Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Flower Islands

Original oil painting  18x14"
by Susan Roux

I made the last of my deliveries yesterday. Three sets of art to three different galleries. The day was picture perfect for a coastal delivery. The three hour drive to Blue Hill takes me through winding country roads eventually connecting north on Route 1. For those of you not familiar with this route, it begins in Florida and follows the coast all the way up to Maine. It's a lovely drive during off season, but can be a traffic nightmare at tourist time. Quaint shops with interesting names and creative signs stimulate my artistic juices. Even without stopping, reading the names and seeing original looking store fronts sends my mind dreaming. Interspersed are glimpses of the ocean always with islands jutting out and keeping the seascape interesting. I didn't think I'd be doing much plein air this year, but yesterday's drive awoke the desire.

I stopped at a roadside garden shop. Color was overflowing! Did you know I have Monet syndrome? Not only do I love painting flowers, I keep creating more and more gardens around the house! I've been mixing annuals with perennials and the changing color show throughout the summer is the perfect haven for an artist to relax in. My burst of work is in the spring and with summer-like weather, planting is earlier than usual. There's a great rush of anticipation as I design my gardens. Like adding color to a canvas, I imagine which plants will be blooming together. It's like painting blindly. As the shapes grow, shadows are created and with it possibilities for wonderful compositions!

I bought a few colorful annuals to place in unusual planters. I've been designing a new outdoor seating area with a great view of sunset. All my flower beds have curves, most being ameba shaped. I don't like straight edges in my landscape. I'm finding the negative space (lawn) as interesting and important as the flower beds themselves. When I think of the various shapes I've established, I'm reminded of all the islands making Maine's waterfront so spectacular. As you drive by, one island seems to be moving in front of another. It makes those rock hard planters covered in evergreens come to life! And so it is with my island flower beds. As you walk around, the flowers from one bed seem to move in front of another. I've always been attracted to that illusion of motion. I find it interesting that without consciously thinking about it, it's how I've designed my surroundings. 

Everything is a composition. Colors, shadows and splashes of light. Whether painting or planting the journey is similar and the passion is present.

Do you have Monet syndrome too? Have you created flower islands? As an artist, where do you go to unwind?

Note: Foxglove was a little corner garden on Deer Isle. I painted it with one of my classes. It was included in the body of work I delivered to Blue Hill Bay Gallery. If you come to Maine this summer, it's a beautiful artsy coastal town to visit, only 30 minutes south of Bar Harbor. Do stop in and say hi to Peter.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Susan Roux Workshop 2012

Original oil painting  18x24"
by Susan Roux

I'll be teaching an oil painting workshop in August and would love it if you'd join us in three days of fun with color! The focus of the workshop will be on Color and Value and it's purpose with regards to design.

It will be three days packed with exploring color. Come stimulate yourself as we dive fearlessly into luscious color! Learn to add excitement to your paintings while remaining in control. 

Do you fear color? Are you having trouble with color harmony when using too many? Are you limiting yourself for fear of not achieving harmony otherwise? How about neutralizing? Is making mud a problem? 

Then this workshop is for you!

I'll be explaining many properties of color to help you understand it, thus help you keep it in control. 

Free yourself by allowing your inner creativity to unleash on canvas. Learn to add visual excitement to your work. Let your paintbrush dance on the canvas. Don't be so preoccupied about staying within the lines and achieving harmony will become an ease. 

I'll encourage you to apply paint in various ways to help you expand your choices of brushstrokes. We'll be working wet into wet. As the paint gets thicker on the canvas, we can begin to push and pull paint around. Drag your brush, twist your brush, just let it dance on the canvas! Free your spirited energy to just pour out.

Depending how tight or loose you want to keep your paintings, I'll show you how to bring this burst of color into shape. Color and value work together to create the illusion of light, depth and form. As a unit, they can help direct the viewers eye around the canvas, adding power to the overall design. 

This workshop is intended for all levels. 

Come to Maine during the dog days of summer and deepen your understanding of color!

Hope to see you soon...

For further information click here.

Note: You may remember seeing the distance in this painting. It was posted in February before the entire painting was complete. This painting is at Blue Hill Bay Gallery in Blue Hill, Maine. For purchasing information, please contact Peter. 

Monday, May 7, 2012

This new morning

June Blossoms
Original oil painting  24x18"
by Susan Roux

I've been juggling painting time with outdoor gardening time. You know what that's like, right? It seems every year I establish a new flower-bed or revamp an old one. This year is no exception.

Maine has had plenty of rain recently. Just as the weather warmed nicely to do the outside work, it also  gave way to too many soggy dreary days. Bring on the sun and the perennial gardens come to life! It doesn't matter that I'm knee-deep in framing and trying to deliver to my galleries; when the sun finally shows it's lovely face, I need to go dig in the dirt!

I was suppose to deliver to The Wright Gallery today but I changed it to tomorrow. Rain is predicted then, once again. Usually I try not to deliver in the rain, but I need to take full advantage of the sunny days. I tackled a rather large project outside and once you begin to lift plants, it's kind of necessary to place them in soil again soon.

I love the seasons and the feeling you get as a new one announces itself. Spring, summer, fall. They're all such nice ones to revisit. Winter and mud season are never my favorites, but necessary to experience the wonderful charge that comes with spring! It feels like a new morning...

Which brings me to the title of this post and the title of Luka Bloom's new CD. Have you downloaded it to your library of tunes yet? For those of you who aren't acquainted with his music, let me tell you a little secret. Luka should market himself to artists. Listening to one or two songs won't do it, but play a long session of his music while painting and it's like magic! I've tried it on lots and lots of artists. Everyone has the same reaction, that it's perfect to paint to, except Kevin. But I blame his ancient player and bad speaker system. You see he likes to listen to the sixties and seventies stuff and his system is from the same era...

You can't expect to hear today's songs on yesterday's equipment. It's like trying to watch an HD movie on a fifties black and white TV! Doesn't work.

So because of that, I don't count Kevin's experience as a real negative. Plus he always tries to give me a hard time anyway...

Back to Luka. His words are always uplifting. His melodies are soothing and they're conducive to swaying. Both making your body and paintbrush sway. He also falls into short bouts of chanting which put you into a wonderful trance. You know what I mean, that great Painting Zone... Don't you just love getting there?

I've become so accustomed to painting solely to his music, that now instantly upon hearing it I want to slip off into that zone. It's has such a relaxing quality. It calms the spirit and allows you to focus and fall deep into your art. If you get the opportunity to see him in person, do yourself a favor and go. His show is worth the small fee it will cost  you. Plus Luka's pretty funny!

This New Morning!    

It could be your new art friend. 

I wanted to thank everyone who voted for me. It seems I've surpassed the required 77 votes needed to get to Time Square! I just love new experiences!

Note: June Blossoms is a scene from Monhegan Island. You can see part of the Island Inn in the distance, enveloped in costal fog. It will soon be delivered to Blue Hill Bay Gallery. Peter will be happy to help you if you'd like to purchase it.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Art Takes Time Square

Original oil painting  16x12"
by Susan Roux

I suspect by now many of you have heard about Art Takes Time Square. It'll be an exhibition via the big screens in Times Square. Imagine your art popping up for thousands of people to see. The rules for this exhibition are rather unique and because of that, I need your help.

Artists have set up their own page. This includes your artist photo, a statement and up to 9 images of your work. At the top of each page are three icon links. One is for Info, the second is Collect Me and the third a Share button. Each artists must collect votes through the Collect Me button. An artist needs a total of at least 77 votes to be part of the exhibition. I currently have 61 votes. 

Please click to get to my page where you can then click the "Collect Me" button. I'm just 16 votes away from being part of this unusual exhibition! Your vote counts and could help me visualize this big event.

The site is through Facebook, so you'll be asked to sign onto your Facebook account. 

I thank you for your time and your vote!

I'm not sure if the exhibition is still taking new artists, but do check and let me know if I can help  you by giving you my vote! Good Luck to all.

Note: Buttercups is at The Wright Gallery if your interested in purchasing. Charlie will take very good care of you!