Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Da Vinci Rules!

This weekend I went to the touring exhibit of Leonardo da Vinci. He was a spectacular genius in everything that interested him. They said he had a lovely singing voice, taught himself musical instruments (and, of course invented a few), made special theatrical rigs for the stage, and the list of his innovations, inventions, art, architecture and many other accomplishments goes on and on. All of this does not consider the time he spent in the service of others while trying to support himself. He was apprenticed at 14 and died at age 67. He did all of this in less than 53 years!

How did he do it? Was it because there weren't the distractions of TV, computers, and movies? Probably. But there was his own relationship to his work and problem solving. This is what Leonardo wrote: "Every now and then go away. For when you come back to your work your judgment will be surer. Go some distance away because then the work appears smaller and more of it can be taken in a glance and a lack of harmony and proportion is more readily seen."

I saw this among his epigrams in the show and I wanted to share it with you because is it such good advice in all thorny issues.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Etsy and Me

I'm trying to set up my Etsy account so that I can offer my Note Cards and Greeting cards. Plus I have ideas for limited edition engraved cards that would be gifts and greetings all in one. Any ideas or suggestions on setting up on Etsy would be much appreciated.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

"Hidden World" at the White Lotus" art series

It felt so good to finish this art series of 6 artworks. As I completed each one I sensed a personality for each art piece. So, I named each piece based on the mood it evoked. What titles do these paintings bring to your mind? (This series now available in note/greeting cards, too)


"Emergence" pastel painting seems like the little jar is tentatively peeking out from the shadows. Larger version


"Discretion" pastel reminds me of a secret meeting - like the old film noir where the veil hid the woman's face.Larger version


"Illumination" pastel shows a little yellow box illuminating as the cabinet door opens. Larger version


"Reminiscence" pastel makes me think of the times when two people share the same memory. Larger version


"Passion" pastel art piece with red light casting shadows which turn cool on the blue vase. Larger version


"Quietude" pastel reminds me of the quiet place I would hide as a child. Larger version

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Artists and the "Black and Squishy"

Yesterday, I had an interesting conversation with another artist. For as long as I've known Allie she's been identified with a certain type of ceramics. She's reached an exhaustion of every idea and variation she can imagine. A space has opened and she is searching for a new direction.
This is a time in her creativity which she described as "black and squishy." I like that. Black and squishy gives an image to that scary place where all of the artist's fears arise. It's the place of insecurity. It's the place where artists decide to mess with their success.
I remember reading that when Jackson Pollock moved away from the splatter painting, he lost a lot of gallery interest in his work. It's a tough call. Once an artist is "branded" and has public recognition, what happens if they reach a black and squishy place?

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

It's Spring!


R.Atencio Blue Iris

What a wonderful time of year - the flowers are poking out of the ground and the trees are full of buds and blossoms. I've committed to taking my camera with me this days to take photos for my ever-growing image gallery. I often look there for inspiration and ideas for paintings and sculptures. Recently, I went through my art gallery of floras. Here's a picture of one I did a while back and now offer on my website (http://www.r-atencio.com) as a gift or note card. I'm including this one on my blog because it looks like the flowers I'm seeing on my walks.