Friday, May 29, 2009

Gail Siptak- Art and Meaning

'Saving the Birds' 36"x72" Oil on Canvas

What is the meaning of doing art for you?

Like so many who tread this path, " making" was bred
in the bone. Early drawing, talking, dramatizing, early
symbol making. It continues to be a form of communication.
I soak it up with my eyes .....the bend of an arm, the
shift of a body, the balance of objects in real space.
Transferring the feel of what I see to paper or canvas
gives it away, rids me of the need, allows me to begin

At first I did it for myself. Then for others. Then for
notice. It seems, now, after so much was achieved and
so much forgotten, that, after all, I do it for myself.
It relieves my heebie jeebies, eases my pain, calms my
exuberance, balances my worries, makes me think I am
the mistress of my little universe and lets me say my
little piece.

Gail's website is:
Her Blog is:
Her flickr is
Her gallery is:
Her email is:

Thursday, May 28, 2009

In Memorium-Freddy

1994-2009 My beautiful Freddy, a Himilayan, (not to be
mistaken as any ordinary cat, for Himilayans are very
different) passed into the realm of spirit today and will
be sorely missed.

Freddy was 16 and led a very good life. He caught
rabbits, chipmunks and snakes on the side of Mt.
Tamalpais in California. He ruled the neighborhood in
Portland, Oregon where he hung out across the street
under an abandoned house at the local cat speakeasy
playing cards and drinking bootleg fish whiskey. He
moved to a Motel in La Grande, escaped and spent
a night in the wilds of the town of La Grande, where
something happened (his owners will never know what)
and he decided to retire to indoor life where he was quite
content until two very stupid dogs moved in. After
some adjustment he learned to cope. He is survived
by two humans, Kirby and Katherine, 3 cats, Scooter,
Buddy and Matisse and well, of course, the two stupid
dogs Maggie and Sadie.

Three Families

Oil on canvas 40"x30" $1295 plus shipping
If you are interested in purchasing this painting please
email me at

The last two days I have not been creating but cleaning.
I must have the Spring cleaning bug. I hope to make it to
my studio today. I have another drawing I have in my

It looks like '2 Crows' sold. The check is 'in the mail'.
I will be selling Giclee prints of it. So if anyone is interested
it will be the same prices and deal as the coyote and the Angel.

If you don't already know about the beautiful art Brian Eno
has created and is shining on the Sydney Opera House you
will want to check this out (thanks to Rocky for sending it to

Today's post is Three Families which as a painting has had
several incarnations. I am hoping this is it. C'est finis!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Alexander Innes- Art and Meaning

'Size 10' Mixed Media on canvas 137cm by 114cm
(approximately 54"x 45")

What is the meaning of doing art for you?

I am not a philosopher so I shall leave philosophizing at the
door for those who can do it far better than I. I can only
answer this question from a strictly personal perspective. So
I guess this then leaves me to tell you why I paint and draw.
I began painting for no reason and with no purpose. I felt the
urge to paint one day. . . so I did just that. . .I painted a
portrait. So now I paint or draw each day.

I can't say that it is exactly a blissful enjoyment for me. Art
at times makes me feel like I am repeatedly putting my head
through a brick wall. . . and it gets no softer. Continuous
searching in the pretty sure knowledge that complete
satisfaction will never be attained. . .plus a set of grizzled
hands and fried grey cells into the bargain. Hardly a bonanza.
So why do it. . .why bother ?

Well, if I don't paint, draw, make some mark then somethings
up. . . not right. I need to search because I love colours and
forms. How they work. . . what works. . . what doesn't work.
How big, how small, how rough, how smooth. The ins and
outs of Art through my eyeballs. And occasionally my eyeballs
get a reward. Something that I can stand back from and think
how did that happen. That's a good feeling, a beautiful one.
When you can produce something and no matter how fleeting
the emotion is it can make me come to Life with energy and
happiness. Then that's quite wonderful sensation.

However that is not the meaning of me doing Art. To be
honest I do not have the faintest idea of the meaning of me
doing Art. I don't know why I started but I do know why
I continue and maybe this comes closest to answering the
question. Because Art is a strange path to choose. A path
that I feel chooses you rather than you choosing it. So as I
am on that path the best thing I can do is get busy with it.
Paint what is in my heart and not think too much about it.
I think the meanings and meanderings of its path take care
of themselves in the end.

Alexander's art can be seen at:
His email is:

Monday, May 25, 2009

Sharon Zappha Barfoot- Art and Meaning

'Root Chakra' 12" X 12" encaustic

What is the meaning of doing art for you?

When I approach a new blank canvas I attempt to establish

a dialogue. That dialogue is with me and the canvas; me and

my inner perception of my world; me and those who stop to

view the work. I open conversations with signs and signifiers.

I give clues. I try to reach into the recesses beyond what we

see with the eye alone. I journey to the bare essence of a

moment in time. With each canvas I hope to create a sense

of anticipation. I want people to feel that "something" is

happening outside of the scope of what you can see. I want

the viewer to participate. And most of all, I want to remain
a participant myself.

Creating, whether it be with paint, textiles, or sculptures,

gives me my voice. When words alone are not enough,

I paint. When I establish this dialogue with a canvas I am

given permission to speak in many more languages than just

the language I use for words. It is that ‘unifier’ that reaches

across all barriers to convey and idea; a story; my story.

Zappha's website is:

Her Blog is: An Artist's Studio-At A Glance
Her email is:

Check out her Etsy

Friday, May 22, 2009

Joseph Jahn- Art and Meaning

'Abstract 45' Oil on Canvas 120x100 cm (48"x40" approximately)
What is the meaning of doing art for you?

The meaning of Art to me is life itself. Funny
how people set Art in some special box. If
asked, folks would say they know nothing about
Art. However they do. They live with it everyday,
and would absolutely notice if it suddenly
disappeared from the planet. It's gazing at the
ground in a daze of thought, it's watching your
cat, it's love and hate and rage and tenderness.
Artists are simply the ones with the opportunity
and skill to set these thing in some detached
form, be it a concept or sculpture or painting
or Whatever. But as Art it is just another,
however elevated, form of life. Being an
abstract painter I'm often asked "What is it?"
and I reply, not being smart but honest,
oil paint on canvas.

Joseph's website

Thursday, May 21, 2009


The original drawing (charcoal, conte, and gouache
on paper 22x30) is sold. Beautiful Giclee prints
are available on Hahnemuhle rag paper with
archival ink. 22x30 $250, 18x24 $150. A second
print of the 'Angel', 'Coyote' or 'Says Who?' is half
the price.

I spent yesterday drawing, something I haven't done
for a while. I did not finish so in the spirit of where
my energy will be focused today I am posting a sold
drawing I sell now as a Giclee print. Drawing is such
intense work for me because I am very focused on
seeing what I am working from and at the same time
I am going in and doing things to break the illusion of
control so it will not simply be a rendering but an artistic
statement. On the crow drawing I was working on
yesterday I sprayed water on it, sanded it, painted into
it and scratched it with a razor. I did all of that on today's
post except the razor.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Rachel Schlueter- Art and Meaning

'Rain Cat' Oil on Masonite 6"x8"

What is the meaning of doing art for you?

I feel there are opposing forces in our world, they are love
and fear. Love expands and fear contracts. Making art for
me is an act of love. It is my belief that this creative act of
love contributes to the expansion of consciousness. When
I am painting I am expressing my potential as a human.
Art is a gift and being an artist is a privilege. When I show
up for my art I see it as my contribution to something larger.
It is for this reason I encourage the creative process in others.

Rachel's web site is:
Her blogs:

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Dream Weaver

Oil on canvas 14"x11" $275 plus shipping
If you are interested in purchasing this painting please
email me at

I have Pandora playing as I do my internet work and I
ask you how can a girl come up with something intelligent
to say when the Beatles are singing 'Back In the USSR'? I
just wanted to get up and dance. Alas I am working in a very
small office with my dog at my feet. It just would not have

I have been feeling a bit blocked creatively lately, it seems
all I could make was a mess. I have learned though that
often I make another step forward with my expression
after these periods. Here's to hoping that is the case.
Yesterday I saw a bit of an opening and was able to finish
2 paintings.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Donna Marsh- Art and Meaning

'Yesterday' Oil on canvas 16"x20"
What is the meaning of doing art for you?

It's odd, but in popular culture artists are portrayed as
flaky-crazed individuals who drink too much and worse.
But I am never quieter or less crazed than when I'm
painting, planning a painting, or thinking about painting,
because it requires everything from me, and I'm willing
to give it. So for me, doing art is an island of sanity in a
strange world. It's the one place I can make sense of
what I know but can't put into words. And it's not some
exalted knowledge or anything like that. Everybody
knows it. But they are equally tongue-tied about these
matters. Perhaps they will come across my painting and
not just see it, but recognize it. And that is my favourite
conversation, because it's something that can occur with
people who have very different experiences from me,
different beliefs, likes, dislikes and yet, for a moment,
we have a little agreement about the human condition.
Mi casa, su casa.

The rest is about my relationship with the paint. I love
everything about the paint. I love the colour, the texture,
the smell. I can argue with it, I can push it, but most of
all I can trust it. The studio is where I can continue
growing this competence. It is also where I can break the
bonds (but quietly) of my Canadian couth and restraint.
These hands that are gloved most of the year get dirty.
Those snowy wastes I find so compelling don't just live
outside. It's a wonderful thing to get up in the morning
and go colour my world.

Donna's website is:
Her Flick address is:
Her email is:

Friday, May 15, 2009


Oil on canvas 14"x11" $275 plus shipping
If you are interested in purchasing this painting please
email me at

I have a stack of paintings that returned from the gallery
that I have decided to rework. So in the spirit of Mercury
retrograde (it goes on for 3 weeks) I am repainting them
using the original as an interesting under layer. Today's
painting is the first I have finished. I have three others in
different levels of being worked on. I love working over a
painting. It creates a visual of a painting that has really
been worked, which is one of my favorite things to see in
a painting.

I am a little frustrated with the way this picture is posting.
It looks blurry, so please click on the image to see it larger.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Wish Fulfilling Gem

Oil on canvas 24"x30" Collection of the artist.

Today I decided to post the painting that is my header
I am so pleased with the way my Art and Meaning
project is unfolding. It is truly a wish coming true.
My next wish is for it to become a book, but I will be
patient, I need many more artists to respond.

Being an artist is also a wish come true. I did not realize
that wish until I was in my 40's. I was sitting with a
friend talking about my frustrations. She asked me who
I was envious of. The answer was simple, why my artist
friends. She commissioned me on the spot to do a piece
of work for her. Thank you Elizabeth. I feel very blessed
to be connected with my creativity, it hasn't always been
easy, but it has always been a blessing.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Joseph Raffael- Art and Meaning

'Blossoming' Watercolor on paper 60"x90" 2009

What is the meaning of doing art for you?

Art's meaning for me.
This is the way it is for me.
There's no question. No ifs and buts. There is no choice.
I have no say.
There is nothing else to do. It's like breathing.
For me, it is our daily activity of opening-to-and-assisting
the invisible-becoming visible.

This is the life of the quotidian----an expression within
moments in time----a gesture, a knowing, a not-knowing
expressed & becoming part of eternity.

This art coming up and out, through an artist goes into
the world's air as imagery. It moves on and on and on just
as our breath does, in the same way as we breathe in the air
of our ancestors.

The imagery we help come through becomes part of the
imagery of all times' consciousness, like the unending,
unstoppable, unrepeatable flow of the rivers, or of
the powerfilled clouds appearing out of seemingless
nowhere moving across the mind's sky.

We birth that which has never lived before.------3 May 2009

Josephs website is:

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Sonata "Best of Show"

Oil on canvas, 48"x36", $1800 plus shipping
If you are interested in purchasing this painting
please email me at

I know, I know you have already seen this piece, but
I have some bragging to do. I entered 'Sonata' in the
Open Regional Exhibit at the Pendleton Center for the
Arts and darn if I didn't win Best of Show. So there
she hangs with a ribbon next to her as proud as can be.
I have been in many juried and judged shows and I
have won a few awards but this is the first Best of Show.
It was very fun to see all the talent in the show and
there was quite a showing. I didn't know many of the
artists. I live in a remote area and the show covered
Southeast Washington and Eastern Oregon. There is a
good bit of artistic talent out here.

Prudence Roberts was the judge. She is an Art History
teacher at one of the better community colleges for art
in Portland Oregon. She curates the gallery at the college.
She previously curated the American and European Art at
the Portland Museum of Art. It was fantastic having a
highly qualified judge for the show. The director of the
Pendleton Center for the Arts did a fantastic job of hanging
the work. It is no easy task in an open show to orchestrate
all the different work.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Terry Rafferty- Art and Meaning

'32 Chevy Oil on canvas 24"x18"

What is the meaning of doing art for you?

The first thing I thought of when I read this
question was "peace of mind". That seemed
like an odd response, so I thought about it some
more... and yes, that is what it means to me.
I love the challenge of making bits of paint tell
a story, and I love the positive feedback when
someone sees a piece that speaks to him or her.
But its the actual hours at the easel when I am
totally engaged that I am at peace. The quiet,
the solitude, reaching for a goal and hopefully
achieving it brings a sense of order and well-being
that nothing else does. So, like many of the other
artists that answered this question, I would have
to say that painting feeds my soul like food and
oxygen feed my body and brain.

Terry's website is:
Her blog is:
Her email is:

Friday, May 8, 2009

The Musician

Charcoal on paper, 30"x22", Unframed, $295 plus shipping
If you are interested in this drawing please send an
email to or phone 541-278-9201

Today's post was delivered yesterday to the beautiful
Pendleton Center for the Arts along with 6 of my daily
paintings for the gift store. It was a lovely if a bit windy 65
degrees yesterday in Pendleton, Oregon...yes, home of
the Pendleton woolen mills. The drive was gorgeous with
beautiful views, hail and fluffy white clouds.

I drew this while the musician was playing. He was very

Thursday, May 7, 2009


Oil on canvas 24x18 $495 plus shipping
If you are intereested in this painting please
email me at

Today I am taking a day trip to Pendleton, so no
painting. I am excited to get back to the studio
and see what comes out. Hopefully this weekend.
I hope to post some new work soon, Yikes!

Does any one know anything about the Florence
Biennale of Art? I have been invited but it is hugely
expensive. Don't know if it is a scam or a real thing
or what.

Well have a fabulous day. I am thrilled to be putting
the pedal to the medal today, I haven't been out since
my fall.

Hopefully I will have an Art and Meaning post soon.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Ugly Duckling I

Oil on canvas 48x36 Collection of artist
Collaboration with Cindy Bilotti (and her Flickr)

I am going to talk a little astrology today. Be warned I know
very little about it. This evening Mercury the planet of
communication is going retrograde.

"When a planet is in retrograde, it appears to be moving
backwards in the sky when viewed from earth. Of course it
is not actually moving backwards, but the illusion of
backward motion is created due to the differing speeds of
planetary orbits around the sun."

What I have learned about it is that when it is retrograde
we are advised to do things that start with re. Rework,
rewrite, rethink well you catch my drift.

I can already feel this movement in my own life as I
rethink my expression in art. What is my next step,
what is it I want to express, what is my true artistic
voice? I know the answers are continually evolving,
but here I am again. In search of the answers to this
I find myself going to this piece Cindy and I collaborated
on which is the painting I kept in my own collection.
It is speaking to me and wants to inform me, to guide me.
I am listening.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


Oil on canvas 24"x18 $495 plus shipping
If you are interested in this painting please
email me at

A few days back from my trip and I tripped and I mean I
tripped. Flat on my face, black eye, bruised shoulder and a
knee that refused to bend for days.

OK I'll start at the beginning. I was in a great mood and
was taking a walk with my partner, our 2 dogs, and three
neighborhood kids that have adopted us. We were joking
and generally having fun when a truck comes down the
road. My dog Maggie a Poodle/Border Collie mix just
had to chase it. I am trying to break her of this very bad
habit. I was in the road so I just stepped toward the middle
to intercept her. Unknown to me Damian, the 7 year old
of the bunch, who is riding his bike goes to stop Maggie
and we sort of collided. I tripped over something on the
bike and boom, I fell.

The body is amazing I have been sleeping for days as it has
been taking care of itself. I see a little group of workers in
there with their tool box going to work on the damage.

Long story short...I haven't been painting. I go to the studio
and stare with an ice pack on my knee.

Just saw the date, happy Cinco de Mayo!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Robyn Gordon- Art and Meaning

What is the meaning of doing art for you?

Art is something I just have to do to feel normal.....or I end up
being miserable. The most important aspect for me is the
healing and spiritual aspect. Though I have always found
solace in my work it was only after losing my young daughter
to cancer that I realized the healing qualities of creating art.
It was my life saver then and many times since. I felt stronger
to deal with my emotions as well as the grief my family was
experiencing. I know without a doubt that it soothes and
balances me in a way that nothing else can. Just as one feels
relaxed and replenished after meditation, I feel the same way
after several hours of carving. Art is my meditation.

Robyn's blog address

Friday, May 1, 2009

Matt Lamb- Art and Meaning

Untitled, mixed media on paper, 2007

What is the meaning of doing art for you?

Katherine, thanks for asking me to participate in your project,which I think is an amazing idea!

To answer the question you’re posing, I feel that I have absolutely no control over making my art. It is a complete necessity to my psyche. To make art is the same as
deciding to breathe, eat, or walk. If I were not able to do it, or if the ability to do it was taken away from me because of physical impairments, it would be as if you’d
cut off my arms or legs. I’d be a useless engine. People might come visit me, but life wouldn’t be meaningful anymore.

I am part of my art. You could say I’m a slave to it, but I don’t see it that way. I believe it’s a blessing that’s been given to me. My attitude is that it’s part of the higher goals I try to manifest in my life: peace, tolerance, understanding, hope, and love. I channel those things through my perception of art and the message it brings to me and others, to either be loved, scorned, or disregarded.

I am blessed every day to get up and create art. Nobody has to wake me up to tell me to go to my studio. People ask what I do for my vacation, and I say, “I’m always on vacation, because I’m making art. It means everything to me. It makes my life a great journey and pilgrimage.

Thank you for the opportunity to contribute to your blog. I’d also like to invite you and your readers to look at my blog,

Up, up, and away,