I am blessed to live where my grandfather homesteaded, to have three beautiful daughters who are my best friends, to have six delightful grandchildren who live nearby, to be married to my sweetheart of 35 years and to thrill to the special magic of creating my own works of art. I'll never cease to thrill to witnessing new ideas and images come to life from the point of a pencil or splash of a brush.
I am blessed.
5.5" x 5" Mixed Media Drawing on 1890's Antique Dictionary
Like a lot of artists, I keep returning to favorite subjects and themes. I love the history, nostalgia and aesthetic of a bicycle. Years ago I first drew an old bike in an 1800's edition of a dictionary and the elegant definition described it as "a velocipede propelled by treadles." I loved that - still do. I had to do another bicycle drawing but this time decided to do a bike with the distinct, different sizes of wheels that matched those often used in the 1800's.
4.5" x 8" Mixed Media Drawing on Antique Dictionary
I am busy finishing up new work for my last art show of the summer. I am sad to see this summer come to an end. We have traveled from New York City all the way across the country to Oregon. We have met amazing artists, actors, celebrities and made lots of new friends along the way.
I love this rectangular dictionary and decided to revisit a few subjects I've drawn before. This time I wanted to create what looks a lot like my very first camera.
I am ending my summer art show circuit with a wonderful show on the historic plaza in Santa Fe, NM. This show is sponsored as a fundraiser for Girl's Inc. I am so pleased to help support this wonderful organization and thrilled to be spending a weekend in wonderful Santa Fe.
I have had a super busy month of July. We did a fabulous art show in Salem, Oregon and had lots of time with our family and friends.
One of the constants during the month of July was participating in World Watercolor Month with artists from around the globe. A young man named Charlie O'Shields launched the challenge that artists everywhere should attempt to create 31 watercolors in 31 days. I thought "Why not?"
Well, why not is that this challenge took a great deal of time and really challenged me to paint solely in a medium I use with a mixed bag of others. It meant painting everyday and painting while I was going to be traveling long distances during a lot of the month. But I decided the benefits of the challenge far outweighed these obstacles.
Lots of my artist friends, former and current students signed on too. Some made it to the finish line and a few dropped out. I gave myself the added challenge of using a set of cheap $5, children's watercolors so I could travel light and not have to waste my more expensive watercolors on these daily experiments. I also decided I wanted to paint quickly at the end of each day - only spending about 30 to 60 minutes on a painting start to finish. I bought an inexpensive, small Cason sketchbook and with only one exception when I left it behind - I did every painting in that spiral sketchbook.
So here is a brief little video of the daily paintings I created with cheap paint on a small, spiral notebook. I am a little sad the challenge is over but I learned a lot in the experience. For one, it reminded me of the feelings my students have when I challenge them to create their projects. It's good to remember the anxiety and pressure of painting/drawing so often. Another was the importance of sharing and posting one's artwork. I posted my paintings - warts and all - everyday on Facebook and Instagram. It was so encouraging to get feedback from people all over the world and it also helped me evaluate what appeals to people, is popular with the public and where I might go with other, more detailed pieces.
All in all I am so grateful for this 31 painting in 31 days challenge. It's happening again next year so maybe you will join in the adventure.
I've enjoyed a month long hiatus from creating artwork in my studio. I've still been busy in my studio but for the past few weeks I've been sorting, cleaning and trying to organize all my art toys. I love doing lots of different creative projects but it was past time I cleaned and stored my supplies.
This week I started some new drawings to take along with me to my next big art show in Salem, Oregon. My husband and I plan to leave bright and early Saturday morning for the long drive to the great Northwest. As I was preparing for the show, I've drawn some new versions of old themes and added a few new subjects like this old tattoo gun and cups of paint.
One of the constants at art shows around the country is all the crowds of inked people. I think people enjoy the artsy atmosphere of an art show and they want to join in by dressing so their ink shows. People watching at art shows is incredibly entertaining. Often the customers far outshine the artists with their creative wardrobes, hair styles and most of all - their tattoos.
I admit I don't have any tattoos myself. I've never really wanted one and often said, I would only get a tattoo if I could do it myself.
It's so much fun working my way through the alphabet on the children's old dictionary.
I knew I wanted to draw a vintage looking, crescent moon on the page with includes definitions for moon and moonlight but I wasn't sure what else I wanted to include. I wanted one more image that started with 'M.'
I considered monkey, mole, magician - nothing really sent me to the moon. (sorry about that) Mermaid just sounded the best. So here she is - basking in the moonlight.
12" x 9" Mixed Media Drawing on Antique Dictionary
I never really knew much about geology. We have a geologist in our family and last summer he treated our whole family to a trip to Utah to dig for fossils. I wasn't sure what to expect.
He packed each of us our own geologist backpack with all the tools we might need and then arranged for us to spend the day hammering away. We cracked geodes (my favorite) and then spent time hunting for trilobites - the little fossilized remains of prehistoric bugs. It was a great time.
We live in a state where there are lots of geologists so in response to their requests, here is my drawing about their trade.
My artwork is on the left. The art on the right is being promoted as original artwork by a man named Brinkman in Dallas.
Occasionally I discover someone plagiarizes my artwork and then promotes and sells it as their own. I am always disappointed that some people are so void of ethical character and imagination that they steal to produce art and then claim it is theirs.
I have been copied from time to time - most often by student artists who have discovered and admired my work so much that they contact me and ask permission. I am always thrilled to discuss my simple process and share with them so they can stand on my shoulders and do something even grander on their own. What an honor.
These students and their quality teachers show great integrity and appreciation for the artists they enjoy. Unfortunately, would-be artists like Brinkman Artworks also found at hhtp:brinkmanartworks-aaa.yolasite.com need to be exposed when they obviously steal.
9" x 12" Mixed Media Drawing on Antique Dictionary Page
I've been asked to create an Angel page for some time. I've debated about doing a male or female, child or adult - I just didn't know which direction I wanted to go. So instead of thinking too hard, I just let my pencil take me where it wanted to go. I started with a pencil sketch across this thin, fragile paper and I started first on the wing on the right side. As that image started to develop I decided I wanted to create something pretty classical so I studied a lot of Roman and Greek sculptures to try to create some sort of flowing robe.
As she developed I also saw a heart like shape and then knew how I wanted to finish to composition of the figure inside the wings. As always, the placement of the definition on the page had a lot to do with how and where everything needed to be placed.
I have lots of different kind of wings in my art studio - it is called "Flying Shoes" after all. So I had lots of feathers and faux wings nearby while I worked.
8.5" x 12" Mixed Media Drawing on Antique Dictionary
This piece was a commission for a friend who not only enjoys his whisky but also loves a good cigar.
I've done a whisky drawing before so the challenge on this piece was to do something a little different. I love the colors of this drink when the glass or decanter is hit with some light. To make this piece different, I decided it needed a different view so I chose a diagonal composition.
12" x 18" Mixed Media Drawing on Antique Dictionary Page
Who couldn't all use a little good luck and I am amazed at all the charms or symbols of good luck. Each culture has their own so I did a little research and drew some of my favorites on this terrific, old page.
I included a lucky penny, a wishbone, a ladybug, a rabbit's foot (I never understood that one), a horseshoe, some four leaf clovers, an ace of spaces, a lucky kiss, some Lotto balls, a gold fish, a lucky 7 hit on a slot machine, come dice and a maneki-neko (a Japanese beckoning or lucky cat).
This is one of my larger pieces which is actually draw on really old parchment that has had the dictionary page reproduced or as my printer says it - digitized on the paper.
Like I often do, I had to hide a few personal images on the page. You will note some of the dice have six on them to represent my six grandchildren. I also hid a little 60 partially on one of the Lotto balls since that is my age.
15" x 10.5" Mixed Media Drawing on Two Facing, Dictionary Pages
One of the wonderful things about doing a series of related pieces (often called an Area of Concentration) is exploring new and different approaches while staying true to the original idea. I think it is essential to constantly experiment and grow as an artist - I push my students to keep trying new styles, themes, subject matter, etc.
When I am examining dictionary pages to prepare a drawing I have often been faced with a definition that spreads across facing pages. I've usually discarded these pages but recently considered drawing across both pages and framing them together. This is my first attempt.
I love this old page and already have a double mat ready to frame. I'm planning to reproduce it for a print but may only format the left side....I'm still not sure.
The Flying Shoes Art Studio is owned and managed by Oklahoma, regional artist, Kristy Patterson. "My feet don't touch the ground when I am creating," Kristy claims and it is evident in her work that she soars both technically and creatively. Kristy currently teaches art at Guymon High School after twenty years spent in careers as varied as her artistic interests. Her employment has ranged from director of a residential drug rehab center to being a police woman all the while following her childhood dream of creating original works of art from her studio. Her artwork is collected and displayed throughout Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico and Kansas.
I know you will enjoy following her work!
Audrey Brooks, art dealer & friend - San Antonio, TX