Saturday, December 29, 2012

SOLD-Sheila's Side Yard-1229A-8x10

below is a glimpse into how i'm thinking in the initial 10 minutes of the block-in. i'm very concerned where the darkest areas of the painting will be and i get em in dark quick (in this case differing shades of alizarin crimson)

if youve ever taken one of my workshops you know how long i spend stressing value. and for good reason. most of the problems i'm dealing with in these classes are value problems.
look at how the painting "works" after i changed it into shades of sepia with my photo editor. i always say if it doesnt work in black and white its not gonna work in color either. if i could only say one sentence about anything it would be this- see how everything that gets sun is lighter than whats in the shadow. as you painters out there know, thats simple in theory but difficult in the real world struggle of making a decent painting.
note: my posts may get more sporadic while i pack up everything to go to key west and get settled in. but i'll post as often as i'm able. once i settled in down there i'll be doing tons of 6x8's. if anyone's interested in pre-ordering something from my upcoming series of palm trees and conch houses, just let me know so i can get you on the list. if you just started watching my blog go to the right sidebar and hit previous years the months of december-april and you'll see what i do.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Next to the Lift-1228A-8x10

a boat in the state of repair. thing is this things been sitting in about the same condition (and spot) for the last several years. funny that in all those years i havent painted this motif before (tho i have painted the boat). today the light hitting the cabin area was gorgeous! so here it is
this shows that you can paint around where you are everyday for years and never run out of things to paint. Henry Hensche said "anything with light on it is beautiful". how true!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

SOLD-Quiet Resting Spot-1227A-18x24

went back today to finish the painting i started with Guy the other day. that day a high milky deck of clouds formed just after i got the drawing done on this medium sized painting. not good for getting color notes down, but i just kept putting in big shapes in the somewhat approximate color for a few hours. then i came back today on a nice clear sunny day and put the actual colors i was seeing over the block-in. i also used very large raggedy brushes and that helped me achieve my goal of keeping it loose and painterly, the holy grail for my larger work.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

SOLD-Out in the Country-6x8

the light was silvery and pretty today so off i headed with my new pared down plein air kit. i ditched the big backpack and filled a small satchel with ONLY the essentials. doing this in preparation for my key west bicycle setup i'll be using daily soon.
was painting in a small town the other day and a fellow brother of the brush named guy jackson visiting from houston saw me and introduced himself. we knew all the same online painters and he had studied with many of the cape school teachers i know of, like camille prezwodek and susan sarback. we painted together in one of my favorite haunts (picture above) the next day, and had a great time. thats one of the cool things about this plein air painting gig. you meet the nicest folks.
he said when he first saw me and my suv full of painting junk that i was either a painter or homeless. ive heard that more times than i can count!

hope youre having a great holiday season and i wanted to thank you all for following my blog, going to my galleries and workshops, buying my dvd's, and last but not least, buying and viewing my artwork! without you, i couldnt do what i love for a living. thank you!

Friday, December 21, 2012

SOLD-Spanning Sides-6x11

second one from the parking deck. loved the reflections in the water and the color harmonies. i'm striving to keep a chunky look to my shapes without a bunch of "wispy" strokes. the water really looks watery dont you think? wow, i need to remember how i did that :D
i was asked how i did my reflections in the painting i did a few posts ago
so here are the bullet points-
  • put a slightly lighter shape all over the shape of the reflection
  • make it warmer and lighter than the water, and keep it grayed down
  • as you get closer and closer to the source of the light thats making the reflection, add lighter and lighter zones
  • add yellow, pink, or orange paint "spots" that are almost 90% white, right at the end
  • be sure the reflection is the lightest shape in the whole painting or it wont read as sparkly

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Downtown Shadows-5x7

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yesterday was gorgeous. temps in the middle sixties so i grabbed the plein air gear and headed to a downtown wilmington parking deck roof. as the sun was going low this cool shadow showed up on the white building on 2nd street.
i went crazy!hurry hurry get it drawn before its gone. as the painters out there know, winter sun goes down twice as fast as normally (especially this close to the winter solstice). in a few weeks the sun will start staying out about a minute longer every day. of course where i'm headed (soon) the sun wont set as soon as here because its closer to the equator. just keep thinking of reasons i love that place!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Waterfront Shimmer-22x28

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this one came together easily. some work out that way and others are a struggle and battle from start to finish. i will say that i did a value study of it first and had a great plein air study to work from (as a color study) so that might have had a lot to do with it. that doesnt mean you wont struggle just because you did that, but it has to influence the number somewhat, right?
i love the shimmer and was able to keep that the reason for the painting even tho' there were plenty of ways to get waylayed from that mission.
this is swansboro nc for those that like to know such things

Saturday, December 15, 2012

In Progress-Finding my BIg Style-22x28

just started another 22x28 and thought i'd take you along for the ride. this first shot is the block-in using my bastardized version of the cape school technique. the orange you see all over is the original wash color. then i put the darks in with alizarin crimson and the light lights with yellow (and in the water, some white) i try real hard to leave white out of my underpainting colors because it tends to lock down the painting too early. it also starts to cool and gray shapes. i want the opposite to happen.

further along in the process you can see where i'm putting saturated color over the underpainting. i'm using very large brushes (2" down to 3/4") i'm correcting the initial drawing. also very cognizant of whats in the light and whats in shadow and reflecting this in the differences between their respective values .this gives you the structure for the painting. as you can see, an underpainting with the right values and shapes will nearly look finished in an image on the computer (or digital pic) or when i stand back a distance. if it doesnt read well from 12 feet away you better stop and regroup and work on that before you even think about taking out smaller brushes

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

SOLD-Big House Little House-8x8


this is the deal of the month! an 8x8 for a 6x8 price! they dont last long on here so hit Buy Now in a hurry.
everybody in my blogosphere thinks ive bugged out to key west early because of all the tropical subject matter here lately.nope not gone yet but definately keeps me warm on these cold dreary days.
i like that ive learned to make a shape warm and light but keep it in the shadow family. i know small thing to get excited about but what can i say!
if you'd like private lessons when i'm in key west jan-april drop me an email.

Friday, December 7, 2012

SOLD-Bone Island Shadows-8x10

heres the block in on one of my newest paintings. i really really like it like this, but i'd be accused of not working on it long enough! i love the simplicity of the shapes and pure color. two lessons here-
1. things dont have to have a lot of detail to be recognizable. adding just a bit of detail is all thats needed to finish it out and keep the spontaneous, edited look.
2. color dulls every time you touch it, so put it on and leave it alone!

Bone Island Shadows-8x10
the finished piece with some more work done ie. a few smaller shapes in just the right places (oh yeah, called detail)
email me for availability and price

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

SOLD-Sleepy Atlantic-16x20

this one was a change in MO for me. i started this 16x20 plein air several months ago on a trip to atlantic nc, with my painting cohort jimmy womble. it sat around till after i got back from the cape and i knew i wanted to give it more work. more subtlety and color. so i wiped liquin on it and started working in the shapes with more variety of stroke and color.
i think ive always had this slap dash mentality to my small studies. i like to do it, finish and get on to the next one. that fits my personality. but here lately i'm going larger and that requires a different mentality completely, so i'm retooling the MO to fit the job at hand. big is good, small is good.
gotta be open to change and still work with what works for you as a painter.