Monday, July 29, 2013

A timer and a still life

This "count down/up" timer is useful for two things. First, the "count down" function is great for timing poses with a model. You set the time (e.g. 1 minute, 5 minutes), press Start and it rings when time is up so you don't have to be watching the clock. Second, the "count up" function is great for keeping track of my own time at work. It's especially useful for me because I'm incapable of keeping track of painting time in any other way. This method works and I use it every day in the studio. All I need to do is press the Start button when I go in and note the elapsed time when I wind up for the day. I'd like to have another one beside the computer.

The little oil painting below (7 x 5") is on eBay for the next 7 days: view it on eBay

Mary Adam, Still Life with Plumbago, oil on canvas board, 7 x 5"

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Mailed out

The first newsletter was mailed out this morning to about 150 recipients. Just to say, it doesn't duplicate what's in the blog and I will be continuing with the blog as usual.

Sunday, July 21, 2013


I'm starting a newsletter which is intended mainly for new work instead of posting new work here. Initially it will go to email subscribers to my blog, and to many existing email Contacts. If we have not been in touch for a long while I may instead send you an email with an invitation to subscribe (some have already received this). Clicking the link will take you to the subscription form where you can enter your email address. This is to ensure that people don't get unwanted stuff in their mailboxes.

In spite of these precautions, because it's a mass mailing the Newsletter may very well end up in your spam folder or under the new "Promotion" tab in some email providers. Considering how fabulously interesting the newsletter is, this seems unfair, but that's how it works these days. So if you don't receive it and you thought you should, check your spam and/or Promotions tab.

The frequency will be maximum once a month; but it may be less, possibly every two months, certainly not less than quarterly.

I'm aiming to make it useful for people who are interested in art, whether making it or enjoying it or collecting it; something concrete to make it worth your time. The first issue is written and almost ready to send out. If you would like to be added to the mailing list, please click here.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

No name

Mary Adam, Monoprint of an unidentified plant

An unidentified little plant which grows abundantly in my only flowerbed. It's no more than two to three inches high and very delicate though it covers large areas. It must have flowers but I can't see them, maybe it needs a microscope. The roots are superficial in the soil such that it comes out in handfuls, the easiest weeding ever. Without a name that's all I can say about it for now. When one knows the name, I've found, vistas open up ... Google it and it turns out there's tons of information available. Which family it belongs to, its history, where and how it grows, whether it has medicinal value and so on. It's not comfortable not knowing the name. I don't know enough about it to go to the Flora either, one needs flowers for that.

But I can think about it in other ways. It has many tiny rounded green leaves ... the green indicating that they contain chlorophyll which converts carbon dioxide and water into oxygen and sugar. Whenever I think about this, it blows my mind, it really does. How did it come about? The equation looks simple but it's an incredibly complex process.

Photosynthesis equation, image from Wikipedia
The chlorophyll is contained in microscopic structures called chloroplasts, and the chloroplasts in turn contain sub-structures called thylakoids where the complex reactions of photosynthesis take place. Worlds within worlds indeed, my mind is perpetually boggled. Is there something to be said for not knowing a name after all?
Electron micrograph of a chloroplast in an Anemone leaf, image from Wikipedia
Diagram of a thylakoid membrane from Wikipedia