Happy New Year

But that was last month.

No my friend. I’m saying Happy Lunar New Year! Happy Year of the Tiger! While I have no affiliation to any culture that celebrates (any version of) the Lunar New Year, I do value the recognition in a Lunar calendar as well as a Solar calendar. So I celebrate both. I love any holiday with fabulous decorations, charming traditions, and fun superstitions. And zodiacs are pretty cool.

The 12 zodiac animals are as follows; rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog, and pig. February 1, 2022, begins the year of the Tiger. Past Years of the Tiger are 2010, 1998, 1986 and so on. If the Tiger is your year you’re supposed to wear a bit of something red each day this year, to ward off bad luck. People born in the year of the Tiger are confident, courageous, and enthusiastic.

My family keeps our lunar new year celebration simple. We decorate the house in red, and hang a big poster of a golden dragon. (because who doesn’t love dragons) We eat a few foods that are good luck, like long noodles and anything round. We also think it’s fun to explore the meaning of our positions on the zodiac. I am a metal rooster, Phil is an earth goat, the girls are wood goats, and John is an earth dog. If you are looking for more information surrounding this holiday, I like this site. The library is also a great resource.

The painting featured above is a b-side I created from leftover paint from a pet portrait I finished at Christmas time. The portrait was of a cat named Tiger. Of course, knowing the year of the Tiger was right around the corner, I had to do what I did. (very auspicious) With each b-side painting I get to choose the subject matter. I also get to choose a style I’d like to experiment with, or technique I’d like to practice. Here the practice was on symmetry and balance. I kept the composition extremely simple. This way, if lines and points of focus didn’t line up, I’d know right away. While working on this painting I could not help but find the universal implications in the process. In creating symmetry, or balance, in a composition I couldn’t just paint the left side first and then constantly adjust the right side until it looked like the left. Even if they ended up with identical shapes, the right side would look very over-worked. If you are constantly critiquing one element more than the rest it will look exhausted. Balance can not be obtained. All aspects require constant, almost simultaneous, small adjustments until they can share a common identity. Only in this way can you unite your composition.

Now scroll back to the top and look. Do you see slight variance from right to left? Thanks for reading, viewing, and contemplating.

I will now take the time to apologize to you all and admit that I am about three blog posts behind. Shortly I will feature a post about the original painting of Tiger, as well as a chairlift painting I finished and its b-side. Please stay tuned.

Good luck in the new year!