Chopin Prelude update

This is another update of an artwork that was moved from an aluminum frame to a stretched canvas frame. This music box is 2021’s Chopin Prelude.

Chopin Prelude completed in November of 2021 and pictured here updated in late October of 2022.

Pictured here is the original finished Chopin Prelude main frame brought up from storage. Both the speakers and the long ending notes are removable in storage.

The backside of the original the aluminum frame that the canvas and speakers where hung from.

This image of the updated Chopin, showing the stretched canvases that replaced the aluminum frame. The artwork’s canvas is secured at the top with a galvanized bar and held against the stretched canvases with magnets. The two 36 inch by 24 inch canvases are attached with 31/2″ 1/4″ bolts, offering a much stronger, and sturdier support for the artwork. No other updates were performed on this music box.


Roger’s poem: My younger Brother Roger passed away a year ago this last August. In a tribute to him I wrote this story poem that I read at his celebration of life, this last June 4th. I believe this poem contains universal relatable moments that many who have lost one close may find some value. It is a story poem of choice, of moving ahead in life with instead of without. (This poem is in fifteen parts or sections and with each new blog post, there will be added one additional part. I am currently posting sections 1-13)


Roger’s poem

The sun in winter
is all too short.
Who knew as you move through our lives,
that yours would follow the winter sun.

Winter arrests time
for thought and reflection
that February afternoon.
Dressed for warmth
we venture out,
Into the soft light,
surrounded by stillness,
not an oak leaf stirring. 

The cold of that yesterday
 is heard in the crackling crunch
 of fresh fallen snow, 
 as I straddled previous steps
 along a well-worn path,
 deep into the woods.

Although I think
we are alone,
Zelda knows better,
her actions are telling. 
Life and the deer are about. 
Stopping with her tail up,
head sharply flipping, 
to-and-fro sensing something_, 
I also pause,
feeling a stirring in the air.
With her nose to the snow, 
Zelda looks to turn off the known path, 
to explore another trail, 
far less traveled. 
Her interest, I cannot foresee,
or know where it leads. 

Before I can call her back
to the safe way forward,
Winter freezes my momentum,
with a stinging breeze
across my cheeks,
breaking the silence,
awakening concerns.
Had I dressed warm enough?
I feel and pat
my coat,
all was there.
Then it came to me,
that it was not the cold,
but the wind, returning to me
moments once set
quietly away.
I wondered why on a
cold Winter’s Day
on this made-up path,
at this crossroad
in these common woods, 
this walk halted,
by an unforeseen breeze
sending a shiver
tumbling inside, 
then out into the light.
Why over all my many memories,
did I find this one exposed
from beneath Winter’s blanket_,
a consciousness,
an awareness,
that once_, 
was you? 

But time was fleeting.
I had let pass 
the diminishing forest light
and our late start.
Fearing the coming darkness
will hide this path,
I call Zelda back
to the safe way home. 
For Home is where we want to be. 
What choice have I,
but to be on our way. 
We had to turn back,
for time does not. 
I could only turn away. 

Those moments have passed
this another Winter’s Day,
although the cold
is harder to ignore,
our routine beckons. 
Although she cares less,
I dressed Zelda in a purple coat
and I in my heaviest hooded jacket,
thankful that each new walk
the sun grows nearer,
and longer,
and the return less concerning.  

Along the way
Zelda repeats her many stops,
on our well-walked path. 
And for a distance
all seems as it should,
until the quiet is interrupted
by a strong gust
pressing against my coat,
pausing our step. 
I feel this air’s warmth, 
as I look to see Zelda stopped ahead, 
her ears pushed back 
by the wind, standing at that 
barely a crossroad 
from yesterday. 
Her brown nose twitching 
in this comforting air. 
Although surprised 
to see her at this divide, 
I have a smile of déjà vu, 
by a long-ago line, 
from a well-used book of poetry 
now gathering dust, 
from the poet Robert Frost__, 
“Two roads diverged in a wood…” 
Two roads, 
in a wood. 
that is all I recalled. 
With a sigh and interest 
I pursue 
this other trail upwards, 
to see it following 
the rush of rolling clouds, 
knowing soon these winter paths 
will turn to mud, 
preventing our return, 
until the frozen has left. 
Thus beginning the awakening, 
ending Winter’s parsing of time, 
with days merging all too quickly. 
We will lose ourselves 
to work to be done, 
and unforeseen tasks, 
demands and bills to pay, 
that surely will come. 

Though today 
Winter still decides, 
in the fast blanketing 
approach of low clouds 
bursting with snow 
and ice pellets, 
pirouetting down to us, 
if in an effort 
to hide our way, 
on this favored path. 

But wait! 
Where is Zelda? 
I see her brown eyes turned away 
as she slow trots 
along the untrampled path. 
Concerned I call her back 
when from behind 
I am shoved stepping forward, 
by a distant hum  
that becomes a gusting woosh, 
shaking the treetops, 
that then fads slowly 
to a murmuring sound, 
all so astonishingly familiar, 
awakening a time 
thought placed away_, 
when I held your hand, 
my eyes focus on your whispered breath, 
not knowing what would be your last_. 
Until now. 

For Winter’s calmness has returned.
And I am hearing only
my own breathing. 
And although I know 
that this air we can no longer share, 
as if to awaken
Winter’s silence, 
I inhale deeply in, 
then out that which gives me life, 
in a last hope, 
it may find you, 
and I may again 
hear a whisper of you_,
still here. 

But that time and faith
has passed by me,
leaving now only the understanding,
that I was meant to be
a part of your irreplaceable story,
a witness to your bravest 
moment of unselfish courage, 
that enveloped everyone 
in the room not of your choice, 
that became your 
last unforeseen loving gift__, 
the fearlessness of letting go__. 
That it was alright__, 
to let go. 
I see that now, 
what other choice have I, 
other than to love you_, 
and so I, 
let your hand, 
fall away, 
from mine. 

But that moment too has passed by me, 
and I am here, 
in this Winter woods, 
at this crossroad, 
without you 
questioning our way Home. 
For Home is where I want to be. 
And Home is where you are no longer. 
What choice have I 
other than to let you go,	 
knowing each breath I take 
you will still be with me 
long after Winter has passed. 

Section 1thru 13 of be continued.

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Chopin Prelude Op. 28 No. 4

I have been working on this next project since October 8th. This work will be another Interactive Constructive Sculpture or to shorten the style name this is my next Music Box construction. Yes, as mentioned in previous posts the music has now become an integral part of this art, or then again, the music has now become a separate art performance attached to a visual artwork with the same name. Names or styles do not matter. What matters is originality and capturing the attention of the viewer.

According to Wikipedia, this music was requested by Chopin to be played at his funeral. I probably first heard it in the movie The Pianist, 2002, which I do remember watching. Rediscovering it lately I didn’t think of this music being necessarily sad or tragic, but rather a great example that reaches deep into my understanding of musical appreciation. I am not talking but music that touches one’s soul. That seems meaningless to me, for just what is “one’s soul?” I cannot define it, but I can say I feel it when I listen to it. Here is the version from the soundtrack of the movie The Pianist, which is two minutes and twenty-six seconds in length.

Of course, to not strain a viewer’s attention span much beyond one minute, I had to do some musical chopping. I have this draft arrangement that any Chopin fan would find shabby in comparison to the original. I would agree with that. That does change what I had to do. Viewers in front of a Picasso, Van Gogh, or Rembrandt artwork would be hard-pressed to last even one minute. Currently, the music is about a minute and a half, which is long. My hope is by editing out some of the repetitious measures, and upping the pace, that the music will keep the listener’s attention from drifting. The ending is also uplifting compared to all the covers I listened to. That is to keep the viewer from dozing off.

Chopin Prelude

The following is the only picture I have of this project. On a group of tables, I have laid out an idea of how the music will sweep across and beyond a six-foot-long, by two-foot canvas, it will somehow be mounted on.

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Chopin Polonaise in A Flat major Final image

Chopin Polonaise in A Flat Major, Op 53, 24 inches by 36 inches

This Chopin artwork is finished, kinda.  Since it is going to be around the studio for a few more days, I probably will touch it up, because this is one of my rare artworks, that has to be framed to actually look finished. Of course, this is a commission work, so I will have to wait for the image of it hanging in the Music room to see how good this artwork really is.

That now means that it is time for me to get back to the good stuff of finishing my half done Tom Petty artwork,  pound out a few more Mini-artworks for my Etsy website, and get in the mood for this years Christmas Painting, Silver Bells.

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Chopin’s Polonaise in A flat major 4 image

This fourth image of this popular Chopin music is near finished. I am also surprised how well this painting moved along, without  any major issues.  The planning had to be good because of my limited working space, and that paid off for there is not much I would change. The overall look of the music is pretty good considering I had to fit a lot of Chopin into 36 inches by 24 inches without the artwork looking crowded. All that is now left is for me to do is to sharpen the edges, shape up the music,  clean up the background,  write in the title of the music, and finally sign and date.

Since this work is different from my current style I do have so thoughts on how this project is turning out.  I like the reflective qualities of the silver and bronze colors, and their changing colors in different light and angles.  That is a surface feature for me, but also it works well with my theme of simulating movement in these artworks. Reliving the past with the flatness, and especially the oblong shape of the music are two traits that can create  highly marketable artworks,  especially to musicians.  Although I will not return to this look unless commissioned, I still enjoyed the challenge and income of this type of project.

Scott Von Holzen

S_VH_H Classical Music Series of Mini Paintings

This is my first Series of mini-artworks based on four well-known Classical music composers.  Moving clockwise from the left I have Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto,  Frederic Chopin’s Nocturne Op. 9 No. 2, J.S. Bach’s Cello Suite No. 1 in G major ,and Beethoven’s 5th Symphony.  These are all individual artworks, that I will be making multiples of each.   The Chopin and Bach works are the largest being over 13 inches in length by 13 inches in height.   I have documented the production each of these artwork, using templates and some standardized parts, to reduce time along with the price.  I am looking at $89 for the Beethoven and $125 for the other three as a starting prices for this Series 1.  These works will be available on my Etsy painting site before December 1st.


In the video I referred to my neighboring vendor’s display of his 39 dollar sea turtles.  Here is that picture of these little critters that he sold all day long  and what became an awakening at my first Art and Craft Fair in Appleton Wis:

So it goes………….

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Chopin Polonaise Op. 53

This is the third image of Chopin’s Polonaise Op. 53.  Even though I have eliminated every rule of sheet music that defines it, and none of my artworks if attempted to be played would actually sound like the music they are portraying, that look of sheet music is definitely in this painting.  This is not an issue with Classical Music because I choose music that is in the Public Domain.  Still, I don’t generally paint music this way, because of the look, and because I would like this art to appeal to a greater audience of music lovers who would not necessarily understand music notation.

But……, what separates this artwork from most of my other current work, is that this painting is marketable to a large segment of potential customers which are musicians and lovers of Classical Music. These people know their music better than I do, and want to see the music in their artworks, and know where the painting appears in the original music. That is true of my client for this artwork which will be a gift for a musician.  As this art keeps moving forward creativity I must not forget what has gotten me to where I am today, and what will still support this adventure in the future.

Besides viewing Image 3 you can also see and listen to this wonderful piece by Chopin’s Polonaise in A flat:

For the most part the music is in place, and it does fit in this constricted format. The next step, which I have already started is to add some technical musical items you find in sheet music. I see all this add-on stuff as interest.  In this short excerpt Chopin used a number of “grace notes,” two “trills,” a couple of “crushed notes,” and a “fortissimo.” Each of these items need to be drawn in, and I am not a drawer. I rather take a photograph to save time. Like the words you see in most of my artworks my drawing skills need a lot of time, patience and determination to make sure the results are beyond  acceptable. Next up I will be adding more interest like “ties,” and “diminuendos.”

if you like to see another image of this music take a look at this piece of the original Chopin signed manuscript of this music,


Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Chopin Polonaise Op.53 image 2

This is Frederic Chopin’s surprising  Polonaise Op. 53 image two. The surprise is to see so much music already in place.  I have not painted in this style since the Japan artwork in early 2016.  I do remember the difficulties with that similar commissioned  Kyoto artwork, and because this time of the year is busy, I knew I needed to find time-saving measures to meet my client’s timeline.  My first idea was to draw in lines that I could than use to guide the orderly placement of the music.  I changed the size , color and brightness, of each group to blend in with the background while still being able to connect to the music.

I than improved on an idea I used with the Kyoto painting.   Using a thin piece of plywood I cut out the music to size. I than attached a square post and guide markers.  It did not take long to than learned that I could use it as a musical stamp. This saves me from the tedious task of free hand drawing in each note.


This artwork has a background of Burnt Sienna that I covered with Burnt Umber light.  I than added Burnt Umber light to the bronze paint to get the shades I wanted with the main music lines.  The smaller accent lines I painted bone black.  For the music I am using the same Winsor & Newton Silver I used for the Japan work.  When I show the Japan work, as an example,  my customer like it for the silver made the music stand out from the background.

Scott Von Holzen


Both the silver and the bronze are reflective acrylic paint colors, that change shades when viewed at different angles and in different lights. This effect creates a visual delight to the eyes.  It is as if you can see the vibrations of the music of Chopin move across the canvas.  Looking at this painting I feel the joy that is on display.  This unfinished Classical artwork is already making an impact. Chopin’s Polonaise defines this arts philosophy of making visual music that grabs at you emotions as if my notes where the sound.




S_V_H Chopin’s Polonaise in A flat major, Op. 53

I have painted Chopin in the past and certainly in the future, but,  in the now I am also painting Chopin.  This time it is one of his 23 Polonaises, and one of Chopin’s most admired compositions, published in 1843, according to Wikipedia. The casual listener to Classical Music will know this melody if not the composer.

Here is Vladmir Horowitz cruising through the hard parts of this Chopin Polonaise.  It is at 1:18 minutes and over the next second you hear the music of this artwork. Also, using Wikipedia I found the meaning of polonaise which is a dance of polish origins. Okay!

The smaller detail image and the full first image look a lot a like, and are not much to look it. That is because this artwork is a flash back in style to the 2016 Bach painting for the Grand Bach Hotel in Kyoto Japan.  This Chopin artwork is obviously different from my last post featuring the music of Tom Petty, and that is because it is a commissioned requested artwork to be done in the Grand Bach painting style.

Here is  the Bach BWV 988 – Aria painting, which is 64 inches in length, while the Chopin work is 24 inches by 36 inches.

Next up I need to add a foundation to place the music on. It will be something like what you see in those darker brown rectangular strips in the Bach painting.  This is important to do for by adding an intermediary structure on top of the background that will than connect it to the music.  Otherwise, if it is left out the music would seem to be floating in an empty space. My challenge is to accomplish this in way so that this Chopin painting updates this style.  I am not doing this project to repeat the Bach painting with a name and music change only.

Scott Von Holzen