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  • Writer's pictureJen

Art stuff I've enjoyed this summer

How's your summer been? Mine started strong in June with a couple of lovely getaway adventures. July was overtaken by chores and appointments alternating with lazy afternoons. I honestly don't know where August went - I vaguely remember chauffeuring kids quite a lot, and some of it was spent recovering from COVID. Now that it's September, I have that feeling of new beginnings that all of us parents of school-aged kids enjoy when the house becomes quiet again and stays tidy for more than 5 minutes. I've spent the day in the studio taking care of a few administrative tasks, looking at the sixteen newly started paintings surrounding me, and wondering how to find a re-entry point to the work confidently. Transitioning back into studio days is always challenging for me. Doubt creeps in, and my mind scatters, looking for anything to focus on besides the creative work I need to do. Hence, it is a perfect time to write a blog post!

Here are a few things I enjoyed this summer that I thought you might like. Maybe you are also procrastinating today and would like to check them out!

This blog post by Jenny Nelson about abstracting through observation.

This YouTube video by Jane Davies about improvisational drawing.

This book by Ian Hodgeson about natural-style planting called New Wild Garden.

This Art2Life podcast episode where Nicholas Wilton discusses how to know when a painting is finished.

This is a painting I finished on August 1st called "Wading Through It." It was a one-off day in the studio, so I decided to dive into a piece I had started on Yupo at the beginning of June. I had lost all hope for the painting, to be honest, which seems to be an excellent mindset for me to have when going into a painting session. All bets are off, and it's energizing in a way where I am more willing to try things that might destroy the painting. I'm happy with how it turned out and have decided to keep this painting in mind when I finally get around to diving back into the others. I'll remember that feeling of possibility that goes alongside uncertainty and will seek out the joy of letting what Jenny Nelson calls, "life force energy" lead the way.

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