Wednesday, December 05, 2018

St Dwynwen part 6

Got to the Studio by late morning today, but Molly beat me there.  No problem- she was busy adding more layers to her silk screening project, and I got back to work on my St Dwynwen project.

I decided to keep working my way around the inside, so matching the cutting from a few days ago of the date and heart, but now in the other corner.  Then in the same way, I cut out the ST DWYNWEN name at both ends, and then the spoons.  More to go, but it shouldn't be that difficult and I have plenty of time.

Tuesday, December 04, 2018

Work Stuff

Some days you have to set aside art to take care of job stuff.  This was one of those days.

My income generally comes from teaching art, so that occupies much of my time.  I would have loved to be back in the Studio today continuing on one of my current blocks, or maybe starting a new one.  I was in the Studio today, but catching up on some school related items.  When I arrived the place was dark and locked up.  I dropped off a load of supplies for the day, closed up again, and went out to pick up some lunch.  Stopped back at my car to pick up another load, went back down to the space, and found the door wide open.  Dropped off the new stuff, and was about to go check with the office, but found Molly in the hall, and realized he had been the one to open it back up.  So I would have company while I worked on my tasks.

One was looking at and starting grading on the major 2D project in my Intro class.   They are large and kind of messy (pastels), and I have more space and large tables in the Studio, so that seems to be the place to deal with those.  I usually have a full critique on the day those are collected, which provides a chance for the students to explain what they did, but other circumstances (university related) only allowed be to collect them.  Was planning to try grading them today (at least the ones I had, as many students didn't turn them in yet), but in some cases I had no idea what they were trying to do, a problem in an assignment where narrative is a major factor.  The new plan (as told to the class last week) is to have the crit this week, hoping more pieces come in.  I think grading would be best left until I know more about the pieces.  At least I was able to mark down which ones were turned in on time.

More productive was work on the collograph project.  I have long had a policy of introducing print projects into all my classes, wherever appropriate to the class and level of students.  In my 2D classes (going back to grad school) we do woodcuts, in Drawing class (again going back to grad school) we do monotypes, and in the Intro class it's collographs.  All the students need to bring is glue; all the rest is things they have in their kits or things I bring in for them to use- cardboard and old fabric scraps to make the plates.  Plates were made several weeks ago, and a few weeks ago I brought in ink and printing tools to print them.  Color and more collage will come from students after that.  Of course it is inevitable that some students are absent, or don't have the plates on the day we print them, and this is one project that they can't do without me.  The best solution I have is to collect the plates, and just print them in my Studio, then bring them back to the following class.  Last week I had two students bring me such plates, the two pieces you see above.  Done with water based ink, they will be dry when I return them in a few days, giving the students a few weeks to add their final part before portfolios are graded. The problem is we are running out of time.  Students who bring me plates next class can get the same deal, but after that there just isn't time to print them and get them back to the students to add their last part before the semester ends.  Well,  they've been warned.

One thing I had learned from Molly is that there were new padlocks for the gate, and if I wanted a key (and they are useful to have) I had to get one from the office, so on my way out I stopped off to see Nichole and got one.  It's been a long time since I was in the building by myself and needed to open the gate to the building, but the holidays are coming, so it's probably good to be prepared just in case.

Monday, December 03, 2018

St Dwynwen part 5

Been a while since I worked on this block, started in late spring of this year.  (details are covered in posts on this blog from this past February and April) This was always intended as my contribution to the East Meets West print show, and with that exhibition being pushed back, the cutting of the block was not a priority.  But now that show has taken its place as the next one on my schedule.  Still months away, but those will likely be busy months, and while this medium-small block shouldn't take long to cut, I decided it's a good time to get this business going.

No changes made to the block drawing since early this year.  The one problem I had today was that I thought the bag I grabbed included my cutting tools, but it only had the student tools I use with my woodcut classes.  These are decent tools, and had been checked and sharpened before the last class, but at best they are not going to be as good as my personal set.  Still, I was able to get a start on the project and am confident it will all be done in plenty of time for the show.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

The Circus part 4

Late November is here.  Now that I am past Thanksgiving and two family birthdays, now that I have gotten the heat fixed in my apartment, now that I have started work on arranging contact for work at a future location, on providing details to a planned spring art show, on setting up next year's health insurance, I can get back to the real important work- making art.  At least by day we are regularly getting above freezing, but not by that much, and the near constant wind (life at the Jersey Shore) takes 15 to 20 degrees off that all day.  Still, today seemed like a good day to get out of the house and work on some art stuff.

One early stop was BelmarArts, to check out the newest art shows (including several pieces by friend of the Studio Lisa Bagwell) and in the middle of our parking lot I spotted this ex-pigeon, seemingly a victim of this weather we've been dealing with in recent days.  Later I was told that it's been sitting there in the parking lot for 3 days, so I guess the cold has helped preserve it, though I'm not sure why nothing else has shown up to eat it.  Either way, I'm now really glad that I got my heat fixed last week.

I continued north to my Studio to get back to work on my latest block drawing.  After fixing the doorknob that I noticed was falling apart last week, I started making adjustments to my Circus piece. Not much new, but I have refined some details on the sign, and of the food items.  The more I look at this thing, the more I feel that the only way this is going to make sense as a depiction of the food is when the color is added.  Copied directly from a photo, the crab part looks more like an insect or an alien creature in the pencil drawing.  I'm hoping that some golden brown color on all the deep fried surfaces will make what it is clearer to the viewer.  Still a few other things to work out and then I can start cutting this thing.

Monday, November 19, 2018

On The Road for Art

Several weeks ago I got an e-mail from my former student Mary Lane, telling me about an amazing night she just had.  She had attended an artist talk by a Gwenn Seemel, at a place called Lyceum Hall, in Burlington.  Not only did she enjoy the talk, but she was very impressed with the building.  One of the co-directors told her that they had inherited some print related equipment and would love to find a printmaker who could teach a class or two.   So naturally Mary started praising her wonderful woodcut teacher, gave her my contact information, and then made sure I got hers, thinking maybe I would be good to teach classes there. When I had a free minute I sent her an e-mail, just a few lines about what I do and could do for them.  The contact, Barbara Fisher, said she was interested to talk more, and her normal days there were Thursdays and Fridays, which made things complicated.  All day on Friday I am in class, and I often spend the other day running around and getting ready for class.  Tried calling a few times, but she was never at the phone.  Then last Thursday we had the worst November winter storm in more than 80 years (so said the news) and I was happy to spend the day indoors.  Tried the phone again and this time she was there, and so we set up a plan to meet the following Monday afternoon.

My apartment has a number of issues right now, but outside, today was about as good a day as we will have this week.  Not exactly warm, but sunny and relatively mild weather.  I looked up the address on my computer map program and saw it wouldn't be too hard to find.  Wrote myself some directions (don't have any county maps for that part of the state), gassed up the car, and took off a little before noon.  From going to many trainings in Hamilton last year I know that there can be some significant traffic around that part of the state around rush hour, but I wouldn't be there for any of that.

I was inside a few minutes before our scheduled appointment, so I guess I had calculated the timing correctly.  I don't know much about Burlington, except that it is right by the Delaware River.  The neighborhood looked like a well maintained urbanish location, like the artsy parts of Red Bank, or Rahway, or Asbury, etc.  I was told that the building is quite old, and had been built as a lyceum, which is why it has that name now, back in the early-mid 19th century.  It had been vacant for a while before this latest arts group moved in, much like our studio building in Ocean Grove, and the Boatworks in Belmar, and so many other places that artists have settled in.  I knew from some web research that there is gallery space, but we never got to there.  Besides the directors' office, the first floor was mostly other art organization offices, and she showed me the classroom space.  Right now a lot of costumes and theater stuff in there, plus a disassembled roller press.  I have no idea how to put such a thing together, so it's a good thing my class doesn't need any presses. Mostly we talked in the office, about arts organizations, art, plans for this place, the kinds of classes I teach, etc.  She seemed very excited by the possibilities.  Turns out she has some familiarity with some of the towns I have lived in in the past, so we had some discussion of those places past and present.

Her hope is to set something up for spring, which should be possible for me.  The next step is she wants me to send her some artist statement and teaching background stuff, so she can present the idea to the board.  We haven't discussed money yet, though I did mention it would have to be sufficient to get me to travel all that way.  As the mapping program predicted, the trip took about an hour, not a short trip, but I drive that far each way on a weekly basis for the college, and have driven further than that for other arts lecturing, as long as the pay was right.  The situation seems worth exploring.
Eventually found my way back to the Turnpike, then home from there.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Behind Glass

To follow up on something I wrote about a few weeks ago, here is that glass display case at the Boatworks, the headquarters of BelmarArts.  I had been invited to put some small works into the case in the back room, and these struck me as the kind of thing that would work well there.  Was able to actually find them, and the rest is history, and documented in an earlier post on this blog.   I was there today to shoot photos for a holiday event and saw the display for the first time.  This situation lasts for about three months I think, and while there is no official reception, in early December there is a reception for a holiday sale of small and inexpensive works set in that building.  I am not part of that show, but anyone coming to see that might see my works, so who knows?

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Back to the Studio

The weather forecasters had promised us one nice day this week and this was to be it.  Looking out the windows this morning I saw sun, so I guess they were right.  So one day to get a lot of stuff done.

Took care of a few minor errands before lunch, and then in the early afternoon, after a few more local errands (including letting Diane at BelmarArts know that I had someone interested in the woodcut class a few days after we cancelled it, but info saved for next spring) I got up to the Studio building.  The first thing I noticed was that the hook for our room had a tag on it, so either Molly was in or had been there recently. Getting to the 1st floor, I noticed her artwork was down from the wall (the last one to be removed), so she definitely had been there if not still there.  I had carried in a tote bag full of print stuff, including a block to work on if I had time.  Took the elevator down to the basement and found Molly was indeed in there, working on a few things, and then about to head out for some lunch.  I walked out with her to the parking lot to get more stuff from my car, then back to the basement to get some work done.

The thing I had gone back to my car to get was a crate full of bench hooks, from a collection I had made over the past few years.  A bench hook is a very simple device that helps hold a wood block in place, allowing the artist to devote full attention to using the gouges for the intended purpose.  I make them out of wood, but I've seen metal ones for sale, and people sometimes use those as a place to roll out ink, but my wooden ones would not be as good for that.  The ones I made vary in size, but would be best used with relatively small blocks, smaller than most of my recent work.  On the other hand, they are a good size for the kind of blocks my Belmar students make, which may be why these things have been popular there.  In fact, a few years ago I had a student who was so impressed with the concept, she made her own a week later.  Between classes I keep them in a milk crate in my Studio, but I had them in Belmar this summer, stored there for the duration of my two series of woodcut classes.  They were in my large plastic bin, marked with my name and class/dates in the storeroom, but it had disappeared at one point, part of an ill-advised reorganization of the storeroom by people who didn't know what anything was.  My storage bin had been removed from the shelf it had been on the past few years and left in a corner, sign turned to the wall, under an old tarp, but at least my stuff was still inside.  Leaving it in its new place, it stored the bench hooks for the second summer class, but when that ended I decided it would be safer to stash the stuff in my car.  With the fall class now cancelled, I figured it's better to pack them up and leave them in my Studio for now (need some of that car space for a snow shovel, since that may be coming this week), except for one small one that I stuck in my backpack to bring to school on Friday, to show a woodcut student who knows what it is but never made one.  Teaching never ends.

And speaking of school on Friday, my other Studio task today related to that as well.  This is one of the projects I do regularly with my Intro class- creating a collograph plate out of cardboard, scraps, and whatever else they come up with, which fits in with the formal issue of texture, something we are supposed to cover.  Ink and printing tools aren't sold on campus or anywhere near it, so I provide those as part of my deal for getting to work on a print project.  I had bought some water based relief ink yesterday, but I was sure I had more in my very messy ink bag (all those summer classes had their effect on my bag) and my large work table and the Studio are much better place to organize all that than my apartment.  I suppose I didn't need a sunny day to do this, but carrying all this stuff to my car, and then to the Studio building, is just easier on a day like this.  What I had in there before yesterday was all my oil based ink cans (not to be used in this week's class), my collection of water based color inks (brand no longer manufactured, but still good, used last year to color my mermaid sculpture and in my linocut class), some black ink tubes, a bag of brayers, and some ink knives.  One of the color inks was a large tube of phthalo green, and even though the cap was on and tube seemed to be intact, thick sticky green ink seemed to be on everything in the bag, so part of my task was to take advantage of the space and our big sink to clean everything and see what I actually had. Turned out that I have a bit of water based black ink in tubes, which I may try mixing with some of the new black ink in the can and use that this week.  Tossed out some empty black ink tubes, probably left from last spring's college class, and got as much green ink off everything else as I could.

The bag was still quite heavy taking it back to the car, but I'll load it more selectively for Friday's class.  Didn't get a chance to work on any woodcuts today, but no immediate deadlines on those, but these inks, etc will be used this week, so that was my priority.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

More Art Stuff

By this past weekend the forecasts for the coming week were predicting rain and/or snow for four of the five weekdays.  What will happen remains to be seen, but rain had started falling last night.  As both an artist who works with prints and a professor/teacher who works in 2D and printmaking, water can be a dangerous thing.  Water can have a very negative effect on things on paper.

Meanwhile I had a thing to deal with.  The Tenants art show at the Jersey Shore Arts Center was scheduled to end this past weekend, with some confusion as to whether it was ending on Saturday or Sunday.  But it would have to end, as Christmas decoration was already starting up and those walls had other plans.   Adding to the confusion, yesterday was Veteran's Day, so no one was in the office.  Life started up again today.

Tried phoning, but no one answered when I called, so I just decided to go up to Ocean Grove after lunch and figure it out then.  Last night's major rain storm ended up moving out to sea earlier than expected.  The sun never came out, so the day remained dark, but at least no rain was falling on everything, and one must take advantage of these opportunities when they happen.  In the office I found a newly hired building manager, who knew very little about the recent exhibition, and Nichole wasn't expected back until late afternoon, but he did know that they were in the process of installing wreaths and trees, which meant the art had to go, and he was more than happy to help take it down so I could get it out of there.  He also knew that Nichole had wanted to get Molly to come remove her wall installation, but they'll have to work that out with Molly themselves.  If it was still raining, I would have moved the framed art temporarily to my Studio, but it seemed safe to take it home, so as the building manager was taking the pieces down, I went out to my car and got some packaging materials.  Back inside, I thanked him for his help (saved me from having to climb the ladder), packed the work into various large plastic bags, and loaded them in my car.

Decided to take advantage of there not being a storm to take care of another errand that can't wait much longer.  This Friday my college classes are printing collagraphs, which means we need ink.  I probably have it, but the ink bag is big and messy, so best to organize it in my Studio space (I'll do that tomorrow), and get more ink today just in case.  (if I don't need it for this week, it will eventually get used) So I departed Ocean Grove, took route 33 to route 18, and made it up to Shrewsbury with no trouble, which is the home to only major art supply store in the region, at least he only one that carries any printmaking supplies. Got a jar of water based black ink suitable for relief, and headed home.  A couple of trips to unload the art into my apartment for now, then I could relax indoors the rest of the day.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Art Comes, Art Goes

Haven't done much new art over the past week, but art is never far from my life.

Last weekend I took care of something at the Boatworks, the headquarters of BelmarArts.  For a few years now we have had glass cases in the back gallery room, which are used to hold art pieces for sale, created by members.  As part of the redistribution of responsibilities, long time member Jim Aberle is now in charge of the "store" and sent me an e-mail offering me a chance to put some small prints in the case. (somewhere between an offer and a request)  What struck me as the best thing for this situation was some of my mini-saint prints, made years ago for sales and things like this.

The above photo shows some of these at a small works sale, in a rack that I acquired long ago, from a store closing sale I believe. The problem was that I didn't know where the prints were, or the blocks that made them for that matter.  I suspected that they were in the Manasquan basement, but finding them would probably require a major excavation of all the junk that's been piled up down there.  Then I was surprised to find about a dozen packaged prints (mat backing boards, typed labels, comic book bags and tape) in a box in my living room, more than enough for this purpose.  (still more missing, so that basement excavation will have to happen eventually) Traded e-mails with Jim for a few days working out the specifics, and then last weekend I dropped off 3 prints as requested, and the inventory form, at the Boatworks.  The work will be there for 3 months, with me being able to replace anything that sells with more of the same.  No official "opening", but there is a brief holiday sale that may bring people in.

Meanwhile, I had a print workshop series scheduled to start there on Wednesday, but promotion was not as good this time, or maybe it's that we are getting close to the end of the year, but no one signed up as of the first day, so we decided to cancel the class.  If I can find a good time slot, I may try to offer it again in the spring.

I know that the Tenants exhibition we have in the Studio building in Ocean Grove is scheduled to end this weekend, but we have received no notice to come pick up our works.  I may need one for another show in the spring, so I stopped by this afternoon to get some information and measure the size of the frame.  I don't know what was going in the building, but the main parking lot was full.  Someone must have left early because there was one parking space.  Since one is all I need, I grabbed it, went inside, and found not much going on.  The art show is still up, no one was in the office, and no events were going on there on the 1st floor.  Took care of my measuring business, and started working my way home.  Just a week ago my classroom was hot and humid, and opening all the windows did no good, but today was like full winter- ambient temperature well below normal for this time of year, plus sustained winds made outside feel like around freezing.  Glad to be done with errands and get home.

Actually I was in the building earlier this week for another meeting, regarding the print exhibition planned there for February.  Questions were answered, plans were made, and we still seem to be on track for the February opening of the show.

Took care of one more thing from the comfort of my apartment, information for an upcoming show.  Back during the faculty show last month I was asked if I'd be willing to participate in another one in the spring, off campus this time.  It seems we were invited by the Long Beach Island Foundation of Arts and Sciences to show in their gallery, part of a rotational thing involving college faculty around the state.  Besides being a regular exhibiter, I was also sought for this because I'm a shore area resident.  Actually LBI is still about an hour away from where I live, but I am probably a lot closer than those faculty who live near Union, not to mention those up in New York, and we will probably be expected to deliver our own work to the gallery.  As with the last faculty show, everything is being coordinated through an online document edit, which as of tonight shows a roster that is pretty much the same as that faculty show, but only about 4 or 5 people (including me) have so far put information  on the form. The deadline is still a few days away, so maybe more will be coming, or maybe more works will be requested.  I'll post details when I know them.

Monday, October 29, 2018

The Circus part 3

These woodcuts don't make themselves, so it was time to get back to the Studio, bringing with me the current block.  Grabbed a slice across the street, then got to my space and eventually got to work.

The pencil doesn't always show up as well as one might like in these photos, but it's there enough for me to see what I'm doing.  The thing I was working on most was the food in the foreground, for which I at least had a photo reference.  In keeping with my orientation plan for the composition of this piece, I would have to reverse the image I had of the soft-shell crab platter, so the sandwich would end up on the right side of the drawing, and the fries and onion rings on the left.  To get he basic shapes I just turned the page with the printed photo over and held it up to the light (window in front of me) so I could see it in reverse.  To see more details, I used an actual mirror I keep in my printing cabinet.  Not easy drawing an accurate deep fried crab in any direction- both symmetrical and irregular, and with so many appendages.  Biology tells us that the crustaceans and arachnids developed along very different genetic lines, but he end results turned out to be quite similar.  As for my drawing of the crab, color and value will play a big part in showing the form and shape and making sense of all the legs, etc.  Also put in a little time on the Circus sign, but this will have to be worked on quite a bit before it is right.  Luckily I got a bunch of photos of it before the building was demolished.  Probably much of what I drew today will have to be redone, but you really can't fix things until you've got something down on paper (or wood) to fix.

On my way out of the building I noticed wreathes and Christmas trees stacked around the hallway.  So I stopped by the office to check with Nichole if the art show had to come down soon.  She assures me that the Tenants art show will remain up for its full planned time, about 2 more weeks.

Friday, October 26, 2018

Another Long Day

Being that it's Friday, that is expected.  Actually traffic up the Parkway was light this morning, and the school didn't shut down any parking lots today.  Taught my 2 classes.  Coming home, lots of traffic, due to multiple accidents on the Parkway South, but I got home.  Most important, I got home before the big Nor'Easter is expected to arrive, so I was able to move my pieces from the recent faculty art show (picked up at school today) home safely.  As I write this, the rain hasn't started yet, but a lot is expected, so tomorrow may be a good day to stay home.

Thursday, October 25, 2018

The Circus part 2

Took care of a few errands today, gradually working my way north.  For example, I stopped at the Boatworks to drop off the filled out form to register my woodcut class, a form I was e-mailed and found last night.  On the schedule for today was another meeting with Nichole at the studio building in connection with the upcoming print show.  This was something Mary was requesting, and so I set up the appointment while I was there yesterday, sent Mary an e-mail, then heard nothing.  Finally called her early this afternoon, at which time she apologized for not getting in touch with me sooner, but she's still sick and needed to postpone today's meeting.  When I got up there I informed Nichole, who was very understanding, discussed possibilities for a new meeting, and since I was there, went down to my Studio to get a little more work done.

And I mean a little more work.  I had left the wood there yesterday on my table.  The building faced route 35, and in it's last form, had the original round section and two wings that stuck out left and right.  There was parking all around the building, but the section for car service was the wing to the right, so I decided to make that the location of my piece.  The building was fairly symmetrical, which makes it easier for me.  I took photos of both sides, but the sun was always low and strong when I was trying to shoot the right, making everything extremely backlit.  This means I can draw directly from one of my left side photos, and the mirror image effect of relief printing means it will look like the right side- just have to reverse the lettering on the sign.  Didn't get too far on the block drawing, but important decisions were made.  The above image shows what I came up with today.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Too Soon No More

I don't like going too long without working on a print, but I feel like it's been a long time since I got any artwork done.  Art related- there's been a ton of that.  College classes, workshops, exhibitions- I've kept pretty busy.  But not much art getting done.  Maybe it's the effect of this Intro class they've had me teach the past few semesters; the most anti-art art class I've ever seen, but that is the way the university seems to want it.  The students who did see my work in the recent Faculty show seemed to really like it, but that started coming down this week.  The work in Ocean Grove also got some good reactions- that has a few more weeks.  Work is progressing on a print show I am providing guidance for.  A studio visit that happened last month was very much appreciated by those who came.  And I got word today that my next workshop in Belmar is officially on the schedule.  So maybe it's time to start acting like an artist again.

Ever since I decided to concentrate on printmaking, I have never had a lack of ideas for artworks.  I have a couple of blocks going already, but I had another one I wanted to get going on, an idea that's been kicking around for a few years.

Anyone who knows this area is familiar with the Circus Drive-In.  It's practically in my DNA.  It was built in the 1950's, which meant that my father worked there in his high school years.  It eventually became a landmark.  It was a pretty standard drive-in type restaurant, open for lunch and dinner, with a mix of burgers, sandwiches, and other typical road side dining fare.  The original shape was round (like a circus big top tent), but later wings were added to both sides, seating for parties, and more spaces for cars to park and order.  A few things set it apart.  One was the inclusion of soft shelled crabs on the menu- common enough in seafood restaurants, but you won't find then at most drive-ins. The second was the theme.  Every item was named after an animal or a typical circus/sideshow attraction.  However, circuses aren't as popular as they once were.  Several years ago the largest of them all, the Ringling Brothers/Barnum & Bailey circus, closed for good.  The original owners ran the place for almost 50 years, then retired, and it was operated for a few years by different people, but the drive-in closed for the season a few years ago and never reopened.  The building remained in place for another year, but now it is torn down, with only the big sign (above) left to mark where it was.

A lot of what once existed in this area is now gone, the land worth more than the value of the businesses that were on them, so the businesses were closed and the land was sold.  Running a business is a long term commitment, while selling property is quick and profitable.  But, as my old professor used to say, art is forever.  The title of this post is a working title for this potential series of artworks about regional businesses that have closed and been demolished, never to be seen again.  It is adapted from a song lyric by the band Bad Brains, from their debut album (circa 1982), regarding the band's being driven out of its hometown years earlier.  Many businesses that were once big are now gone.  I dealt with a few of them in my boardwalk series.  This possible new series begins with the Circus.

My starting point was two photos that document things that no longer exist, one showing the last fried soft shell crab sandwich platter (with fries and onion rings) I ever had there, and a view of the building itself, one of a few I took after it closed but before it was torn down.  The idea is to show it as food on a car hop tray, hanging outside a car window, as a customer might have ordered it.  I've been seeing these images for years, thumbnail icons on my desktop every time I turn on my computer, and I've even tried sketching it out a few times, but turning those tiny images into a block sketch was a challenge.  So today I bit the bullet and printed out full page copies of the two most significant images and brought them with me to the Studio.  The above sketch is the idea I am going with.  Still have to work out all the mirror reversal stuff, and I'm not worried about exactly copying anything from the photos, but at least I have a plan now.  When I get it all figured out, I can start working on a block drawing.

Woodcut Class Returns

Well, I hope.

A few weeks ago I noticed a class or group (whited out, hard to tell what had been there) was eliminated from the Belmar Arts Council schedule for late fall, and decided to try to get another one of mine going.  Had two over the summer, both getting enough to make enrollment, one was actually over the cap I had set, so I decided if there was any demand, I'd be happy to add one more.  Plus, other than needing to buy one more board, I have all the supplies I need to have the class.  Would have been happy to fill out the official form, but no one knew where they were.

Unfortunately, our new director was on vacation again, so nothing could be decided right away.  She was finally back last week, and her quick reaction was to say it shouldn't be a problem.  I was there on the weekend to shoot the opening for the blog, but she was off for the day.  And the college student office assistant is no longer working there- don't know exactly what happened with that.  But today I checked the BelmarArts website and the woodcut class is now up, complete with registration form.  Now all that has to happen is for potential students to discover that it exists and hope that some  people sign up for it.  First class is in two weeks.  Didn't want to go much later than that, as I like to not push things too close to Christmas.

The class will meet 4 times, not quite as spread out as we were for the early summer classes.  The dates are November 7, 14, 28, and December 5.  At the usual 6:30 - 9:00 pm time we have used the past few years.  I'll start spreading he word tomorrow, and hope that BelmarArts can arrange some publicity.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Almost Done

We had the official reception for the 2018 faculty show just a couple of days ago, and now it's almost on its way out the door.  Yesterday I had a chance to see the show one last time, as it was the day in the semester when I bring my Intro class on a tour of the whole art building (they rarely have seen such things) and this typically includes the main gallery.  This year there happens to be the faculty show there, so when I didn't get to take photos of the show on Wednesday, I knew I'd have one more chance.

(my pieces are in the two alcoves to the right in the photo below, so you can't see them here, but they are up on this blog a few weeks ago)

Got the door combination from the person in charge of the show last week, so I let myself in this morning.  There was a gallery assistant there for the afternoon show.  The exhibition used to be much bigger in the past because the department was much bigger in the past.  When I first started working there, separate shows for full time faculty (over 10) and adjuncts (over 30) and the galleries were full each time, both with art and visitors to the reception.  A few years ago the numbers had dwindled to the point where the two groups were combined into one show- I think we had a total of 13 participants this year.  As for visitors, the assistant at the desk yesterday told me that over 100 people have been recorded over the duration of the exhibition and about 30 total had shown up at some point during the reception, though not all at once.  She also expressed disappointment (as she had when the show first opened) that it was so short, feeling the art deserved a longer run.  I do know that the gallery was empty for the first month of the semester, but something else is on the schedule for next week, so it will come down by then and the organizer will store my work in her office until my next class day next week.

As for the students, on the tour they reacted most strongly to the large charcoal life drawings in the hallway on another floor (my class covered charcoal so I told them with practice they could do the same thing), and in the exhibition they particularly liked a large carved bench (furniture design had been on the tour, so I pointed out that they could take a class to learn this sort of thing for college credit).  The show is being kept up through the weekend, perhaps to take advantage of homecoming activities (which resulted in much of student and faculty parking being eliminated yesterday, although at least my usual spots weren't roped off this time and I'm always there early enough to get available spaces), and while I don't know if the gallery will be open, if it is a few more people will get to see the art.