Mahaloness

Contemporary artist specializing in full spectrum painting, mural, animation and digital hybrid art.


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the artist journey 

“An ideal is always a judge, you are not as good as your ideal, you always fall short”.  -C. Jung    

I never went to art school and the only art training I had was what I learned in grade school, long ago in the days of my adolescence. It’s funny to to think that painting found me, we just kind of bumped into each other and many years later I find myself still in love with the process. It has been a journey to say the least, countless hours with paint and god knows how many canvases, in all shapes and sizes, it’s difficult to comprehend. If it weren’t for a stubborn resolve I possibly would have thrown in the towel long ago and at no point in my early life did I think, I want to be an artist. It literally found me and ever since I have managed to do it mostly my way, albeit a few hiccups along the way. 

the road less travelled


I possess a healthy dose of what you would call ambition, I wanted to be the best damn painter I can possibly be, probably due to the fact I spent a good portion the first quarter century of my life in some kind of competitive sport. When I started painting I had a tiny amount of life experience. I guess it was enough to know that art was something I liked and although the promise of success was very low I made the decision that this is what I wanted to do with my life. I spent a little time in the gallery system and found it didn’t jive well with me, it seemed constricted, clique, and limited. Instead I chose the solo art pilgrimage, which I want to point out is very much a life long journey. And like any journey there are times when things are calm and ordered and there are times when chaos reigns. I have found that both have their advantages and disadvantages and it’s a fine line to tread, you can interpret that however you like, it is meant as a cautionary warning. 

a bus mural I painted, it was total chaos, three months of it, I didn’t think I was going to finish, and miraculously I did.


Over the years I have learned to develop a system, one might say ‘rules’, to produce my paintings. Despite the flickers of brilliance that come out of the chaos it is a zone that I do not recommend one stay in. I also appreciate calm, stillness and the solitude of a good paint session. No doubt I like to be on the fringe which includes the subject matter I work with, the projects I choose to do, and in some cases the projects that find me. I think the difference between now and then is I have moved towards a balance, a combination that has proven to work well and ensures that I will be doing my art for as long as possible. 

‘easty westy’ a painting by hälts from a chaotic period in his life, living in Toronto in the early 2000’s


 

 Q: What is the ideal? 

A: That’s not for me to answer, however having experienced the chaos side of things I think there is something to be said about the advantages of having a foot in order and calm. 

fotoMahaloness 

And now a gallery of fotos featuring moments from the winter season inside and out of the studio. 

winter beach scene

unintentional artefacts, these form by paint drying on my paint tube spouts, I have been collecting them for a future artwork, I try to not waste material, it’s a golden rule.

‘blue Tara’ 🔹 hälts Hybrid art featuring my first Tara painting reimagined in the digital realm

‘SLO’ hälts painting detail low angle foto (the medium is acrylic)

I have been selling prints now for many years, this is ‘the Healer’ hälts Fine Art Print with custom frame, I used my drop cloth as a background and the client was thrilled

I have been working on a series called ‘recycled art’, this particular painting is on cardboard and is called ‘pink sun’, this is a series of works that explore the recycling of art, ideas and a materials.


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many studios 

My studio has been in a state of steady flux, painting after painting after painting, miraculously a body of work has amassed, something of which I have not done for quite some time. Perhaps ‘miraculously’ is not the right word, how about hard work, perseverance and discipline have contributed to my little victories. So what has been driving me to make art? It’s hard to sum up in a blog, however I will do my best to list a few of those things that make me get up and continue on my journey. The reality of the matter is its hard to make art, there are so many distractions, and stimulations that finding ones voice, let alone time or space, is a rather daunting task. There is politics, that’s all I will say about that. There is economics, social, family, health, and environmental factors to consider, or not, either way they won’t go away. This is not new to contemporary art, there is a long history of a few big fish rising to the top while the rest of the little fish just squeak by, or in some cases completely disappear from the map.  I have this dream once and a while, I am climbing the ladder and it looks to be a really long ladder, all the way up into the sky, similar to the amazing Chinese artist, Cai Guo-Qiang, who makes a sky ladder out of fireworks, not exactly an easy ladder to climb. In yet almost every day, I get up, I eat breakfast, sip a coffee and get to work. I am what could be described as a stubborn person, I really don’t want to give up, even though I know exactly what a I am up against and have experienced more times than once, the implications of failure. To add to this dilemma there is the fact that I am human with a conscience. The mind is an extraordinary power, however it doesn’t mean it’s always shooting for the stars, I have my days when I get the sense I’m  in the John in ‘Being John from Being John Malcovich’ and there’s these voices floating in my head telling me quit, to stop while I am ahead, go ahead and procrastinate, don’t quit your day job, and so on. It’s really annoying albeit a wonderful gift to be able to perceive the world through our senses and than contemplate on that, all the while being swept up in it and never really doing a damn thing about it. That’s okay though we as a species have been through a lot, and there does exist a burden to carry even if you are blind. So where’s this all coming from, well partly I’ve been having a few revelations courtesy Jordon Peterson who I have been following for a while, and have been reading his books ‘Maps and Meanings’ and ’12 Rules for Life’, both are great. One of his points is the concept ‘responsibility’ and it is a heavy one, loaded with all sorts of meaning and implications. 

Responsibility 

I have always felt that being an artist there’s a certain level of responsibility that goes with it, even though I didn’t always know what that meant, and to be clear I am still working on that problem, it’s a lot to comprehend. I am at now a stage in my art and life where I have a pretty good sense of the impact my art has on people’s lives, not just one person, many people, and this is an important point, because this seems to me this is what Jordan Perterson is talking about in his book ’12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos’ ( Link to Jordan Peterson’s website ) . To use the example of driving a car, I need to put the shifter into the responsibility gear and take care of the self, so I can continue to bring my art and consciousness into the world in the best way possible even though I know the odds are somewhat stacked up against me, one foot is the accelerator, chaos, and the other the brake, order, ok good blog, carry on! 

fotoMahaloness 

This is a collection of studio fotos, some have been digitally altered, all of them digital documents of moments in time either following a paint session and or a pre foto before the work begins. The many studios of hälts…

The office desk after the chaos

‘pink dragon’ WIP recycled art series

Sometimes painting can be like a desert, you never no where the next island oasis is and the illusions are a plenty.

I was spraying frames and have devised ways to contain most of the chaos…

‘the Healer’ painting which is going to be featured in an up and coming blog here on Mahaloness, background is a detail from a bus mural did back in 2010-11

I recommend lawn painting very Mahaloness.

‘Radiant child’ part of my recycled art series acrylic airbrush and brush on cardboard

My Keith Haring background for my recycled art painting ‘Atomic Unicorn’

I once painted in this room, in public, beautiful light all day, and my mural ‘creator’ keeping me company, this is the early stages of my ‘Healer’ painting

My painting ‘Earth Buddha’ also started out as a live painting and was finished in the studio, now on display at yogaMcc (http://www.yogamcc.com) located in Marda Loop Calgary, and is available for sale, that’s my Fineline fish in the background.

Paia Town Northshore Maui outdoor backyard studio I had for a couple months, magical times.

My Salvador Dali zoetrope hand painted animation on slats, I was commissioned by a friend and collaborated with wood master Peter Friemen who goes as conscious_wood on IG, Colin Smith came up with the idea for a zoetrope, commissioned Peter to design and build it, and I did a hand painted animation which was displayed at the Art Gallery of Alberta for a show by Colin Smith, an amazing Albertan photographer extraordinaire.

a dragon I painted on a felt fedora for a buddhy, not the easiest material to paint on, however it worked out great circa 2015