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Friday, July 25, 2014

A Little Book I've Read....

Sometimes, I just stumble onto a little find!  This one was unexpected! (Perhaps, I'm the only one who hadn't heard of this little book or its author!??) 
I was visiting my son in Pasadena, and while waiting on him at the end of the day, I dropped into a well established book store and wandered around.  As I was wandering, the title caught my attention.  The more I looked it over, the more I was intrigued. 
Well, one page led to another, and I finally realized that I needed to add it to my library! 

Steal Like an Artist, Austin Kleon
©2012 - Workman Publishing Co.,  NY

A somewhat provocative title, don't you think?
 The first chapter honestly deals with the question of ideas.  Where do they come from ? What is inspiration? How do the evolve? How do they intersect?  How do we surround ourselves with viable ideas? 

Kleon give some very practical ideas for how to collect ideas and how to assimilate them.

The presentation is very visual - kinda like you were sitting with him in his studio - watching him doodle his ideas while he talks. 

A quote I really liked from this chapter is found on pg. 13
"The artist is a collector.  Not a hoarder, mind you, there's a difference: Hoarders collect indiscriminately, artists collect selectively".....  He goes on to say, "There's an economic theory out there that if you take the incomes of your 5 closest friends and average them, the resulting number will be pretty close to your own income.   I think the same thing is true of our idea incomes.  You're only going to be as good as the stuff you surround yourself with."  

I'll post more on this in the next few weeks.... I like his ideas.  I think he's right!  Artists (all of us) are inspired, intrigued, motivated, and activated by new ideas.  And as they settle in, they morph and evolve and become something entirely  new again ... something perhaps influenced by others, but yet all our own!  

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Steep Ascent

Steep Ascent, 6x6" Oil on canvas
©2014, Helen Read 



This little landscape came from a street view of a roadway along the coast of Mykonos - one of the Greek Isles.   It first struck me visually, that it was like a roadway ascending into the sky.  Rugged, steep, yet quite beautiful in it starkness.  It needs a home now and is ready to send! 
(This painting has been submitted to the Virtual Paintout blog to appear with their July submissions). 

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Final Version is off the easel!

Structure I,  10.5 x 16.5" Acrylic on paper 
©2014 Helen Read 
After almost a month of many interruptions, this painting is finally complete.  It is an interpretation of a microscopic cross section of a plant.  I am always intrigued by what we can't really see when we look at something, but yet the mystery that lies within. 
This is what captivated my imagination with this painting... the beautiful structure, organized but also a little bit random. Amazing what lies below the surface... what we unknowingly pass by.  This, to me, is part of the beauty of creation, and it whispers something about the beauty of the Creator.  

Friday, July 11, 2014

This newest abstract is almost done!

My work has been rather small and somewhat tedious, but it is almost finished.   It's also been a month of many interruptions... Projects, family interactions, and a myriad of general responsibilities.  It seems the summer is just evaporating!  I hope to post the finished version very soon!! 
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