“Arizona Road Trip,” mixed media available at Artery, July 7th

“Arizona Road Trip,” 8 x 10 in. on panel, mixed media, © 2017 Cindy Schnackel

Arizona Road Trip will be shown at the Artery, opening reception Friday July 7, 6-9 pm.

A couple of months ago, the women’s painting group I share space with at the The Artery decided to do a July group show based on the theme of “heat.” For awhile there, I thought I might have to pass on this one, as the only existing piece I had was too big for the space. But one day, going thru my collage drawer of sketchbooks and cut out words, it all came together! That’s the best way for me, to let a piece present itself in the process of looking at materials or subconsciously sketching or painting. If I force myself, the resulting work usually gets painted over or destroyed before it’s finished, as I lose interest or dislike it, unless it takes on a life of its own and feels “right” again. I was glad that something came to me in time to be in this show, because it’s a fun group of women to participate with. I will be showing in the group’s space again in November.

The piece is a collage of a 70’s era vintage map, my doodles, and acrylic paint and ink. I chose a plain, fairly dark, oak frame for it, that has a slight Western feel that works well with this piece. My family moved to AZ in the 70’s so I was really thinking about that as I worked. The move was welcomed, but I never had idyllic thoughts about the state or living here. It just felt like home, warts and all, and humorous pokes at it usually amuse me. Of course, later on as an adult, any time I got to go on a road trip with friends or my husband Brian, junk food was a must, so I knew a can of cheese balls had to be in this. I haven’t been on a real road trip since going vegan 5 yrs ago, so the next time will have to be a vegan version, but otherwise not much has changed. I still look at the cactus, wildlife, and people, and imagine my own scenery and events.

The piece will be for sale, ($200). I have two more in progress on the theme of road trips or the West, also on vintage maps and the same size, but not necessarily about “heat!” One hot piece this time of year is enough. We have had temps over 115 for days, it officially was 119 one day this week. But that’s good weather to sit inside and sift through my collage stuff.

Gallery info:

The Artery (Studio 6)

625 E. Indian School Rd.

Phoenix AZ

https://www.facebook.com/ArtStudio6/

Benefit shows for Laura Dragon; Upcoming Events, Ongoing work

“Hoot!” Acrylic on panel, 12×12 in, done with permission of photographers Archie and Connie Tucker for the ‘Derivatives’ show at the Herberger AZ Center. SOLD

“Hoot” is one of a few paintings I contributed to two benefit art shows to help local gallery owner Laura Dragon who was diagnosed with state 4 cancer this year. The art community quickly rallied to help Laura, as she is an art icon here who has helped many local artists elevate their careers. To show at her venue, {9} The Gallery, has been an honor and an achievement for so many of us. Laura has also gone to Art Bazel in Miami and taken some local artists work with her to great success.

The first event was at the Icehouse in May this year, and the 2nd was in June at {9}. I contributed four paintings and know for sure 3 sold, not sure yet if the 4th has. I was a bit out of commission this month due to my back going out so didn’t get to stay long at any of the art shows, but I did see the first 3 pictured here sold.

“Her Bird,” Acrylic on canvas panel, 10×8 in, SOLD

“His Birds,” Acrylic on canvas panel, 10×8 in., SOLD

“Just Add Worms” is the one I’m not sure yet if it sold.

“Just Add Worms,” Acrylic on canvas panel, 10×10 in., at {9} The Gallery until mid June, have not yet confirmed if it sold or not during the reception.

COMING UP

“Pullet” Acrylic on panel, 9×12 in, unframed so far, $200

“Cockerel,” Acrylic on panel, 9 x 12 in., unframed so far, $200

Two new pieces portray young chickens, at that stage between chick and adult, what we’d think of as teenagers or maybe even tweens. This is a really sweet stage of their growth as they start to get tiny little combs and have all their grown up feathers and are trying to cluck and crow.

The work table is spread with piles of doodles and drawings, words cut out from newspapers, as well as some vintage maps, magazines, and other found treasures. These will be assembled into collages and mixed media pieces over the summer. I have a few paintings that haven’t been shown yet, some not finished yet, and some thrift store finds that will get makeovers as soon as the idea of what to do to them strikes.

Last month, while my husband was at Heat Sync, a “maker space” for computer, electronic, and robotic stuff in Mesa, I spent the afternoon looking at the beautiful shows at the Mesa Arts Center, and then perused several antique stores close by. Though I usually prefer thrift store prices, I did find a vintage toy whose head is now part of a sculpture in progress. Happy to say Gorilla Glue worked very well to adhere the old vinyl to an empty plastic juice bottle that will be its new body. For some reason when I first started using Gorilla Glue it either didn’t suggest to mist the surfaces with water, or I missed it, but that really does help and the directions do say it now. I forgot that and had to poke a hole in the juice bottle and awkwardly spray some water in there, which did cause the glue to start to expand and do its thing. Had it not worked right I could easily have just reglued it, but it did work very well even with the water as an afterthought. Then, I had to poke another hole so it’d dry out, which it quickly did in our arid climate. Under so many pieces of art, there is a “Crap! I forgot to…”

In July, the women’s painting group I’m in, Ladies Who Paint, is having a group show on their wall space at the Artery, 7th Street and Indian School, Phoenix. The gallery also goes by Studio 6, referring to the artists whose studios are in the same building. The theme is “heat.” I don’t have any existing pieces on that theme that are small enough so I’ll be keeping that in mind as I assemble collages in June. Then in Nov, I and Nancy Romanovsky will be sharing our group’s Artery space, no particular theme yet, but they will probably be small pieces. Nancy does beautiful landscapes!

I have not forgotten the plan to do a sequel to last year’s solo show (“Fatal Farm”), but it’s not going to be this year. There’s a growing stack of ideas hastily written or sketched. Just not sure yet what direction it’ll take. I have a couple of artist friends whose work also takes a political or environmental theme, and am not ruling out doing it as part of a broader topic as a two or three person show. Angst over the current administration after last year’s election has impacted what I make. Sometimes I start a political piece and can’t stand to look at it anymore so it doesn’t get finished. I have a feeling that will affect my art for some time going forward. A few pieces have emerged just for fun such as the Pullet and Cockerel portraits though!

Things come up, especially group shows, and I’ll share details as they happen.

Have a great summer!

Two young chicken portraits

Cockerel and Pullet, each 9×12 in. on panel, acrylic, © 2017 Cindy Schnackel

Finished two chicken portraits this week! They’re on my Current Inventory Page

Did a few finishing touches to some other pieces. Sorted through a stack of little drawings to see which I might put in tiny frames and which might go in the collage drawer. Next, will tackle cleaning and organizing because things are creeping outwards again and it gets hard to work. Once my space is all neat again, I’ll get back to a large political themed piece, at least for a few minutes a day. It is hard to find that sweet spot where the ‘joy’ of painting overlaps with the feelings of horror about our current administration. Then, (or maybe instead of!), some more thrift store makeovers. Also wanting to draw more again and eyeing a birch panel we got at a lumber yard, to maybe gesso and do some large scale drawing or mixed media on. I dunno. So many ideas, there is a log jam. Usually, cleaning the studio helps un-jam things.

Studio table overflowing with doodles and works near completion earlier in April 2017. © Cindy Schnackel

Inktense colored pencil (sepia?) and wet brush. © Cindy Schnackel 2017

It’s getting to be in the 90s every day now, a bit hot IMO to paint outdoors, but I’ll watch for occasional breaks and do some more plein air so I don’t get out of practice before fall. Maybe just go sketch the nearby canal as water can be a challenging subject. Even though the canal isn’t very pretty, I’ll be happy to represent it fairly accurately, or put some weird spin on it, either one.

For April I’m seeing quite a few of other people’s shows. I hit several galleries on First Friday and will see a few more yet before the end of the month. Other than the miniatures in the gift shop at {9} The Gallery I have plans to show with a women’s painting group at The Artery (Studio 6) again this summer and then in November. Details TBA when I know more! Things are a bit slower here in summer, and I try not to commit to too much that would require riding the city bus in the heat. Summer is a good time to stay in the air conditioning and work on new miniatures!

Plein Air at Papago Park

Mixed media plein air study, Papago Park, March 2017

Much better experience with plein air the second time out! A friend and I went to Papago Park in Phoenix in March, and fought high winds to paint the rounded red rocks and desert scenery that is next to the Phoenix Zoo, as well as the Botanical Gardens. At some point it just got too windy, our stuff was flying all over, but we each did some work. I did two and this was the better of them. Here’s some of the scenery:

“Hole in the rock” is a popular urban hiking trail.

We may revisit this spot another time, where we can see the hole from our painting vantage point. We were off to the side of it this time. I haven’t climbed up to the hole since I was in my teens or maybe early 20’s, but want to check it out again next time.

Panoramic shot of Papago Park.

The little painting was done on a SOHO cardboard painting panel (8×10 in.) that I had coated with thinned down white gesso days before. I wanted the surface to have a little “tooth” because I wasn’t sure in advance if I’d just draw, or mix painting and drawing. This ended up being done with acrylic paint watered down a bit to be more like a watercolor wash, (leaves the surface’s tooth intact), and Inktense colored pencil, (any dark shade should do; I used “bark”). This was a very limited palette of SOHO alizarin crimson, and one of SOHO’s light yellows comparable to cad yellow light, and Golden ultramarine blue, and some kind of sap green I think but didn’t really need it. I also didn’t end up using much of the manganese blue I’d taken.

I painted very quickly and loosely, going for big general shapes and blocks of light and shadow. After the last time at Brown’s Ranch, where I had “information overload” from all the details to see, I had vowed to take off my glasses if necessary, to filter out the noise and just go for the basics!

The Inktense pencil was great for roughly sketching in some of the branchy marks where there were trees and bushes, and I just blobbed some mixed greens where the bulk of the tree forms were in the foreground. Inktense is a richly pigmented water soluble colored pencil brand. With a wet brush you can get ink and wash like effects or tone underpainted washes, besides doing line work.

The sky changed so fast that I didn’t focus on any particular clouds but just put grayish, blue, or white, where I wanted it and didn’t worry about it. Using the paint both transparently, and opaquely, I was able to alter things a bit if I didn’t like it as it went along.

By the end, the whole surface was still pretty toothy and I could’ve continued working on it at home, even with pencils, but decided to just keep it as is and move on. It’s the first plein air study I’m satisfied with, so far.

Because I wasn’t sure if the Inktense would smear, I didn’t seal this with brushed on acrylic like GAC 100 like I normally do with paintings. A spray was called for so I used an archival aerosol satin varnish. I don’t like using that kind of product because of the chemical solvents etc, so a can of it lasts me a LONG time. Now it’s almost gone, so I’ll seek out a more environmentally friendly version soon.

Anyone have any favorite less-toxic spray finishes?

Papago isn’t far from where I live so future trips are pretty likely.

Sold 3 thrift store makeovers! Plus, Handy Art Walk Links

Windsor Castle Surprise, thrift store makeover, SOLD

When in doubt, you can hardly go wrong by adding a monster or a bird, (or whatever is near and dear to your heart).

During Art Detour weekend, numerous artists showed and sold at the Icehouse gallery. It was a fantastic, fun event, and so great to see so many people and get a chance to chat. I was there mostly on Saturday, and stopped by for just a little while Sunday, and am happy to say I sold three pieces, two of them pretty large ones, (large for me!).

Decapitated, thrift store makeover, SOLD

“Decapitated” was the smaller of the three that sold, about 14 x 16 in. or thereabouts. It seemed to be part of an old sign or ad that was cut out to fit the little frame it was in. A magnificent bird was in it, but whoever had cut it out had lopped off the head, so I made it really lopped off, and the head is walking around lower right. I also added numerous faces, mouths, etc, to the fruit.

Pink Kite Eating Monster, thrift store makeover, SOLD

This, (along with “Windsor”), were the larger ones. The Kite Eating Monster was added to what may have been a kit painting, I could  not tell. It seemed to be a reprint but with little tentative dabs of what may have been added paint here and there, like a paint by number with no numbers, I dunno. I can’t remember now what was there, where the monster is, maybe a mountain or tree, maybe nothing.

At this point I have only a few thrift store makeovers left in inventory! That’s why I went thrifting about a week ago and picked up three reprints on rigid board of some kind. One is pretty big, about one by three feet, the others maybe 9 x 11. All are of forest scenes. I’ve cleaned them up and sealed them with GAC 100, and adhesion is good, so now I’ll think on them, and alter them as ideas come.

APRIL PLANS

I have nothing new planned for April, so far! However, I still have some miniatures in the gift shop at {9} The Gallery on Grand Ave. in Phoenix, an ongoing thing. This month, I hope to get around to a lot of other people’s shows on both First and Third Friday’s artwalk nights. A good site to see what all is going on in the arts here is The Arts Beacon .

If you’re not familiar with our artwalks:

The main artwalk areas are Roosevelt between Central and about 7th St, and Grand starting on Roosevelt and going South. But, by going a bit farther you can see other galleries on Central, Indian School, Jackson, and more. Planning your art walk usually involves driving since the Artlink Trolley doesn’t go to all venues. Artlink often has a map of galleries and shows, however, so take a look at their site to plan your trip.  We (that is, my husband, because I do not drive) usually drive because it’s worth going off the path to see Icehouse, Coe House, The Artery, Practical Art, FoundRE Phoenix, New City Studio, and more. Also, First Studio on 1st Ave just south of Roosevelt, and Olney on Roosevelt and 1st Ave.

We never get to them all! Even during the 3 day Art Detour weekend our record is still in the teens. We kind of lost count this year but it was over 14, our old record. For a single night we rarely do more than a handful as we don’t wish to rush thru good shows, nor pass up the chance to visit with people we don’t usually see except at shows. And, we turn into pumpkins at 9 or 10 pm, so we try to get home before the transformation.

More Thrift Store Makeovers! Icehouse–Art Detour

 

Carrot Love, thrift store makeover (acrylic on reprint, w/frame it came in, warts and all but with some repair). 12 x 16 approx size of reprint. $150

This weekend at the Icehouse in Phoenix, I’ll be showing several ‘Thrift Store Makeovers,’ including some that were not yet done when I did a show on this theme in 2015. That show, ‘Everything After,’ was reviewed very nicely by the Arts Beacon: http://www.theartsbeacon.com/everything-after

The newest is “Carrot Love,” giving new life and meaning to a badly faded reprint in an even badder frame. I made a few repairs but retained the feel of the original. Only purplish hues remained in this reprint so the orange carrot who fell in love with the palm tree really stands out. The alterations are done with acrylic paint.

Bullies, 18 x 21, $300

A Constable reprint gets transformed in my imagination, too.

Bigfoot at Giverney, thrift store makeover, 30 x 40, $300

This Monet bridge screamed out for Sasquatch.

ICEHOUSE, 429 W. Jackson

Sat. Mar 18 and Sun. Mar 19, Phoenix, AZ

Opens 10 a.m. both days, until 5 p.m. (possibly later, stay tuned, I do not have ALL the details yet!)

I’ll also have work at {9} The Gallery in the lounge/gift shop area. Look for my miniatures on a shelf. And, I’ll have work at The Artery on 7th St. and Indian School, and a mural section for sale at the Phoenix Center for the Arts (Saturday sale). The Artery, like Icehouse, may only be open Sat and Sun for Art Detour. Details on all four shows and Art Detour

Art Detour! Mural Sale,other shows, 3 Day Event

Hope to see you during Art Detour, a 3-day event, Fri Mar 17, Sat Mar 18, Sun Mar 19, 2017! I’ll have a few things going on. There is a lot to see on Roosevelt Row, Grand Avenue, Central Ave, and galleries sprinkled throughout the central and downtown Phoenix area.

ART DETOUR INFO: https://artlinkphoenix.com/

MURAL SALE

Every December, during another event, the Phoenix Festival of the Arts, artists create a huge mural and the sections are for sale, for $300 each. Unsold sections are being offered at a sale during Art Detour weekend. Part of the money helps fund the arts and part goes to the artists. I have participated two years, and sold my section one year. The one from 2014 (pictured above) is still available. It’s on plywood and is 4×4 feet, acrylic.

Phoenix Center for the Arts, 1202 N. 3rd St., Phoenix, AZ

Saturday March 18, 2017, 10 am to 3 pm.

Facebook Event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/1492656557434216/

Squareup Catalog page for mural sections: https://squareup.com/store/phoenix-center-for-the-arts/

Screenshot: squareup site for purchasing mural sections from past Phoenix Festival of the Arts. Mine is circled.

GALLERIES

ICEHOUSE

Thrift Store Makeover 2017 Cindy Schnackel

Thrift store makeover of large Monet reprint, Cindy Schnackel

ICEHOUSE, 429 W. Jackson

Sat. Mar 18 and Sun. Mar 19, Phoenix, AZ

I will be mostly at the Icehouse Saturday and Sunday afternoons during Art Detour. The gallery is closed for a private event Friday so I’ll be doing my sight-seeing Friday night as much as possible. I’m planning on taking some of my ‘thrift store makeovers.’ I had a show of just that, a few years ago at the R Pela Gallery, reviewed by the Arts Beacon here: http://www.theartsbeacon.com/everything-after .

I’ve continued to alter thrift store reprints from time to time. The materials and process allow me to sell them pretty affordably. Not sure if I’ll also take some pieces from other shows or any brand new work other than the ‘Carrot’ thrift store makeover above which I did recently. I have a large political themed painting in progress but have decided it’s more important to finish it on non-deadline terms, so it may or may not appear at the Icehouse this month!

There will be many artists at Icehouse for the event, so be sure you make the trip to see it. It’s a lovely, huge space, and not that far from the Roosevelt Row artwalk path!

ARTERY

Bird 6, 6×6 in on cradled wood panel, mostly acrylic

Sketchy People at Work, about 7 x 9 in on wood, mostly acrylic.

The Artery (Studio 6), 623 E. Indian School Rd., Phoenix, AZ

Open Sat Mar 18 and Sun Mar 19 for Art Detour weekend; (not open third Friday).

The “Selfie Show” opened first Friday but will also be open during Art Detour. Besides the women’s painting group I’m part of, the artists who actually have their studios in this building will have their art up. There is a lot to see here.

{9} THE GALLERY

The unsold ones and a few newer ones are at {9} The Gallery in the gift shop area. Most are around 4×4 in, some bigger, starting around $55.

{9} The Gallery, 1229 Grand Ave, Phoenix, AZ

In the Lounge/gift shop area of the gallery you will find several of my miniatures for sale. Ask if you don’t see them, they get moved around depending on the shows but usually are on a shelf. Most are around 4×4 inches, some a little larger, and priced now at $55 in most cases.

I hope to see you if you’re in the area!