This works if I'm staying elsewhere for the night. When it comes time to actually sleep on the boat, four or five paintings all drying can put off some fumes. I've made the mistake of sleeping in a sealed up boat full of wet paint and if you don't like headaches it is not recommended.
So I'm looking into some real workshop space. I'm also looking into some new galleries, I have some new paintings in progress and my inventory is getting to a point where I can afford to expand a little.
The one to the right already sold, but I'm working on making some more paintings like this one. Above is my first serious attempt at a daytime ocean scene.
But squid and fish and octopus, people don't really want those kinds of paintings in Pennsylvania. I'd always sketched these kinds of things but it wasn't until I came to Alabama that I ever thought to paint one and try to sell it.
You know people say that art isn't about money, but people also forget that commerce is a kind of communication. Yes, it's true that I can't afford to not sell my work. Paintings need to move to make room for more paintings. I need money for supplies and bills to pay. I don't have the luxury of practicing in private and keeping my work to myself until it is to where I want for it to be.
If I did, I might keep these smaller pieces like the one on the left to myself, because they are after all, more like sketches, in the same way that musicians don't put a show on and charge admission to every practice session, I don't really want to put every little sketch-piece I do on sale.
However, I am glad that I'm sort of forced to work the way I do. I'm glad I have to show people every little thing I paint and give them the opportunity to buy it. It challenges me to be relevant. It keeps me humble. It's very humbling to have your best and worst pieces alike put on display for all to see, and humbling to have to put a price on them, especially when you have to lower the price because something isn't selling.
I'm hoping to grow my art out of the coastal fishy genre that I have enjoyed, and to get back into the more pithy, textural stuff that I was doing in PA.
I want to incorporate more depth and texture into what i'm already doing as well as some of the more spiritual, meditative bits.
Most impressive to me are those painters who can combine that abstract with they hyper-real. Where what might be a couple of me standing on a sidewalk, is really all about light and color, and the concatenation of forms.
Which is why I don't let the genre get to me. Yes, I'm working with coastal themes. But whistler painted his mother sitting in a chair in a dark room. Wyeth painted a little bit of frost on the grass outside. I can paint a fish, and it can be about more than a fish.
I have decades to go before I'm on par with any of those painters, but I have a destination in mind.