Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Raven, the Trouble Maker

 I see I haven't posted for a while.... well, blame Raven.

I started doing some designs with a large black Raven on them a couple of years ago. It was Hallowe'en that led to that, really. My booth at the Market was looking pretty skinny (it was the last week of the season) and I wanted something black and white so I painted some large bowls with Ravens on them. I liked them, and painting free-hand was fun. Painting large black thugs was therapeutic!

What I hadn't expected was that people would like them.

So I did some more, and then some more and then some mugs and one thing led to another until this spring I foolishly applied to be included in my local Arts Society's group show at the Foyer Gallery. This was totally uncharacteristic for me. I dislike competitions and know I never do good work when I am under pressure, so why I did this I don't know. Probably I didn't expect to get in so it didn't matter.

But I did. So I figured, well, OK, lots of time, I don't need these pieces until July 14th. Then I found out the theme for the show was to be 'Summertime and the Living is Easy', which didn't exactly help. I couldn't really paint Ravens hoisting cans of beer or b-b-q-ing or sitting by the pool, so what was I going to do?  I had the awful thought that I'd have to make Raven look happy. A happy Raven would definitely not be up to anything good.

So then I was told to submit pictures of the finished work by June 25th. Right in the middle of a Serious Project (Serious Projects are the kind that make money) and during the busiest time in the garden and while various Home Systems were falling apart, I had to stop and work on Raven instead. This is another way Raven causes trouble.

Making the pieces was no big deal. I decided to make some shallow bowls like before, some small plates and some mugs. I only needed 4 pieces for the Gallery so I figured the rest would be for sale. Then I started to paint..... and Raven just did not co-operate. Some looked like kind cheerful souls, quite the wrong 'look'. Others were limp.... or plain boring.... Raven causing trouble again.

Of course I ran out of black and my favourite large brush disintegrated and I couldn't figure out how to show mist in the distance. Just more Raven trouble.

But I got them done, and photographed. Here is one of the designs, which I'm calling Woods Edge Summer.

Whew, met the deadline, now I can relax.

Until Raven's next trick.