After the Umpqua shooting last month, I was feeling very depressed, feeling voiceless and helpless. It then occurred to me that I have a voice with my paintings, and I belong to a talented group of women painters and challenged them to paint the theme of "gun" for this month. It understandably was not embraced fully by everyone, but some felt it was important and were glad for the opportunity to say something through their art. The loss of life, innocence, and peace is impacting us all, and we must take time to examine our values, individually, and as a society.
This month's "Girls Just Wanna Paint" challenge was "Paint Like a Famous Artist." I almost phoned it in with an existing painting that I could have kinda sorta said was in the spirit of Van Gogh, because it was...kind of. But then a funny thing happened as I was putting away stuff in my studio, I came across a Campbell's Soup can that I keep pencils and small brushes in and I thought...hmmm, I can think of TWO artists to whom I could credit this subject matter, of course Andy Warhol, and my late mentor, Ros Farbush...she painted any old container she found around the house, usually filled with flowers...I tried to paint in her ultra loose style.
I painted this while on an outing with a large group of painters from the South Shore of Boston visiting the North Shore Arts Association. It was a wonderful day with great people and many beautiful settings. This was one of my paintings.
As a challenge for "Girls Just Wanna Paint" for July, we had to use "Fog" as our subject. I considered painting natural fog, but it didn't interest me so much, then I thought of the Washington, D.C. neighborhood of Foggy Bottom, but still not so much. Then, I decided to take it more to the figurative level.
"Favorite Object" was this month's "Girls Just Wanna Paint" challenge, and I was so stumped. At a time in life when I am trying to rid myself of objects and lead a simpler life, it occurred to me that perhaps I should paint the object of my deep appreciation, the place I call "home."
I often sit in traffic at the red light on this corner on Massachusetts Avenue and I see the white cat sitting in the window above Estelle's restaurant. Since our theme for the "Girls Just Wanna Paint" challenge for this month was "Comfort," I thought that this cat is the picture of comfort, in her window seat, queen of all she surveys.
We've been enduring heavy hits of snow and severe storms here in the Northeast resulting in driving bans, closed schools and businesses, and the most snow we have ever received at once in history. With snowbanks much taller than me, it's increasingly more difficult to move the snow from driveways and walkways. Rooves are collapsing and driving can be treacherous due to high snowbanks and narrow roadways. This weekend, between stints of shovelling, I made this painting.
"Love" was the theme for our January Challenge for Girls Just Wanna Paint. We happened to stop at this gas station in Ft. Myers, Florida last week and since it aligns with my love of the road, it seemed the perfect subject. To road trips!