Jan. 5, 2015
I wish I had a time lapse of painting these tulips. I went through fifty shades of color and at least five large tubes of oil. I would ice up the canvas with thickly painted tulips and then scrape it all off in frustration. I guess it was on about the fifth removal that I finally saw the true painting emerge. Leaving the half scraped canvas I added back in some pops of colors and finally signed it. Moral of the story, don't give up. I was just about to toss my vision when a satisfying end result surfaced. In fact, I liked it so much I decided to paint some more - only in a different color base. And guess what, the same thing happened. Scrape, scrape.
Nov. 23, 2014
Tomorrow is our last critique class with Ben Williams. Ben Williams was the first curator of NC State Museum of Arts, now known as the Gregg Museum of Art and Design and also curator of the NCMA. His wealth of art knowledge is amazing. He even trained under Matisse and has shared his artistic direction and spirit with our critique class for over 25 years. I have felt honored to be a part of his world. This will be the last piece I will bring in for review. What will he say about this one - stay tuned to find out.
- Well the verdict is back. He loved it. Nice way to finish out a year!
Sept. 28, 2014
In my opinion, abstracts are the most difficult thing to paint. What you find inviting to look at yourself might come off as a complete disaster to another critique. Recently I was trying to complete a commission for a client and attempted several versions before coming up with the perfect painting for her home. Above was one of the attempts, which I personally have grown to love. The oil painting she wound up loving is this one. Which one are you attracted to and why? Let me know on my Facebook page - Susan Dahlin Fine Art.
June 27, 2014
When I was a child my father let me paint abstracts all over my bedroom walls. My mother was horrified thinking of the time it would take to sand down the inches of paint when it came time to sell the house. Dad thought it was cool and encouraged me to continue. I would paint the name of my heart throb in the middle of my psychedelic mural. It left a serious bump by the end of my high school years.
That is what I love about the Art Spirit, it can take you away to a place where you escape the present and wind up somewhere down the yellow brick road. When stress builds and I need a break, painting an abstract makes me happy. It is just like any other cow I paint only this time the outcome is undefined and manifests itself from the mood of the day. It's funny how that happens that colors used and their creation can have a direct correlation to how you are feeling when you paint. I'd say that 99% of the time I am happy and hoping that my work will make you happy too. I don't want to explain it, justify composition, balance or any other rhetoric used to define the correct way to create art. To me art is in the eye of the beholder and if mine gives your pupils sparkle - I feel complete.
June 15, 2014
This photo is of Joel, one of my favorite patrons taking one of my classes at The Artist Theatre in West Jefferson. In fact, it was in the Willingham's gallery where I taught my very first art class. You see, the owners of the gallery, Lisa and Steve Willingham, are not your ordinary kind of people. They make things happen and always in a very special way.
And it just so happens that Steve, (artist, farmer, landscape architect, builder, the list goes on) just completed another task - author of a new children's book, The Magic Frog. If you have got a minute of two, watch this incredible video tribute to my very dear friends on their webpage
May 18, 2014
The family exhibit which ran at the Ashe County Arts Council drew a great crowd -- but my best fan was Zaneeta, the gallery cat. She sat starring at this painting "All Ears" for 15 minutes. Guess the cat has good taste :)
May 18, 2014
Some photos from the show in West Jefferson.