Thursday, August 29, 2013

Sleepy Dogs

watercolor pencil sketches from my sketchbook

My dogs have done a lot of this during our long hot summer - well, there is the heat as well as their age. I did these sketches a few nights ago and have no idea why the date I put on was 10-10.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Making Expressive Paintings

Time passes and I have to look at my blog first to see what I've posted.Wow! Has it been that long?

I've gotten the girl back to school. She is very excited to be a 5th grader. And I am very glad to get back to a routine and have hours of studio time. The early mornings are tough tho. 

Yesterday I met V.... for hot chocolate and painting. I started a chef scene. Will finish it today. Also, I'm shipping out some work for the Farm to Table show at DK Gallery this week. 

I continue to think a lot about my work and am considering workshops or maybe asking someone - some "master" - to mentor me and help me push through to the next level. Less representational, more expressive. But I am not sure that can be taught. I think I just have to be willing to risk messing up a good painting to create something that is great. I have to stop analyzing and correcting until the soul is gone. 

The painting below has been on my easel a month now. I like it. But there are certainly things that are incorrect or odd looking. But if I go over it and make changes, won't I tighten it up and just create another average picture?

untitled, 18x18 oil on cradled panel

If I look at Dan McCaw or Tom Balderas - two amazing expressive impressionists - their perspective is off, their figures not perfectly rendered, etc. They are still much looser than I, but I am working my way there. Slowly! And I think that is part of the secret too. Their paintings might look random and messy but they have worked very hard to create that illusion. I imagine every stroke is planned and put down and left alone.

Friday, August 02, 2013

Summer in My Backyard

I thought I'd share some pictures of my garden in full bloom. This is the "border" at the back and we back up to green space. It's a riot of color and I'm not sure the iPhone camera is doing it justice. This is my hobby. I love all the birds that come to my feeders. I have seed, suet, and mealworms for their dining pleasure. Sometimes I put out fruit but haven't seen any takers on it. Watching the birds is so much fun. 

The garden is perhaps representative of how I wish to paint. Spontaneous, eclectic, a bit wild and messy. :)

You can just see a corner of the treehouse my husband built our daughter last fall. It's very cool! And built to last a hundred years I think!

Lots of salvias, Mexican petunia and rampant plumbago. They all spread wherever they like and I let them.

The rock rose and lantana are such great colors together. A happy accident!

We had an unusual amount of rain in July and it really brought the flowers out. It's getting intensely hot now though. The plants seem to like it. 

I'd be remiss not to plug v....Vaughan's wonderful Birdseed Project! Birds make life happy.

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Off Broadway

30x24 oil on stretched linen
deep sides/unframed

Ask DK Gallery about this painting

This was fun for me. I painted a small version of this (also below 7x5) and it sold ages ago. I always considered working it again, but I have this aversion to repeating myself. I  love the play "Waiting for Godot." I've never actually seen it, but have read it. Read the Wikipedia description of it here.  Perhaps "abdsurdist" is up my alley.

I feel like some of my best works were those I did small for the blog. But I can't seem to paint that small anymore and am not sure the market is even there anymore for the small works. So maybe its time to look back at those early paintings like the interiors and cities and consider revisiting the scenes for larger works.    


I'm really excited to be showing my work in a new area at a really exciting gallery in Marietta, GA. The show opens tomorrow night and I hope the paintings are well received.
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