Monday, November 28, 2011

Forecast: Cloudy with a Chance of Deep Fog

Killing Time is a 6x6 oil on panel by Shirley Fachilla.

We make fun of weathermen and their predictions but I, for one, have a much worst batting average of foreseeing the future… at least the future of individual paintings. I’m almost never right about which painting will sell, which painting will be the most popular or which painting will be juried into a show. (See Artful Definitions if you’re unclear about the definition of juried show.)

A case in point is the above 6x6 panel. I thought if any of my 6x6’s had a chance of getting into the California Higbee 6 Squared Show it would be this one. I was wrong. Two others made it but not my nonchalant smoker. Heck, maybe it was her attitude.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Feeling So-o-o Square

Consider the Lilies is a 6x6 oil by Shirley Fachilla.

Small Boat on the Tyrrhenian Sea is a 6x6 oil by Shirley Fachilla.

I’m very happy to report that these two paintings were selected to be in Randy Higbee’s juried 6” Squared Show in Costa Mesa, California.
Why does that make me feel less than cool, you ask? Because to be in the show, the painting had to be square, a small square, 6x6 inches. I think there will be something like 400 6x6’s on his gallery walls.
The rules were that submissions had to be that exact size and representational, no abstracts allowed. But they could be any medium, oil, pastel, acrylic, graphite.
The reception is December 3 and begins at 5; the location is Randy Higbee Gallery, 102 Kalmus Drive, Costa Mesa, California. The show’s up until December 22. This Tennessean can’t be there; but if you’re in the vicinity, I hope you drop by. There should be some tiny gems to see.

I think my next post will be the 6x6 painting that I thought stood the best chance to be picked

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Ah, to Be the Center of Attention...

Queen Anne's Lace is a 24x12 oil by Shirley Fachilla.
The little lady in Queen Anne's Lace is an unlikely person to attract notice. There's nothing outstanding about her (except, of course, she seems to lack a nose, mouth and eyes); but none the less, she is the focal point, the spot that commands the most attention.
Painters compose work around focal points; they want to lead your eye there and keep you looking for awhile. Artist C.W. Mundy has several tips for creating a focus; and some of them are at work to make my little lady an attention-getter. But I'll just mention the one that works the best for her. It's her face.
We humans are social creatures who rely upon sight to identify friend and foe and upon faces to read the emotions of our fellows. If there’s a face in a painting, then that immediately becomes where we look the most intently even if that face has no discernible features!
I’m happy to say Queen Anne’s Lace was also accepted, along with my painting Island Music, into Scottsdale Artist School’s juried Best and Brightest Show happening January and February of 2012.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The Violinist on Mohegan Island

Detail from Island Music a 24x12 oil by Shirley Fachilla.

In August, my friends and I traveled from Tennessee to Maine and then to Mohegan Island.
Our arrival on the island was confused. We had traveled by boat for more than an hour to arrive at a very noisy, crowded dock. Possibly every vehicle allowed on the island was there, to pick up supplies or drop off things for the boat’s return trip.
We made our way from the dock and clambered up the steep road to the village, backpacks stuffed with our heavy supplies. On that road, we left the noise behind and found instead sweet music and a sweeping view. When I think of the island, I think of the violinist on her hillside with her notes flying across the waves.
Mohegan is a special place.

Jean McGuire’s Entry for the Best and Brightest Show

Time for a Break is a 20x16 oil done by Jean McGuire.

Above is an image of Jean McGuire’s painting destined for the Scottsdale Artists School exhibit. I remember when she did it in Open Studio.

And since my last post, I’ve learned that Abigail Gutting, artist daughter of my blogging artist friend Susan Gutting, will also have a painting in the show.

Monday, November 7, 2011

"The Best and Brightest"

Island Music is a 24x12 oil by Shirley Fachilla.

Scottsdale Artists School calls its exhibit The Best and Brightest. Of course, the name alone is enough to make a participant love it.
And I will be participating in 2012's Best and Brightest Exhibit along with my good friend and artist, Jean McGuire. Back in the early spring we both were students in the Carolyn Anderson Workshop given in Scottsdale. We loved the workshop and loved the school (we already knew we loved Carolyn Anderson).
So when we were invited to submit work for a juried school show, we were delighted. Now we’re even more delighted that our work has been accepted into the exhibit.
My accepted painting is shown above.
I’ll write a little more about Island Music in a day or so. She has a story to tell.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The cost per lb... per piece... per inch

Sweater Girl is a 12x12 open studio oil by Shirley Fachilla.

Most artists price their work by the inch. It does seem quite prosaic, sort of like selling carpet or produce.
The per-inch method is often justified by asserting that larger takes longer to paint and therefore should cost more. Trouble is unless the larger size is really bigger, like a wall-size mural, it usually doesn’t take that much longer.
At 12x12, Sweater Girl is four times the size of a tiny 6x6. But I often labor all day on such a tiny one and when faced with a deadline, finish a 20x24 in less than half of that. So it isn’t the time, it’s just that other pricing techniques make even less sense.
Ask any artist, often one’s best painting takes the least amount of time. And the piece the maker thinks a masterpiece might seem less than wonderful in the eye of another beholder.
To read a very funny essay on the subjective nature of art pricing, visit Canadian artist Robert Genn’s blog, A Rough Day on the Board. It’s so funny but so true lots of readers missed Robert’s tongue in cheek and thought it was fact not fiction.

Is it too early to send an invitation?

Pieces by (clockwise from left to right) : Susan Harlan, Janet Garner, Shirley Fachilla, Mike Martino and Topper Williams. So many ...