Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Pattern Painting

I've been playing around with the idea of 
"Pattern Painting" lately. 
It refers to the Japanese woodblock prints introduced in Paris in 1890 
that heavily influenced the impressionist painters;
Mary Cassatt, Degas,Vuillard, Bonnard etc. 
Peggi Kroll Roberts has a great DVD on this. 

 The idea is to create an exciting design using 
just line and flat shapes in the local color.
No modeling the form with light and shadow. 

"Cabana Gals"
8 x 10 

That is harder than you'd think, and a great challenge. 
Notice how I forgot and put the "light" 
on the striped shirt and blue shorts! 

This is the complicated reference photo I used!
Had to re-arrange the legs a bit. 

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Alex Katz Prints

I finally got to see the Alex Katz show at the MFA this week.  
His work has always amazed me. 
His ability to simplify his subjects and create intriguing compositions,
 takes "saying a lot with a little" to whole new heights! 

Woodcuts and screen prints are the perfect medium 
for this approach, and it's a great lesson in simplification. 
I used to do a lot of silk screening in college.
I remember the inks were very toxic. 
Does anyone do that anymore? 

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Ice Cream Man!

"Ice Cream Man!"
12 x 16 

We recently stayed at a resort on Cape Cod where 
twice a day an "Ice Cream Man" showed up at the pool. 
He would give a big bell to one small kid, 
tell them to walk around, ring the bell and yell
I managed to get this image while I was in line. 
Nothing like a good old fashioned 

(I know this doesn't look like my style of painting. 
I have no idea how or why that happened. 
It's bigger than usual and I used a large a brush?)

Monday, July 23, 2012

Lazy Day Line Up

Lazy Day Line Up
8 x 16 

The bright colors in this got me motivated 
to break out some of my left over KJ tubes of odd colors. 

Friday, July 20, 2012

A Review!

 I am pretty excited about the wonderful review of my show 
in this month's issue of Art Scope Magazine by Catherine LaFerriere.
You can read the first two paragraphs here. 
The magazine is available at all art venues; 
galleries, schools, bookstores, hotels, restaurants 
all over the Boston area. 
If you see one, pick one up! 

Sea Watch 
11 x 14 
This is the image she used.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Plein Air Pluggers

Three very brave gals came to the beach today
 for our first Tuesday gathering in a long time. 
We set up under the deck with a slight and very hot south west wind
and plugged away! 

We were all challenged by the view, to say the least.
(No real light and shadow pattern)
Summer Heat 
10 x 12 
We all agreed that scenes like this can produce what I call 
"little old lady" paintings.
Sweet and sentimental, but no real punch. 

After a few happy hours painting and catching up,
the wind died and the green heads came out. 
So we all went for a delicious swim in the ocean with Cello.

Here she is relaxing during her post swim shower! 
Meanwhile, my friend Sue recommended this book 
on landscape painting by Mitchell Albala.

I am finding it very thorough and a terrific instructional tool,
for both plein air and studio work. 
Thanks Sue! 

Monday, July 16, 2012

Heat Wave Plein Air

I'm teaching a class tomorrow and am concerned about the heat wave.
So today I set up under the deck at the beach to see if it was tolerable. 
There was a delicious off shore breeze and 
 I was amazingly comfortable, even at high noon.
Unfortunately, there was a lot of glare off the sand and water 
and it was so hot and humid, everything was shrouded in a haze. 
This is the scene I chose, because it was away from the glare. 
The challenge was how to paint this with no clear light and shadow pattern. 

Hazy, HOT, and Humid
6 x 6 
I had to keep all the values in the middle range
and cooler and lighter as they receded. 
This is not my favorite lighting situation to paint, 
but I always love a challenge. 
Can't wait to see what tomorrow will bring.   

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Cocktail Anyone?

Summer is a fun time to experiment with refreshing fun drinks. 
My son makes a great Lemon Drop Martini. 
And he was a great model for this painting! 

Cocktail Anyone? 
8 x 10 

 Hope everyone is staying cool
and enjoying some summer fun.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Hats are Back!

Hat Parade
8 x 8

I love that hats are so "in" this season. 
Especially the fedora - for men and woman. 
They look great on everyone! 
These three seemed especially proud of their new hats. 

 I kept the colors in this very muted, 
to compliment the hats.  
Soft blues and yellows....my favorite combo.  

Sunday, July 8, 2012

I Pad Painting

I finally had a chance this week to play with my new I Pad.
I bought the Brushes app, watched a 10 minute video about it 
and then did this! 

The possibilities with this are endless! 
Great for planning "real" paintings! 

OK. So I've given up the fight with technology. 

Friday, July 6, 2012

Fun Commission!

I was recently asked to do a small commission 
from a snapshot of family members playing in the ocean. 
I panicked because my figures are never "portraits". 
Fortunately, the client was familiar with my work and 
didn't want them to be recognizable. 
She just wanted me to 
"capture the joy of being in the Bahama's together as a family"
"Bahama Beauties"
8 x 8 

This is what I came up with and she was thrilled. 
Now, that is the kind of commission I love! 

Monday, July 2, 2012

Happy Birthday America!

I'll be spending the next week or so 
celebrating our nation's birthday
with family and friends.
No one does it like we do here in New England!  

"Red White and Blue"
6 x 6 

This was my entry for the GJWP challenge this month. 
A quick sketch for larger painting. 

Have a wonderful and safe holiday everyone!