I have about 20+ paintings of women smoking or drinking, but mostly smoking.

My women who smoke do not look happy or content. Some of them look angry, sad or forlorn, like they have lost something and all they have is their own existential thoughts and a lonely cigarette (or a cigar).

 

But a few of my smoking women look resolute and strong, ready to kick someone's ass. My latest, called Melancholia, may or may not depict a powerful woman, but does it matter? Melancholia is still in progress, but it's close. 


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Melancholia, oil pastels, oil paint sticks, on an acrylic pumice base. 30 x 30 x 1.5 inches on a gallery frame.

 

 


I saw a painting of the beat writer Jack Kerouac, by Willaim Theophilus Brown. Brown was unknown to me but I immediately loved his style and wanted to replicate it somehow. His Kerouac is oil on a small sheet of paper. My Kerouac is acrylic with pumice on a 20 x 20 inch gallery canvas. As I almost always do, I have added a lot of texture.


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At my place of employment, most of my friends know I draw on notes and agendas or what have you, during meetings. Cowboy Bob and Bessie Meet the Whale was sketched out during a Student Services meeting, all of 3 inches by 7 inches big. After the meeting I kept the doodle and put it on my fridge. 

 

Here's a thing you can do with an old door! I was going to throw this basement door out. But there was three feet of snow outside at the time and it would of been a huge hassle to lug the door through the snow. At the time, I happened to be out of canvases and I saw the potential of the door, so I went for it. The result is Cowboy Bob and Bessie Meet the Whale, 78 x 32 inches. Can you see the doorknob?


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Using oil paint sticks on a base of acrylic pumice, I painted another woman with a cigar.  My first Woman with a Cigar was done completely with acrylics. That acrylic piece was at the Flow Art Space exhibit "Woman" most of the month of May 2014 (see my previous blog entry). I have had a lot of positive feedback regarding the cigar-smoking woman, so I just completed Woman with a Cigar No. 2, but as mentioned above, using oil paint sticks, which gives a completely different look on the canvas. The oil paint sticks adhere to the canvas differently, more chaotically than the acrylics. The way the paint is torn off the stick by the sandpaper-like pumice leaves me wondering how the painting will turn out. Sometimes it's successful, sometimes not so much. Here she is:


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This painting is 20 x 20, as opposed to the first Woman... which was 30 x 30.

I am enamored with oil paint sticks.




This past Friday night, had a great time at the Flow Art Space reception for the exhibit "Woman."

 

http://www.flowartspace.com/.

 


Lot of friends, great art, and excellent comments about Woman with a Cigar. And as cool as that was, there was a very cool jazz band playing downstairs at the Black Dog Cafe.  The Flow show contiinues until May 17 so check it out if you can. Here's a picture of me with my jaunty Irish cap, looking all Irish, with my painting.

 


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As a little kid in the sixties, with no dad around, and Mom working to support three boys and a baby daughter, I remember Mom made us meals like watered-down beans on bread, fried bread, or maybe ketchup sandwiches.  We were all living pretty close to the bone. I think all of us were hungry but we didn't know any better, so it goes. Occasionally Mom would bring home some scrapple, which we all loved because it was real meat, sort of, and you could put gobs of ketchup or mustard on it.

 

That experience inspired the painting, Mustard with Scrapple. This painting is a set of two, 20 x 20 x 1.5 inches, pianted on all edges in an abstract style I have seen around the Twin Cities and on some website galleries.

 

Mustard with Scrapple, acrylic on a course pumice base, with inclusions.

 
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Sometimes it feels like life is so lonely, even though it sounds crazy to hear myself say that because I am surrounded by people who love me. This painting, Stage, is a depiction of that loneliness, when one feels all alone.


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Stage. 20 x 16 x 3/4 inch, oil paint sticks on an acrylic pumice base. Heavily tectured.


Here are eleven people who are proud of their teeth. This painting is called Good Dental Hygiene. It is 12 x 12 on a canvas board, painted with oil paint sticks on an acrylic base.

 


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