Saturday, February 25, 2017

Waiting for Perfect

Waiting for the perfect time to embark on your dream.
Waiting for the perfect conditions to paint.

A lot of us dream about the perfect studio. I can see mine. It would be as spacious as the ones in a William Merritt Chase painting, with room on one end to gather and sit. It's huge windows overlooking an inspiring vista, would flood the room with light . My perfect studio has high ceilings, plenty of room to step back while painting, a gallery, and storage space. While I'm dreaming, I might as well dream up an assistant too to help with the mundane studio tasks!
But back to reality. My studio, though mostly adequate for my present needs, doesn't remotely resemble my dream studio. If I waited for my perfect studio, I'd have never started painting.
Water Cave-© Theresa Grillo Laird - oil - 9x12 - (sold) 

This painting, Water Cave was selected a few years ago for an Oil Painters of America exhibit. Let me tell you how it was created. My parents has become unable to manage their household, so I left my home and traveled north intent on staying with them for a few weeks until I could find a permanent caregiver. The weeks turned into months, each day filled with the tasks of daily living and caregiving. At night after my parents went to bed, I would break out my paints. My work space was the corner of a desk already filled with books and a computer. Dark paneling lined the room giving my dim little corner the ambiance of a broom closet. To paint Water Cave, I pushed back the computer keyboard and monitor, clamped a light to the desk and started working. At about 3:30 in the morning, I'd finished. In the morning light it just needed a few small adjustments. No one seemed enthused about the result but me. So, I submitted it, and it got in! If I'd waited for perfect conditions, nothing would have happened. So, wait for perfect? Not me!

Friday, February 10, 2017

Winter Exhibits

Setting up, K.C.Williams, curator at Mattie Kelly Art Center

It's been a busy two months. I've barely been out of my studio, preparing works for shows and art festivals. One of those shows is the Southeast Regional Fine Arts Exhibition being held at the McIlroy Gallery at the Mattie Kelly Art Center in Niceville Florida.  After the excitement of seeing the pieces of artwork arrive, the exhibition opened two weeks later on a night of unusual winter thunderstorms. The weather didn't stop the crowds who were also treated to a beautiful photography exhibit of last year's first place winner of the Southeast Regional. This year the curators cast a wider net for the exhibition, including artists from California, Colorado, Texas, Georgia and New York as well as artists from the southern US. 

awarding prizes

Jennifer McComas , curator of European and American art at the Eskenazi  Art Museum in Indiana, served as juror. With each prize she awarded, she included her impressions and reasons for her choices. I love when a juror takes the time to enlighten the audience with their thinking process! I felt honored when my entry, The Stillness of Winter, was awarded honorary mention! You still have time to see both exhibits until March 3rd. Here's the link for information.

I guess my studio time was paying off because the next bit of good news I received was that my painting Gulf Islands National Seashore-Coastal Path, has been accepted into the American Impressionist Society exhibition Impressions:Small Works Showcase in Costa Mesa California. I'm honored and thrilled!

Gulf Islands National Seashore-Coastal Path
Each season in a coastal environment has it's own special beauty. Now that Spring has arrived in Pensacola, I'm eager to be back outside painting in my favorite local spot, Gulf Islands National Seashore.
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