S_V_H The Water is Wide image Final image

•05/22/2017 • Leave a Comment

I have cross over to the other side,  by finishing The Water is Wide. This little acrylic painting consists of two canvases, aluminum and wood, and is about 38 inches in length by 17 inches.  Musically this is a simple song. I can confirm its simplicity for I practice it on the piano, violin, guitar, and saxophone.  That is what is deceiving about this music. It is so easy to play, anyone can do it, which is strangely deceiving.  Anyone playing or listening to The Water is Wide will be surprisingly rewarded by the melody.   This is a piano version by Michael Logozar:

With the lyrics,  the exceptionalism of this music is complete.  Here is a live version with Jewel, the Indigo girls and Sarah Mclachlan:

Because of the style of the music I thought a small painting, with a limited color pallet would work best. I kept my blues to two colors for the background. From the lyrics I choose white,  and a mixed brown to represent the colors of the music and the row-boat.

This  artwork has turned out to be a nice surprise, that reconfirmed that these paintings……bla..bla…..bla… music.  I do not know how to end that sentence.  After 10 years of painting music I still don’t have the answer that best describes this art and its relationship to a lot of pretty darn good music.  I still working on the enlightenment phase.

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H The Water is Wide image 1

•05/20/2017 • Leave a Comment

This Scottish folk song The Water is Wide has origins that are hundreds of years old.  Pete Seeger first popularized the song in the Folk music era.  This is a live celebration version of The Water is Wide,  sung by  Emmylou Harris,  for Pete Seeger’s 90th birthday:


The Water is Wide first came to my attention from this wonderful cello version by Steven Sharp Nelson:


This little artwork’s two canvases along with metal and wood pieces is just over thirty-seven inches, and continues  the look of the music  flowing outside the canvas framing.  These smaller works are marketable,  quicker to produce and are a good for experimenting.  They are worth doing, although their smaller physical size difference does have a visual impact.  What does not change,  no mater the size of the artwork,  is the level of importance of the music chosen for each painting. The differences in sizes comes from the design of the music that can make it easier to portray on a smaller artworks.

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Concerto for 2 Cellos in G minor, RV 531, Allegro, Final Image

•05/11/2017 • Comments Off on S_V_H Concerto for 2 Cellos in G minor, RV 531, Allegro, Final Image

This Vivaldi artwork is finished.  Like each of the Vivaldi Four Seasons series of thirteen painting, this Vivaldi also took considerable amount of time, almost two months, to complete.  The length of the artwork, over eight feet,  and the complications in the building the music that flowed all over the edges, slowed the entire process.  My thinking for the next painting is to choose a subject that will be a quicker to complete. Of course, that plan is practical only up to the point of starting.

I do not plan on selling this work, although two-thousand would tempt me.  One reason not to sell is that this Vivaldi is already hanging in our living room. My practical reason to keep it apart of my collection,  is that it would be extremely expensive and complicated to package up and ground ship,  such a delicate eight foot artwork.  Finally, my personnel and best reasoning for not wanting to sell this artwork,  is that it represents my emotional attachment to the music of Antonio Vivaldi.

I believe this Vivaldi is a leap forward for this art. I am not sure how I will reproduce this look, but I do know all the following artworks for this year will display its influence.


Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Concerto for 2 Cellos in G minor, RV 531, Allegro, Image3

•05/04/2017 • 1 Comment

I have the rhythm of this artwork in place.  With this painting I am using shades from black to light gray to present to the eye a sense of movement (a fundamental of music).  Not only does this adds interest,  but it may also generate the look of motion in the rhythmic up and down flow across this artwork.  I actually tried this before as you can see in the 2012 painting Blackbird:

BlackBird, 2012

In this artwork I inserted smaller circles inside the music in different positions with the hope that a viewer would sense movement.  I used this technique, with mixed success,  on a number other works from early 2011 to early 2012,  and then stopped.  I am not sure if different shades across the artwork will work  any better to capture that illusive sense of movement in a still painting, but it may be worth pursing at less  until I reach creative boredom.  Than I can move on. This is all part of my education in that elusive chase of the next dangling carrot on my way to developing a unique artist style, and offering my never-ending curiosity, about how this all will end, renewed faith.  Maybe, over time I may even convince myself that there is a future in painting this one theme, over and over again.

In tribute to doing it again, this is my Five-hundredth blog posting.  My goal is to match Vincent Van Gogh’s  letter total of 651 to his brother Theo.  That made up challenge is in reach, as I see that the pace of development of this art form is speeding forward as planned.

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Concerto for 2 Cellos in G minor, RV 531, Allegro, Image2

•04/24/2017 • Comments Off on S_V_H Concerto for 2 Cellos in G minor, RV 531, Allegro, Image2

Because of the complications of this artwork I delayed posting this second image of my theme song: Vivaldi’s Concerto for 2 Cellos in G minor. This acrylic artwork, made up of four canvases, metal and wood,  is 97 inches in length.  Originally, I wanted to use only three canvases, but the open stretch of 26 inches between canvases, and the demands of music, made adding another small canvas a simplifying move.

I am basing  this painting on the first movement of this concerto three-parts, but for fun here is a video form the third movement.  It displays Vivaldi’s relevancy and endurance in an exceptionally enthusiastic head shaking matter:

Classical works, let this one, have a lot longer phrases (breaks in the music) than what you see in any of my pop, jazz or blues paintings.  I have call these phrases, in the past,  the flow of the artwork.  To be truer to my music,  when speaking about the flow of the artwork, it would be better to refer to the rhythm of a painting. Rhythm, speaks to both visual goals of these artworks which is not only to have a smooth up and down movement of the music across the canvases, but that both ends of the artwork balance out each other.

I have made a noticeable change in the look of  the stems of the music that in the past, were laid flat with the wide side up. For this painting I  turn the short side of the stems to the front. This has a narrowing effect that makes the stems look more pronounced, as they stand higher than the music heads. This different design has created a concern that with the diminished size of the background,  along with the slender look of the stems, presents a look that appears more like sheet music. That would be the antithesis of this art.  I know my current plan is to diminish the look of the background, but this artworks direction will surely need some added touches to punch-up the originality

Scott Von Holzen


S_V_H Concerto for 2 Cellos in G minor, RV 531, Allegro

•04/07/2017 • Comments Off on S_V_H Concerto for 2 Cellos in G minor, RV 531, Allegro

This painting will never be for sale, and will forever hang in my studio, for this music is my theme music. I do not think I can call the first movement from a concerto a song.

This artwork is a little over eight feet in length, and uses a style busting disruption of three ten inch wide canvases that are not directly connected to each other.

Here is the first movement from Antonio Vivaldi’s Concerto RV531:

This artwork is as much about building a painting, as it is about painting. I am increasingly spending project time planning, building,  solving construction and placement issues of the music, that at this point in this art history, I can say that it is not correct to call this art form acrylic painting, anymore. 

Scott Von Holzen


S_V_H When Doves Cry Final image

•04/01/2017 • Comments Off on S_V_H When Doves Cry Final image

When Doves Cry 2017, acrylic paint, three canvas panels with wood and aluminum added, 52.5 inches in length by 25.75 in height.

When  Doves Cry is finished and is my second artwork dedicated to Prince.  I decided to do another Purple painting, because reluctantly, I sold the first. This artwork than shares style and the basic color themes from the painting Purple Rain, while expanding the colors and not using Purple Rain’s rounded flat disks for the purple rain.  Instead, for When Doves Cry, I poured the paint to create a better looking and rounder purple rain.  The big difference between these two works is the use of aluminum strips to connect canvases.  This new connection method used by When Doves Cry, for first time,  separates the music from the canvas.  This artwork is the result of an evolution in style that started with my first use of wood with Sweet little angel.

The first Prince painting, Purple Rain, represented a style pushed to its limits. This second Prince artwork, breaks with the past, by opening the door for other style possibilities.  When Doves Cry is a unique tribute to the originality that was Prince and his music.

Scott Von Holzen