BBAC’s 38th MFAC

Yay! My painting “Stasis Hiatus” was accepted for the BBAC’s 38th annual, 2019 Michigan Fine Arts Competition.

This will be my fourth time participating in this 5-state regional competition. Come to the opening, and see all the amazing work selected by this years Juror Jerald Melberg.

I hope to see you there.

Exhibition Opens — Fri., Jun. 21; Reception 6-8pm – Awards Presentation around 7pm

Exhibition Closes — Thurs., Aug 22, 5pm

BBAC Gallery Summer Hours
Mon.-Sat., 9am-5pm

1516 S. Cranbrook, Birmingham, MI 48009


Zap Zap

Electric Utility Poles interest me for a few reasons.

  • They’re ignored yet ubiquitous.
  • They’re reminiscent of a crucifix yet come in many variations.
  • They jettison up into the sky.
  • I imagine invisible current running all around and through them.

This illustrates a new process for me. I started working a little differently by combining loose brushy abstract marks with figurative forms inspired from my snapshots around my neighborhood.


Me and Tiff (re-shot)

I asked Larry at Fine Art Printing to reshoot these portrait paintings of Tiff and I, because my shots didn’t accurately represent the originals. As you can see below, the new shots are much better.

Thanks a bunch Larry & Tim. Glad to have your help.


Ben Jamin | painting progress animation

This repeating animated gif file shows the development of my latest painting titled, Ben Jamin.

The realistic landscape depicts the Benjamin Avenue Viaduct in Royal Oak, Michigan toward the end of winter.

There are several dilapidated 1930’s viaducts in Royal Oak. They are a point of contention with the residents of the city for various reasons, including questionable structural safety, potholes, trash, and graffiti.

A year or so ago, a friend of mine, artist Carl Oxley III, decided to call attention to the state of disrepair the viaduct near his place was in, and he painted a mural of his signature bunnies on the wall. Well, it turns out graffiti is illegal and someone complained about it to the city. The city responded very swiftly by apprehending Carl and painting over his bunny mural with gray paint. (See my rendition below) Carl learned a thing or two through this process about the city and how it has no control over railroad crossings, but plenty over covering up graffiti.

Anyway, to make a long story short, his story stuck with me. I found myself taking pictures of the viaduct on Benjamin Ave., near my studio, toward the end of winter/early spring. This painting is the result of my curiosity. I love the stains on the concrete, and the texture of the leaves and potholes. I like the subtle differences of the gray squares covering old graffiti and the peeling paint. I like the light, the shadows, and the perspective. Most importantly, I like the challenge it was representing this space accurately. On the sidewalk, I’ve included one of Carl’s bunny yard signs under some leaves, as an homage. He sold those yard signs to people who wanted to support his cause of calling attention to the problem.

Check out this painting in my portfolio.


‘Rocky Climb’ Best of Show

Wonderful art news!

So very grateful to be selected not only to participate, but win Best of Show (2D fine art) in EC’s online exhibit ‘WARMTH’ with my painting ‘Rocky Climb‘.

Embrace Creatives YouTube channel: slide show of online exhibition titled Warmth.


My Favorites Exhibition at GPAA

Yay! I'm in the Grosse Pointe News today! Opening tomorrow at 2pm Jan. 26th, @ the War Memorial!

The “My Favorite” exhibition continues through Sunday, March 10. It is open daily 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at The War Memorial, 32 Lakeshore, Grosse Pointe Farms. Call (313) 881-3454.


The making of Stasis Hiatus

stop motion animation showing the development of the painting titled, "Stasis Hiatus" by Steve Miller.

I began painting "Stasis Hiatus" in November of 2018. This has been one of the most rewarding and  difficult paintings I've made to date.

Originally, I was open to portraying the interior loosely and painterly, inspired by an artist I stumbled upon on Instagram. However, as I went along, I found myself excited by the prospect of pushing the image realistically, and taming the visual chaos of the room.

I am portraying a moment I experience often when walking into my studio. The need to decide whether to get to work on a painting that I'm not fully invested in yet, or play the drums for instant gratification.

My father used to talk to me about the subject often. He felt the need for instant gratification was a real stumbling block in our society. I can see his point, however, procrastination can also lead to creativity.

Look At My Painting "Stasis Hiatus".


Portrait of my Aunt Marge

acrylic portrait painting by Steve Miller
8×8″, acrylic on wood panel with 1.5″ profile, completed 11/9/18, © Steve Miller 2018

My Aunt Marjory passed away recently. I made this portrait in memory of her as a gift for my California cousins. I haven’t seen that side of my family in decades, and I look forward to joining them soon, as we celebrate the life of this wonderful, joyful, humorous woman.

This portrait was based on the above photo that I believe was taken by my cousin Lynette. I usually work from my own photos, but since this was a surprise, I worked with this image, found on Facebook, that I feel captures her spirit. In the original photo, she was celebrating 50 years of supporting The League of Women Voters.


The Ice Cream Truck is Coming

Image of a Painting by Steve Miller titled, "Allowance".
12″x16″, acrylic on wood panel, with a depth of 1.5″, completed 11/2/2018, © Steve Miller 2018

I finished this painting of my girls getting ice cream from the ice cream truck over this past summer. It’s based on a snapshot I took.

We allow them to pay for that sort of thing with their allowance, and sometimes the oldest treats her sister using her allowance, because the youngest spent all her money. I think this was the case here. So, I’m calling this painting “Allowance”. Hopefully, it will often remind my youngest that her older sister loves her.

Here’s some details of the progression from my instagram page

Allowance portfolio post.


Zoe

small pet portrait by Steve Miller titled, "Zoe", completed October, 2018
8″x8″, acrylic on wood panel with 1.5″ profile, completed 10/8/18, © Steve Miller 2018

This small pet portrait was made for two dear friends in memory of their beloved little Pomeranian family member named Zoe.


Dress Makers

Image of a Painting by Steve Miller titled, "Dress Makers".
9″x12″, acrylic on wood panel with 1.5″ profile, completed 10/10/18, © Steve Miller 2018

Boredom leads to creativity. This small painting of my girls was made from a photo I took of them toward the end of summer 2018, after complaining about being bored.

I’ve posted some of the progress shots on my Instagram and Facebook page.

Dress Makers portfolio post