Author Archive for sharonm

Geometric Abstract Painting

Geometric Abstract Paintings

Throughout my art practice, I seem to weave in and out of geometrics in one form or another. Sometimes it is in the form of blocks of colored glass embedded in one of my concrete sculptures. At other times an entire painting consists of only squares of bold color. I am sure that my love of math, especially geometry, has something to do with a subconscious pull to this visual need to use shapes in my art work.

During the pandemic, I have returned to bold usage of geometrics in various forms, even recently including minimal figural shapes painted prominently in the geometric paintings. I love combining geometrics, color and minimalism all in one visual painting on canvas.

Even though I will work on this series for a while, I still occasionally revert back to another series that I keep going, such as my lyrical abstract series. Sometimes I paint on smaller, stretched canvases and at other times the paintings are on large, unstretched pieces of canvas that I attach to the wall to work on. I use a variety of paints, including acrylics, enamels and house paints.

Staying Creative in 2020

Abstract paintings by Sharon Pierce McCullough

On all fronts, 2020 continues to be an unprecedented year. It is also difficult to maintain a creative outlook during this time. Personally, I have been extremely distracted and have to make myself stay focused, to a degree, that is. My sculpture practice started out with a nice thrust, however, as the days have lingered on, I find my focus is further from sculpture than it is with painting.

Painting, especially since I work in abstracts, has been easier for me to work at on most days. I seem to be churning out paintings, primarily on unstretched canvases. And my desire to continually experiment with techniques, color and process have increased at this time. I seem to have started a few new series, however.

One of the most difficult things about staying creative during this pandemic is the fact that all the art fairs, galleries and other art opportunities have fallen by the wayside for now. Many exhibitions have been cancelled and some are now being rescheduled, but time will tell if this continues. So, without the ability to sell, other than online, it is discouraging to many artists. It is certainly a time of possibility to reinvent yourself and your art direction, but much is so up in the air.

But … I am hopeful and I am happy that I can continue to stay creative. 2020 feels like a bust but it might be a blessing in disguise as far as creativity goes!

Large Canvas Paintings

Since November 2019, I have started working on a new series of large paintings on canvas. Although it can present a challenge, it is a very freeing experience. It’s hard to go back to small but the expense and room needed to continue to create large format canvases can make it difficult. But I am a big believer of the old adage “Go Big or Go Home!” It’s that time in my life to pursue big!

These large abstract paintings are still colorful but I have added a twist of random, gestural lines rather than my intuitive line work. Titled my Constellation series, these paintings feature fun, yet whimsical images that I define constellations one might find in the galaxy. It’s a surreal representation of reality.

Art Exhibitions

Concrete sculpture

Almost every month my paintings and sculpture work goes on exhibit in a new art venue. As an artist, I am constantly searching for new exhibition opportunities. It is part of what being an artist entails, especially if you are trying to achieve even a glimmer of exposure and recognition. You have to pay your dues.

While most of my time is spent designing and creating my art, time is also spent delivering artwork to galleries for exhibitions and then often retrieving pieces that haven’t sold.

In August 2019, one of the exhibitions that I was invited to participate in was a Sculpture Walk in Blowing Rock, NC. Although this is quite an endeavor to transport large sculptures to exhibit outdoors, it is an opportunity to meet possible new collectors. It was a beautiful setting and quite a well organized event.

Casting Cement to Make Concrete Sculptures

How to Sand Cast a Concrete Sculpture

concrete sculptures

I recently built a large sand pit in order to cast cement and make large concrete sculptures.  Although many of my concrete sculptures have been either hand-formed over a metal armature or cast from a form I made, I was anxious to try a new method.  The idea of casting in sand is not as new one, but it does give a sense of freedom and flexibility to a sculpture.

It has been a trial and error process, whereby I have had a few surprises.  I usually have an idea of a shape to start out with and then I wing it from there.  I love the texture of concrete and the addition of casting in sand gives an even added texture that reminds me of stone.  Since I don’t plan on chipping away at stone any time soon, this satisfies my desires for texture.

Lyrical Abstract Paintings

Lyrical abstract paintings

Abstract Paintings

Sometimes it is difficult to put one’s paintings into a category.  Although my work can be defined as abstract, it can also be defined as intuitive.  Intuitive,  meaning that there is no plan when I start the painting process.  I just dip my brush and go.  But there is another defining feature about my paintings and that is the free-flowing lines with a palette of happy colors.  These can be termed lyrical abstracts.

Lyrical Abstraction Paintings

Lyrical abstracts share the aspects of being imaginative, emotive, expressive, passionate and subjective.  There is often an underlying emotion that the artist is trying to convey.  In my respect, the paintings can overwhelmingly impart a sense of joy and happiness.  One of the earliest well-known artists to be considered to paint lyrical abstracts is Wassily Kandinsky.  There is almost a romantic feel to many lyrical abstracts.

Even though I am painting in an intuitive manner, it is almost like there is a symphony taking place, as one color takes over the composition from the other.  It is a totally enjoyable process and the results are very rewarding.  I believe my hand is very influenced by the fact that I have always been a very positive and happy person.  I also believe that my style is influenced, somewhat, by the fact that my father was a musician and an orchestra leader.  My paintings often remind me of musical compositions.