March 23, 2017

461 El Guapo for Short

Guapo461 El Guapo for Short
6x6 inches :: original oil painting on gessobord
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This is my demo painting from a private oil painting session I taught in the studio. The subject is a friend of the person who was painting with me. A handsome Latino hunk. El Guapo for short.


March 22, 2017

460 Anja

Anja460 Anja
6x8 inches :: original oil painting on gessobord
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I referenced a photo by @narcissusholmes of @anjaphillips for this work. Practicing the task of bringing in color with a b&w reference and my efforts with the whole "there, not there" thing.

459 This Land

Beauty459 This Land
18x24 inches :: original acrylic painting on stretched canvas
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This is one of the demo paintings I started yesterday while teaching a private lesson. I finished it today. The photo I referenced is one that a person named Chris had shared with me when I was teaching her a private session. She had found it on Pinterest. It was one of those references we both admired and has been in my queue to paint for a while. So glad I did.

March 21, 2017

458 Stay.

Stay458 Stay.
18x24 inches :: original acrylic painting with pencil on stretched canvas
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This is one of the two demo paintings I made while teaching a private lesson in the studio today.

STAY (Jenny Doh)
Stay, she said.

Don't go.
Everybody goes.
Why don't you not go?

March 12, 2017

457 Backseat Driver

Backseat negotiations457 Backseat Driver
6x6 inches :: oil on gessobord
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I referenced a black-and-white photo by @yoursbaby.la for this work. Always a challenge to add color when the reference is black-and-white.

March 09, 2017

456 I Volunteer as Tribute

Little prince456 I Volunteer as Tribute
18x24 inches :: original acrylic painting on stretched canvas
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This is the demo painting I made while teaching a private session today. I referenced a fantastic photo of Cate Blanchett as The Little Prince, which appeared in an issue of W magazine. The reference didn't have her with a bow and arrow but I decided to add those elements as today's painters and I decided to add different interpretations into the work. And the big round element in the background was a planet in the original reference which I decided to turn it into a target.

March 08, 2017

I Bow Deeply

SusanbSusan B. Anthony walked this earth from 1820 to 1906. With Elizabeth Cady Stanton and other allies, she dedicated her life to living as an activist for women's rights. This life culminated with an amendment to the Congress that they presented, to give women the right to vote. It was after her death in 1920 that the vote was passed and the US Constitution was amended for the 19th time, allowing women to vote.

ALLOWING. What a concept.

It reminds me of the point made by Catharine MacKinnon that when we women sing the song of inclusion, it is within the fugue of "we are the same." And that song, though important, is embedded within a structure that remains structurally oppressive and patriarchal and keeps our existence in correspondence to the male standard. The male body is the human body. The female body is the extra credit course found in ob/gyn.

Undoubtedly Susan B. Anthony had to field assorted insults and harassment that remain evergreen: "Why are you such an angry woman?" "Why don't you smile?" "Be happy." "Happy girls are the prettiest girls." "Why can't you just get over it?" "You asked for it, didn't you?" "Why can't you be grateful for what you have?"

On this International Women's Day, I bow deeply to all women past, present, and future who resist all facets of misogyny, even in the face of insults and terror from the universe as we fight for inclusion and protection within a flawed structure ... while imagining a someday when the standard of the structure is no longer male.

#internationalwomensday #adaywithoutwomen #resist #susanbanthony

March 07, 2017

455 Beautiful to Strangers


455 Beautiful to Strangers
6x8 inches
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This is the demo painting i made while teaching a private oil painting session in the studio. Most people ask me for homework before they leave. My answer is usually this: Paint soon and often. Like tomorrow. Paint tomorrow. And the day after tomorrow. And the day after that.

#resistancelog (Word Choice Edition)

Word choice

As I continue to embrace my outrage against the misogyny of this administration and the world, I am reminded of the importance of being mindful with words. My word choices. My desire to avoid using words that create hierarchy among women.

Case in point. Recently, there was a photo of Kellyanne Conway kneeling on the couch in the oval office while looking at her phone that went viral. Congressman Cedric Richmond joked about the photo saying that she "really looked familiar in that position." In response to the misogyny reflected in Richmond's comment, Chelsea Clinton called him out on it and defended Conway by saying: "Despicable. I hope @kellyannepolls receives the apology she deserves ..." To which Conway responded to Clinton by saying: "Thank you @chelseaclinton. As strong women ... appreciate you speaking out on this ..."

And it's the word choice of "As strong women" that left me feeling unsettled.

"As strong women" are three words that appear innocuous at the outset but in my opinion, elevate women of privilege and denigrates women with less privilege. When the words "as strong women" are spoken, the unspoken words sound something like: "as better women ... than those weak ones, those poor ones, those slutty ones, those pitiful ones ..."

I feel that if I as a woman am going to fight misogyny, I need to be aware that perceived strength in a woman isn't because that woman is inherently superior, or that perceived weakness in a woman isn't because that woman is inherently inferior.

Sometimes, when a woman exists within an environment of abuse, poverty, sexual oppression, the means for survival includes meekness and other strategies of finding ways to survive ... quietly sometimes ... outlandishly sometimes ... provocatively sometimes ... to finish the day with the currency she needs for her work so she can live another day.

I'm not saying that I don't want to be strong. I just want to talk about strength in ways that don't unknowingly ignore the dynamics of privilege among women and buy into the faulty notion that individual hard work is all I need to overcome structural oppression. As Catharine MacKinnon points out in Feminism Unmodified: "When a few of us overcome all this, we are told we show there are no barriers there and are used as examples to put other women down. She made it—why can't you? We are used as tokens while every problem we share is treated as a special case."

I want to be strong ... and I don't want to huddle with the privileged "as strong women" to inadvertently shame other women. And I don't want any perceived strength on my part to be used to prove that there are no barriers ... but because there are.

March 05, 2017

The Outrage

ArtwalkThe best thing a person said to me at last night's art walk is "I feel your emotions ... including the angst, the outrage ... in your work."

It was the best thing because I know that such emotions are frequently with me ... which I intentionally don't chase away ... as they testify to my observations of the world. I'm not afraid of them. And when another human can experience my art and connect emotionally ... well ... that's as good as it gets for me. And as much as I enjoy Happy, I seek not to order my emotions into a hierarchy because Angst and Outrage aren't less important. Even with a still life of apples or flowers from a garden or portraits of faces, I am interested in honestly expressing with urgency, emotions I have in response to what I see, what I feel. I don't want to stay in the shallow end of life pretending that I'm in the deep end.

Speaking of which ... I'd like to say again ... ENOUGH.

Enough from self-annointed authorities on "how to live life" who preach endlessly about what humans should feel, via the "choose happy/I'll pray for you" movement. I don't choose my emotions. I experience life and emotions happen. Art happens. Expressions happen. Connections happen. You want me to choose happy? You want to pray for my outrage to go away? I say to that: Mind your own feelings. Pray (if you want to) for your own self. Because your finger pointing to the moon is not the moon.

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