Friday, September 30, 2011

16x20 Demo-nodp

worked on a 16x20 today from yesterdays 5x7 so i thought i'd shoot some more shots as i work. i know i always love to see these step by step demo's on other painters blogs, so here we go

i put yellow ochre acrylic on the gessoed panel very thinly. then draw the shapes on with red/orange and liquin.

next i use a crappy/cheap bristle brush to scrub on the shadow shapes in cool colors, very loosely and trying to go over the line (both ways) for that blurry edge look i'm after on this big one.

here it is with all the shapes kinda close to the original study. i'll go back in and color correct each shape now that the whole canvas is covered and you can judge color better. remember that it doesnt matter a flip what the color looks like down on the mixing palette. the only thing that matters is how it looks up on the painting. so add whatever you need to get it 'more correct' by adding color into the shape. that is if its wet. if it has dried then you mix the 'more correct' color on the palette and paint it thicker, on top of the shape.

Remember-painting is a process of making each shape 'more right' in linear and logical steps.

on this large one i'm shooting for better edge treatment than i usually get when i work larger. dont seem to have that problem on smaller ones but when i do larger ones i make the edges too straight, too hard edged, and i lose that 'loose but accurate' look you hear me talk so much about. its that elusive quality, better yet, holy grail i search for on this painting journey of mine.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Topsail in September-5x7-SOLD


the sun was finally out and the clouds cooperated on todays painting. the light was beautiful around 6 when i saw this scene and my goal was to continue to make a brushstroke, and leave it alone.

i cant believe it. this is post #991. that means in 9 more posts, i will have posted on my blog 1000 times. that's huge!

so to celebrate the 1000 milestone, i'm going to have a giveaway on that day. all you have to do to win is be a subscriber to my blog and send me your email address on that day. i'll giveaway the painting i do that day (and throw in the shipping too) to the lucky winner (i'll pick somebody's name out of a hat). so keep watching the blog so you'll know when to email me and if youre not a subscriber already why not go ahead and look on the right sidebar of my blog (near the top), click subscribe, and follow the directions. my paintings will go right to your mailbox.

Workshop News

I'll be having a two day plein air workshop in wilmington in october (date's on right sidebar), hosted by spectrum gallery. guaranteed to take your plein air painting to the next level. $200 for both days. contact nancy at Spectrum Gallery to sign up. there are only a few slots left i heard, so dont wait till the last minute, or you'll miss the boat.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

View Down to Stage Harbor-6x8-SOLD

If you buy this one and any other that costs $99 i'll give them both to you for $150 plus $10 shipping. hit the paypal button and i'll send you a check for the difference along with the two paintings!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Just Off Duval-6x8

here's the final product on yesterdays demo. since it was late last night when i did it, this morning i got up and applied the topcoat on the underpainting. since it was dry i didnt have to finesse the green over the red on the palms, and then i color corrected all the other shapes with a big brush to keep it loose.

the last part of the process is to add some really thin and/or small shapes on the painting with a rigger brush. better known as dirty six letter word called.... ssshhhhh!.... detail.


in todays post i'll show one way i like to underpaint. there are several ways in my toolbox. i know that alot of painters have one way that they like to start a painting, but i dont think you can have too many ways to do something. variety is the spice of life.

here we go

step one- lay in the shadow shapes with something in blue or purple OR something thats close to the original OR the complement of what will be going over top of it. for example, i laid down burnt sienna type color for trees which will ultimately be green. i'll let some of the red show thru in places to JaZz the green.

step two- put yellows, pinks, and oranges on all the light shapes

step three- really important when you put down a few shapes that will have its complement over it. i put the paper towel up there and without moving it at all i rub over it with my hand. dont smear it or you'll have a mess

look at all that wet gushy paint soaked up by the paper towel. now the panel is colored, relatively dry and ready for the top coat of the 'real' color on top of it. you can let this dry and paint the real color later, but 9 times out of 10 i push whatever color is needed into whats there to make the color i need, working wet into wet.

if ive got the real colors complement down i make sure that shape is very dry and i paint the 'real' color over it waaay thicker. that way the complementary color doesnt gray down the topcoat color. leave bits of the underpainting showing for some spark. i'm always thinking about what i want peeking out from under the topcoat when deciding what to put down on the underpainting shape.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

On Commercial St.-8x10

contact me to purchase

this larger piece was done from a small study i did standing on the streets of provincetown a few months ago. this has a very small amount of values in it. its a good idea to break out objects with differing colors and not with differing values. keep the darks and mids "welded" to each other with limited values for a good solid design. you can see this concept if you squint and see how the tree on the right ties to the background shape, which melds with the shadows of the side of the buildings on the left. makes for a solid design. colors are really insignificant after that's in place.

Saturday, September 24, 2011


to purchase please contact me

another in the chef series. this one's an exercise in limited strokes of paint. put it down and dont touch it again. easier said than done. if you paint, you know how hard it is to leave a stroke alone dontcha? the more you push a stroke into the underpainting the less "sure" the stroke looks. the color de-intensifies every time you touch it. this surehandedness keeps the color pure. on this one i wanted to have a direct, painterly look.

revised Kitchen Full of Chefs-5x7

today, i had a good friend suggest that i add some details to the face and boy were they right. adding some planes to the face really looks great compared to the first one i did (see below).thanks T!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Kitchen Full of Chefs-5x7

to purchase please contact me

treating figures just as a series of correct values, and shapes is fun, and it also gets your mind off the scary fact that they are people, with hands and faces. then take the flame color and spread it around on planes that face it. voila, chefs cooking!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

At the Chopping Block-7x5

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i'm going to start on a chef series as a break from my larger landscapes. i like em 5x7 and want to play around with different aspects of figures and how i abstract the backgrounds. i want them to look somewhat like a kitchen background but in a dreamy way (without spelling it out) and complement the figure. trying to get all the emphasis on the chef.

Monday, September 19, 2011

September Reflection-5x7-SOLD

after a three or four day trip back to nc, and after taking a few days off to do some surfing, this afternoons painting was my first in a while. i always go back to swan point marina on my first painting because in my mind thats where i feel the most comfortable. a good place to clear the cobwebs that time off brings.

Carol Marine, a great still life daily painter always does some apples when she starts painting again after a long break.

you wouldnt think so, but feeling comfortable (the mental part) of painting is such a huge part of the process.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Lobster House Port Clyde Maine-6x6

another from that day painting in port clyde. this was the one i did around 3 in the afternoon. it was right down the street from my friends chris and scully's house. again.... thanks for letting me stay with you two!

i loved these little buildings on the many docks surrounding the shore in port clyde. did i tell y'all i was buying huge lobsters cooked for $6 a piece, and they had to be over a pound each! how can you stay in maine and not eat lobster whenever possible? that would be like going to italy and not eating ravioli.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Port Clyde Morning-6x8-SOLD

these maine landscapes are so much different than i'm used to. everything from the de-barked trees for pier pylons to the pointy evergreen type trees. the harbors have these tiny tree lined islands in them. so much different than cape cod, nc, or key west harbors. i loved the maine landscapes and cant wait to paint them some more.

i'll be teaching a five day workshop at the acadia workshop center on mt. desert island maine next year. cant wait!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Monhegan Ferry Harbor-6x6-SOLD

this was the five oclock painting during my marathon painting day in maine. this is where the ferry to monhegan island comes in at port clyde and is beautiful at this time of day.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Demo Pc.

Sheila's Pier-8x10


this was a piece i did as a demo of my painting process for students in a workshop in delaware. i showed them on this one how to paint all the shadow shapes in purple or blue paint very thinly early on (color correcting later) and then how to paint the light shapes more thickly and in warmer (yellow and red) colors. then i showed them how to break big shapes into smaller shapes of different colors. i stressed that not much detail is needed for the viewer to know whats what in the painting.

i am finally at home in nc after weeks on the road. it'll feel good to sleep in my own bed tonite. i will unpack and tweak all my "daily" paintings ive been doing and start posting them in the days to come. had really lousy connectivity on the road and didnt post on the blog as much as i would have liked to.

Monday, September 5, 2011

This Seasons Last Painting from Cape Cod

a commissioned 12x16 of Wychmere Harbor in Harwichport

Heading off cape tomorrow for points south. time to head home, but first to delaware for workshops during the week and one in fairfax va. saturday. if youre interested in either destination let me know. there are spots in both available and two of the three classes are plein air and one is a Paint Camp (for acrylic painters) done in a classroom. the cost is $100 and we go from 9-4.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Port Clyde Abode-6x6

started around 1 pm

purchased by a collector in eastham mass.

did a series of paintings yesterday that started at 7 am in the morning and i painted one every few hours until just around sunset. did a total of five paintings of port clyde maine and i'll post em along with the time they were started. i'm starting out of order with this one that was just purchased today. the others will be on here soon

Cape Cod Morning- 12x16

this ones in the show Cape Scapes opening saturday (tomorrow night) at 5-7. if youre in orleans stop by Rowley Gallery on hwy. 6A and say hi.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Monhegan Workshop Wrap-Up

well you think i died didnt you? well i didnt, ive been burning up the road. right now i'm in the mid-coast maine area teaching and painting and the cell/wi-fi coverage is really spotty ( and at times non-existant). well here's what ive been up to.

i drove up from cape cod on saturday just in time to get to maine in front of hurricane irene. didnt do a whole lot here but blow and cause big waves, and then we lost power for about 14 hours. but Monday ( the first of a three day workshop) thru Thursday was sunny and gorgeous. i fell in love with the maine coast. i know, i say that about every coast dont i? but its phenomenal and there are paintings everywhere. we painted in port clyde for two days and then i took the class to monhegan island on the third day. monhegan is one of the most visited and painted islands by artists anywhere. the rugged landscape and gritty little fish houses are backdropped with Manana island on one side and huge sheer cliffs down to the atlantic on the other side of the island. i saw a painting everytime i turned around. the six i had in the class did three paintings a piece that day and i could see they were listening to my advice to edit,edit, edit. move the brush very fast and make solid and rapid decisions. this is how you paint plein air fast and loose. it was a great day on monhegan and the captain of the ferry took us past the atlantic ocean side of the island with its majestic craggy 80 foot tall cliffs. it was breathtaking.
i'm planning another workshop there for sure. whether its a day or a week i'm not sure yet. you could paint for a month over there and not get bored!

note: i'd like to thank my friend chris (and scully) moses for their graciousness in letting me stay with them and being the tour guide of sorts for the port clyde/monhegan extravaganza. thanks chris!