From magical realism

“The Fool” in progress contd.

Worked really late on this next stage of The Fool. Its different than my usual work though there are definite elements I am more familiar with like the stretched leg and the fish, and even the carpet if I keep it. Am loving the imaginative stretch!

I got rid of the huge sun since it was too busy and took away from the impact of the Fool. Its still there, but not overpowering everything else. Color always changes everything, IMHO. I have to be and am willing to simplify as compared to a line drawing.

"The Fool" tarot card in progress by Bea Garth, copyright 2016
“The Fool” tarot card in progress by Bea Garth, copyright 2016

I am definitely relating with the Fool given all my late hours recently… I plan to get started earlier this evening in hopes I can get this done in a day or two.

Fool Card w/ background in progress…

I made some more progress with the Fool tarot card last night. I put in a lot of the background. I decided at the last minute to put in the red earth to balance the meaning as well as the pix.  The idea is several planes of reality mixing with each other.

"Fool" tarot card in progress w background colors by Bea Garth, copyright 2016
“Fool” tarot card in progress w background colors by Bea Garth, copyright 2016

“The Fool” Tarot card in progress with acrylic on faces etc.

I worked on my tarot card (“The Fool”) late last night after the debates. Somehow this card seems very appropriate at this time of crazy politics from both sides, IMHO!

I had to enlarge the width of the painting a tiny bit so it will make the right size card when reduced down. Thankfully I could since its on watercolor paper…and I just use blue painters tape to hold the paper down.

I decided to go ahead and use acrylic paint.  I have found that acrylic is much more durable than watercolor or gouache.  For instance, I have a wonderful painting of the almost mythic Wild Ox that got ruined due to my studio being too damp, and that was in San Jose, CA!! (Yes sometime I need to make another one…).

"The Fool" acrylic on faces & appendages work in progress by Bea Garth copyright 2016
“The Fool” acrylic on faces & appendages work in progress by Bea Garth copyright 2016

Plus if I need  to go in and change things, with acrylics I can do so without sweating it. I have found the acrylics stay cleaner and are easier to frame too.

So as you can see, last night I decided to work on the faces etc. first. And in a few, I will be working on it again. Maybe work on the Sun and background before the rest..  We will see! I let my subconscious guide me in these matters. Its always fun to see where it takes me!

On Changing the Designation of my Art

I have been musing about what style is it I exactly have–at first I thought it should be called  “Ancient/Modern/Surreal Art.” But now realize  “Goddess/Surreal Art” is better. “Goddess” is inclusive of both the ancient past and issues of ecology as well as how we feel and relate. In addition, often the women depicted in my art are powerful in subtle ways (though its not just the women!), thus incorporating both ancient and contemporary feminist values. And Surreal given how much I tend to add extra joints plus combine personal or mythic  symbols and  unusual environments and color.

Intensity acrylic  Bea Garth LR
“Intensity” acrylic on canvas by Bea Garth

Yes it is true, I  obsessively focus on feelings expressed in body language.  To tell the truth, part of my obsession no doubt is influenced by the fact my mother  simply could not read body language at all.  I have thus had to learn what body language means on my own. It has not been a given like it is for most people. My art thus helps me  figure out what this or that movement or expression means. In so doing I believe it is also helps the viewer since many of us may miss these nuances of expression otherwise.

Both of my parents worked as archaelogists when I was very young. Thus I have been influenced by ancient art from an early age–and certainly its influence shows up in my artwork. I was  exposed to Native American art here along the Columbia River in the Pacific Northwest as well as ancient and indigenous art from around the world as a child.  In addition I was very much influenced by my great Aunt Lottie’s amazing artwork and rugs she brought back from the Philippines.

Further I’m  very much interested in  imagery inspired by Carl Jung‘s notion of the Collective Unconscious as well as the New Age Arts such as Astrology and the Tarot.

I see the changes beginning everywhere: spontaneous expressions of Love rather than Hate, Renewables rather than robbing the Earth of its finite resources, values of Nurturing the Earth rather than killing off its plants, animals and oceans etc. The thing is that we are all connected.

I believe the Alienated isolated individualist is becoming an Icon of the Past. Of course, the old Paradigm is not going out without making a huge struggle to stay Top Dog. So this is not an easy time. But I believe we are winning on the side of making progressive change simply because we have to in order to survive.

"Dragon's Lair" pencil and ink sepia by Bea Garth, copyright 2000
“Dragon’s Lair” pencil and ink sepia by Bea Garth

It is my hope my art can make some small difference in helping create this paradigm change by expressing some of these new values while reconnecting with the ancient Goddess  in a new and contemporary way, by having the Goddess and the patriarchal God finally begin to work together rather than be at odds.

It is my opinion we simply cannot forget what we have gained through science, technology etc. However we have to temper those gains with the realization we live in a finite world and must learn to take care of it and each other as stewards rather than continue to destroy our world out of greed.

Now finally back in the Northwest, I am   focusing on being the  full time artist I was meant to be, and was, many moons ago. Though now hopefully, both healthier and wiser.

To keep at it, I will need your support, whether  just as a friendly “like ” or note, or a purchase of some of my sinuously expressive Goddess/Surreal art.

If you get a chance, please check out the blog pages as well as the art pages too of course! And feel free to contact me at bgarthart@gmail.com in case you would like to purchase (or show) some of my artwork.

Blessings,

Bea Garth

bgarthart@gmail.com

Picnic at Sundown

I finally finished the pen and ink I shared with you all a few days ago. Its now transformed

"Picnic At Sundown" by Bea Garth, copyright 2016, mixed media
“Picnic At Sundown” by Bea Garth, copyright 2016, mixed media

with color and a few other additions–though to do it justice I really should do a version of it as a painting on canvas. We had a picnic at the beach last week during sundown, thus the colors and the theme…

I decided to let my natural surrealistic tendencies to come in with more force by adding the Earth Sprite reaching towards the Tree’s all knowing Eye. I almost called this piece “Connected” since that is the energy I was trying to express, how we are connected to the Earth and the Universal Spirit around us.

And yes its mixed media (ink and watercolor pencil and colored pencil) on watercolor paper.

“Music Genie” painting in progress…

"Music Genie" painting in progress, by Bea Garth copyright 2015/16
“Music Genie” painting in progress, by Bea Garth copyright 2015/16

This will be one of my first projects I get back to when my studio is done (which should be soon!!): the painting “Music Genie.” I had to quit working on it in order to focus on fixing up our old house to sell and then our move north. The painting was inspired by my boyfriend (now husband). I had made a pen and ink drawing (please see below) and then later decided to make a painting from it. Its all about music and the altered state it inspires. The Genie emanates from out of the music, which really makes sense given my husband’s trance like state when it comes to composing music.

Yes I am now thinking I should call the type of art I do “Magical Realism.” I have long felt a kinship with the art in Mexico and South America for starters, although as said, I also have many other influences too. Feedback on this? Is “Ancient/Modern/Surrealist” better??

 

 

Music Genie

This is the pen and ink drawing I did before working on a painting inspired by it last fall. I

Music Genie pen and ink 2013
“Music Genie,” pen and ink by Bea Garth, copyright 2014

made the drawing of my boyfriend (now husband) playing his stringed instruments. A couple of months later he got together to play music with two of his friends. They are still at it and quite amazing, IMHO! I intend to finish the painting once its unpacked. Still setting up my studio in the garage here in Vancouver, but made great progress the other day.