Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Poppies Galore!

Poppies are such cheerful and happy plants.  

"Poppies Galore" 
9 x 9 oil on carton board

Poppies are associated with
Morpheus, the God of sleep. 
I love how the bud hangs its head
almost as if sleeping,
only to wake up in a vivid orange dream! 

Happy Spring  

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Keeping Gouache Wet Outside

I brought my gouache to a friend's beach house yesterday
to experiment with it outdoors.

"Sea Wall"
gouache study on bristol board

My friend Gail Sauter shared this info on Facebook 
so I stopped at the Dollar Store and bought some micro fiber cloths. 
(they didn't have the sponges)
I wet them and put my palette paper on top 
inside a tupperware box with a lid. 
that I put on whenever I wasn't painting. 

I managed to do three small quick studies on paper and 
the left over paint was still wet!  

My set -up and the view! 

My goal is to see things more simply and 
I'm finding gouache helps me do that. 

Thursday, May 19, 2016

On Rejection

It's Juried Show time and emotions are high. 
I think it's a good time to remind ourselves of a few things: 
Everyone gets rejected. It's part of the process. 
The decision simply means that your art 
was not appealing to that judge. 
Nothing more.
Remind yourself why you are doing your art
and continue the journey.  

Here's a great article I recently read on getting rejected on the 

"Pink Sheets"
24 x 36 

"Burst of Light" 
12 x 9 

I took a gamble recently and submitted two of my newer works,
done this winter during my semester at Mass Art. 
They were both rejected.
That said,  I'm excited about the direction these are going 
and look forward to where ever I'm going!    
And that's what it's all about.  

I say;
Paint on! 

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Developing Paintings Further

I had a couple hours in the studio Sunday morning  
and wanted to paint something from life,  
so I put a bucket of poppies and sunflowers 
on the counter in front of a sunny window.

"Poppies in the Studio"
8 x 8 quick oil study  
on carton board

In an effort to develop my paintings further, 
I worked on it some more today. 

Poppies in Studio

I dulled down the objects in the front,
made the window lighter
and played with a pallet knife,
all the while overthinking every move. 

My goal is to learn how to re-visit paintings
 without loosing that 
the initial excitement 
of the moment.

Not easy. 

Sunday, May 15, 2016

A Lot of Starts

I'm finding that doing small studies
on paper helps me see the big spots of color better. 
I did this the other day looking out the window of my studio. 

 6 x 7 oil on paper 

Another Hawthorne-ism:

"Make a lot of starts."

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Gouache plein air

Curious about how 
gouache studies would work outdoors,
I finally attempted it today.

"The Courtyard"
9 x 7 gouache on paper 

I got out my half Julian 
and used a clip board to hold the paper.

I had to work quickly and 
I had leftover paint so I turned the easel 
to the right and painted this. 

"The Hill"
9 x 7 gouache on paper

I found the way gouache dries 
so quickly a bit daunting, 
however you can apply layer over layer 
without anything showing through,
so that's exciting. 

That also makes it tempting to over work things,
so I'm keeping these small and quick. 

Welcome Plein Air Season! 

Monday, May 9, 2016

Falmouth Artist Guild

I had the pleasure of visiting the 
and was very impressed by the facility 
and the level of the art work displayed. 

I'll be teaching a two day "Expressive Painting"
workshop there Tues and Wed. May 24, 25 
9:30 - 3:30.

There are just a few spots left,
so come join us if you can. 
We have a lot of fun! 

Friday, May 6, 2016

Charles Hawthorne

I've been re-reading my little 
"Hawthorne on Painting"book. 

I was first exposed to his approach during  
a workshop at the 
Cape Cod School of Art in the mid 90's.
It was the beginning of my painting journey.  

Re-visiting his teachings now,
20 years later
is inspiring and affirming! 

This book of notes taken by his students 
offers some priceless observations about painting. 

Some of my favorites: 
"To see things simply is the hardest thing in the world."

"Painting is just like making an after-dinner speech. 
If you want to be remembered, say one thing and stop."

"Spend a lifetime in hard work with a humble mind."

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Three Line Compositions

I'd heard about starting a painting 
with just three straight lines,
but never really understood it. 

we did quick 5 x 7 oil studies of large still life set ups 
on bristol board 
using three straight lines running edge to edge. 
Talk about simplifying!

I did a few small watercolor studies 
yesterday while babysitting Nico.

His first art lesson! 

Monday, May 2, 2016

Another Eye Opener

Just finished up a wonderful three day workshop
 with Kimberlee Alemian at 

Working on 30 x 40 canvases
was a real eye opener and truly exhilarating! 

The set- up:

We started out by thinly blocking in the large shapes,
then turning it upside down.

I found that confusing at first, 
but letting some of the underneath show through
can create some interesting affects.  

Some details. 

Can't wait to "try this at home"!