Friday, April 27, 2007

Daily Painting Practice - Work in Progress day 2

Obviously I have lots of work still to do. The background needs a rich glaze of ultra-marine and alizarin crimson to really deepen the color.

The Collection - Work in Progress
24" x 30"
oil on canvas

Here is the progress I made since yesterday . The votes are close on including the etching in the background or not. It is interesting to hear the comments. I still am open either way but I am leaning......

Back to work. I need to finish this by Sunday. Next week, I am thinking of a huge landscape. maybe 48"x 72"... should be a blast.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Daily Painting Practice - The Collection - Work in Progress

I am falling behind this week on my studio painting so I am not posting as many daily painting practice paintings as I normally do. I need to concentrate and focus on the show pieces.
Here is a better photo of the arrangement. There is a debate going on between my art advisor/wife and myself as to whether the framed etching should be included. I think it can be if I change the size and cut off the top. Others say it should come out completely. Any thoughts?

The Collection - Work in Progress
24" x 30"
oil on canvas

My art consultant/wife has a keen eye for composition so when I said I was thinking of doing a painting with her shell collection I knew I was going to need more time to work on the set up. We have collected shells and sand from our visits to the ocean and various beaches through the years. The collection is a memory warehouse for us.

Just started laying in the darks. I am keeping the underpainting very cool and grey. I am excited about this one. The light is doing some beautiful things to the glass and shells. I must get back to work now I thought you would like another sneak peek.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Daily Painting Practice - Painting like Monet

click on he picture to enlarge the image

The Bird Feeder
oil on masonite

I have been very busy this week with paintings for my show and not getting to the daily paintings as often as I would like. I thought I would share an older piece I did when we lived in West Virginia (2002) and I played with the idea of painting like the impressionists rather than my usual style. Back then I only painted one painting a year.

This is mostly dots and blobs of paint. No line work. I sat at our dining room window and painted our back yard. I hope you enjoy it.

For those who subscribe to my blog via email you may have received a strange posting today. For some reason the automatic feed sent out two older posts. I have no idea how that happened so I'll blame it on global warming.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

daily painting practice - Van Gogh'n Fishin'

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Gone Fishing
oil on masonite
(Click Here to Bid on ebay)

I was originally thinking of painting this in a more realistic manner with dark shadows and lots of detail, but as I started to paint I kept thinking of Vincent Van Gogh and how he might approach this subject. Needless to say Van Gogh won the argument and we went fishing together.

Friday, April 20, 2007

daily painting progress - This week's work in progress

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Nebraska Late Afternoon
(work in progress)
12" x 24"
oil on canvas

Week number three. Painting number three. Maybe I should call it The road to the show ? This one is 60% complete. Details, trees, cloud and sky work left to do.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

daily painting practice - Two Red Apples

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Two Red Apples
oil on masonite

Sweet delicious red apples. The artist's fall back when still life props or ideas are hard to find. What is the universal appeal of apples? I think it has to do with a simple form that we all can relate to. What do you think?

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Daily painting practice - Olives and an onion

A quick sketch before the light changes..... or before I change the composition.
I love artists who can paint moody mysterious paintings. The shadows are the key I think. Check out artist (Chris Cooper). Not only mysterious but amusing and quirky. I'm experimenting with this one. The mystery of the half cut onion...Sounds like an old Hardy Boys book.
click on image to enlarge the picture

Olives and an Onion
oil on masonite

I enjoy painting the sparkle on the rim of jar lids. I wonder if there is a fancy art name for that type of painting. Landscape artists can call themselves Plein Air painters, why not a Plein jar lid painter. Not quite the same ring to it.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

daily painting practice - dandelions

This is not a great photo but it gives you the idea of the dramatic lighting I can get now that I changed my studio around. I moved my bookcases to the south wall and now the west light or the north light can be used on my still life setups.
click on the image to enlarge the picture

First Pick
oil on masonite

Springtime temperatures are back here in Omaha. We had 70 degree weather two weeks ago but then a cold snap came and killed back all the flowers that were beginning to sprout. The first to recover were these dandelions. The first pick of 2007.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Daily painting practice - ring in the new week

I don't have progress photos this time. Just a quick fun little painting.
click on the image to enlarge the picture

oil on masonite

I saw this bell in an antique store two weeks ago. I have always liked bells but never have seen any practical purpose for them these days. Maybe the reason I like them is because they seem to have a more magical side to them, being a hybrid of musical instrument and alarm system. There is something poetic about bells don't you think?

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Daily Painting Practice - Grandma's House -work in progress

If I was an abstract painter I would be finished already. Is there such a thing as details in abstract art?
Notice the dangerous placement of my tea cup?
Darks and lights blocked in.

Getting the underpainting started with the addition of some color.

Grandma's House - Work in progress
oil on masonite

I'm at the point where the underpainting is complete so now for the fun part. I get to play with the paint. This is my second painting for the show. I'll finish it tomorrow. How's that for determination? Two paintings down 28 to go in 18 weeks. No post tomorrow folks I''ll be painting!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

daily painting practice - painting in the opposite direction

I thought it might be fun to try and paint a still life completely backwards or better to say in the opposite direction than I usually do. Most of the time I paint the darks first and head toward the light. Sometimes I mark off the too extremes, darks and highlights, but then I finish dark to light. This time I experimented in going backwards.

This photo helps show the
forms being built as I continue to paint backwards from light to dark. At this point my brain started to get confused. Once I began painting the mid tones I found it hard to keep getting darker in small steps. I wanted to jump to the darkest value then work towards the light. Sometimes it is difficult to break up the habits we form in our daily work.

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Afternoon Tea
oil on wood

The orange is just glowing in the afternoon light and the teapot sits there with a very regal look. I like to think of the objects as living things. This painting has a very angular feel. Angles repeat and repeat throughout the composition, the teapot, the orange slice and the angular pattern in the design of the fabric. My only angle was to keep practicing.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Daily Painting Practice- outdoor flower market

Here is the block in stage. I actually started by painting 4 blobs of Cadmium Red to place the red flowers. I then tried to keep them a brilliant red by greying the other colors. The flowers are partially back lit which makes them glow and makes the glass sparkle. It presents an interesting problem though when you get to decide the value of the background.
Dots of brilliant color and greys both warm and cool. The light is bouncing all over the place which makes the painting very active.
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Outdoor Flower Market
oil on masonite

The Omaha farmer's market is a treasure of flowers in the summer. Some sell the flowers in buckets and some sell little arrangements in glass vases like these. Tables full of flowers make it hard to decide which to bring home. I can't get enough of painting flowers. They can be pure joy to paint.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Daily Painting Practice - Morning light in the pine woods

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Morning Light in the Pine Woods
oil on masonite

Morning light illuminating the pine trees in one of Omaha's parks. I had done a few sketches and taken a few photos last fall. While walking through this grove of young pine trees, I had to stop when the sun lit up the path. The woods took on an almost ethereal glow. I half expected to hear music or see faeries flying around. Instead a couple of teenagers appeared smoking cigarettes as they walked the path. I wonder if Thoreau had teenagers throwing stones in Walden's Pond as he contemplated the serenity of the woods?

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Daily painting practice - Work in progress - painting Peonies in Glass Vase

I need to finish one larger studio piece each week until the end of August in order to have enough paintings for my one man show. Here is this week's work in progress starting with a charcoal drawing.

This peony bloom sits in the background. I like to keep the shadows thin at this stage and then add some opaque color to develop the form.

I didn't like where this was heading. It had no zing, no punch, no drama. I felt like I lost my idea for the painting. So I stepped back to re-evaluate. I needed to cool down the underpainting to help make the pink pop out more.
I made a 7 step value range of black and white. This would help me control the values in the underpainting.
I painted over the entire drawing without blending the values. (much). Like paint by number without the numbers. I was paying more attention to how I wanted the light to hit the flowers.
Next I expanded the palette to include various tinted reds and violet. The original black to white was moved to the back.

Work in Progress
Peonies in a Glass Vase
oil on canvas

I decided to make some of the peonies white to add more drama. I have only worked on the left hand side at this point. Lots more work to do in a short time. I will not post tomorrow because I will be finishing this painting. The final version can be viewed at the show Sept. 7.

...Well maybe I'll give a sneak preview if you promise not to tell.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

daily painting practice - Platte River landscape

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Platte River Clouds
oil on masonite
Just a small landscape sketch today. The clouds are the main characters and doing all the work in this piece. Clouds come and go so fast here in the midwest. If you blink they are gone. Best not to blink and just paint fast.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Daily painting practice- Here I Van Gogh Again

I made the composition off center and the objects are a little larger than I usually make them. I like the off center look. I think it draws your attention. Of course the ultimate goal for the artist is to hold your attention.
Painting pears in sunlight, what could more enjoyable? I like the way the main pear feels at this point. Very solid and extremely delicious looking.
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Two Pears in a Bowl
oil on wood

Every now and then I like to break out and have fun just pushing paint around. When I do that I think of Van Gogh. EVen with all of his troubles, he must have enjoyed the feel of paint being pushed and pulled on the surface. I even used a palette knife on the background. The paint was thick and creamy, like chocolate icing...UMMMMMM UMM.

Monday, April 02, 2007

daily painting practice - Nebraska Gal

Start with a quick painting over the transferred drawing.
Paint in the lights. I found a new way to create the transparent brown/red.
Use Lamp Black and Rose Madder Lake. It makes a great transparent underpainting for shadows.

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Nebraska Gal
oil on masonite
A true Nebraskan girl decked out in the colors of the Huskers. Is it a sin to admit I don't follow Nebraska football? I don't follow any football really. The shirts look good though.