Abstraction Art Painting pandemic


“I want to talk to everybody I can as deeply as I can.

I want to be able to sleep in an open field, to travel west, to walk freely at night…”

Silvia Plath sylviaplath_quotes

March 13, 2020

Visual is what I’m all about and writing down the bones is how I have to begin because writing is not my first language. Since I was a kid I placed my marks wherever I could. This included wood (furniture sometimes), paper,  stones, and sidewalks. You may have had the same experience. Is it art? Hell, who knows. I know whenever there has been a terror deep inside me it has been a go to place.  Make marks and they will tell you something. 

Some of us have been lucky enough to have guides to get us started in life. I had two, Ginger and Janey.  Don’t remember what they looked like. I can’t ask anyone because no one else saw them but me. This is the best part. If I didn’t like something (like soup for instance) I’d just say, “Nope can’t do, Ginger died from that.”

Where was I? I’m hitting the keys not knowing where I am on keyboard or page. It is a river of thoughts and comments. Bear with me. So, these two girls followed me til I was around 5. If I tracked them to here it would help to know what they thought of COVID-19. They would probably remain mute; not their style to comment on stuff they don’t know. But they did know darkness, they knew the signs you use to list it.

Pandemic acrylic on paper

On March 12, 2020 I went down to the basement studio where I do larger art work and metalwork. I could hear the news on tv from upstairs as the corona virus was taking its toll on the population in Italy. I painted the first piece posted to instagram and thought where do I go from here.

So, by March 13 I found myself seeking asylum again in my basement trying to pour out the fear and anxiety as it was growing. Is it art? It is my replacement for medication and whatever drug of choice once did the trick in assuaging the discomfort.

abstract painting

On March 13, 2020 the United States coronavirus death toll 100. March 14, 2020, the United States declared a national emergency. COVID-19 is the technical term for the novel coronavirus. By March 18 the London Museum was the last museum to close its doors.

March 26, 2020

Bin Cao, vice president and director of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine at the China-Japan Friendship Hospital in Beijing, has worked on the front lines of patient care in Wuhan for the past few months. In closely monitoring the disease, he and his team are beginning to unlock some of its secrets. Cao talks to Josh Sharfstein about how the situation has changed in Wuhan, what we can learn about safeguarding providers, the primary risk factors for death, and the ongoing research that may reveal new treatment methods.

Coronavirus began in Wuhan, China…A Doctor’s Perspective from Wuhan March 26, 2020

I started to keep a journal of COVID-19 as it spread globally. I created slideshows periodically with the data posting it to social media. Paintings were done on a range of materials from Arches paper, rice paper, canvas and masonite.

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At the time of this writing there are 3,784,085 total confirmed cases of COVID-19. This includes 1,231,992 cases in the United States, 213,435 cases in Spain, and 214,457 cases in Italy. Total deaths globally are 264,679.


“The Texas Supreme Court ordered a salon owner released from jail after she defied virus restrictions and reopened her business.”

The C.D.C. prepared detailed guidelines for reopening. The White House rejected them, asking for revisions.

The New York Times

To learn more on the coronavirus or if you have questions visit:

Interested in learning more about writing down the bones? Click here to read the book by Natalie Goldberg.

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OMG! The Best LITTLE PICTURES SHOW & SALE Ever starts Sunday!

Opening Reception Sunday November 10, 2019 12-5pm • Gallery Hours, Seven Days a Week 12-5pm

First held in 1904, the Little Pictures Show & Sale is the oldest and largest exhibition of its kind in the United States. This year, the beloved tradition turns 115 and continues to be a strong source of pride for the historic Providence Art Club.  The show will feature over 600 works of art sized at 16” x 16” or less and priced at no more than $300.”

Providence Art Club
11 Thomas St.
Providence, RI 02903

I am so happy to be exhibiting at the Little Pictures Show again this year! Diverse media from over 100 artist members in media ranging from paintings, drawings, photographs, collages, hand-pulled prints, hand made artist books, along with sculpture, ceramics, glass, and jewelry.  Cash and Carry. Don’t miss this event to help support the arts in Providence!

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Driven to Abstraction Part II

The thing about chaos, is that while it disturbs us, it too, forces our hearts to roar in a way we secretly find magnificent.

Christopher Poindexter

Diary entries

After the workshop at the Providence Art Club on Diving into Abstraction with Karen Rand-Anderson, I started a new sketchbook. These early entries were done while listening to podcasts and/or just letting the mind go. It may not be great art, but it is certainly a great meditation practice!

The Fine Art of Chaos

In an age of global instability, the threat of chaos looms. Chaos and Awe demonstrates the aptness and relevance of painting as a medium for expressing the uncertainty of our era.

Edited by Mark W. Scala
Essays by Media Farzin, Simon Morley and Matthew Ritchie

I would be remiss if I didn’t include in this post the recent publication from MIT Press “Chaos and Awe”. This catalogue of the major exhibition at the Frist Center for the Visual arts in Nashville represents a dialogue that has haunted me as a visual artist. Is painting dead? How do I create amidst the chaos and alienation of this world? This opens the door to seeing the deep existential necessity of expanding our “perceptions of knowledge, intuition and spirituality”. I highly recommend reading and perusing the beautiful images in this book as it explores painting as a relevant means of expression and cathartic experience in extreme times.

Code and Chaos

I discovered another aspect of chaos and abstraction while learning code. So much that is beyond me draws me in just the same. I remember the first time I discovered generative art and thought how can I do that? The basics are as follows from medium on generative art:

  • Randomness is crucial for creating generative art. The art should be different each time you run the generation script, so randomness is usually a large part of that.
  • Algorithms — Implementing an algorithm visually can often generate awesome art, for example, the binary tree above.
  • Geometry — Most generative art incorporates shapes, and the math from high school geometry class can aid in some really cool effects.

SVG Animation

We are biologically trained to notice motion: evolutionarily speaking, our survival depends on it

Sarah Drasner
SVG Animations by Sarah Drasner

This book was the next step for me to dive deeper into the possibilities of abstraction and animation. Vector art saved as an SVG opened the doors to my first animated logo!

I continue to research the link between chaos and art as it influences my work. There are so many links to share on this topic here’s just a few:

Try creating generative art yourself! click

Abstraction Rocks!

Abstraction: Handcuff in Sterling Silver
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Driven to Abstraction Diary

Part One: the ’80’s, 90’s, 2000’s

Wow, that’s a long time! I’ll make it brief

“Sunset I” airbrush – not photoshop 🙂 on paper 1980’s

Abstract drawings to limber up for lost wax casting

Renderings as a Jewelry Designer for Precious Metal Manufacturer

Earrings and Pendants in 18k gold with diamond pave painted in gouache on paper.  1999

Fabricated Metals and lost wax castings – 2000 to 2017

Diving into Abstraction again . . .

In 2017, I had the pleasure of taking a workshop at the Providence Art Club with painter Karen Rand-Anderson titled “Diving into Abstraction”.  Eyes closed drawings were part of the direct response to the media and paper close at hand. It reminded me of the sketches I did a long time ago when learning model making.  Seemed like a full circle back to this class and I was very grateful for the trip!

abstract mixed media
“FIRE” mixed media on paper
One of the first exercises I did in Karen’s class.

Part two follows with more about the role of abstraction in fine art, design and technology where 3D software and animation is an essential tool as a graphic artist and chaos is happening with JavaScript!

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Boxes and Boxes of things. . .

Butterfly Collection

“Metamorphosis has always been the greatest symbol of change for poets and artists. Imagine that you could be a caterpillar one moment and a butterfly the next.”

Louie Schwartzberg

Turtle Love Set

“Try to be like the turtle – at ease in your own shell.”

Bill Copeland

Tiny Boxes

“A mighty flame followeth a tiny spark.”

Dante Alighieri
“Angelus Novas” hand painted box

Box constructions from canvas, hardware and acrylic paint. Jewelry styled to fit the theme.

“A woman is like a ghost without jewelry.”
Indian Proverb
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It’s That Time of Year Again! The 114th Annual Little Pictures Show & Sale at the Providence Art Club


“The Little Pictures Show will take place throughout the Art Club’s three historic gallery spaces located on Providence’s charming College Hill steps from the First Baptist Church in America. Over 100 artists, all members of the Providence Art Club, will take part. Works on view will include paintings, drawings, photographs, collages, hand-pulled prints, hand made artist books, along with sculpture, ceramics, glass, and jewelry. All works are sized at 16” x 16” or less and priced at no more than $300. With such a breadth and diversity of styles and media present, there is truly something for everyone. “

Opening Reception on Sunday, November 11, 2018;  gallery hours 12pm – 5pm.  Support the arts in Providence!

Jewelry Collection

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Dark Shadows!

From the Drawing Room Archives


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Back to freeCodeCamp

It’s been two years since I finished the front end web development certification from freeCodeCamp, and recently took a look at what’s happening in the curriculum.  There is so much more to access for free on this massive open online course (MOOC /mk/).  I was immediately hooked and started submitting my solutions to challenges in new updates in CSS (Flexbox, Grid, Web Design Projects) and Javascript (ES6, Debugging, Basic Data Structures, Functional Programing).

Back in my 2016 blog post for web development, I mentioned data visualization courses coming soon such as React and SASS which are now available along with React and Redux.  There are certifications in Apis and Microservices, Information Security and Quality Assurance.  Also, visit the news page which offers numerous tutorials from Intro to Game Development in Javascript to Maths for Programmers.  AND IT’S ALL FREE!

There is so much more to say but for now checkout freecodecamp today while they are  “launching the 2018 New Coder Survey - an anonymous survey of thousands of people who started coding less than 5 years ago. You can take the survey here”.

Happy Coding!

See the Pen Gust of Wind Animate by Lori Labrie (@llabrie) on CodePen.


The 113th Annual Little Pictures Show & Sale at the Providence Art Club

Paintings & One Of A Kind Designs

Opening Reception on Sunday, November 12;  gallery hours 12pm – 5pm.  Support the arts in Providence!


Some design-related lessons this week

Lots of great information from this site! Source: Some design-related lessons this week