Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Minumental

 
Peonies
2"by2"
This little painting was done for the NHIA "Minumentals" show with very small brushes!
 
It is painting #14.200, I painted 200 paintings in 2014! My goal was to complete 100.
Looking back, I learned a lot and my work did improve and I was pleased to realize that I like more than I thought I would, sold a few and won a few awards.
 
The mediocre ones still get me down so I packed them up in a box and put them out of sight.
 
My plan for 2015 is of course to continue painting. I want to improve my oil landscapes so I hope to focus on them.  I plan to apply for associate membership in the PSA, membership in NH Art Association and join Newburyport Art Association.  I will have a focus exhibit in December at Sullivan Framing so a lot of my work will be towards that end. Friends and Family have reminded me not to be so quick to wipe out or toss away so I am saving even my failures to help record my progress. 
 
 

Sunday, December 21, 2014

To the Beach

To the Beach
9x12 pastel on U-art 400 $200
I can find any number of excuses to avoid starting a new pastel.  My remedy for this was to try a small one every day. This scene is Salisbury Beach in MA. I like the way the sand path leads to the beach.  I might try it again lightening the tree and darkening the foreground.
 
Every year I celebrate the New Year with a trip to the coast and a walk on the beach. Even though it requires a double parker, Gore-Tex pants, wool sock and very heavy boots it is my way of welcoming in the new year and looking forward to Spring and brighter days.
 
Maybe this time I will photograph this scene and paint its winter view.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

The Steeple

The Steeple
5x7 pastel on Mi Teintes Touch $150
 
I took the reference photo for this on a day trip from Casco Bay to Bath Maine. It was fun to paint this and remember the summer, my favorite season.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Clementine

Clementine
5x7 oil on panel $150
 
I was so lucky to find these Clementines (or maybe they are tangerines) at Fresh Market complete with stems and leaves.  I can pretend I live in a warmer climate and picked these fresh off my trees! 
 
These have become my favorite snack food.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Peony 3

Peony 3
 8x8 oil on panel $175
 
This is the third in my peony series.  I thought it would be the easiest but it felt like wrestling.  I promised myself I would work through these tough ones and not be so quick to wipe them out.  I'm just glad its done.
 
Which do you like the best?


Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Peony 2


Peony 2
8x8 oil on panel $175

I painted the peonies again this morning, (almost all day actually).  They are still so beautiful and sweet smelling.  I am hoping the last two buds will open. I would also like to do a painting with them arranged like Manet's laying on a table. Below are the process shots.
I am pretty happy with this and I think it is finished.  I may adjust the shape of the flower in the top left corner.
 
This is the charcoal sketch.  I did it on the panel that I wiped out yesterday.  It took me quite a while to arrange the flowers but I like the composition and could not wait to get started.
 
Initial block-in.  I used a bristle brush to scrub in the basic shapes. At this point I am pretty happy with it.

Adding mid-tones and building up paint layers.  At this point I am pretty sure I can't save it!

Adding lights
 


Monday, December 8, 2014

Peonies in December

 
Peonies in December
6x6 oil on panel $150
 
I could not believe my luck.  I found these Peonies at Fresh Market in Bedford NH. Peonies in December!
 
I started this by toning the panel with rose, yellow and cerulean and I liked the way the flowers looked on such a delicate background. But... I thought they would be more dramatic on a darker background, when that didn't work I wiped the background and created a cool mid-tone gray.
 
I'm still not sure so I will do two more, light background and also dark background so I can compare. I hope the peonies last long enough.  Fresh Market is over an hour away!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Quince

Quince
6x6 oil on panel
 
I was happy to find these in the grocery store and I loved painting all their lumps and bumps. I can't imagine how they taste. I think I have to cook them.  I am still looking for fresh figs.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Orchid in Brown Bowl

Orchid in Brown Bowl
6x6 oil on panel
 
I am back to still lifes in oil for a while.  I delivered this and quite a few others to Sullivan Framing in Bedford NH.  for the Holiday Open House. Opening Reception Saturday Dec. 6 from 1 to 4. 
 
 

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Summer Afternoon

Summer Afternoon
6x8 pastel on Sennelier Pastel Card $175.00
 
I spend a lot of time at the Parker River Wildlife Reserve in Plum Island MA.  I occasionally paint there with a friend but also take many reference photos to get me through the long cold New England winters.
It is snowing now but I am in my cozy (small) studio and will begin a still life.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Salt Marsh Afternoon

Salt Marsh Afternoon
5x7 pastel on pastel card
 
Just a quick study to loosen up.  Sometimes I like these the best.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Skyscape

Skyscape
9x12 soft pastel on pastel card by Sennelier
 
I did this at a workshop with Robert Carsten, a Master pastelist, hosted by the Currier Museum in Manchester NH. I have taken quite a few workshops with Robert and he is an amazing teacher. It was a wonderful day. 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Maine Marsh

 
Maine Marsh (version 3)
9x12 soft pastel on art spectrum colorfix
 
This is the third version of my marsh scene painted in the Robert Carsten workshop and I like this one the best.  When I attend a workshop I want to try everything the presenter has to offer.  In his demo Robert first covered his paper with 7 layers of pastel, yes 7! At first the colors and values did not matter.  After about 5 layers he started smoothing them together and the last 2 layers were consistent with the scene. The image painted on top becomes muted and atmospheric.
 
I have been painting both in oils and pastels but not blogging or posting on facebook for a while. Hopefully I will catch up, review my goals for the year and think about goals for next year.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Sunlight on the Marsh

Sunlight on the Marsh
9x12 Pastels on art spectrum colorfix, aubergine
 
Day 2 of the  Carsten workshop sponsored by PSNH. Robert demonstrated a technique to encourage looseness and impressionistic light.  The basic shapes are first roughly blocked in and then layers of pastel are scribbled over it almost obliterating the image which is then re-worked on top. I decided to use the same reference photo in order to compare the various techniques.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Maine Marsh

Maine Marsh
9x12 pastel on Art Spectrum Colorfix, black
 
I just finished a wonderful workshop with Robert Carsten put on by the Pastel Society of New Hampshire. Robert is an excellent teacher, generous with his ideas.  The first day he demonstrated on black paper using a dry underpainting technique.  He chose a light and a dark of the three primaries for this and blocked in his basic shapes being true to his values.  I had never seen an underpainting done like this and even though I don't usually use black I had to give his method a try.  I am pleased with the result.
 
 

Apples and Copper

 
Apples and Copper
6x6 oil on panel
 
I have been playing with my new toys.  I bought a new easel, the Coulter System, and even though it is for plein aire I set it up in the studio to try it out.  I love the way the box is positioned just right and I can close it up when I am done or just taking a break. 
 
I also ordered my first Rosemary and Co. brushes and I love them.  This was done using the Shiraz flats.
 
I recently got an I-Pad Air.  After setting up my still life I photographed it and filtered it to help me paint looser. I've never done a still life from a photo before so I kept the still life set up.
 
Lastly, I photographed the finished painting using the I-Pad.  Even though I use a gray card to adjust my white balance I find the I=Pad does a much better job than my camera.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

"It's Pastel!"


I am pleased to announce that my painting "Into the Woods" was juried into the National Pastel Show at the Discover Portsmouth Center Gallery. It will be on display from Oct. 25th to Nov. 30th.  The Opening Reception is Saturday, Oct. 25th from 4-6pm. Please stop in if you are in the area.

Into the Woods
13x16

Monday, October 13, 2014

Pomegranite

Pomegranites
6x6 oil on panel
I visited Diane Mannion's blog and saw her review of Qiang Huang's workshop.  Her notes were very detailed explaining the five steps to his painting process.  I decided to give his technique a try. He begins by wiping his canvas with a small (very small) amount of refined linseed oil. I liked the way that helped the paint go on smoothly.  Another difference was the use of transparent red iron oxide and ultramarine to tone the canvas.  I usually use raw umber. Darks are added and lights are wiped.
 
 
 

 
Beginning to add color very loosely thinking in terms of cool, warm, light , dark etc.  I had trouble with this stage not being used to the slick surface the linseed oil created.
 
The almost final version again.  I want to punch up the color but may have to wait until the linseed oil dries somewhat.
 
 
Sometimes I have to prove to myself that I am making progress.  This is the pomegranate painting I struggled with a year ago.
 
 
T

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Harris Pond

 
Harris Pond
9x12 pastel
 
This was re-worked slightly, I added deeper darks and now I think I may lighten the lights in the water. I will also adjust the distant reflections.  It may become a completely different painting. At least with pastels it is difficult to fiddle with it once it is under glass.
 
My Dakota easel came yesterday and it is all set up and ready to try out before my workshop with Robert Carsten.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Indian Head

5x7 oil on RayMar panel
Painted en plein air
Indian  Head Resort in New Hampshire' s White Mountains
I painted this on a trip up north and then photographed it with my new I-Pad, the one I do not know how to use yet!) I could not figure out how to post it to my blog so I e-mailed it to myself, opened it on my Kindle and posted it. The technology learning curve is steep.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

30 paintings in 30 days

30 paintings in 30 days
 
September was busy but I still managed to paint 30 in 30.  I did not stick to my original theme of using all the still life props I have collected, I realized by day 2 that I want to paint what I want to paint and that's okay.  I also planned to keep everything square and I managed that by cropping!
 
I learned not to wipe out a painting too soon, two of these are gone for good and now I wish I saved one of them.  I like at least 10 of them and that's a pretty good average. I had the most fun with the plein air paintings and they helped with my studio landscapes too.
 
I am ready for a day off (or two or three) and now that I have learned to paint fast I am ready to slow down and work on larger, more complex paintings.
 
 

Monday, September 29, 2014

Looking Up

 
Looking Up
6x6 oil on panel
$150
 
Day 30 of 30 paintings in 30 days
 
I was at the Cox Reservation in Essex MA where I spotted this apple tree.  It was a beautiful crisp day and I could not believe how blue the sky was.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Pear Study

 
 
   
 
Pear Study
pastel 9x12
 
Saturday morning felt like time to play.  I don't usually use pastels for still lifes but the pears were set up waiting and I thought I would do a little experimenting. I chose Art Spectrum suede in a color called jacaranda, a brilliant blue violet.  I had not made friends with this paper in the past so I had nothing to lose by going overboard with the color. I started with pastel pencils laying out the composition paying special attention to the spaces between the fruit. Some of the problems I have had in the past stem from jumping in with the soft pastels too soon because I am in love with their color. I progressed to Giraults and had to stop for the day before I got a chance to over-work this. I don't know if it is done or if I will keep it as a study.  It was a lot of fun and I am giving this paper another chance.
 
 
 
Pear study cropped

Friday, September 26, 2014

Light on the Marsh

Light on the Marsh
9x12 soft pastels
Girault and Terry Ludwig on Colorfix
 
 


Thursday, September 25, 2014

Complements

 
Complements
6x6 oil on panel
 
I did not paint today.  Since the beginning of September I have completed 25 paintings for the 30 in 30 challenge, I participated in a paint-out and wet paint auction and painted plein air twice more.  I delivered 6 paintings to the Sullivan Framing anniversary show and one to the NH Institute of Art fundraiser auction. I had a pastel accepted into the national juried show sponsored by the Pastel Society of NH and another pastel accepted into the Center for the Arts juried show. I also signed on with a friend to do a local art show.
 
This painting was done a few days before the 30 in 30 began and I did not post it in case I needed a "catch-up" day and boy do I need a "catch-up" day! It is only 7:30 and I am ready for bed - everything will look better in the morning.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Plum Island


Plum Island
9x12 pastel on Mi Teintes Touch
 
I painted plein air at Plum Island today.  What a gorgeous day to spend at the beach!  Barb and I had so much fun we decided to make it a weekly event, at least until the really cold weather hits.

 
cropped version for the 30 in 30 challenge
 

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Summer Radishes

 
Summer Radishes
6x6 oil on panel
$150
 
All I could think of as I painted these radishes was how good they would taste in my salad.  I had to keep spritzing them so they kept their shine.

 
This is the transparent oil sketch

Pear study

Pear Study
6x6 oil on panel
I did this study on a black painted panel.  I loved the way the paint moved around so smoothly. I'm not sure about this one but I promised myself I would not wipe-out without giving it a good look. The background is more neutral than this.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Cherry Study


Cherry Study
4x4 oil on panel
 
What do you paint when you're too tired to paint - something simple that worked before. That's what I thought but I spent an hour arranging these three.  I added a vase and a lemon and then in the end settled for simple.
 
This is day 22 of the 30 in 30 challenge and it has been a challenge! The plein air event was fun and now I am back to the studio and my small still lifes.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

The Salt Marsh

 
The Salt Marsh
9x12 oil on panel
 
Today was the day of the paint-out.  We headed to Salisbury this morning with Gore-Tex and gloves.
Barb and I spent at least an hour driving in search of the perfect spot which we found in Newburyport just before the bridge to Plum Island. The weather turned delightful but a little too windy and we had a great day painting.  We turned our work in at 3:00 and are headed back for the auction.  If this does not sell I will take it home with me.  What a great day and a great experience!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Salisbury Pastel


Salisbury Pastel
7x10
 
Still trying to decide what to bring to the paint out.  I struggled with this one so I think I will pack my pastels but start with oils and see how it goes.