when i worked at a healthy grocery chain as a chef one of my jobs was to keep up with the culls–food that made it to the back sanctum, to be cooked and sold, or donated to churches and hot food lines, or, if not so rescued, composted.
i would take a bunch of challah burger buns, and a case of too-ripe tomatoes, with milk that had two days left on it to sell, and so forth, and create a tomato-basil-mozzarella bread pudding.
right now, the text for Do Well of Must(the book for my grant project) is complete. i am culling thru hundreds of drawings for which to include in the book. i must show my progress, which means i need to feature early roughs. in my culling, i came across portraits i made of my best friend Stephanie King, who shot herself dead with a gun in March of 2014.
King befriended me, having read my memoirs. we were attached at the hip. she wanted to write, so i asked her to write something, didnt matter what–and show it to me. what she handed over was some of the most raw, poignant, poetic prose i have read. i had a visceral reaction to it. her grammar was on a sixth-grade level, at best. as an editor, i decided to leave the grammar alone. there are writers who strive for the dialect she naturally inclined towards. she was going to go to school to learn how to write….alas.
here are some portraits i made of my good friend, who never had a bad word to say about anyone. i believe her capacity for love and joy was an equal match for her endurance of pain, but in a moment one can have a snap in judgement. she will be recalled for the love she gave.
i finished the text to Do Well of Must, and give myself til the end of January to select the drawings to go in it.
meanwhile, i was talking to a friend who is a dealer and collector of small press books, music, outsider art, and such. i asked him about signatures. since i dont like my handwriting i dont sign my work. for maybe three days, i signed what i drew with a cursive font-type from Microsoft. otherwise, i have written poems or letters to give the work provenance, if asked for such.
the dealer said get a signature, even if it is a stamp, so i will heed him. he also suggested 10 and 2 — that is, to produce 2 canvases of any drawing, and ten fine paper prints. this means i really need a ledger, to record each drawing that goes out. it also means im not likely to keep any for myself. but that is not new, i have few Green Panda Press titles in my possession. people do ask why the art is not signed….so now, to find myself a good notebook and stamp.
i have nearly finished the text for Do Well of Must. it explains where i come from and how i began to draw, an explanation of the mediums i use, how i define a feminist artist and my goals as a female artist, plus my future goals and intentions as a resident of Henry County, Kentucky.
the challenging part will be choosing art to insert between the text. book design is one of my favorite activities, but i have yet to design such a book as this. may take a couple of weeks. in the meantime i have finished work on ‘A Bouquet of Flowers: Green Panda Anthologese 2016’…the first major hand-made anthology i have made in some time. i find it is useful to juggle a few projects at once, to make progress on each in increment, because a project does not come to fruit but on its own time.
editor Chris Brooke from Henry County Local visited my home the other day to hear about the project. i look forward to what he might write about it. he told me the businesses and orgs of Henry are hungry for culture; i intend to use them as they exist to be used—to bring about more culture. i will post here what he writes when it comes out.
when the book is complete i need to make PR materials to send to bookstores and libraries. once mailed, i will follow up by phone or email and start soliciting participation.
but for now im jes sitting in my house of rising sun, bookin’ it.
tomorrow the grant check is sent, and so the project begins. i am summoning up my female energy and male potential. first off, create the book Do Well of Must.then i shall proceed to solicit bookstores and libraries to sell the book with my art on display. should be interesting…curious to see whether my nude studies and erotic art will make venues hesitant to participate in the final event. they must agree to hang whichever piece i send. check out the gallery, if you like. you will see a wide variety of style and subject matter. i draw what comes for me.
have this collection i called Celestials. with a new calendar year in the loom, i thought id share these drawings. perhaps they would make a nice calendar?
i drew Celestials over the course of a few days, last February 12-16. found them while organizing my art by date and theme, so that i have my drawings in good order while i make the book Do Well of Must (Green Panda Press 2016). the book will track my progress as a self-taught feminist artist, and is part of my Artist Enrichment grant project.
i made this collage from a photograph i took when walking my usual farm roads, Cemetery to MacGruder. the photograph was a wooden fence post with some ivy growing on it, and some grass beneath, and some shadows to play with.
i did not save the photo! i cant even find it.
once again, i learn the hard way. of course it would be useful and informative to save the photograph which was the source of my collage. it would help the viewer to see what i made something out of.
i do have the photos for most of my collages, but now i will be sure to save them, side by side in a sensibly named folder.
there are many companies advertising amazing discounts and offering coupon codes to put your jpgs on canvas. i have already begun ordering my drawings on canvas, to be displayed in the libraries and stores with my art book.
two pieces arrived and looked splendid.
three pieces arrived from one company—such terrible quality, this poet cant conjure words to describe. it has been a saga to return the canvases. i even contacted the BBB, and it worked because the company got in touch….but it is not yet resolved, alas.
something i realized as i begin to have the canvases made, is they are offered only in particular sizes. i dont draw with sizes in mind! so sometimes i need to modify a drawing before i upload it to a canvas site.
i drew these (yesterday) 12.19.15. i had to add borders all-round the actual intended borders, in order for the drawings to fit a standard canvas. i am curious how they will come out, since i used colored pencils (of the digital variety) to draw them. it will be like a texture upon a texture. we shall see!
with borders it looks like this, but stretched on the frame the extra borders wont show. whats ridiculous about this, is Paint doesnt show inches anywhere. you cant know how many inches or centimeters….only pixels and resolution, so its been a guessing game. i suppose when i draw something i can choose ratios that will produce standard sizes.
when KFW awarded me this grant, they pointed out i did not explain how i made the art i submitted, or the date my pieces were made.
i think anyone whos had some instruction would know this is an important aspect! now i know. anyway, i wanted to show how i make my collages. last night i came across an image online which inspired me–
using just this photograph, i went on the computer program Paint, and used my mouse to cut and paste in order to make this collage.
there are goddesses associated with the bull, like Pasiphae and Selene. perhaps this was in my subconscious. i am not sure why the bull came to mind when i saw the beautiful stone sculpture. i make what i make without forethought, by sitting down with a blank mind.
here is my project:
–make a book Bree: do well of must which showcases my progress as a self-taught visual artist.
–create a body of work on canvas.
–solicit bookstores and libraries to display my book, along with an original work for one Friday-Saturday. (some pieces will be nude studies or erotic art).
–blog the process here, as a way to gauge how receptive the public is to public display of nude studies or erotic art by a female artist.
Bree is an artist & poet from
Cleveland, OH. she now lives
in Pleasureville, KY. open
farmland. 360-degree view
of oh my. she received a 2015
Artist Enrichment grant from The Kentucky Foundation
for Women. check in here
to track her progress.