Here’s more schnauzer practice (referring to my last blog post here) – this one is bigger (15 x 11 inches) and is more like the client’s dog I’m to feature in my fine art commission (via Caplan Art Designs). The commission is being done in color, using my cut handmade paper collage method, but I gotta get the shapes right first. So I’ve been practicing… https://sueclancy.com/2017/03/08/the-art-of-practice-and-a-story-inside/
As you know I’ve been doing “coffee/tea cup research” lately. Here is a recent fine artwork I just finished titled “Café Paix”. Paix is French for “peace”. I’m sure you’ll notice the cup.
One day my sweetie and I were on a busy urban street and we ducked into a café for a late brunch. There I was enchanted by the variety of people in the café – as well as outside on the street – and I thought “How wonderful it is to live in a such cosmopolitan region!
In my head I used the word “cosmopolitan” in the sense of “at ease with many different cultures”. That dovetailed with the café menu (in front of me) which featured coffee drinks and foods from many different areas of the world. So I made notes in my pocket sketchbook.
Later when I was back at the studio I did this finished sketch – which was a preliminary study for “Café Paix”:
The sketch is currently at Caplan Art Designs www.caplanartdesigns.com and “Café Paix” will be there too for future exhibits after it has fully dried.
Spent a self indulgent morning drinking Irish coffee and reading newspapers, magazines and books – and discussing what I read with my sweetie. Life doesn’t get better that that! I also collected the dishes. Meaning that I went through my various sketchbooks and collected drawings I’d done of coffee cups. Drawings I’d done when we went to various coffee shops or happy hours and had coffee drinks. In my fine artwork I often depict my dogs or cats drinking coffee or tea – so I thought it’d be good to have a collection of “dishes” all in one place to pull from when it’s time to make fine art.
Here’s one page of my coffee cup collection. There are many more pages filled with cups … but one page will give you the idea.
Here below is a “raw” sketchbook page from which I collected one of the coffee cup shapes that was collected into one of my other “all cups together” sketchbook pages – but the above cups came from “raw” sketchbook pages too. I say “raw” pages because these small sketchbooks fit in my pocket and are drawn on the fly as life happens. I’ll refine them or re-draw them later.
Living here in the Pacific Northwest I’ve been fascinated with the variety of coffee drinks available as well as the kinds of cups the drinks are served in. Did you know that there are some 44 different coffee drink types? I didn’t until I started noticing. I’ve not tried them all yet but I have learned to ask my barista questions. Learned a lot that way! And of course while I’m drawing in my sketchbook I write down the recipes as told to me – and then, if I try to make it at home I’ll note in my sketchbook my favorite mix. I think of it as part of my on-going “know thyself” self-education program. The recipes make their way into my fine art too – just less obviously. Here’s my favorite recipe for Irish Coffee.
If you have ever enjoyed a margarita – or as I’ve recently discovered – a Mexican coffee remember to thank a bat. The lesser long nosed bat, yes the night flying critter, is very important to the pollination of plants that produce tequila. This bat’s health affects human culture and humans affect the bat. Fortunately the lesser long nosed bat has been removed from the endangered species list recently because lots of humans returned the bat’s favors and helped the bat’s habitat etc.
All of this goes to my on-going thesis that we humans are interconnected with the world. It only seems like human culture is separate from the natural world. Just like sometimes it feels like we are alone as individuals. But the way I figure it even when I’m physically alone in a room there are thousands of humans with me; several people made my furniture, some made my window blinds, others make the inks, brushes and all the art supplies I use. The books that fill my studio and home were written, edited, published and distributed by lots of humans. And I’m grateful to them.
Then I back up a notch and there are mammals, insects, plants as well as water, air and sunlight that also contributed to the materials all the humans used to make everything in my life. And I’m even more grateful.
Which brings me to the dogs. For me dogs represent a “joy at being alive” and dogs are very much a part of our human world. For me they are a direct link to the natural world – they are our “interpreters”, our therapy guide dogs, that help us remember our humanity. You know, enjoy your food, sleep well, be sociable, be kind, go for walks and play like you mean it.
I also enjoy the diversity of the dog-world. The smallest dog and the biggest dog, the hairy dog and the smooth-coated dog are all able to co-exist peaceably (most of the time) in the same dog park. Good examples for the humans I think.
It takes all of us – every being – to create our world. Sort of like a drink recipe, leave out one item and you don’t have the same drink. As Dr. Bob Hoke often quoted “We bring forth the world together”
So for many of the above reasons I depict dogs doing human culture-like things such as having a Mexican coffee.
And here is one of the best Mexican coffee recipe’s I’ve found so far.
I never knew there were so many coffee-drinks until I moved to the Pacific Northwest. Lately I’ve been “collecting” such drinks in my sketchbook (like the above recipe) as well as many different shapes of mugs and cups. All of this research is ending up in my fine artwork… I’ll share more about this in another post.
Do you have a favorite dog? Or favorite coffee drink?
In the meantime you can see more of my dog portrait artwork in my new book “Dogs by Sue Clancy” https://store.bookbaby.com/book/Dogs-By-Sue-Clancy or at one of my art galleries: Caplan Art Designs www.caplanartdesigns.com For more of the “Dr. Bob Hoke” I spoke of earlier see also my artist book Dr. Bob’s Emotional Repair Program First Aid Kit https://store.bookbaby.com/book/dr-bobs-emotional-repair-program-first-aid-kit
My artist book “Coffee Beans Plus H2o” is featured at the Abecedarian Gallery in Colorado! I’ve loved it that the gallery owner and some other artist’s who’ve commented privately have “gotten it” that in this book I was playing with a concept of time! I’d worried about whether that was getting across so I can’t tell you how much it feeds my artist soul to hear supportive “I understand this” comments from people – and from people in the book-arts-field too! Wahoo!! I’m happy dancing around my art studio today!! Thank you thank you everyone!!!
Check out the gallery website here: http://abecedariangallery.com/store/product-category/new-and-featured-inventory/ – scroll down where they list the “new and featured inventory” – and lookee there’s my work among some other really awesome book-arts work! Wow! Pinch me – am I dreaming? Look at the other artist’s work – Wow impressive!
And here’s the specific gallery page about my book: http://abecedariangallery.com/store/shop/sue-clancy-coffee-beans-plus-h20/
You can also find additional info about this book on my YouTube channel here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCTz7Wzr-bj2RbePAsbrHmLw
Here’s a self-portrait I did this morning. (Aka: more short visual story/narrative practice.)
I’ve new gallery representation for my artist books. The Abecedarian Gallery in Denver Colorado! http://www.abecedariangallery.com/ Here is a video of Coffee Beans Plus H2o which is at the gallery now. Now I’ll go make more artist books since I’ve another gallery to “feed”! Wahoo!!!
I’ve been working on new fine art and as I’d mentioned in my last blog post it’s been unusually hot here in WA so things are taking longer to dry. So rather than do anything constructive like sort out my sock drawer I went and did some sketches in a local Vancouver park. The park, Esther Short Park, has an area within it called Propstra Square. This park has been called “Vancouver’s living room”. And it is! This is one of the many things I love about living here! Here’s a link for official details about the park http://www.cityofvancouver.us/parksrec/page/esther-short-park-0
When I was there wandering around sketching it seemed that if seen from above the brickwork in Propstra Square would have a plaid or window-pane check pattern. So I sketched the square itself and several “closeup” looks at the brickwork pattern – and got all artistically inspired: wouldn’t it be fun if someone could “wear the square”? My imagination started firing on all pattern design cylinders.
Here’s a photo, taken at my studio, of my sketchbook and to the left in the photo is a tile I created in prep for doing some new apparel designs. The tile is a collage made with my cut handmade, hand dyed papers, and a bit of color pencil and watercolors.
When the tile was finished I photographed it and uploaded it to my Art Director at VIDA. Some computer magic happened somewhere in San Francisco and – Abracadabra – here below is a photo of one of my apparel designs – I trust you can see the relationship between my sketchbook scribble above and the scarf below? If not, please get another cup of coffee and look again. I’ll wait.
If your coffee kicks you into super high gear (Where do you get that super strong coffee stuff? Do tell!) and you just gotta see more of my pattern design apparel work – you can see more at this link: http://shopvida.com/collections/sue-clancy
As readers of my blog know I’m working on a pop-up book titled “A Fish Story”. Eventually (when the book is finished) I’ll submit it to the 23 Sandy Gallery – the gallery owner has asked for videos of our pop-up books because of the active movable parts – a juror needs to see it in…action. So I thought I’d better practice the whole “do a video of an artist book thing”. Here is a link to a youtube video of one my artist books titled “Coffee Beans Plus H2o” – used as a practice baby-step. Fair warning: there will be more practice “video-a-book” attempts in the future. Deep breath…here goes…
I’ve been updating my Artist Book page on my website so that there is a link to my book “Coffee Please” (so you can flip through it) in the 23 Sandy Gallery Wanderlust exhibit catalog. That exhibit opens tonight!
And I’ve posted on that same Artist Book page another of my artist books – in a way you can look through it too. Scroll down on the page to find it. It’s titled “Metamorphosis”. Here’s a teaser image:
Happy reading! And just in case you have trouble with the link for my Artist Book page here it is spelled out: https://sueclancy.com/artist-books/