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The Year that Less Became More

More expectations of myself as an artist? More identity confusion as an artist? Am I a craftsperson? A fine artist? All that I really know is that ever since I took Amelia Rowcroft's on-line figurative art class, "Standing Strong", over the last year, and produced this, piece, I've wanted to keep trying to muster whatever it will take to keep doing portrait and figurative work. I think that's meant that I want to head in the fine arts direction, even this late in life if I can. Where that will take me, I truly don't know. Maybe flat on my face as a failure, but as a friend of mine likes to say, "Nothing ventured, nothing gained."

The bad news is that this has meant that I've sort of pulled back the reins on making pieces for Craft shows since I was a vendor in Franklin, Tennessee's Pumpkinfest, last October. I'll be volunteering to help other artists at the TN Craft Show this May, but didn't apply to their Emerging Makers Tent because I didn't have enough available pieces and I'm not really sure of the direction in which I'm heading. The muse has just stopped showing up for a while, but while I haven't been as productive in terms of completed pieces this year, I've instead attended several workshops across the nation, lead by talented portrait and figurative sculptors, each of whom has helped me stretch and grow as I timidly picked their brains. In doing so, after filing recent taxes, I've been somewhat aghast at the negative balance that my "art business" has accumulated over the last year, but at the same time, bit by bit, I think I'm starting to figure things out.

The on-line courses, the workshop fees here, the Airbnbs there, the meals, the transportation, the all starts to add up quickly. I'm just lucky that for now, my job as a therapist can support the art that I'm creating.

While I don't have a lot of smaller pieces to show for the last year, I've learned a great deal from the pieces that I've finished. Several of them are made with Plastaline, which means that I'll have to invest a great deal of money to either have someone make a mold of them or try to make the molds myself in order to be able to make casts (more investment) that I can [finally] try to sell.

Most recently, I attended a workshop in Las Vegas, at Anatomy Tools, lead by sculptor, Andrew Cawrse, where I attempted a figure that was to be longitudinally cut in half with the left side of the piece appearing as one would normally expect and the right half appearing as one would see with muscles only. I'm currently waiting to have the piece shipped home to be finished, but here is an example of the piece in process at Andrew's studio:

I'm waiting for my unfinished sculpture from the Las Vegas Anatomy Tools Workshop to be shipped to my home. There will be a longitudinal division where half of it will appear as one would expect and the other half will be exclusively muscle. 

On the last day of the Anatomy Tools workshop, our class was able to attend the Real Bodies exhibit at Bellagio, where cadaver bodies are exhibited in various positions for a clear anatomical view. Our instructor, Andrew Cawrse, lead us on a tour while our model duplicated various positions of the exhibits to show how muscles portray in life.

Andrew Cawrse discussing deltoid anatomy at the Real Bodies exhibit in Las Vegas.

Meanwhile, the hubs and I were able to have a bit of fun hiking Red Rock Canyon with our guide where we saw a lot of climbers.

And what would a trip to Las Vegas be without going to see The Grand Canyon.

Meanwhile, back at home in Nashville, Spring means seeing the turkeys get ready for their dances, herons nesting over Radnor Lake, and deer stopping to take in the view while they take a sip of the cool water. 

And last but certainly not least, next week begins the most recent workshop that I'll be attending that is fortunately here in Nashville, when Alicia Ponzio presents a 4 day workshop on the Torso at Warehouse 521. Finally, no Airbnbs or transportation costs!

Hope to see you there!

Happy Spring, everyone!

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