One of my big projects last year was a series of paintings for Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. I never got a chance to see the paintings framed and in their new home. I was excited to see one of my friends share photos of the paintings on facebook. (and gave me permission to share the photos here – thanks Emily!). The paintings are oil on canvas, and bigger than you might think (3ft x 4ft each). She had to take 2 photos, because all 3 were too wide to fit in one photo. Thanks again for sharing!
Thank You, Renea, for including my work in your work! Not only do I love Renea’s style, but she is one of those, community minded, creative people who live in the Ohio River Valley Neighborhood (Ripley, Oh), and I am glad we are neighbors. If you like interior design, or Ripley, Ohio, visit her facebook page at- https://www.facebook.com/pg/Sweet-Tea-For-You-492279924266987 , and give her page a ‘like’.
Earlier this year, I was invited to exhibit some of my work at the Children’s Theater Of Cincinnati. Most of my experience with theater has been from the audience. While visiting their facility, I discovered just how many different creative disciplines work as a team to make the theater happen. Rather than just exhibit work that I have already created, I was inspired to start a new series of oil paintings which celebrate the different people ‘behind the scenes’ in theater. This weekend, they unveiled the first two paintings of the project during their spring fundraising gala. These depict the cosutme designers and the set designers.
Ken Swinson pictured with Kim Deaton and Roderick Justice of The Children’s Theater Of Cincinnati.
I’m interested in celebrating all forms of creative expression, and theater is unique because it combines so many into one work. I’m grateful to the Children’s Theater Of Cincinnati for the opportunity, and also the Maysville Players – Mike Thomas and Mark Funk, in particular…who are an encyclopedia of knowledge about theater, and have been a great resource for my research. They manage Maysville’s Theater -an AMAZING program, especially considering the size of our rural community.
I’m thrilled with how the series of paintings are developing – (coreography, music and makeup are next), but I’m even more excited how the project gave me a chance to learn about the local theater in my community. I love what they are doing, and want to encourage you all to support your local theater the next time they have a performance…not only is it entertaining, but it’s supporting a wide range of arts.
I was reading an article about Pantone’s color of the year for 2015- it’s called Marsala. my first thought was “why would they pick that boring color?”.
but then I saw some examples of it being used in interesting combinations with other colors, I thought, “I’ll give it a try in one of my paintings”
After painting the sheep, I think I have warmed up to Marsala. in fact, I have been trying to think of a background color that would compliment my tan displays–and Marsala could be the perfect solution.
I’m going to travel a lot in 2015, so I’m looking for a way to make art without having to lug a lot of equipment. I picked up some of my opaque watercolors and made these. They are on colored paper, and I really like the effect.
I depend on my car. I use it to travel and explore, it carries my paintings and art supplies along with other stuff.
It’s also my ‘home away from home’ and gives me a safe place to sleep while i’m on the road.
The van is having problems, and my mechanic says he can’t fix it.
I can’t get a new van right now, so I have been thinking of alternative ways to get to the places I need to go.
I am lucky to live in a small town that has some public transportation, but it only serves Old Washington/Maysville. Getting to my studio in Cincinnati (one hour’s drive away) is another challenge. I got a little bit depressed thinking about my situation, because I convinced myself that my world has just become very small and limited without a car.
Then I started thinking about how my life might be different without a car…and it wasn’t that bad…it’s just a different way to exist. I can still travel and have adventure. It would definitely be more healthy.
In 2007, I rode my bicycle all the way around the coast of lower Michigan. It took 2 weeks, and was an amazing trip.
In 2010, I rode my bicycle from Washington, KY to Washington, DC … another great experience.
I know it’s possible to explore and travel long distances without a motor vehicle. It isn’t the fastest or most convenient way to travel, but it will be more meaningful, because you have more time to experience the people and landscape you are traveling through.
So, I’m going to see how long I can get by without a reliable car. Artists in particular are good at ‘thinking different‘.
Since my mobility is different, I need to adjust the way I do business. Online sales will be a bigger part of my plan. If you like any of the artwork featured in this blog post, please click any of the images for details on how you can buy prints…and thanks!
It’s been awhile since I’ve drawn with charcoal, but there is something about charcoal…I think it’s the simplicity of the tools. It’s basically a burnt stick, paper, and an eraser.
I’m really happy with how this turned out…now I have to come up with a title. any ideas?
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Ken is a self-taught artist from rural Kentucky, whose work includes painting, printmaking, animation and ipad art. He considers himself to be a 'lifetime learner' and he uses art as the vehicle to explore and learn more about the world around him. Much of his work reflect his optimistic views on rural folk culture, river life and simple pleasures.
You can visit Ken every Final Friday of the month at studio 400 at the Pendleton Art Center in downtown Cincinnati. He can also be found picnicking near his home in the Historic Village of Old Washington, KY.