of coffee and share the time with me! Happy holidays to you all! Until next time, Create Beauty and fill the world with love. Wynn