New Years

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Here are some images from New Years at Morro Bay taken by my little brother-in-law. They are some of my favorite photos of Tim and me.

Creativity

 
There is so much going on in my mind I can’t sleep!
When I do sleep I dream about everything.
 
I want to do so much and nothing at the same time.
I want to be creative and work on being artistic but I am too lazy.
 
Where has my motivation gone?
I’ll get inspired to make something, but then I become lethargic/
 
It this a rut?
I just need a muse
 
I need something to jumpstart my heart
My passion
 
Where is my soul?
It has ran away from this dull person
 

Sleep

Sleeping

Sleep, Megan Berry, 2013, oil on canvas

As you can tell I really have started liking to work to work with the figure. I find it interesting to make the figure in high contrast and to have it bleed out into the background. Is she there? Is she breaking out of the background or receding back? I enjoyed working on this piece because because I liked that any subtle change I made would make a huge change in the while figure. I learned that conture lines are very import especially when it comes to the figure. I went over the shoulder and triceps many times to get a natural look. I also learned that it important to keep an additional tube of the color your using incase you run out especially when you have a not-so-common color such as Transparent Oxide Yellow by Rembrant (which non of the local stores carry)!!!! It’s a frustrating thing trying to get other paints to act the same.

Making Tea

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Making Tea, Megan Berry, 2013, Oil on canvas

 

By far, painting has been my favorit class for Spring 2013. Which is funny because I hated it last semester, maybe it had something to do with choosing my own content. Making Tea is a first of a series that I worked on after Home. I was inspired by a Shins’ song, “Those to Come” particularly the line “Making tea in your underwear.”This painting went through many steps and processes  I learned quite a few things about myself: I love to work with the figure and to work in a monochromatic palette  I wrote an artist’s statement for Art Theory class that explains more in-depth.

ARTIST STATEMENT

Like many artists, I struggle with discussing about my own pieces. I think it is difficult because the ideas come from a deep place within us that is hard to access; for some it might even be completely inaccessible. Artists are motivated by things that are hard for us to describe. In an attempt to try and get myself to open up and talk about my work, I’ll talk about my process, form and content, and the ideal conditions I need in order to make my art.

For me as an artist, my ideal condition to be productive would be in a creative environment. Right now I work in a retail environment which seems to suck out my soul and leave me drained of any creativity.  I think that is one reason that caused me to go back to school after a couple of years of retail. If I had my utmost ideal conditions to make art, it would be in a school atmosphere making art in a studio with my peers, with a side job of  working at a small, local art gallery. I like working in a gallery with my peers because I get a sense of community and a place where I can bounce ideas off to people that know what I’m talking about. I feel that is hard to find outside of school. I would pick a small art gallery to work at because it would be a great place to see the art that I am passionate about. It would have to be a gallery with a high turnover rate of artwork though, because I feel like I would get bored and disinterested in the pieces if I saw the same work too much. I feel that these ideas are part of the reason of why I want to go into education. I want to share the experience I have here at school with others to get them interested in art, too.

I feel like I would work best in a classroom setting, because it is hard to make time at home to make art. In relationship with how Bell Hooks discusses the problems of making time, I feel like there is never enough time in the day to do everything. I get too distracted at home with trivial things such as retail work, house work, family, friends and my own procrastination. I really have to push myself to work at home. If I’m in a classroom, it forces me to work, which I like.

My process to make art changes from time to time depending on what I’m working on. Currently, I’ve been working on a set of paintings dealing with the figure. Initially I was inspired by a song lyric, but I ended up liking the content so much that I kept going with it afterwards. I start off with an idea of where I want to place the figure and set up the camera on a tripod to present the composition I want. At first, I used myself as the model in the photograph because there was no one else around, but now I do it because I like using myself as the model. I can’t picture someone else standing in for me. I set the camera on a ten second timer and pose myself in the photograph in many ways until I get the composition I want. I found that I have to personally take the photo; when I had someone else taking it, I wasn’t getting the results I wanted. After I have the composition I want, I then edit it in Photoshop. I change the photo to grayscale, crop and make it high contrast with an overexposed look to the point that it has a photocopied look. Then I transfer that image on my canvas using an acetate and projector. When I start painting, I start with a wash of turpentine and one color, which becomes the under-painting. Once that I has dried, I’ll go over it in another color, keeping a monochromatic look with the richness of the color underneath.

Content and form are a little bit harder to talk about because I am still trying to figure that aspect of art out. In my paintings I work with the figure, but in neither a non-realistic nor abstract way.  I keep the contours of the figure, but it is overexposed to the point that the figure’s skin is completely white, which bleeds into the background. Even though the figure may be fading into the back, the viewer is able to see the subtleties in the paint to tell that there is a figure there. As far as content, when I’m working on a piece, I have the idea of keeping the form minimal with very little features. I want the viewer to figure out what I am showing them. I like the idea of there being both a presence and absence of someone being there at the same time. The duality intrigues me and draws me to continue painting the same subject.

a FAIL start to wheel throwing

As you can tell learning how to throw on the wheel has been a challenge for me! Most of these pieces didn’t suvive.

progression of painting

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I’m getting experimental with my painting class. I wanted it to look like a Bonnard painting, but it ened up looking like a Van Gogh. I do like how it cam out, but I’m not sure if I want to keep painting this way.

This is where I grew up and had recently been torn down. I had been talking about it in class with other students, but when it came to critique  I got emotional. I surprised myself that I had that much emotion attached to the painting.

Here’s the original PANO_20121216_145833

the start of a new semester

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Façade at Broadway Studios

Façade  M. Berry Nov. 2012

Here’s me showing off my work at Broadway Studios during Art Hop in Fresno December 6, 2012

http://www.fresnoarthop.org/

I just got an easel to work on my painting for class for a painting due Tuesday . But JEBUS it takes up almost my whole wall!!! I guess thats expected when the painting is 4 x 3 feet!

Its a painting of my mom and sister in Mearle’s in 1985/6. I’m not done with it yet, I need to paint in a coffee cup, fix the baby’s face, fix up Mom’s face  and hair at least. I’m hoping to get more work than normal done at home, I always send todo better in a school setting.

The Design and The Stout

 

My town just recently got their very own BevMo! and has become one of the highlights of the town for Tim and me. BevMo! has more to offer than just beer, wine and liquors! Being a graphic designer and a lover of art this place gives my eyes multiple orgasms at the sight beautiful display of bottle labels. I can’t help but be drawn to well designed labels, that’s how you can tell the company is doing their job.

During my second visit to BevMo! a particular beauty caught my eye: New Belgium’s Imperial Coffee Chocolate Stout from the Lips of Faith Series. I was already a fan of The New Belgium brewery and coffee or chocolate stout, but I have never  have this specific one. I probably would have have gotten it, but that wasn’t what made me really get it. The design on this bottle it what did it for me. As soon as I saw it I had to have it just for the bottle.

And the beer was just as good! It was even better than the Double Buzz (coffe stout) that I’ve had a local brewery, which is very good too. I would say this is one of my favorite beers, at least in the stout category. You have to be in the right mood cause its a bit heavy and that makes it  a good winter dessert beer.

Here’s what New Belgium had to say about their stout:

“Serving up cold and jet black, this imperial stout should be taken seriously for about one minute as the dark foam builds. Then, enjoy its velvety chocolate-covered smoothness and delicious aroma of sustainably-grown, locally roasted coffee.”

I would rate it 4.75 out of 5