Sympathetic Strings(2017) [A Beautiful Decay Series]
Acrylic & Oil on Wood 36’’ ⭕️ Diameter
Sympathetic Strings(2017) [A Beautiful Decay Series]
Acrylic & Oil on Wood 36’’ ⭕️ Diameter
In the studio finishing up this piece while vibing to @toroymoi’s new album.
Excited this week to be prepping for a show in Santa Monica August 19, 20. @Uniquecraftfair #uniquela. I'll have new and limited release pieces available to those on the email list & visiting the show. Come by and take a closer look and feel of the jewelry along with some new work in person.
“Quiver” Acrylic & Porcelain on wood. 17×24″, 2017. #figurativeart
Experimenting with a new tool to finish up the painting portion of this portrait. I think I’ll call her Wonderment. She’ll be the first in a series of pieces under A Beautiful Decay. I’ll be finishing her off with sculpted porcelain, so stay tuned ✨📺✨ #^+^
Fussing with her lashes on a new work in progress.
Just read an amazing article that mentioned how color can affect your productivity by Talor Casti @thecoppergirl on @mashable. Even if you may have a favorite color, the effect of being around certain colors are universal. I’m putting together an experiment to try this week with my peeps on my email list. Come try it with us. It’s easy and fun. Sign up for the email list at leahsmithson.com (the link is in the profile)
Posted a quick sketch of this awhile ago. Finally able to put some paint down.
EXCERPT FROM A WORK IN PROGRESS
Happily putting the finishing touches on this piece…I’ll be sure to post a pic of the full painting when its done;)
Here’s a short video of the Wearable Art Kickstarter Launch Party from Saturday night. We had such a great time. Thanks everyone for coming out to the show and all of your support. Resist + Remember. leahsmithson.com https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/303106924/wearable-art-that-restores-knowledge-of-a-forgotte
Enjoy this quick fashion debut with Amy Carabba on Good Day Sacramento.
Also please feel free to contribute to the Kickstarter at https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/303106924/wearable-art-that-restores-knowledge-of-a-forgotte
This is Day 14 before the Launch.
Here’s the official Video now on Youtube. This should make it easier to see from smart phone devices also.
I look forward to hearing your feedback. Resist and Remember.
I’ve been working with the 4bearance in getting out more scarves that have been painted with the dye from the Flower that Feeds. We’ve recently noticed that when coupled with Sun Eaters collected from Chûndra’s bioengineered bird that we captured, The flowers anti-vapor effect is much, much stronger. In fact, after being charged with light, you can see their power radiate when dark.
Here are a few pictures of these relics on some of our members of the 4bearance. We will have more information about their availability to everyone very soon. In the meantime don’t forget.
Resist + Remember
During the Ishan Project we discussed The Elements which combated Chûndra’s influence over mankind. Two of which are The Scarves (which fragrance clarified the minds of the wearer as well as those in the vicinity) and The 4th Element (You The Observer).
Now we find ourselves at a unique point in our story. Soon I’ll be bringing the project live to the streets of San Francisco in the form of an Art Show. But first I’d love to hear your opinion. I’ve been playing with the idea of creating a series of scarves which will have one of the daily paintings of this series blended and painted on it’s surface. Which of the three would you vote to see featured? Saturday, April 26, of next week, I will be randomly selecting the name of one of the commenters to send a free print of the winning piece. All who’ve also shared or tweeted this post will also be given two opportunities instead of one. The winner will also be mentioned on my blog at www.leahsmithson.com/blog.html. I’m really looking forward to hearing from you and I invite you to sign up for my newsletter at: http://www.leahsmithson.com/ishan-project.html. Resist and Remember.
Some people have been asking what I’ve been doing since the last Ishan post. Just to let you know, I’ve been busily working on putting together a show and some exciting projects I’ll be letting you know about soon. In the meantime, thank you for all of the inquiries and support. Resist & Remember.
•Ishan Project: 352/13•
The Third Element was composed from Chaen’s Heart. The soft petals mixed wonderfully with the gouache paint but was also able to create a stimulating ripple in Chûndra’s plans throughout the year. But once they combined with the three other core elements it would cause a catalyst which would stimulate the masses.
Although these positive effects happened, Netra couldn’t help but turn her back away from them. The water began to drip down her face and stained the scarf strapped around her torso. Memories from several years began flooding her memory. She struggled to control her emotions now realizing how close they’d become to the catalyst which would rip apart the Vapor’s influence.
GO / Mixed Media / 5″ x 4″
•Ishan Project: 294/71•
(Con’t from Day 293) The factors that cause aging are still much of a mystery to science. The Ishan’s genetic code is not much different than human. Something in the Ishan’s genetic code tells it to continue with it’s normal adult function longer than the average human. Therefore, they tend to live longer. Human’s have that capacity as well. We just can’t tap into it yet.
Anali continues, “There is a cave that goes deep in the earth. There, a tree grows in a dark cave, which is pretty remarkable because it’s able to grow in the dark. It’s sap has many healing properties for the Ishan. To humans though, it tends to have a fatal nature.
“Chûndra, very depressed, got lost one day. It actually was right before she ended our friendship. She found the tree and brought the sap back home. I think she knew what the sap was and the detrimental affect it would have on her. However, she took some anyway. When we found her, she was very sick to the point of death. In fact, her heart stopped for three minutes. We used our electromagnetic powers to stimulate it to start beating again. She lived, and continues living. And I have an idea her new place is by the old eucalyptus where her mother was buried.”
In addition to locating the eucalyptus where Chûndra’s mother was buried, the impostors pictured here also became an important factor in finding her location. They had been feeding the entire day when Preet stumbled upon them.
IMPOSTOR / Mixed Media / 8″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 283/82•
Dwindling lights fade into the shadows. Etched into their minds like carvings from ice sculptures, our young lady finds herself entranced by the slow rhythm created by the beating of raindrops heard outside. In this one moment, she wouldn’t allow the distractions to overtake her. She gathered her bearings as she feels a confusion brewing in her heart. But the vapor wouldn’t overtake her like the others. She stayed focused—focused on a rhythm captured by her eardrum which anchored the inspiration she held so sacredly.
DWINDLING LIGHTS / Mixed Media / 5″ x 8″
•Ishan Project: 279/86•
A GAUZE FOR BLINDING
Once the haze spread rampant, a fractal pattern of the mind was disturbed. Years ago, a distinct spiral pattern of 137.5° was given the name: A Golden angle. This angle forms a compact arrangement that is extremely efficient in distribution of matter creating what people commonly refer to as a Fibonacci sequence. This sequence can be seen in a snowflake, a pattern of a shellfish, or in the circular shapes created from the petals of a flower.
This young lady was one of the first observed by Jeth who took on peculiar changes. She had been dancing by herself one night to a tune created by the rain outside when suddenly, like a gauze, a purple film began blinding her vision. It circled itself around her eyes first destroying the flowers waking effects. It then formed a vice grip around her neck, suffocating then reconditioning her to this new vapor.
Jeth had been watching in horror as her movements once again became robotic.
A GAUZE FOR BLINDING / Mixed Media / 5″ x 8″
•Ishan Project: 269/96•
We end our day near the Embacaderro. We were curious to find out how the clarifying fragrance from the flowers that feed had affected those walking along the Wharf. There was a similar buzzing noise here as had been in the small town where Chûndra tested her vapor. This buzzing had stopped a few days ago, but something was too still. We all have a sinking feeling in our stomach that something terrible is on the horizon. In fact, Aram’s flowers’ glow bright red as she begins to sense the danger piercing violently through the air, but as far as we can tell, there is nothing there. We can’t waste time on paranoia. Right now we have to do as much as we can while we can. Something about this feeling is similar to an experience I had when I was eight years old.
INKLING / Mixed Media / 5.5″ x 4″
•Ishan Project: 260/105•
There was no longer any use for her. Chûndra felt she served her purpose. As this realization becomes more apparent over time, Violet becomes desperate, grasping for any residual of the vapor she could find. She finds Cherry and his minion hidden in the dense darkness. He conceds to give her a portion, but once the vapor wears off and she returns, he threatens her to leave the premises.
Now she finds herself at a standstill. She leaves the 4bearance’s lair in search of some answer to her dilemma. Preet keeps a careful eye on this young one. She follows her as she begins walking alongside a jagged cliff…and trips.
HER RISING / Mixed Media / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 257/108•
Watching the way Violet stands and walks away didn’t sit well. Violet had been slightly rocking back and forth as if she were under the influence of something. Once she leaves, Preet goes by the bay window she had been sitting at all afternoon. She notices the shape of her rear is still embedded in the leather cushions. As Preet gathers her limbs, she immediately sees the same two lights from a distance flashing back and forth.
STRANGE LIGHTS / Mixed Media / 5.5″ x 4″
•Ishan Project: 256/109•
THROUGH THE WINDOW PANE
“What was wrong with this young lady?” Preet wonders. She watches carefully as her smile falls dry and her emotions once again get the better of her. It seemed as though she’d been nervously snooping around the sanctuary also. Was she hiding from someone?
Joy had again been found in the 4bearance after being defeated so frequently recently. But instead of joining in their celebration Preet finds her focusing on something else. Others would come by her and she would smile as if everything was fine but once they left she notices Violet’s attention return outside the window.
THROUGH THE WINDOW PANE / Mixed Media / 5.5″ x 4″
•Ishan Project: 255/110•
A QUIET GAZE
4bear has grown more than momentum now. Many seedlings have been planted and they have been made safe. The flowers that feed penetrated the atmosphere slicing through the dense darkness created by Chûndra. Mankind ‘s memory had begun to rejuvenate itself. An air of our own has a sweet scent; untainted and unaffected by her vapor.
A QUIET GAZE / Mixed Media / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 254/111•
Aram’s flower brushes softly against it’s beak as she lets the healing properties take their effect.
For years the Bird had been held captive by Chûndra’s vapor. Yet once Aram begins to heal it’s injured heart, an extraction is made which bleeds the poison speckled across it’s ruffled feathers. Once it opens it’s eyes again, a new day has begun. Now free from her control, it’s wings begin flapping with great intensity.
POIGNANT RELEASE / Mixed Media / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 253/112•
THE DEATH OF THE SUN-EATERS
Starving, this bird hadn’t had a decent meal in a long time, thanks to 4Bear. Jess was shocked how quickly it consumed the bushel of flowers. Immediately, it senses the papillae on the flowers of her left arm had come in contact with the seed. It’s right talon then slices into her dominate flower. She looks into his eyes at that moment, and sees something that resembles sorrow in them. The pain of his hunger was involuntary. It was bioengineered to be this way. It had to consume at this accelerated rate in order to squelch it. As he begins to nibble on her flowers, the Bird senses her gaze. A connection is started between them as the erythromycin begins to destroy the sun eaters that cover his feathers.
Meanwhile, Rïden and Koyu are building up an electromagnetic charge that starts sizzling through the air. Just as Jess breaks her gaze with the bird to tell Koyu to change plans, the electric charge stikes the bird. He cries out in agony. He struggles to flap his massive wings to try to get away but then abruptly slumps, falling to the ground. Although injured from the commotion, she bends over his body and lays her right hand on its beak. Her heart sinks as she listens to its heart beat slowly then stop.
THE DEATH OF THE SUN-EATERS/ Mixed Media / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 252/113•
The bait worked of course. It finished it’s first meal. But it was still hungry. They listen to it sniff the air then track it’s claws across the floor in search of another flower.
Jess is aware it could strike at any moment now. Yet as she backs away, she knows that this was her battle. She’d need to settle the score.
BAIT / Gouache, Chalk, Graphite, Color Pencil / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 251/114•
They’ve planted enough seedlings to give the Bird a snack without making it completely full. He breaks out of his stealth feverishly and sniffs the air. His insatiable hunger throbs the pit of his intestines to the point he treads through their lair uncontrolled. Meanwhile, the sun eaters remain intact around his talons leaving him undetected.
The Guardian could only hear his claws tap the floor searching desperately for its meal. She watches anxiously as it snatches the first seedling. It disappears instantaneously. “The first phase of this plan is going well,” she thinks to herself. They would need to be extremely careful not to set things off.
BIRD CATCHER / Gouache, Chalk, Graphite, Color Pencil / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 245/120•
THE SMELL OF LOYALTY
Under her scrutiny she watches the Chemist as she mixes a new batch of her vapor. The ingredient was a new one laced with a hint of lavender. She then test it’s affects on her drones.
Initially, they seemed unaffected. Then slowly, one by one they begin clutching their sides while howling in agony. She hadn’t expected it to be this potent. She stares at them as they experience this pain. She almost feels something similar to sympathy for them. “But their sacrifice is only necessary,” she reasons to herself. She can’t afford to have another tragedy. She was so close to getting what she wanted and couldn’t risk them leaving.
THE SMELL OF LOYALTY / Gouache, Graphite / 5.5″ x 4″
•Ishan Project: 243/122•
She composes herself before going in to see Chûndra. Something tells her that the conversation isn’t going to go well. Chûndra doesn’t take well to losing her soldiers. If only she wasn’t so controlling, it actually would be kind of sweet, the way she likes to collect people. The mole knows that there is only one way that Chûndra consoles herself in these type of rare situations. She will most likely begin re-establishing her relationship of loyalty with her fold…chemically.
COMPOSE / Gouache / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 235/130•
PIERCING THROUGH THE DARKNESS
Drenched in sweat she leaves the palace knowing this could be her only chance. She’d have to alert the 4bearance. The seeds of doubt had been planted. Kalese’s role had also been questioned.
As Jess navigates through the darkness amidst these thick bushes, she hears a limb snap. Her focus turns high up as she senses motion. “Oh no,” she whispers. “I must’ve been followed.”
PIERCING THROUGH THE DARKNESS / Gouache, Acrylic, Graphite, Pastels / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 233/132•
A ROYAL BLUFF
(Cont. from DAY 231) She finally exhales as she rounds the corner. She had to admit, she had been concerned this plan may not have come to fruition. So the disguise worked after all! Jess had been able to trick the Head Triton over Chûndra’s imperial Guard.
It had been an extraordinary challenge smuggling the little sun-eaters into her satchel. And an even greater test manipulating them into a reflective mirror casting an image she intended.
She couldn’t help but shiver as she remembers her hands molding the little algae in a dense dark corner over her face. The blue/green bacteria began falling down her neck as it began to morph itself into an image she had projected into it’s thinking pattern. Kalese’s image would be one of several used against her. Chûndra had no idea what was in store for her.
A ROYAL BLUFF / Gouache, Acrylic, Graphite, Pastels / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 232/133•
A LONG HEAR
Brine remembered that year all to well. It was a harsh winter in 1952. The cyanobacteria had spread itself aggressively across a field of salt he had harvested. It took various attempts to stamp out this annoying substance. All the while, his precious salt had been slowly engulfed by in blue/green algae.
He had overheard then from another harvester that a new chemical had been found which could counteract its harmful affects. It’s name: erythromycin.
This cyanobacterium are the same little sun eaters that Chûndra biochemically changed and used to render one of her massive birds invisible. As Brine shares this information with the 4bearance, Chûndra’s mole listens intently to their plans. She couldn’t help but cunningly smile to herself. They stood no chance against Chûndra’s nano-tech.
A LONG HEAR / Gouache, Acrylic, Graphite, Chalk / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 227/138•
LET THEM EAT HATE
A frontal attack wouldn’t be as effective. She wants them to fall to pieces. Chûndra devises a plan to cause friction amongst the 4bearance. Something covert to let them eat hate. That way they’re too distracted to be concerned with the next phase of her plan.
LET THEM EAT HATE/ Gouache, Acrylic, Color Pencil / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 226/139•
A TEMPERATE GRIND
In order to speed up the effects of the vapor, Chûndra has The Specialist analyze it’s basic ingredients. She studies its nano-tech carefully and precisely. This formula would have to be more powerful than its predecessor. The 4bearance have tried another tactic unlike anything they’ve ever thought of. Chûndra can’t help but grind her teeth. The veins in her iris turn bright red as she considers what the future might bring. She had worked too hard to get to this point. She paces the floor in deep thought. All the while viewing this specialist studying her microscopic robots. She begins to wonder if she should reconsider The Forecaster’s initial offer.
A TEMPERATE GRIND / Gouache, Acrylic, Color Pencil / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 222/143•
This spreading has allowed each seed to grow independently. As each start to take root, the stamen wrapped in each flower begins to bud out from the petals that house it.
The Sower inspects their foundation and realizes her plans have had a measure of success. Now that they’ve taken root, it would be necessary to ensure the seeds survival.
Meanwhile, the Forecaster sniffs the air searching for any signs of a pulse. His gut tells him he should head westbound.
FLOURISH / Gouache, Acrylic, Color Pencil / 5.5″ x 8.5″
•Ishan Project: 214/151•
SOMETHING ABOUT THE SUNSHINE
Rumor has it that before all of the seeds were destroyed someone has been able to harvest the seedlings. How they’ve been able to protect them from this monster we don’t know yet but we’ll find out soon.
SOMETHING ABOUT THE SUNSHINE / Gouache, Graphite, Acrylic, Color Pencil / 3.5″ x 5.5″
•Ishan Project: 202/163•
A DESOLATE MIND
She sit’s up high in a balcony in a two story chalet on a hill that overlooks the city of interest. Her interest. It’s already started. Chûndra has made sure her Sufna formula has penetrated every inch of town during the past three months. Slowly lulling the residents into an enjoyable stupor. At least she enjoys it. They most likely don’t even realize what’s happening.
It’s working out nicely. She knows this before the day she introduced herself to the woman pictured in this painting. A woman she had been watching, as she was one of the few that had been fighting the formula for some time. Resisting the effects on her mind. Today though, Chûndra suggests, after a short introduction, not to use the car when she picks up her children from school. Instead, why not walk? Or even better, go to the school whilst hopping on one leg. Funny. She did. No one reacted particularly surprised in the town. Chûndra considers going down to meet her again to tell her to stop. Aahhh, maybe tomorrow.
A DESOLATE MIND / Gouache, Color Pencil Chalk / 3.5″ x 5.5″
•Ishan Project: 198/167•
Chûndra hears that the 4bearance has discovered a cure for her chemical vapor. They’ve also found a way to persevere despite her efforts to uproot the seedlings. It’s nighttime now. She’d have other worries tomorrow. As her drones put away her crown and fix her hair for the night, her eyes stay transfixed on that crown the entire time, as a reminder. It keeps her focused on what she must do.
A CROWN TRANSFIXED / Gouache, Acrylic, Color Pencil, Graphite / 3.5″ x 5.5″
•Ishan Project: 197/168•
A HEARTS PRISM
(Cont. from DAY 190) News from 4bear shot through the right ventricle of his heart bending light, and creating a pulsation that was indescribable. He no longer could listen to its efforts. He would become a part of it’s resolving influence.
A HEARTS PRISM / Gouache, Acrylic, Color Pencil, Graphite / 3.5″ x 5.5″
•Ishan Project: 196/169•
The 4bearance had immediately gripped her, like a wrench tightly around her neck. She wanted to hesitate, but it was unlike anything she’d ever experienced. It’s something about it was so attractive. It’s people so unselfish.
As her eyes became opened she could feel a slow rhythm begin to pulsate in her through her body, moving her to action.
Despite Chûndra’s consistent efforts to oppress us, the 4bearance continues to gain momentum, and is now building a true foundation.
WRENCH / Gouache, Acrylic, Color Pencil, Graphite / 3.5″ x 5.5″
•Ishan Project: 193/172•
A LABOR FOR SOLACE
The pain never left her. Every time Aram closes her eyes, she can’t help but think of her brother’s sacrifice for her. But she won’t let his death be in vain. As the flowers emerge from her spine they begin stretching toward the sun. She remembers how it gives her solace knowing that a piece of him that was left is able to provide healing to so many.
A LABOR FOR SOLACE / Gouache, Color Pencil, Graphite / 3.5″ x 5.5″
•Ishan Project: 191/174•
A FIELD PLUNDERED
A Guardian is awakened by a wrestling noise in the left corner of her field. She’d spent months preparing, cultivating, nurturing the soil after the Sower planted seeds. Her heart sinks to her stomach as she runs out to inspect her field. Then, looking down, she realizes someone or something has stolen her seeds. As she searches the field for some indication as to how this happened, the only clue she could conjure up was a black feather buried under some rubble.
A FIELD PLUNDERED / Gouache, Color Pencil, Graphite / 3.5″ x 5.5″
•Ishan Project: 190/175•
(Cont. from DAY 188)
As our story unfolds,
the young man reaches his door.
Yet then a memory like a flower explodes
and he realizes he must grab ahold
Of this substance.
The Forecaster: Deep in the shadows stays docile
Fastened like dark textile.
His arrow tip drips poison wild.
But which choice would he take?
Unbeknownst to him his life was at stake.
A difficult decision to make.
These colors like vapors across his body quake.
The War Within him stem
from a cause now new.
The 4bearance had drawn him in.
But what would you do?
GRAB AHOLD / Acrylic, Gouache, Graphite / 8.5″ x 11″
•Ishan Project: 188/177•
Time: September 5, 2013
Location: San Fransisco(Telegraph Hill)
He first heard of the 4bearance from a friend who’s eyes budded so brightly his retinas became transparent. “What was this group all about and what was their agenda?” he wondered to himself. The winds in San Francisco began to pick up as he rolls up the collar from his trench coat and crosses the street.
Meanwhile, The Forecaster had been studying his tracks from on top of Coit Tower. This young man was of interest. He knew this one would lead him to his prey. He patiently stays behind the shadows waiting, listening, studying, observing. Soon… he’d even the score.
WONDER / Gouache, Graphite, Color Pencil / 3.5″ x 5.5″
•Ishan Project: 184/180•
FIRST FEW DROPS
It usually takes six weeks for her body to rejuvenate, but since one of her main branches was taken off by Chûndra while she was sleep, it took longer. Even so, it was lovely being awake again. The clouds were moving in and it was getting dark, even though it was mid-day. She takes in a deep breath. “Smells like rain,” she exhales. She smiles and reaches her branch up toward the sky to grab the first few drops.
FIRST FEW DROPS / Graphite, Color Pencil, Gouache / 3.5″ x 5.5″
•Ishan Project: 182/183•
Day 9 of 10 for the Recap of the Ishan Project’s first 6 months.
KOYU AS HE FIRST SPOTTED ANALI BY JAMES BRUCE FALLS
(Con’t From Day 181) This young girl, although small and sightly insignificant, created a catalyst among the humans. She would be a significant tool used by the 4bearance in the future. For now though, the seed had been planted.
However, this many Ishan being awakened angered Chûndra in an unbelievable way. And so a massive hunt ensued. The BFC had grown mightily in number. They began keeping close tabs on this forgotten species entrapping them on every occasion.
Anali is wakened by gentle hummingbirds. After her recovery, she seeks to find her lost love Rïden. As she searches for his location, she notices that one of the birds possibly involved in his capture communicates with his comrades by an underground frequency not so easily detected. She studies then tunes into this frequency. After a long search they were finally reunited.
KOYU AS HE FIRST SPOTTED ANALI BY JAMES BRUCE FALLS / Gouache, Graphite, Color Pencil / 10″ x 6″