Sunday, December 26, 2010

New figures in wax

I've combined three works into one here, each one successively smaller, by attaching them, one on top of the other. It gives the feeling of reflections in a series of mirrors although the figures are not the same, but they are split images of the same figure at the edges, in the two larger figures. The small figure is very faded and indistinct. This continues my split figure work from last year. The work is 15x22 overall with 9x12, and then 5x7, contained in the larger work.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Two new wax paintings

Here are two scenes of a California Creek I visited a few years ago. Larger, top one, is 9x12 and painted with a combination of oils and wax or encaustic. Other is 5x7 done solely with the wax medium. The wax lets me get a texture and polished gloss that I can't do as well in oils. I need to experiment with more mediums in oils to get some gloss as I go along to balance the colors better versus waiting for a final varnish coat.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Journey painting

Here's another view of the new work. You can see I'm smiling because it's done.....

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Journey work completed

I've finally completed my work based on Spencer Wells' book, Journey of Man. The work is done in encaustic, or wax, and is 28x40, and comprised of 2,210 small figures to represent the 50-60,000 years, or about 2,000 plus generations since all men had the same ancestor. It's a fascinating story, traced through our DNA by Wells. He also shows the migrations out of Africa for mankind. The attribute we call race is really a modern construct, based on exposure to sun depending on where we migrated to, and genetic isolation and mutation. We are all brothers at the beginning of this journey, yet find race a reason to hate each other. On top of that we've added religion and nationalism to our original tribal conflicts. It seems as we move forward, we find more reasons for hate. I tried to express our relationships and love in this work.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

New small landscapes

Have been busy with a new long term art project, involving 2,200 small images so only a few landscapes lately as also travelled visiting relatives. Only did carry on so found I could fit the 5 tubes of paint I needed, red, yellow, blue, white, and gel, into the little baggies allowed for liquids on airplanes. It's a good exercise to limit yourself to just the three primaries.

The larger project has taken me from mid-September to now at about an hour a night whenever I've been home. Work is in encaustic and tedious so an hour is about all I can do at a sitting. Will post it when I'm done, about Thankgiving week I hope.

The landscapes are all 5x7 done in oils and are various scenes from Hawaii, Seattle, and Oregon. The images are:
Green Lake Snow
Magnuson Park Road
Kauai Beach
Oregon Haystack Rocks

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Wikstrom Gallery Seattle Scenes show

Had two small works as part of the Wikstrom Brothers Gallery "Seattle Scenes" show in Seattle. Here I am standing next to the works. The opening was well attended Saturday evening.

Also here is an 8 x 10 palette knife painting of the Haystack Rocks on the Oregon coast.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Two new outdoor works

The two paintings here are both 8x10 inches and painted outdoors, one at Seattle's Queen Anne hill looking toward Magnolia hill. The other is from Golden Gardens Beach along Puget Sound. Lots of great places to paint in Seattle, when the weather cooperates. Van Gogh had this issue in France with the wind but the resulting swirling paintings were worth it. Even nice days in Seattle bring wind in many places. Maybe a sandbag to hold down the easel will help.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Color studies

Here are two small paintings on the same 8x10 panel. Top is a limited three color palette in complementary colors, Alizarin Crimson (red), Ultramarine Blue, and Naples Yellow, plus white. The bottom is the same scene with analagous colors, same red and yellow plus Cadmium Red Light, so again 3 colors plus white. The bottom image reminds me of the color transformations you can do with software but here it was painted outdoors, from the scene. These are views at Seattle's Magnuson Park near the Lake Washington beach.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Seattle View

This is a sketch of the building I work in for my part time job. It's a view from the bus stop looking south into downtown Seattle on Eastlake Ave. I don't paint many city views but want to do more. I tried to stay fast and loose on this one but had to go back and correct the perspective after looking at it for a while. It's a little uphill first, then flattens out and the vanishing point is about center vertically on the far left. Still a little off in spots but it's done on a canvas pad, 8 1/2 x 11unstretched, and I won't bother until I do a larger one under more rigoruous standards, with a better drawing.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Outdoors at Seattle's Magnuson Park

Another nice sunny day last week in Seattle, although today it's in the 90's and without air conditioning, a little warm in the house, especially sitting in front of a laptop pumping out hot air.

In this 8x10 the goal was to concentrate on shapes and sculptural structure of the trees and landscape. This really brings me back to my old style of painting where I get the lonely feel of classic nature, without people to interfere, although the road in the front is a man made element, as maybe even is the kite hill that dominates the front of this image.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Outdoor painting

Began my outdoor painting this week in Seattle's Discovery Park. We did value studies but I took some photo references and finished the work indoors this weekend. Next week we move to color at Magnuson Park, closer to my home. It is a nice group and all the work was fantastic. Mitch Albala is a great teacher. His mantra is "simplification". Get the shapes and values right and that's a big part of success. Here are my results, all 8x10 inches. May need a few touchups but pretty close to done. Want to paint next session a little "looser" with more dynamic brushstrokes. Might do 5x7 to get more of that look. The bottom image documents a few of the group painting out in the "plein air."
PS. Also finally finished my database and documentation project except for a few stragglers where I need to take new higher resolution photos. Finally can match up my work, my images of the work, and my database. Now maintenance is simple as only need to docuemnt new work.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Getting ready for outdoor painting group that begins this week.Once all prep is done I should be ready to paint outdoors the rest of my days. Been meaning to do more of it, despite Seattle weather, and now have no excuses.

Also been taking a lot of hours working on better documentation of many years of work. I've had a database, and image files, but no coordination between the two. Am getting close to finishing and then only will need to add new work with the new system. It's tedious work so can only take an hour or two at a time, and does take away time from painting but it is necessary going forward.

Here is a small work, 9x12, that I did from a cropped photo of trees lying in a pond.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Outdoors at Green Lake

Had a picnic and then an outdoor painting session in the evening. Nice time except for the bugs. All my equipment worked well in preparation for a painting group I will be joining in August to paint outside in Seattle's parks. August is the best bet for some decent weather here.

The painting is 8x10 and is complete with a few touchups indoors. One issue is outside, even in the shade, the brightness level is high which tends to make you paint a little too low key. Have to adjust but that is why I want to get a few sessions in before I join the group.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

New Spokane River painting

I've had out of town visitors so doing more photography than painting. Finally finished this image of downtown Spokane, Washington. Did an earlier version and didn't like it and still had a lot of trouble with it but finally brought it to a reasonably satisfactory solution. It's 16x20. Th scene is the falls which run through town as the river comes into a power plant.

Have enrolled in an outdoor painting group for August, the best bet for good weather here in Seattle, so hoping to produce some good studies on-site and then turn these into some nice larger works in the studio.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

New Kauai Painting

Here is a 12x16 new oil painting of a valley in Kauai. I did a somewhat similar scene with the palette knife and now this one is brushed in with a lot of detail. Almost done but might do a few touchups again to get the light and dark contrasts a little stronger.

Had jury duty for a day and a half and ended up only waiting around so finished a Chuck Close art biography. These stories of successful artists really motivate me to get to work.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Nihau Island Painting

Did a trip on Kauai to Waimea Park and from the top you can see Hihau Island in the distance. There is red dirt and gray dirt on the hillside as the topography is mixed. The market the red dirt T-shirts but I guess no one wants grey dirt.

This is a 12x16 oil where I'm using brushes again after a period of palette knife painting. This one is more toward the realistic side versus the more impressionist works I often do. Each subject speaks to me differently and I go with the flow.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

New Hawaii Painting

This is a 16x20 painting from our trip to Wailua falls. Part was by kayak, then we walked along the river to the falls. This image caught the light shining through the trees along the river. I have several more images from this trip to work on that I like so stay tuned.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Kauai Valley

Another painting from my Kauai trip. This was a valley seen from a viewpoint between Poipu and Eleele, where we went to the gym. It's an 8x10 done in the thick style I like for such scenes.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Kauai Paintings

Back from a short vacation and painted a few images from the trip. First is an 8x10 oil sketch of the beach where we went swimming. Next two are further down the beach where it was rocky. These are both 12x16, one using brushes and the other mainly palette knife. Wanted to try both techniques on the same image. Both are almost done I think except for some final touchups once drier.

Monday, May 10, 2010

New Tulip Study

A small, 8x10, tulip study trying out some canvas pads that I will use when I travel to save weight. These are a new product with primed canvas in a pad of 10 sheets. If the result is good, I can then glue down the canvas to a good backing board to save it. It's a cheap way to do quick studies and experiment too without worrying about wasting materials.

These are rows of white tulips, then yellow, and another row of white in the distance against some nice white barns. Not sure if I will do a larger version. The front 2/3's is done with the palette knife while the sky is painted in with brushes. I'm going to an art critique class that doesn't like my palette knife work as much so am alternating with brushes although the first result was poor in that my canvas was too porous and rough so I destroyed the result although it was good practice getting back to the brush work again. Amazing how different the two techniques, brush and knife, are. Almost have to relearn the brush work again. It's all good though as long as I keep working.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Hubbard Glacier

Another painting from my Alaska trip photos. This is Hubbard Glacier, which is still advancing and huge. Wish I could have gotten a photo of the ship in front of the glacier to show the scale. The glacial wall is several hundred feet high. The valley clouds and fog break above the glacier to show the mountains where the glacier is formed.This is an 8x10 study in preparation for a larger work..

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Ketchikan Creek in Alaska

I went on an Alaska cruise last year but haven't done any paintings from my photos yet so decided to try one. This was the creek running through downtown Ketchikan. Tons of salmon running in the creek and I took some videos of them jumping on the ocean side. This is a 10x6 small painting of the creek.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Goose painting

This is a 20x26 painting of water lilies, trees, and a goose. It's an old painting I redid recently in a thicker style.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

New Green Lake image

This is a 5x7 oil of the view east toward the Green Lake Community Center. It's another image I never painted before but wanted to try a study of to see if it merits a larger work. Have done several 8x10's this weekend too and will post the best of those later once finishing touches are completed.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Devil's Punch Bowl

More work from my Oregon trips. The coast just has scenes that inspire me. You look down from a cliff into the punch bowl that fills with water through an arch in the cliffside. It's the light space near the center of the work where the water bubbles in with the tide. This is another 5x7 study I didn't do a larger work of but the study makes me think it has potential. You can really see the texture on this one.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Small Green Lake Study

This is a 5 x7 inch thickly painted study from an old photo of Green Lake I took. Never thought it was good enough for a larger work but am doing some small studies as recommended in a nice new landscape painting book I just finished reading. I want to prepare for painting outdoors now that spring is here so need to simulate the process inside so I have the quick pace needed for painting outdoors in the changing light and also have my palette knife technique down pat. The smaller the work though, the more I need to touch it up with a small brush at the end for details. Whatever works is the goal versus locking oneself into a single technique.

Monday, March 22, 2010

New Oregon Coast Painting

This is a new work from my trip to Oregon Coast a few weeks ago. I have several good evening photos to work from and am trying the palette knife technique on different images. This one I did quite a bit of brush work after the palette knife to finish it up.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Seattle Golden Gardens

A small painting, 8x10, started on site at Seattle's Golden Gardens park in summer. I redid it in the studio from the original design.
Finished attending the 5 week lecture series at Gage Academy on the subject of Color for Painters although the topics went beyond color to space and structure issues. These are what artists are always dealing with - the picture plane and today we also get to decide subject. Makes for a lot of decisions about what is art, what's worth painting, what style, what technique?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

New small night scene

I've been attending a lecture series on Color for Artists at the Gage Art Academy in Seattle. The building is right next door to Saint Mark's cathedral and when I leave the evening lecture the night lighting in the area always inspires me. I took some pictures again with a slow exposure to capture the light and this is my try at painting the scene. It's a little 5x7 oil and I like it and the abstraction of the night scene.

Also, just notified today that one of my 8x10 new works was accepted for the 41st Annual Associated Artists of Ocean Shores, WA, show. That's two for two this year so my new work is being validated.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Nowthwest Beach Scene

A 9x12 landscape from a photo taken by my daughter. I have a nice variety of textures and did the fence and details with a few small brushes and the rest with the palette knife. It's a nice sunny beach foot path to brighten up the day.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

La Connor Rocks

This is a 9x12 oil from a scene in the town of La Connor, north of Seattle. There is a rock wall as the town is built into the base of a hill and I took several photos of this beautiful formation to work from. I cropped the scene to show only a hint of sky but the pink flowers against the sky at the top left really highlighted the scene for me.

Friday, February 12, 2010

New Night Scene

I've been trying to continue a hot pace of work despite being busy at my "other job" lately. This is a scene from my memory of a beautiful night at near by Green Lake in Seattle. The dark storm clouds as the sun passed sunset made the lake silver with reflections of the lights in the distance. I had done an 8x10 of this but disliked the result so tossed it. This is much larger at 20x24 inches but I feel I pulled it off in my palette knife style.

Also found out today two of my somewhat abstract figures were accepted into an art show titled "Unclad" taking place in a town north of Seattle. I hadn't entered shows in a while but plan on trying to exhibit more as my new style develops. Also used the palette knife style on the figures so I must be on to something.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Tulip Fields in Yellow

There are many colors of tulips in the fields north of Seattle. This is an 8x10 with bright yellow tulips from a trip last summer.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

New Northwest Landscape

This is another 8x10 small landscape. The scene was the view from my hotel window on a trip to Spokane.

Continuing my 2010 cleanup by sorting and getting rid of old work in my basement storage area. Time to let some things go and keep the better work and
figure out what to take off the stretchers to reuse them for new work. Always feels good to feel organized and free of clutter.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Seattle's Golden Garden's Beach

Have been busy this week updating my art photo database. Have created thumbnail size images so I can pop them into my Access database and see each image in my data. It's a long project but finally will have the image in the same place as my data to better manage my work. Realize need to photo some I don't have images of and need to delete and toss the work not worth saving. Yes, we all create junk at times when experimenting. I'm a little bit of a pack rat and save too much.

The image here is from Seattle's Golden Garden's beach park. I sat on the rocks and painted this, with a large rock in front of me. I don't work outside that often as it's either too cold, wet, or hot. That's why I usually take photos to work from in the studio. I do plan on a few more outdoor sessions this summer and am preparing by getting my equipment gathered during the winter. This painting my favorite size for outdoors, 8x10. I have a 9x12 pochade box too but it's a little too large to travel around with.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

New night scene

Here is a 16x20 night scene with the dead end signs for the alleyway to my home. The artificial light above the telephone pole sends a harsh light onto the fall leaves on the ground. There is a thick wall of shrubbery with a few lights flickering through.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Night scene

I have several night scenes I like that I've been thinking of redoing in my new style but didn't know if it would work so did this small, 8x10, as an experiment and think it worked out well. Will try several larger ones. Getting to a pointillist type technique with the palette knife when needed and this lets me get the transitions from one color to another or one value to another.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Small Tulip Landscape

This is an 8x10 landscape from my visits to the tulip fields north of Seattle.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Oregon Hilltop

Here is a 12x16 thick oil from a scene taken from a high hilltop along the Oregon coast. It's very abstract and perhaps could use a little more work on the shapes but I'm revising my old work and liked the scene.

Two more new landscapes

Going over some old ideas again with more paint. One is a very abstract "Red House", a view from Phinney Ridge in Seattle toward the Western Olympic mountains with Ballard neighborhood in between. The other work is an Oregon Coast scene with some of the haystack rocks in the water. This one is not as successful but still better than the prior version.
These are 16x20.