Author Archives: Diane Russell

(Past Event) Mittleman Jewish Community Center

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JANUARY 12–16 2015

Artvlog

 

MITTELMAN JEWISH COMMUNITY CENTER
6651 SW Capitol Highway, Portland OR

My portraits of jazz musicians will be on display in the MJCC lobby during the week of January 12-16, in conjunction with George Fendel’s Jews in Jazz workshop and concert on Thursday January 15. The free concert, offered at 1:20 and repeating at 7pm, will feature music from famous Jewish jazz musicians presented by George Fendel, a local jazz pianist and radio DJ. I will be working on a new pencil portrait in the lobby during George’s presentations.

Linda Hornbuckle

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The first musician portrait I painted was in 1998, and my subject was Linda Hornbuckle.  For the painting (which appeared on her CD “Clearly”) I photographed her at Music Millenium, and later in her living room as she sang.  Sadly, Linda passed away last week, after a two year battle with cancer.  I will always remember this beautiful woman and her beautiful voice.  The community will always remember her as the great soul diva of the Northwest. Tonight, I am donating a large print of the painting at “More Love for Linda”, an all-star benefit to help with her medical costs.

To attend, or donate, visit http://www.crystalballroompdx.com/events/130472-More-Love-for-Linda—A-Community-Benefit-for-Linda-Hornbuckle-featuring.  A video tribute featuring Linda singing Amazing Grace, accompanied by the late Janice Scroggins…  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NwZoQkdNea0

American Music Project

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This is the fourth year I have been creating original drawings for Thara Memory’s American Music Project’s Benefit Concerts. This one of Bennie Maupin, along with my drawing of Terrell Stafford, auctioned for $2000! I am so pleased to be able to contribute to programs like this that bring essential arts training to our students!

Norman Leyden

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Norman w-drawing2014Norman Leyden was a nationally known conductor, composer, clarinetist, and educator. He was best known as the conductor of the Oregon Symphony Pops orchestra, however he also worked with Glenn Miller during his years in the US Air Force. More recently, Mr. Leyden performed at the Hollywood Bowl with Pink Martini. I photographed Norman during his induction into the Oregon Music Hall of Fame in 2008, and used one of the photos for my pencil drawing of him. It was recently on display at the “Tribute to Norman Leyden” concert at the Arlene Schnitzer Hall in Portland. I was very fortunate to have met Norman just weeks before, and he seemed so pleased with the copy of the pencil drawing that I gave him. Norman Leyden passed away July 23, 2014.

 

RACC Professional Development Grant

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This is the second grant that I have received from the Regional Arts and Culture Council, and thanks to this opportunity, I was able to attend this year’s Annual Portrait Society of America’s Conference held in Washington DC.  I observed painting demos featuring the top portrait artists in the country, and received portfolio critiques from the same portrait artists. One thing that was emphasized was the importance of drawing from life, which I have been neglecting for much too long. Since returning from the convention, I have been inspired to sketch from life on a regular basis, and now I see why it is so important in my progression as an artist. This 30-minute sketch was done while my daughter was in town for her birthday this month.

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Oregon Art Beat

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During the past few months, the film crews at Oregon Art Beat have been filming in my studio, and on location, for my segment on Oregon Art Beat! The segment is finally airing tonight, but you can also watch it online any time here . Thanks to Robe Imbriano, Greg Bond, and William Ward for doing such a great job!

Legendary Rhtyhm & Blues Cruise #21

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Drum-webEarlier this year, I was commissioned to create the poster for the October 2013 Legendary Blues Cruise, and I have
just returned from this seven-day blues festival at sea!   This is my second poster for the Blues Cruise (the 2007
poster can be seen (here). This time, I was on board the Ms. Maasdam as the commemorative artist, sailing out of Fort Lauderdale with stops in Key West, New Orleans, and Progreso Mexico. The performers included Irma Thomas,
Los Lobos, Marcia Ball, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Tommy Castro, Guy Davis, Lucky Peterson, Ruthie Foster, and many others including special guest Johnny Winter! Thanks again to Roger Naber and the Legendary crew for making this an amazing experience! Since pictures are worth a thousand words, I have put together a photo album to share.  Check out my photos at this link 

American Music Program Benefit Concert

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I have been creating original pencil drawings for Thara Memory’s American Music Program benefit concerts for three years, and this year was no exception. “Nothin’ But the Blues”, featuring Esperanza Spalding, took place at the Gerding Theater on August 18.  I am so pleased that my original pencil drawing of Esperanza and Thara helped to raise $10,000 for the program!

Pinetop Perkins Headstone

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Pinetop-Headstone-smallIt is an incredible honor to have my pencil drawing of Pinetop’s hands featured on his new headstone at his gravesite in McLaurin Cemetery, near Clarksdale, Mississippi. Born on July 7, 1913, Pinetop Perkins played with Muddy Waters for twelve years, and was one of the last great Mississippi Delta Bluesmen still performing when he passed away on March 21, 2011 at the age of 97. Many attribute his long life to his love of McDonalds, cigarettes, his music, and, of course, the ladies. He received three Grammy awards, the latest just a month before he died. My original pencil art of Pinetop’s Hands at the Piano was created using my photo of him just a year earlier as reference. The image also appears on special edition T-Shirts, with proceeds going to the Pinetop Perkins Foundation. (http://www.pinetopperkinsfoundation.org/ppfstore.html)