Fine Art America!!

Finally!  A page on FAA.

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/the-muse-sky-evans.html?newartwork=true

The muse painting.  Oil on Canvas 2.5'x3'

The muse painting.
Oil on Canvas
2.5’x3′

I just downloaded one image but it was a client request… so that’s something.  Just wanted to share.  I’ll be posting more about this later after I get the whole gallery downloaded.  Hopefully this pans out. If you want to buy art and support an artist, Fine Art America is the place to do it.  Well, I know there are other places…  I keep thinking of things like Kickstarter too and wondering what kind of amazing project I could do… hmmm.   What is a muralist to do???  By all means, weigh in.  I’m willing to do community projects with fundraising venues.  Actually now that I think about it, I have done my share already.  But they usually involved teaching.  Time for something large, noteworthy and very, very interesting.  It’s been awhile since I crawled up on a roof and painted something seen from the local airport!

One should probably not bring children up there.  That would be just fine.

horseroof

Seattle @ Night

SEATTLE@NIGHT

Several years back I was approached by a local nightclub owner for a mural.  While I  love painting murals, they have a habit of eventually being painted over; which may be great for the new owner of whatever wall has now been transformed, but not so much for me.  I don’t know if I will ever get used to the notion that my artwork may be scrubbed out by a fresh coat of paint.  I realize public art (of which most murals are) can be transitory, but rarely do I get any input as to how long or by what decision that temporary status is given.  I may have released the need to interpret my art to others, but I have yet to let go of it’s destruction/transformation at the hands of others.  I’m working on that.

All this prefaces my suggestion to the owner that the mural become instead a large canvas that could be moved when and if the nightclub ever undergoes renovation.  We agreed, I created a sketch for approval, the commission was negotiated and I went to work.

seattleSketch

Seattle sketch

At the time, I was a professional color consultant for a Benjamin Moore retail outlet as well as working as a painting contractor.  BM had a new product line that I found pretty impressive and decided to paint the mural using these new, very dense and very opaque  latex house paints.  Their new line of paints was called Aura and they were being showcased nationwide in the BM trade publication Profiles as well as a variety of marketing outlets.  Seizing the chance for self promotion, I contacted the company magazine and told them what I was doing with their paint.   Which led to this featured article:

My first national magazine article!

My first national magazine.

This project was the biggest thing I’ve ever had in my studio.  The studio itself isn’t that large, so a huge canvas was a challenge.  I pushed all the tables and work surfaces out of the way to make room.  When working large, you need space to be able to step back and see your work but I was hampered by the size of my studio.  I still have a desire to enlarge the space, but that will have to wait.

9 feet long... barely fits!

9 feet long… barely fits!

The other challenge was working with house paint.  I used to be such an artistic snob.  In college I had even learned how to grind my own paint, so quality ingredients was embedded in my idea of who I was an artist.  But I was a few years out of school at the time, and well past my art teaching days.  I’d learned to “make do” and freed my mind from snobbery to the possibilities of alternate mediums.

While Benjamin Moore isn’t paying me for this endorsement (though in the past they actually have)  I’ve gotta say that Aura is excellent paint.  Very high quality, gorgeous color and great coverage.  I mixed my own to create my palette, and used extra pigments not generally available to the public.  You can ask your paint store to sell you tinting agents, they are designed to be used with house paint, so while you can mix your own colors, don’t use them in other brands or types of paint.  Warning: tints are super strong.  Think of them like bouillon cubes… a little goes a long way.

Anyway, the challenge of the paint was how fast it dried.  Aura products are designed to dry fast so painters can get in and get the job done.  I’m predominantly an oil painter so anything that dries in less than a week is hard for me.  This stuff was dry in minutes so I had to work fast.  When you work fast, brush strokes become very fluid… there’s no time to coax your colors into being.  No sweet talk here.  Wham bam…. well, you know the rest.

The result was energetic and electrifying.  And one of the best things I’ve ever done.

Seattle@Night

Seattle@Night

PS:  Thank goodness I had the foresight to paint on canvas.  The nightclub shut down a year later and the painting was moved to a martial arts/art gallery in Eugene.  Weird combination of venues, but it actually worked in that space!