I’ve had this website for over 14 years, and technology has changed a LOT in that time. After one too many ‘upgrades’ without proper maintenance, my site has become so slow, it’s almost unusable.
To get back up and running, i’m starting with a ‘clean slate’. The new site will be snappy, modern and quick to load, making it easier for you to keep in touch with the latest projects in my studio. I know you are busy, and I hate to have to ask you to do anything, so most of the changes will happen behind the scenes, just keep visiting the site like normal, and moving forward it should keep working better and better. Missing posts and art will return, and some new features too!
Comments are where I have a problem and need your help: I have lost all my previous comments, which is really tough for me, because the conversations I have with my friends is what makes sharing art on the internet so much fun. If you’d like to keep the conversation going, follow this link: www.kenswinson.com, to make sure you are on the new, improved server, then keep the comments comming.
While you at the new site, if you like getting new posts deliverd by email, be sure to sign up again. you can do it in the top right corner. This will make sure that you don’t miss any of my new artwork and posts.
Thanks for your patience during this crazy time. Hopefully once I get everything up and running, I won’t have to do another overhaul like this for at least 14 more years!
One day, we were talking about printmaking, and I told her that I thought her work would make great collagraphs.
I invited her to visit anytime, and I would show her how it works.
Once we set the date, I thought it would be fun to invite any artist to join us, so I made an ‘event’ on facebook. Here is what it said:
ARTISTS! I am inviting a few artist friends to meet up for some printmaking fun. We are going to put a pot of soup on the wood stove, and I have 2 presses. We can spend the afternoon sharing a meal, getting to know each other and making stuff.
You don’t need a printmaking background, I have plenty of printmaking stuff I am happy to share (paper, knives, ink, linoleum, plates etc) You can prepare something and bring it or make it there…this is a casual, printmaking meet up, nothing formal, no cost to participate, just making art with a press.
Space and materials are limited, we will meet at the Bluegrass Art Center, which is a rustic and beautiful location…but if there is too big a response, we might have to find a bigger space…so only say you are coming if you REALLY can make it.
It was a great time! A big THANK YOU to Mike Cowden and the Bluegrass Art Center in Old Washington, KY for letting us use his beautiful space.
I hope to do something similar again soon…maybe a paint party next time?!
PS. if this is the kind of thing you might have enjoyed, and you use facebook, you can add me as a friend, or subscribe to my posts here: www.facebook.com/kenSwinson
Without a doubt, my biggest accomplishment of 2012 was the Makensie Hay-Youngman memorial at the Brooksville, KY library. Shortly after her death, Makensie’s parents asked me to do something for her memorial. I had a strong feeling that Makensie’s family and friends should have an active part in creating the artwork.
Making art has helped me feel better during difficult times, and I felt it might help them in a small way with their grief. With my direction, over 20 people helped create the 4 large paintings. Each panel represents a different season of the year, it is loaded with tidbits from Makensie’s life. I am very proud of the finished artwork. It was inspirational to see how I could share my talent to help others.
Speaking of sharing artwork, in 2012, i did a lot of teaching…A LOT! I did quite a few workshops with adults(and children) at the Baker Hunt Art and Cultural Center In Covington. I did a lot of volunteering with different summer camps, schools and community programs. Here is a link to a video I made about one of my favorite activities:
2012 was a big year for video and animation projects. I went to school for information technology, and have really enjoyed mixing art and technology. I have been working on a few different projects, but for the close of the year, I would like to share the first project of 2012…an animation collaboration with artist/singer, Leah Frederick:
the cookbook this year, I collaborated with my neighbor, Claudia Moose. Claudia is a gourmet cook, and we have worked together to combine some of her recipes with my photographs to make “Cooking With Bourbon” 100% of the proceeds from the book sales have been given toward art programs for the youth in our community. The first edition has sold out…stay tuned, we hope to have more available soon!
the van in 2012, I started to paint my van. The idea was to add something new every time I take a trip, and it would become a moving, living work of art. It is a work in progress. My long term goal for the van is to make it an art studio on wheels. I have been taking lots of small trips, learning how to make art while ‘out in the wild’. The more I travel, the more excited I get about discovering this wonderful world. My goal for 2013 is to master life on the road, and spend a good amount of time exploring and making art.
The Tiger Lily Press Calendar
I was honored to be one of the artists chosen for the Tiger Lily Press’s 2013 calendar…i was July since that is my birth month!
thanks to the great hosts, and great collectors who let me make my living doing work I love.
So the final big event of 2012 (other than the flu) was a stroke of good fortune. The Cincinnati Enquirer wrote an article encouraging people to buy local art for the holidays. They visited Indigenous: a handcrafted gallery, and saw my latest painting. They liked it so much, it was prominantly featured on the front page of the newspaper, AND on the front of the home and style section! I ended the year with lots of business…enough to pay for a new transmission on my van! Here is the now famous painting. You can click the painting to buy a print from my website, or visit Indigenous in O’bryonville to get one in person.
Thanks again everybody for a great 2012…I’m going to keep working hard to make 2013 even bigger and better! If you want occasional updates through the year, fill out the email subscription form at the top of this page OR friend me on the facebook – http://www.facebook.com/kenSwinson
I just started a printmaking collaboration with Radha, one of my neighbors at the Pendleton Art Center. She is one of my favorite printmakers, using many traditional patterns from her home in India. Visit her website http://radartist.com to see for yourself.
These monotypes are the beginning of our collaboration.
I have used elements from my prints for the monotype…when they dry, Radha will print on top of them, we will pass the artwork back and forth until the artwork is complete.
Stay tuned, I’ll share more prints as the project develops
Art In The Garden is this Saturday. It’s a fun art show along the river in beautiful Augusta, KY. I wanted to share some art that I will have at the show that features my favorite little river town.
“Peace, Love and Folk Art” Block Print – $20 unframed – 85 framed Another one of Augusta’s Treasures – a log cabin with one of the most charming ladies you will ever meet. Many years ago, she was the first shop to ever sell my art, and has always been a great friend.
“Jacqueline’s Place” Block Print– $20 unframed-85 framed 1830’s House In Augusta, KY – One of the few historic homes that are open to the public. It’s a shop called Jacqueline’s Place. Be sure and visit while you are in town
“By The River” Block Print – $60 unframed – 180 framed One of my favorite buildings in Augusta. It’s no longer being used, but for many years, it was Augusta’s black church. I really want to make it my art studio some day.
“Riverside Drive” Block Print Tryptich – $75 unframed – 210 framed Riverside Drive in Augusta, KY offers an amazing view of the Ohio River. I carved 3 block prints, then printed them on one 20”x10” sheet of paper. It captures the feeling of a very special place.
“Augusta’s First Courthouse” watercolor – $120 This historic building was Bracken County’s first courthouse in the late 1700s. It is a private residence, and is located beside the jail, which is available for tours.
I just finished a big and important project, and am ready for another art adventure. It starts today, and here are the details.
I am going to ride my bicycle along the Ohio River from Maysville, KY until I reach Paducah. From Paducah, I plan to follow the TN/KY border across the state until I reach the Daniel Boone National Forest. I will cycle north through the forest, making a giant loop through most of the great state of Kentucky.
While on this trip, my goal is to travel slow. I plan to stop often and make a lot of art while on the trip. I have been on a few long distance bike trips, and it’s easy to get obsessed with miles-traveled-per-day and miss out on the reason for taking the trip in the first place!
I’m in Ripley, OH today, it’s been chilly. I’m going to camp somewhere between here and Georgetown, OH so I can hit Mycle’s Cycles (the only place I take my bike) tomorrow, followed by a day in Augusta, KY.
EAT Gallery features jewelry from goldsmiths from across America. All items of jewelry are one-of-a-kind and are hand fabricated in gold, platinum, silver and other precious metals. They also showcase rare and unusual gemstones and pearls from around the globe.
Yesterday, I was taking care of some business in Berea, KY. The town is centered around a progressive college where students receive a free education in exchange for making and selling crafts like pottery, woodwork, weaving and jewelry. Many graduates stay in Berea, and open shops, creating a vibrant community of artisans.
The college created a small community called the eco village. It is a series of buildings where students develop environmental and self sustaining techniques for living.
They have a system called aquaponics, where plants are grown in water with fish. The plants and fish give nutrients to each other, and produce good food to eat!
One building in the village is completely self sustaining. It produces it’s own energy, food, and water.
Another building is made from mud, straw and recycled materials. As an artist, I was inspired by the straw house. The building materials remind me of a clay sculpture.
Wouldn’t it be fun to sculpt your own house?
This is a window where you can see the interior of the wall…yes, it’s STRAW!!
Here is an interesting take on a log structure.
Every time I visit Berea, I leave inspired. The Eco village makes me want to try and bump my garden up a notch, maybe I will try and do something innovative with my spring peas.
If you haven’t already seen it, here is my Christmas Card. Stay Tuned, I am putting the finishing touches on a New Year’s video. It’s a collaboration with Leah Frederick, one of my favorite singers!
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Ken is a self-taught artist from rural Kentucky, whose work includes painting, printmaking, and pottery. 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.