Advance Sales Begin for Lee Khanna’s Before the Rainbow
I'm pleased to announce that an image of one of my paintings "Sol y Sombra" has been selected for the cover of Before the Rainbow, my dear friend Lee Khanna's new chapbook of poetry! One of my painting students, Lee has a special connection with my Vieques body of work, especially the large palm paintings. I understand that some of her poems relate to the palms and the lessons she took with me.
The advance six week sales period for her chapbook, Before the Rainbow, published by Finishing Line Press begins August 27. Please go to their website,www.finishinglinepress.com, click on “PREORDER FORTHCOMING TITLES,” and order copies of the book online. Or, you may mail a check to Finishing Line Press/ Post Office Box 1626/ Georgetown, KY 40324. Individual copies are $14. each and $1.99 for shipping. If multiple copies are ordered it will be $4.00 for the first copy and .65 for each additional book, so, for example, 10 books would be $9.85 for shipping. Please give the Press the mailing address where you wish your copies to be shipped upon the book’s release on November 30, 2012.
Early reviews of Before the Rainbow include the following:
“The island of Vieques has long been associated with a history of Spanish domination and U.S. exploitation, and most recently, an influx of American tourists. Before the Rainbow brings new texture to this complex reality as Lee Cullen Khanna fulfills the role of witness and critic in her dazzling first collection of poetry. With powerful lyricism, she reveals a world of disquieting contrasts that pervade social and natural landscapes. Khanna’s bold and refreshing voice is a much needed contribution to writing on Vieques.”
-- Linda Gould Levine, Professor of Spanish Literature, Montclair State University. Author of Isabel Allende, Twayne Publishers
“Lee Cullen Khanna’s Before the Rainbow explores living in Vieques, P.R., an island that is part paradise and part victim of a colonial legacy. Khanna juxtaposes the beauty of its sea, sand, skies, flora and fauna against what she calls its “tortured history.” In finding joy in a spray of yellow coconut blossoms and egrets who turn to angels as if in a painting, she works magic with the landscape. Khanna’s strong voice, or, rather several voices -- ironic, painterly, lyrical, political – give us a deeply satisfying look at Vieques, where there is “surprise in palm and deep sea.”
-- Carole Stone, author of American Rhapsody, Cavankerry PressComment on or Share this Article →
At long last! This week I painted and hung out the shingle for my new Studio & Gallery in Frankfort, MI. It's been almost 4 years since I first set eyes on the old Victorian home that has become the center of both my domestic and professional life. What a journey! I'm very grateful for the space to show my work as it deserves to be seen. And to have a place to offer lessons and, of course, to paint indoors when I want. Open by appointment and chance, I hope you'll come take a look.Comment on or Share this Article →
I'm pleased to announce publication of my new book, 7 Habits of Deeply Fulfilled Artists: Your Aesthetic Needs & How to Meet Them (Clear Light Press, 128 pages, $14.95).
For artists in any media, making art may be the most essential requirement for happiness; however, amateurs and professionals alike often fail to recognize the need to do their art. Based on my personal and professional experience dealing with frustrated artists, Seven Habits of Deeply Fulfilled Artists packs passion, experiential anecdote, and powerful ideas into an accessible handbook of practices essential for finding fulfillment as an artist.
If you're a seasoned artist, or one who has come to art later in life, this book will show you why your happiness depends on making art. The illustrated text will also increase your willingness to do art, show you how to create intentions and set goals for making art, help you deal with inner and outer obstacles, and bring greater awareness, direction and value to your art-making. Join me on an inspirational journey to the wholehearted satisfaction of your aesthetic needs.
Your signed copy of 7 Habits of Deeply Fufilled Artist: Your Aesthetic Needs & How to Meet Them is available now. Order below.Comment on or Share this Article →
The 2012 Tree Poster, Frankfort, MI
A couple of years ago I spent a delightful afternoon painting by the shore of Betsie Bay here in my new hometown, Frankfort, MI. The sun slanted in from the west causing the leaves on the small maples to shimmer and shine. I enjoyed designing the canvas to show the new trees with the old smokestack across the water in Elberta. I thought it would make a great image for the city's annual tree poster and was very pleased when it was selected for 2012's. I learned that the trees had been planted by the local Tree Board with private funds as memorials. What a wonderful way to remember a loved one!
My mother, when she moved to Martha's Vineyard in the early 1980s, donated money to have four maples planted in the triangular grassy plot opposite her home and the Oak Bluffs playground. While she passed away three years ago, the trees live on. My siblings and I reluctantly sold the Yellow House on the Corner last September. The day before the closing we sat on the porch for the last time and admired how tall and sturdy those trees had grown over the past 30 years, a testament to my mother's generosity and vision for the future of not only her own family, but everyone who would pass by. Thanks, mom!
If you can't plant a tree today, consider giving one a hug -- I'm sure it will be appreciated.Comment on or Share this Article →
Me & My Triptych
My 2012 Vieques Open Studio. The work looked wonderful. The food was delicious. The guests were admiring. And there were no sales! Not one. Zip. Zero. Nada. Nope. At least not yet. I've struggled all day not to be negative about this and it's been REALLY hard not to question everything about my art-making, art-marketing and art patronage. I've indulged in more than a little grousing. I mean, this is not how it's supposed to be!
Still, I love this picture of me and my triptych. The panels (each 30" x 30") were designed so they can each interface with the others, so they can mimic clouds by changing formation. Halfway through the opening reception, I did the switcharoo. What a delight! I've heard tell that pleasing oneself is the best thing an artist can do. By this measure, the event was a great success. Congratulations to me!Comment on or Share this Article →
30" x 30" oil/canvas
A couple of months ago, my painting style took a radical turn. For most of my painting life I've been a representational artist. I've painted from life or photographic references or not at all. But when the weather turned this autumn, I found myself bored with painting from photographs and insufficiently motivated to brave the Michigan cold. What to do?
Fortunately, the brush in my hand found its way to the pallette and then to a large canvas. The result? A whole new sort of painting, one for which I have yet to develop a descriptive language. In fact, the new work seems to be its own language. It speaks to me while I'm working and fulfills a deep need to reveal my Inner Landscape. You can see more by clicking here.
The painting shown here, "Primary Joy," is a celebration of color, texture and form; it was just accepted into The Northwest Michigan Juried Exhiition which opens at The Dennos Museum in Traverse City, MI this Saturday at 6 p.m. If you're in the area, I hope you'll stop by and see the new work in person!Comment on or Share this Article →
"Not Far from the Tree"
New Year's is a great time for some horn-tooting, so here goes mine! I'm pleased to have had really wonderful opportunities to show and sell my work during 2011. Following is a list of some of these. I'm very grateful to my collectors for their support and encouragement -- and for proving that the economy does not daunt those who value Art. (I myself acquired two paintings, one by Margo Burian and the other by Stuart Shils.)
- "Vieques Vibrante!" Solo Show, Museo Fuerte Conde de Mirasol, Vieques, PR
- "Light on the Land", Solo Show, Frankfort, MI
- "Summer's Day" selected as 2011 Port Oneida Fair Poster, Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
- Artist in Residence, Glen Arbor Art Association
- Studio on Main, Group Show, Frankfort, MI
- Prized painting, Juried Members Show, Oliver Center for the Arts, Frankfort, MI
- Feature article, "Ellie Harold Paints a Good Life After Overcoming Adversity," Benzie County Record Patriot, December 21, 2011
In 2011, I began to focus more on applying my mentoring expertise to the emotional and spiritual challenges faced by artists. I love combining my career experiences to produce new ways to be of service to the Muse. As I do this, I've found my work taking on new dimensions. An intense Master Class with Stuart Shils in June of this year spurred me on to learn more about abstraction. A whole world of inner landscapes has opened up! All in all, I feel deeply satisfied with my work this year and look forward to creating more in 2012.
Have you made your list of efforts and accomplishments yet? It's never too late to give yourself credit for what you've done and to plan for what you'd like to do next! May you also take pleasure in what you've achieved in 2011 and feel free to toot your own horn!Comment on or Share this Article →
Warm truth for a chilly season from Fra Giovanni, a 16th century monk. Take heed!
A Christmas Greeting
I salute you. There is nothing I can give you which you have not. But there is much which, while I cannot give, you can take.
No heaven can come to us unless our hearts find rest in it today. Take Heaven.
No peace lies in the future that is not hidden in this present instance. Take Peace.
The gloom of the world is but a shadow. Behind it, yet within our reach, is joy.Take Joy.
And so at this Christmastime I greet you with the prayer that for you now and forever the day breaks and the shadows flee away.
Fra Giovanni, 1513
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A local group called "Ski & Spree" inspired a rather urgent call for art this week. Seems they are hosting their first meeting of the season at the new Oliver Art Center here in Frankfort, MI this weekend. And, as the art center is still not officially open for business, there was no art show hung. Disappointed that their 150 members would have no art to enjoy along with their food, they sent out a call to local artists to display "winter" work for sale and silent auction. Now, in this neck of the woods, most people are loathe to hand a snow painting on their walls. (I did, however, sell one to a woman from Texas this summer.) This unexpected call for art was all I needed to get out some reference photos and paint away. Four paintings later, this one emerged as my favorite. It reminds me of the farm where we got our first Michigan Christmas tree on my birthday last December. I called it "Unbroken Trail" to pique the interest of the cross-country skiers in the Ski and Spree group. It's hard to believe in just a few weeks that white stuff will start falling. In fact, I don't believe it. But if the snow insists on flying in the face of my disbelief, you can be sure I'll be breaking trail across that pristine meadow.Comment on or Share this Article →
I'm finishing up my two-weeks Glen Arbor Art Association residency in Sleeping Bears Dunes National Lakeshore with much satisfaction. Everyone wants to know if I had fun. I tell them No. I needed to work and I did work and I am satisfied with my efforts. To me, this is far more rewarding than "fun."
Why do people seem anxious to describe the work of an artist in terms usually reserved for recreation. After all, how many of them go off to work each day anticipating a day filled with fun? I'm sensitive to this, I suppose, because I'm beginning to allow my work to actually reflect the struggle I often feel when making art. I suppose I've had fun as a less serious painter, but now I seek something more deeply gratifying. I need to.
I've never been one to delay gratification of pressing needs -- once I realize I have them. Ever self-sufficient, however, I admit I've been slow to acknowledge that in some circumstances I actually have needs, however. But one thing this current residency has shown me is that painting is not a whim, not a passing fancy, not a hobby, not something fun I do when I can find the time, but a real need.
If I don't paint, the need goes unfulfilled in me. Until I face a blank canvas I don't know what that something is. Once I do, I discover my raison d'etre is revealed, not all at once, but in the unfoldment of the work. I'm very grateful to those organizations that offer residency programs. It's one very real way to "supprot the arts." Too much goes unnoticed in the ordinary flow of daily life. Even if it's not fun, the time out for self-discovery and development of my art is worth the time and trouble to get away.Comment on or Share this Article →