Set of 9

This group of paintings is one is nine is ten.  They were painting as a single painting…One. 
Set of 9
 Each of the individual 6x6 quads also had to be worked as a single painting…Nine. 

One plus Nine = Ten.  This painting took me forever.  First because I’ve had several interruptions.  And second, because in the end it is actually ten paintings.  It’s only fair to say that the original painting, the One, started out to be something very different.  That wrong turn took another wrong turn, and yet another which left me with a hot mess to clean up.  

One of 9

Two of 9

Getting the mess to something workable to a point of recovery took several difficult two to three hour sessions.  A lot of work for what is a very small scale set of even smaller pieces.  It was from this point that the real painting began.  Where it took on its own energy and was less about anything I wanted and felt and more about the direction the painting, the form and space dictated.  I don’t often work from a purely structural point of view.  Most often there is a underlying emotive state of mind or a very clear topic or idea behind the work.  But the exercise of making a painting and working out the details just because of how form and balance dictate does occur.  Here’s the result of that journey.  ©2011 Cindy K. Shaw All Rights Reserved

Three of 9

Four of 9

Five of 9 

Six of 9 

Seven of 9 

Eight of  9
Nine of 9

Happy 2011 - "Third Eye"

Ringing in the New Year with my paint brush in hand.  I've been working on something for the last month that has turned out to be a bit of an ordeal.  I had started a piece months ago and set it aside as I worked on other things.  When I returned to it, disaster befell the effort.  I've spent the last few weeks trying to rescue my mess.  I'm happy with my progress and hope to post it by the end of this month.  As the paint became too wet to continue working, I turned to the pastels late in the day yesterday.  Here's the first pastel piece of 2011.   
"Third Eye" Pastel on Paper (12x16)
I'm feeling a shift in what's happening with the pastels and am trying some new things. I do consider this the beginning of a transition for me, and I'm deciding if I actually like it or not.

There is prospect of employment and an actual paycheck later this month.  None too soon. My bank accounts are essentially empty. Almost nine months of unemployment have taken their toll. There may be some long term positive change on the work forefront as well. You'll know more when I do. 

Despite the financial disaster that came with 2010, I had a good year overall. I worked continuously on my art and had some really great response to my work including a few sales. I made some great new friends during the year and got a little taste of something that may lead to a whole new career direction. In the end, I have to say that 2010 was a pretty damn good year. For now, I hope everyone has had a Happy New Year and is ready to dive in and take a big giant bite out of 2011. 

©2011 Cindy K. Shaw All Rights Reserved

Little Works

"Single Whip" Block Print (4x5)
Sold this original block print Saturday night.  "Single Whip" is a Tai Chi Chuan posture an is a recurring subject for me over the years. I think this posture was the first moment that I truly connected to the movement in Tai Chi when I first started practicing. The buyer was very excited about the piece and had a whole list of reasons she connected to the work. I enjoyed listening to her talk about it.

I've been remiss in posting some of the block print work I've done recently and will try to correct that soon.  It is a new medium and I have a lot to learn on every level of the process, but I enjoy it. 

I had another night of good response to my work, which comes down this week.  It has been a very positive experience for me and offered some enlightenment on how I need to show my work in the future. Moving all my work leaves me with a serious storage problem now because there are so many large works that I simply do not have room for in my apartment.  Figuring this out is a common problem shared by many artists.  What do you do with the pieces that have not yet sold?  ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All Rights Reserved

Fall Back

This is a small piece I completed last night. I've been overdue for some pastel work and finally moved some paintings around so I could have access to the easel I use when doing pastels.  My pastel work actually improved when I switched from a drawing table to standing at an easel.  Evidently, I need the freedom of movement that comes when standing...even when the piece is small.

On the good news front, it appears I've sold three pieces from my Featured Artist Exhibit at Gallery101.  I say appears, because it's not definite until the buyer shows up when he says and forks over the money. He has contacted the gallery to make arrangements so keep your fingers crossed for me. ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All Rights Reserved

Returning to My Roots

Paint Brush
One of those necessary evils of painting is taking the time to thoroughly clean my brushes from time to time. I liked the way they looked all lined up in the dish drain. Actually my afternoon was spent going through photographs and printing several of them.
I've been slowly easing back into doing more photography.  My roots are in film photography and I still have some adjusting and a lot of learning to do in the digital realm. I'm experimenting with subject matter from what I've typically done in years past, which was mostly people like the shot below. We'll see what happens.
Lester Jackson
My art degree was in photography so it's kind of funny that my focus over the last few years has been painting and doing metal work.  It took me a long time to make peace with the fact that I don't stay within a single let go of the ideal that I am on thing or another.  So among other things, you'll see more photography from me in the coming months.  The painting is continuing, but sometimes I have to wait for them to dry before continuing work. Other things should be happening in the down time. 

Entry into the Featured Exhibit Space
On other fronts, I was the featured artist at Gallery101 in Fort Lauderdale for this month's Art Walk event and received very positive feedback from so many directions.  It was quite the confidence booster. I can use the practice in talking to people about my work, something I find very uncomfortable much of the time.
Inside the Feature Space
There were 25 pieces up from small metal pieces to pastels and paintings.  After we had it all up and ready I realized that all but four were works completed since October 2009.   The more I thought about it, I realized that I have around 20 more showable/sellable pieces that were also completed during the last year.  Taking stock of what I've been doing was something of an "ah ha" moment.  Sometimes I get a little frustrated thinking that I'm not working consistently enough.  I made a commitment last year to make my art my primary focus and I think I'm succeeding on that front.  Now, I need to work harder at getting my work shown in a greater variety of venues and selling more.  ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All Rights Reserved

I Am

"I Am" Oil on Canvas (40x52)
Just finished!  I've been steadily working on this piece for over a month now. I'll admit that I'm very pleased with the outcome. It's unfortunate that a lot of the small detailing is not visible in a web upload, but you can still see some of it. There are two phrases on the painting: "I Am Not What You Think" and "This is Not What You Think." There are multiple meanings for me in these. I'll let you decide what they mean for you. ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved

Sketchy Connection

As luck would have it one of my blogger buddies, Lynn Chen, approached me a while back about doing a sketch for her. She wanted to launch a product line to help promote her The Actor's Diet food blog.  Needless to say I was flattered to be asked and even more flattered that she wanted to use my drawing.  I highly recommend taking a visit to Lynn's blog. It's a no nonsense approach to healthy balanced eating and an extraordinarily open and honest dialogue about Lynn's past eating disorder battles. It is refreshing to hear someone talk so openly about how events and stresses are known triggers and how she deals with them today. You'll also get a taste of what life is like for a typical actor.   

She is incredibly sweet and damn funny much of the time. Did I mention you should visit her blog? While you are there stop off at her store and buy something. You'll get a little bit of my artwork in the process. 

If that was not enough to confirm her awesomeness, I had a box filled with my favorite cookies from Kizito Cookies delivered to my doorstep.  She remembered I had mentioned them months ago in one of my comments. Such a kind generous gesture.  Big Big Big Thank you to Lynn!! You are fantastic! 
©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All Rights Reserved


"Unfurled" Oil on Cardboard (17x22)
I finished this a couple of weeks ago, but am just now getting around to posting it.  Like many of my paintings this is a third run at this piece. Interestingly enough, the original basic design remained, which rarely happens.  I've gone through some effort in the last few months to standardized pieces that require framing in an effort to defray some costs. I thought I had already trimmed this down to a standard 16x20 size before I got started. As you can see from the dimensions listed, that was not the case.  Trimming it now cuts offs some key elements that keep it a balanced piece so, alas, this will require a custom frame for my un-standard size. Aaargh!

I am working on a large piece that I hope to finish over the next couple of weeks. If you are a fan of my Facebook page, Cindy K. Shaw, Artist, you can see a couple of 'in progress' photos. 

On a personal note, I am fast approaching six months of unemployment and can see the end of my money from here.  I'm taking steps, ugly ones, but steps all the same to get relief from some pieces of the puzzle and have shifted my job search from stop gap to destination.  That was a cryptic way of saying I was looking for something locally as a temporary solution before moving west. There is clearly nothing in Florida so I've focused my application efforts on Los Angeles, which is my goal destination.  It is a better location for me as an artist and will provide the right location for some new career goals.  I've been doing some things of late that has provided a bit of an "aha" for me and owe a debt of gratitude to someone for pulling back the curtains and showing me.  Life's little accidents can make for the best discoveries. Now I just need to get my butt to California!  ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All Rights Reserved


Oil on Wood (40x48)
This has been going through various stages and was actually prepped before my move way back in May. All I can say is I didn't know what direction it would go until I got there. It's a larger scale which is much much better for me and the first painting that really ties in with some of the pastel work I've done.

The day was a trying one and the painting turned in that direction. Things are ending on a much higher note than the start. Getting some good creative time always helps too. I'm trying to get things in order and reset my priorities so I can better follow through with some personal goals. Most of which revolve around my art in some way.  In the end, it's a take back my life objective. 

I'll post pics and such from my NYC trip in the next couple of days. I had a great time all round.  Michelle Krusiec rocked it out in her performance of "Made in Taiwan" and a big congrats to her for getting an encore run of four additional shows!!  It is always great to hang with my friend, JuWanda, and to see her little urchins.  Had some great meet ups with a couple of others while in town too.  ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved

Post Cards

"Drummer 2"
"Blue Fish"
"Grasp Swallow's Tail"
"Little Lady"

Here's a few post cards that I've done over the last couple of weeks.  I'm trying to decide if prints should be made or to just sell the originals.  All of these are (3x5) watercolor on paper and are part of my efforts to create some lower price point items.  Would you buy them? Which is your favorite...if you have one? What would you like to see?

To be honest they are a great way to pass time and keep practicing both in a general keep the juices flowing way and more specifically in playing with watercolors.  It is a challenge for me to work on such a small scale and find it difficult to create the same movement that is present in my full size paintings.  Watercolors also take some adaptation since you work in reverse from that with other paints. Regardless, I'm enjoying the process. 

On a more personal note, I have some big decisions to make after my return from NYC. Until then, I look forward to enjoying the city and hanging with a very dear friend.   ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved

Twilight Notes

Oil on Wood (16x20)
Here's the first painting I've done in quite some time. I've been running about so much since my move that I've found it difficult to get in the right head space to paint. I also think it has taken some effort to get my focus in the new work space at my apartment.  The original drawing of this was of a local DJ who does a great chill urban funk sound.  I love their energy.  A few tweaks here and there may still occur, but for the most part, it is finished.

I started another painting after finishing this one and hope to finish it before I leave for NYC later this month, which will be my first ever visit in the summer months.  I'm going to devote some of my tourist time to Brooklyn this year and was also lucky to coordinate my trip with Michelle Krusiec's "Made in Taiwan" show.  VERY excited about that. I've been wanting to see this show for a few years now and this is the first time I was able to coordinate everything to make it possible.  My friend is likely moving in a few months which means this may be my last free accommodations visit.  Happy I could make it all work.  

Some energy of late has also been spent towards production of some lower price point items. The hope there is to generate revenue and interest.  I'll post some of these efforts in the next few days.  I'm also trying my hand at some block printing.  I find it fun, physical, challenging and look forward to improving my skill level which involves a combination of carving the image and controlling the inking/printing process.  I need practice at all levels.   

The job/business fronts look pretty bleak and I'm facing an action that I don't relish, but looks to be necessary.  More on that another time. ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved

A Little Update

I know I've posted sporadically of late and wanted to give a quick update.  First and foremost my paints are out for the first time since my move.  I'm well past the halfway mark on my painting and hope to be posting it by the end of this coming week.  I was getting a little frustrated and then things started coming together yesterday.  The little video is a slideshow collection of pastel pieces that will be up at a local cafe starting August 1st.  It's not a place known for generating sales, but I appreciate the exposure and a small solo show. 

I got a phone call on "Earthquake" this past Friday from someone interested.  I don't know if there will be a sale just yet, but it feels good to get the inquiry.  It is a favorite piece of mine and I really want it to be up somewhere on a more permanent basis.  

Still no job, but I'm getting a few positive connections for potential clients for the business.  I'm hoping I can limp along to give it time to take off.  ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved

Happy Birthday

Today is my birthday and for your own entertainment I thought I would share my morning text dialogue with a good friend, Kate.
Kate: Happy fucking birthday, ok?
Me: Ok, damn it!
Kate: You better enjoy it...or else..
Me: Ooooooooohh. Scared of you.
Kate: Dude. U oughta be. I been doing my chaturangas.
Me: I see the headlines now. "Middle aged woman killed by pushups."
Kate: Lol! Me or u? What r u now, like 57 or something?
Me: 44 is half of 88 seems like the middle. "Killer found collapsed & exhausted next to the body."
Kate: LOL!!

It's good to have friends that get you. I'm making my favorite cake, a Reine de Saba, which is a dark chocolate almond cake with a chocolate butter cream icing. If you watched Julie and Julia you may remember the scene where they take their first bite of this cake. That swoon happens to me every time.

Later tonight I will meet Kate to go see "Undershorts" which is the R-Rated portion of the City Theatre's Festival of Shorts.  I've been to the regular program before, but this is a first for the Undershorts segment. We hope to meet up after wards for a little dinner and drinks with her partner, who returns today from an out of town trip. Have a great day everyone.  ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved


Sunday was spent at the Fort Lauderdale Pride Parade and had a great time hanging with my gay peeps.  It has been great to see this event grow and develop over the last several years from a few hundred to  several thousands of people.  The drag queens valiantly worked the crowds in full regalia despite a hot day of 90+ temps and full South Florida humidity. Now living very close to Wilton Manors, the gay neighborhood/entertainment area of town, I took advantage of my walking distance locale this year.  While many spent the day celebrating Father's Day.  I was happy for the distraction since the day's festivities kept my mind off the fact that I have no real relationship with my own father. 
After a break at home from the heat and time to clean up, I met up with some friends to walk around a bit more. We finished off the day with some Tapas as a local spot where we all agreed that the fresh mozzarella was some of the best we ever had. The Italian cheesecake was pretty good too.  I went from hungry to overstuffed and happily crashed when I returned home.  Hope everyone else had a good weekend too! ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved


I know I've not posted anything in quite some time, but I think you'll understand as you read this post.  Here's a quick recap since mid-April. I lost my job. First time ever I've had the experience of a company drumming up crap to fire me. They had fired or forced to resign all but two in my region over the last several months.  It was a matter of time before I was next, but it was still disconcerting as I was being set up. They gave up making things difficult since this apparently didn't drive me to quit and started attacking more directly. So I've been in the ranks of the unemployed since then. 
Gallery101 where I exhibit some of my artwork moved to a new location and I assisted in the construction of the exhibit walls and various other items.  Being unemployed made this possible. The new space is great and the various shows/openings have had very large turnouts. I've had some very positive responses to my work there.
I put my house up for sale thinking the market had recovered enough that I might get some bites in 3 or 4 months.  It went under contract in less than 24 hours, which put me in a mad dash to find an apartment pack and move.  I love my new apartment, though it was a challenge to drop from almost 1400 SF to under 700 SF.  In the end I got everything I wanted...a decent kitchen (though I'm still working out my cooking rhythm in the new kitchen), room for an office/studio space and a little outdoor patio space.  It's a cozy little pad that already feels like home.  I think it took Moseby longer to adjust than me.  He's a sensative little pup and was quite traumatized by the whole packing, move and unpacking routine.  
Here's the oversharing part:  It is a relief to be out of my house.  I've wanted to sell and leave the property for at least 3 1/2 years.  I owned the property with my partner at the time and have not been able to completely sever that relationship because of the connections with the property.  Let's just say she left and provided no assistance, financial or otherwise with regard to the house. That totals to around $30,000 of cost that was her portion. (This kind of crap doesn't just happen to straight people.) I've had to come to terms with the fact that I spent six years of my life with someone who really was not a good person, who has not real personal positive ethics.  There are a lot of questions for me in that situation.
After almost 8 years of paying on that mortgage, I walked with $1,300 in my pocket.  Thank you real estate bubble. (My ex demanded her "half" and was not even willing to let me have enough to cover first & last on my apartment.Nice, huh?) The new buyer actually apologized for buying the house at such a low price, about $5,000 more than I paid 8 years ago.  Financially buying out my ex didn't make sense and the house was more of a vessel of sadness than anything else for me. Most of the very saddest  and emotionally difficult times of my life occurred in that house, including the worst depression of my adulthood. Leaving the house was quite freeing to my spirit and dare I say that a little optimism has crept back in. It was a great house and I had great neighbors, but I needed to leave.
The piece above was done in the new apartment last week. Just a quick effort to get the juices flowing again. More to come!!
My metal shop is located near Gallery101 in the FAT Village burgeoning arts district in Fort Lauderdale.  We (I am sharing the space with another artist) are working out the lease details and hopefully I can be up and running doing Metal work there by the end of this month. 
I'm taking the job loss opportunity to put feelers out for starting my own engineering firm, which will allow me the control and flexibility to focus on my art as much as possibile. I passed my licensing exam in April which means I don't HAVE to work under the wing of licensed engineer.  It's time for me to stop complaining about things being done poorly and go out there and do it myself. I hope to capitalize on a very loyal client following. Wish me luck!
©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved

"Enemy Within"

 Pastel on Paper (17x23)
This is an image that has been in my head for a couple of days now. I had to complete the piece today mainly because the image is not pleasant to carry with me. I couldn't focus on other works until I released this one.  I'll say that things that looked so promising turned out not to be. I'm back in a familiar place and thinking dipping my toe in the water was not such a good idea after all.  ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights Reserved

"Reclining Nude"

Cabinet Door 5 - Reclining Nude   Oil on Wood (16x27)
Finished today.  This has gone through several transformations.  It has always been a reclining nude,/figure but it started as more of a line drawing type of piece.  The white negative space proved to be distracting and I went at it again.  The next attempt fell flat and I stared at this for over two months until attacked it again last weekend.  Feeling pretty good about it now.  ©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved

Guitarist & Drummer

"Guitarist" - Pastel on Board (9x12)
There have been several iterations of this over the years that originated from a very rough charcoal sketch over 20 years ago.  Sometimes its a guitar and inothers its a violin, but the underlying image is the same.  I posted this on my Facebook fan page and a friend suggest I do a drummer. 
"Drummer" Pastel on Paper (12x16)
This is the first iteration of a drummer.  I'm certain there will be more & it should be fun to see how these change/evolve.  My friend loved it, which was as rewarding as the process of creating the "Drummer."
I've entered a couple new juried exhibits.  One is in Fort Lauderdale and only open to Florida residents.  The other is based out of New York.  It would be great to win, but I will be pretty happy to be selected for the exhibit portion.  I'll keep you posted.
©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved

Half Moon

Steel 36x60
I finally got around to doing some work on this piece.  I actually completed it last summer but needed to modify some things to make it more stable.  One of those things that had to wait until my shoulder was strong enough.  I didn't want to take pictures because I knew it would change a bit.  It needs a bit of cleanup to get ready for show since it has been outside for several months, but I wanted to share it regardless.  
It normally sits on the edge of mine and my neighbor's yard.  She was happy when I placed it there saying, "It's like I get to share it." 
I have great neighbors!   
I also completed three small pieces yesterday and will post them one by one in the coming days.  
©2010 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved


Oil on Canvas (24x30)
Work completed this weekend. This is called "Evolution" in part because I took a canvas and painted atop something I hated and had lots of negative emotion attached to it.  Now I have something I like with positive emotion attached.  Things evolving in my life these days and I'm traveling along to see what happens. 
Happy Valentine's Day everyone and also a Happy New Year for the Year of the Tiger.   
©2009 Cindy K. Shaw All rights reserved