Lake and Mountains
I just finished reading the 1980 Portrait of an Artist: A Biography of Georgia O’Keeffe by Laurie Lisle, which I highly recommend for anyone just wanting to wrap their head around the life and legend of this phenomenal artist.
I just returned from a pilgrimage to her two houses in New Mexico, one at Ghost Ranch where we stayed a few days to explore and photograph “O’Keeffe Country.” Then we visited the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe. It was there that I bought the book as well as many prints, cards, and additional art books focusing on this artist.
My trip was so visually rich that I have been floundering, trying to figure out how to integrate all the visual and intellectual information I’ve taken in. One thing I did was buy a big landscape view watercolor Moleskine sketchbook and began art journaling.
I title all my journals, and this one is called “Working Into My Own,” with an O’Keeffe quote that is meaningful to me at this stage of my life:
“I was alone and singularly free, working into my own–no one to satisfy but myself.” —Georgia O’Keeffe Some Memories of Drawings
Now that I’ve finished the biography, I am looking deeply at her paintings. For this art journal page, I was studying the composition of her “Lake and Mountains” because I was fascinated by the egg shape. It took me a long time to figure out it was supposed to be a lake:
O’Keeffe is the Queen of Simplicity, of smooth, pared-down abstractions and a flawless surface application of paint, all of which I admire but do not personally aspire to.
I added mysterious dark shapes into my landscape using torn tissue paper. I love the spontaneous, unexpected effects of torn paper and the full range of playful collage tools and techniques that typify the art journal aesthetic.
Have you been doing any art lately? Discovered ay new artists or fun techniques?