Sunday, January 29, 2012

New Year, New Work



I'm working on a brand new series in preparation for my first solo gallery show, which will take place in March, 2012 at The Gallery at Main Street Landing in Burlington, VT. The new pieces are inspired by the simplicity and complexity of trees.

The Blessing Tree
36x48
Enamel on Canvas

I'm working with oil-based enamel sign painter's paint and canvas.  After doing a brief stint with classic oil paints, I'm enjoying the fluidity of the sign painter's paint.   I'm using my grandfather's beautiful (antique!) brushes for this series, and feel so honored to hold these gorgeous tools in my hand when I work.  

My grandfather's sign kit.

 Safety First!

 I'm doing it all freehand, with no tape, nothing.  
The challenge of freehand is great, and has been doing so much
for my concentration and focus.  It also amazes me that my grandfather did this every day for 40+ years.  The admiration I have for this lost art is so deep.



As I finish more pieces I'll post photos in my portfolio gallery.  In the meantime, please 'like' me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/jodiwhalenart





Saturday, April 16, 2011

"The Family of Things"

I'm working on some new pieces for the upcoming Vermont Children's Trust Foundation's Art of Giving fundraiser on May 14th. I decided to create new work for the event, based on poems by Mary Oliver. This first piece is inspired by the poem "Wild Geese" , and by an early morning walk along the icy shores of Lake Champlain.

"The Family of Things"

My studio is located a few hundred yards from Lake Champlain. I'm grateful that I have the opportunity to take in the beauty of this amazing place before I start my day of painting. This day was bright blue from shore to sky, and the water was lush and full with melted mountain snow, inspiring me to use these colors in my painting.

At first, when I decided to work from poetry as an inspiration, I envisioned the new painting being more floral, light, and nature-based. However, as I read this poem and really absorbed it, I was inspired to work in layers of abstract shapes and bright spring colors. "Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine" speaks to how we naturally hide some of our emotions, and often don't feel that they're justified. By creating layers of images that flow and jump, are then covered by blue and white paint, but yet still show their texture, I communicate how, despite our attempts to hide our feelings, they often still show themselves. And sometimes, if we let them appear and accept their presence, they actually color our personalities in a lovely way and expose the beauty of what makes us who we are.

"the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese,
harsh and exciting--over and over announcing your place
in the family of things."


Detail, "The Family of Things"

Sunday, January 9, 2011

New Year



"Pie" Acrylic on Canvas, 30x40

Detail, "Me." Acrylic on Birch.

New year, new work. I'm working on bigger canvases, and am focusing on simplifying some of my pieces, although in some ways that's almost impossible for me. I'm thinking more about memories when I paint, and how they are shaped, and what they would look like if we could see them. Working in layers provides me with the opportunity to communicate the experiences we have when simple thoughts or words enter our minds. The word "Me" immediately sets off a firestorm of images, feelings, colors, shapes and sounds. Who are you? Who am I ? What comes to mind, and how can I capture all of those memories and retrieved "files" that fly into thought when one word is uttered.


Me, Acrylic on Birch.










Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Art Hop 2010


My work is on display at August First Bakery for the month of September, along with the work of my daughter, Olivia Hoh. Olivia loves photography, and is showing some of her very cool pics of life through the lens of a 13 year old. If you're out Art Hopping, please stop by to check out our show!
Untitled Photograph/Holga
Olivia Hoh


Sunday, August 15, 2010

New Work, "Olivia"

I just moved into a new studio on Flynn Avenue, in the old VT Children's Trust Foundation building. It's an atypical studio space, very un-hip and plain jane. I have a two room office suite with wall-to-wall carpet, a drop ceiling and florescent lights. Yawn! However, it's incredibly cozy, and just what I wanted. One room holds my workspace, and the other room holds my tea kettle and 4 pillows, so I can drink tea and nap. All part of the creative process!

I've been stretching my vision and my technique lately, and am very happy with the new direction my work is taking. I started to explore the use of older family photos as inspiration, and have really enjoyed taking the time to delve into the spirit and memories that go with them. My latest completed piece, "Olivia", is of my daughter at age 4. I love the look on her face, and the lines of the floor, her legs, and the counter behind her. I remember this time with a full heart. She was lacing up her tap dance shoes, wearing a big winter hat, a tank top shirt and matching skirt, and her ubiquitous tights. Her look said, "put away that camera, mom, can't you see I'm getting ready to dance?"

This piece is painted with Holbein Mat Acrylic paints, a line that I like a lot for its fluidity, coverage, and color selection. I used a base of warm browns, followed with layers of deep red highlights. I used a variety of tools, including an Xacto knife to add some of the details. My favorite new tool is a marker-like pen called The Incredible Nib that I dip in diluted paint, and then use to draw details. I can't allow a painting to sit very still, so I added the white box and white highlights to keep the eye moving and to keep the piece lively.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

To the Bridge

I'm pretty excited to be back in the art saddle again, after slowing down for the past year in order to get the bakery off the ground. It's been great in some ways to have a little break, because some new directions and new artistic expressions are coming out.

I did this piece, "The Day They Blew Up the Bridge" for an upcoming show at the gallery Studio V in Vergennes, VT. The opening is on Saturday, August 7th from 6-8pm.

I took my children to the bridge the day they demolished it, and one of the more memorable images that stuck with me was the isolation seen while walking toward the site. It was a cold, dark day, and the sky and the ground were almost the same shade of gray. People walked quietly toward the bridge, to give it one last look before it was demolished. I took photos along the way, and used them as reference for this painting.

Monday, April 12, 2010

New Work


Forward!
16x22
Acrylic on Canvas





Albert St 1975
16x20
Acrylic on Canvas




Decatur St 1992
24x36
Acrylic and Ink on Canvas




Albert St 1983
16x20
Acrylic and Ink on Canvas




The Locals Lined Up
12x12
Acrylic on Board




Elbow Room
22x30
Acrylic on Canvas



Henry St 2010
12x12
Acrylic on Board




Henry St 2010
Acrylic, Needle and Thread on Board
12x12




Art is Good
12x12
Acrylic and Ink on Canvas




The Way Out
Oil on Wood
30x48

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jodi.whalen@gmail.com