Friday, May 22, 2015

"Watcher" Oil Portrait On Canvas

Here is what I have been working on lately.  Another painting from Alex Lee Johnson's photo "Sally".  Thank you Alex!  I guess this painting belongs in my dark series of faces and figures.  The difference is that I painted this one with my water mixable oils.  Even though I have used them off and on, it is still a newer medium for me and I am still learning.  I do love the work time of these paints and also the pigments seem more vivid.  In the early stages of the painting I use quick drying medium and then work my way through the fat over lean rule ending with a mix of paint and walnut oil.  No fumes and cleanup is relatively easy.  I even bought some cold wax medium to play with.  Not really sure how I am going to use it so far but it intrigues me for some reason.  I welcome any tips on using cold wax from any artists out there who have used it.  In the meantime, have a great Memorial Day Weekend!  Until the next time......

Peace to you!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Sketchbook And Dealing With Rejection

I recently entered two juried art exhibits .  I have entered many juried exhibits in the past and have always had good luck getting in.  I have also sold many paintings this way and snagged a few awards along the way.  This was my first attempt at getting back into the local art scene.  I have not exhibited any work since my move almost 2 years ago.  I was a little nervous but excited at the same time.  I could not wait to win another award and had my prize money spent a hundred different ways.  I could not have been more WRONG!!!!!!  I did not make it into either show and man I did not see that coming!  At first I was devastated.  Acting like a big baby I did not feel like painting or drawing or anything.  Surprisingly enough though the devastation soon passed, the sun and moon continued to rise and life went on.  Nobody likes rejection but for lack of a better way of putting it it's just part of life.  This setback made me remember why I started painting in the first place.  I love to paint. I love to create.  Weather it be a drawing, a painting or even coloring with my granddaughter, there is so much joy in the process that it makes my journey through life that much sweeter.  The rejection is part of showing your work and we all go through it at one time or another.  It does not define who we are as a person or as an artist.  It just did not work for that particular person or show.  Don't abandon your joy for fear of rejection.  Don't give fear that much power!

This is "A Gathering Of Angels"  It is one of the rejected works but I loved painting this and it has spiritual significance for me.  The angels were painted from old cemetary statues that I found online.

I have worked on a couple of sketches lately too.  I have often started carrying my sketchbook to doctors appointment, my daughters music lessons etc. and work in it as I wait.  It makes the time fly.
These sketches were started in graphite but I later worked in charcoal and pastel.  Here is "Vintage Woman"

And here is "Mikael"  Thank you Aud Rye for the use of your photo.  It was a challenging one!
Until we meet again, enjoy your artistic journeys!

Peace to you!

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

"Isle Of Id" An Abstract Painting

This painting is another make over that transformed into a brand new piece.  I lived with the original in my studio for a few months.  It was hanging up where I could see it whenever I work.  The painting just seemed to fade into the wall.  I loved one part of the painting but it just wasn't working as a whole.  I finally took it down a couple of days ago and had fun just adding layers of paint.  I ended up having to cover the part that I loved for the sake of the whole.  The original glass shard texture remains.  Sometimes old works that miss the mark make a wonderful under painting.
Good gallery wrapped canvas are sturdy and very re-usable. This one is 18x24x1.5 .  The sides are painted black.  Don't be afraid to cover old works.  I say dive in and create something new.  A masterpiece may be just around the corner!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

"Kindred Spirits" Mixed Media Portrait Painting

I finished this painting up last week, lived with it for a week, then tweaked it a little more yesterday.  It is done in India ink and acrylic on an 18 x 24 canvas.  The colors are light for me but this is where the painting keeps coming back to.  The "black" is actually Paynes Grey full strength. It is available on my website.  Two dark works coming soon!  Until the next time...

Peace to you!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

"Dandelions" Acrylic And Collage Figurative Painting

A middle of the week painting done over an old piece that I was not happy with.  The painting is done in acrylic over collage on a 12 x 24 x .5 canvas.  The photo of the beautiful little girl was obtained  from Paint My Photo.  I found it a little while ago.  She is so cute that I needed to paint her.  Glazing and dry brushing used to achieve the final result.   Hope your week is going well. 

Friday, April 17, 2015

"Charmed Life" Mixed Media Portrait Painting

Here is another painting on the lighter side of my portrait series.  I started this painting from a sketch done in my sketchbook.  I have found it very helpful to sketch a rough composition first.  It is one less thing to worry about as you get into the work when you have the composition figured out.  I used to think this would take away the spontaneity but you can be spontaneous with other things.  When I was satisfied with the composition I drew it onto the canvas with Inktense pencils.  I then proceded in much the same way as the last painting using India ink and acrylic.  I just keep building it up in layers going back and forth between the lights and the darks.  The fish was added last (spontaneously of course;)  Charmed Life is done on an 18 x 24 x1.5 gallery wrap canvas.  It is available on my website.  This is the second of three light works in a row.  I will post the third one next week.  Right now I have a more involved piece on my easel that is about at the halfway point.  I think it will end up a little darker but I think it will need the contrast.  I also have an oil portrait (dark) waiting for my return.  The oil layers that are down are already dry so it has been there a while.  I have been doing lots of painting but Spring cleanup has begun as well so things are busy.  I have entered 2 juried exhibits online.  One is local and one is in California.  I'm not sure if I will be accepted or not but it feels good to be getting my foot back in the door.  I am really anxious to check out the art scene here and feel it is long overdue.  Another exhibit is coming up at a local college but it won't be juried until May.  I will let you know the outcome.  That about wraps it up for me this week.  I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Peace to you!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

"The Merchant" Mixed Media Painting And Spring

It is finally beginning to feel like Spring here in Northeastern Ohio.  I was out for a walk yesterday and wanted to share these photos:

This is Lake Erie at the end of my street.  A beautiful little park to enjoy the wonderful view.

Here it is from another angle.  It's hard to believe that just a month ago all of this was frozen.  It's great to see the waves once again!

In the studio I have been busy still painting away at my figures.  I have been painting a little brighter and lighter the past few weeks.  Here is one of the pieces that I just completed.  I used Derwent Inktense ink pencils to start this piece.  I have had them in my studio for a few years and have been getting a lot of use out of them lately.  I use them to lay in the initial drawing.  I then progressed with Pitt pen, Dr. Martins India ink and then finally acrylic.  I especially like the text added to the headpiece.  I have been working in my sketchbook quite a bit lately.  I've started taking it with me when I have appointments and it sure makes the waiting time fly by!  I practice faces, try out composition ideas or just doodle.  It keeps the creative juices flowing!
Here is "The Merchant": 
Happy painting!  Until the next time...

Peace to you!  

Saturday, March 28, 2015

"Green Tea" Contemporary Figurative Painting And the Cracked Re-Do

Lately I have been back to painting faces and figures.  I am enjoying it more and more.  I have been painting quite a dark series in my quest for contrast.  This week I decided to lighten it up a bit.  This was a wonderful painting to work on.  I especially like adding the pattern to the dresses.  The figure on the right just evolved.  The figure on the left was the ornery one.  Even after the initial drawing I had to fight with this one.  After many changes this is the pose that I ended up with.  I saved the faces for last but in the long run I liked the work better without them. All in all I like the "lightness" of this painting . It is done on a 24 x 24 x 1.5 gallery wrap canvas and available on my website.

The other quest I have been on this week is trying to incorporate some of my art supplies into new works.  I still have water mixable oils and India ink that I am afraid will go bad and be wasted if I don't use them.  I am working on a portrait in oil and while I was waiting for it to dry I had a bright idea to oil paint over a failed mixed media painting.  I just started applying the paint and although I tried to adhere to the fat over lean rule I got a little carried away.  First of all, the canvas was already too "used".  I was painting over a failed painting done over a failed painting with collage.  I did rough it up a little with a dry wall sander but this was just not enough.  Anyway, to make a long story short this is what I ended up with:
By the next morning the oil paint was totally cracked.  All that wonderful Alizerin Crimson down the drain!  Good thing I tried not to waste the supplies!  Live and learn I guess!  
So back to the studio I go.  I am having a bit more success with my India ink and am really enjoying using it so far.  We'll see where this leads!

Until the next time.......