Process Footage

A friend of mine shot and edited some beautiful video of my portrait session with Richard. The footage shows a  good sampling of the various stages and trials that we and the painting go through over four hours.

Ryan Finnerty Paints Richard Webb from Ryan Finnerty on Vimeo.

Thanks, guys.
Posted in portrait, tools | 4 Comments

The Excitement of Slug Riding

This is one of a series of one-of-a-kind prints made for the artist book, "Means of Transportation That Don't Go Anywhere." Each copy of the book has my page with a unique drawing of a different spring-mounted animal and the wood type phrase, "Oh, hell yes." Ostriches, zebras, and penguins all have strong graphic characters and made for nice images. Of the 16 variations, the unicorn was most popular, the mermaid was most disturbing, and the semi-inert slug was most amusing.
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Title This Sketch

A fun processes I use for conceiving scenes is to sketch directly with paint and a rough idea. Capriccios, or imaginary scenes, may start with a half-baked scene in my mind or a compositional shape I want to try out. I'll lay in some rough shapes and let things develop and change until a scene emerges. A shrub will become a figure, a cloud, then a shrub again. An advantage to sketching this way is that you get to think in terms of color and shape rather than line. Its also fast, allowing for spontaneity and a little ambiguity. I recently did this with some teens at Gage Academy's Teen Art Studio, where students developed some great sketches and wild narratives. Here's a quick sketch I did a few years ago. The composition wasn't terribly interesting, but I still wonder what must be going on in this scene. Write-in your title in the comments section by Dec. 5th. Best entry wins a signed, numbered Arborial Goats print.
Posted in education, painted sketch | 14 Comments

Goats of Dauphin Island, Alabama

Here's a recent print, made this fall on an antique Chandler & Price platen press. I spent the summer fuming over the BP Gulf Oil Spill, watching footage of oil destroying coastal ecosystems and waterways where I have lived and worked. To focus some of that energy, and to work with some lovely imagery, I decided to make a print about the tree-dwelling goats of Dauphin Island. I carved the illustration block to look very formal, like Victorian natural history texts or medieval woodcuts of fantastic creatures. When I set the antique lead type for the text and rule, I maintained that pre-modern sensibility with centered text, serifed type, and non-standard spellings, abbreviations, and capitalization. I'll include more details about letterpress printmaking, relief-cutting, and setting type in future posts.
Posted in illustration, printmaking | 2 Comments

Seattle Contemporary Artist Panel

Tonight I had the pleasure of hosting six of my colleagues for a panel discussion in my Contemporary Art and Design class at Art Institute of Seattle. The six artists represented sculpture, painting, music, video, design, and lot's of that stuff that doesn't fit neatly into discrete categories. They each gave a brief talk displaying their work, then entertained student questions during a lively Q&A session. It was a real treat to hear 6 artist talks in one night- all eloquent, insightful, and full of beautiful, thoughtful, and quality work. Huge thanks to Sharon Arnold, Carlos Esparza, Jessi Li, Zia Mohajerjasbi, Mike Simi, and Kimberly Trowbridge. Also, heads-up, art world: Clever is out; Sincere is the new Beautiful.
Posted in artists, education | 1 Comment

PRATT Open House

Pratt's annual Open House is this Saturday night! Come see some some art and check out what we do. Featuring: molten metals, dangerous machines, taco trucks, and beer! Also, I'll be doing a portrait painting demo over in Building 3. Come and say hi.
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South Seattle Show

This Monday, Seattle Central Community College will open its Community Art Show. I'll have three portraits up in the exhibition, which runs through November. Also, they put my painting of Liz on the show card!
Posted in exhibitions, hype, portrait | 1 Comment

Don’t Worry

I've been working this whole time... Still making portraits, pulling prints, and teaching in the studio. I've also started lecturing on Contemporary Art and Design over at AI Seattle. These, and upcoming events in November, have put the internet on the back burner. More on those new prints, paintings, and upcoming events later... Here's a portrait of Lauren, who used to help me out with some seriously tedious work during my installation at the Henry Art Gallery. Thanks again, Lauren.
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