Paintings With Soul

Since October 2006 I've been a daily painter, creating a new pet portrait at least 5 times per week. Over the years I've expanded my offerings to include a variety of animals, pets, race horses, children and other treasured heirlooms. In addition, I accept a limited number of commissions each year.

In 2015 I am honored to be the Kentucky Derby Artist.

You may use the links below right to receive my daily paintings via email or to follow my blog with a feed. I post additional info, including in-process jpgs and other related information, on the studio Facebook page as well.

Meanwhile, thanks
so much for your continued support of my artwork.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Rejuicing



My digital painting inspired by Claude Monet's "Water Lily Pond, Green Harmony." The Monet is currently on loan from the Musee d'Orsay (Paris) and on display at the Detroit Institute of Art through this Sunday. My piece was done on an iPad using ArtRage and a Sensu Brush & Stylus.

I occupied the bench in front of this painting for about 90 minutes. First I listened to people's reactions - they were talking about the painting's place in history (I heard a great variety of stories!) and taking selfies (non flash photos were allowed in the darkened space). Whenever the gallery emptied, I had a quiet conversation with the piece - from across the room and from within inches. Eventually I pulled out my iPad and began sketching. It was cathartic and enlightening.

Today I immersed myself in the Impressionists, first hand. I visited the DIA and hung out with some of the biggest names from the turn of the century - Monet, Manet, Cezanne, Van Gogh, Matisse, Toulouse Lautrec, Vuillard, Bonnard, Renior, Cassatt, Morisot, Degas, Metcalf, Sargent, Redon, Dewing. It was some esteemed company well worth shaving my legs for! (view pics of some of my favs)

Impressionism as a movement is wildly popular today, and perhaps that is because it is, to the modern eye, easy to digest. Beautiful colors, riotous brushwork, everyday sort of models. However, at the time these pieces were created, they were condemned by scholars and critics for being crude and altogether common. It is a testament to the artists' vision that they continued creating and exploring despite the cold reception and biting reviews.

Besides the fact that the work is indeed beautiful, here's why I appreciate Impressionism:

These artists rejected traditional academic art, art that was heavily steeped in realism, symbolism, religious/literary themes and formulaic compositions. Impressionist artists chose a new direction steered by emotion, gesture, the modern world/common man and experimentation. 

And light. Paintings became about light instead of about the subject matter, about an experience, a transient moment.

It's one thing to sit down and paint an apple. It's altogether something else, though, to give that apple a kiss of the evening's sun in a nest of dappled branches, and make the viewer reach into the foliage.

That's what I admire about the Impressionists. They painted more than objects - they invited us to step into their paintings and experience them firsthand.

Which I did today. And I'm feeling all the better for it.

Here's to a New Year full of continued beauty and inspiration, Kim
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