Monday, August 17, 2009

Two Voices-Paintings With Poetry has arrived!!

My new Blurb self-published book just arrived!The results are satisfying and the response by people who have seen it is gratifying. I have sold eight copies to my own surprise! I had undertaken the project to complete another part of my own journey and goal achievement...and really to provide each of my five children ,my supportive friends and my collectors a record of my 'two voices' working as they always unison.

You can sneak a preview of the first sixteen pages by "Googling" to Bookstore...then Title:Two Voices...or Author:A.W.Bruce Sherman. Alternatively you can do the same by connecting to our web site at

Back to the easel...outdoors...the weather is finally...Summer like!
Good painting!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Cruising...through a wet summer

This summer has been very unseasonable for our area. Rain seems to be the order of business every weekend...and for much of the week as well.The corn is heat to speak of...and drenched fields.Unusually fast running rivers, streams have taken 6 lives in our area.Tourist travel is down...and the mood of the "average man" is low..or at least complaining.

Fortunately, I have the warmth of studio lights and my easel to dispel those feelings and a goodly number of supportive clients who have graciously given me commissions to work at. I am blessed...and truly grateful for these opportunities!

On Thursday, I accompanied an interior designer I work with to a sumptuous home...with bare walls beckoning. The prospective clients already have a few pieces of my work and are looking for some more to place in their new "castle"- Cape Cod period. They are nice folk....a necessary ingredient for me in the commission undertaking. I have to have a good feeling about them...and their home.That point was easily reached in one meeting with them.

So the next part of the process is to produce several "thumbnails" which serve to allow me to present my "inclinations"...prior to undertaking the 48 x 60 inch canvas they have requested for their living room. Since the dimensions of the final painting g are 48 x 60 inches...I will use an 8 x 10 in sketch panel format for these "thumbnails".Each will focus mainly upon subject...composition...and colour aspects of the final selection...but NOT detail. I give them my "idea" then request 5the permission to "run with the idea"...artistically.

I am excited to begin....already have six landscape subjects in mind...and am doing rough ink thumbnails to kick start my artistic juices!Let the game begin!!!

Cheers...and good painting to all! Stay tuned!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

More on the Algonquin Foray

Despite the fact that it rained...albeit and on over the entire three days that Deb and I were in the Park, it was refreshing to get away from the "din"of noise and activity from which there seems little escape close to any large urban area these days. I crave solitude at times...and this opportunity to get away ensures that I get this. We were the invited guests of my painting pal in the Park, David Kay and his lovely wife Diane. They own and operate The East gate Motel in Whitney, a small town on the very eastern entrance to the Park.

We get along... "like a house on fire"so the trip blends painting with friendship for all four of us.Thanks to the proliferation of black spruce that dominates every part of this pristeen wilderness, we were able to find locations suitable to paint well as cover when the inevitable showers came. Even the wind seemed to be on our side as well. Not too strong that the easel setups were safe...but strong enough that they held most of the mosquitoes and horseflies( which plague you during the summer months in Algonquin)at bay during the two and one half hour painting times.

David is both an accomplished painter and a woodsman who knows this country like the back of his hand, so finding new places to any season is an easy task.We both ended up completing three pretty good canvases...and Deb managed a nice waterfall scene as well. She has a nice touch I might add...and is growing in confidence in her efforts to paint on location.It is wonderful to have someone at your side who is willing to share the experience...and the rigours one must undergo at times to be "out there" I call it.

The word "plein air " seems hackneyed these days and seems to denote that anyone who paints a few pictures using this method produces superior work to that of artists who work in the studio. I have painted outdoors for almst thirty yearsand that all seasons has equipped me to feel both capable...and comfortable in the studio during times when the weather will not allow you to be "out there".Both types of painting support and depend upon each other.

Here are the other two "sketches" coming out of that Algonquin Adventure. Hope that you enjoy seeing them much as I did producing them.Green is beautiful!

"He leadeth me beside still restoreth my soul".Isn't that so true???

Good painting all!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Journaling With Paint

Though I'm not exactly sure that "journaling" is a correct verb...or even a word for that matter. It really doesn't matter. I do feel that "my" term "journaling" with paint accurately describes my intentions whenever I paint. Each painting records a specific place and time... and furthermore, even mood...or my state of mind at the time. Over the course of my lifetime I have painted several thousand paintings and filled numerous sketchbooks which when laid side-by-side...would record a very substantial part of my time and interests. On many canvases in the past I have also included written expressions in the form of verse, prose and poetry...or simply a thought. I have collected these on napkins, show programmes, in sketchbooks and on my computer...but with no attention to arranging them, or creating any substance.

Having thought about this for some time, I decided a month ago to attempt a book that gathered together both the written and the painted expressions. After some initial struggling, I did manage to put together what I feel is at least a representative overview of these two separate but related activities. "Two Voices"- Paintings With Poetry was what emerged from this project.I felt a great sense of accomplishment in having completed the task and now have a record for my children, family members, loyal friends and collectors...all of whom have encouraged my passionate journey.I would offer it as an idea for any artist...if simply to look at your own art and to place it under your own view motives and contribute to your own artistic growth and development. Say what?
Good painting!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Back From a Foray to Algonquin Park

Despite fighting the rain throughout the entire three days, it was a rewarding trip. I managed to come home with three pretty good paintings doine entirely on location...thanks to the copious canopy cover of stands of black spruce that proliferate this beautiful and pristeen wilderness area.
My wife Deb and I were invited to visit by our good friends David and Diane Kay in Whitney located at the East Gate entrance to the Park. Together they operate a motel business called the East Gate Motel there. David is a very fine artist who knows the area like the back of his hand. His gallery of fine art at the motel attests to this intimate relationaship and his capability as an artist.
The horse flies and mosquitoes which frequent the Park in July were VERY active...and distracting to say the very least. We did find several sites which offered wind and some relief from their incessant badgering. The Park is very green in this summer season...but I love the challenge of playing with pigment to unravel the slight differences between greens. One has to study the scene before them very carefully ...before adding paint. The old adage: Look twice... paint once...forms the best startegy for success in this undertaking. One has to watch carefully that they don't let the bravado that many outdoor artists demonstrate when working outdoors. Not strangely to me, these same artists forsake summer because of the "green monsters"...and in so my own humble opinion miss an opportunity to discover the joy of accomplishment of being out there...surrounded by the vitality of Nature at her height. Just my thought however!
Here are a couple of the "sketches" completed entirely on location. Judge for yourself if the exercise is achievable...or worthy of time and effort. I'd be interested in your comments!
Good (summer) painting!....wherever you are!