Knife/Crow piece finished – thanks to Paul Holsby

The other day as I was cleaning up in a remote corner of the property I found a couple of pieces discarded by the previous owner/artist Paul Holsby. The had cut tin plates in abstract (?) shapes and colored them. He had used them for a sculpture in the yard, probably quite a few years ago, see photo below. I cleaned off most of the moss and dirt and glued them onto my painting, as colored clouds, birds or whatever your imagination wants. A great contribution by Paul Holsby, who passed away in December 2007. He was a fine artist who was able to keep a childlike curiosity and imagination all his active life!knifcro9











Photo: Barbro Hallin

Very unhappy – happier now

I was incredibly unhappy with the vandalism of my painting and I felt I needed to fix it, touch it up, somehow. So I did… believe it or not, I feel happier now. Maybe not happy, but happier. If that makes sense?knifcro7

The surface is actually pretty neat.knifcro8

Vandals in the studio

Look what happened today! Disgusting…knifcro5


As I feel rather troubled by this act of vandalism, I assume others will as well. And if they do, I guess it will be quite alright.
My mom came for a visit a couple of days ago. She liked the bird. “But what are you going to do with the knife?” she said, with large and troubled eyes. I thought it was hilarious.

Next step

Could not let it rest. One more step.knifcro4

Something different

The result: a pain in the neck.knifcro3

I will let it rest for a day or so. The plan was to leave the top 2/3 area unpainted. Not so sure about that now? Boring? What does it need?

New stuff in the works

I have started a new piece. A difficult project because I am working on a pretty low grade plywood board that is like rough paper – the oil seeps out sideways and makes the contours fuzzy. And I want to keep a good part of the plywood unpainted. So I have to be very careful and work with a 2 mm wide paint brush. It is a slow process and becomes quite meditative, especially if I have some good music going. Last night I listened to piano music by Claude Debussy, Erik Satie, Camille Saint-Saëns, Zbigniew Preisner, etc. Nice for a change. Impossible to have too catchy and rhythmic music, have to have a steady hand…knifcro1

The photo makes it very clear that I have to invest in new fluorescent lights in the studio. I can’t see this color difference, it is only the camera that picks it up. The piece is 60 x 120 cm. The picture below shows the lines becoming a bit fuzzy. But this is just a start.knifcro2

What is perfect, what is right?

How is a piece of art judged? By the artist? By the art world? When is a piece of art a masterwork? A piece of crap? When am I satisfied with my own work? Very difficult questions. I am not looking for perfection, but for a perfect feeling. tinyhead10

Worked late last night. Added quite a bit of white and some red. It is slowly getting there. Something is not right. I can see flaws that I am ok with, that I am not going to adjust, but I can also see some areas I want to return to. In this time of fast technical advancement, with 3D printers, drones for everyone, youtube, photoshop, and so on, it is comforting and satisfying to practice the art of painting, because it has always been the “same” (and a unique) challenge and always will.

Lots of action in the studio

I am on a roll, things are going great, staying very active and busy, even though most of the stuff I am working on right now is too early to show, would not make sense. The big exhibition sign is ready, the profile painting of Spotted Bull is mounted and has one coat of boat varnish. As soon as my son honors me with a visit I might get his help to mount this outside, so it will be seen from the road and hopefully attract some interest ahead of Easter.skylt5

Subtle changes

I don’t really know why, but I am getting more pleased with the “doll head”.tinyhead9