Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The One Where I Keep Plugging Away

My Blue Barn, 2007, Oil on Panel, 9x9

Well, I think that posts may be a bit more infrequent here in the next few weeks. Everything is converging in the next week; the holidays, finishing up the work for January's show plus a myriad of other activities such as holiday chorus concerts and plays, mundane but necessary paperwork, and putting together the dang family holiday card! At this point I will just be happy if I can get the stupid things postmarked by the 24th. Of course, WE have received many holiday cards from people who are either super organized or who have nothing else to do in November but to mail out their cards. Heh. Anyway, I humbly bow down to all of those people.

However, this is the second year that I have had a solo show scheduled for January and while at first I wasn't too thrilled about the fact that I would have to work pretty hard well into December, there is also a silver lining to that. It has forced me (and our family) to simplify our holidays quite a bit. There is less time for shopping for things that the kids don't really need (or will even look at within a month), I have learned to hand over decorating the tree to the kids, who fully enjoy that process and although I like putting lights up on our porch, in the last two years I have found that Christmas still comes whether they are up or not.

The activities we have kept up with are the ones we all can pitch in and do; baking, making gifts, wrapping them, attending the concerts and other activities and cleaning the house. Well, maybe not that last one so much, but if there is ever a shot that I can get the kids to pick up their stuff without asking twice, it is now.

And while the ever increasing commercialism and consumerism makes me more uncomfortable each year, it has not escaped my attention that both Doug and I are totally contributing to it by creating things that are intended for sale. I am not sure I can ever fully reconcile those opposing beliefs, but I hope that by simplifying our lives we can somewhat offset what we do for a living.

It's the best I can do right now.


Casey Klahn said...

Pink sky with blue barn...I really love this painting. Way to go! I recently reviewed a bunch of your images and continue to feel that your work is outstanding!

gr said...

I know, I hardly need anything but work quite hard to fill everybody else's house with my dust catchers.

Kesha Bruce said...

Aaah, if only there were a way to send our work out into the world without demanding monetary exchange....yet still manage to pay the bills.

Suzanne said...

Hi Tracy,

I just found your site through Annaig's, love your work and am looking forward to your New Year postings. I hope that you enjoy a simple holiday and don't have to ask much twice.

Cecily said...

Dude; you create ART. You do not create CRAP for sale. PUH-lease. There is a world of difference between what you do and the Xbox 360. Your work makes the world a better place, brings joy, and helps heal the rift between hope and pain (ok, maybe that's dramatic, but I'm writer, and that is what your paintings do for me). So get off the cross, baby, we need the wood. :)

That said, this is the first year I've given gifts I'm really proud off--lots of contributions to, gift certificates to our local store that sells locally grown organic produce, a dearly-loved hard copy of an out of print book. It felt good. :)

Tracy said...

Boy, I have not been keeping up with responding to comments. Sorry folks, I know you all must be waiting to hear what I have to say!!haha

Thanks Casey, lovely compliment. And I wish you could see this one in real life, it sure looks better that way.

Gary, guess it is something we all think about at some point. But I really like the dust catchers I have of yours and all the other artists whose work we have.

Kesha, oh that is a big concept to consider. i can't even imagine:)

Hi Suzanne, thanks for saying hi and I am totally looking forward reading through your studio blog. I will be building a studio one of these days and can't wait to learn about your project.

Thanks Cecily, for offering me a new distinction. You are right, but still....

I usually give out home baked things, like to our mailman and whatever and the kids gave jars of honey from our beehive to their teachers this year for Christmas. We are definitely focusing on more unique gifts as well. It's a good trend.

Larry said...

My wife and I saw a few of your paintings in a gallery in Manhattan this past weekend and were very much taken with all of them. Is the photo here of the blue barn the painting that is in that gallery? That one was my favorite.

Great work and we enjoyed very much!

Tracy said...

Hi Larry, so glad you stopped by to say hello and am happy you had the chance to see my work in NYC.

This is a different painting than the one you saw, it is much smaller, only 9"x9", but it is the same barn, ours. I meant to change the colors a bit while painting it this time around, but somehow the pink sky just seemed right again:)

Next time!