Tag Archives: roxanne baldwin

Some Information about Me….

I don’t go into my past that much, I pretty much believe in making the best of things and moving on.  I realize, though, not giving you the perspective of my early life, may make the philosophy behind my work seem naive, maybe even Pollyanna-ish.  Also, maybe others hearing about the struggles I have gone through, who may be going through something similar, will be able to take away from my experiences to find hope and maybe strength.

So, here goes.  In my Junior year of high school, I was a very happy, good student.  My art portfolio was strong.  It looked as if my life was set: Art college, and then a career as a  professional artist.

I have made no secret about the fact that I am bipolar.  However, the timing of my first (and probably worst) psychotic episode, was a problem. Added to it, was the anxiety every teenager goes through.  It came up in my senior year of high school, while you are finishing your school work and applying to college.

Let me say a little bit about what is meant by mixed moods.  Strange though it seems, a bipolar can go through periods of experiencing both depression and mania, at the same time.  This is what was happening to me.  As it played out, I was seeing symbolism and meaning in random, ordinary things in life.  I was also severely depressed.

Against this, I was supposed to do an final essay for my English class on the symbolism of a certain book.  I had no filter for judging symbolism at this time, I was seeing symbolism in such minutia of my life.  So, I could not finish the essay (or the class) in time for my graduation in June. I know, but I was really, really crazy.

I applied to three art colleges.  The Rhode Island School of Design was considered the finest art school at the time.  There were assignments to do for the application I sent.  Two drawings, one of old shoes and one of a bicycle, which I completed and felt I had done a good job.  Another was drawing of my choice.  Remember, at this point, I had very little judgement.  I could not decide on the subject to draw.  Also, I was to write a biography.  Again, the lack of filter made me unable to choose what to write about my short seventeen years, in only a page.  So, I did not complete the application.

I applied at the Cooper Union in NYC.  I was well received, and got an acceptance (if I recall correctly) on the condition that I complete the English class in time for graduation.

I applied to Carnegie-Mellon.  There, I received a flat out rejection.

Many years later, I went back to my high school for transcripts.  I was told, that despite the fact that I had been rejected by Carnegie-Mellon in their correspondence to me, that my high school was send a conditional acceptance, dependent on me completing English by the September start date of classes.  This was something I had managed to do, and I found out about the letter to my high school many years later.

So be it. It is what it is.

Would my life have been better if I had gone through a smooth path to art college?  Maybe, maybe not.  I was never able to find the time or money to go back and try again.  I did get art education bits at a time, although I missed the technical expertise that a full immersion would have given me.

I do think, however, that I am a person first and an artist second.  The years of “keeping on trucking” taught me about the complexities and richness of life and other people that I might have missed otherwise.  I feel those years also affected my artwork in a positive way.  Maybe I am not the most technically able artist, but I like my style and subject matter.

So, that is my story.  I am happy with my art and myself, now, so this story has a happy ending.  Peace.

Here’s a piece of my art from my happier time in high school.


Oh, the AGONY…..

“Winged Foal” is coming along agonizingly slow.  It could be because I picked up a heavy, cast iron pan with my right hand alone.  Managed to do something to my wrist and hand.   They’re sort of numb, now, making it hard to grasp a pencil. 

So, enough complaining.

Here’s another abstract from my long lost past.  The idea of this was to base it on a letter-like hieroglyph, something like what Prince used, when he was “The Artist Formerly Known as Prince”.

Here ’tis.


Connecticut Fantasy Finish

As I was going to work yesterday, our landlord came bursting out the back door. He wanted to show us that there were berries falling all over our car, and to be careful. Then he pointed out a tree I hadn’t noticed before. A mulberry.
Mulberries are found in Connecticut. There were two in my childhood yard. Like magnets, they attracted birds and squirrels looking for a good meal. I wouldn’t be surprised, if at night, they were scavenged by raccoons, too. That is, when the raccoons were finished knocking over the garbage cans.
So, on the left side of the drawing, I included a mulberry tree. It gave me a chance to put in some red and pink colored dots to break up the green. I softened the tree on the right, put in some finishing touches, and Voila! Connecticut Fantasy is finished.


All the best intentions….

Evidently, the charity that I send my drawings to had a problem with its venue…so my work will be sent back. Maybe they’ll find someplace else in the future.
But in the meantime, more about “Connecticut Landscape Fantasy”. Sometimes, I like to do a composition based on real places, but in a free-flowing mode, using typical elements of that place. In the past I did one of the Oregon Coast, which has since been lost. Here’s an example I do have, it’s called “Merritt Parkway Fantasy”, which I did many years ago. For those of you not in the area, it is a main highway in Connecticut. Sorry, picture a little fuzzy.merritpkwy

Looking for a venue

Just to let  you know, despite my silence, I have been working on the large version of “Pocket Paradise”.   I’m taking it slow, more like a mediation than hurrying through it.  Also, like I felt with “Freedom Tower in Spring”, I don’t want to give away the ending before it’s finished.

I’m also posting because I am looking for a venue to show my artwork.  I’m looking for a place that is willing to show my work for free, or a commission or barter.  Unfortunately, I have no money to pay upfront for a space.  So if anyone knows of a coffee shop, restaurant, salon or such, please let me know.  I’d rather not do bars, too much a risk of damage to my work.

Upcoming Art Show

Just to let you know, my work will be in the Greenpoint Gallery’s portrait show.  I am exhibiting “Embracing My Inner Cat” and “Disco”.

Here’s a little bit about the gallery and show.


It’s a one night show.  It starts at 8:00 pm and goes into the wee hours.  I’ll check in for a while, but doubt I’ll be around for the whole thing.  At midnight, they do a people’s choice award, but I don’t really expect to win.  My work is not the “Knock ‘Em Dead”, kind of work that usually wins.  Subtlety doesn’t work well with crowds, wine, live music, etc.   Hopefully, there will just be  people who enjoy my work there, and possibly a sale.ImageImage



Next Work in Progress, Freedom Tower in Spring, and an artist’s frustrations

Just to let those of you know who might be interested,  the 5×7 sketch of “Freedom Tower”, is now on Ebay:http://www.ebay.com/itm/140966258541?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1555.l2649

I have continued on with the larger version.  Here’s where it is now.


I’m having fun with this.  There was a time when art wasn’t fun for me.

I probably did my best work in the 1980’s, but, boy, did I sweat bullets doing it.  You see, after all my success in high school, I felt sure the art world would welcome  me with open arms, only to find thousands of competitors with the same idea.  My first experience sending out slides was a failure.  So, I decided to try harder.

I sharpened my drawing skills, thanks to the book, “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain”, a book I wholeheartedly recommend.  Then I decided I would do work that was IMPORTANT.  It was very detailed, and if the least thing went wrong, I would discard it.  Many times I would repeat the same work five or more times.

So the time came to send those slides out, this time to juried shows.  Again failure, except for one acceptance.  Each time I sent in an entry, too, it cost money.  The fees started piling up.

I got discouraged, and eventually the work I was doing suffered.  So, in a fit of rage at the art world, I decided to quit art altogether.

Come some years later, I decided to play with acrylics.  I decided to concentrate on the process, instead of the subject.  The result was the Namaste series.  I still don’t know how I feel about the results of that.  Here’s an example.


Finally, once again I got involved in colored pencils.  Subject matter once again appealed to me.   So here I am.