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Monday, November 22, 2010
A Gift from the Heart
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Plein Air Painting with Andy Evansen
Here is some of my work I did in a week long workshop with Andy Evansen. It was so wonderful to paint plein air all day for an entire week! We even had the most perfect weather, too. Andy is such a pleasant and humble teacher. He really tried to help each of us with our struggles to paint loose. He had us work on 4x6 or 5x7 paper in gray scale to practice capturing the values. Andy works very fast and makes it seem so effortless. My favorite quote from him that I will remind myself was "just indicate...". We do not need to paint every brick etc., just indicate it is brick.
My favorite piece is the value sketch in the middle photo. I feel like it has the eurythme I always want to capture. The darks, the movement, the hint, the looseness and the freedom. I did not finish the color image below it. This was all done on site. I didn't get the darks in as dark as in the value sketch. Notice one of the value sketches at top was from one of my plein air paintings from the Cape. The bottom photo is from the last day of the workshop. We painted in the trolley barn down on McKinney St. We did White Rock Lake, Farmer's Market, the West End and Turtle Creek.
This Saturday is the BIG day. The show runs through January 3. But, I would love it if you came by to see me at the reception this Saturday:
The Dutch Art Gallery
10233 E. Northwest Hwy (corner of Ferndale)
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
Apologies for having few posts. I have been working on commissions of home portraits for the Christmas deadline. I cannot post any of those paintings until after Christmas since they are going to be given as gifts. I do want to post my work from the Andy Evansen workshop as soon as I get a chance.
Friday, October 15, 2010
This is a scene in a shopping center in Dallas. One can park their car and walk around to the various shops and restaurants here. I painted this last week in preparation for the Andy Evansen workshop I have been partipating in this week. I cannot tell you how great it is to do plein air painting with Andy. He is ovbiously a great artist, but, he is also a great teacher, too. We have been all over Dallas painting street scenes, landscape at parks, boats at White Rock Lake and today, trolleys on Mckinney St. I am very happy with my value paintings, but, the color ones are not so hot, yet. Maybe I will post next week.
Sunday, October 10, 2010
Photo of Big Tex
Yes, it is time for the Texas State Fair. This is my husband's favorite event. Although, he would never tell you that, you just know by how many times he says how great the fair is while we are there. For years I have taken pictures at the fair for paintings, but, I have never painted one, yet. When I saw the Cotton Candy stand, I was inspired. I specifically took the photo of Big Tex for everyone who does not live in Dallas. He is 52' tall, talks and makes announcements and has his picture on the cotton candy bags. Do you see the ferris wheel in the bottom of the photo? It is in my painting, too. P.S. my toddler HAD to have the beautiful cotton candy. When he tasted it, he started crying and saying, "Hair, hair, get the hair out of my mouth." I guess he will be scarred now.
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Alan Barnes Gallery
2011 Juried Exhibit
(I am in the show!)
Tuesday, October 14
5:30 - 8:30 Reception
Saturday, October 2, 2010
Grapes in the Sunlight
The photo that inspired this painting was an ad for Mexico on the back of the Conde Nast Traveler magazine. The way the sunlight was coming from the side/back creating interesting shadows and then even illuminating some of the grapes. Two other things came to mind, the Grape Escape which is a fundraiser for Heart House, coming up (my friend is chairing it, so I hear about it daily right now) and one of my favorite watercolor artist in the blogger world, David Lobenberg. He has been blogging about his vineyard experience. He paints with very clear, clean wild colors and has the best sense of humor.
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Colors of Fall
Believe it or not, the colors of fall in Dallas right now are really what you see in A Secret Garden. Inspired by a real garden I found on a walk, this is a plein air study. The blooms are a little embellished, but, it is true, the flowers are much happier now with the high 80 degree days vs. the +100 temps. The encore azaleas are blooming, as are the crepe myrtles and the roses, hibiscuses, inpatients and perennials are all happy. However, the shadows are getting much longer. I walked out in the backyard the other day and noticed I was in the shadow of the house as it stretched far into the yard.
I wanted to share that gorgeous middle photo with the plant alive with the glow of the sunlight.
Fall Bouquet is painted from a bouquet I put together for a school coffee at my house. I couldn't resist using the pumpkin branches or the bright orange and magenta colors.
Thanks to both my blog readers and my email subscribers for your comments on my posts. I love that connection!
Sunday, September 19, 2010
Art Therapy - You can still paint even if you can't see
Meet my father-in-law, Grampy. He has had Macular Degeneration for about 30 years. That means he started to lose his vision in his early 40's and can no longer do the things he once could, like drive, for example. Imagine if your vision started to go away very rapidly and you could no longer do all of the things that require eye vision. Every summer we visit my in-laws. I use to drive my father-in-law around to antique shops. He would pick up a piece and have me look at it and tell him what the writing said and I would answer his questions about an antique he was looking at. Now with the economy and increasing loss of his sight, he is not in the antique business anymore.
Every summer I always encourage Grampy to take clay sculpture classes or pottery classes so he can use his hands and creativity. It never happens. I guess because I had just done our little impromptu painting workshop with my nieces and nephews, I talked Grampy into painting right at that moment! Of course, he resisted. He said he had no talent and his painting would be ugly. I told him who cares, we will paint on a paper plate and then throw it right in the garbage so nobody sees it. I told him that we were going to paint just for the experience, not for the end result.
I myself learned so much about painting. I would ask him, do you feel how much water is on the brush? Do you feel how the brush feels on the paper with this amount of water? Can you feel how much paint is on your brush? Then he would ask me questions like, "Were is green, I want to use green. How do I make it darker? I like how that looks, what color is that? How do I make it darker?" Grampy can see through his peripheral vision, but, I don't know how well.
Here he is holding up his favorite of his three paintings. Look at that smile on his face, especially the one where he is painting. I haven't seen him smile in a long time. Grampy had some great ideas for his first time painting. He said, why can't each color have its own tray/bowl so that the colors are not so close together (talking about my paint palette). I told him that there are artists that do that and I happen to have a book of one of those artists on the table.
I hope you find this story encouraging and that you may pick up a brush and paint on a paper plate one day, too. P.s. Grampy didn't throw his paintings away. I hope Grampy keeps painting.
To find out more about Macular Degeneration or to get a free screening, visit the Retina Foundation of the Southwest.
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Stoli Doli and Friends
I have been collecting photos of ice cold beverages during the 107 temps in Dallas. I saw this jar of Stoli Doli in a bar in Cape Cod. The bartender was already working on my martini, so it was too late for me to try the Stoli Doli. I have heard it is good. Pineapple soaked in vodka. In any event, I couldn't resist taking a picture of it to paint one day. Limeade has sold so I wanted to paint another jar of sliced fruit before I missed it. I couldn't believe how strong the local color influenced me in this painting.
Saturday, September 4, 2010
DALLAS Exhibits Announcement - Mark your calendars!
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Apples, Peaches, Plums
Here is the painting that I have been working on. As I said before, it was inspired by a photo that I saw on PaperPumpkin. I saw the photo right after I had posted "Locally Grown".
I tried something new to me in this painting. I used a clear oil pastel to save some of the whites. I did not use it everywhere that you see the white because sometimes I like to go over the whites with a very light wash. Also, I wanted to be able to control soft and hard edges. The clear oil pastel is so clear that it was a little hard for me to control at first. It is an absolute great permanent resist. Some of you have noticed that my work is changing a little. I would love to hear your comments if you like or you don't like this new direction.
I have some great news, I was accepted to the Artists of Texas blog. Please visit me and other fine artists of Texas over there!
Thanks for visiting and enjoy.
Saturday, August 28, 2010
CityARTCal Artists Party
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Revisions, Memories and Friendship
Now I can tell you the inspiration for this painting. My friend who was pregnant with her third child insisted that she and I go on this 4+ hour hike up a mountain in Red River, New Mexico. It is not surprising that I would rather sit for 4 hours and paint vs. hiking up a mountain. It is embarrassing to say that I could barely keep up with her even though she was 3 months pregnant. She told me that at the top there was this glorious pond with the clearest water and giant rainbow trout. Well here it is. Although I was resistant to the hiking, my friend didn't believe me when I told her that I would indeed go swimming in the pond because I have an obsession with natural clear bodies of water. I told her to be ready with the camera and take a photo once I was in the water for evidence to all those that would not believe. The water was absolutely freezing, but, very exhilerating. I am giving this painting to her husband for his 50th birthday since he loves the mountains so much and he is taking up painting, too!
Friday, August 20, 2010
I saw these sailboats from far away. It turns out it was the local summer camp sailing. The shapes of the white triangles moving about each other against the blue water and sky was so calming. I wanted to capture this dance and I wanted to be in one of the sailboats, too!
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
WAS pretty... now?
Thanks. This is where I put down my brushes and walk away.
Sunday, August 15, 2010
Boys want to Paint, too!
How powerful an image on the computer screen can be. When my sons and nephews saw Rachel's painting (previous post) on my blog, they were thoroughly impressed and inspired! They asked, "who can see her painting? can everyone see her painting?" I told them that people from all over will see it, including my blogger friends from the other side of the world in South Africa and India and DR Congo.
They all responded with, "Can I paint, too! I want to paint, too! And can we put our paintings on the internet, too?" So we had an immediate impromptu watercolor workshop. I only had one sheet of watercolor paper left so we used paper plates to paint as our canvases. I just let them have fun with it. I did ask them to notice what happens when you have a lot of water on your brush vs. when you have very little water on you brush.
A BIG THANK YOU to everyone who commented on Rachel's post. She was so thrilled to receive comments and couldn't believe how fast they came. She asked her mom for some paints for herself!!!! And if you want to paint, try painting on a paper plate, it's just a paper plate, so it doesn't matter how it comes out. Make sure to stay tuned for my next post. It will be about a blind man painting!
Thursday, August 5, 2010
More Cape Cod Scenes
Cape Cottage is very typical of the cottages and gardens you see on Cape Cod. Some are really tiny and then others are made to look small. I saw this cottage in the morning. The picture here got a little washed out. I was most excited about the brilliant colors on the barn. I used 2 reds, an orange and a blue. In real life it looks just fantastic with these colors mingling together. By the way, I am not exaggerating the flowers. There are just multitudes of perennials in bright colors, giant blue hydrangea bushes and rows of sunflowers!
Sunday, August 1, 2010
Sunday at the Beach
In contrast to the last post of the pristine beach on Martha's Vineyard, here is a scene from a Cape Cod Beach done plein air. I always love seeing all of the beach umbrellas on the beach whether in real life or in photos, posters or cards. I have painted many beach umbrella scenes over the years. On this one, I used my artistic license more to connect the umbrellas and figures for composition sake vs. having a bunch of individual "things" spread out on the paper. This painting does capture the feel of a perfect Sunday beach day on the Cape. Crowded, lots of umbrellas, kayaks, sailboats - everyone enjoying the weather. This beach has a lot of tall foliage between the beach and the houses compared to other beaches on the Cape.
Thanks for visiting. Your comments are always appreciated!
Introducing a Young Artist, Rachel, 12 yrs. old
Days at the Beach
The painting above was inspired by a beach on Martha's Vineyard on the Atlantic Ocean side. It was one of the most pristine beaches I have seen. On this day the water was very calm with small, friendly waves. It was such a contrast compared to the day before when the roar of the ocean waves was such a loud continuous thundering with giant crashing waves. In the distance was this curve of land jetting straight out of the water. I kept imagining how I could paint this sloping land with geometric shapes and layers of transparent color.
The photo is the sun setting on the beach we are staying at in Brewster, Ma.
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Busted by the hubbie!
Monday, July 19, 2010
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
I really enjoyed painting these peaches! I have been wanting to paint peaches since last summer, but, peaches do not seem to last a day in our house. Especially local Texas peaches. They have so much peach fuzz on them and our slightly smaller, but so sweet. Whenever I see the shape of these Texas peaches I immediately remember when I was a kid and picking the peaches off of a peach "bush" in our backyard. I say a bush because the tree was there when we moved in and nobody ever seemed to do anything with it. Prune it/shape it or fertilize it. It wasn't an attractive tree/bush, but it produced a lot of peaches and we were free to pick them off and eat them without even washing them! My friend has a large peach tree here in Dallas. I will have to ask her if I can go by and take some photos of the peaches on the tree. Last summer she sent us home with a giant paper bag of peaches that my kids had the pleasure of picking.
Oh, back to the painting, I enjoyed this painting because I loved "playing" with the yellows, oranges, reds and magenta. I was inspired to paint the peaches in one of these little baskets from a drive we took to Tyler, Texas. All along the way there were stands on the side of the road selling "Locally Grown" everything. We were dropping my son off at camp so I couldn't ask if we could stop and take photos for maybe future paintings. I had one of these baskets at home so I set up my own little peach stand to paint. When I was painting (outside) every now and then I would get a whiff of the awesome fresh peach scent.
Enjoy and have a peach!
Sunday, July 11, 2010
Dented but Still Works
Well my watering can turned up with a dent right on top of it. I asked my 3 sons how did this happen and I got 3 "I don't know" answers with each one shrugging his shoulders and running off. Do I continue to paint the watering can with a dent in it in every painting? How can I buy a new one if this one still works?
In any event, I cannot complain about the perennials or the heavy rains that we have had. The flowers are just thriving. The tall pink flowers in the back are over 4 feet tall. There is a whole mess of this pink "bush" which continues up beyond the painting. It is like a wild tangle of Medusa's hair. There are so many blooms on the zinnias and they are just spilling out over the walk. The black salvia is spiking out tall and proud.
This photo has an overall blue overtone compared to the painting. The upper left corner is unpainted but in the photo it came out blue gray. I did use the auto correct on the computer, but, this is the best it came out. I think I may need to connect some of the darks to get rid of the spottiness.
Friday, July 9, 2010
Here are some strawberries I painted outside around 4:00 in the afternoon that's why they have the long shadows. I set them up in two different bowls as well, but, I liked this composition the best. One of the bowls was cut glass which would be a good study and the other is the same silver bowl from the lemons. I really like the reflections of the strawberries in that bowl so maybe on another day I will try that.
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
4th of July in the Country
Above is a plein air painting that I did from the balcony of our hotel while my toddler napped. Because of my broken foot, we went to Glen Rose, Texas where the kids could do all sorts of activities and I could sit. So for 4th of July, we were in landlocked Texas. This turned out to be a wonderful experience. My family enjoyed the activities at the hotel and the fireworks while I got to sneak in some painting!
I did two ugly paintings and two decent paintings. I thought the one above was okay, but, my husband who is pretty honest and critical thinks it is outstanding. Everyone has their own opinion. This is however, a good representation of seeing land, land, land as far as you can vs. my favorite which is ocean side!
The highlight of the trip was a drive we took through a safari park. The wild animals are more like friendly house pets. I had to post these because I couldn't believe how the animals would stick their heads into our car waiting for treats (every car gets one bag of food). If one animal was being a bully and not allowing the others to get to the treats, the animals knew to walk to the other side of the car to get treats!!! To see more of these photos, they are on my blog.
Monday, June 28, 2010
More French Riviera
Well, I broke my foot! Really. The only positive thing about it, is that I can sit and paint. So I worked on 3 paintings today. I painted outside with my foot propped up. Both of the above paintings are from photos. The other was a scene of giant Oak leaf hydrangeas. I will post that another day.
You have seen the black and white study of the Bike Race in Nice in a previous post. It is almost how I imagined. Still I would like to treat these cyclists as a single shape with colors mixing, just giving you the idea that they are cyclists. In the photo the cyclists are backlit so you really can't see as much detail as I have here. I did this on hot press paper. I sat on my back porch as the sky grew dark and thundered just before the rain came.
Beau Rivage was started a few weeks ago. Since I was so unhappy about my new status of being stuck with my foot up, I just finished this painting without being too careful. I liked how the finishing touches came out. Much looser than when I started. I also enjoyed the experience of "just do it". Because of that feeling, I started the Bike Race. Although I started Bike Race in a loose style, as the time went on, I got tighter, unintentionally.