Tag Archives: Robert Genn

A Way of Communicating

“Painting is a way of communicating vision and experience so that it reaches beyond a single moment in time. What fills our hearts and spills over must be shared.”
– Stormy Bailey

Blue Harbor  40" x 40" work on canvas  ©2014 Deborah T. Colter

Blue Harbor 40″ x 40″ work on canvas ©2014 Deborah T. Colter

What fills our hearts and spills over must be shared.”

Please allow me to share a new painting recently finished from the studio. Blue Harbor consists of multiple layers of acrylic paint, paper and collage elements. It is built on a canvas substrate which is stretched around a birch wood frame.

To my eye, a painting needs to have rhythm, balance, harmony, life, a spark of magic. Making paintings requires a great deal of fearless trust in the process of creating.

To create something, really out of nothing, and see it transform into a piece that is alive with energy, exciting and intriguing is my main objective. Color, pattern, textures and other various elements need to meld into a compelling language all their own. I invite you to fall in love with the unknown.

“My paintings evolve organically from life’s everyday glances. Rather than trying to force my will on them, I give them total control. Each layer determines and guides the next.”
-Dion Archibald

Blue Harbor is available from the Artist.

Selected Quotes from Robert Genn’s Art Quotes: The Painter’s Keys Resource of Art Quotations

Copyright © 2014 Deborah T. Colter. All rights reserved.

The Color of Love

“Through some memory, feeling, experience, the passion wells up and spills into my palette; it mixes with my paint. And the paint tells me what to do. I listen. I act on it.”
Ann Dettmer

Seduction 1399  40" x 30" work on canvas

Seduction 1399   40″ x 30″   work on canvas

“February is the month associated with the color purple and the birthstone for those born is February is Amethyst.” Purple is also said to be uplifting, calming to mind and nerves, It offers a sense of spirituality and encourages creativity.* In my experience the color purple has a very strong effect on art viewers. You either love it or hate it  – no middle of the road with purples. Personally I find the color to be exciting and passionate – the color of love. It feels warm and comfortable, seductive in its beauty. How does purple make you feel?

“In our life there is a single color, as on an artist’s palette, which provides the meaning of life and art. It is the color of love.”
Marc Chagall

Seduction 1399 is available from the Artist.
Selected Quotes from Robert Genn’s Art Quotes: The Painter’s Keys Resource of Art Quotations
*(http://arts-humanities.squidoo.com/allaboutpurple)

Copyright © 2014 Deborah T. Colter. All rights reserved.

The Impression it Creates…Color!

“A color is as strong as the impression it creates.”
– Ivan Albright

Beyond the Boundary 36″ x 48″ work on canvas ©2013 Deborah T. Colter

I write to you as the snow is piling up once again. It has been a cold and snowy winter but then again, it is winter isn’t it? I am grateful for the solitude and the time I can devote to my painting.

I have been thinking a lot about color. I find I tend to focus on certain groups of color for a time period and then rotate into something different. I love using bold color, color that grabs and holds the viewer long enough to beg a longer look. Karla Araujo writing for the Martha’s Vineyard Times wrote an article last summer about my work. She mentioned just this thought when interviewing me; “Color is extremely important,” she told The Times, pointing to groupings of archived paintings that range in hue from deep rusts and reds to royal blues and teals, citrons, and mossy greens. Color is what first draws the eye to Ms. Colter’s paintings. But it is the complexity of shapes and patterns that holds the viewer’s interest.” (read the whole article here)

In my pieces I build multiple layers of collage elements that create patterns and subtle shadowing. I often feel as though I am creating something out of nothing – transforming paper, paint, collage & mark making into a painting that is alive, provocative and thrilling is my goal. Color for me, provides an invitation to look deeper and longer – it is an invitation to breathe in the pure pleasure of the impression it makes on the soul.

What impression does color make on you?

“Just as there are connoisseurs of wine, there are connoisseurs of blue,”
said the French writer Colette.”
–Quote from the January 28, 2014 newsletter of Robert Genn

Painting is available from Artist.

A Controlled Magic…

“What I dream of is an art of equilibrium, purity and tranquility,
devoid of upsetting or troubling subject matter …”

-Henri Matisse

Controlled Magic 30" X 30" work on canvas ©2012 Deborah T. Colter

I regularly receive a studio newsletter titled “The Painter’s Keys” from fellow artist Robert Genn in Canada. It is always full of interesting thoughts on the business and pursuit of Art. The newsletter seems to magically arrive when I am searching for some particular answer… this time I thought I would share with you, a quote from the newsletter which jumped off the page at me… 

“Abstract understanding doesn’t mean arbitrary sloshing and messing. Abstract art is controlled visual magic based on laws and methodology. Abstraction generally involves implication, suggestion and mystery rather that obvious description. Like a good poem, a good abstraction attacks your feelings before your understanding. Abstraction within realism adds zest and excitement to otherwise dull subject matter. Abstract understanding takes time and patience.”

-Robert Genn
“Five skills worth learning”
Newsletter dated February 14, 2012

Painting is sold.

My Brushes are Resting…

“As artists, we must learn to be self nourishing. We must become alert enough to consciously replenish our creative resources as we draw on them –
to restock the trout pond, so to speak.”
Julia Cameron

brushes1My brushes are resting. It is the time of year I think we all naturally take inventory of many things. A time to reflect on the days gone by and look forward to the coming year. To count our blessings, to celebrate the season, to work through the successes and the failures we have experienced – a time to reflect on many things. I missed being in the studio working and I told myself I would get back in this week – thinking I could squeeze out a few solid days of painting – but the focus is just not there. I need to recognize that my muse, having a mind of her own, has gone on vacation.  I thought about Robert Genn’s insightful quote, “Never forget that the nurturing and preservation of your own muse is job one. Lose it and you may be losing a great deal.” Self nourishment of the mind, the body, and all the creative resources is so important. It is an emotionally packed time of year and sometimes it is best to just step back and reflect. To enjoy family and friends, count my blessings, to make cookies, to spend time with all the important people in my life, to remember those who have gone on, to celebrate the season and in doing that, “restock the trout pond, so to speak”.

Wishing you Peace, Joy and Inspiration now and in the coming New Year!

“Often the Muse will not respond to direct and logical requests.
She must be lured in with the playful and gentle.”
Jill Badonsky

Commitment, Confidence & Continuity

“There is a wonderful feeling when you walk into your own exhibition. You see the work as a true extension of yourself. Win or lose, your interests have led you to an accumulation of your personal expression, signed lower right, 
mounted to best advantage.” – Robert Genn

"Comfortable Bliss" 30" x 30" work on canvas

"Comfortable Bliss" 30" x 30" work on canvas

Next week my work will be featured at the Cousen Rose Gallery in Oak Bluffs. Owner Zita Cousens has exhibited my work since 1997. We met when I was waiting tables and she and her husband Mike used to come in for dinner on a regular basis. They always came late after Gallery openings and the other wait staff wanted out – I always volunteered to stay. After a time Zita found out I was a painter and asked me to bring in some of my work. From the beginning she believed in me. I was working very much off the beaten path of the other local artists who primarily sell representational work. She has stood behind my artwork through all of its growth and changes without ever questioning where it was headed. The Gallery celebrates 30 years of business this summer and in a constantly changing retail environment on Martha’s Vineyard, that is a remarkable accomplishment! Congratulations Cousen Rose!

Next Saturday night my work will be up – some new pieces and some earlier work not shown here before, and  I will walk into the gallery reception and Zita Cousens will have outdone herself in the modest space she has to present my work. For a few hours we will celebrate the exhibit and win or lose, sales or no sales, I will walk away knowing that the work is a true extension of myself, an accumulation of my own personal expression, represented by a Gallery owner who has always believed in me. What more could I ask for?

Cousen Rose Gallery
Martha’s Vineyard
71 Circuit Avenue
Oak Bluffs, MA 02557
508-693-6656 

Exhibit runs from July 18 – July 25, 2009 [work will remain in Gallery all summer]
Opening Reception Saturday July 18 5:00-7:00pm
Also this summer:
 
Saturday, August 22 – 7:00pm to 9:00pm
A Book Signing and Art Exhibit
Gwen Ifill – Moderator and Managing Editor of Washington Week  and Author of
“The Breakthrough: Politics and Race in the Age of Obama”

 The Gallery will feature work by Janice Frame & Deborah T. Colter

Above painting is available from the Cousen Rose Gallery.

Nurturing and Preservation

“Never forget that the nurturing and preservation of your own muse is job one. 
Lose it and you may be losing a great deal.”
– Robert Genn

"Ambitions Interface" 40" x 40" work on canvas

"Ambition's Interface" 40" x 40" work on canvas

I have been finding it very difficult to get into the studio these days. I have been inundated with all the stuff coming in. My two college students arriving home [with all of their various paraphernalia], the fresh outdoor air, and the recent dissapointing show trips, are my excuses. Stuff. Procrastination has a firm grip on my art world. Stuff. Inspiration and motivation seem to have taken a walk together and  I am left staring blankly into space. Stuff keeps coming in. Perhaps this is not such a bad thing. I enjoyed reading Tight Times Loosen Creativity  at nytimes.com. I am encouraged to read, Many artists …testifying that the recession had strengthened their commitment to their work or allowed them to concentrate on their art — since the time spent on side jobs had diminished — or had even been a source of creative inspiration.” Ok, I admit, I have not felt this sort of creative inspiration in my world [as of yet…]. I make a living through the sales and placement of my work – it is my only job. Stuff. It is what I do. More stuff. I took a deep breath when I read this piece and thought, hmm, perhaps I am not looking at the recession in the best available light. I have been studio bound for many months of the winter, I have been traveling to shows and marketing, blogging, twittering, and more stuff. I need to remember “…that the nurturing and preservation of your own muse is job one.”   Perhaps I need a break. Perhaps I need to make a little space for myself where I can think, nurture my muse, and not get inundated with other stuff coming in. 

“The hardest thing is to make this little space for yourself where you can think and not get inundated with other stuff coming in.”
-Catherine Yass

Painting is available from:
The Blue Heron Gallery
Wellfleet, MA