Rauschenberg, Klimt, Vuillard, Kandinsky, Matisse. These artists inspire me. I love color, pattern, texture, collage, and atmospheric mixed media. These are the buttons that push me to work. When I draw, print, or paint reality, it's because natural forms and colors are much more complex and sophisticated than any I can imagine, so I use reality to create layers of complex form and color. I'm not really a realist at all. I love composition; mastering techniques that are a challenge; creating surfaces that are tactile and deep in their look, and sometimes even their feel. I enjoy experimenting, and since I'm about the process more than the product, I never get so attached to a work in progress that I'm afraid to try something for fear it will be ruined. As I tell my students, "faint heart never won fair maid."
I love it when people love my work, but I don't really do it for anyone but myself. It satisfies something intrinsic to me, and I know this because I chose, for a short time, not to do art, and ended up painting rocks with shoe polish, because that was all I had available to me. Art is something I have to do, that's all.
My first memory is trying to draw an eye. I couldn't stop my hand from drawing the iris as a double circle, and it made me angry that I didn't yet have the control to do what my mind knew was right. I was two years old.
I grew up the youngest of 5, in Centerport, Long Island New York. We are all of us artists, amazingly. I began 1st grade at 5, since my parents didn't believe in kindergarten. Just as well! I played in the woods, and had great freedom as a pre-schooler, in charge of my world. That's how I felt back then, even knowing someday I'd be an adult, and things would be different when I grew up. I have many memories of that time in my life.
On my first day of school at age 5, I realized I couldn't get out of it; that I had 12 years to do school and no choice. I shrugged and accepted my fate: it's a clear memory. Fast forward to public high school, art classes and knowing I wanted to teach, and eventually realized that I had to teach art. It was my passion, after all. And finally knowing that I loved learning. All sorts of things, and forever. THAT has never changed.
And so, the schools: SUNY at Stony Brook with a double major: art and art history. Columbia University Teacher's College with an MA in Fine Art in Education; George Mason with an endorsement in Gifted Education; Marriage, two brilliant sons; courses in painting, jewelry, weaving, and sumi-e. Seventeen years teaching high school art in Greenlawn, NY; showing my work there, and then the move to Virginia and divorce. I sold insurance to survive til I could find a teaching position in Prince William County, where I've taught since 1992.
I've taken many graduate courses in all different forms of art through VCU, et voila, here I am, at age 70, still teaching high school art in Prince William County, and showing my work here in Fredericksburg, with a gallery at Liberty Town, and a month at FCCA. Life is rich, full and good. (It's difficult to synopsize so many years!)
I hope you enjoy my show.
Pam Weldon is a self taught artist. She began seeing steampunk art everywhere about 5 years ago,loved it & decided to give it a try. Using broken items ,shes finds at estate sales,garage sales & junk yards. She assembles her pieces in an old 1930's chicken coop,she has converted into here studio. She likes to have each of here pieces have there own personality some cute & some bizarre that take on a know object or recognizable animal or person. She enjoys seeing peoples reactions to her art as she calls them "Her Robots" She also does Clocks & Lamps & Custom Pieces. She is currently working on a Facebook page for her art and has named her Studio Broken & Twisted Art Studio. Which hints at her method of construction. So you could check out here future work there or contact her at [email protected] for a custom piece.
Michael C. Habina
Artist Statement—The Month of July, in the members gallery I am doing something a little bit unusual. I am going to have an interactive, interesting art showing, that can be fun for all who visit including the youngsters, who love to be challenged. My theme for this show is ,"Where am I?". All of my photographs which I hang will be accompanied by a secret panel, asking the viewer, "where was the photograph taken" and "where was I" when taken? These are all going to be local landmarks, which we see daily but can't remember where. Some will be easy, and others, well, might be a tad bit trying on our memories. The answers will be revealed under the cards hanging, as I don't want anyone to leave without knowing that each photograph is in plain sight, but I just see it a little different. This show in July, will be artistic, entertaining, beautiful and just plain fun for everyone.
Traditional to Digital Photography—After 40 plus years of doing traditional Black & White and Color photography I have made the conversion to Digital, which has opened a whole new set of doors. I did not say it closed the doors to traditional, only left them cracked to make room for new and exciting bodies of art.
What began as a journey from a very young age to almost 56 years later was a boy’s dream of having some very fine people surround him and teach him the world of art and seeing, even with your eyes closed. I was born in South Philly, moved to South Jersey and recently just moved to Virginia. My childhood is filled with Depression Era Uncles and WWII vets, who filled my imagination to its limits, with stories of the exotic islands to Hobo’s sitting by the train yard, and telling tales of their travels. It was filled with smells of turpentine, and oil paint and canvas. I watched as they produced works of art in oil, pastel, charcoal, etchings, and several other mediums, all the while teaching me composition, tones, contrast, darkroom techniques, and more. They had me view , not read, at several magazines, such as, Life, National Geographic and several more for ideas and concepts. And then I turned 7. At no point did I realize I would grow up to be an artist.
Once I had a lot of this great wisdom and knowledge, I went into the US Naval “Submarine Service”, and began a journey that would change my life forever. I served with the finest men of our nation, sailed to exotic locations, journeyed to Europe, and the Mediterranean sea area, studying civilizations, I only read about, in those magazines, seeing with my own eyes, great bodies of work by the masters. I was young, had a camera, pastels, and charcoals, and it hit. I am becoming my uncles. I am an artist.
For the next 30 years I did photography and little else, working a darkroom like it was a second home. I hand painted a lot of Black and whites, using oils for permanence, and showing the world my eyes, and mind’s vision. Using my children and others as model, I shot Angels on the beach, children as ghost, women as gods and much more, but my eye for the landscape was my bread and butter. It sold and I paid my bills. Allowing me to expand into other extraordinary photographic mediums.
As of January 2016, I switched to digital to explore other avenues of art, of which, I have been thinking of. It has been an experience, allowing me to do new, yet very exciting work. Most people think “What type of digital camera did you buy”? Well I am not normal, so I borrowed a 35 mm, use my IPAD, and GOPRO camera to capture some very unique perspectives not seen on the art market. And that is what Art Is all about. And that is what I will continue to do for now, God willing.