Friday, February 29, 2008

Across from Nonna's-12x9-oil on c.b.

At Pea Island Gallery

Well i'm in Delray Florida. we drove 12 hours all night with no sleep. got to the motel about 9 and slept a few hours then woke up and did this one a block off the beach. I could paint here a week if we werent going to key west. this place is beautiful and a painters paradise. everywhere i looked i saw something i wanted to paint. tomorrows image should be from key west if all goes well. took the photo of this one from the motel lamp and all the colors are washed out. specifically wanted to paint the whole painting with a large (3/4") brush. this kept is pretty loose and detail-less. just big shapes. tune in tomorrow for one from the farthest point south on the east coast.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Packing for Key West

Pleasant Day- 9x12-0il on c.b.
contact me if you like this one
$240 unframed

Getting ready for the Key West trip today and finishing off a couple of errands today. i'm super distracted so didnt feel motivated to do a painting today so i posted this one from last summer. want to have everything i need in florida so made lists and checked em twice. this is not painting related but anyone who sells art for a living knows that theres a lot more to the biz than just painting all day. i spent half a day unpacking four boxes of frames taking off all the packing stuff, storing that packing stuff, and delivering paintings to a couple of galleries before i leave.
TIP- save that packing stuff. it costs the frame distributor tons of money and it makes carrying your work around without beating it all to *&*(&(*. they ship every frame with heavy duty boxes good for hauling lots of paintings around. cut up the cardboard and stick it in between your frames when your storing art in frames in your studio etc. . the big plastic bags make good trash bags for small trash cans like the ones i have in my studio. i dont throw away anything without seeing if it has another life serving some other purpose. i'm not a recycling nut. just a cheapskate. i even reuse the used painted up paper towels i bring back to the studio out of the plein air field. they are great for wiping paint off my palette in the studio without having to waste good paper towels, which i use to wipe the paint out of my brush with. is that crazy or what. the dried up paint in the paper towel is just the right hardness to pick up dirty paint film on the glass of my palette.
thats being frugal isnt it? Oh well they say when the birds fly over my studio they say "cheap, cheap!"

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Beach Cul-de-Sac 1- 18x24- oil on canvas

At Carolina Creation Gallery
I really like this image as you can see. i've painted it several times in the last few months. the 16x20 sold right away so.... heres the 18x24 . its my wifes favorite and she really doesnt say that much. it looks so dreamy and i'd love to live in the cottage on the right of the painting wouldnt you?
i first started it with magenta washes in acrylic and then i laid in a soupy oil and medium wash in the realistic colors. once this is done you can see what you've got and the light key is established. i feel more and more comfortable working bigger (for me anything over 12x16 is huge) now that i'm using a stand oil and thinner medium to make the shapes soupier. then i work drier and drier because the shape itself has some slide to it. keeping it loose is harder than it would seem. keeping edges soft takes work. i only have one area of the painting that has hard edges, and the most contrast, where the cottage roof area meets the palm tree and clouds. this is where i want you to keep coming back to (center of interest)
ive tried hard to keep everything else blurry just like the human eye sees. just one thing is sharp and everything else is in the periphery vision and fuzzy. i can thank edgar payne, an early 1900 california impressionist, for this great epiphany. i saw it when i was reading his book "Landscape Painting". thanks edgar!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Persimmon Abstract- 6x8- oil on c.b.

Contact me if you like this one.

i'm getting more and more confident with these little paintings. put it down and leave it. its so hard to do. you want to stroke over it and stroke over it. that dulls the colors, keeps it from looking bravely done. i have to do a hundred of these still lifes, imagine what the hundreth one would look like compared to the first one i ever did on this blog. gotta get em in before the spring gets here and i want to paint outside all day.

getting ready to go to key west to paint and cannot wait. 85 degree days, flipflops, shorts, and painting turquoise water wooohoooo! i'll post down there (hopefully) everyday too.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Golden Roof-8x6- oil on c.b.

If you like this one contact me.

This late afternoon scene is one i saw a few weeks back coming thru little washington, nc on my trip back from nags head. the roof was glowing orange and yellow-ochre gold.

little washington is a beautiful place to plein air paint. old historic homes from the turn of the century in idyllic portside neighborhoods and the riverfront with boats a few hundred yards away.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Toms-10x8-oil on c.b.

Available at City Art Gallery
I have a 9x12 just like this one available at Vision Gallery also
Opened a bag of chips, munched on a few then started painting. i know a guy that wont eat whatever he paints. its just something he says he wont do. i'm the opposite. i cant wait to eat what i paint!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

A few plein air tips i discovered today

Available at Tidewater Gallery
I had a plein air commission to do today of the wilmington waterfront. i found a way to down to the water on the other side of the river (almost under the 421 bridge) to paint. only problem was that the area down there is very soggy, swampy and some parts of wilmington interestingly have quick sand. i have seen warning signs. is that crazy or what?

so to keep my feet dry, and hopefully warm, i had the idea to wrap my feet in plastic grocery bags in case! well it worked great and my feet actually got very hot in the bags. after discovering this i'm going to keep bags in my painting backpack for cold days and my feet are freezing. they take up no room in the backpack and you can use them to carry you trash off from the paint site too.

the other thing i found today was that if stuff gets in the wet paint like marsh grass seeds etc. you can go to a gas station and blow it all off the painting with an air hose without messing up the paint. i was trooping around in the tall marsh grass coming out after painting and all kinds of stuff got in the wet paint. no way to get all that out without messing up something. the pressurized air worked great!

Today i posted my soup bowl and his co-worker spoon. they both kept me warm and full this winter. hope you like em.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

We're Not Worthy- 8x10-oil on c.b.

Just looked to me like the little ones were saying to the big one "we're not worthy"
what can i say you have to come up with titles to these things and yes i am going mad being cooped up in the studio for months. waiting to get outside again when it warms up. all this still life will definately help me when i do.
remember the tip i gave awhile back where you shoot your painting with a digital then desaturate the color on photoshop to see just black and white values. i did this when i first finished this piece and realized looking at the black and white that the shadows werent dark enough. so i went back and fixed them. now i really like this piece. you know how sometimes something doesnt look right with your painting but you dont know what it is. shoot it digitally and change to black and white. it'll jump off the page at you! it sure saved this one.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

So Shy- 10x8- oil on c.b.

At Pea Island Gallery
i picked that title because it looks like the one radish is over in the corner and the other two are talking about her. they seem so friendly all cozied up next to each other.

Didnt pull an all niter, but did stay up late as expected.
when i dont paint during the day i feel like i didnt accomplish anything even tho i did work on the business end of things all day. most people think us painters just breeze around all day and when we feel inspired we paint.
NOT! paintings a job just like everything else. and the marketing takes up more hours per week than painting ever will. which is cool because i wouldnt want to paint all day every day or just do biz stuff all day every day.
i try my hardest to paint everyday if its only a small piece. thats when i'm the happiest.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Caddy- 12x16-oil on gallery wrap canvas

Let me know if you want this one
$340- needs no frame+ shipping+tax for nc residents
loved this old caddy sitting in the guys yard like he just parked it there a few minutes ago but the grass growing around it told the real story. it had been years if not decades since she has seen the highway.
the piece has a nostalgic, retro feel to it with the old non-descript house in the shadows.
didnt paint today during the day. i feel a midnite oil session coming on tonite tho. just bought a persimmon, pear and some radishes to paint. so i'll probably be up till 2 or 3 doing the nightowl shift. painting then is meditative because everybody else in the world is asleep and all you hear is the occassional car going by on Hwy 17. carole marine is getting me jazzed with her still lifes of fruit. i look at them night and day so if my stuff looks too much like hers thats why. i'll develope my own distinctive look after a while. i'm not trying to rip her off, just absolutely love the abstract nature and her bright warm underpaintings. i do this somewhat in landscape painting but i want to start nailing it in still life work as well. see below .....Clairvoyant Medium to see what i mean..

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Clairvoyant Medium-16x12-oil on c.b.

Available at Tidewater Gallery

Here's a fun one. played around with using oil paint washes for the under painting instead of my usual acrylic. if you double click on the photo it should get bigger and you can see the bits of orange, red and ochre peeking out. i dont think i get as much peeking out as i do when i use acrylic. but... whatever (as the kids say nowadays)
has a juicy, loosey, feel to it.

its off to a coastal gallery so we'll see how this subject matter plays there.
go buy it!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Sittin' One Out-12x16-oil on c.b.

Contact Vision Gallery if you like this one.

The Rylee Fisher- 12x12- oil on c.b.

Contact Vision Gallery if you like this one.

Train Car Shapes-9x12-oil on c.b.

Contact me if you like this one

$240 + shipping+tax to nc residents
This was done in a deserted section of the town but the longer i was there painting the more attention and people i attracted. some of them looked a little sketchy but they checked me out (as a target i'm thinking) from afar. must have determined from the way i was dressed (old painted up clothes) and the crappy truck i drive that i'd probably fight hard to keep what little i had! man are they wrong. i'd give it up without a second thought. i can get another 93 toyota for a few dollars! heeheee.
this has a loose shape style to it thats a stretch for me. i teeter back and forth day to day seems like. one day tighter, one day looser and more abstract. the process is the same for the more abstract treatment. you just break the big shapes into smaller and smaller shapes. more so than you would do with huge shapes just left alone like alot of what i do. that keeps it fun playing this way and that. hope you like it.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

My Painting Clairvoyant(Medium)-10x8-oil on c.b.

Contact Vision Gallery if you like this one

Had to have that title for the painting!
was looking for something to set up for a still life and looked down and saw this. stuck the brush in it to lead the eye up to the jar and let the glob of white paint lead to the smears which lead to the brush, that leads to the jar.
i use a thick piece of glass for my palette and thats why theres shadows to the left and under the paint piles and smears. you gotta see this one in person to appreciate the subtle colors and gradations.
sometimes, once in a while i like one a lot. this is one of them.hope it made you want to go paint!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The Salt Pile- 8x10- oil on c.b.

Contact Vision Gallery if you like this one

This studio version of a plein air study came out identical to its 6x8 predecessor, which is what i've been trying for for over a year. to do studio things with the plein air feel i have to set time limits on how long i can work on it. this keeps that intuitive side of the brain thinking hurry hurry, boil down the essence of the thing.... dont fuss with details. thats what i like about this piece. the details are missing but just suggested.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Studio painting today

Available at Tidewater Gallery

Date with a Match- 16x20-oil on canvas

Here's the studio version i did today from the plein air study below. i tried very hard to keep it super loose like the study. i think i was successful in that? especially liked the way the tin looks rolled up on the porch that fell down on the front of the old house. like the warmth contrasted with the backlit purple-ish shadows.
would have loved to see this house in its heyday. i bet it was very grand in the early part of last century. i can see some ladies in big billowy dresses sitting on the porch in the evening sipping sweet tea or lemonade watching horse and buggies coming down a dirt road across the nearby tobacco and cotton fields.
one question tho?
how on earth did they ever get by without laptops?

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Date with a Match- 6x8- oil on c.b.


This is a house in the boonies of Onslow county built around the turn of the century. i loved the backlit lighting effect with most of the house in shadow. someone came out while i was painting and gave me the history. she said the family had decided to burn it in the spring. the volunteer fire dept. will train by torching it. i once painted a barn i liked to rest near on my trip to greenville when i was sign painting. a week after painting it the owners knocked it down with a bulldozer and then they burned it one night. that painting had special sentimental value because i knew it no longer exists. and after painting plein air for several years now i can say that about a half dozen things i painted and are now gone. i guess because i like to paint things right on the edge of extinction for some reason. someone old appreciating something else thats old *)
think of the events in history the family living in this house experienced. pearl harbor, wwI, the roaring 20's, the invention of the automobile and planes. Wow... its mind boggling.

Another acrylic finds a nice home


Southern Comfort VII

16x12 acrylic on c.b.

Back home after a very successful workshop. glad to not be behind the steering wheel for a few days. this was a demo i did at my studio awhile back showing how to paint quickly (30 minutes to be exact) and expressively/colorfully. Part of the cleaning out the studio kick i'm on. many have sold and many still need a nice home. keep an eye out for a bargain. when you paint at least one a day (and sometimes two) they start stacking up all over the place after a while and gotta go!

contact me if you see anything you like.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Marina Afternoon(Englehard)- 12x16- oil on c.b.

At City Art Gallery

This is one done yesterday driving home from Nags Head. found a sweet little fishing village to paint that i have passed by for years and sworn to myself i'd paint one day. well i had a beautiful day and some time to paint so heres what i ended up with. there are tons more paintings there and i cant wait to go again. maybe when i go to teach at kill devil hill coop in a few months....

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Green Glass

contact me if youre interested in this one. email is in the righthand sidebar. first bid of $30 gets this one.
Today was a travel day coming back from OBX but i still managed a 12x16 in a cool place called Engelhard. its a little fishing village with tons of working boats etc.
will take a digital of the painting tomorrow and post. then i did a small painting in little washington.
will feel good to sleep in my bed tonite.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Windy Repose- 30x24-oil on gallerywrap canvas

Cleaning out the Studio Sale
an acrylic from early 2007.
First to bid $150 wins. at this price dont be slow! contact me by email if you want it. price does not include shipping.
Last day teaching, and i'm dying to get outside and paint tomorrow. been inside toooooo long.
plans are in place for painting trip to key west florida week after next. cant wait. aqua blue water, palms and conch houses? whats not to like about painting there?
i will be keeping the blog going there too. this things addicting because after doing it everyday for a few months i cant imagine not doing it.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

The "Ahhhaa" Factor

No paintings to post today because its the 2nd of a two day workshop, teaching in Manteo.

I love the Ahhhhaa Factor. what is it? its when you (or someone else) gets something for the very first time-- it makes sense! WOW!
maybe you've heard it before, or a thousand times, but this time.....Ahhhaa i get it!
i love when it happens to me and i love it in the workshop envirionment when after a day or two goes by where i'm teaching, when you hear from across the room "Ahhhhaaa i just got it! WOW i see now what youre talking about!". it might be how to get that elusive color of whatever, or how to draw buildings with the right perspective, anything like that. i love when i have one of those moments too! theyre momentous to no one but the person who's getting it. arent they wonderful tho when youre on either end of an "Ahhhaa" moment?

Monday, February 4, 2008

Hello from Nags Head

SOLD- going to the Jersey shore

Manns Harbor Landing
6x6 oil on c.b.

Class went real well today. we talked about all the stuff i usually rant on about here, shapes, values, dominant things and subordinate things. We painted on b&w photos and made up our own colors. all in an attempt to train the eye to see the differences in value. how even a half a shade difference in tone can throw the whole image out of whack.

i know ----i'm very repetitive with the basics!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

On the Road

I'm on the road to nags head today to do a three day workshop. was beautiful weather today so i stopped in nearby mann's harbor and did a small 6x6 but didnt get the digital pic of it so i cant post it tonite. i'll get it on here tomorrow.

was asked by the client to pull the images of the commissions until she recieves them in hand next week. i accidently erased what i had written for that entry so i'll enter it back on todays entry and post the image when i get the go ahead. it was called

Twilite Cartwheel-24x30-oil on canvas

Painted the underpainting plein air (outside) and finished this one up in the studio where i used a photo of the tower (i took) of this fleeting lighting effect the day i was blocking-in the painting plein air. the sun lit up the tower as the sun slipped low in the sky and the lower part of the buildings went into shadow. this lighting effect on lasts 5-10 minutes at the most, so memory and a photo were all i needed in the studio.
have never painted anyone upside down before. this was a first.

really concentrating on energetic brushwork layering the natural color over its compliment. these two techniques make for a loose and colorful rendering of a tight architectural subject. keeps it "painterly". this is what the client specifically asked for. had so much fun painting this one and i think it shows.
found some linseed oil and made carole marine's medium potion and i loved it. it makes the paint spreadable and slippery which makes it go on easier, makes a little paint go on like a ton of paint and it kept its opacity. my way of working is laying some on transparently in layers and in other areas working very opaquely so this stuff is magic. try it, you'll love it. its somewhere in my previous post from yesterday or day before.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Twilite Stroll-30x24- oil on canvas

Not for sale

commission piece

The last of four completed. on this one i wanted to stress the drama of yellowy-orange warm light emitting from the buildings surrounded by magenta-violet dusk. the sky throws cool purple light onto everything, and the glow from the building and some yellowish light coming from the viewers right shoulder changes the temperture from warm to cool- right to left.

can you tell i'm obsessing about this temperature thing!

used a huge palette knife to lay in the foliage over the purple-violet acrylic underpainting and was happy with the way it leaves it haphazard. the brush always leaves it too uniform.

hope y'all like these studio paintings. i'm trying to work with the owner of a vineyard on a painting for his labels. so maybe i'll be in a beautiful vineyard painting soon, instead of a studio. i dont know how people paint in them day in and day out. give me the wind, heat, cold, onlookers, and bugs anytime!

News-- i will be doing two demonstrations for Jerrys Artarama and Lukas paint. One is march 15 and the other is may 4th. they are from 1-4 pm. come check out the processes i use and maybe i can talk them into giving you free Lukas 1862 paint. the best on the market in my opinion. its buttery and very pigmented, goes a long way and the colors are brilliant on the canvas. see you there!