Grace M. Smith Artworks

Grace M. Smith Artworks

Thursday, June 24, 2021

In Bed Reading A Book

In Bed Reading A Book - 11.7" x 16.5" marker and acrylic paint on heavy weight paper

Maybe this should have been named, "The Flower That Didn't Want To Be A Flower..." It felt like a flower as I was laying down the shapes but after it was done, I saw myself reading a book in bed! Why not? 

Lately, I've been drawn to pinks, oranges, and reds. They feel soothing and comforting to me in a way blues and greens are not. At least, not right now. I really wanted to get lost in the lines and when I'd put a colour on the page, I felt it could go on forever, in every which way. It made me think of time again, how in a single moment, depending on what you're actually doing, it can feel expansive and elongated. And it gave me the odd impression that I could make time stop or rather, make it last longer, that a minute could go beyond sixty seconds, that the spaces between seconds could be stretched out...Maybe that's what's called, heaven on earth.

I like the orange red against the pink and white backdrop separated by black lines. There's a softness and an opportunity to let go, perhaps to find solace in the folds of a petal or a bed spread...a quilt over silky bed sheets...

What I find amazing about creating a piece of art is its potential therapeutic aspect. I have no care in the world when my hand - which is connected to my heart - touches the page. All pieces become extensions of myself. All pieces are attempts at resolving an inner conflict or attempts at finding peace in a troubled world. 

I find red along my path and it says, "Your Will is strong." I grab for pink and she says, "It's important to be gentle." Then I meet shades of orange and they say, "Get it all out." White comes along and reminds me to bring balance. Black reminds me how to practice the art of refinement.

Friday, June 4, 2021

The Abstract

Creating abstract paintings is a liberating process. For each of these, I started out with specific colours but I didn't know what the end result would be. I never really know until I feel it's time to stop painting. I don't ever see an image in my mind. It all comes together as I put more paint on the canvas. Of course, the images are not concrete or defined. After all, they're abstract paintings...The goal becomes finding balance between the placement of colour, whatever those colours may be.

The first two paintings remind me of flames and fire. More so, in the second painting. And the heat seemed to cool off a bit once the turquoise blue was added although it also gave me the impression of dry know, the idea that something so cold can cause a burn...

The heat is somewhat subdued in the first painting by having added some pops of blue and purple. The flames feel contained. In the second, they appear to be raging.

20" x 24" acrylic paint on canvas


24" x 34" acrylic paint on canvas

22" x 27" acrylic paint on canvas

24" x 30" acrylic paint on canvas

20" x 24" acrylic paint on canvas

I'm playing with cooler colours in the bottom three and I seemed to have had a fascination with rose beige. Blue dominates all three, even in the second painting where numerous colours are being used. I like the use of burgundy and navy blue in the first one. It looks like a structure surrounding some kind of explosion. It gave me the impression of space but then also of a bird's eye view of earth.

I feel like I'm underwater in the third and then again, the aim was simply to find balance between the rose beige and the bright orange red against the blue backdrop.

In the middle painting, I was reminded of a forest or a jungle on a misty day. I could feel the lush greens all around me. It makes me want to lie down with the windows open on a rainy summer night and then go for a long walk the following day....You know that scent of green grass that fills the air when the rain has stopped? There's nothing like it...

Thursday, June 3, 2021

The Ethereal


The Gift - 20" x 24" acrylic paint, string, wax, and dry flowers on canvas

Grace - 16" x 24" acrylic paint, wax and flowers on canvas

The Gift #2 - 16" x 24" acrylic paint, string, wax and dry flowers on canvas

Trouble - 20" x 24" acrylic paint on canvas

Anonymous - 18" x 24" acrylic paint on canvas

Back in 2000, I displayed the first four paintings on the walls of Indigo Books & More. I was experimenting with candle wax and dry flowers. Actually, the flowers didn't go on dry. They dried up as time went on. I was curious to see what the change would be under the wax. Essentially, the wax was used to keep the flowers in place.

I framed the first painting with a white border, which isn't depicted well here because I did a crappy job of taking and then cropping the pic. I like the balance between the yellow string and the flowers. To me, the string feels like an extension of the flowers. I used it to help contain and enclose them, as though it was somehow protection against falling or crumbling. Of course, the string doesn't do that at all. The wax is doing that job just fine. But to me, it feels like those flowers are being protected because of that string...and that makes me feel better. It looks like a gift box waiting to be unwrapped...The same goes with Gift #2. The effects of the black with the splash of red and purple candle wax, though, make me think of Valentine's Day but with a touch of dread...Do you really want to open that box?

Trouble and Anonymous are the result of my own struggle with spirituality and existentialism...having questions that can't ever really be answered. And Grace is an attempt at putting out some of that mental fire or easing it up a bit by offering some mercy and grace.

In Bed Reading A Book

In Bed Reading A Book - 11.7" x 16.5" marker and acrylic paint on heavy weight paper Maybe this should have been named, "The ...