Thursday, December 15, 2011

Moses Botkin Monthly Challenge

Windy Beach
12x9 oil on panel

This month the theme was "blue" - in whatever way we wanted to represent it. Well, I had two thoughts - the big blue skies of Texas, which are pretty special, or the blue of ocean. Only it is bigger than the skies over Texas. Those skies are dripping some wet stuff on us lately, for which we are extremely grateful.

Enjoy my fellow challenge artists' interpretations this month!

Holiday Blues
5x7 oil on hardboard

4x4 silverpoint and oil on gessoboard
©2011 Vicki Ross

Malibu Blue
4x8.75 oil on canvas
©2011 Ruth Andre

Blue Ice
16x20 oil on canvas

Monday, December 12, 2011

Waiting for Godot

7x5 oil on panel
$100 + s/h - sold

This was at a gallery for awhile - one of mine that frames the work for me - and its so small, I figured I'd sell it here rather than get a frame and send it on to another.
Its a scene from NYC with one of my favorite stories featured on a theater marquis.

Studio News

I keep forgetting to update some of my latest news on here! I had a lovely evening Friday night in Dallas at the Wisby Smith gallery at the Crescent. What a beautiful place. The artwork is really interesting too - ranging from the abstract to Native American figurative pieces. You can see the art on their website. Wisby Smith, like Russell Collection, reps some of the most important artists both living and past so I feel pretty good about being seen worthy of representation to their customers. The show there hangs until the end of December.

There was a video of the Randy Higbee opening reception posted which is fun to see. At least two of my pieces are still available as seen at about the one minute mark. :-)

I think all the gallery events are winding down now, but I have many paintings out there. If you are looking for a gift for someone special, look at pages linked in the side column for each of my representing galleries to see all the available inventory and contact them directly.

My days are now filling up with shopping, wrapping, shipping, decorating, baking, and parties, etc. Tis the season! School ends soon and I am excited that my parents will soon be here to make the holidays all the more meaningful.

I am looking forward to a couple of new projects for the new year! One being the works on paper which I will be sharing more of soon.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Beach Walk

8x8 oil on paper
$125 including s/h

I did a smaller version of these girls, which is at Randy Higbee Gallery for the 6" Squared show. And a similarly sized one which is at a gallery. And I thought I'd try it once again as I play with my timer and painting on paper. Obviously, I've enjoyed these girls on the beach.

I had a lovely surprise today - being recommended in the e-newsletter "Informed Collector" by Clint Watson. Thank you Clint!

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Catch and Release

10x8 oil on paper
$125 including priority shipping (US)

I've been trying to come up with a new way to create paintings for my blog again - for art collectors on a budget (and aren't we all these days, really?) I just can't paint those little canvases though. I find that they cause me to tighten up which could not be more frustrating for me. I've done 'sketches' on paper before and I like the results and the room to be expressive.

The paper is 9x12 and I am taping off the sizes I want to paint so there is a white border around the painting. The paper is substantial enough to stand up to the paint, its coated, acid free and it has a slight weave like canvas. While the works are larger, they aren't going to compete with my gallery work. I'm limiting myself to 30 minutes on these, and I can't tell you what a great exercise it is for me. A digital timer is the best tool in the studio. More on that later.

And finally, here are some fun ideas I've found while surfing the web for those of you who buy small paintings or my works on paper and want to display them creatively and cheaply.

1. Clipboards

2. Wooden hangers

3. Clips

4. Or you can easily get a ready made from with glass any home decor or craft store

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Leading Edge

6x6 oil on panel

Available at Loretta Goodwin Gallery

This is available at the gallery for their Tiny Treasures show which opens Thursday night in Birmingham. The last month has been such a whirlwind that I am not sure if I posted this already or not! If its a repeat... sorry. The fans at Daily Paintworks won't have seen it yet. I've joined that online gallery site finally. And I gave my blog a little facelift too today.

Sorry about my rant the other day. I was overwhelmed, but things settled down nicely this week and I've been able to focus on a new project in the studio. While excited about a new idea, I'm at a loss for creating these small works for the blog/online galleries. I really struggle with finding a subject to fit on this small format. But I can't paint larger and offer those at low prices. I'm trying to find a new project idea for the blog to get my juices going and provide fans with affordable, collectible art. Its still very important to me to do that. Heck, I can't afford most of the art I'd like to have - being able to buy small pieces and books from my favorite artists is wonderful.

I know that the subject has to be simple, a single figure works best. Beach scenes. I might become the "beach scene blogger." The weird thing is, I paint loosely and quickly. You'd think a small format would be ideal for simplifying. That is my challenge. And maybe I ought to embrace that and work on it.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

City Beat 15

6x6 oil on linen - sold

Its always fun to play with this perspective. Its almost abstract; all about the bold shadow and the marred pavement. A nice break after laboring over larger works.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Park Avenue

24x16 oil on linen

Park Shade

18x18 oil on linen

Both paintings available at Wisby Smith Fine Art, Dallas - for a show presented with Russell Collection Fine Art

Y'all...November has been crazeeee for me! First, if you have emailed me, I apologize for delays in responding. With a website (way out of date) and blog, a new book on Blurb, ETSY, joining Daily Paintworks (cool), inventory and business aspects, framing, 4 gallery shows and 7 total galleries to keep up with, I can barely paint anymore.
This is a problem.
A BIG problem.
I have to get back to making the art the most important part of my day. Sometimes I think just dropping off the grid sounds divine. But a blog and online galleries are a huge marketing tool and I enjoy using these tools and communicating with fans and patrons, but there has to be a balance. I think a lot of people don't actually read or click on my blog, which is the most up-to-date resource, for the full info when they see the work elsewhere. That would solve a lot of problems actually. But I know I am just like that and want the info all at hand in one place. I can't even remember where some of my paintings are or if they are available. I am trying to figure out how to get everything neatly into one place so people can find out what they need conveniently. You will be the first to know if I find a magic "app" for that.

Thank you for reading. :-)

Now - the above paintings appeared here earlier in a not quite finished state. These are the final versions and are on their way to Dallas for December.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The Grand Salon

24x36 oil on linen

Available in Dallas at the upcoming Russell Collection Presents... show.

Definitely large for me! Scaling up is hard, but overall I am pretty pleased with this painting. I did enjoy the process after all and by working in sections, the brushwork remained loose and interesting. The scene shows one of the large galleries in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC. Its one of the loveliest places to view fine art. And the collections, like this roomful of Manet, are amazing.

Wishing you and yours a wonderfully blessed Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Sun Goddess

6x6 oil on linen

Available at Randy Higbee Gallery 6" Squared show, Costa Mesa, CA

A Well Earned Rest

18x20 oil on linen

Available at Russell Collection Presents.... group show at Wisby-Smith Gallery, Dallas

First, a small study, then the larger work. Both available at 2 of the 4 shows in which my paintings will be exhibited this coming month! I have been busy, as you can imagine.

If you are in any of the following areas, you should take a look at all the great artwork being shown at various venues around the country. Give a gift of original art this season - it is something that will bring you and yours joy for years to come.

Dec. 1 - Tiny Treasures opening at Loretta Goodwin Gallery, Birmingham. AL
Dec. 2 - Holiday Show opening at Castle Gallery, Fort Wayne, IN
Dec. 3 - 6" Squared reception at Randy Higbee Gallery, Costa Mesa, CA
Dec. 9 - Russell Collection Presents...reception Wisby-Smith, Dallas TX

I wish I could attend them all, but will only be able to go to the Russell Collection show in Dallas. I will have 10 paintings in that show. Will post them here in the coming days!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Corridor of Art

18x14 oil on linen

Available soon at Tidewater Gallery.

My poor friends. Everywhere we go, they might be subject to posing for me and end up in a painting. This is my dear friend Tess, who attends lots of arty things with me. Here we were at the McNay Art Museum in San Antonio. The collection is quite nice and part of the museum space is in the founder's beautiful early 1900's Spanish Colonial home.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Moses Botkin Monthly Challenge

Well - this was hard to try to depict - Wisdom. I love the idea of an older person like Suzanne painted (beautifully) and the wonderful idea of finding guidance in the good book, or in nature.
I went with the idea of learning from the past... the best way I could depict it was representing a visit to a working pioneer farm near us. It was a stretch, I know.

Helping Hands
10x8 oil on panel
© Robin Cheers

Seek and You Will Find
8x6 oil on hardboard

3x4 pastel on paper
©2011 Vicki Ross

20x16 oil on canvas
©2011 Suzanne Berry

Morning Watch - The Innate Wisdom of Animals
6x6 oil on canvas
©2011 Ruth Andre

Monday, November 14, 2011

Sister's Care

8x8 oil on panel

Available at Loretta Goodwin Gallery

I've spent my morning preparing and packing six small paintings to go to Alabama to the gallery for their "Tiny Treasures" show opening December 1. I hope people are thinking of decorating their beach homes, because everything I have painted were beach scenes! Obviously a favorite subject of mine!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Chinese Dancer

6x6 oil on linen

Available at Randy Higbee Gallery 6" Squared show opening Dec. 3rd.

I had three painting accepted to show at the fall exhibit at the gallery in CA. I think its a neat concept to show paintings that are only one size. I'd love to see the opening! If you are in the Costa Mesa area, go and check it out for me. December is looking to be a busy month for my artwork. More details to follow!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

City Beat XIII

6x6 oil on panel
$100 + s/h - sold

Fun in the studio this week - but not much to show for it. Yesterday I was derailed by my chocolatier friend wanting me to design her trade show booth asap!! Needless to say, I was thrown off my balance there. Sometimes people think that because you create one kind of art, you can do ANYTHING. Well, maybe some people can, but I'm not one of them.

But I did get her something in the nick of time and I get paid in chocolate!

I continue to play with some small pieces again in between working on finalizing some larger pieces. I've learned to appreciate the process of larger works and am enjoying slowing down a little. Its all part of the learning and growing process.

Friday, November 04, 2011

Wash Day II

6x6 oil on linen
$100 + s/h

I love painting figures outside and on the lawn. Its time to contact a model to come pose for me again. Now that our weather is tolerable, it will be lovely to be out painting again.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Wash Day

6x6 oil on linen
$100 + s/hPURCHASE

I've been doing a few small format pieces to enter the Randy Higbee Gallery 6x6 contest this year. The gallery is associated with King of Frame, makers of nicely finished ready-made frames. Loretta Goodwin Gallery is also going to have a "tiny treasures" show this holiday season. I think its a great idea... and naturally I think small paintings are a great way to start a collection, give a meaningful gift or fill in a large collection. Everyone has room for one more!

Its been interesting going back to a very small format now. Its yet another challenge. The subject has to be simple enough to be doable on a small scale, and I find that its better if its not too subtle in color. Its been good practice in seeing and putting down color notes, and not fussing too much.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Chinatown Market

16x12 oil on linen

Available at Loretta Goodwin Gallery

You got a glimpse of this painting below on one of the pages of the book. It was a really busy painting... and I worked on it for a couple of days. As usual, I didn't like having to work on it a long time and felt like it got bogged down and heavy. But after some time away and looking at it with fresh eyes, I really liked the results. Working "bigger" is definitely out of my comfort zone. I am finding that I have a very small comfort zone. ;-)

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Looking Back...

I've finally made a little book of my most favorite paintings from the past 3 years. "Looking Back... The Artist's Favorite Paintings" is an 8x10 book featuring 42 paintings from 2009-2011. It is available on Blurb and can be ordered in softcover, hardcover with a dust jacket or hardcover with image wrap. Enjoy!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Masters Exhibit

12x12 oil on panel

Available at Loretta Goodwin Gallery

I sent this and 5 other new works to the gallery for their Fall Open House which is today. I wish I could be there. This week has been chock full - culminating with a Girl Scout campout this weekend. I'm excited that our weather is turning cooler so it will be a lovely weekend in Zilker Park.

I've added the new paintings to my Loretta Goodwin page - linked over there on the right - if you want to see all the new pieces. I find the blog easier to update with all my gallery works so people can see what's currently available. My website is a disappointment at the moment.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Moses Botkin Monthly Challenge

This month it was my turn to pick our challenge! I thought it would be good to paint from a grayscale photo reference - but in color. The idea is to use the black and white photo to gauge your values as you choose color. You can see that for some reason, I gravitated to the purple and green again - just like the paintings in my last two posts! I have to put those colors aside - and yesterday I consciously kept them off my palette.
This was a good exercise. If you get your values correct and have a good composition, then you can really paint any color scheme you want and the painting will work.

Summer Chores
11x14 oil on panel
©2011 Robin Cheers

Below I thought I'd show my painting next to my photo reference. You can see that I did not get dark enough on the sheet in shadow or the shadow on the ground. But overall I did pretty well.

And here are the paintings done by my brave challenge cohorts. I think most enjoyed it. :-)

Fresh Sheets
14x11 watercolor on Aquaboard
©2011 Vicki Ross

It's A Wash
8x6 oil on canvas
©2011 Ruth Andre

10x8 oil on hardboard
©2011 Diana Moses Botkin

8x10 oil on canvas
©2011 Sharman Owings

16x20 oil on canvas
©2011 Suzanne Berry

Friday, October 14, 2011

Park Shade - WIP

18x18 oil on canvas

I've been struggling this week and I'm not sure I like this either. I definitely don't like the blue in the foreground. How did that get there?
When I sat this and the other one (below) aside next to another painting I did this week, there is an interesting, and previously unnoticed theme going on in my work from this past week. Check my blog tomorrow to see what I mean - and see our monthly challenge group pieces too!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Park Avenue - WIP

16x24 oil on linen - work in progress

I've been trying to paint a little larger lately. I've been working on this since last week. I've finally covered the linen now (its just a large piece taped up and not mounted yet.) I so much like to work alla prima and get the idea out at once... working larger means I can't do it all in one session. Which means the brushwork becomes a little more labored, less spontaneous; and my initial enthusiasm fades, which means I grow to hate the painting by the time I decide its done (or give up). I am going to look at this one a little longer and see what it says to me next week. Maybe its done, maybe not.

I do want to keep trying to paint some larger works though, i just need to figure out how to scale up. I think there is an art to it - to still be able to suggest and mass things in but not have the whole thing appear messy. It requires a balance of spontaneous brush work and quiet areas. And I need to figure out how to "suggest" things rather than describing everything just because the image is larger.

What's funny, is that this isn't that large! (baby steps)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Prep Work

18x18 oil on linen - sold

I don't know what has happened to me in the last two weeks, but I think I have too many irons in the proverbial fire. This was done a week or so ago. I don't think I posted it yet.

Last week kinda fell apart, and I learned to not schedule so much! Between hair cuts, drs., early release from school, girl scouts, tea with friends, etc. I just didn't get to focus on artwork. Its amazing how fast your schedule can fill if you aren't careful!

I'm an involved parent too so I have to really balance things carefully. The art has to be top priority between 9-2 basically. My work so far this week has been less than stellar and I've mostly put final touches on pieces and prepared them for framing. Lets hope I can do better tomorrow and finish the week on a high note.

Friday, September 16, 2011

A Day with Degas

12x12 oil on panel

Available next month at Loretta Goodwin Gallery.

Feeling a little, I don't know, ennui? Maybe I just like that word. Anyway, I turned to something contemplative today. I am pleased with the looseness, the variety of color and brush stoke I worked in here. Its not perfect, but my goal isn't realism, right? I was listening to a Dan McCaw interview this morning on Artists Helping Artists and he talked about painting "past the likeness" and other ideas for expressing your individuality. His book is wonderful, by the way.

This photo is too light, the painting is a little more muted and a shade more cozy than this appears - but when I try to adjust the photo, the red becomes too vibrant.

The scene might be one of my favorite rooms in The Met. Full of Degas' paintings and his beautiful little dancer proudly taking center stage. When you enter it from the main gallery, its really quite striking.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Moses Botkin Monthly Challenge

Grab your pearls and put on your party dress! This was a fun challenge. I had to try a couple of different set ups and dresses, the first being a pale pink that was really difficult to paint. Having donated my daughter's other dressy dress, (she doesn't wear ANY dresses if she can help it and I don't have any party clothes) I ended up painting a Halloween costume which has a renaissance feel to it. It was fun. Might be something I want to paint again.

Faire Dress
16x12 oil on panel
©2011 Robin Cheers

12x6 oil on canvas
©2011 Ruth Andre

Party Dress on the Beach
9x12 pastel on paper
©2011 Vicki Ross

That Party Dress
24x18 oil on canvas
©2011 Suzanne Berry

New Dress
10x12 oil on hardboard
©2011 Diana Moses Botkin
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