Everything Undone, Nothing Finished

Portrait of Honey

Those of you who have been with me more than a year will remember Honey.  Many still ask me how Honey is doing.  There was a crisis involving her eyesight back in–2009?  Maybe 2010.  (I have completely lost it as far as judging time is concerned. )  Anyway, Honey needed eye surgery to remove a growth on her cornea, and we had to raise $3,000 to pay for it.  I held yard sales.  Many people donated items to the yard sales, and many people just donated money.  My granddaughter used the bulk of the money she gets to help her get through college.  Honey got her surgery and seemed happier for it.   I  went out and bought pet insurance for all four of the animals that live with me and said granddaughter.

Last night the insurance paid off.  Honey again.  Something called “bloat” happened to her in the middle of the night.  I guess it’s called bloat because her belly seems to swell up, but what is really happening is her stomach gets twisted around.  She needed surgery as soon as possible.  Tabitha, my granddaughter, had read up on the health problems that beset Great Danes, so she recognized the problem immediately.  Honey had surgery at midnight and  by two a.m. had come out of it in fine shape.  Thank you, American Express!  What a comfort it was to know the bills will be covered by our insurance–mostly–eventually.

I don’t have a decent segue from Honey’s story to this week’s topic, so I’ll just forge ahead without one.  I’m feeling a little down in the dumps.  Why?  Let me count the ways:  (1) The week contained both my last class with Cameron and our last SLG of the year.  (2) Cameron is moving to England.  (3) I tried to paint another large portrait and a  large figure study and failed to get either done in the time allotted.  (4) I tried to come up with something to submit for the annual “Flowers Interpreted” exhibit of the Womens Caucus for Art, and produced a painting very close to what I had intended but now think the whole idea was just dumb.

Our last meeting of the SLG (Saturday Life Group) until the fall was remarkable in that we had two of our favorite models posing together.  Since they are a couple, they could touch each other, support each other.  If we get to do this again in the future, we might come up with more interesting gestures than the ones we got, but it rocked anyway.  Here are my efforts:

10 minutes with 2 models

20 minutes with two models

SLG two models

For my class in contemporary portraits, I tried to outdo myself on the same large size panel (16×20), with a head even larger than last week’s.

Jonathan's Head v 2

At the end of the class, we voted on which of my Big Heads was better.

Jonathan's head v. 1

Big Head No. 1 won.  So No. 2 is not finished.  No. 1 may not be entirely done either, but I am not touching it.  No. 2 even has white canvas showing.  Should I finish it, or should I wipe the whole thing out?  I’m thinking it was just an experiment, I don’t need it anymore, and I could use the canvas for a new experiment.

Sunday morning at Adrienne’s, we were back with The Pose.  Four weeks with The Pose, four paintings for me.  I had been closing in on her from week 1 to week 3, but couldn’t get any closer this week unless I wanted to do a huge portrait of an eye.  Interesting idea, but I was not in the mood.  So I moved to a different point of view and got out another 16×20 panel.

Girl in Recliner No. 4

The colors are a disappointment.  I also intend to work on the composition around the figure.  I probably shouldn’t beat myself up over the fact that I can’t complete a painting on a 16×20 support in a mere 3 hours.  But knowing that with my left brain doesn’t help because that’s not where the art happens, if it happens at all.

Which brings me to “Flowers Interpreted”.  I have never before been tempted to paint a mythical, allegorical, fairy tale kind of scene, but the deadline loomed for entry into this exhibit, which I had taken part in for the past two years, so it’s a habit, a tradition already, and this image just popped into my head.

Iris Interpreted

It’s an iris with a brown fairy, I guess.  My first version of the fairy had harder edges;  I decided that smeared edges would make her more of a piece with the flower petals.  The fairy image might look familiar.  About a month ago it was a drawing done in Peter Granucci’s workshop.   I just hope it doesn’t get censored from the exhibit because of the nominal nudity.  Fairy nudity shouldn’t count.  Should be treated like cat or dog nudity, right?

Aline Lotter is currently exhibiting:

at the Gallery at the Sage Gallery in Manchester; at the Hatfield Gallery in Manchester; at the Bartlett Inn in Bartlett; at the Library Arts Center in Newport; at the NH Institute of Art in Manchester; and at her studio by appointment.

Link to website: www.paintingsbyaline.com

5 responses to “Everything Undone, Nothing Finished

  1. Agree, I hope the fear of artistic nudes recedes and the censors allow your work in the exhibit. The innocence conveyed to me in this work makes it almost Angelic, the smeared edges work well.

    I hope you get more opportunities with dual models who work well together. The dynamic with two models posing together can be vastly different that with two models posing seperately. The SLG rocks!