Sunday, March 22, 2009

Portals & Pathways at the Mayo Hospital, Clinic

Much of the time when I paint it is to create good strong paintings that will be entered into competitive shows, hang in a gallery for sale, or done for an event or commission. I recently had the chance to paint for an entirely different reason and it was a wonderful experience for me. The series of paintings are called "Pathways & Portals" and they are hanging at the Mayo Hospital in Phoenix. There is no reception, no ads placed, no judging done and no price tags. The sole purpose is for the pleasure of the patients, doctors, Mayo staff and families that work there. The Mayo Clinic and hospitals are some of the top locations in the country that people come to for medical care, they are beautiful well thought out places with the primary concern being the patients comfort. Even with that, when you have an appointment at the Mayo, it is usually because you are seriously sick and are looking for the best care you can find. Most people are nervous, their family members try to act unafraid and that it is no big deal, and each spends a great deal of time waiting. With this in mind I painted this series of pieces, each one with the idea of taking the viewer away for just a moment. Not trying to make a statement, not trying to force you to see my view or shake you up, just pleasure. What totally surprised me was that it actually was a release for me, a pleasure, many moments of having a different motivation when putting the brush to the canvas. I always love to paint, I am challenged by juried shows, it is total joy to do this as my job. But, to paint with the sole purpose of trying to see through the eyes of the viewer , not mine was amazing. I tried some compositions that are very different for me, perspectives that are not in any of my other paintings, I learned so much. Painting for a non-profit, or a piece that you will not get any sale from, is a very good thing to try. Let yourself focus on what the viewer might bring to the canvas, that it is not all about you trying to express yourself- what I cool thing. If you get this sort of opportunity, say yes. No, you won't get your "moneys worth" but you will find a new direction and a wonderful motivation that is much bigger than you.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Desert Wildflowers

Wow what a busy month this has been, it is already spring and the desert is just starting to bloom. My own yard is covered in wildflowers of yellow & gold. If you can go out for a drive the next couple of weeks and see for your self, head up the Hwy 60 towards Superior or down to Picacho Peak to see tons of blooms. This picture is up at Mays Point in the Superior area, taken by Paul Wolterbeek from the Arboretum. Enjoy!