Friday, February 27, 2009

Class Exercise



These are exercises we did in class this week. The idea is from Kevin Macpherson's book Landscape Painting-Inside and Out. The top picture is taken of the still life with a warm light shining on it. The bottom is of the same still life with just natural light. Using a view finder, the little hole punch size ones you find on a gray value scale chart, we matched and labeled 8 color notes. No matter the level of the artist, exercises are always great and really get you thinking, not just jumping right in and painting.


Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Creamer

6 x 6 oil on canvas panel
$100.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

This is the creamer from our daughter's teaset which was my mother-in-law's. I spent almost as much time setting this up as I did painting it. When I painted one of the teacups (2 weeks ago) I had it on an older green placemat. So, now I wanted it on a different, warmer, background. I thought of what our daughter played with it on...a garage sale plastic table covered in flowered contact paper. That wasn't quite the look that I wanted. I wondered what my mother-in-law would have set her teaset on in 1925. Probably a linen tablecloth or a wooden table or floor. I got out all the old linens, looked through them all, tried the creamer on several, decided I didn't want white on white, and didn't want to iron. I chose the wooden table. It was fun working with the reflection in the wood.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Three Apples

9 x 12 oil on canvas panel
$100.00 + $10. s/h
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In this piece I was really trying to push the color notes.
Today I received a handwritten postcard from the Cushman family, the owners of the HoneyBell Company. If you read my blog last month, I did 5 daily paintings of the oranges we had received for Christmas, and entered them, and myself, in the bib wearing contest. The family loved my art, thanked me for the photos, and will check out my blog. It's not often you get personal notes anymore. Made my day.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

More Garlic

6 x 6 oil on canvas
$100.00 + $10. s/h
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I used a different garlic, different light, different time of day, different fabric from yesterdays' painting. These differences created a completely different mood. It really makes a difference!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Garlic Pressed

I recently came up with an easy way to hold my daily painting small canvases. As you see above,
I've taken a 9 x 12 cardboard panel (I used the back panel of a canvas pad) and taped a strip of 1/2 " wide foam board across the bottom. Then I set the canvas on that ledge and put another 1/2 " foam board strip across the top of the panel. I clip the strip at both edges with heavy clips. Because of the cushiony foam inside of the foam board, you push down a little before clipping, and it really holds the canvas well. It's then easy to carry outside to photograph. I've put vertical strips of masking tape at the edges where a 6 x 6 and a 6 x 8 canvas would hit. This just protects the back panel a little. These are easy to set on my easel. I've tried using push pins and duct tape, and like this method. I now have several of these, so I can leave the painting on until it's dry.



6" x 6" oil on canvas panel
$100.00 + $10. s/h
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I wanted to work with reflective light on white. I have a blue fabric on the right side and a pinkish one on the top-left side. It really exaggerates the reflections. And I wanted to work with a light subject on a light background. I usually go for more contrast.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

More Bloomers

6" x 9" oil on canvas on board
$100.00 + $10. s/h
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This is another yucca painting from a morning out last summer with my plein-air group. I think next summer I'll take pictures of the outdoor locations where we are painting and include those with the post. Another great thing about blogging is seeing all the different landscapes, flowers, etc from all the different geographic locations of online artists.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Yucca Bloom

6" x 9" oil on canvas on board
$100.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

This is a daily painting from last summer before I was blogging. There is about a 2 week period in late June (usually) when the yucca are in bloom. For those of you who don't know, these yucca are blooming. My plein-aire group went twice to the yucca field to paint good blooms. The first time was just a bit before the blooms. So, we tried again. There are hundreds of yucca plants covering the top of a mesa, it's pretty spectacular.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Rose Shadow

6 x 8 oil on masonite
$100.00 + $10. s/h
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I had planned on painting this rose on a 6 x 6 panel. But when I turned on the light the shadow was as interesting as the rose. So, plan B happened without planning. It's interesting to me that the center of the shadow was so dark. I wasn't expecting that.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Three To Get Ready

6 x 8 oil on masonite
$100.00 + $10. s/h
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Mushrooms are a funny little food. They're kind of funny looking. Because of all the tints and shades of white, they're fun to paint. Can there be a tint of white? If a tint is a color plus white, there must be only shades of white. I'll have to think about this for awhile.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Color Studies

I mentioned last week that I should do some color studies of my extended palette. These are color studies that I've done in the past using my typical palette plus white. In the above study I started with cad red then mixed it 50/50% with each of the colors going across: cad yellow pale, cad yellow deep, yellow ochre, terra rosa, aliz. crimson, burnt sienna, veridean, cerulean, cobalt, ultramarine blue. Then, I mixed each of those paint piles with white and created tints going down. I probably could have mixed a little more white each time. That would have gotten me all the way to white at the bottom. But, I almost get there.


This chart shows Terra Rosa mixed 50/50 with each color going across then tinted with white going down. Terra Rosa is a wonderful color for landscape paintings. Again, had I mixed a little more white each time, I would have gotten all the way to white at the bottom.


This chart shows the same colors mixed with Cad Yellow Pale.

I don't look at these charts all the time. But, sometimes I'm standing at the easel, looking at the set-up, or a shadow, and I just don't know what colors to mix. These really help. I've also done many of these color value scales just mixing colors, not adding white.

Friday, February 13, 2009

White Rock

9 x 12 oil on canvas panel
$100.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested


In the middle of Colorado Springs is an almost 1400 acre park called Garden of the Gods. 2009 is the 100th anniversary of the park. The original owner left it to the city in 1909. One of his friends wanted him to turn it into a beer garden. Luckily, that didn't happen. The park is filled with towering sandstone rock formations and sits just below Pikes Peak. It's pretty spectacular. No matter how many times I visit the park, I'm always amazed. The rocks, the light and color, the shadows; they're always changing. The formations and spires all have names. The one in the front here is aptly named "White Rock".

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Still Life with White

12" x 16"
oil on canvas

I painted this still life last summer. I read Susan Sarback's book Capturing Radiant Colors in Oil, and did many of the color studies, even painting blocks to match those in the book to really see where she was coming from with her colors. She has a lot of knowledge and great thoughts. My block studies looked good. But, I found that sometimes my paintings looked muddy when layering. Must be my brush technique. In this still life, I got all the colors of the major masses blocked in, and then got side tracked by life, ie: I didn't get any further than the block-in layer. The objects sat in the studio, and several weeks later, when I got back to this setup, of course the block ins were dry. There was no muddy affect when I painted the next layer. I like the scumbling; it was really easy to allow the first layer of paint to show through. But, we don't always have that kind of time to let something sit.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Flamenco Dancer

6" x 6" oil on canvas panel
$100.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

My husband and I went to Sevilla, Spain last year to visit our daughter during her semester abroad. It is one of the most beautiful cities I've ever seen. Flamenco dancing originated in Sevilla. The Flamenco Museum was well worth the visit. This (and a scarf) were the only gift items we purchased. In case you are wondering...there used to be a dancer on the mug. I noticed after about 3-4 times in the dishwasher that the dancer was disappearing. So, I had my choice, use it and watch her wash away. Or, not use the mug and let it sit around. I decided to just use it. And, now I have a plain white mug: still good for my morning coffee and now great for painting white.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Tea Cup

6" x 6" oil on masonite
$100.00 + $10. s/h
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I wanted to continue studying white. My studio used to be our dining room. There are still some remains of a dining room: the china cabinet, the table (now covered with a plastic cloth and my supplies), the chairs (pushed to the side.) In the corner near my easel is my late mother-in-law's high chair. Sitting on the tray is her childhood tea set which she gave to our daughter when she was small. My mother-in-law was born in 1919, s0 the tea set was probably given to her in about 1925. I'm not sure why I didn't pack it up and put it away. But, there it's been, in my peripheral vision, all this time. I've been looking at this nice, little white tea set. Perfect to paint. Fun to paint. The glaze is chipped and worn and there is no longer a perfect dark blue ring around the top. There are four tea cups and saucers, a creamer, a sugar bowl, and a tea pot. I see many future paintings here.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Sliced

6" x 6" oil on masonite
$100.00 + $10. s/h
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I wanted to continue painting whites. This was the whitest vegetable we had at the moment. I'm not sure why, but the browns appear red and the grays appear blue. I played around with the color and couldn't get it to change; don't know what's going on. It's always something.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Shadow

6" x 8" oil on masonite
$100.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested
SOLD

I received a comment from Kelley MacDonald that she uses pthalo and rose for her snow color. So, for this piece I followed her suggestion. Permanent rose is not in my regular palette, but is in my extended palette, so I had not thought to use it for snow mixture. I really like the cool effect this mixture gives; I might tone it down a little more in another painting.

Using permanent rose got me to thinking again about my extended palette. I have colors from classes and workshops that I don't always use. I think I might do some color studies with these. I've done many color value scales in the past with and for my students, and for myself. Doing some again would be fun and would expand my color knowledge.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Ready Or Not

6" x 8" oil on masonite
$100.00 + $10. s/h
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When we walk, we usually follow the path. Even in the snow, we stay side by side, usually on the right side. So, who stepped out of the norm? Must be a dog. They don't worry about which side they're on, how cold it is, they just always love going for a walk. When our dogs were still alive, we had to spell w-a-l-k if we were only thinking about going out. If they heard the word, they were ready.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Way Too Chilly

6" x 8" oil on masonite
$100. 00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

This is from a photo at the end of my early morning walk last week. While my feet stayed warm, my legs were really cold. My jeans were starting to freeze and stiffen. I should have taken the time to put on long underwear. I was too eager to get out. Impatience is not a virtue.
I layered the snow colors in this piece and really like the way the darker snow peeks through. It's hard to believe I just took this photo and just did this painting. It's 67 degrees out today!!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Fresh Snow


6" x 6" oil on canvas panel
$100.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

Today is really warm: in the high 50's. I should have gone outside to paint, but instead we went for a walk. Last week we had a very cold spell: 10 degrees and snow. I did not paint outside that day, but did go for a quick walk in the morning to take some pictures of the snow for reference later. My husband gave me snow sneakers from LL Bean for Christmas. They're good in really cold weather. They're a combination of hiking boot and sneaker but extra thermal. They look like the little velcro hiking boots our son had when he was 5. But, my feet were not cold at all! This is in the park right next to our house.

I've been looking at the colors other artists use for snow. Some seem to use cobalt, some thalo, some more violet. As with all paintings, it's how we see the light on an object, in this case how we see the light on the snow. And, different geographic locations have different altitudes which have different amounts of sunlight.

Monday, February 2, 2009

20 Minute Figures


9" x 12" oil on canvas
The last hour and a half of the Cottonwood figure session was spent on 20 minute gestures. With these I started with proportion marks, blocked in the darks, wiped out the lights, added a little more, and 20 minutes was up. I kept only these 2 and wiped out/painted over the others. It's good to push ourselves and work outside our comfort zone.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

5 Minute Figures


9" x 12"
oil on canvas
Again, these are from yesterday's figure session at Cottonwood Artist's School. After about 45 minutes of 2 minute gestures, we went to 5 minute sessions. These allowed me a little more time to think; but, not much. I wiped out all but these. The point really wasn't to get finished pieces, just practice.
To quote again from Bayles and Orland in Art & Fear "The function of the overwhelming majority of your artwork is simply to teach you how to make the small fraction of your artwork that soars. One of the basic and difficult lessons every artist must learn is that even the failed pieces are essential." While I don't feel that these are failed pieces, I know they fall in the majority group that is just teaching me.
These are fun. There's a Thursday evening session that I might attend.