Sunday, September 26, 2010

September 26, 2010

A good night. For the artists out there, I just had to change batteries in the Might Bright LED book light tonight, the first time since beginning this project 26 days ago! The light still wasn't out, but was dimming. That's pretty impressive. Twenty six sessions of about 2.5 hours...65 hours of light!!! That's amazing to me because the other light I used with the color balanced fluorescent bulb would use 4 batteries about every 2 or 3 hours.

I was in the Interstate Park for the first one. I have a question... Is there a school out there that teaches the two questions that almost everyone who walks up behind me asks?

1- "Are you an artist, are you painting?"... Easel is up, brushes in my hand, paint all over the palette, paint brush with paint is on the canvas...
2-Remember, they're behind me looking at my painting and what I'm painting... "What are you painting?"

Tonight the last people in the park, besides me, were rock climbers. A young lady clinging and clanging from all of the climbing gear hanging from her body came up and asked me both questions. To answer her first one I said "Yes...Are you a climber?" She stretches out a big grin and says "Why yes I am!".

To answer the second question, I just pointed out in front of me.
Either I'm not doing a very good job, one that she can recognize, or she took the course... I just don't know!!!

Just to let you know how this is affecting me... I see nothing odd anymore about sitting outside in my plastic Adirondack chair with a beverage in hand, in the pitch black, no fire in the pit, frost or very cold moisture on the chair, with about 4 layers of clothes and a pair of gloves on... and watching life go by my back yard as if it were 3:00 in the afternoon on a nice warm Saturday in July!!!

9/26-1 'Twilight In The Park'
There was some beautiful color happening in that canyon last night when the sun finally went below the western horizon. The canyon gets dark early, but then it bounces color around for quite a while after sunset. The palette tonight was gorgeous with magentas, ceruleans, mossy greens, and grayer versions of all of that. What a treat!

9/26-2 'Moon Beam'
I walked across to the north side of Hwy 8, across the road from the park, and set up to paint the moon rising over the hills of the Wisconsin side of the St Croix. This view is looking up towards the St Croix Falls power dam that I painte earlier in September. The orange/red glow to the left center are the lights from the dam. I checked the charts and knew that the moon would be rising about 8:18. What I didn't think about is that down in the river canyon the rise wouldn't pop over the top of the bluffs then, not until about 9:10 did it show up. Well it was worth the wait. Nice calm, fairly warm night to sit and watch stars until it was time to paint.


Unknown said...

Your paintings are fantastic and worth all the effort you put into them. The question I get most often is "How long did that take you?" My response: "58 years."

Brad said...

'Are you blogging?'

A few days ago I was painting in a rather isolated park but people still seemed to find me and go out of their way to ask, 'are you painting?' I must agree with you, what is that? I don't regularly get asked, 'are you driving?', 'are you eating?' etc. I guess I do get the occasional 'are you sleeping'... Not anymore.

I suppose it's not a common activity and people that do it seem a little odd. i.e. you sitting in that lawn chair in the dark. I'm enjoying your work.

Kathy, good answer. Very true.

Mitzi Rothman said...

I like the moon glow and reflections in "Moon Beam"

Jean Spitzer said...

I don't usually paint outdoors. The first time I did, this guy watched me for a long time, then told me I should have painted the sky before painting the tree.

LandPainter said...

Oh yes, I hate the comment about "What are you painting?" They obviously see where the easel is pointed and the subject on the canvas. Like you said, either I'm not doing a good job (which is very demoralizing) or they are just trying to act interested. I don't know...

Another night of beautiful painting! Never mind what the pedestrians say, you are doing fantastic work!

Christopher O'Handley said...

My aunt (mother, sister, father, uncle...) paints!

Christopher O'Handley said...

Nice hobby! That must be relaxing...

Daroo said...

Amazing variety for one night -- I especially like the halation on the horizon of "Moonbeam"

On Scott Burdick's site he has a photo of Tom Browning painting, while wearing a shirt with "preemptive" answers to the most asked questions printed on the back.
Examples (from my memory):
"These are oil paints."
" Yes, its for sale"
" I'm sure your aunt's paintings are lovely..."

Mary said...

I'm going to be sorry when this theme ends. I really enjoy both the paintings and your writing.

To answer your questions, there must be a school because I get the same comments in Oregon - but we have a third question. As a single woman, I believe in safety in numbers and when I'm with a friend or two, they ask if it's a class. Again, demoralizing.

Steve Froelich said...

Top Ten Answer's to Marc's Question "Are you an artist?"

1. I am captain of the paint dart team
2. I am a Shaolin Monk, I am sparring with the canvas
3. I am a cave painter with modern tools
4. I am a picture seller, artists have a hard time making the mortgage payment
5. I am a prude, forever covering nude canvas
6. I am a starving coffee shop employee trying to make ends meet
7. I have paint Tourette’s
8. I am a color chef working on a new recipe
9. I am on work release, the prison sells my work in their gift shop.
10. I am a minimalist, I take all of God’s wonder and reduce it to this mere canvas

Tim said...

Here is a shirt for you all. I might not wear it though, since as Jim Wilcox says, "some of those questioners become customers"

But its the equivalent of going up to a street musician and asking "Are you playing the guitar?" and "What are you playing" in the middle of a song.

Marc R. Hanson said...

Thank you all. These questions are good 'shop talk' but I sort of agree that it's best kept to the shop! ;-)

This young lady had a sense of humor, I could see it in her expression and hear it in her voice. So when I came back at her, she really played along. I also talked to her quite a bit more about painting, outside of the couple of things I mentioned and thought funny.

I've met some amazingly friendly and genuinely interested but seriously informationally challenged people while painting. They really don't know what it is we do out there, why we do it, or how and it's a mystery to them.

Because of that, while I find it humorous, and we talk about it back and forth, the best PR we can get is to give them as much info as time permits. If they go on and on, and don't have that respect for the fact that you're under a time constraint, or are interfering with the concentration, then I just politely tell them that I need to concentrate on the painting and thank them for stopping and being interested.

The shirts are funny, and Steve came up with some good 'Top Ten' answers, I wouldn't wear one of he shirts either. It's a slap in the face to some. I've noticed that the people who are the most interested are the most sincere and respectful of what we're doing. They're like Artists, they have a sensitivity and would probably never come up to ask a question if they saw a shirt on my back that said that.

Might not only miss a possible customer, but might turn off a possible budding artist.