Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Daily Painting Practice - Last Painting of 2008

Do you look at today as another year coming to an end or as a beginning of a new year to come? To me there is opportunity in either direction. Looking back gives an opportunity to review the year, goals met or not met, what got done what didn't get done, and most importantly, an opportunity for gratitude.

If you are like me, the goals I usually set for myself at the beginning of the year fall apart within a month because they are based more on optimism rather than realism. It's not that they are not attainable....the reality is that I usually don't persist in maintaining the discipline needed to fulfill my own wishes....Discipline? I don't even like to spell it.
Detail of Last Painting
This year like many was filled with changes, disappointments, insights and of course, lots of fun. My evolutionary path to become a painter continues to surprise me. Here is a list of some of the bends in the road. This year:
I gave my first demonstrations at art clubs and taught a class at the Joselyn Museum.
I met a group of friends and went out plein air painting once a week last spring and summer.
I was represented by 3 galleries.
I was juried into my first two national shows. ( Even received an award in one)
Bought my first advertisement in a national art magazine.
I stopped selling on Ebay and withdrew from The Daily Paintworks group so I could focus on larger work.

Detail of Last Painting

Not a bad list. Most important to me is that I have defined for myself what I hope to achieve in my work and how I want to paint. That's another way of saying I have made the decision to stop experimenting so much with varying styles. I guess it is never too late to mature.... even in your 50's.
click on the image to enlarge the painting
Last Painting of 2008
(needs a title)
20"x30" oil on canvas

Here is the completed last painting of 2008. ( I know I should have a goal of improving my photography in 2009) Actually, my goals for this year:
Improving the quality of expression in my work using light, texture, emotion and narrative.
Concentrate on interpretation rather than reproduction.
Get accepted into 3 national juried shows
Produce and sell so much quality work I start complaining about all the taxes I have to pay as an artist.

Happy new year everyone!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Daily painting practice - Take Your Pick

click on the painting to enlarge the image
Take Your Pick
24"x30" oil on canvas

Tonight it is supposed to be -12°F...that's below, BELOW ZERO !!!! Right now it is a balmy 1°F. I had forgotten to post this finished painting of the Omaha farmer's market after teasing you with a work in progress post back in July. (see here) .

Anyway, I thought this reminder of summer flowers and short sleeve shirts would help keep the hope alive until warmer weather returns.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

daily painting practice - more progress on still life painting

You know, I didn't realize just how long it had been since my last post until I tried to log into Blogger and I forgot my password. I had to think for a bit.... could be a sign of age too!

Here is where I left off on the still life. I am working on this for a competition and it needs to be finished by January. Since the last post I have made a little progress. (not enough). I missed working all this week because of a grand kid inspired cold. He shares everything with Grandpa.
Here's a little diversion. I spotted this guy sitting on our fence. He scared all the birds away from the feeder. I took this photo through the blinds of the kitchen window.
I've made some progress on the dried wheat stalks and worked more on the apples and the light on the vase.
Now I'm starting on the detail of the red cloth. The folds are a challenge but a lot of fun.
Detail of Apples
click on photo to enlarge detail
They will get one last go over after I do the detail in the table cloth. One trick of getting a good shadow on your apples is to mix in or glaze over with the background color. It also helps tie your painting together.
Detail Cloth and Bread
click on photo to enlarge detail
The cloth is nearly finished and the bread is at the finished under painting stage.

I have a new favorite artist this week, after watching the PBS documentary on Winslow Homer. Fascinating artist. I was all inspired after discovering he changed his style and did his best work after turning 50....... Never give up!