I’ve been having a blast playing at being a North Pole elf, designing gifts for my upcoming pop-up shop at Vintage Books https://www.vintage-books.net/ Dec 7th from noon to 4pm! The Pacific Northwest social scene has been inspiring and guiding my thoughts.
Here in Vancouver all year long people get together regularly for happy hours, for pot-luck dinners and other social occasions. I love it! Then come October through to the new year there are parties, parties and parties!!! There are cookie parties, apple parties, wine parties, beer parties, cocktail parties, salad parties, game-night parties, pot-luck dinner parties…. and, of course, holiday stocking stuffer parties.
So as I’ve designed my products for the pop-up shop I’ve kept in mind the various stocking stuffer parties we’ve attended – as well as the local trend of giving handmade items and/or small-in-cost-and-size unique gifts to friends and family.
Anyway, I have very much enjoyed designing whimsical gifts thinking of my local friends, family and fans. I’m delighted that my local bookstore, Vintage Books, has asked me to do this pop-up shop and I’m also planning a performance-art aspect to the event – i.e. I’m going to do some “live drawing” pet portraits…. but more on that in another post.
Here’s a stocking with some of the stuff I’ve designed in it.
Typically I paint food and drinks from my memory and imagination. Sort of. I take my sketchbook along and draw from life what I’m eating or drinking. But when I get paints out in my studio to do a “real” fine art piece I’m winging it from my sketchbook-aided memories of the food flavors and presentation. Recently I’ve done something different.
I’ve been working from “live” models in my studio. Here are my models as they came from the store:
Clancy’s art studio “models”.
You see, I’ve been thinking of that moment during a nice dinner out, when the waiter brings you some after dinner mints, and you sit with your friends munching them and gentling into the rest of the evening. But I can eat mints pretty quickly. (Mint is one of my favorite flavors) And in such a situation I’m usually focused on the conversation. So have I ever really looked at a mint? I mean really looked?
I bought some mint candies as art models for the serious artistic meditation thereof. And while I did look at (and eat) them I still ended up somewhat “winging it” when creating these paintings:
“Into The Andes” by Clancy – 5 x 7 inches – acrylic and gouache on board
“I Really Mint It” by Clancy – 7 x 5 inches – acrylic and gouache on board
“Pillow Talk” by Clancy – 7 x 5 inches – acrylic and gouache on board
I think as paintings they worked out okay. While I tried some different colors (the purple, the teal and the orange) I feel I conveyed the minty goodness of the candies. I also think I managed to imply a story in each of them, at least an implication of people eating the mints.
At any rate I have really looked a mint now. Really looked.
Kurt Vonnegut once said “Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted” and I’ve taken those words to heart. I even have Vonnegut’s statement pinned to the wall above my art studio work table. I believe that my creative out-put is not about me. Art-making is not some self-indulgent ego-trip on my part. It’s about the kind of world we are creating together; me and all my friends, pre-friends and strangers. We are all in this together.
Which is why, even after all these years of being a professional artist, I still have mixed feelings when I see PR stuff with my name prominently as the “featured artist”. On the one hand a one-person fine art exhibit is a culmination of at least a years worth of daily work on my part – so I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished. Yet at the same time I’m very aware that while it may be my name on the marquee, so to speak, there’s a whole host of people behind me, believing in my artwork, working hard to make the event successful; the gallery owner, the gallery director, the interns and assistants in the gallery to name the obvious ones. When the opening reception (as it is for my October exhibit) is also a 3 course dinner with wine pairings – there is also the restaurant (Daily in the Pearl!), the chef, the winery (Hip Chicks Do Wine!) – all working hard too. And I didn’t mention the art supply stores in my beloved Pacific Northwest that provide materials for me to work with… or my spouse, friends, neighbors…. I’ve so many people to be grateful for that I’m not sure the Internet has enough bandwidth to hold my entire list.
So let it suffice to say that while my name may be the most prominent in the PR materials being circulated currently – like this email flyer (below) that the Caplan Art Designs gallery sent out – as well as all the other stuff on Facebook and Twitter etc. This whole exhibit is really about an overall aesthetic experience we’re creating together; my artwork is just the focal point. Still I have endeavored to use the time of my gallery owners, friends, supporters and strangers as respectfully as I know how… and now I’m riding the PR train, doing my best to support my supporters efforts, prepping for the next stop; the night of the opening. And all the while remembering; It’s not about me, it’s not about me, it’s not about me… choo chooo!!!!
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Saturday, October 1st @6:30
Wine pairings by Hip Chicks Do Wine and a special three course dinner.
Featured artist, Sue Clancy will be raffling a modal scarf with one of her design pattern used in her work.
Finished a new art piece destined for the Caplan Art Designs gallery one-person exhibit I’ll be having in October! The opening party will be a 3 course wine dinner party at The Daily in The Pearl. You can get more info about that on the Caplan Art Designs events page – look at “Cooks, Corks and Co-conspirators”. Yep, I’d be a considered a co-conspirator. Anyway, here’s the info about this newbie art piece:
U-Pick Book Farm
By Sue Clancy
12 x 9 x 1.5 inches
Hand dyed paper, handmade paste paper, hand woven paper, found paper, acrylic on cradled board
And, if you missed my prior blog post where I told and showed about this artwork in progress here’s a bit about my thinking behind it:
U-Pick Book Farm by Sue Clancy
Combining the concepts of local u-pick fruit and vegetable farms with local libraries that have baskets for a patron’s book harvest and adding the burrowing, digging instinct of a dachshund.
U-Pick Book Farm By Sue Clancy 12 x 9 x 1.5 inches Hand dyed paper, handmade paste paper, hand woven paper, found paper, acrylic on cradled board
Amy Caplan from Caplan Art Designs www.caplanartdesigns.com has installed my artwork at The Daily In The Pearl http://dailyinthepearl.com/events.html for an exhibit running the month of October! The theme I’ve been creating art towards (for over a year) is “Paws to Enjoy”. This installation is a well curated collection of all of the little moments I’ve paused (ahem) to enjoy! And I’m sure you can imagine why my art theme has been paired with a fine restaurant and why the exhibit opening is a 3 course dinner and wine event.
As seen in a previous blog post here’s the exhibit statement aka “blurb”:
Paws to Enjoy
Life happens and Sue’s response is to pause and think about it by cutting up one-of-a-kind hand dyed papers, smearing glue on them and putting the cut paper pieces together again. She thinks about dogs, cats, and rabbits and soup, coffee, and whiskey. Then she sums up her thoughts and transforms them into literary images. This exhibit is a collection of enjoyable thoughts.
Here are a few pages lifted from my newest eBook titled “Coffee, Table, Book” http://my.bookbaby.com/book/coffee-table-book
Cheezus Loves Us