Big skies, beginnings of a project

Big skies… this is the working title for a new project I’m working on. I announced last week that Sechrest Gallery at High Point University invited me to show Paper Mountain, Sky Project and a group of paintings for a solo exhibit in the fall, and installation for the show starts exactly 90 days from today. Because I want to make a lot A LOT of paintings between now and then, I decided what this exhibit needs is a wall-full of paintings – sky paintings to be specific.

So I am making 50 sky paintings that will literally cover one of the gallery walls.

The paintings will be hung in a grid 19ft tall and 17ft wide.

I’ve decided to use acrylic on Yupo, a polypropylene paper. The acrylic dries relatively fast compared to oil paint, so I can easily stack finished paintings as I work. As for the Yupo paper, I like how slick it is to paint on, and I know that it will sit against the wall rather than buckle.

Why am I using paper rather than wood or canvas to make these paintings? I want the images to sit flat on the wall rather than jut out into space like a panel does. I don’t want the objectness of a panel.

I’ll share with you progress on this project as I go, so stay tuned for images as I figure things out.

In the meantime, I’ll leave you with an image of a sky I particularly like. This is Field and forest with red, one of the paintings from my Tiny Landscapes collection. I enjoy being able to see some of the underpainting of the sky… bits of pink and gold glimpsing through layers of sky and cloud. This little painting is acrylic on wood panel and measures 6×6 inches.

Searching on the Wind… and Paper Mountain is coming BACK!

I’m super excited to share with you that the Sechrest Gallery at High Point University has invited me to show Paper Mountain, Sky Project and a group of paintings in a solo show this fall. If you’ve been following my work for a few years, you might remember Paper Mountain as the 14-foot tall mountain of 1200 folded paper cranes I suspended at Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art in spring 2019. The project took a couple of years from start to finish, and seeing it installed was truly validating as an artist, so I’m happy to be able to exhibit it in another space and to share it with more people. Stay tuned for more about that as we get closer to installation week in October.

With its sheer size, Paper Mountain can be an immersive experience for viewers. While my newest paintings aren’t monumental in scale, the paintings in the Searching on the wind collection are immersive in their special own way.

These landscapes evoke wide open spaces: big skies, meadows, forests, mountains and rivers. Each painting is a meditative play of shapes and colors.

If you let them, these paintings may just transport you to your favorite mountain or river or forest… 

Find them all HERE and please don’t hesitate to message me if you have questions about any of the work, payment or shipping.

PS: Recently a client asked me if it was safe to ship paintings these days. The answer is YES! I am shipping artwork wherever USPS, Fedex and UPS will travel.

Gone Fishing

I’m excited to say that I am on an actual family vacation – a road trip even! – to Washington DC this week. We are going for walks on the National Mall and getting in trouble for standing too close to paintings in museums (oh wait, that’s just me).

Next week we’ll head up to Maryland to visit my in-laws on the Chesapeake Bay. My husband Tim will make beautiful cyanotypes while my son and I run around and pretend to be sharks in the water.

This is the kind of stuff that refuels me and my artistic practice. I hope you’ll take some time for yourself this week too.

In the meantime, here are a few things from the studio:

Last chance to see my paintings at PTI airport in Greensboro before they come down on July 8th. They are at lower level door 5 (near the baggage claim). These works are available.

Field and forest with violet and purple” recently sold. Some of my Tiny Landscapes are still available, and you’ll find them here.

Have you been to Storm King? For this painting in my Searching on the wind collection, an old friend sent me a photo she took while visiting Storm King in NY. Storm King is a remarkable sculpture park with a collection of mammoth artworks set in a wind-swept landscape. Ever since I visited it years ago with my husband, I’ve wanted to go back. You’ll find this painting in my shop.

abstract landscape painting in a home office

Storm King,” one of the paintings in my Searching on the wind collection.

“Searching on the Wind” a New Painting Collection

In this series of landscapes the feel of wide open spaces meets a soft geometry – a meditative play of shapes and colors. 

What started this body of work was a question I asked on Facebook: What outdoor spaces bring you peace and happiness? Friends sent me photos of their special landscapes, and I used those images as a jumping off point to create small paintings, my Tiny Landscapes.

Using those paintings, I then created the larger works in “Searching on the wind.” Some of them stayed true to the small paintings, and some veered in other directions. After working on a painting for a while, it starts to take on a life of its own, and if you know how to listen, paintings will “ask” for one thing or another. Finished paintings are a conversation between the artist and the painting – or maybe with the muse or the universe…

I hope these paintings will evoke the poetry of nature and bring a sense of wonder and a breath of fresh air into your life.

Find them all HERE.

If you’d like to read more about what I was thinking as I started these paintings, check out this blog post about slowing down and enjoying the process.

 

Botanical drawings to be featured in a wildflower guide!

I’m excited to announce that some of my botanical drawings have been licensed for use in a soon-to-be-published wildflower guide!

I got the news last week after a publisher found my drawings and contacted me about making some others for a new guide they are working on.

When the project is completed, I’ll share images and links to the finished guide here. In the meantime, you can find some of my original botanical drawings here, and if you’re looking for a gift for the writer in your life, my greeting cards are back in stock! These feature ten of my botanical watercolors of flowers, seeds and leaves found in North Carolina. Find the cards here.

The Ultimate Guide to Building a Studio Practice

I was recently invited to write a post for The Abundant Artist Blog on the mindset needed to build a sustainable creative practice, and I’m happy to share with you that it’s live!

artist jessica singerman painting in studio

“For many people, when they think about an artist at work, they envision uninterrupted marathon hours of studio time… something that isn’t realistic for most artists.

A studio practice needs to be sustainable – meaning you can keep it up for many years, whether you have family obligations or other jobs – without burning out. There are obvious necessities for a studio practice – like space and time – but to sustain a practice for a lifetime involves your mindset.

What is mindset? Simply put, mindset is the way you think. You can reframe the way you think to make your thoughts work for you, not against you.

I talk about the artist mindset in two ways: the mindset for your creative practice and the mindset for selling your work. In this post, I dig into how to cultivate an artist mindset to drive your creative practice. How do you prioritize the making part of the equation and keep creative momentum?

With mindset, people often focus on having a positive outlook. Positivity is part of it, but I advocate having a resilient mindset. The resilient artist mindset means being equipped to keep making your work even when you don’t feel like it. Develop the tools to carry you through lulls in your work and to break through blocks. Recognize that life might not be all kittens and roses, and you will have challenging moments. Having resilience lets you know that you can and will work through external and internal obstacles.

I’ve found nine keys to building a resilient artist mindset and sustainable studio practice…”

Continue reading this post on The Abundant Artist blog.

Botanical Drawing Greeting Cards for pre-order this week!

violet botanical drawing

Due to popular request I’m doing a print run of my Botanical Drawing Greeting Cards this spring!

Pre-order your cards here until Thursday April 15th. ⁣

This is a pack of 10 greeting cards with my botanical drawings on the front. Each card features a different plant and is ready to be personalized on the inside. They come with envelopes.

The plants featured are all found in North Carolina and according to a good friend, the cards are a perfect gift for a teacher, neighbor, friend, family, minister – particularly if they love nature.⁣

Cards will ship in May and are only available direct from me.⁣

See them all and get the details HERE.

Introducing Portraits!

Last night I read an article in the *New York Times Style Magazine about terroir. It describes a vintner in Cleveland who planted vines in an abandoned city block to make his wines. It also features a baker who put out sourdough starter in various spots in New York City so that each one would pick up flavors from its environment. (Note this was pre-COVID times.)

If you’re interested in wine, you might know terroir as a French word used to describe the environment in which a particular wine’s grapes are grown. The makeup of the soil, altitude, sunlight and rain, all of these factors influence the flavor of a wine. This got me thinking about how I could apply the concept of terroir to portrait painting.

Last week, I made a painting of my husband Tim while he napped in my studio. I’ve drawn him many many times, but over the course of 16 years together, I hadn’t painted him yet. I purposefully included the studio space, tools, a cool chair and bright blanket around him. All these elements were fun to paint and gave me an excuse to play with line and colors. And all of these elements around Tim contribute to how his finished portrait turned out. All the elements in the space around him are a sort of terroir for this portrait.

Making that painting reminded me of how much I love painting people, so I decided to launch portraits this week.

I’d love to make paintings of people in either indoor or outdoor spaces… with things that bring them joy… a bike… some books… plants… musical instruments perhaps… 

You’ll notice I’ve included my painting of two dog buddies on a mountain top because our fur babies make great portrait companions!

I currently have some beautiful birch wood panels I’ve been preparing, and these will be ready this week to start making paintings. They are 24×18 inches with 1.5″ edge (painted white), and will come wired and ready to install on your wall. A portrait of this size is priced at $2300 for 1-2 people (or pets!), and I’m happy to work in other sizes and with larger groups as well.

Check out my custom artwork page for details on how the commission process works, or email me if you’re ready to get started. I look forward to making your portrait!

*Ligaya Mishan. “The Growers, Bakers and Beekeepers Embracing the Terroir of American Cities.” The New York Times Style Magazine 26 Mar. 2021.

Creative Detours

Creative Detours: an exhibition of paintings by Jessica Singerman at the Forsyth County Public Library
January 1 – March 31, 2021

(January 11, 2021, Winston-Salem, NC) Award-winning painter Jessica Singerman announces her exhibit of paintings entitled CREATIVE DETOURS, opening at the Forsyth County Public Library on January 1 and continuing through March 31, 2021.

In this collection of paintings, viewers will notice that some are more impressionistic and some have more recognizable elements – the work hovers between abstraction and representation. In this way, Singerman explores the way things look (shapes, colors, line, edges, etc…) and the way things feel (hot sunlight, cold wind, the smell of leaves, birdsong, etc…).

Singerman’s work is inspired by the poetry of nature, color and light in the landscape, seasons, and the passing of time. Says Singerman, “All of our senses are awakened when we spend time outside. The rhythm of steps while hiking, the whir and clicks on a bike ride, the changing shapes of light and shadow between trees, the sound of birdsong—the memory of all these impacts on my senses feeds into my process of abstraction. I love to explore my experiences in nature through the elements of color, shape, line and composition.”

Viewers may recognize Singerman’s paintings from the billboard featuring her work on Route 52. She was one of the 2020/2021 Triad region ArtPop Street Gallery winners.

The artwork in the exhibition can be purchased at www.jessicasingerman.com.

About the artist: Jessica Singerman lived alternatively in France and the United States during her early life. Singerman earned her BA with Highest Honors in 2002 from the College of William & Mary, Virginia, and her Masters of Fine Arts in 2004 from the University of Delaware while on a fellowship. Her award-winning paintings and drawings are exhibited and collected internationally. Singerman lives and works in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

FORSYTH COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY, including CREATIVE DETOURS, by Jessica Singerman, January 1 – March 31. 660 W 5th St, Winston-Salem, NC 27101, www.forsyth.cc/library/, 336.703.2665

Find this article on YES! Weekly. Thank you to publisher Charles Womack and to YES! Weekly for the write up!

High up in its windy nest, oil and acrylic on canvas, 40 x 40 inches

Solo exhibit at Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art

Jessica Singerman - hold us in the light

On November 6th 2020, my newest solo show “Hold us in the light” opens at Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art in Charlotte, NC. Read on to find out about the work in this exhibition.

There will be free timed entry for this opening. Reserve your time slot here.
Note, my exhibit coincides with the “Home” exhibit, so the reservation link will take you to that show’s reservation page.  

From Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art:

Join us for an exhibition of intimate, responsive work by Jessica Singerman. In a significant departure from her work that celebrates nature, color and light in the landscape and the passing of time, Singerman embraces personal questions around her work and how it relates to the pressing societal issues of today.

Artist Statement:

At the end of spring 2020 when there was a swelling of anger and sadness amidst protests in the US, I wondered what – as an artist – I should be doing in response to what was happening around me. In times of turmoil, I have often questioned the validity of my work, and with practice I’ve learned that it is in those challenging times that the work of an artist becomes especially important, both for the artist and for the audience. However as a white artist, I was unsure of what was appropriate for the direction of my work. It seemed disingenuous to make politically charged paintings when my current body of work dealt with an entirely different subject matter. How could I make work that was culturally relevant yet stayed true to the artistic concerns I’ve pursued for years?

The morning of June 1st I made drawings of a table and chairs in our screened-in porch, a nod to some Richard Diebenkorn paintings of a single chair in an interior. Later that day in the studio, I decided to make a painting using one of those drawings as a reference. This painting was quiet and contemplative. I made another painting and another, all evocative of human presence, and each one a play of color and geometry and composition. In these paintings, through the careful arrangement of shapes and color, I envision creating space for conversations – hopefully the kind of exchanges that bring real profound understanding. Is this too much to want for my work? Maybe, but making art is in itself a hopeful act, and so it helps me feel optimistic.

Get a preview of the work in this studio visit.

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