Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Down Memory Lane - by representational abstract painter Sue Scoggins

Part of the job of a commissioned painter is to guide the client and help the determine what they would like in their painting.  For this commission, the client originally said, "All I know is that my favorite color is blue and that I want something fun." As the artist, I had to determine where to go from there.  We sat for a while in the room where the painting (in this case, 2- 3'x5' paintings) would hang.  Whether they would be vertical, horizontal, size, etc. The room was completely blank accept for a sectional sofa, a few pillows, and a rug. This was a large family room.

I asked her what some of her favorite memories were.  Personally, I like to paint emotions/memories for my clients.  Paintings that remind them of pleasant memories in their life. She told me of her travels and I encouraged her to list her favorite places.  She wrote down..France, Germany, Italy, Hungary.....HELP!  Turns out her family had taken a river cruise the year before.  After much ruminating in my head and about 50 photos that she sent me via email, these are composites of European village memories that I came up with.  FUN!  FUN!



Friday, August 19, 2016

Fly Little Bird - by Sue Scoggins, North Carolina Painter


This has been going on for weeks. Transparent  layer upon layer.  A slight departure from the crazy energized paint slapping I usually do. It was one of those Emerald Isle sunsets that I had to run to...then I stopped.  It's calm drama...I couldn't speak.  I had to give it my respect.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Out of the Darkness - by Sue Scoggins, North Caroina Painter

About 15 years ago, as a caregiver, this completely bewildered person was forced to find a new career. I purchased a little box of beginning oil paints and 3 brushes.  It began with trying to capture happy moments...moments from my own life...but more often moments that I experienced through others.  Now, it has become a personal form of expression.  I paint emotion! I paint a hug. Respite. I paint authenticity.  I paint sincerity.  Painting was a gift that saved my life and provided a beautiful outlet while caring for my dear hubby suffering from Alzheimers Disease.  It provided an income. It provided a refuge. It provided passion and purpose!

Life is not a random bit of circumstance.  We all have an intrinsic worth to our lives and were uniquely and beautifully designed for a purpose. No one escapes suffering. Now...as an act of gratitude for what was given to me...I must share the hope than can come from suffering.

My mission is using the visual arts to share hope..that there is something greater than our circumstances.  It's much more than paint on canvas or a pretty picture. It's not forced. It's not perfect colors or color coordinated schemes for decorating.   A painting should make you sing.  It should speak out to you.

I am not selling ART.....I am selling HOPE.

Out of the Darkness
36x36 oil on gallery wrapped canvas

Monday, August 8, 2016

Bye Bye Sabbatical - by North Carolina Painter, Sue Scoggins

Six months have passed and it's blistering hot outside. The sabbatical is over. The urge has begun! Some say artists don't read...but this one does.  Reading, studying, and meditating on WHY I paint. Why not spread a little cheer working at Whole Foods, volunteer at elder care facilities, build for Habitat, bake for sick people?  Why not travel again? Why not play the ukulele?

It finally dawned on me that the thing I do best is paint. (It's a bit too late for the corporate world and  I'm a terrible baker.) What I CAN do is paint. It's a gift and my passion. Visual arts is one of the greatest ways for me to spread hope. And although it is a gift, it requires a lot of time, work, focus, solitude, and a heart load of spirit. When I see massive cloud formations or fields of abundant wildflowers, I become speechless. My emotions become almost giddy like a child.  I stop all conversation, sit in awe, visions start scribbling around in my brain, then I go running back to my canvas. If I don't get it out....I dream about those images.  Inks have got to fly and flow!

So...while I'm waiting for a shipment of large canvases to come in, I'm creating mediums paintings.   The oils will begin soon.   Stay tuned!                                    

thinned oil on birch above

acrylic inks violating the canvases below



Friday, June 17, 2016

PAINTER'S BLOCK - by North Carolina Painter, Sue Scoggins

"LAY DOWN YOUR BRUSH".  It's as if I heard that voice clearly this past January.

2015 was a great year for this painter.  I worked like a dog! Had passion. Had shows. Deadlines. Commissions. When the last commission was painted in mid-December..that was it! I put down the brushes, breathed a sign of relief and enjoyed the holidays.  Then it happened.  NOTHING!

Mid January, there was still nothing. For the first time, I had serious painters block. My galleries were full. I had a supply of inventory waiting in the wings.  It was as if the slate in my mind had been wiped clean.  For a while, I had been wanting to progress, become more complex in my painting, find new and meaningful subjects. Move up a notch. Find new purpose.  I became confused with futile attempts.  Then, "Lay down your brush", clearly was heard.  So, I decided to do just that.  I would just wait.

For 6 months, I did not paint. Didn't really even miss it. Kept wondering what would come next.  Illustrate that children's book I had started years ago? Write a memoir? But nothing came. Nothing at all.

During those months, I read two excellent books. The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield and Dancing on the Head of a Pen, by Robert Benson. Both are recommended reads for those with a mental block in doing their work.

So now, it's mid-June.  Emerald Isle, the beautiful coastal town, is my home for the summer. That's where my painting began years ago. On June 3, I remember it well, a huge mammoth storm cloud came in.  It took my breathe away. So I ran inside, grabbed a canvas, ink, paints and slashed away with color. It was totally interpretive.  No expectations.  In fact, painted TWO. I don't even know if they are finished.  They may never be finished.  But.....it felt good.  Really good...even if just for a moment.




Sunday, January 24, 2016

SOUTHERN LANDSCAPE - by North Carolina Painter Sue Scoggins

Discovery
40x60 oil on gallery wrapped canvas
It's been a challenging January.  Don't know about the rest of you, but, the creative juices just haven't been flowing.  Recreating yourself, staying motivated, energy, spontaneity.....it's doesn't just come on command.

But, after putting down my brush, meditating, picking up my feet (as in exercise)...breathing in some fresh air..getting the blood moving, the energy is beginning to flow.

This painting was completed just before Christmas.  My last painting of the year.  It was like a serious  calculous problem, a jigsaw puzzle and SO MUCH FUN!  Perhaps one of my missions in life is to spread color in this world...this side of Heaven.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

TRANSITIONS - Abtracted expressionism - by Sue Scoggins, Southern Landscape Painter

Well, the shows are over this year.  The painting in Italy is now in the past.  It's time to settle in and think of the future. I have this insatiable thing that goes on inside me....I have to be challenged, create, learn. Can't just sit and watch tv...in fact, I don't even have a tv.

So, I've been dabbling in going more abstract.  I still have to have a lot of movement in my paintings and also a lot of color.  But, maybe now, the color will be a bit more subtle.  Maybe from far away the painting will look like one color or maybe two.  But when you get up close you'll see thousands of little nuances.  Painting smooth and flat has never been my forte. I just don't see how people do it.

So, this year will be a year of challenge.  Of learning.  Of wunderlust to see new ideas.  Maybe this will be a year of studying art.