Category Archives: Visual Delights

Toward a Theory of Poetic Investigation

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Oil on canvas 48×48″
2014 Peter Illig

 

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Body as Canvas

“His tongue is a paintbrush

      And I am the canvas

On which

      He fervently works

            To create a masterpiece.”

 

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© 2014 Enchanted Zaftig Poetry

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“My Eyes Are Up Here”

Prolific artist Peter Illig recently completed this painting of me. The perspective he chose is compelling and leads one’s eyes down the canvas – as the title so aptly implies. With brilliant brush strokes and a colorful flare, I think he accurately captured the true essence of who I am: a smart, hip, voluptuous, sexy geek. N’est-ce pas?

48 x 30 oil on canvas

© 2014 Peter Illig

"My Eyes Are Up Here" ~ Peter Illig

“My Eyes Are Up Here” ~ Peter Illig

To view more of Peter’s artwork, visit www.peterillig.com.

Here is an excerpt from his artist statement:

“Centuries ago, the task of the artist was to portray and interpret the “real world.”  Now, it is to discern if there is a reality behind the appearance of things. Reality is created by observation. This search through the stuff of the world, matter and flesh, is inherently erotic. The act of drawing and painting may also be seen as erotic. By immersing ourselves in the physical and material world, we may see the path to a higher realm, and find the spiritual meaning behind physical objects.”

Check it out!

 

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Adam’s Napkins

Do you know what I love? 

Surprises.

Do you know what I love even more?

When the surprise comes from a friend and involves creativity with a motif that is near-and-dear to my heart!

A few days ago, I received a very special package in the mail containing precious zaftig goods from sculptor and napkin-doodler extraordinaire, Adam Schultz. As many of you are aware, I have been a great admirer of Adam’s work for years. His astute ability to capture the essence and beauty of the abundant female form, in both sculpture and ink sketches, is enlightening and crucial to the body-acceptance movement.

I am pleased and proud to promote his work. As Adam himself states, he is changing the world, “one collector at a time.” I like to think that I am changing the world, one reader at a time. Together, we are making an impact towards ending body shame and changing social prejudice. 

Some time ago, Adam began to sketch abundant female forms on cocktail and dinner napkins while dining out in various restaurants across the country. Popularity over these paper creations grew, and he now offers these one-of-a-kind sketches to the general public. Visit adamsnapkins.com to view an array of his zaftig napkin illustrations, all of which are unique, hand-drawn, autographed and looking for collectors to love and appreciate them.  

I know I will love and appreciate mine!

Viva la zaftig!

SPECIAL OFFER: Now through October 1, 2013, be automatically entered to win a beautiful bronze  sculpture from Adam with every purchase of an Adam Napkin!

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Embracing a Vision

The following is an article I authored for a women’s magazine. Unfortunately, the publication never quite got off the ground. I decided this piece needed to be shared, regardless. 

 

Have you ever viewed a painting or a sculpture, heard a poem or read a story that awakened your senses? Made you feel passionate about a subject and perhaps initiated a personal catharsis in you?

Art possesses the ability to capture awareness, stimulate thought and ignite emotion. Usually, one cannot view an artistic creation without feeling a reaction toward it, be it positive or negative, compelling or indifferent. Although some artists claim that interpretation is up to the individual, most probably desire a specific reaction; they want you to see what they see, feel what they feel, according to the passion and earnestness of their created work.

Prince Charming

With his sculptural series, “Goddess,” which showcases voluptuous, rotund women in enchanting poses, Adam Schultz hopes to inspire and influence a change in what qualifies as beautiful.

“Art is one of the most powerful ways to promote positive body image,” he states. “When people see these body types represented in a sensual way, rendered in the timeless medium of bronze, they are forced to reexamine their personal opinions of others – and of themselves.”

I first met Adam at a gallery in Evergreen, Colorado, where he was demonstrating part of his sculpting process using oil-based clay. Although we had been in correspondence prior to that evening, speaking with him in person and witnessing his work-in-process was pivotal for me. As an appreciator of the arts, I am constantly inspired by the creativity of others, and Adam’s works speak to me on a very personal level, because 1.) I have the body type he molds, and 2.) We share the same passion about changing the narrowing views on beauty.

Fibonacci’s Girl

Having sculpted a wide range of artifacts for over 25 years – including animals, portraits, memorials and monuments for both private and corporate collections – Adam decided within the last decade to begin creating the figures he loves personally but rarely sees sculpturally. “I find the sensual curves of full-figured women inherently beautiful,” he tells me, a point which is made evident by the delightfully abundant “Goddess Series.”

Adam did not begin his artistic journey as a sculptor, however. In college, he chose drawing as his major and had dreams of becoming an illustrator. It wasn’t until he learned to sculpt that he realized his true passion. For 20 years, he worked at a foundry in Northern Colorado, recreating the styles and textures of many different artists in order to cast their works in bronze. It was during this time that he became an expert in every phase of the “lost wax” process and discovered his own style. To this day, he continues to take sculpture workshops and apprentice with some of the finest figure sculptors of our time. As he says, “I never stop honing my skills.”

So why the focus on full-figured body types?

“I see people feeling ugly their whole lives,” Adam reveals. “I see them hurting and mutilating their bodies to try and emulate Barbie dolls, and I wonder why unique, lovely and curvaceous body types aren’t perceived as beautiful also.”

When his two daughters were around the ages of four or five, both complained to Adam that they needed to lose weight, which determined him even further to play a role in changing perceptions and reversing the low self-esteem crisis pervading our population, particularly in women.

Galatea on view

Although he realizes that not every person who views his sculptures will embrace his artistic intent, he remains committed to promoting positive body image. According to Adam, his biggest critics tend to be those individuals who have fallen into the “thin is in” rhetoric and who find the celebration of rotund bodies distasteful. Adam treats these negative moments as opportunities to educate and introduce a different opinion, as well as to perhaps change a misguided perception.

For the most part, the response to Adam’s “Goddess Series” has been overwhelmingly positive. And that is most pivotal.

“I’ve had women burst into tears after viewing my work,” he shares, “and thank me for helping them to see themselves – sometimes for the first time – as beautiful.”

Art can perform an integral role in drawing attention to a subject and affecting change. Although Adam Schultz realizes that not every person who views his sculptures will embrace his vision, he remains committed to promoting positive body image and making a difference through his abundant sculptural forms.

To view more of Adam’s work, visit www.adamsculpture.com

©2012 Enchanted Zaftig

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The Woman In The Dark

Sitting in the Dark With Red Hair ~ by Juan Alcantara

Sitting in the dark, in silence and solitude, tranquility and discernment,

A woman faces her fears,

Her bare flesh resplendent, encouraging her on,

Diminishing her shame and self-loathing.

She needs no mirror, no reflection, to assuage her hesitations

For the vivid truth speaks to her in a language she’s only just now begun to understand.

“I am wonderfully created.

Each and every fold and curve,

          hill and valley,

             rise and fall of my ample flesh

                gives proof to my unique existence.

My beauty shines from within and without and resonates to the world.

I am electric and noticeable, invaluable and admirable, worthy and unashamed.

I am me.

And I am content.”

The woman in the dark has a conversation with herself that alleviates even her most powerful doubts.

It cleanses and awakens her, offers a life-changing, uncharted path  of revelation and acceptance, love and respect, hope and fortitude.

“I am me,” she sings harmoniously to herself.

“And I am content…”

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Sketched

Stripped naked, I lounge on a blanket draped across my black leather couch. I’m languid, exposed, acutely aware of the artist’s gaze as he determines how best to present my flesh on paper.

Every now and then, a shiver runs through me from the cold.

Striving to remain statuesque and still, I watch  from the corner of my eye as his hand whips charcoal across the page; one moment fluid, the next moment sharp.  Determined.

His fingers smooth out the lines.

Diligently, he works to bring my hips and breasts and rotund belly to life. No intention of glossing me over; he depicts me just as I am ~ hefty, curvaceous, plump.

His honesty reverberates across the page. And I am beautifully transformed from flesh to sketch.

~ Enchanted Zaftig

Nathanael A. Lee  ©2012

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