Thursday, October 28, 2010

Rhode Island Workshop in the Rear View Mirror

This was the second morning of the workshop with kathy weber, and it cleared up nicely. Not a bad place to spend a day at work, eh? Portsmouth R.I. is a great place and is very close to Newport and Bristol, and all have really beautiful waterfronts.
i'm in Orleans Mass. (cape cod) painting now and the opening of my show at Rowley Gallery is Saturday night and i'll do a demo on Sunday 1-3. come by and see me if youre in the neighborhood.

Monday, October 25, 2010


Here's a shot of our first class painting plein air in Tuscany a few weeks ago. what a beautiful landscape. and the light, wow! thanks for the pic, chris!
Today was the first day of the Rhode Island workshop. we talked about the importance of values in the painting process. without understanding values you can never fully understand color.
its sort of the "which came first? the chicken or the egg" argument about color and value. if you mix the right color you WILL have the right value because to have the right color you HAVE to have the right value.
next we covered drawing and its importance. if you struggle with drawing you'll always struggle with painting. your shapes have to be correct no matter how proficient you may be in the area's of mixing color, or brushwork, etc. The painting will always look amateurish if the drawing looks amateur. i'm sure youve heard me say all this before. its my mantra when i'm in teaching mode. i want to make better painters and giving folks the truth is better than trying to decieve them into thinking they'll be better painters just by taking a three day workshop. you can learn stuff but if you dont practice what you learned, it wont produce long lasting results.
the students who paint the miles and miles of canvas it takes to get better, will get better. Lots better!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Honeyspot

Left the eastern shore yesterday headed to my next gig in rhode island. rode and rode and rode after leaving at six from the maryland workshop. next thing i know i'm in conneticut and its 12:30 am and i'm wrecked. so i start looking for a motel to get a few winks for the drive to r.i. In conneticut there arent alot of billboards so you dont really know where any motels are until its too late and youve passed it. forget about turning around! so you ride 10 more miles, until you pass another one. DARN IT!
finally get to one and it's $100 for the night. i cant bring myself to spend that much for five hours of sleep, so i left there and headed down the road again, in search of cheaper digs.
the sign said The Honeyspot. what was i thinking?! i had a bad feeling when i opened the door and it smelled like a homeless shelter. a mix of sweat, Pinesol, and Curry rice. but i was tired and the price was right. $60. until i got to my room and found out they made the lobby smell good! slept on my first plastic covered pillow. had to wrap a towel around it to keep from krinkling all night. the floor was so dirty i kept my shoes on until i got on the bed. and i slept in my clothes.
and you thought i was living the life of O'Reilly traipzing around painting and teaching. This road warrior stuff isnt for the faint of heart. but i did end up on naragansett bay today painting the harbor from a cliff overlooking deep blue water with white sailboats spotted everywhere below.
so maybe i do live the life of O'Reilly after all.
Moral of this story is dont stay at places with names like The Dewdrop Inn, Bates Motel or The Honeyspot. ewwwwww!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Berlin/Ocean City Maryland Workshop

The class lines up to paint the sound view on day two. It was chilly and windy early on but not one complaint was heard. I love this crews passion for learning!

Betty's working on "chunking in" the big shapes in the right value and temperature.

This was day two of a three day workshop i'm teaching. Yesterday it rained hard all day allowing us to stay in the classroom yesterday where i could stress the importance of drawing, values, and simplifying when painting outside. its much harder to teach this when folks who arent used to painting outside are forced to deal with "all that stuff out there". all the while, they're having to process new ways of thinking and painting that i'm teaching them! it can be overwhelming coming at them, all at once on day one.

leaving here saturday for points north in Rhode Island and
Cape Cod. Wow... i'm heading into colder climes. hmmmm. i'm not used to wearing jeans and sweatshirts.

Already dreaming of wintering in the Keys with palms, warm water, and temps in the 80's. Wont be long now!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Autumn Beachscape-9x12-SOLD

One from the other morning out on the beach. it was a nice clear day with temps in the 70's. the crowds are gone and its great painting weather.

Heading to Berlin Md. tomorrow for the workshop starting Wednesday. if you'd like to sign up for it, email me.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Another Twilite Scene-SOLD

Twilite Reflections at Marina Cafe-8x8

Really do enjoy the twilite paintings. theyre very difficult in that the light is changing very rapidly. Instantaneous color and value choices and sure handed application are essential to getting it before it goes dark on you.

Upcoming events:

Ocean City (Berlin) Maryland 3 day plein air workshop Wednesday thru Friday this week.

Portsmouth Rhode Island 3 day plein air workshop. Co-teaching with Kathy Weber a fantastic painter from Providence.

My one man show of interiors, chefs, and gallery goers at Elizabeth Rowley Gallery in Orleans, Mass. on Cape Cod. the receptions on Oct. 30th.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Editing the scene

The Barbara Joe-6x8

I think the key to plein air painting is to be very selective about what you "allow to be included". You really have to think about each shape "deserving to be there". there's so much stuff out there and it doesnt help to improve the painting necessarily.

there were several areas of junk around the boat and a few extra shapes in the midground i left out when i was out there painting. then when i got it home i painted out a few more and ended up with a sweet little painting of a boat in its environment.

have to remember i'm a painter and not a photographer. the difference between a short story writer and a newspaper journalist. one weaves a tale for you. the other gives you the unpoetic blow-by-blow.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Tuscan Fields-6x8-SOLD

here's one from the italy trip. very atmospheric and luscious color harmonies.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Back from Italian Gig

Just returned from my trip teaching in Tuscany, Italy.
What a trip! The food, the beautiful landscape, and what a great workshop.
Dont know if you've traveled abroad lately but it is quite the ordeal. Then planes getting in late make you late for your connecting flight and next thing you know youre whole itinerary is shot. Oh well.....i got to see Arezzo, and Toronto (for the night) and i wasnt even supposed to.
But once i was there i found the light in tuscany to be beautiful and the atmospheric effect of the distant mountains made them the most beautiful medium blue. the fall light on the cedars, fields, and villas made you want to paint every minute. Tho the weather was somewhat uncooperative when we first got there , it cleared up nicely and made me want to paint even more once the sun did finally make its appearance.
Now to the food. All of it was fantastic. the brusciotta (like salami) the ravioli, tuscan soup, and wild boar to name a few!
I found the people very nice and tho i couldnt speak with them, they at least made an effort to understand my pantomine gesturing as i tried to communicate with them.
i'll post the paintings i did over there in a few days. was blessed to sell everything i painted to workshop participants and their spouses as mementos of their trip to one of the most beautiful places around.
Heading to Ocean City Maryland to teach in the next couple of weeks and then on to a joint workshop with Kathy Weber in Providence, Rhode Island. Then off to the Cape for my one man show of interior and chef paintings at the Elizabeth Rowley Gallery in Orleans.