Art quotes

"For the last 20 year period I've been working with ideas conceived as a child." -Red Grooms

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Endurance and Faith to Reach the Goal

       When we face challenges we often have doubts and, well ok maybe fear of the effort we put out and a hope for satisfactory outcome. Along with the angst we have to throw in the mix a bit of faith. I’m referring to the enormous amount of planning and hard work to put together two quality art shows back to back in just a few weeks. 
Cooling of the Dunes, 24x20, award winner
now on display at
Michigan Economic Development Corporation

       The effort reminded me of one very pleasant summer day when we had the joy of taking our four-year-old grandson fishing, fishing his way. Mom, Karla, gave us this itty bitty butterfly net that Simon wanted to use. Who are we to refuse a four-year-old his dream?  Here’s where the faith part comes in. He was sure he would catch a fish, his fish. We took him to a local beloved park with a dock and plenty of hungry swimmers. He brought a bag of stale bread to enhance the task. You see, he was fearless and had faith in his adventure.
        The dock was floating about two feet above the water, so Helene hovered inches from the excited confident child. He flung a chunk of bread and watched the surface churn into froth of water and sparkling scales. The net came out as he leaned toward the edge of the deck scooping this way and that each time coming up empty. The process was repeated over and over with his confidence still in tack. The stale bread was coming to an end but the little person kept dipping his tiny net into the water where a few fish lingered. Time went by. We worried. How would we let him experience, well defeat? Nervously we watched his continuing attempts. Suddenly a shout of joy vibrated across the lake, “I caught one!”
Caught eating a piece of bread.
 Little hands eagerly revealed a surprised shiny little guy laying in the net. After carefully touching the squirming fish and showing his prize to people on the dock he gently placed the beautiful wiggler back into the water saying, “There you go, mister.” 

       We need such a joyful outlook on life; his four year world is void of doubt and bolstered by his child like faith in catching that elusive fish. We too have to know that through steady endurance we have done what we could to bring to life the challenging art shows. We need to have the faith of the little beauty on the dock dipping and dipping, confident in his expected outcome.
Red Bluff, Joel F. Ellis signature painting
Currently on display at Michigan Economic Development Corporation
Lascaux Nights, homage to cave artists of Lascaux, France
36x48 acrylic on display at Cycling Salamander, Charlevoix MI

Gravity, 16x20, on display at Cycling Salamander
        Thirty six paintings from Joel Ellis Art can be seen at two worthy venues in Michigan this Summer – Twelve impressions of Michigan’s glorious dunes are exhibited Monday through Friday 8 to 5 at  Michigan Economic Development Corporation) 300 S. Washington, downtown Lansing, Michigan.
On Hold, 16x20, impression of boats caught frozen in Michigan waters
Currently on display at Cycling Salamander, Charlevoix, MI
       If you are enjoying Michigan’s beautiful “Up North” near Charlevoix, you may want to check the house gallery of  Cycling Salamander fine arts on U.S. 31 for 24 abstract expressionistic Joel Ellis works on display through September, 10 to 6 daily, Saturday 10 to 5, Sunday 12 to 4.

Happy August, Joel

Monday, August 1, 2016

Dog Days on Hot Michigan Dunes

       We are in the dog days of summer, twenty days before and twenty days after cirrus the Dog Star rises at the same time as the sun. Now that we got 
Sylvie's Beach 24x36
Google search out of the way let’s just say it is hot. We tried a trip to Lake Michigan for a sand dune refresher but the sand and sun was way too hot even with a breeze. After a few hours of roasting in the sun and being dusted with sand we got the dune photos we needed. Looking back to the beauty of The Lake as we were leaving, even in the heat, is a good day.
        The usual question viewers of my paintings often ask is do I paint out in nature. From the above summer heat experience I can reflect on Van Gogh, dune, sand, bugs, and twig scratches all inflecting damage on his fresh paintings and from the safety of my studio, I can say with a firsthand experience, I prefer the studio.

But just go and paint out-of-doors on the spot itself! Then all kinds of things happen; for instance, I had to wipe off at least a hundred or more flies from the four paints you will receive, not counting the dust and sand, not counting that when one carries them across the heath and through the hedges for
Blush 20x24
several hours, some thorns will scratch them, etc. Not counting that when one arrives on the heath after some hours’ walk in this weather, one is tired and exhausted from the heat. Not counting that the figures do not stand still like professional models, and that the effects one wants to catch change with the progressing day.
    W.H. Auden’s  VanGogh  A self-portrait

        Using photos that I captured puts me back in the environment to be able to convey the moment and the experience has deeper importance.  For all the artists that paint out of doors, or plein air, I can only offer my congratulations for your efforts in overcoming the challenges nature may have hurled your way.  
        And for the dog days of summer, well let’s remember Winter and try to carry on.
        As you enjoy travels in these summer days please consider a stop to enjoy art – the creations from the artists’ soul. There are two shows for Joel F. Ellis art this summer: In mid-Michigan, downtown Lansing, I have over a dozen paintings at the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, 300 S. Washington, Lansing, Michigan. And wouldn’t you know it, these are all expressions of dunes. I love dunes.
Spring Marsh Song  36x36
       The second show goes up this Sunday, August 7, at Cycling Salamander fine arts gallery on US 31 just seven miles south of Charlevoix Michigan. The gallery owner asked for more abstract paintings and some large ones. What a good opportunity to share these colorful expressions. We hope you will get a chance to visit these exhibits through September. All the work is original, of course.

Enjoy your art this summer, 
Nautilus  24x24