Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Sliding through January

 You must be kidding
Skype sketch
black marker on bond paper
Barbara Muir © 2011

Did you know -- of course you did that today would have been
Cezanne's 172nd birthday, which would have garnered him
title of oldest painter on the planet.  I have to admit I'm
a fan of Cezanne.  When Cubism hit him, he did exciting
things with it.  And I think he was almost as famous for
his fruit paintings, as the great Dutch still life painters.
But alas. Ah for the benefit of my feminist friends our own
Emily Carr (Canadian) was pretty great with a kind of
Cubism too.  Hers was more lyrical and organic than
angular.  Check it out.

Did you also know astronomers and astrologers calculate the positions
of the planets differently so that your horoscope could be one
month off due to something called earth wobble? Would that
make me a Libra or a Saggitarius?  I felt deliciously happy
to have given up all belief in horoscopes after watching the
movie Religulous when I read about that story.

In Toronto today a flash freeze after some rain made the
road so slippery that anything was possible.  I watched a
Cadillac SUV do a triple spin on black ice, and quickly
altered my driving route home.  (The Cadillac was safely
on its way don't worry.) Thank you to Flora Doehler for
recommending icers, which I put on my feet when I was walking
from my car to the school, and which let you walk across
glare ice without falling.

We get so tied up here with weather -- the pursuit of warmth,
the tense driving which makes your neck ache, that we do need
a little nap, a really good book and sometimes to practice an
image a few times before committing it to canvas.  I am in that
frame of mind today.  Let my hand slide across the page
measuring and measuring, in the sweep between hand and eye
to try and get the proportions of a face I'm painting just right.
You do it, I do it.  By the way two great paintings to check out
today are the entries of the International Women Celebrate
show in Ayr Ontario in March by Marcia Labelle and Nicki
Ault. I am getting more excited by the minute about seeing
all the magnificent work in that show hung together.  And
I hope that by March we'll have warm weather, and no snow.

My mind is sliding towards sleep, but before I go here's
a little Skype portrait sketch I did tonight.  It is not the subject
for my painting, but it is a happy image for me of a great
talk with some dear friends.

Have a sliding-towards-joy day. 
(And if you fall, I hope it's only to fall in love.)


Laurel Daniel said...

Love this one, Barbara!!! The marks are so fresh and spontaneous, AND bold at the same time! XOXOXO

Nicki said...

Barbara, this is such a fun, spontaneous sketch. I love all your Skype work.

Thank you so much for your help and encouragement on the IWC project. I truly appreciate the tips you emailed as I panicked over the portrait. And thank you for the mention in your post today!

I can't believe that in just over a month I might meet you!

Big hugs,

Melinda said...

This is a great sketch! I love the expressions on each of your sitter's faces. They look like really interesting people to talk to.

And, I must say, I love this post. It is engaging on so many levels. Nice work!

Had to go look at the icers. Whoa! Serious walking apparatus.

Stay safe.

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Laurel,

Thanks so much. I'm glad you like it.
I love all of your work.


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Nicki,

I feel like I should be writing you back and asking for tips on my next project. But alas. I have to go this one alone. Alone but happy because we definitely are going to meet on March 5th in Ayr. Right! Wow that will be so much fun. And I think the show will be staggeringly good.


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Melinda,

Thanks so much. Yes the Emily is for you and all other interested parties. Then what do you know today there is speculation in the Globe and Mail on who the "great love" was in her life that took her fifteen years to get over, and a picture of a picnic she attended with a "mystery" man who may be the one who kissed her and broke her heart! I mean topical or what?

But seriously the Cezanne (current joke to say "the" in the wrong places) the Cezanne was the man. Or one of them. What he could do with the fruit set off the fruit revolution we see carrying on to this very day.

Love Barbara

Flora Doehler said...

"Let my hand slide across the page measuring and measuring, in the sweep between hand and eye to try and get the proportions of a face I'm painting just right."
Beautiful prose Barbara!!
Thanks for your blog.

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Flora,

Thank you so much for your kind words. You are a sweetie.


Portrait Artist

My photo
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I paint and draw on commission and for shows. To commission a portrait, or purchase one of my paintings please contact me at:
A major highlight in my career? Drawing Oprah Winfrey live via Skype for her show "Where in the Skype are you? Galleries: Studio Vogue Gallery, Toronto, Canada. The Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York City. Gallery at the Porch Door, Kingston, Canada. Your positive comments on this blog mean the world to me. I'd love to hear from you!