Thursday, September 15, 2016

Sculptural Paintings

Despite the ongoing racket and activity of Jim's and my roof being torn off and rebuilt by our handyman and roofing crew this last several days, I still creep along at a steady pace with my painting, whenever I can sneak down to the studio. Often this happens from 6 o'clock until 8:30 or 9PM. Jim and I installed some new lighting in the studio, so now I can see with breathtaking clarity the details and colors of my work! And the mistakes!! Yow.

The Golden Modeling Paste I used on the series of Cuneiform and Cave Painting pieces that now hang at Olympic Cellars Winery, I've started using sculpturally. I mean, painting the paste on with palette knifes to create more than just textures. Certainly a good marriage of my old and my new career skills!  

The above paintings are titled, "Blue Laurel" and "Nomadic Couple". The faces of "Nomadic Couple" weren't exactly easy to whip out with the palette knife, so dental tools were employed to carve and refine their delicate features. 

I love how the initial image on the board flows out like a dream image. And as I've said previously, it's safer to not judge it, and try to "fix" it. Afterward, sometimes after several days, the painting strikes me with a message. Maybe a metaphor that has meaning to me.  And sometimes the meaning eludes me, as it's perhaps intended for someone else.  These works, like my sculptures, are alive. They find their own way through the world, bring something to someone else. Like R2D2. 


  1. These are wonderful, Elsbeth! That's what I saw when you first introduced them on fb, without faces yet, just the silhouettes - two travelers (or nomads, as you say). I see a little bit of Jim in the male nomad's face!

    Thank you so much for sharing your world with us, Elsbet! Knowing that I met you once (first time, by the way, through your art at Libby's, which I've always been admiring), and learning a little bit of your everyday process, helps me in enormous ways. As you probably can tell, I feel wobbly in my own artistic process - nobody ever taught me what it is to be an artist. I think my brother has stronger skills, or instincts that he trusts - he was always able to carve some time for himself, for his passion, whatever it was at one given point. Maybe it's because I'm a girl (they say gifted girls have a tendency to try to fit in), but it isn't as obvious to me. Sometimes I feel I just wander aimlessly. Other times, I see that I do make a progress. But it is still a long way to learn how to live an artistic life. So when you share yours, it is like a text book to me. Or rather, like having a master teaching me some secrets of the trade. Thank you.

    1. Natalia, your words warm my heart! As my career has progressed through the decades, it's become clear to me that selling my work was not as important to me as the joy of encouraging others to follow their vision and embrace their own brand of creativity. I had a very talented mother who felt guilt and self esteem issues around her gift, ultimately turning her back on it. She was supportive of my talent, only so far as I didn't turn it into a career (secretarial work and marriage seemed so much more appropriate for a woman), so art schooling was out if the question. I am almost entirely self-taught, with only my passion to propel me through my success story. There were so many terrifying barriers I broke through, believe me! Most of which were self imposed. You are a gifted woman, Natalia, passionate. You have ALL the tools you need to enjoy and succeed at what you do. And don't forget, Creatives are a very special populace who live outside of the rules of our society. You can do whatever the hell you want, you are an ARTIST!

    2. Thank you for this, Elsbeth! :) It means so much to me. Even Justin now repeats this phrase. :)

    3. Haha! He should be careful who he says it in front of, some people misunderstand the intent behind it! Yes, it was a lovely meeting we had as a result of our connection with Libby, wasn't it? It would be so great to get together again. She lives on in my heart always.

  2. Elsbeth theses are incredibly cool. What an interesting process! I really love the concept of allowing the painting time to communicate its message 😊 These two speak eloquently.

  3. Thank you, Joyce! You are so kind. I really value your viewpoint!