Last year, I was watching an interview with Minimalist painter Brice Marden and the one thing that has stuck with me ever since is the way he described the importance of the back of a canvas. He said that he learned early on in his career from another artist in the New York art world that the back reflected on the overall quality of the artwork.
Keeping a piece of artwork neat on all sides and surfaces can be time-consuming and difficult, especially when working with liquids. I pour epoxy resin over most of my finished work and drip marks are inevitable. My early work had drips down the sides and gobs of dried resin on the back. Brice inspired me to take more pride in the overall presentation. Now, after pouring the resin, I sometimes spend up to 30 minutes carefully smoothing the edges of the work with a small brush and dragging a gloved finger underneath to eliminate as many drips as possible.
I’ve always felt that signatures on the front of work were distracting and took away from the graphic nature of what I was producing (though I’m sure I’m in the minority!), so I sign small labels on the back instead. I also affix a business card with my contact information on the back of every piece. I feel that it’s important to have a connection with those who buy my work. The information provided on the back lets them know that there’s an open line of communication.
In an era of mass-produced goods, take pride in your work. Stand proud and make the choice to only produce work that you love and feel a connection to, even if it takes way longer to get the finishing touches right. The passion shows.
On the way to Astoria, we stopped in Cannon Beach (my favorite town along the Oregon Coast by far) and drove down sandy side roads, spying quaint little beach cottages. I snapped photos of my two favorites; both were slightly weathered and full of personality! The angles on the above roof made me think it belonged in a tiny Bavarian Village.
This one was extra special because the address was so cute (123?!!) and it even had a wee flower box. My dream would be to own a tiny, cozy cabin near the beach to make the occasional escape from city life. The Oregon Coast in the Fall and Winter has overcast skies, a brisk wind, and is surrounded by a sense of quiet, except for the crashing waves. On Thanksgiving morning, the beach was nearly deserted…
Every time I am near Cannon Beach on the Oregon Coast, it’s necessary to stop and pose next to this sea captain statue! Charming, isn’t he? Past evidence of this statue-posing tradition can be seen here and here.
Red pashmina, Canal Street, NYC
Houndstooth jumper, F21
Beret, Isaac Mizrahi for Target
Coat, Proenza Schouler for Target Go International
Boots, John Fluevog
Note: My Thanksgiving trip to Astoria and the Oregon Coast was amazing and I have so much to share! Unfortunately, I am getting ready for finals and some art shows all weekend, so I haven’t had a chance to get to the photos yet. In the meantime, here’s some color! About a year ago, I found these vintage game cards in a Goodwill bin and made a series of tiny, bright collages to pin to my wall. Sometimes, it’s nice to work informally and to keep things simple…
I pity da foo’ who doesn’t like neutrals! Ha.
+ The Fashion Notebook set on Flickr.