Angela Bentley Fife's Artworld:

ANGELA BENTLEY FIFE'S ARTWORLD: all things right-brained.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

School Starts!

So, the first of week of school has almost come to an end. My 2 older muses are there all day. The house is eerie quiet.
Naomi wondered what I would do all day and if baby cried all day without her sisters home. After day 1 she asked "Were you so bored and sad today without us?" and I said "Very"....(wink, wink). It has been a long time since I was able to paint long sessions 3 days in a row. My gallery in the avenues asked for some paintings for a SL magazine advertisement, hence the landscapes. I have been wanting to get back to the landscape, but haven't done it with the new baby. It was delightful to paint plein air again. These are all small, immediate paintings--about 2 - 3 hours each. At this rate I might run out of ideas, or worse burn myself out, or worse get cancer from the paint on my fingers as I munch on chocolate chips while I paint, or worse, forget I am a mom and be outside painting at 3:30, or worse never clean my house again, or worse swear off anything trivial and paint every second of every day...Ok, let's not get crazy! But these quiet days of painting and watching my 'Bravo' Reality competitions are really agreeing with me. And then I get everything cleaned up, brush my hair to welcome the muses home at 3:40. Glorious!

Grandma Muse turns 96!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Portrait Sitting 3

After sitting #3 today while the kids were making jewelry and baby napping. The picture turned out a little darker than it really is. It's coming along. Naomi's critique today: "Sorry if this hurts your feelings, but the things around our heads don't look like angel thingies, they look like pans floating. Sorry, but that is what I think." The weird thing is, I think she is right in that they were a little distracting, so I took the halos down a notch and will bring them up a little more later. Countdown: Only 2 more days until school starts and painting begins! Sad and glad.

Mexico Art

I found this little gem of art on our trip to Mexico last month. I had no cash (on purpose so I wouldn't spend any) so thanks to my sister-in-laws and mom who pooled our pesos to help me buy this hand painted shadow box with Frida and creepy folky skeleton inside. It was a bit of a splurge, and I love it so much. I always try to find some kind of local art when I vacation, and this is one of my favorite I have ever found. My good husband rolled his eyes and pretended to agree to it's "coolness". Good response Jason. My obsession of Frida Kahlo continues.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Black Thumb

I spend 1/2 of my life creating things: babies, paintings, projects, foods,  etc. Why in the world can I not keep any plant alive inside or out? I have come up with a theory. I think my blood is too acidic. I may be a bit influenced by 'Breaking Dawn' in that theory, but it makes sense. I have come to realize that plants around here are now and forever "disposable". I always thought I would be a good gardener. I also read the other day of a study that showed plants that were talked to daily did better, and more interestingly, plants that were told "I love you" did best.....I don't think I'm ready for that, but be forewarned. I literally have killed almost 20 plants this year including 2 birthday presents (sorry mom). I have lost my confidence and the plants can smell low self-esteem. Maybe I am becoming Stay tuned, I just bought a beautiful mum to replace this sad guy.

Little Girls Portrait

After 2 painting sessions I am feeling pretty good about this painting. I feel about 1/2 done.  The top painting is the first sitting, and the bottom the 2nd sitting. They are both essentially value studies, but I think I like it without much color for now. I am not sure if I will add any more color, or keep it very monotone. They are starting to look like themselves as well. I have to let it cure a little before I can work on it again. I find myself more drawn to work on Naomi's little face than the others. (she is the far right). Maybe because she is looking at the viewer. I force myself to keep the other two up to the same level of finish. There is quite a bit of editing that happens in the process.
Naomi said "If mommy can't sell this painting of me than we get to keep it!!"........sad, and not exactly true.

Looking at it on this screen I can already see a few things I need to change....

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Accidental Photo

I found this photo on my camera and I can't figure out where it is or who took it, but I love the composition. It must be from our camping trip to Bear Lake a few weeks ago. Naomi, 6 and Ty, 13.

Painting Wall

This is where I hang my beloved painting collection. Most of them are from my painting friends in Iowa--trades. And some are mine and others are actually purchased. I love, love, love my paintings. I stand at my stairwell daily and just stare at them. My new weight-loss plan (to lose that baby weight) is to reward myself with a new painting every 10 pounds lost....Is that too personal? It's a better motivator than the former reward of cheese fries every 10 pounds, I think they call that self-sabatoge. Expect to see a few new paintings very soon.

Decor Bug

The decorating bug I got this week was to redo my front entry. I did have one large painting there by my friend Chris Vance, but wanted to put it on my 'painting wall' and do the entry with my myriad of photographs and prints. It beats them all sitting in a box in my bedroom for 2 I need to buy a nightstand I guess.

Our Craft

I know, nothing too special, but if you saw our process, you would know why we feel so proud about a finished product. The "cement" stones which I am pretty sure is your run-of-the-mill plaster, did not hold up to the dog stepping on it.  Which led to a very sad little girl. In my quest to find precious jewels for our garden stones I found those pretty green, totally natural colored little pebbles. They look like rocks from a fish tank you say? No comment.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

" A Family Portrait: the Broadbent's"

This is my latest commission and a new idea. I painted it for my beloved sister and her family (4 daughters and husband, JR). A family portrait of sorts. It was such a pleasure to paint this and one of the interesting byproducts was thinking about her and her kids for about 50+ hours of painting. She picked out 4 dresses to represent her kids that were sentimental for different reasons. It was a stretch to paint anything masculine (the 3 ties), but I managed fine and tried to get that over with so I could get back to pearls and toile. It was really large for me at 30 x 60". A good exercise to force myself to go big, but quickly painted 3 small paintings afterward....big takes more brain energy. Thanks Alisa for a real art experience. I love when a painting feels like you have moved up to another plane (small as it may be). I hope to do some more of these.