I think by now, that anyone following my blog knows I am pulled to images like a magnet. I get some kind of energy, some kind of inspiration, some kind of emotional food and water nourishment. And behind the painted image, there is an artist who has put paintbrush to canvas. And I know that process and all the trials and tribulations and joys that go into creating a work of art.
Upstairs, in my house I have a square hallway. Along one wall is a bookcase, floor to ceiling. Across from that is a linen closet and doorway. And on the two side walls I have a collection of small posters, postcards, and photos of images that give me inspired boosts of energy. The wall I am sharing today, has images of women. Here’s a few of my favorites:
Portrait of a woman in a hat by Pierre Auguste Renoir, titled Madame Renoir, oil 1885. Several months ago I rediscovered this image, actually didn’t even know I had it, and since I love a straw hat, this image became my most recent addition to the wall. I connect with this middle age, slightly plump woman with those rosy cheeks and that flowered hat. She gives me joy! I like the palette of colors Renoir used: pastels of pink, blue, yellow and then there’s some drama in the darker hues around the face.
Next are two very different paintings by Pablo Picasso.
To the left, Woman in White, mixed media, 1923 and to the right, Woman with a Book, oil 1932.
This portrait head was painted by Alexej Von Jawlensky in 1916 and titled Dreaming Head. I’ve seen two art shows of Jawlensky’s work, both at the Long Beach Museum of Art, but in two very different venues. The first time was maybe in 1995 and the Museum used an old renovated building or house. Presentation of art can change the viewer’s experience. In 1995: the ceilings were low, the floors wooden, the rooms small, and the experience very intimate, bordering on sacred.
After the renovation, maybe in 2000: the ceilings now high, the floors now tile, the rooms now large. The presentation was large and lost and impersonal. Now, if I had nothing to compare it too, I might not be able to write that this was my reaction. But, in 1995 my mind was soaring high and my reaction to art was profound and seeing Jawlensky’s art for the first time left a huge impression on me.
I’ve debated about whether to share one or two of my paintings in the same blog as these great artists. Definitely need a woman artist for balance and I think these paintings can hold their own.
So here goes: from the “Celebration of Color” series by Linda Ruddy:
Dueling Personalities, acrylic, 2000; Artist: Linda Ruddy
Which Part of Me is the Femme Fatale?, mixed media, 1994, Artist: Linda Ruddy
I’m sharing my work because I have a possible goal for 2015. First I need to decide if I’m going to pursue it, and then I need to build up creative energy and a major push to get the goal accomplished. In 2015, The National Museum of Women in the Arts will begin their online digital archive of women artists.
There’s been an archive for years but the rules used to require that before you could physically submit reference materials of an artist’s work, the artist needed to have a solo exhibition. It took me so long to fulfill this requirement, that by that time I had solo showings in 2001 and 2002, the Museum had changed the rules. This has definitely been a long-term goal in the back of my mind that I am still thinking about.
However, right now I am on a mission to complete my novel. My mind is wrapped around the story and characters and I can’t move on YET. If I don’t continue to put energy into my writing I may just give up on it and I’m not ready to do that.
So what wisdom is there here, now. Have goals! Finish one project before moving on to the next! Stay inspired! Keep your passion!