Wow, was I excited when I got an email from FASO (fine art studios online) that this painting was included in July's favorite 15%! It's not a prize but it was exciting anyway. Just thought I would share my excitement.
Wednesday, 24 August 2016
My son was here for the past couple of weeks and we put in a water garden with a waterfall.............something that I have wanted for as long as I can remember. I now have six goldfish and one koi (all tiny). I painted it yesterday but it didn't come out very well and I wiped it down. The light is pretty changeable and I'm certain there will be a learning curve since it's such different subject matter for me. I have recently been studying Sorolla's garden paintings and, though my little spot can't compare, I am really in love with the entire concept.
This painting is one that I have been working on in the studio - it's 20" square and I'm making progress. The striped back of the dress has been challenging to say the least but I really didn't want to just paint it solid and give up since I found the stripes so illuminating for the form of the woman......it's been a balancing act back and forth between the planes and the stripes but I felt like I got somewhere today - scraping and reevaluating the values.
Tuesday, 2 August 2016
I am almost done with this painting but something bugs me about it - I'll have to put it on the wall until I figure out what that might be. There are always things that bug me even when I think I am done but this is a little different. Really, I'm chafing at the heat and want to go outside to paint again so maybe I am just cranky! Even the poor garden can't take much more - despite watering every day. I've taken to looking at all of the old-timers' gardens around here (St. Helena Island is a very agricultural spot) and don't feel too badly since all that seems to be doing well in the fields is okra (which I didn't plant this year).
Saturday, 23 July 2016
I know that's a weird title for a blog post but after trying to complete one of the paintings in my last post, I realized that I needed some practice. This painting also (in addition to way too many umbrellas for one picture) illustrates one of the things I find interesting about the beach at Hunting Island. Because of the incredible amount of erosion and zero rock, they have installed these metal barriers from the tree line way out to the lowest low tide point into the water at periodic places along the beach - these metal walls are called "groins." Coming from New England where there are plenty of rocks, I found this very strange at first, most often eliminating them from any of the paintings I do at the beach. Recently I have discovered that, because the sand seems to collect along one side of the groin and gets pulled from the other, it creates a multi-leveled beach. That is also why it appears that I have somehow buried into the sand to paint this painting. I still have a few areas that need resolution but I kind of like what I've got so far - I'm a sucker for an unusual view.
Saturday, 16 July 2016
Despite trying to paint outside this past week, I failed. Knowing that it was probably going to be impossible, I stayed close - my backyard gardens. At any rate, I have absolutely no idea how the farmworkers around here (and there are tons of them) do it. Sweat was pouring into my eyes at a blinding speed so I gave up and returned to the studio to finish up a few things. The top 18" square is now on the drying wall so I can gain enough perspective and distance to see if it's done.
The painting below (24x12") has been on that wall for a pretty long time - I was (and still am) dissatisfied with the umbrella........it is better now, though. I went to the beach to walk several times this week and studied umbrellas as I did and I don't see anything glaringly wrong with it so I decided to post it anyway.............I hate it when that happens! Value (maybe) , color (probably), overworked (most definitely), everything? It will go back on the wall until enlightenment hits.
Sunday, 10 July 2016
Well, it has reached the point here this past week that one cannot really paint outside - the nighttime temps are rarely below 80 and, no matter how early you go in the morning, the heat is just brutal. So, I have been working in the studio for the past few days. This painting is obviously from a photo and you can see the remnants of the grid that I used to position the figures and the god-awful yellow underpainting that I experimented with (I keep trying this). There are two things that I really look for when I am taking photos for reference material and the most important criteria for me is an interesting connection between figures........a shape that incorporates a nice gesture not only between the figures but between the figures and their surroundings. The photo I used for this painting has that quality.
Monday, 4 July 2016
Summer is here for sure - I'm still painting outside a bunch but there are days where it is pretty impossible. Anticipating a day as brutal as yesterday was, I put the A/C on in the studio at 7:30 am. Now it's only 90 with the "real feel" of 102 (I love accuweather) and it seems nearly cool.
I thought I would post a couple of the plein air studies that I have done in the past couple of weeks. Both paintings are 16x12" and done primarily on site. The top painting was done while I was standing on one of the numerous boat landings that we have here so the air stayed a little cooler. The painting beneath was done at the Savannah Wildlife Refuge which is an absolutely awesome place to paint - since it takes me over an hour to get there I don't go as often as I should. This painting isn't finished yet since I ran out of time - I'm not certain if I'm going to back to finish it or just try to complete it from memory.