Ginnie Cappaert's Blog

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

"When it all comes together, a creative life has the nourishing power we normally associate with food, love and faith." - Twyla Tharp, The Creative Habit

I'm guilty of having many books in my personal collection, I need more bookshelves.  I consider these a 'need' not a 'want'.  A true necessity in life.  My artist friend, Shan, just reminded me of  one of my all time favorite books by Twyla Tharp, 'The Creative Habit' that she was rereading this winter.  Now I have to tell you,  I have re-read this book at least half a dozen times already, but I immediately retrieved it from my bookshelf to find just the perfect amount of inspiration and topics for art journaling and discussion. 
What I really noticed on my brief glimpse through the book was again the focus on balance in life.  Making time for it all.  Making time for the self care, yoga, reading, exercise, family, friends, and studio time too!  This balance is again a 'need' and so very important as creatives struggle to find time to make their art.  This seems to be a widespread topic with many of my friends and artists all over the globe!
Twyla talks about 'being in a bubble' and how we can relate that to a state of mind. She believes that there are no rules to this bubble theory and that it can exist in peaceful moments and chaotic moments.  After all, we have LIFE, jobs, families, and responsibilities BUT we also have that desire to create and make art.
My best take away and advice to these issues is to treat our life as a bubble and make time within that bubble to fill our needs to create. This may mean saying no to doing certain things or going certain places but knowing to find that 'balance' and saying yes to some things outside of our art life, too.  I think it becomes a habit.  We can create the life we want by developing good habits filled with variety and maximum use of our time as well as taking some much needed 'downtime' as well.  In her book she states that 'being in the bubble does not mean being a hermit.  You can function out in the world, but wherever you go the bubble goes with you."
The last few snowy days I have taken time to practice yoga, read, and stay in my PJ's way longer than I should have!  But you know what, that's ok, I have to keep reminding myself that is all part of living life, a 'bubble style life' as an artist. 
                                           For my solo show in Santa Fe, "Color Snaps"
                                                    8x8" oil and cold wax, framed

Monday, February 11, 2019

I am so excited!  I was invited to teach in the South West of France and am making plans for this incredible vacation/workshop experience in 2020!  Looking forward to some work and play time!

Ginnie Cappaert is a full time visual artist and has maintained a professional art practice for more than twenty years.   In this travel and painting retreat, Ginnie will help students to find an intuitive style of painting that seems playful, while working in the medium of oil and cold wax.  Daily demo’s and discussions, group exercises as well as individual attention to guide students to discover their own personal style will be of importance.  Ginnie will focus on the use of color, form and line as well as adding layers to create abstract paintings with interesting color fields inspired by the French countryside.   In this ten day painting experience, each student will be working at their own level with plenty of time for journaling, contemplation and exploring the local villages which Ginnie believes all help create ‘authentic’ artists and original work.  She believes in finding the ‘deeper meaning’ behind your painting and believes art is not just about techniques.
For over ten years, Ginnie has been exploring the medium of oil and cold wax.  She studied with American painter, Rebecca Crowell and has developed her own style rich with color, layers, mark making, texture and form.  She paints full time, owns her own gallery, writes and blogs about art, teaches, mentors and enjoys a life filled with art, travel, yoga and her horses.
Ginnie feels life and art is all about taking chances and responding to the results which will make this an inspiring time for mind, body and soul.  Students of any art level are welcome to join us for this playful, creative art retreat in the Southwest of France.

What’s included in this Creative Holiday
  • 10 night’s lodging (single or shared occupancy)
  • Daily breakfasts, lunches and aperitifs
  • Gourmet evening dinners
  • Transport to unique painting sites
  • Daily excursions to nearby historic villages- this is a great opportunity to take plenty of photos, sketch, shop and enjoy French culture.
  •  24 hour use of the art studio and extensive art library
  • Round trip transport to Toulouse International Airport
  • Services of bilingual guides
  • Painting  demos with group and individual instruction
Airfare, a couple of meals and tipping not included.
For more info you can visit Ginnie’s website at www.gcappaert.com or find her on Facebook and Instagram or read her blog at www.blog.gcappaert.com.
For all the details and to register, please contact Ginnie directly by email:  info@gcappaert.com

Thursday, January 24, 2019

On this cold January evening, I sit down to think, to journal and then to share with you some thoughts or shall we say, advice for artists.  I think I am, or I hope to be, a mentor to many aspiring artists, a source of inspiration and as always I am willing to share what I have come to know about art in the past 20 plus years of my career.  
When I decided to put these thoughts in to a list of 25, I found that I could have probably continued on because all of these ideas came to me quite quickly and this was written within a few minutes.  Some days I wish my painting would come this easily!  So - enjoy and I hope this inspires you in your art path!

Advice for Artists….by Ginnie Cappaert    Thoughts from my studio, January 2019
1.       Love yourself.
2.      Love what you do.  Simply create because you don’t believe you could breathe or live otherwise.
3.      Make art your life – every waking moment!  Have your eyes open to see the beauty around you.
4.      Balance (relates to #3)!  Remember, the best life is filled with healthy balances.
5.      Keep your soul/spirit nurtured – yoga, meditation, journaling – you get it!
6.      Stay physically active – every day! Fresh air clears your mind and refreshes you!
7.      Find your tribe! Those friends that ‘get you’, encourage you and share similar interests, they are worth more than gold!
8.      Learn to accept rejection, there will be a lot of it!
9.      Stay positive!  Do not let negative energy take up space near you!
10.  Be Strong, you are putting your life work and pieces of your soul out there for all to see.  NOT all comments will be nice.
11.  Study art history!  There is so much to learn from the masters and those that came before us.
12.  Attend gallery openings and museums.  Be inspired.  Talk with other artists.
13.  Sit in Stillness.  It is very difficult at times, but often good things come from it.
14.  Find a space to create.  Large or small doesn’t matter just so that you have a space to call your own and that is easy to go to when you are in the creative mode.
15.  Read!  Read about art, other artists, techniques, deep soulful thoughts, quotes etc.
16.  Use social media as a tool for learning and sharing about art but be careful of wasting too much of your precious time on it.
17.  Learn techniques, but ALWAYS, ALWAYS add spirit and soul from within to your work!  That’s where true art comes from!
18.  Find your own voice.  Do your own art, your way!  This takes time.  Be your own person and learn how to talk about your art.
19.  Focus.  Focus on your medium of choice and do it well.  Try to keep yourself from getting too scattered.
20.  Apply to shows, exhibitions and calls to artists.  Stay in the art circle.
21.  Remember that not everyone will like your art!  That is ok!  Everyone’s varied taste is what makes the world so interesting.
22.  Appreciate and be grateful for all your collectors, supporters and galleries that represent you.
23.  Work and rework your Bio, Statement and Resume.  Keep it up to date!
24.  Have a website specific to your work and updated on a regular basis.  Business cards and brochures are great too!
 25.   Be kind!  Be kind to everyone.  Those that love  your work and those that take no interest in what you do.  Those who can and  cannot afford to buy your work, too!  Mentor, share and encourage others.  We were all beginners at one time.
       To be continued….
   Ginnie Cappaert,     January, 2019
We all need a space to create!  After a studio 'redo' I'm really loving my Michigan studio this winter!

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

"I will write PEACE on your wings and you will fly all over the world." - Sadako Sasaki

Peace.  Gratitude.  Holidays.

The Holiday Season always 'shifts' my studio time a bit.  I certainly am enjoying the six months of a slower pace in the Door County Gallery Season, but maneuvering my energies into studio time and holiday time can be challenging.  I just had lunch with a couple of my favorite artist friends and we discussed that in depth today.  How we divide our studio time with holiday and family time.  Margaret pretty much sums it up in her calm, laid back way of thinking by just accepting and acknowledging that it is the holiday time and that is how it is.


That is what I will work on.  Meanwhile, enjoying some get togethers with friends and family and setting aside the intense studio focus for a little fun is what is on my plate for the next few weeks.  I hope you all enjoy your Holidays and remember to hold the gift of gratitude close.  Cheers!

Saturday, December 8, 2018

"Oryoki" which roughly means, "that which contains just enough" from the book 'The Zen of Creativity' by John David Loori

I am settling into my winter studio routine and I'm feeling a sense of comfort, of familiarity and a pattern to my days.  My painting time needs a sense of calm and quiet, like the winter season brings.  Here in the north we already have a soft blanket of snow covering our landscape, and a sunny day here and there filtered with mostly grey skies.  All of these reflect light in different ways.  The shortened days make us turn inward to reading, writing and painting but 'oryoki' reminds us that contains just enough for us at this moment.
This winter I am trying to balance some challenging days in the studio with some 'outbursts' of wow happenings!  I have learned over the years that just being in the studio is what is important, the bad and the good all blend together eventually.
Enjoy these beautiful winter days and find balance in your moments!
Birch Installation was a 10 piece installation purchased by Aquity Insurance.
Oil/cold wax/dry pigments on wood panel.  2018

Friday, August 31, 2018

"How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives" - Annie Dillard, The Writing Life

I have just stumbled upon a really good book, 'BROAD STROKES, 15 Women Who Made Art and Made History (In That Order)'  by Bridget Quinn.  It's a fascinating book and discusses the art and life of many women artists, who no doubt struggled in their time as wives, mothers, women in an art world dominated by men.  They still did what they wanted to do and many very successfully.    I highly recommend the book!
Author Bridget Quinn explores the lives of Lee Krasner, Louise Bourgeois, Alice Neel and more.  Some I haven't heard of like, Ann Mendieta and her earth art.
As my 'baby' starts his 'first - last - day of school' as a senior in High School next week, I look back on all the years that I, as a wife, mother and artist juggled my art career and followed my passions, never letting anyone tell me I couldn't do this!  I wish every woman/artist had been as lucky as I have been.  No, it was not easy.
Now, I don't have the 'wife' part anymore,  but I still juggle the mother and artist and gallery owner lifestyle, but always being the optimist I see it as all good.  I enjoy my quiet times in the studio as well as my time in the galleries meeting with collectors and installing my paintings in their beautiful homes.  Life is good and Cheers to all the women who are busy being Moms and following their art dreams!

Saturday, August 18, 2018

"Pockets of silence, where we can all root and grow.  We must hope we can find them" - Rothko

One of my fav painters, Mark Rothko, inspires me by his luminous layers of paint and his division of space via color fields.  Although my paintings are based on landscape, they often use the manner of color fields to divide the space and many times with a horizon line.
Not one to 'fight' my paintings (or fight anything for that matter), I often let the painting tell me how the 'space' will be divided.  Often times it is a distinct horizon line, yet at other times their may be no horizon line or a softer version of one. 
As our Summer slowly transitions to Autumn I can gently feel the evenings becoming cooler, a sense of peace.  My forest painting series have been a long series for me and in many different versions and seasons.  I definitely find my silence in the forest, ever since I was a young girl, that is where I find peace.  I love visiting the city, but definitely need the 'green space' and the 'woods' to balance and center my life.  My forest paintings range from winter (crisp whites with brilliant blue skies) to spring (the lush colors of new growth in the forest, the beautiful greens and often times the carpets of forget me knots on the forest floor) and of course the Autumn series (including warm colors, earth colors and a sense of restfulness).
As our seasons continually transition here in the Midwest, I find myself grateful for all the inspiration and beauty around us.  Take the time to really notice the beauty of nature.  Enjoy your day!


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