I’m a bit too pooped to be much of an artist today, so I’m putting time in on peripheral tasks. As mentioned previously, the biggest of these is processing and capturing hi-rez images of a great backlog of finished pictures that has piled up since last Spring! Oh, have I ever been neglecting this picky-fussy task, which is necessary but no fun.

 

Do you want to see the difference between a quick, working photo and a really good image capture? At top is the snapshot I took in the studio, using my trusty Canon Powershot camera. It actually does a reasonable job, although the image is very contrasty, and the actual color of the paper and ink are out of balance.

 

Now, compare that version to the one below, which is so much sharper and has a far more subtle and complete range of tones. If you click the picture to enlarge it, you can see the texture in this painting a lot better too, although not as well as you could if we were looking a the real thing together.

 

Norway warm up 2

 

Logan High Up 2 blog

 

Um, can you tell this view is high up in the subarctic Norwegian mountains, and in a winter’s storm? Hope so.

 

Okay – back to work I go. There won’t be a post tomorrow (I’m taking down my exhibition), but by Tuesday or Wednesday we should be back to a normal rhythm –

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

 

LOGAN OYENSTIKKERE 32 blog

 

This picture just popped out of nowhere yesterday morning. Wasn’t expecting to do a dragonfly! Full confession: I actually did this the other way around, but it looks better this way, so upside down is the better right side up! I’ve quite wondering or worrying about why this happens so often. I simply see it as a perplexing gift.

 

The dragonfly below was also a surprise. You should know that I’ve been making pictures on two sheets since last Spring. I mess a lot of them up, but if one side or the other is any good, I keep it. I now have a HUGE stack of orphaned halves. Once in awhile, I choose a pair that are so mismatched they make no sense, and see if despite that, I can turn them into a picture that works. It forces me to try things I wouldn’t usually consider, and while the exercise rarely succeeds, I sometimes do get an unexpected picture out of it!

 

 

Logan Dragonfly31 blog

 

 

Hey All –

 

This is a view of a lake I know well. It’s quite dynamic for a little old thing. Okay, it doesn’t get small ice bergs in it, like another lake not far off, but a wonderful, lonely peak stands right behind it, often with it’s head in the weather. I’ve seen my first snow of the season there, more than once – and in the beginning days of September. Winter comes early to that high country.

 

So often I’ve thought, “I should do some paintings of this place” And now I have, a whole bunch of them in fact! Keep an eye out for more coming up – and in hi-rez too!

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

PS: it’s well worth clicking to see larger – – –

 

 

Logan Skjelingavatnet 9 blog

Skjelingvatnet #9 – a high lake and peak, Vik i Sogn, Norway

India ink, inked collage and surface alteration on paper – two sheets = 14″ x 21″

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Well, I’ve punched myself to a standstill this time and can do no more. I feel a bit let down by this picture (or maybe myself), as if I’ve somehow just missed my reach.

 

That being said, I’ve certainly pushed my mix of collage and painting further than ever. It’s hard to look at this one and not think it was done in some sort of thicker paint, rather than just India ink. My surfaces are very rich now. I wonder, is my work starting to go through a character shift?

 

Here is a detail view of the upper right corner, so you can something of what I’m talking about:

 

Logan North Sea-Headland detail 3 blog

 

And below is the whole picture – click on the images to get a really good look!

 

Logan North Sea-Headland blog

 

North Sea – Distant Headland, Norway

India ink, inked collage and surface alteration on paper – two sheets = 14″ x 21″

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SURPRISE!

 

The weather was iffy today, so no carpentry in the driveway. Instead, I used my unexpected studio day to mess with that sad loser of a picture I showed you on Thursday. Whether it succeeds or fails remains in doubt, but at the very least, I’m learning all kinds of things about collaging and at the same time creating surprising, actual textures. The surface of this picture is beginning to look a lot like an oil painting – and it’s done in India ink! Maybe kind of cool?

 

PLEASE click it to take a good look – you’ll see what I mean.

 

I wonder if I am edging towards becoming a black & white Impressionist?

 

More next week –

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

PS: This is where I’ve left it for the evening –

 

Logan 9-30-2017

 

And just for comparison’s sake, here is what it looked like when I started this morning –

 

Logan 9-28-17 2

 

 

Logan 9-28-17 1

 

Good Evening All –

 

Why stay tucked away in a fjord? I felt like trying to paint a rough North Atlantic sea, and these two pictures are the result!

 

My thought was to do a view with a very high horizon line, and then maybe the glimpse of a headland peeking up, waaaaaay off in the distance. Then I nailed the picture above, and was (for once) smart enough not to keep messing with it. To me it looks like roiling, wind-tossed breakers. So maybe I’m still on shore.

 

Yet I wanted to try my original idea too. So I started the picture below. Hmmm, don’t think I like it. Should it be scrapped? Probably, but I’ll let it rest for a few days before definitely deciding.

 

Meanwhile, I’m going to finish my carpentry chores, so I doubt there’ll be posts over the weekend. Watch for new ones next week though!

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

Logan 9-28-17 2

 

 

Logan 9-27-17 1

 

Good Morning –

 

really must get going on flattening all of the pictures that are piling up, because studio snapshots just kill these paintings. Nevertheless, here are the results of yesterday’s ink slinging. I’m loose, feeling pretty darned on the edge and if I’m perplexed by how close I’m coming to chaos, it’s starting to feel normal.

 

I seem to be stuck in moody, somewhat abstracted – and very stormy – Norwegian fjord views. Am pretty sure today I’ll be right back there. Gonna go see – RIGHT NOW!

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

PS: I’m also becoming ever more intrigued with working my sheets so hard that I rip and grind right through. In the last photo, you can see the green tape joining the two sheets, and also the brown of the backing board peeking through. Why do I like the look of this?

 

Man, that picture has been put through hell. It probably needs a little, careful and very tender attention now.

 

LAST HINT: CLICK ‘EM TO REALLY SEE WHAT’S HAPPENING IN THERE!

 

Logan 9-27-17 2

 

Logan 9-27-17 3

 

 

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Hey ya –

 

Action-packed here lately, and no time for blogging or even art making! But I’ll sling ink as soon as I’m done writing you. May I’ll post some show-n-tell later if the day goes well.

 

One reason you haven’t heard from me is that we have a nice weather and I must use it. I needed days of no rain to turn my driveway into a furniture and fixture building shop. My mission this time is to re-organize my paper and art storage area, which is also the matting and framing area, print collection storage, guest bedroom and my Sweetie’s sewing room. Yep, it’s one over booked room! How on earth do I fit more flat storage in there too?

 

Answer: put it on wheels! That way the flat files can be pushed out of the way in any direction, when some other part of the room is in use!

 

So, imagine me out there in the sun working away – and not only for my workspace; I’m also making a new top for our trunk table, a cool foot stool with cat-proof storage for Reidun’s knitting projects, and some other odds and ends. I’ll get back to all of that tomorrow, and hopefully be done on Friday.

 

Have the finest day –

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

PS: handy tip – old metal bed frames are the best cheap (or even free) source for angle iron if you need it! This base (wheels about to be bolted on) should handle plenty of weight.

 

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Here are snapshots from last Saturday at the gallery. It was a lovely gathering – and in just a few minutes I’m off to meet another crew coming up to see my work!

 

THANKS SO MUCH TO ALL WHO CAME!

 

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Logan Norway 9-19-17 2 flipped

 

I’ve just realized this painting (which is the same one seen in the second photo of my previous post) looks a whole lot better – and more fjord-like if it’s turned upside down!

 

If I admit I don’t know what I’m doing and just keep it this way, can I say it’s finished?

 

 

Logan Norway 9-19-17

 

I like the picture above quite a lot – but am not at all sure what to make of the second one. Or how to reach a finish. It’s so rambunctious, full of energy and chaotic texture that it looks like it could explode! Or maybe it already has?

 

I like a lot of what’s happening in there. This is the sort of picture that really pushes me, so regardless of whether it makes it or not, I’ll have learned something.

 

I can’t wait to get good image captures of my latest pictures. Until then, please forgive my studio snapshots. If you CLICK TO ENLARGE THESE, you’ll get a little better idea of how much is going on in there!

 

Logan Norway 9-19-17 2

 

 

I relearned an old, old picture making lesson yesterday: nothing can be precious.

 

If I fall in love with any portion of a picture, and it’s not helping that picture as a whole, I’ll have a harder time nixing it. And it’s very likely that I’ll ruin the rest of a picture by trying to make it fit with its mismatched part! That’s backwards.

 

Luckily, this picture wouldn’t die, even as out of balance as it was and as much as I messed with it. To begin with, it looked like this yesterday morning:

 

LOGAN TEST

 

Yikes, that surface was so visually active that it was almost wiggly, but the wild staccato of textures and tone everywhere completely short-circuited the whole image. I’m exhausted just looking at it.

 

Yet there was wonderful work in there. And you may notice pieces of scrap, inky paper propped up along the bottom and taped on in the middle right. When in trouble, I start gluing. Some call it cheating, and others call it collaging. I just build pictures. But I also call in my Sweetie and several dear friends when I’m confused. “What should I do,” I ask, oh poor, poor me.

 

One member of my advisory board said I should just cut out the good parts and make a couple little pictures. These was her suggestions:

 

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Yep, she was sure right, and do you see what I mean? Such lovely work in there, but I didn’t want to butcher my picture. I wanted to fix it. How?

 

And now, for a quick aside: you must understand that I paint in the middle of a big mess. Well, let me just show you instead of trying to describe it:

 

Logan studio 9-19-17

 

This is normal for me. In fact, it’s a bit cleaner than usual. Uh huh, truth.

 

There are always piles of scrap paper and cut up pieces of old, failed paintings on my work table. I just keep clearing space to continue slinging ink, until I’m feeling so crowded that I have to tidy up. This doesn’t happen often, and what that really means, is that I have big supply of collage material right at hand.

 

Now, just after my friend said it was time to subdivide, I noticed a big piece of blotchy paper. I didn’t even know how it got there or what it was once part of, but it was propped up as if waiting for me. And I realized it could span clear across the bottom half my troubled painting. I taped it in place and this is what it looked like:

 

LOGAN TEST 2

 

WOW, WOW, WOW!! I mean, I could almost hear the whole image snap together.

 

And I felt disappointed with myself. Of course the really active background in my  picture needed something big, bold and simple in the foreground. Why didn’t I see that?

 

And just to throw in yet another and, I felt uncomfortable with taking advantage of this little discovery of mine. I mean, is such huge happenstance really fair?

 

Phew, okay, I got that out – now I can move on!

 

My goal is pictures and momentum, thus the rest of my tale points straight forward – I cut off the bottom of my painting, then sanded and spliced in my miracle patch. Of course, I couldn’t just leave it at that! I’m me, and I have a hard time quitting, so I fussed; collaging in other bits and pieces, scrapping, sanding and painting a little more.

 

NOW, I think I’m done – and I’m a looooong way from where I started too!

 

LOGAN TEST 3

 

That’s yesterdays tale. Now it’s time to continue with the next one –

 

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

 

PS: one more goofy thing – which I don’t understand at all. Many of my pictures look just as good (or even better) upside down! What?

 

LOGAN TEST 3 flipped

 

 

LOGAN NORWAY DONE THERE

 

Good Morning All –

 

I’m back in the studio after having a wonderful weekend in which I made one big mistake!

 

My exhibition reception was on Saturday and so many folks came! I got so excited and chatty that I forgot about the camera in my pocket. You know what that means – no photos, but I’ve put out a plea to everyone to send along any they took. Then, I’ll post them.

 

Meanwhile, MY photo this morning is a working shot of a painting I made in Norway. It’s a great big peak that looms over a gorgeous Norwegian glacial valley. I spent two days there, painting and fishing the little creek that runs down to the fjord in the evenings. A wonderful, perfect time. My take home are a trio of paintings that I’ll show you this week.

 

Is this mountain of mine done? I don’t know. I think maybe it’s close.

 

More to come –

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

 

Logan Norway 1 9-14-17

 

Strange marks and moves today – paper ripping up and Geez Louise, is it stormy in these pictures! I must work on bringing in some sunshine soon.

 

All of these still need work. My hunch is that each requires select focusing of salient details. I must anchor this chaos, and give viewers a toehold. But how? I’m not sure what to do.

 

I also realize my quick snapshots don’t do reality justice. If we were looking at my paintings together, you would feel them in your gut. The surfaces are so brutalized and raw. It’s as if they were torn up in a big, bad old storm – and took us with ’em!

 

Of course, the flip side is that I don’t think these will support themselves. They’re so distressed and fragile that they’re ready to fall apart. I’ll have to figure something out, and I suspect it’ll mean mounting onto carrier sheets, but how do I do that without flattening texture I don’t want to lose? Yep, still more concerns, but they’re another day’s problems.

 

Tomorrow won’t be a painting day – and I probably won’t write you either. I must prep for my exhibition reception, and then clean the place up – we’re having friends over afterwards.

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

Logan Norway 2 9-14-17

 

Logan Norway 4 9-14-17

 

Logan Norway 3 9-14-17

 

 

Norway Warm Up 3

Okay so yes, if yesterday I could do no wrong, today provided counterbalance. Oh my oh my, what a difficult time I had, with nothing to show for it at the end. Just another day in the trenches then, but still I learned a thing or two. That counts!

 

The picture above still has a good ways to go, but it’s promising so far. It was begun right after the one I showed you yesterday (that one still needs work too – scroll down to see it).

 

Gray is HARD to handle. It has no obvious punch. It goes muddy so easily, or never makes it past lackluster, yet if I can figure out how to use it well, my pictures might have surprising potency. And they would be honest. Norway, up in the mountains in the storms and mist, is almost a black & white & gray, gray world. But it’s still dramatic!

 

The key to success may be in making tiny moves that somehow still read. I think it has to do with how acutely we see even small interruptions in what we’re looking at. I’m going to have to sort this out, and learn how to stack and mix textures and subtle tonal shifts. It will require sensitivity, and I’m more of a sledgehammer kind of guy. Oh, and I also need to better understand and take into account how to fine tune a picture for a specific viewing distance.

 

This is all tough stuff – I’ll be working on it awhile!

 

Tomorrow I’ll get back at it –

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

 

Norway Warm Up 4

 

This was also done as a warm up just before we left to go over there. It’s not quite finished.

 

The view is of a peak behind a lake, high up in the stormy mountains on the way to the Sognefjord, and the little town where my Sweetie was born.

 

THIS IS ANOTHER PAINTING THAT REALLY COMES INTO IT’S OWN WHEN ENLARGED – CLICK IT!

 

You’ll see a number of variations of this view – I’m sort of stuck on it! In fact, the very weird, ripped up picture from yesterday began as (or maybe still is) of the same scene.

 

I wonder how today in the studio will go? Guess we’ll have to wait and see –

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

 

Logan_strange new dragonfly

 

Okay, I’m on fire today – and I’m delighted because tomorrow who knows? Not today’s problem.

 

Do you like my new dragonfly! I do, a lot, but didn’t to start with. In fact, just his front half (he’s on two sheets) got pitched in my almost-a-goner pile last December. There he stayed, until a couple of hours ago when I found him again. I stuck a new right side on, slammed ink down and started bullying it around. Now Mr. Aerial-predator has one fine looking back end! My Sweetie just came home from work and she says this dragonfly looks as if he’s flying out of a Norwegian landscape. Well, go figure!

 

Bug saved. Like I said, I’m the king of ink today.

 

Oops, did I just jinx it? Guess I’m about to find out!

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

 

Wild Norway 9-12-17

 

I literally tore into this Norway view this morning – and I love it! The dimension and physicality of the picture is almost overwhelming, and I can take it even further with additional quiet sub-texture.

 

BUT I’M IN TROUBLE TOO! I had intended to collage in textures/tones behind the holes so they peek through, but I’m shocked to find that I LOVE the brown and green of the tape and backing board showing. Poop, color. Really? Now what do I do???!@!!> ?

 

Oh, and CLICK ON THE PICTURE – IT’S WORTH IT!

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

 

This is the same scene as yesterday, but now winter is in. I really like this one. It was  almost as if the marks made themselves, and they look very unplanned, yet the information is there. And then, I had to have the guts to peck at it, and grind course sandpaper into the sheet, to create the falling flakes. THAT was a tough thing to do – if it had gone wrong the picture would have been ruined. But it went right and I am pleased!

 

There will be a different landscape tomorrow – keep watching –

 

Your Buddy Bill

 

Norway warm up 2

 

 

Good Morning All –

 

For awhile there I got out of the habit of regular posting, and that’s no good.

 

But beginning this week my summer play time is over and I’m starting what I hope will be a concentrated studio run that takes me through the Autumn and Winter. I have SO MUCH new work to show you already, although most of it must still be flattened and scanned. That’s going to take a bit, so for now, let’s at least start with some quick point-n-shoot photos. Perhaps it’s not the best way to show you what has me so excited right now, but at least it’ll give you a hint of what’s coming!

 

I’ve begun a new series of Norwegian landscapes. All are done on two sheets, with the thought that they’ll end up bound in sets into albums. A lot of my method and mark making seems to be coming together in these, yet I find them as perplexing as they are exhilarating. I’m not really in control here, so I’m just hanging on and taking the ride.

 

Here is a moody up in the mountains scene. CLICK ON IT TO TAKE CLOSE LOOK – IT’S WORTH IT!

 

Norway warm up 1

 

Oh, and I’m going to keep puttering with odd flower pictures too. Here’s one that was in my almost-a-goner pile. It’s a pretty big pile actually, and most of the pictures there will be scrapped, so they’re fair game to mess with. If I screw one up, who cares? Sometimes I don’t though. Sometimes, a loser ends up looking kind of fine, like this one:

 

Strange bloom