Archives for posts with tag: Nature

Life Lines. 38″x38″ Oil on canvas. Darlene St Georges

Opening with an evening vernissage next Saturday June 16 at 7pm, please join us and Darlene St Georges for her solo exhibition, From Left to Right.

Darlene’s work is incredible, intricate, thought-provoking and enveloping. As with all excellent painting, it should be experienced rather than just seen.  Washes, glazes, and layers of oil paint create a sublime surface of incredible depths for the viewer.

Of her work, Darlene says:

“I call this selected collection “From Left to Right”. These works explore the form, movement, light and energy of the organic in nature – releasing me into an aesthetic of the epiphany. The intention of these written works are to offer the viewer a point of entry for reflection.

My aim in creating these works was not to represent what I think but rather to explore what I know – somewhere inside me about the essence of things. It has been a process of connecting with my intuition and responding to those moments of epiphany – experiences I have had throughout my life where everything seems to simply connect in a fleeting spark, which alleviates and elevates me. In this position and I am released from the left side that orchestrates the list, schedules and plans that shape my life from day to day, month to month, year after year.

While painting I enter through the right into an alternative space-time dimension; seeing through and beyond into the essence of things. Here, I connect with and develop my intuitive, metacognative and metaphorical knowledge, which activates my imagination and ignites an energy that engages my whole being. For me this is an aesthetic of the epiphany that I can conjure up that affords me with a broader vision of what is possible, which I carry back into the world.”

Flora. 12″x12″ Oil on canvas. Darlene St Georges

Exhibited alongside the paintings will be some of Darlene’s poetry; work that further transports you to another time, thought, and place. This one, in particular, speaks to me about painting, creativity, and being connected to our natural world:

Immutable schedule of something imprecise.
I vanish;
transfixed and motionless, without restraint.
I recapture enchantment and dreams of splendor;
labyrinths of memories wash over my body;
remote cusps and oxygen.

From Left to Right continues to July 7


***
See the online version of the show here.*** Work is all available for purchase, in person or online.

Vernissage June 16, 7-9pm at Fleurbain, 460 St Catherine St West Unit 917

Hours Thursdays 3-6pm, Saturdays and Sundays 12-6pm

See Darlene’s catalogue of the show here.

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Deer enjoy a little munch in Comox, BC, Canada. Photo by Natasha Henderson

It’s April, and vibrant life is appearing all around us again. Spring has certainly sprung (at least across North America!)

Everywhere there is an urban setting, there is nature too. That little weed pushing its way through the sidewalk crack, the gull resting on top of a lamp-post, sunlight reflecting off buildings… animals, plant-life, and the Elements all co-exist with our Urban presence.

Our photo theme for April is The Contrasts of Urban Nature. If you are a fan on our Facebook page, you can upload a photo to our wall. Or, if you prefer, email us at fleurbain@gmail.com with your photo that reflects this theme, your name, and a short description of the pic.

April… finally, oh finally!

Crate One. Photomorph and collage, 2009. Copyright Greg Howes.

 Greg Howes continues his story of artistic evolution, the third in a three-part series. The first installment is here, and the second is here.

The next stage in my artistic evolution came when I started to arrange objects in advance of a shot, and then rearrange them for each separate shot. I used various arrangements, sometimes groups of objects such as shells or leaves, sometimes even people to give my work a theme or location.

The Ethereal Garden. 2009, photograph. Copyright Greg Howes.

This brought even greater control of my pictures. I suppose this was when they became “designs” in the true sense of the word, rather than myself “capturing” random images and working on them without altering them in situ. That said, I still use random selection as the possibilities are infinite.

History Today Yes SD. Collage, 2010. Copyright Greg Howes.

Whilst we are on the subject of natural selection… I now felt that I was armed with a new-found power of expression, and I started to return to my punk roots. I blended punk sloganeering (which had so inspired me in my adolescence), collage, and Darwin’s theory of natural selection into the mix. This seemably at first unlikely brew was based on the idea that punks (I use the term in the English sense of the word) were some sort of cultural (and visual) mutants that nature and society needed to inflict upon itself in order to grow and evolve. This notion also involved a “back to the future” type approach (call it a “throw back”) portraying an inescapable need to connect to our primal anthropological urges for decoration and tribalism, and our (and natures) need for constant adaptations to a changing environment.

I cannot deny that part of my motivation for unleashing this conceptual mix into the world was the irritating rise of the great enemy of the intellect “Creationism”, which in my opinion has as much relevance in the modern world as the Flat Earth Society. How ironic is it that my love of collage started in an erratically attended Baptist Sunday School for the under 8s.

KK22. Collage. The first that Greg made during his current course. Copyright Greg Howes.

Presently I feel that the artistic world is my oyster. That’s why I am currently engaged in a part time mixed-media course at Gorseinon College, Swansea south Wales. This has allowed me to stretch myself even further and offer me yet more new food (no not that type, Natasha) for artistic thought. I now use photographs/collage/wall filler/glue/paint/saw dust in my art and it is always new and exciting. Whether I am learning huge amounts on the way I am not so sure, but I am just happy to be experiencing, expressing and experimenting. I find this infinitely more satisfying and much more fun than the learning of lessons, anyway.

 I doubt whether my need to create will ever leave me, as there are so many rivers to swim through and way too many inspirations for just this one life… so here’s hoping I come around again and again and again……..

Moods. Photograph, 2010. Copyright Greg Howes.

Thank you, Greg, for sharing your sources of inspiration and your story with us! May this world of art and nature contunue to inspire you for years and years to come.



Punkwrr. Collage, photomorph, slogans. Copyright Greg Howes.

Greg Howes continues the story of his art, inspirations, innovations, and fearless creation. Please see yesterday’s post for the beginning of this story…

I moved to Carmarthenshire, south-west Wales in 1990, where fortunately I was able to continue my horticultural career. Shortly after that move I began to combine my love of plants and my passion to create something a bit different. I started to make pictures and designs from pressed flowers, leaves and grasses that I found growing locally. This medium allowed me to be creative whilst expressing my love of the plant world in all of its different shapes, forms, colours and textures. Moreover, I didn’t feel that I had to apply the more traditional methods to make interesting art.

Mantra. Photomorph, clematis. 2007. Copyright Greg Howes.

I spent many hours and days making pictures in this fashion. Looking back I used to spend hours and hours on a single card which was probably thrown away within a week of the recipient receiving it, but the main joy for me was in creating something new and out of something readily available, beautiful, and free. I still have one or two small pictures I made at that time, but how I wish I had photographed some of the designs that really worked well. One in particular I can remember had a background of pressed white poplar (Populus alba) topside up, this gave a mottled lake finish to it, a single passion-flower, (Passiflora caerulea) as a centre piece, surrounded by small blue flowers and a tiny amount of foliage from love in mist (Nigella damascena) plant.

Serenity. Photomorph. 2008. Copyright Greg Howes.

I bought my first computer in 1997. It had a very basic photo morphing facility which I never used because I did not have a digital camera at the time (nor, I suspect, did many others). Things changed about a year afterwards when I bought myself a scanner and started fiddling with old, already developed photographs of friends and family. Being an avid countryside walker, I then started picking bits of fungi and lichen up and scanning to see what they looked like morphed with my computer software. This did make for some interesting results; though I must confess I did not enjoy wiping off the squidgy mess from my scanner afterwards. It’s interesting that we can see beauty in sweeping landscapes and flower gardens, and even in singular blooms, but the beautiful intricacies of some of nature’s most useful foot soldiers go largely unnoticed.

JKL LM. Collage and photomorph. 2007. Copyright Greg Howes.

 

The real change for me artistically happened in around 2005 when I bought my first digital camera. Upon reflection, it seems much more like ten years ago rather that five as I have spent so much time with it ever since. I soon found that the ease to get a reasonable-quality picture, with a minimum amount of fiddling about, was very seductive. I then managed to get myself a copy of Microsoft “PhotoDraw V2” which was a rudimentary photographic design software which was produced some years earlier. However dated it was, it opened up new horizons for me and allowed me to create at will. This change fortunately coincided with my joining of the “Social Networking” site called Myspace. I found that this site gave me an ideal platform on which to display my work whilst also getting the opinion of friends and other artists alike.

 

Originally most of my photographic art work came from the natural world, which I would then morph and play around with colour and form. Trees were high on my list of subjects, but so were other more unlikely images like dew riddled sheep’s wool stuck on barbed wire fences and etc and etc. It soon began to be apparent that beauty and intrigue are often ringed, fenced by our own limited perception of where it can be found. If we all learned to alter our focus a little and live “outside of the box” from time to time, a whole new world can open up to us.

Butterfly Girl. Collage, paint, photomorph. 2008. Copyright Greg Howes.

 Greg Howes will share the third installment of his fascinating story tomorrow.

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