“Pretty In Pink And Black” – Demo Painting

Fine Art Painting
Fine Art Painting
“Pretty In Pink & Black” by Mollie Walker Freeman

“Pretty In Pink And Black” is the painting I actually did for the demo at the Loveland Museum Gallery. The one I was trying to write about the other day, in this post. The other painting, “Bird In The Woods,” was done for an instructional video. (Hmm…maybe I should post it?) Anyway, this painting was done using a photo reference, using my usual “upcycled” house paint. It’s painted on a type of particle board, which I sometimes use. It’s very easy to frame, but heavier than canvas.

I had a lovely time doing this piece, and I like the colors. I like color, and experimenting with various color palettes. In fact, I really don’t do any “drawing” per se. I just go right for the color. I’m inspired by color. Also, music.

What inspires you? If you are an artist, I’d love to hear what inspires your work. Is it poetry, imagery, a cause to express? Is it the work of particular artists? Spiritual themes? People or animals? Something else?

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Dance Paintings, “Awake My Soul”

Art - Painting
Art - Painting
“Awake My Soul” Painting by Mollie Walker Freeman 24″ x 36″

Dance expresses emotion, action, relationship, and has the ability to communicate what cannot always come through words. This beautiful art form captured my heart, and I will never recover. Four of my five children dance – everything from ballet to hip hop, and everything in between. Some of them have been dance teachers, all have danced in musical productions. All four of them have expressed worship through dance.

When they were young, I watched intently through the large windows at the dance studio. Our house was nearly an hour’s drive away, so we stacked classes and tried to do it all in a couple of days each week. Our family did not take up soccer or musical instruments back then. (Though music is part of why dance is so wonderful!) Dance was our obsession.

art - painting
“Lift Me Up” by Mollie Walker Freeman

My first ballet class happened at the age of 40, unless you count the single hour of class I tried in college. I am not able to do a lot, but after several years of attempting numerous types of dance, I have a pretty good idea about what it takes to be good at it. I have tremendous respect for the time, effort, and long term vision it takes a dancer to deliver those seemingly brief moments of grace and awe.

So, I began painting dancers a while back. They are, indeed, some of my favorite subjects. Unlike some of the classic paintings that feature dancers, such as the ones by Edgar Degas, I paint dancers dancing, caught in an instant of physical perfection and inspiration. It is a form of worship, for me.

“Bird In The Woods” Painting

Painting by Mollie Walker Freeman

Painting by Mollie Walker Freeman

The Loveland Museum Gallery is somehow able to get some really great shows, sometimes featuring really well known artists of the present and past. I’ve seen works there by Georgia O’Keeffe, Salvador Dali, local artists Laurie Zuckerman, and Richard Schilling, to name a few. (This gives you an idea why I love living here.)

That’s why, when Scott and I were invited to do a show there, in the lower gallery (read “basement”), we were thrilled and honored! About a year and a half ago, we displayed about 20 pieces in an exhibition entitled, “Zietgiest.” The show was a remembrance of our trip to Germany, to visit our one-time exchange student, Klara, and her family. I’m sure I’ll post about that in the future.

For today, I’ll post this painting I did during that show. Scott and I did a demonstration, each completing a piece in a couple of hours, bantering back and forth, while a couple dozen sweet folks sat and listened, and asked some great questions. A fine evening was had by all, and this is the painting I ended up with. It’s done in my primary medium, what I call “upcycled” house paint.

Painting a silhouette presents an interesting juxtaposition (there’s an art word for you) between foreground and background. The bird itself is the focal point, yet has no detail to speak of, while the background has all the color and some sense of detail. Anyway, I got to use some fun colors, like neon green.

P.S. What was I thinking? I did do this painting the same month as the demonstration. But, alas, this is not the painting I did for that event! I will have to do another post on that painting, which is called, “Pretty In Pink.”

“Drawn Out Of Water” – Painting Of Baby Moses

Painting by Mollie Walker Freeman
Painting by Mollie Walker Freeman
“Drawn Out Of Water” – painting by Mollie Walker Freeman, 30″ x 40″

If you know the story of Moses, you will remember that he was raised in the home of a king, by the daughter of the Pharaoh, king of Egypt. I think of Elizabeth Taylor, and the other Americans playing Egyptians in The Ten Commandments. It’s a pet peeve of mine, borrowed from my artist husband – Bible people, from Israel or some middle eastern locality being portrayed as very western-looking. The prophet Daniel, for example, who certainly was Jewish, was painted by one famous painter wearing a toga.

It occurred to me that it would be fun to portray the adoptive mother of Moses, an Egyptian woman, in a similar style to ancient Egyptian art. You know, the kind of imagery found among the artifacts from the pyramids.

This painting is what happened when I attempted to imitate the Egyptian style during a church worship service a few months ago. The theme of “water” comes up a lot in my work, too. There’s a lot of water in the Bible, so I suppose that’s why. As always, your thoughts are appreciated, anytime you’d like to share them. Thanks!

“Fishing Angel” Painting, AKA “How Long?”

Painting by Mollie Walker Freeman
Painting by Mollie Walker Freeman
“How Long?” by Mollie Walker Freeman  (SOLD)

Angels are not like we tend to portray them in Western culture. At least, that is my opinion, since I have not actually seen one in person. When I read of angels in the Bible, I always imagine their appearance. This angel was in my brain, and then on the canvas, in the form of a not-yet-finished painting before I recognized it in a passage from the book of Matthew.

In chapter 13 of Matthew, verses 47 – 50, go like this:

 “Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a fishing net that was thrown into the water and caught fish of every kind. 48 When the net was full, they dragged it up onto the shore, sat down, and sorted the good fish into crates, but threw the bad ones away. 49 That is the way it will be at the end of the world. The angels will come and separate the wicked people from the righteous,50 throwing the wicked into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Not exactly cheery, right? I don’t even  like to admit, often times, that verses like this show up in the Bible. But, I’m quite fond of the overall message of the Good Book. And, I actually believe the whole thing. Do I “get it” all? Of course not! I read it, though; I chew on it’s words darn near every day of my life. And I meditate on the imagery. It’s compelling. I can’t get over it.

I know in my heart that God is good, and that there are lots of things in this world that are not good. So, it makes sense to me that, at some point, God is going to separate the good from the bad, on His terms, and we will all see justice. This angel, from what I can tell, is longing for that day.

Art, Artists, Painters, And Everyone Else

Art, Artists, Paintings, People

When there’s and art college in town, everyone quickly learns to recognize the artists. Okay, it’s been a few years since I attended Kansas City Art Institute, but I suspect this hasn’t changed much since then. The art students are so interested in not conforming that it’s ironic. The worst possible way to look as an art student is “normal,” unless that’s your way of being a non-conformist in art school!

artists
That’s my non-conformist son, Joel, who is an artist in every sense of the word.

Well, we don’t really have to try not to fit in; we just don’t. But, all this non-conformism has its advantages. We artists tend to have a bit of the theatrical about us, too. We can often slip in and out of settings and situations, between tribes and collections of very diverse groups of folks. It’s kind of fun, actually. We can be excused, even admired (!) for our strange habits or appearance, upon the utterance of a simple statement of our profession/identity.

Here’s the thing: I like people – they are wonderful! I also disdain them. They are awful. I even feel this way about myself, on occasion. Yet, I cannot get enough of them. I live with people, visit people, watch people, and paint people. I also paint other things, but people are my favorite subject. Art is more than a reflection of life; it’s an expression of thought. It’s communication. And to me, it’s somewhat meaningless without an audience. I make art for people, often about people.

This blog is meant to be a place to display my artwork, which is mostly paintings. I may also include other artists, from time to time. You are invited to make comments or inquiries. I cherish your ideas! If not for you, I’d just keep my pictures in my studio. Welcome, and thanks for stopping by.

Art, Artists, Paintings, People
“Love Rules III” by Mollie Walker Freeman