Posted tagged ‘drawing and painting’


November 21, 2017

cocktail-party-_2502341b-11247034466.jpgSuppose you are at a party.   Trying to make small talk, you strike up a conversation with someone you don’t know.  Sooner or later, you are likely to ask the ubiquitous question, What do you do?  If the person replies, I’m a doctor … or even better, I’m a neurosurgeon … you are likely impressed, as well as encouraged that a path for an interesting conversation lies ahead.   If your new acquaintance says, I’m an engineer, not so much on either account.   But what if the answer is, I’m an artist?  How do respond?  With interest or skepticism?  Do you subtly check her out to see if she looks like an artist?  Are you intimidated?  Do you silently wonder, Do you have a real job?  If instead of introducing himself as an artist, your new friend says, I’m a painter, do you automatically assume he paints houses?  Or, if she says she’s a writer, do you ask, Have written any books?  Which means, for sure, Have you published any books?  Do you mumble, I don’t now anything about art, and escape to talk to someone else.  Or do you say, I used to like art but I wasn’t very good at it?  Or, recall that when you began to dabble in drawing, your parents cautioned, You can’t make a living as an artist, you know. (more…)

Monday Smiles – 4/20/2015

April 20, 2015

ART FORThis post has been buzzing in my head for a week or so, and today, it is determined to get onto the page.  If this wasn’t a Monday, the post would be titled, Art for Art’s Sake, not a very original title.  But it works, even if I use it a way different from the meaning intended by the French philosopher, Victor Cousin, when he said L’art pour l’art.  He meant that art needs no justification, that it need serve no political, didactic, or other endI believe that for sure but it’s not what I’m smiling about on this warm Monday morning, when the skies are hazy with smoke from a wildfire several miles down the freeway.

I was raised by a rational Dad and an artistic Mom, and my Dad’s influence has dominated my professional career with my artistic side relegated to hobbies.  If that sounds dismissive, that is an echo of what I felt for much of my life.  I painted in oil and watercolors, drew in pencil and charcoal and pastels, but never considered myself an artist.  I loved writing and even earned a certificate in creative writing in my fifties.  A short story I wrote in one of my classes was published in a minor literary magazine and I actually completed a novel.  But I never felt like a writer.   My upbringing had taught me that you had to make a living at something to earn the title.  Older Eyes – Bud’s Blog was intended to talk about the experience of growing old(er), the positives and the negatives.  Yes, there are positives, like shedding the notion that to be a writer, I have to earn money or have thousands of readers.  Or that to be an artist, I need to sell my paintings.   The fact that I have posted 1702 posts here is adequate evidence that I am a writer, and while I love Likes and Comments, I write for writing’s sake. I post my photographs here and that makes me a photographer, and when I base a drawing on one of my photographs, I am indeed an artist.  I am happier when I create.


If that sounds like much ado about nothing (another stolen title … I do steal from the best), think again.  It is one of the true gifts of having An Older Perspective.  And it makes me smile.  But you don’t have to wait until you are older to do it.


May 7, 2014

closetI have been a closet artist for perhaps twenty years.  No, I don’t paint in the closet … that’s where I store my works, in piles and in artist’s watercolor pads and an occasional left over frame.  Yes, a few paintings have found their way to the walls of my office and several hang in our Little House.  A portrait I did of my three grandkids as a Christmas present hangs in my daughter’s house.  But for the most part, my art is confined to closets.  Occasionally, I feature something here on Older Eyes – Bud’s Blog.  But I was in Micheal’s Arts and Crafts the other day and they were having a two for one sale on frames.  I decided I would start framing some of my work.  The plan is to create a gallery in our front entryway, not so much to show our (millions of) visitors my art but to show myself it deserves a better fate that residing with the printer paper and staples in my office closet.  Here’s a mock-up of a gallery using the first five I’ve framed.

galleryMy art is coming out of the closet … to reappropriate a phrase that these days means other things.

What Is It?

March 12, 2014

Today, I have two choices: miss posting and risk the WordPress Police showing up to reclaim the Postaday 2014 badge from the corner of my home page; or post something quick and easy.  Last week, checking to be sure that I hadn’t already written a post I was considering (I had), I discovered I had 41 Draft posts stored on WordPress.  This morning, I revisited them to see if I one was suitable for today.  Nope.   Mostly abandoned titles and abandoned fragments.  The few with potential were a bit heavy for mid week and not nearly finished.  A while back, I used to post photos and art on Wednesdays, so I leafed through my watercolor tablets and found this:

cosmic forest

You can click on it to see the detail.  Like most of my work, it started as a free form wash, this one in shades of blues and blacks.  The detail is done in India ink and white paint pen, with some watercolor via brush.  So.  What is it?  My engineer friend, Ron, might say, If you don’t know what it is, is it art?   We disagree on such things and not much else.  To answer my own question, though, I think I’ll call it Cosmic Forest. You’re welcome to offer your own title if you’d like.

Winter Leaves

January 16, 2013

Although I can’t specifically remembering her telling me so, I’m sure Autumn was my Mom’s favorite  season.   I also know that Autumn Leaves was one of her favorite songs.  She liked the Roger Williams version known more for its cascading arpeggios than its sentiment.  Me?  When I lived back East, autumn was my favorite season, too, but I wasn’t very fond of Autumn Leaves until I heard Eva Cassidy’s beautiful but melancholy version.


India Ink

December 5, 2012

higgins inkIndia Ink is perhaps the oldest medium for writing, printing and drawing.  It is a simple black ink made from soot (or lampblack) mixed with one or more binding agents such as glue, shellac or gelatin.  It was made in China thousands of years before the birth of Christ in the form of solid sticks that were moistened with water before using.  It may have become known as India Ink because it was imported to Europe via the West Indies or because it was widely used in India for recording important documents.  In the 19th and early 20th centuries, it was the most popular ink for writing and printing in the West but was gradually replaced by more modern inks.   These days, those with Younger Eyes may not even have heard of India Ink unless they are an artist or microbiologist.  The ink is still used to prepare microscope slides, for drawing, especially cartoons and line drawings, and for calligraphy. (more…)

Water Lilies

November 14, 2012

My family moved to East Haven, Connecticut, the summer before I started 4th grade.  Within easy walking distance of our house, there were three small lakes, or ponds.  The closest was Pollywog Pond, which was approximately a mile into the woods behind our house. Pollywog Pond wasn’t much more than a puddle, good for mock naval battles with model ships we’d built or for catching pollywogs in the spring.  If we pedaled our bikes a mile and a half down Bradley Street, then walked them down a short path through the woods, we’d be at Pirot Pond.  Pirot Pond was our local fishing hole … it was only good for sunfish, bluegill and an occasional perch, but it was close and open to the public.  Yes, things were different in 1955.   Ten year old boys were tramping about in the woods by themselves and going off on boys-only fishing expeditions.  Two miles down Bradley Street in the opposite direction from Pirot Pond was the YMCA’s Camp Hubinger, home of Grannis Lake which we called Lake Hubinger.  By joining the YMCA’s Family Camp, we could swim in the lake … and fish for the large-mouthed bass that were plentiful. (more…)

Art by Tomas

September 5, 2012

When I first began participating in the BlogDumps meme, Top Sites Tuesday, Tomas Karkalas was a regular participant.  Regardless of the theme, Tomas would link to one of his digital paintings.  Tomas was born in Lithuania in 1955, and according to his blog, he suffered a severe head trauma which left his with permanent disabilities, which, in his own words, he is learning to live with.   Since English is not Tomas’ primary language, it sometimes takes effort to follow the prose that accompany his digital paintings.  But it never takes effort to appreciate the paintings themselves. (more…)

Who is Jack Goldstein?

August 22, 2012

Last week, while looking for things to do on the half-price ticket website, Goldstar, I found an ad for Jack Goldstein x 10,000 – A Retrospective at the Orange County Museum of Art.   I thought, Who the heck is Jack Goldstein and why does he deserve a retrospective?   And where the heck is the Orange County Museum of Art?   Well, the OCMA, as it’s usually nicknamed, is tucked away on a side street in the hotel district of Newport Beach.  Jack Goldstein is a longer … and sadder … story that we’d learn at the retrospective.   Several of the paintings shown on OCMA website intrigued me, so Muri and I decided to go last Friday. Tickets were $6 on Goldstar but there was a $3 per ticket service fee.  Senior tickets at the OCMA were $10, so we bought them there.  Museums need our dollars more than Goldstar these days. (more…)

What It Is

August 15, 2012

More and more often, I’ve been leaving my Wednesday post … usually on art or writing … for Wednesday morning, something I rarely did in my first two years of blogging.   Am I becoming more relaxed about the whole thing … or a little burned out after posting almost every day for a year and a half?  That depends on which Wednesday you ask.  Last night, it was burned out … nothing came to mind.  The plan was to write something first thing today.  But today started with a call from my sometimes employer, a company that places experts for short term jobs like consulting on legal cases and evaluation of technologies.  It looks like I have another assignment, although one never knows until the signatures are on the page. Between my hourly rate and what they charge for placing me, there can be sticker shock to someone not used to employing experts.  I’m worth it, not just because I really am an expert but because I work very hard for my clients. (more…)