Hello, and Happy New Year. I know, it’s been a while since I posted. I thought I’d catch up a little while on break but I’ve been quite busy with life in general. I did manage a little time in the studio this week. Not enough, but better than none.
The main reason for this post is the big news. I have been chosen as the local artist in residence for June 2023 at Stove Works, the internationally recognized artist residency in Chattanooga. I am excited about this opportunity and look forward to it with great anticipation.
More layers added. More layers needed. Here are some more work in progress images.
Showing work in progress makes usually makes me feel vulnerable. I’d like to reflect on this more and perhaps write about it more at a later date. Regardless, I need to feel more comfortable opening up in this manner. Which is why I am making a conscious effort to show things in an incomplete state.
I’m trying to be more comfortable showing work in progress. Here are details of the new series I have been working on. They are far from finished. Still processing the process and experimenting with mixed media materials. I’m not sure how I feel about them yet. That’s how it always is with the creative process. All part of the pugilistic battle between an artist and their work.
First order of business is to move out of my storage unit and move into the new studio space. While I do this, I’m also meticulously going through everything. I have years of things to go through and selectively purge. Time to take inventory. Time to get rid of the broken and unusable. Time to organize my materials. Time to get a few more things to make this studio even more functional. Then it’s time to create!
I bought the house two doors down to keep as an investment property AND to use as my art studio!!! Throughout my professional life, I’ve managed to offset my mediocre income with wise real estate decisions. This was only possible because of the money I made from the sale of my loft in Atlanta. Thank you Atlanta Beltline! Hopefully this house is just the latest wise real estate decision. It should be, it really should. This might be the single greatest gift I have ever given myself. It’s not a gift, but I like to think of it as one because I am grateful.
Here’s how it went down. I needed a new workspace. Our new house is fantastic. I love it. However, there is zero space for an art studio. When searching for a home in Chattanooga, finding a house with enough space for an art studio was part of our plan. What we ended up doing was buy a house without space for an art studio but on a lot big enough to build one. Therefore, we planned to build something that would be part art studio and part shed to store our outdoor belongings.
I started sketching what I envisioned the structure to look like and reached out to a series of local contractors. I was having trouble getting interest because my job was too small for most building contractors. While in the middle of this process, I noticed a “For Sale” sign in the yard of the house two doors down from ours. I told Kelli about it, saying almost half-jokingly, that I should buy it. Buy that house instead building something on our property. She said it sounded like a great idea, and I should at least look into it. Look into it I did.
The price was right. I decided to make an offer! The house had been used as rental property for a number of years. It needed some fixing up if it was going to used as a primary residence. However, because it was going to be used as my art studio, it was basically ready to go as is. I’m oversimplifying the process, of course. Bottom line, I bought it. The house is now mine.
I’ve never had more than a spare bedroom for a studio. Now I have an entire two bedroom house for my art studio! I’m so psyched about that. Not only that, this place has a million dollar view and a ton of investment potential. You can see downtown Chattanooga from my front porch.
Add this to the list of major changes in 2021. Geez.
I’m thrilled. I have no regrets. Maybe I’ll rent out some of the space to share with another artist. I’m in no hurry to make a decision about that, and that feels good in itself. I love the fact that I can walk two doors down and be at work in my space. This is now and it’s also the future. As I mentioned earlier, this might be the single greatest gift I have ever given myself.
I’m sure I’ll post more about this at a later date. Meanwhile, here are a few pictures of my new art studio, and the view!
Moving past, moving forward, moving beyond. Changes have a way of happening whether you want or need to them to or not. Big change, that’s the music I’ve been facing for a while.
I’ve been hunkered down in the studio for the last couple of months making a new series of art for a big solo exhibition in October. That also means I’ve been listening to music day and night. Listening and feeling music has always been a major part of my creative inspiration. Therefore I thought I’d share a few of my go to songs when working in the studio. I never grow tired of these songs and always want to listen to when making art. Keep in mind, this list is off the top of my head and represent only a sample of those go to songs.
I’m as focused as I can be. Other than seeing clouds as thought bubbles, my imagination is focused on this new body of work. I’m hunkered down, but I’ve still got a million fragments that I’m furiously weaving together into a cohesive visual experience (or something like that). I’ll be hunkered down continuously until October.
I’ve got some things to say, so I keep on fighting!
Tonight is the last night of working in the studio for this exhibition. Tomorrow I load up the panel van and drive everything to the gallery. Once again, I survived the multitude of battles that take place in the studio of the artist. I plan to write more thoughts on that subject at a later date. For now, it’s showtime. Finally.
The Edge Of Convergence February 5 – February 26, 2015
Hammond Hall Art Gallery
Jacksonville State University