For most of my life my artwork was very realistic. I devoted most of my time to rendering figures, portraits and flowers representationally. I became frustrated and stuck and wanted to go beyond realism. I entered into a period of searching and experimentation.
I had always been drawn to abstraction so I began to experiment. I cut images apart, looked at things differently, drew from intuition, began to use color more expressively and tried new materials. I took small steps and grew more excited as I began to develop my own process of abstraction. Early works were mostly charcoal and pastel. I combined various underpaintings to create an abstract composition for my pastels. Pastel soon translated to mixed media acrylic paintings. Now I am in the process of teaching others and am excited that so many also want to go on the same journey.
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My current theme is titled Return to the Garden. I am revisiting themes of my past which include plants, flowers and figures. I have returned to drawing from life and am combining these drawings with my abstractions for a new vision. My new paintings and pastels are based on drawings created in gardens. Plants and flowers are drawn from life. This is truly a meditative experience for me and allows me to center myself. I take these drawings back to my studio and they are used as the foundation for subsequent works. I follow their lines, remember the day and recreate garden impressions in my abstractions. In many ways I am creating an inner garden for myself. The garden is symbolic of emergence, growth, change and the fleeting beauty of life.
Pastels en Perigord
Event Dates: 7/1/2016 – 8/1/2016
St. Aulaye, France
I have been invited to exhibit three of my pastels paintings in the upcoming Pastels en Perigord which will be held in St. Aulaye, France during July and August of 2016.
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Everything I do is just an excuse to play with line and color. It doesn’t matter whether it is non-objective, bouquets, figures, animals or most recently these abstracted landscapes. Making lines with charcoal is probably the most fun I have in my art. I love the act of taking a stick of charcoal and creating lines on paper. I love the tactile feel and even the sound of charcoal on paper. Some lines may have some reference to something I have seen and others are lines I feel need to be there. Some are also internal surges of energy (too much coffee).
Color is always an experiment and challenge. More subtlty is what I am after now. More variation in hue and value. These abstracted memory scapes are an excuse to play with variations in blues and greens. Those colors do lend themselves to landscapes. I’m not a landscape artist but I am inspired by all that I see and experience. I am surrounded by fields, water, sky, trees and earth. I can allow this daily experience to influemce my line and color choices. Last year I was inspired by the rocky coast of Maine and did a few abstractions based on that experience. The Arizona desert has inspired more subtle color choices. I want to let nature inspire me and influence me. I don’t want to render anything I see in a realistic way. I allow it to enter into me, mix with my own emotions and experience and come out onto the paper or canvas.
I would like to give special thanks to Debora Stewart for allowing me to feature her art work on KIRSTEINFINEART.
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