Seó Bóthair is Gaelic for “Uncontrolled situation,” “circus,” and “roadshow,” as well as being the title of my watercolor/ink/dry pastel series. Hopefully you’ll find a mini-gallery at the end of this schpiel, assuming I did this WordPress thing right. As a Gen-X gal, blogging isn’t my forte. At some point, I’ll figure out how to put up a “gif” and all hell will break loose. It’s likely that I’ll be editing this post over the next few days. Like, a lot.
I’m offering limited edition, embellished, matted, framed prints for $100 a piece on Friday, November 24, with free shipping. Whatta bargain….and how original a holiday gift would that be? Plus, you have the joy of not only giving a one-of-a-kind gift, but supporting outsider arts.
After November 24, paintings will go back up to their usual price of $125.
So how about some other questions about this funky collection? Following is an interview between Vivacia K. Ahwen and Rachel Robbins:
VKA: What is this whimsy?
RR: So glad you asked! Seó Bóthair started as a freestyle watercolor series which I painted over a course of thirty days, when I was experiencing that “Stuck in a rut” feeling that so many of us deal with periodically. Somehow I stumbled across Barbara Diane Barry’s Painting Yourself Out of A Corner: The Art of Getting Unstuck. For 30 days I painted what were more or less liquid scribbles, trying to keep my time limited to short bursts. As with most self-help books I read, I deviated from The Rulez, but used it as a starting point and springboard to rebuild my engine.
VKA: You said watercolor, but I’m seeing a bunch of black ink here, as well. And the embellished prints have pastel dust on them.
RR: Right. I set aside the journal of paintings for a year, found it stashed on my writing porch, and when I was bored one night decided to trace the pictures I could find within the splashes/smears/streaks of color. The ink gave the pictures a stained glass quality which appealed to me, and I kept going with it. Part of the pleasure in looking back at that month was how quickly my mind worked to find the order in colorful confusion.
VKA: “In all chaos, there is cosmos.” That’s Jungian theory, right?
RR: Yep. Gold star, Vivacia. That psychology minor comes in handy sometimes, doesn’t it?
VKA: No snarkiness, please, Rachel. (Snark is my department.) Some of these paintings are freaking me out, TBH. Angels, demons, monsters, fantasy creatures, some Syd and Marty Kroftiness…But I like all the naked humanoids, gotta say. Can you speak to that?
RR: Thanks, I guess? People seem to enjoy them, and find the fun despite the occasional creepy moment. Playful is what I’m really going for. As you look closer, and spin the pictures around, you’ll find all kinds of critters. Hang them upside or down, there’s magic all around.
VKA: Hm. Okay, so how can I get one?
RR: I’ve got a PayPal set up. You’ll be using my “real” email, as opposed to Ms. VKA’s account. I’m firstname.lastname@example.org. Paintings will arrive within two weeks after I receive payment.
VKA: $100, you say?
RR: Yep. Obviously, if you live outside the U.S., it’ll be more…as it costs an arm and a leg to mail overseas.
VKA: Fair enough. Any closing comments?
RR: Yes. I’ve been asked to do book illustrations/cover design before, and that’s something I’m totally up for. However, indie companies seem to offer royalty-based only, and I need an ACTUAL payment to cover my materials, time, craftsmanship, et al. Seó Bóthair is different from my usual styles, I tend to do a lot of mixed media, sculpture, fabric art, and acrylic on canvas. That said, I’m flexible, and can adjust styles to what your needs are. I’m also interested in designing album covers and skateboard decks, so spread the word. Again, my email is email@example.com. Please write “ARTWORK” in the subject line, so I don’t mistake you for spam.
VKA: Perfect. Thanks for sharing your time, Rachel. I mean, it’s not every day you get to hang out with your alter-ego, right?
RR: Right, Vivacia. And happy Turkey (or Furkey) Day, one and all….Wishing you your very own seó bóthair. Adieu!
~~ RR and vka
P.S. Find me on Twitter: @SheRaPrincess is my handle. Mostly I just troll Donald Trump, but occasionally post something semi-noteworthy. Still sticking to that 140-character formula, though. Who needs over 250 [named] characters, besides Marcel Proust? Don’t answer that.
P.P.S. Also, I do the Book of Face: https://www.facebook.com/love.vivacia.k.ahwen/