Monday, January 17, 2011

Happy New Year! Honoring Heroes

I've just recovered my hope... after a long period of reflection... and in the process discovered new sources of joy.

Today is Martin Luther King Jr's day... a day to celebrate the vision, courage and hope that is necessary to take a stand against the oppression and bigotry that diminishes our collective humanity. I honor Dr. King Jr. with a commitment to expanding my own capacity for compassion.

I've been inspired to commit to a program of self-discovery via my creative efforts. Pictured at left is my most recently completed pastel painting, "Archie's Hat" which was inspired by Tim Keller's photograph of the same title. His photograph looked like a painting to me. The colors of the hand plastered walls were so creamy; the composition, letting us peek into Archie's bedroom with a painting by his dad, Hal West, hanging hanging above his headboard called out to me to take this image into pastel. I never met Archie's dad but I grew up amongst his family, an artistic and social family that has been an inspiration to me. Many memories from childhood are seared into my identity; always happy, vibrant and filled with people who I could look up to, as well as much art, dancing, Easter softball games, music and Halloween parties.

I use the photo to painting process on my pastel series works, using my own photographs up until "Archie's Hat". The idea to work with Tim's images has been percolating for the greater part of 2010. His subject matter resonates with my own photography and his camera is far superior to mine. I'm pleased with the results on this painting which I selected for purely selfish reasons.... I love the photograph and wanted to see what I could do with it. It thrills me to have new work finished in 2011 already framed.

The last series I completed was titled "The Road to Kindness" and gave me ample time to ponder the ways that I might contribute to a more compassionate world. I've posted photos of the series in my art folder at my Flickr site. I hope you'll visit them there, and when you come through town, in the gallery.

I joined Tim and my friend Monica at The Shuler Theater last Tuesday for a performance by a touring dance & drumming troup from Senegal West Africa. Tim's blog entry is a good read and sports some fabulous photos of the performers. Click this link to read his review of the show:

Just back from a weekend visit and after Yule party at my mom's, I'm feeling full of New Year cheer. I hope you are too!

Blessings for Peace and Happiness~ Christina


Mike Schoonover said...

I like the hat theme. Anyone who knows cowboys also knows how much character is absorbed by their hats. Not many other people or many other types of hat share quite the same connection.

Elizabeth West said...

Really interesting picture!
I agree with the comment above by Mike S. about cowboy hats.
What about a show of your cowboy images with Tim's side by side? It would be a fun show to see what you see in your husband's work. It would suggest to us all that we can take an image that is set out for us and then make it our own...
Just a thought...

I love seing what happens when a photograph becomes another artist's vision: that wonderful draw of energy that photography has is complemented by the intuition and introspection of the gift we get with a painting or pastel, etc.

So good to see both of you gorgeous people at Helen's terrific as always party!

Yvonne said...

Hi Christine,

Beautiful piece. I love the composition and your wonderful sense of color.
(Althought I felt a little foolish, wasn't it fun learning the African dance? What a marvelous performance)