This is Ruth Millar and her painting of Lucky, a chihuahua/Jack Russell cross. What an apt name for this happy dog.
I have become quite fond of this little chap while painting his portrait. Not quite complete but nearly there. His Owner won my competition. The portrait is the prize. More details to follow on Monday.
Automation is driving me crazy so I left the silly pattern in. It felt as if it downloaded itself. My computer wants to be like the self-driving car. The antithesis to what my work is all about!
I have been seeking to find words to express my mission. Why am I doing this painting thingy? It's not so that a computer may take over and duplicate my image! Hence a story.
Yesterday I saw the distress online of a local artist who had her work taken from internet images and printed by someone who allegedly couldn't afford the original. WTF?
Why Why Why would you be willing to pay for an expensive frame - framing does not come cheap - it's a craft - why would you pay to frame a substandard print?
I visited the Ulster Women Artists exhibition in the Crescent recently. My visit was greatly enriched by another artist. We viewed a number of the works together. One of them - a painting by Judith Logan- revealed exquisite details of colour, texture and pattern as we stood silently enjoying its delights. None of this would be available in the same richness and juiciness with a print. Even a really really good print.
An original work is unique. An original work will reward intense scrutiny. If we PAY attention (energy is valuable and money is merely trapped energy), we are rewarded by rich experiences. An original work, given attention, will yield deep and unexpected rewards. If the attention can be shared the rewards can be multiplied. A computer image, a print, an inferior duplicate, will not, cannot offer itself to you in the way an original artwork may softly, silently and amazingly open itself up to your gaze, your attention, your time, your awareness.
I feel as if I could get on my high horse here. Wakey wakey peeps. The material matters. My material is embodied in my painting via the attention and energy I invested within it. My emotional contagion is within ready to pounce on a willing recipient. I choose which emotions to spread carefully. I pay the making my full and complete attention. The rewards are available to those able to open to the raw materials that I have carefully crafted to carry them. With love and joy and wonder. Those who post pain and anger know this. It's very contagious.
I have always loved paintings. Even when I was quite young my incessant whining would enable me to be deposited at the art gallery while the rest of the family visited ships and castles and places. I chose to discover the magic that paintings could reveal. I stil do. Paintings are silent and immobile yet may open your imagination so wide and deep that it cracks you open. But you have to pay attention.
And a cheap reproduction just doesn't cut it!
Come and see my work at Midtown Makers in Ballymena. I might be there too.
This little character is a Yorkshire Terrier. I was challenged because I was working from someone else's photographs with very limited information. I love using natural light and I like to have access to detail. But this little one did make me smile and perhaps that is the most important part of creating a painting? I do hope the picture makes its new owner smile.
I found Mitzi's smile here and then I was good to go.
Midtown Makers in film! Melanie, Alana and Shelley have starring roles alongside my paintings. Wow! I tried to post the link but the site won't have it. So here are images of my latest commission. Three funny characters who make up their own version of a little happy family. They are each such individuals that I found it hard to get them to feel united and just kept it simple. The film is not released for another week but you will find it on my Facebook Cerisart. Rosie (below) is keeping an eye out that you do.....
Ceri McKervill PhD
Artist, researcher, art therapist, pragmatist: intent on making life changes with the help of art materials.