Thursday, November 24, 2011

Studio #21: East Wall

Curled Leaves
This is the east wall of my art studio.  The painting you see is 4' x 6' acrylic painting entitled Curled Leaves.  Below it are a series of small collages that I've made over the past couple of years.  This is the size I make with participants who attend my collage class.  We make a number of them and use them later to find answers to life questions, much like you might use a tarot deck.

To the left of the artwork is a non-functional chimney that adds to the ambiance of the room.  On the chimney, a multi-media shadow box.  Above it, an abstract painting on plywood.  Then my bookshelves filled with supplies and books on writing and art. I have tables that seat up to 10 people set up in front of this painting where I work on collage and at  my writing.

The Morgan Block Building is historic, as are many buildings in Fairhaven.  MBB was a brothel originally.  Up the street at around 20th is an old boarding house.  Folks came and went between the two buildings and the waterfront, where a lumber mill spread out along the water front.  Now Amtrak comes through Fairhaven, as does the ferry from Alaska.  


Friday, November 18, 2011

Artsmith: Announcing the 2012 Artsmith Artist Residency Fell...

Artsmith: Announcing the 2012 Artsmith Artist Residency Fell...: We're very pleased to announce the fellows for the 2012 Artsmith Garden Party Artist Residency have been selected: Lana Hechtman Ayers, poetry
Nancy Canyon, Painting
Lin McJunkin, glass and metal sculpture
Katherine Ryan Ross, Sketching after Van Gogh
Shirley Sachiko Kishiyama, Chinese calligraphy and poetry

Monday, November 7, 2011

Art Parties

Once a month or so my friends and I meet up in my studio for art parties. Most of us are writers and when we do art, it opens up our writing. "Opens" means we are able to move into our writing in a new creative way. So we had a lovely evening recently, eating first: chili and corn bread, a nice red wine and apple crisp for dessert. We then started in on masks that we made with bark and wood from the beach, feathers, paint, shells, moss, seaweed, etc. It was a fun project and once done, we decided to hang as a traveling show, rotating the masks between our different offices. Right now they are hanging in my studio at 1000 Harris, Fairhaven, WA.

Art parties can be made to fit your need. We can celebrate a birthday or a wedding. We can make collages for a milestone, such as a graduation or a new job. We can have food or not. We can drink a celebratory toast to your accomplishment once the project is finished. It's great fun and it's also anchoring for the participants passage into a new phase of life.

If you'd like to invent a passage art project, just let me know in the comment box and I'll connect with you to organize it. Together we will plan your party, food, project, etc. Generally parties cost around 30/person. My space will hold about 6 to 8 people.

Enjoy the masks and contact me for your special event. I'll look forward to meeting and working with you.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Nancy Lou Canyon

I'm named after my grandmother, Lulu.  And I'm a lulu--not in a bad way, but in a creative way.  It just doesn't stop, this creative urge that runs through my viens.  When people tell me they are blocked creatively, all I can think of is how many ideas are always pressing on me to get out on the page, on the canvas, in a mixed-media box, a collage, a hand-made book, another poem, etc.  It is endless.  

I believe the answer to non-production, or blockages is in taking action. You must set aside time and space, though, where you can take action.  There is nothing more frustrating than to get started just a little bit--or to have an idea and not have a place or the supplies to put it together.  

My suggestion is to clear your schedule, open up at least two hours a week for creativity: say Monday or Thursday afternoons.  Give up scrubbing the toilet or putting new shelf paper on the kitchen shelves, just have at the art instead.  It's the only way to satisfy the muse.  Then let it become a habit.  You will be richly rewarded, I promise.

I also think it is important to own that you are an artist or writer.  When people ask what you do, say, I'm an artist.  Or I'm a author.  Owning your creativity makes you believe in yourself.  Even if you dabble, even if you do art only for yourself, own it.  It is yours, after all.  Making up a resume is helpful to show you what you've done in your life.  Or write a list in your journal noting where you've taken classes or what you've read to support your artistic love.

I'd like to support you in expressing yourself artistically.  In the comment box, let me know what project you're working on and how much time you gifted yourself this week to work it.  Yes, we can do it...we can all be lulus.

Peace, Nancy