“Facets” Abstract Pastel Painting

I’m naturally drawn to geometrics and patterns.  I really enjoy doing all this fine repetitive work.  It probably has to do with being high functioning autistic.  I also love, love, love color.

I started out drawing a grid of 1 inch squares.  Then, I hand drew circles, and divided them into fourths.  Within them, I drew triangles with either straight or curved lines.  The black in half of each sets off the color quite well.  The gray background also sets off the colors.  I just let my creative juices flow, and went with that flow.

My color palette was analogous, as well as complementary.  The complementary colors were yellow and violet, and then all the colors in between on the color wheel.

How fun is this?  It is original.  I doubt you would find another like it.

Here is the online store listing.

facetsabstractart.jpg
Facets, pastel on pastel board, 18 1/2 x 26 1/2 inches
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Dear Mental Health Professionals: — Behind starburst eyes

I am aware that the DSVM (all editions since the 3rd) include Autism as a mental illness/disorder. However, just because they are included does not make the mental health field correct in their assessment of Autism as a disorder. It is included because Western society has a serious lack of acceptance of anything different. All […]

via Dear Mental Health Professionals: — Behind starburst eyes

Prehistoric

This is an acrylic painting I did several years ago.  The impetus for this was a class I took on abstract painting.  As I am on the autistic spectrum, it is natural for me to be literal and detailed, and to paint almost photorealism.  In one way this is fine, but I would like to go beyond just a technical, literal rendering.  So, I’m going down the abstract path for a while.  I find it very freeing.  I don’t have to worry about making something look realistic.

In this piece, I went very organic.  I used natural earth colors, including a lot of burnt sienna.  I first applied acrylic modeling paste to a canvas panel, and let this dry.  Then I painted it.  After it dried, I sanded down the tops of the ribs, and exposed the white underneath.  The idea here is a an ancient natural artifact or fossil that has been exposed by erosion.

Here is a link to the etsy store listing.

prehistoricabstract
Prehistoric, acrylic on canvas panel, 20 x 16

Breaking Out

I just completed this colorful pastel drawing yesterday. (May 2016) I was raised in a very strict religious home. I was also born with high functioning autism, and being artistic I was somewhat “out there”. This drove my mother crazy. She was always trying to make me fit a certain mold that she thought I should fit into. I also got lots of flak, bullying, and teasing from teachers and classmates. I believe that our world tried to make us fit into a certain mold. That is why I made all the small mini paintings within this painting to fit into a checkerboard pattern. It shows how each person is an individual, yet there are constraints on us imposed by family, religion, society.  However, this can be confining, and keep us small. At some point, it really helps to BREAK OUT of the mold people tried to force us into.

I had great fun doing this.  I drew this on a large sheet of Sennelier La Carte pastel board in the color sienna.   I started out making a grid of 1 inch squares on it.  I used hard Nupastels and pastel pencils.  I started making a small abstract mini painting in every other square.  I just went with the flow on this one, and was very spontaneous.  After I was almost halfway done, I decided to BREAK OUT, and very gesturally painted the large element on the lower left side.  Freedom to be me feels GOOD.  God made me with high functioning autism, and that is exactly how I’m supposed to be.  Certain others who can’t or won’t accept me – that is their problem and their hangup.

Here is the listing on my etsy store.

breakingoutabstractart
Breaking Out, pastel on pastel board, 25 1/2 x 19 1/2

Grieving for Autism

outstanding. I was diagnosed at age 38.

Autism and expectations

There is a grieving process that happens after a diagnosis later in life. But it’s not grieving for the autism, it’s grieving for the effort that you’ve had to put in your whole life trying to be someone you’re not.

It’s grief for the you that carried that huge backpack of techniques for appearing normal, without knowing why.

It’s grief for the times you misunderstood situations, not because you were stupid, but because you weren’t capable of understanding them without support. Because the rationale behind them was alien.

It’s grief for the times you thought you were going mad, when you were just suffering from a sensory overload.

It’s grief for the times that you forced yourself to interact, even though you were already socially exhausted, because that’s what people do and you didn’t want to be different.

It’s grief for something intangible. Something that you can’t even be sure…

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Color Effects in Art

Hey guys.  The wind chill was minus 10 Farenheit when I awoke this morning.  I am enjoying my day of staying at home and cooking and doing art.  This morning I baked banana bread and started beef goulash in the slow cooker.  Now, I just got done working on a pastel painting.  I’m using a rough, toothy pastel board of about 20 inches by 16 inches.  It is brick red on the front.  This will help create unity in the painting, as little splotches of this will show up throughout.

I use mostly Nupastels and Unison pastels.  I also use other brands, such as Schmincke, Sennelier, and others.

I started this several weeks ago.  I’m using a photo as a reference point for it.  I took the photo at the Missouri Botanical Garden several years ago.  It was a potted plant – some type of daisy.  Color is my favorite aspect of art. I’ve been told I have a strong sense of light in my paintings.  I’m very glad, because this is what I aim for – color and light.  Since I’m on the autistic spectrum, I also can’t help but be detailed.  That is how my mind works.

As you can see, I’ve painted in the background around the flowers.  I think the flowers will be easy.  I’m doing a secondary color triad (green, violet, orange).  I realized that there is quite a lot of gold and orange in the greens, and an orange influence in the flowers, too.  I really love the lighting effects on the leaves, and on the sphagnum moss. The trick to achieving an effect of strong lighting is to contrast light with dark mainly, and secondarily to contrast color temperatures between light and shadow areas.

I’m seeing that the background is quite busy.  I will just go ahead and do the daisies, then see if and how much I need to soften and simplify the background.

coloreffectsdaisies

Finally A Day to Myself

Yes, I realize I’m very blessed and fortunate as a person the autistic spectrum to have a husband and 2 kids.  I sincerely love them with all my heart.  But for 2 weeks straight I had  almost no time to myself with the boys at home.

Today I finally got a few hours to myself!  Is is very exciting and such a relief. I spent the day removing ornaments from the tree, listening to alternative news, using my SAD light during breakfast, taking an hour walk outside, have lunch at ny local cheap Chinese place, and just relaxing and taking my time.

Here are some nice photos from the walk I took. I really love that I’m walking outside daily in spite of cold weather now.  It makes winter less of a drag.

Above is the trunk of a river birch tree.  I love the papery layers of pink, salmon, and soft yellowish tans.

This is Rock Creek which was very flooded just a few days ago.