Wednesday, November 26, 2008

watercolors from Monhegan Island

I thought it would be nice to post some images from the Camp Kawanhee groups on the island this summer. Some of these pieces are very fun.

click the link below to see a short slide show I built with them

Sunday, November 23, 2008

drawing impressions

while teaching I get moments in which the students are working and I need something to do. Best to leave working students alone. Not enough time to really get into something, because invariably someone has a question or needs help. But, I learned to draw fast and enjoy scribbling quickly.

It's a moment in which I expect nothing. Results do not matter. The only thing that matters is the act of observing and making a mark. It feeds a primal, childish desire to simply draw, for the sake of drawing.

The above drawing was done (between questions) on Monhegan Island; children sitting on the rocks, drawing the beach, water, boats, and rocks.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

W.P.A. (1932 - 1943)

a program that (probably) helped kick the U.S. into center stage of the art world

Ranger Doug makes reproductions of the national park posters from the era.

a very brief visual overview of the variety of posters made for different programs

a general art program blurb from wikipedia

I can't imagine that so many American artists would have pushed to the 1950s avant guard wihtout the encouragement of the WPA

Friday, November 21, 2008

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Olive Ayhens

spent a year at American University, while one of the painting professors was on leave for a year.
AU has evolved into an odd mix of both conceptual/intellectual faculty and those who put physical mark-making first. I fell into the latter group and needed to find more people who were similar. Having not had a class with Tim Dowd, and with Don Kimes only spending spring semesters on campus, I needed a visual mentor. Olive Ayhens' drawing class fullfilled that need, and encouraged me to keep working at a time when others were trying to take me away from my work-first based center of creating art.

Look at her website. Her paintings are both dense and light, concerned and comical, whimsical and serious. They ask questions about people, human space, city scapes, nature, and how they all are butted up against each other in an ever shrinking world.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Monday, November 10, 2008


In various spiritual traditions, mandalas may be employed for focusing attention of aspirants and adepts; as a spiritual teaching tool; for establishing a sacred space; and as an aid to meditation and trance induction. According to David Fontana, its symbolic nature can help one "to access progressively deeper levels of the unconscious, ultimately assisting the meditator to experience a mystical sense of oneness with the ultimate unity from which the cosmos in all its manifold forms arises." [1] The psychoanalyst Carl Jung saw the mandala as "a representation of the unconscious self,"[2] and believed his paintings of mandalas enabled him to identify emotional disorders and work towards wholeness in personality.[3]

In common use, mandala has become a generic term for any plan, chart or geometric pattern that represents the cosmos metaphysically or symbolically, a microcosm of the Universe from the human perspective.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Friday, November 07, 2008


In psychology, sublimation is a coping mechanism. It has its roots in the Nietzschean & psychoanalytical approach, and is often also referred to as a type of defense mechanism.
Sublimation is the refocusing of psychic energy (which Sigmund Freud believed was limited) away from negative outlets, toward positive, or the rechannelling of drives which cannot find an outlet. For example, a student worrying over a major exam might rechannel that energy into studying, and a rageful person who is accustomed to lashing out might rechannel their passion through introspection and organization.

Or, in this case, one could refocus all the psychic energy that results from the desire to explore onto a piece of paper, canvas, stone and create some art. Perhaps more Jungian than Freudian.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Tuesday, November 04, 2008


A fugue begins with what is known as the exposition and is characteristically written according to certain predefined rules; in later portions the composer has somewhat more freedom, though a logical key structure is usually followed, and further "entries" of the subject will occur throughout the fugue, repeating the accompanying material at the same time. The various entries may or may not be separated by episode

Monday, November 03, 2008

Sunday, November 02, 2008