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Day 108-Flak Photo Emerging Issues

January 3, 2010

I have been following the Flak Photo Tweets about an upcoming call for entries for emerging photographers. Seems the Magenta Foundation feels you must be 34 or under to qualify as emerging. There are an awful lot of posters who feel that emerging should define a photographers newness to the field, not their age. What do you think? The competition in question is the Magenta Foundation’s <a href="

Day 107-Below Zero

January 2, 2010

Well it was 5 degrees BELOW zero this morning according to my thermometer out on my deck!!!!!! How can that be? Officially the temperature was listed on-line as 5 degrees above zero. Could it be that much colder on the 5th floor?

Well, after a nice chocolate laced coffee and a few minutes with the New York times, it had warmed to 7 degrees. Boy, I am really not in California any more. But the bracing cold is kind of refreshing as long as the muffler, gloves and earmuffs are in place. I had to run off the the post office to mail in an entry for a local art exhibition… due date Jan. 6th. and stopped by Paneras for breakfast and ArtMart for art supplies.

I am busily working on my California images; contemplating some collaging. Will post pictures soon.

Len

Day 106-Happy New Year/Lake Cachuma

January 1, 2010

Well, 2010 has finally arrived. I wish all a good and prosperous year.

I am continuing my digital painting project with my latest piece, Lake Cachuma. I have spent many days relaxing by the water at this great recreation park in Santa Barbara County, California in the Santa Ynez valley (not too far from the late Michael Jackson’s Neverland).

Lake Cachuma-closeup

It is especially delightful during those hot dry summer days when the breezes off the deep lake are quite refreshing. I did camp here one night, although I am not really a camper, more of a fine hotel type (on a budget).
I hope I’ve captured the deep deep green of the live oak trees that create such a welcoming shade. The grasses are always brown (except late winter/early spring) and contrast nicely with the dark trees. The lake is very blue and very sparkling.

Back to work creating….
Len

Lake Cachuma

Day-105 Last of 2009

December 31, 2009

Well today is the last day of 2009, so I’d like to wish all of my readers a very creative and prosperous new year.
I spent the entire day today working on paintings from my vast collection of California photos taken over the last few years.
I like how these are coming out, but I must admit to having “painted” them on my computer. So they are, in essence, digital paintings that I can then either print directly on canvas or print on heavyweight paper. The first one I printed was on the heavy weight paper and it looks really good. I may do some after effects; applying some acrylic touches to heighten the painterly quality of each.
I’ve attached one titled “Live Oak Dream” which was inspired by the deeply dark live oak trees that dot the golden hills surrounding the Valencia California area. Let me know what you think.

Again, Happy New Year,
Len

Digital Painting

Day 104 – Brushes & Paint

December 30, 2009

Okay, since the new year is beginning shortly, I’ve decided to try something new. I have assembled various tubes of acrylic paint, brushes and a pallet. I will see what comes of it and let you know. For some time now I have had the urge to paint using my photos of California for inspiration. I plan on painting small as I really like either small or very large…. mid-sized is not as interesting to me.
I certainly am proficient in photography and using the computer to manipulate and heighten the photos, but they are still “works on paper” and must compete in the market place with paintings. I don’t want to abandon my photo background, just add another element to it.
I noticed that most of the work that sold in the last @140Hours art auction were paintings and I feel that collectors like to see the “hand” of the artist in the work. Photography can be more cerebral, I want to emotionally touch others and perhaps painting will help me connect. We’ll see.
I will report upon my success (or failure) and upload an image here to see what you all think.

Painting begins tomorrow!
Len

Day 103-Goals Continue

December 29, 2009

It is always a mystery to me how and why gallery owners/directors select specific artists and their works to represent. I heard a very enlightening interview today with Brian Clamp of ClampArt. The interview is only 16 minutes long and worth every word of it; see link below.

As I ponder my goals I must consider the need to continue to perfect my art. I feel a need to attract the attention of more collectors and galleries but foremost is the need to excel. And the only way to excel is to concentrate on my art; create something new each and every day of the week… sit back and pay close attention to each piece and edit into keepers and those that need more work. Solidify my vision…. what am I trying to say? I am working closely on that one because I don’t want to just make “pretty pictures”, I want to say something significant. My main interests are the natural environment, the scenic splendor of California, and how to preserve and share these wild and magnificent places with the world.

More later,
Len

Day 102-Goals for New Year

December 28, 2009

I have been thinking a lot lately about my goals, especially for the new year. Goals are a very good way to stay motivated.
I must say that my main goal is to get my California Dreaming series of works more recognized. Since this concentration on imagery of the California country side is a fairly new concentration for me, I need to spend more time actively getting it known.
Most of my prior art photographic works have been seen and exhibited but with my move to the Midwest, and my subsequent emotional need to concentrate on California, I am starting over…. more or less. I feel this blog is a good way to focus my ideas and intentions but I am not sure of how many people really read my blog.
I am on facebook and have just started a fan page there also, so come and be a fan of mine….

I was reading a great interview today with Laura Wzorek Pressley of CENTER (the Santa Fe photography institute). She sited common themes running through contemporary photography:
interiors
time passing/memory
loneliness/isolation
lyrical narratives
small towns
sexuality
the American West
recreation
collections
family
I am glad to see the American West listed….

more tomorrow,
len

Day 101 – SNOW

December 27, 2009

I am officially not in California! It is snowing here in the midwest and looks quite lovely. I know that it snowed in the mountains around Los Angeles, and I often drove up to see and play in it, but I couldn’t sit in my living room and watch the snow fall. It is kind of magical.
I poured through my mountain photos today looking for ones that included snow, but I could not find any. I was going to pay homage to the snow today by working on snow photos of mine from California. So I went out and took new photos today and am working on combining them (collage style) with earlier photos to see what I can come up with. Does this mean I am adjusting to the midwest…. becoming a hybrid Midwesterner/Californian??? Well, no… my heart is still in the hillsides and mountains that I spent so much time exploring and photographing.

More later,
Len

The First 100 Days

December 26, 2009

It is hard to believe that I’ve been writing my blog for a hundred days now! It has helped me tremendously in formulating my approach to art making. California is still front and center in my efforts to evoke my emotional attachment to that state… or state of mind, perhaps? I must admit to becoming a bit attached to the mid west in an attempt to remain grounded. But, if I had the chance, I would hightail it back asap!

This is a good time of year to reflect on the recent past and plan for the future. And to be thankful. I am thankful to have been able to concentrate on my art, I am thankful to have found

Days 94-99, Christmas Eve

December 24, 2009

Oh please forgive me for abandoning my blog for almost a week now. I was getting caught up in the 140 Hour art auction, then started baking Christmas cookies.
Being “child free”, without a need to buy toys, I always like to dive into the Holiday season with copious amounts of butter, sugar and flour. Trow in a few chocolate ingredients, like chocolate chips… and I am off and running. My cookie marathon lasted three whole days. I ended up baking 15 different varieties. I now have to set about giving most away. I have already sent off a box full to a dear friend back in California and given plates full to various service people in my proximity; local friends are next.

As my head clears, I am beginning to plan new photo projects. I have a full two files of spring poppy shots taken in the Antelope valley just north of Los Angeles near the Poppy Preserve. These are quite wonderful as the poppies were spectacular the year of my photo shoot.
It was an almost blinding orange as far a the eye could see. More on this later.

I guess some of you are wondering what all of the day numbering is about and don’t want to slog through old posts to find out…. so here is a synopsis:
I am a digital photo artist from Southern California but I am currently in the Midwest (a year long test). I have thousands of base photos of various California regions taken over the last ten years that I am working on while here. I am chronicling my process day by day on this blog as struggle to keep a connection with my beloved California. I take photos and manipulate them in Photoshop to create more emotive pieces that reflect my feelings for the place.

Happy Holidays to all,
Len