My Artist Statement Decoded

I_Wish_I_Had_Tiny_WingsI am honored to have a show at the University of Portland this Fall and I wanted to make a thoughtful artist statement for the beautiful post card they will send out to at least 500 people, people who think, a lot. That’s what you do in college right? I tried it but beer was much more fun. 🙂

After a whole bunch of hilarious revisions, I have finally come up with something that I may be able to use, but it’s not funny anymore. So, here, on the blog, I will decode it so it not only makes more sense, but also captures the true essence of what I was trying to say.

I will translate each paragraph into one sentence for your pleasure. Enjoy!

Gia Whitlock Artist Statement

Painting, for me, is like putting together a puzzle with no edges and no image on the box. As I glue bits of decorative paper to the surface, I outline and enhance them with bright colors of acrylic paint, sometimes losing the collage altogether. Whether or not the paper remains visible, the texture helps to shape the next layers of paint and paper. I have come to crave these textures in my finished pieces.

Translation: I have NO IDEA what I am doing, or why I am doing it, most of the time. 

What begins as a random collection of unmixed colors, shapes, textures, and patterns, ultimately becomes a unified whole that combines imagination and reality. Representational forms that are blended with nonrepresentational forms make up the entirety of these mosaic-like paintings. Outlines around the shapes single the pieces out while simultaneously connecting them to each other.

Translation: I struggle to make sense of the stuff I paint so I draw lines around it and use large words to justify myself. 

What often arises from this intuitive process is a variety of natural and spiritual themes. Some of the pieces are abstract scenes, reminiscent of the forest and the mystical creatures that may or may not live there. Other pieces focus on animal forms made of fruits and other organic shapes. A search through the intense blocks of color, balanced by neutral areas, may yield a solitary inhabitant of nature, or a dream world composed of fictional characters amidst elements of the earthly landscape.

Translation: When you look at these paintings, you may say to yourself, “There’s an apple over here, a bird that swallowed a whole bunch of stuff next to a little person with wings over there, and what the hell is that shape in the middle? “

Thanks for reading all the way to the end. I hope this helps you better understand the enigma that is an artist statement. 🙂



MAN I am bad at this!!


I know, I know, I say this EVERY single time I write a blog because it’s USUALLY two years in between spurts of blogging. Please forgive me, I get caught up in painting and playing guitar and reading trash on the Internet so it’s a busy life.

I am so caught up in the MOST RECENT school shooting that I have made a little art project I’d like to share.  I do not want this to keep happening. I have many gun owners in my family who would never hurt anyone,  and I love them all very much. I know they are not the problem, I know that the mere existence of guns is not the problem.

But this is not about me and my extended family. It’s about my children. I do not want them to grow up in a world like this if they don’t have to. I do not want to lose my kids to a mass shooting, like so many parents have had to do in recent years.

So, I came here today to introduce you to some “Liberal Propaganda” I just made. And I’ve organized it into a printable template for you to use if you’d like to send a friendly note to some senators out there who MAY (or may not) be listening. I feel like this picture will get their attention.  You can get their contact info here. 

Please feel free to download and use the templates for your canvasing pleasure. And have a wonderful day!




Coffee Drawings – More Dishes

I really love these dishes I’m seeing on Pinterest and had a great time drawing them at First Cup Coffeehouse this week. Here is the latest. Also, I’ve just opened my Etsy Shop for the fourth time in eight years! Now, my nicest Coffee Drawings are for sale! Check it out. 


Work in Progress – My Big Idea


Stage 1: Collage of papers.`


Stage 2: Adding some paint to the shapes.

In my many, MANY attempts at a vineyard -inspired painting for “Lushes with Brushes,” I decided to start over. Here is what I call, “Stage 2.” At least, I call it that today. It could become stage 3 or 4. Working out my painting process when I don’t really know my painting process is not so easy. But the fun of painting on the Monaco Family Vineyard with six people this Fall will be worth it.



Coffee Drawings: Big Ideas

IMG_4587IMG_4592vineyardpieces (9 of 18)

So, these coffee drawings are my leaning toward a magical Adult Art Camp experience at a gorgeous vineyard in Eastern Washington. The plans are in the very beginning stages and Daylight Savings Time is messing me up really good. Thus, I will write about that more later. Anyway, here are a few pictures. The top is my coffee drawings from the vineyard on my wall of inspiration, the middle, is my painting, in progress, based on these images, and the bottom images, is the vineyard itself.

I wish I had written this better, but there is always tomorrow. 🙂




Coffee Drawings: Drawing (more) Coffee


At least, it’s a sweet little pink coffee cup from my Facebook friend with a collection of cute coffee cups. I drew this cup three times today at First Cup Coffeehouse in Portland, and I must say, I am ok posting this last version here, however, I am going to get more practice. I drink so much coffee, I should become an expert at drawing the cups, right?




Coffee Drawings: Drawing Coffee

Well, thanks to a Facebook friend, I ended up drawing today, even though I said I wasn’t going to. So, thanks Facebook Friend for posting your beautiful coffee cup this morning. 🙂



Coffee Drawings: Vessels

So, today, I spent a while at Pappacino’s  in the Woodstock neighborhood of SE Portland, drawing these vintage vessels from Pinterest. Yes, I am getting a lot of my inspiration from that addictive, gorgeous site lately. 🙂  Here they are, vases and bowls….




Coffee Drawings: Guess What!?

More Dishes!!! I was messing around on Pinterest (again) and found many, many gorgeous arrangements of dishes for my drawing pleasure. And I hope seeing them brings you a little pleasure as well.



Shrinky Dink Art Drives Me CRAZY!

But it was worth it! After about 10 completely failed attempts, I finally got the hang of cooking this plastic menace! And figured out enough to do a little art project with colored pencils and sharpies. It’s not quite like I saw on Pinterest, but I am happy enough now to turn off the oven and forget the whole thing. For now…hahahaha.

Also, please apologize to your loved ones, because I know you will be sucked into Pinterest after reading this. 🙂



The finished Shrunken Product


As they each come out of the oven, shrunk!


Four slices of discontent


The entire 8.5×11 drawing, ready to be sliced