Monday, November 30, 2015

Colors At The End Of The Day

Colors At The End Of The Day   40" x 30" oil

I finished this one today and the size did have me taking extra time and stepping back quite a lot for the long view. While I'd used this shot before, this time I played much more with a kind of shimmering color effect with a lot of broken color strokes. I am posting some of those details shots as well. It is already sold, but it can be seen on my website.

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Monday, November 16, 2015

Lost In Blue

    Lost In Blue                       oil on linen                        8" x 10"
Yesterday, I continued to mull over the band of light that I wanted to add to the trees in my last post. And, after Julie Ford Oliver's energetic comment "go for it!" there was no holding back. I posted the adjustment in my last post and on my website.

Today, I worked with a particularly simple value scheme. The dark masses I kept in the 6,7 range but the lights are all in the 2,3 range for a lot of contrast.

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Saturday, November 14, 2015

River Gold

     River Gold                12" x 18"                oil on linen panel

This is a great stand of Cottonwood trees along the Boise River as it passes through Eagle. I am quite sure I haven't done it justice but the story I wanted to tell was simply about this beautiful gold band of color against blue sky. I painted just a suggestion of a few birds for some motion though you probably can't see them unless you take in the larger view. 

I would like to try another view of this and perhaps have a more distinct band of lighting in the tops of the trees. It lends itself to many interpretations, so how can a painter go wrong? 

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Sunday, November 8, 2015

Golden - fall color, how time flies!

     Golden                    oil              24" x 18"

This is a painting I actually started last fall. But I'd gotten lost in all the wonderful color of the entire forest and the story I wanted to tell got lost as well. So, I put it away and it wasn't until it was unearthed recently that I saw a clear path. The whole idea was to say something about this wonderful bright light in the forest, all on it's own. 
I mixed glazes using Gamblin Solvent Free Gel with some of the shadow colors that were grayed down. I then painted all the muddled middle values that confused the whole composition and toned them way down. I'm much happier now with this single statement of color and subject!
This was a definite case about less being more!

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Friday, October 30, 2015

Backyard Color

Backyard Color             oil               12" x 9"
Today I did work with more fall color. I've noticed on this tree, which is in our backyard, that as the leaves change, so do other parts of the trunk. This one gets a deep rich red color and the texture of the peeling bark gives it a lot of interest. There were more of the yellow masses of leaves, but I thought for focus, I would just keep it to a few.

 Have a Happy & Colorful Halloween!

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Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Fall On The River

    Fall On The River                    12" x 16"             oil on panel

I worked on a light gray gessoed surface today which I haven't done for quite a while. I liked the way the warm colors came forward right away and the darks were more immediate to achieve. I only have a hint of fall color in this one, but I'm planning for more along that line soon.

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Sunday, October 18, 2015

For The Birds

For The Birds          16" x 12"       oil on panel

I am so thankful for all my collectors, but after eight commissions, I am looking forward to painting for myself in the next few weeks. This is from our friend's garden. They have created a true oasis in their perfect backyard space. Their hard work has paid off beautifully with color and fun artistic corners everywhere. As always, the sunflowers caught my eye. And, Alison let me know that, while they weren't a big challenge to grow, they always plant them "for the birds" which I thought was a perfect title. 

I'll need to mull this one over for awhile and possibly knock down some of the brushwork. So, though it's currently not for sale, you can see the Larger View On My Website.

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Saturday, October 3, 2015

Big Island Cove

Big Island Cove                  10" x 10"            oil 

The 'big island' of Hawaii is the scene for another beachy painting. The soft greens of these lush mountains came into view as we drove around a bend in the road. While the photo I used is from a few years back, I remember the scene well. I debated whether to put in the figures on the beach, but  added them for scale and just the tiniest sparks of contrasting color.
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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Beach Walking

Beach Walking                10" x 8"         oil

This one is from the beach in Oceanside, Ca. This kid ran, walked and stomped up and down the sand like he owned it! He seemed to thoroughly enjoy a great escape into a world of his own making, 

 Once again, I used a limited palette, the same warm variety as in my last post. The harmony created is so helpful in all stages of a painting

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Monday, September 21, 2015

Coral Bouquet

Coral Bouquet                      8" x 10"                  oil on linen

Life gets so crazy busy sometimes and I find myself neglecting my blog, which is frustrating but I know is a familiar lament for many of us from time to time. I am painting, for some commissioned work and also busy with a bit of travel and family obligations. 

Today though, I took a second look at a painting that I was never quite happy with. The color was lifeless and I couldn't see the resolution. When I am in a bind like that, it helps me to use a limited palette to bring cohesion back to the work. I used cad. lemon, cad yellow dark, cad. red light, alizarin crimson,ultramarine blue and white. Then, I just concentrated on warm and cool  'pieces' of color to create interest. Much better!
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Saturday, September 5, 2015

Evening Sky

Evening Sky                        oil on linen                         9" x 9"
Got my head back into a little color today and painted this simple evening sky and water landscape.

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Sunday, August 23, 2015

Changing Flies

Changing Flies  oil   24" x 12"

Changing Flies    - detail

I've been working with commissions and other projects for awhile but did get time for this enlargement of a smaller work that has long since sold. I always enjoy working with water reflections and this different format. This one is on a deep edge canvas with the painting extending onto the edges.
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Tuesday, July 28, 2015


     Biscotti                                   oil on linen                     9" x 9"

Today another still life, but this one from a photo of about a week ago at a local place. Yesterday's post "Flow Blue With Pitcher" was painted from life, Next time I do so, I will try to remember to take a picture before I take it apart!

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Monday, July 27, 2015

Flow Blue With Pitcher

Flow Blue With Pitcher                 12" x 16"                      oil

I had time to work with a still life today. This is a set up using several pieces that were my Mom's. She loved deep blues, and pinks, and gold tones and .... ok, she just loved color!  I'm sure that's where I get my own love of color. The name  'flow blue' is from the blue glaze that blurred or 'flowed' during the firing process. It's lovely and I along with my sisters have several pieces from her collection
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Sunday, July 19, 2015

Basque Dancer II

    Basque Dancer II   18" x 14"  oil

Basque Dancer II  - detail
I finally had a chance to finish this painting today. I worked with blending some edges, and using more opaque paint in the build up around the face and background. It's always interesting to come back to a work after some time. Every time I walked into my studio for the last few weeks, I'd think a little about how to resolve certain areas and finish. By the time I sat down today, it was mapped out in my head pretty well. It worked for this one anyway!

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Thursday, July 16, 2015

Cattle Shadows

Cattle Shadows                          8" x 10"                              oil

Still have the Bighorn river on my mind with these cattle at the river's edge. They were no doubt seeking a little  relief from the hot day and what feels better than wading to cool off the tootsies?

 I blocked in all the shadow areas in a thin mix of pink and coral tones, then drew the shapes and worked with thicker paint right over it all. I used walnut oil on this one, to loosen up the paint a bit. I just put a little puddle on the corner of my palette and dip into it periodically. It's best when I don't use too much, It can get a little too slippery and  does increase drying time otherwise. On the other hand, I like the consistency which is slightly thicker than OMS, but not sticky. 

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Sunday, July 12, 2015

Trio - Bighorn Cottonwoods

   Trio                               oil on linen panel                     8" x 10"  

I'm always attracted to the wonderful variety of shapes in Cottonwood trees, especially old ones like this stand I saw along the Bighorn river. It reminds me that I have not taken advantage of painting along the many beautiful areas along the Boise river since we've been here. It's banks are filled with old growth and beautiful pathways. What is it about getting away that opens ones eyes? 

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Saturday, July 11, 2015

Horn's Pond - Northern Woodlands magazine

Horn's Pond                         9" x 12"                       oil on linen

Here's one that a little different. I was contacted last week by Northern Woodlands magazine in Vermont, to do an illustration for a short essay. It's  about two friends going fly fishing and their experience and enjoyment of the day and surroundings. It will publish in September, and the design will use a cropped version. They were great to work with and I look forward to seeing it.

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Thursday, July 9, 2015

Ready To Roll - hay bales, Montana

Ready To Roll                       oil on linen                 8" x 10"
So what else did we see in Montana? Field after field of hay bales under blue skies and quite a green landscape. We had two evenings of rain during the time we were there and it provided wonderful relief from the hot days. I always like the patterns of the mowed hay. It provides great line that helps you point toward and away from various elements. In this case, I used the tilt of the hillside to give it some interest as well.

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Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Off The Range - fly fishers and cowboys

Off The Range                      10.5" x 10.5"                  oil on linen
We just returned from a week in Montana, where we saw lots of cowboys, fly fishers and also several cowboy fly fishers. Here's one taking a day off from ranch duties to bring one in on the Big Horn river.  I look forward to catching up with other artist blogs and seeing what everyone is up to in the world of painting and creating. 

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