Colorful Fridays–Two Carl, Keep Calm Purple

Slide1

“But, luckily, he kept his wits and his purple crayon.” From Harold and the Purple Crayon (1955) (from Sensationalcolor.com)

If you want to know more about this deep rich clear purple, look to the artists. Only the artists have an appreciation for this purest purple. Dioxazine Purple is a mainstay for today’s flower and nature painting but is little known outside of artsy circles. Some users of printer’s ink may have a basic knowledge of Dioxazine Purple. But to find more about Dioxazine Purple, ask the artists who know.

Liz Powley of Inspired Gumnut has most of the background scoop on Dioxazine Purple. According to Powley, Dioxazine Purple is a derivative of coal tar and was discovered by two Carls, Graebe and Glaser, in 1872. Carbazole is the extracted chemical’s name used to create this luscious, velvety purple. (Maybe they should have called it Carl-bazole??). Most makers of artist’s paint have this purple listed as Dioxazine Purple except Daniel Smith. Daniel Smith’s lists Carbazole Violet as a purple with, “intense,vibrant color,” and it “can invent an iris petal with each stroke.”

Color Curriculum from the American Society of Botanical Artists (ASBA), features an article by Carolyn Payzant on the properties of Dioxazine Purple. Payzant describes Dioxazine Purple as, “one of the bluest shades of violet,”and says, “it mixes well with most any pigment.” Elizabeth Floyd, on her website, says Dioxazine Purple, “is a strong staining purple that can go a little crazy at times.” Floyd advises caution by starting with a small amount of paint on the brush as, “a little goes a long way.”

Fans of intense purples can be grateful to the Two Carls whose experimentation led to artistic abilities of reaching the highest of purple peaks. If the intensity and vibration of rich Dioxizine Purple becomes overwhelming, Zazzle.com offers a Dioxazine Purple mousepad with the admonishing words, “Keep Calm and Carry on.” If you find yourself overwhelmed by a wave of purple fury during an intense session of inventing iris petals, simply look down at your Dioxazine Purple mouse pad, take a deep breath, keep calm and carry on.

Here’s a demonstration of Dioxazine Purple by Liquitex:

Drop the Plod

Slide1

 

“One does not discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time.” (Andre Gide)

There is nothing scarier than an endless horizon line. Bobbing around in a sea with nothing in sight. Is it worth it to take off for new lands if the possibility of floating for long periods of time without seeing progress is directly ahead? It would be so easy to fly off the rails into crazy land. But what is the alternative? Staying stuck in the old safe place?

The old safe place is so boring. Plodding along from day to day, doing the same old thing, seeing the same old places, and on and on. Plodding along sounds the same as bobbing around in an endless sea? It’s not. The difference is the sea will eventually lead somewhere. That somewhere may be unknown. It may be exotic. It may be equally boring. It’s impossible to know until the actual arrival.

Setting out toward the broad horizon takes a strong measure of courage. The idea of new discoveries so is exciting if it wasn’t for that journey across the endless sea. That little journey thingy means letting go of the sight of the shore. It means letting go of the comfortable day-to-day plod. It means letting go.

Drop the plod. New discoveries are calling. Time to go for it.

 

Soaking up Enchantment

Slide1

“I do not understand how anyone can live without some small place of enchantment to turn to.” Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, author of Cross Creek and The Yearling

 

Do we, as artists, require a place of enchantment?  Can we create without a place of enchantment? Do we have to physically be at that place or can we go there in heart and mind? When I first asked these questions nearly a year ago, I wasn’t sure of the answers.  Since that time, I have to expand to ask these questions of all creative people.  I am more convinced than ever, that Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings was on to something.

Rawlings was a moderately successful New York writer until she moved to a small Central Florida orange grove near a place called Cross Creek. Eventually Rawlings wrote about the people of Cross Creek, FL. Her writings about life in the Florida orange grove rocketed Rawlings to her place as a treasured American icon after the movie The Yearling, starring Gregory Peck, hit the big screen. She drew her creative nourishment from the beauty of her place of enchantment.

For me, that place has always been Reelfoot Lake.  Though I now live almost 200 miles from Reelfoot, I get there as often as I can.  Sometimes I coerce friends to ride along with the promise of magical scenery and the best fried catfish known to man.  Occasionally, I get up early and throw Twinkie and my camera in the car and drive over for a brief afternoon, returning late that night.  But I don’t paint there.  I breathe in the energy, absorbing the air.  I take in the visual feast and snap some shots.  Later, back home, when I sit down to paint, I go back to Reelfoot in my mind.  I remember the sights, the sounds, even the smells.  But what  happens with the paint is more the memories from childhood.  The infrequent trips to Reelfoot never fail to stimulate the childlike sense of awe that makes Reelfoot a place of enchantment for me and probably always will.

Reelfoot is not the only place of enchantment for me.  Gardens can also stir up feelings of enchantment, especially butterfly gardens.  When focusing on the place of enchantment, the feeling and spirit of the place returns fully.  Rawlings knew what she was talking about.  We all need those places.  The question is, how many of us take enough time to soak up enchantment?  I know I don’t.  Currently, I’m overdue for a major soaking.

For more on Reelfoot go to:http://tnstateparks.com/parks/about/reelfoot-lake

Rat Party Messes

Slide1

“The day is coming where a single carrot, freshly observed, will set off a revolution.” Paul Cezanne (from The Painter’s Keys)

A look at another story on the sad state of the financial situations of art museums brings on more speculation as to how they have gotten into this position. Today’s story is on the Delaware Museum of Art’s potential sell off of a much-loved Winslow Homer work titled Milking Time. This news comes on top of the ongoing saga of the Detroit Institute of the Arts latest dilemma, as well as, the still unresolved downfall of the Corcoran Museum of Art and the Corcoran College of Art and Design.

 DelawareOnline.com has the story on the possible Homer sale. The Detroit Free Press is stating the last offer to turn over the DIA’s art to a group of non-profits has been nixed by the creditors and the unions of the city of Detroit. NPR has an article on the hold up of the Corcoran’s hand off to the National Gallery of Art/Smithsonian organization and George Washington University. None of these articles have said much encouraging about the individual situations, but it is the NPR article that may shed a little light on how this sorry state came to be.

 NPR quotes former Corcoran director David Levy as stating, “museums have to acquire more and more and more,” to stay in business. Further in the Levy quote is a reference to art students as, “scruffy kids wandering around downstairs.” Sounds like a costly fine buffet in the magnificent parlor is in progress, adding more and more scrumptious delicacies to keep the partiers happy, while the rats scurrying around in the basement are threatening to show themselves and spoil the party.   Why are we even having this party and who is responsible for encouraging the rat behavior? Maybe Mr. Levy has an answer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weekly Photo Challenge–Monuments

Slide1

I’m not sure what this monument is erected to outside the stadium where the Tennessee Titans play.  I’m pretty sure it is not a monument to football!  The sculpture is attached to the old frame of what, I think, was originally part of an old shipyard or shipping dock for commerce traveling on the river. It sits across the Cumberland River from Downtown Nashville.

 

Weekly Photo Challenge-Monuments