The Gifts...

#work in progress 12"H x 24,oils on canvas by H.Harris

I'm late this morning in writing this blog. My most recent painting was just too tantalizing to leave on the easel untouched in the early morning hours. A fragment of color here & there, the wispiness in a cloud  ... it was just too tempting and the blog could wait.
If you've been following my journey in my past blogs, this brings me to the fourth stage of my painting progression into other mediums... oils. 
I had resisted oils for many years. I always found a reason not to use them . They were toxic, messy and took too long to dry. I'm a prolific painter and had always had a full schedule of art shows to prepare in short time frames. Oils were just too needy....but then as before, it happened ...what if?

 I experienced 3 separate incidents that were gifts that changed everything about my work.
First, an impromptu  visit to a tiny gallery/studio in Lambertville, NJ where I caught a glimpse of color like no other that fired my imagination and sent me in pursuit of its illusive light.

Second, a casual conversation with artist, Michelle Soslau. The subject of our discussion was painting  in acrylic versus oils. Her thoughts on acrylic absorbing light and oils reflecting it was one of those "but of course, ah-ha moments!"  that clarified my need to head in a different direction.

Third, was simply serendipitous, when my friend, Jude Decker, gave me a gift of water mixable oils as I was about to move to a new home. I was hooked ...my learning curve of two years was now not a time of frustration but a welcome time to playfully explore my skills . As each painting comes off my easel I am feeling more and more excited about the changes that I see happening. Water mixable oils eliminated my excuses of toxicity, and was an easy clean up. I did, however, need to learn patience in handling the drying times of dealing with oils. With this change of medium I was able to bring together my drawing studies, my need to show textures was achieved in my layered brush strokes and palette knife work. My search for light in paint is getting there. I had been content for some time with watermedia work whether it was watercolors, mixed media or acrylic but you never know what influences will affect your work ...just be open to them and then go for it!

 I deeply appreciate my art collectors that have followed me and supported all of these risky moves as I have grown to become the artist that I am.

helenharrispaintings.com


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