Friday, April 20, 2012

Don't Think, Do...

plinth with removable armature
You all know the saying, "Life is what happens while you're making other plans...."  The April OVERWHELM is behind me, done in by focus on this wonderful and challenging two-figure sculpture that I've been working on steadily for almost 2 weeks.  The whole question was settled by the cold that developed into bronchitis that precluded even moderate physical exertion in the great Spring outdoors, and left me sitting happily under the skylight in my studio with my clay. I wired  my to-measure armature  onto the sturdy and versatile plinth delivered by my sculpture guy Brian , with a separate (less sturdy) armature for the female figure - both figures are to be 1/4 life-size - he, at 6'2", comes to 18.5", and she, at exactly 5' tall, would be 15", and they are seated, she on his lap. The cross pieces mark his shoulders and hips, and his "backbone" locks into its seat but can be lifted out. Her armature will bear no weight so needs to flexible, not so sturdy.
Using a hard Plastilene clay(oil-based), I blocked in both figures, maintaining the  proportions as much as possible,
clay of two nude figures, the female sitting in the male's lap with my photographs and measurements for reference. Establishing the gesture and proportions are the focus here as the clay becomes quite solid and intractable, the more that is added.  After somewhat developing the figure and face of the female, the problem that remained was making the two fit together in the way that flesh does naturally - it flows in and out and around other opposing flesh. At that point, I cut up two old little paintings (needing the plywood that made the cradle for the painting surface), and glued and sanded them to fashion a simple bench for the seat. I made a slot in it, to allow it to slip under the male and around the pole supporting him. The top of the bench would require building up to meet his bottom
Moving on to the male figure, I began to realize that in order to work with them and fit them together perfectly I would have to remove the arms, all four of them, on order to perfect the bodies, simplify the molds, and make it easier to work them separately.

That done, I began to work on the detail of the male figure. And here's where I am at this point. (Actually I'm a bit further along, but more about that later). The piece is called "Golden Anniversary".

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Posting for TWO

        The JIN's Matsuri is behind us, it was productive and fun, and I just have to share one more reason we love it. This is a young Japaneses performer who played some strange acoustic instrument - such fun! and when he came by, he cheerfully played air guitar with Bill's hickory walking stick!  Is there any language that doesn't understand air guitar?
Santa Fe Creative Tourism pairs artists with S.F. visitors seeking a more personal direct experience with all we have to offer here. They created videos of their associated artists for their website. We received William's yesterday - it really turned out well so here's the video!! SF Creative Tourism is a wonderful service - they work hard providing opportunities such as these, and should be applauded!!!
         The opening of New Mexico Art League's Dancing with Dragons show is this coming Sunday, 1-5pm and we hope to be there. Come celebrate this powerful year with us!
           My sculpture commission is underway, and I'll post about it next - just had to choose today between this and that (always difficult for me)!
BE SURE to check out the VIDEO!
Marianne and Bill

Sunday, April 1, 2012

April Fool's Day

William Preston, Koi Pond, sumi/wc on rice paper, or The Koi the raccoon ate.. 

I'm blogging today first to say the JIN was a great success and thanks to all of you read this blog and wished us the best, who came by to say hi and see William's latest work, and to the new visitors who became fans and friends. The Matsuri is one of the year's milestones for William, much anticipated and enjoyed(by me too)!
and now for APRIL...
For me, the main month of yearly OVERWHELM is APRIL. With the outdoor show season almost here, a commission to get underway,  new works on paper to be done to entice visitors into becoming collectors, and always the BIG OUTDOORS in our yard, still awaiting the attention lacking since last fall, one hardly knows where to start.  The obligatory head cold acquired on the S W Airlines flight to Seattle last weekend doesn't stir enthusiasm for tasks involving physical exertion either. As always, we'll somehow get through it, and anything left undone will just add a layer to things left undone and seem less important in a month.  I did get the backyard pond filter cleaned this morning, so the little pond is gurgling now instead of stagnating, and a few piles of locust tree pods raked up - oh why, oh why didn't I cut that tree down twenty-nine years ago, I ask myself yearly.  This year instead of running back inside when I see it all waiting, I'm promising to take some time today, and make a huge list with headers,  ART, and OTHER, and see if I can make a lot of headway on the first column and a little headway each day on the 2nd column.  If it doesn't all happen, so be it -  I'll find the hose swallowed by the over-grown weed grass (it's called cheat grass locally) when I really need it and maybe I don't really need to start a PROPER compost pile THIS spring!

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