Summer sisters

 
Glacial Pool No. 1 & No. 2, 2019

Glacial Pool No. 1 & No. 2, 2019

 

Enjoyed working on these sister paintings. This commission got me back into color and I’m loving it. Layering and finding balance between two pieces was a fun challenge. Looking forward to seeing them in their Arizona home.

ArtWorks Northwest: Group Show

 
Marquam, 2018

Marquam, 2018

 

I am excited to announce that one of my paintings, Marquam, has been selected for the Artworks Northwest Exhibit. This annual juried show is organized by the Umpqua Valley Arts Association.

ARTWORKS NW OPENING
Friday May 17 from 5-7PM
The Hallie Brown Ford Gallery
Rosenburg, OR

This year’s juror, Danielle Knapp (curator at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art), has chosen work from over 600 submissions they received from Alaska, British Columbia, Washington, Idaho, Montana, Northern California, and Oregon. This year they have accepted work from 56 artists.

Incubation

 
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Winter is usually a time of retreat and reflection. This year more than others, I craved solitude. Time to myself away from the studio to replenish my creativity. At first, I was wondering why I was avoiding the studio. I realized it was because I didn't know what to do next.

I knew my work needed to evolve, but how? I should work through it, right? I should make a bunch of ugly work and learn through the process of doing. I should redirect my attention to a completely new project so I can get reenergized from working in a different way. I should... but I didn't and I'm not. Not right now at least.

I listened to a podcast and two episodes resonated and reframed how I considered my experience*. I transitioned from thinking I was in a dead/dry spell to realize I am in an incubation phase. Yes, I am replenishing my creative energies but I am doing more than that. Under the surface, I am sorting out what I want to do next. I'm mentally trying to evolve my work and practice. Eventually, I will need to work it out on the canvas/paper/whatever but for now, I am okay with absorbing, conceptualizing, and thinking about new themes I'd like to explore.


*The Messy Studio put out these two episodes that really spoke to me...

Keeping It Going: Maybe it is a reflection of the winter doldrums but blocks and downtimes can happen any time of year. How do you cope with feelings of boredom and frustration that make it hard to keep working?

Changing Directions: The creative journey is never a straight path and all artists go through times of change in their work. These are necessary but can also be frustrating and painful as you head into the unknown. Today we’re going to talk about times of change in your work and some of the challenges that artists face.

SUNDANCE SHOW, ROOT'D - PARK CITY, UT

 
Caloplaca, 2017

Caloplaca, 2017

 

6 colorful pieces created in the mountain town of Banff will preview at Root’d in Park City for Sundance.

ROOT’D OPENING RECEPTION
Friday, January 25 from 3-7 PM
596 Main Street
Park City, Utah

If you are unable to attend, feel free to request an online preview. All art is for sale.

Everyday Rituals

 
Sage from Sisters, OR

Sage from Sisters, OR

 

One of my goals this year is to have a more dedicated sketchbook practice. I’ve been feeling a little unmotivated with my painting series so getting back into drawing from observation seemed like a useful activity. As I was drawing this sage bundle that’s in my studio, I was thinking a lot about rituals. As artist, we talk about the daily rituals that help us establish our creative space and initiate our practice.

The ritualization of the mundane invites the mind to settle into the body. It creates opportunities to get quiet, to feel honestly, to look inward in a world that is begging us to look elsewhere. Over time, it can help us connect to spirit and share it with those around us.

– The Spirit Almanac

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I am unsure of how this practice will inform something more significant but I see a path, and it’s calling me to move down it. There is a nugget. A piece to explore. Keep drawing. Research rituals.

Reflect, a year in review

 
Black Tupelo, 2018

Black Tupelo, 2018

 

I’ve liked the yearly word mantra approach instead of resolutions, for 2018 mine was SETTLE. After three years of moving four times, five different jobs and shifting our lives I was ready to sink my feet in and be in one place physically and beyond. The word settle became my grounding rhythm.

In 2018 I claimed the title of “artist.” My art studio was entirely built out, and I covered the floors in paint. It was my first full year of flipping between freelance and my art practice. I found my flow in the studio but with life as well. I no longer used google maps to find my way around town, I learned the names of my yoga teachers, and our house felt like home. With these grounding elements, I was able to stretch my art practice and focus on accomplishing some goals. I had my first big solo show in Portland and various group showings as well. My artwork got published in Maker's Magazine, and I had two artist features that allowed me to open up and talk about my practice. I met and began to build an artist community for myself. These steps, little and big have created a solid foundation for me and my work. I produced over 40 pieces of art. Stretched and started a lot more.

Light, dark. Good, bad. Nothing is black or white. We exist in the greyscale. 2018 also brought a lot of lows. I was rejected (well, waitlisted on one) from every residency I applied to and several shows as well. My mental and emotional health crashed in the spring. All the significant shifts finally caught up to me, and my depression was in full force. I was sorting out health issues alongside this (man, it's all connected) but rounded a corner by May.

All the way through, I've felt good about my work and my practice. I've seen it evolve and improve and I am looking forward to building upon this momentum. I enter 2019 feeling mentally and physically sound. I've started to write various proposals and let's just say the ideas are brewing. I am excited for this year and what changes it may bring.

This year I will lean on the word ACCEPTANCE. I appreciate the nuance of the dictionary meaning and psychological meanings (self-acceptance especially). I hope that becoming more in tune with this word I can set more boundaries for myself and put my energy into things I can control and not ones I cannot. There will be a lot of letting go and coming to terms.

2019, here we go.

THE BIG DARK

 
Kristan Kennedy at Fourteen30

Kristan Kennedy at Fourteen30

 
 

“The Big Dark is a cloud … you appreciate it for reminding you that there is an above and a below. You could think of it like you think of a condition — something ominous or something pestering but also something you get used to, that you can’t do without.”

- The Big Dark at Fourteen30 Contemporary