Sunday, December 03, 2017

Painting from the live model

In my opinion, there is no better way to develop and refine your painting than to paint from life. I spend a lot of time painting still life pieces and plein air sketches to learn more about color relationships.

I also attend a weekly portrait group that has been meeting for almost twenty years in the cafeteria of a repurposed elementary school. We have the same model for four weeks so it's possible to complete a fairly detailed painting over a month's time.

This piece was done in a two hour session and I touched it up at home using a cell phone photo.

9" x 12" oil on linen, Hope

Friday, November 17, 2017

Portrait Exchange

It's that time of year again-- time for the Wet Canvas portrait exchange, and I believe this is my eleventh year of participation! Maybe the last. This year I painted E. Shubert from Jacksonville, FL.

It was a fun painting even though he used a cell phone selfie- not really the best reference. I made the most of it and emphasized the cool light coming in the from the left.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Painting a Still Life e Plein Air

On the final day of this event I searched for, and found, some shade in an alley in the middle of town. An antique store allowed me to set up near their entrance and gave me water and coffee too. Country music playing in the background and lots of observers added to the festive atmosphere.

I didn't finish the painting but I enjoyed the day and sometimes that's good enough. Unfortunately, it was another warm day and although the event was well-publicized, the wet paint sale didn't attract a whole lot of visitors so I left as soon as the awards were announced. And no-- I didn't win anything! :-)

Monday, October 09, 2017

Second Day of Painting in Converse

I painted a well-known landmark--a Shell gas station on Route 18, the second day I was in Converse. The home across the street had just been sold and the owner granted permission to set up my easel on their property, which offered a nice shady place to paint.

Sunday, October 08, 2017

Plein Air in Converse, Indiana

I joined the Indiana Plein Air Painters this year and this is the third paintout I've attended. Held in Converse, Indiana, this paintout was sponsored by a number of small businesses in the town of Converse.

I had never heard of Converse before I visited it for this event but I left with a positive feeling.

Unseasonably warm weather arrived with the first day of fall, and coincided with the paintout, titled "The First Brush of Fall". The 90 degree weather was not exactly conducive to plein air painting but that's part of the challenge when you enter a plein air event: you must be prepared for everything- even pouring down rain.

I painted a pastel of a farm on the first day and made the mistake of standing in the sun because that's where the best view was! It was the first time I'd used pastels in the field and I was not too happy with the support I used-- a handmade board primed with a mixture of gesso and marbledust. I think I should have sanded it.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Pet Portraits

I made time for a couple of pet portraits in August too. I was able to photograph the chihuahua myself -which is always helpful when you're doing a painting. I was struck by how delicate and tiny she was. This is a 9" x 12" painting but she is about life size--weighing in at three pounds.

Panda, a shih tzu from Columbus, was another project I worked on and his owner was very happy with the painting, which included a detailed background.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Speed Painting

A Quick Pear study-- Yes I have a pear tree and it is bearing fruit-- which I love. You can learn a lot from spending an hour painting from life- set a timer it helps.
6" x 8"

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Still Life with Pears and Copper Kettle

Still Life with Pears and Copper Kettle

Painted at Lakeside during a still life class I taught in August. I love the glass reflections and of course pears are my favorite fruit to paint.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Plein Air Painting in a Park

11" x 14" oil on panel

The second plein air session with my group of student painters was held in another park-- one with beautiful ponds-- George Bible Park in Bryan, Ohio.

Saturday, September 09, 2017

Flower Painting

I am working with some beginner and intermediate painters, teaching them a little about plein air painting. We get together when we can and paint. The first time we painted in a public park with lots of gorgeous flowers, so the natural choice for me to paint was flowers.

Central Park Flowers
9" x `12" oil on panel

Friday, September 08, 2017

August Paintings

I'm finally getting around to posting art I created in August and late July. It was a busy month- perhaps not so much as far as art creation goes- but in other aspects of my life. I started a new position at LE Smith working in the marketing dept., and I taught for two weeks at Lakeside, Ohio.

Here are some photos from the two weeks I spent teaching art at Lakeside, Ohio, Marblehead.

Painting a cottage
 Still Life Painting in Oils
 Working on his cottage painting- yes 12 year olds can paint
 Fancy Dog Paintings
 Portrait Drawing -- a full class
 Let's Draw Dogs!
 Let's Draw Cats!

Friday, July 28, 2017

Great Dane Portrait

My son has a Harlequin Great Dane named Khloe who is nine years old and I painted this piece from a photo he sent me that was taken when she was five. She's a sweet, gentle dog with a queenly air. When she walks into a room or anywhere, for that matter, people notice her.

Khloe 11" x 14"
oil on canvas

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Watercolor with a Quick Turnaround

A realtor in Dallas who has ordered paintings from me before called to see if she could get a quick turnaround on an oil painting--one day! Unfortunately, I can't guarantee an oil painting will dry in one day; usually it takes several days. So I offered to paint a watercolor for her instead, and matted and framed it for the same price an oil would cost.

8" x 10" matted to 11" x 14"

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Green Gables at Lakeside

This is my favorite painting from the weekend at Lakeside, a view of the porch at the Lakeside Women's Club or Green Gables. I rented a room there Friday night. In the morning I painted and drank coffee while the lake breeze kept the humidity in check.

9" x 12" oil on linen

Monday, July 17, 2017

Lakeside, Ohio Plein Air Event

Friday through Sunday I was in Marblehead, where I attended the Lakeside Plein Air Festival and Wooden Boat Show. This is a beautiful area of Northwest  Ohio, perhaps one of the better kept secrets in Ohio. I painted three new pieces and showed them, along with many from previous years, at the Plein Air Show on Sunday. Sales were brisk at the show and the organizers ran out of sales slips.
Below is Reagan, who stopped to admire my work and helped me paint some waves on the lake.

Sunday, April 02, 2017

Still Life with Pears and Blueberries

9" x 12" oil on canvas
It's still a bit too rainy and cold to paint outside here in Northwest Ohio, so I painted one of my standard go-to subjects: pears. Painting from life produces fresh paintings with lovely lost edges.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Big Sable Light House - Michigan

This is Big Sable Lighthouse, a landmark in the state of Michigan. It was the subject of a recent painting class.

11" x 14" oil on canvas

Monday, February 13, 2017

Alla Prima Portrait Painting

Our model last Saturday was a thirteen year old named Mae-Lin who posed in a chef hat with a bowl.
9" x 12" oil on linen

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Tea and Biscuits- oil painting

A small 8" x 10" oil painting of an antique teacup and saucer with some (very delicious) homemade cookies.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Ohio State Murals

Last week I painted a couple murals, one of Woody Hayes, another of Ezekiel Elliott, in a 'man cave' for a client in Michigan. Yeah- he was born in Ohio, but he still lives in Michigan, and loves his Buckeyes apparently.

These are acrylic paint and measure about 52" x 42".

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Pet Portrait

When your dog passes away and you want to get your wife a painting of him, but you realize you never really took any good pictures with a camera BUT you have a cell phone photo.

This is the worst case scenario, but it is workable, due to Google having hundreds of images of dogs that resemble yours just in case the image you have is missing a leg or the top of the dog's head etc.

Seriously, if you think you might want to commission a painting of your dog (or your wife, or your cat), at some future date, take a nicely lit photo of the subject outside in the shade.

This is a Labradoodle, I think. Maybe a Goldendoodle. He didn't really say. But I liked working life size.

16" x 20"
Oil on canvas

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

A Beginning Portrait Class at The Armory Arts & Events Center in Napoleon

I taught a brief workshop on portrait painting last Sunday at The Armory Arts & Events Center in Napoleon, Ohio. We started out sketching front and side views using Andrew Loomis' well-known techniques for creating a 'normal' face. Of course everyone varies form normal somewhat- that's what makes us all unique individuals.

After a bit of drawing practice we moved right into painting and I chose an American Indian as our subject. The photo reference was black and white, which simplified the values. Their skin tones are more even than Caucasians and (I think), easier to mix. Using a simple recipe of burnt sienna, ultramarine blue and titanium white, we were able to come up with a pretty wide variety of tones. Throwing in a bit of cadmium red easily warmed the mixtures where needed.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Oglethorpe County Courthouse, Georgia

This piece is a commission I did for a client who will give it to her mother in law, who served as a judge there for 30 years. This courthouse had some distinctive arches around the windows. More and more, I find myself very thankful for resources like Google when people send me blurry cell phone pictures.

I used the client's photo but changed the season to spring and cleaned up the landscaping.

20" x 24" oil on canvas

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Napoleon Barn

We painted this Napoleon landmark at The Armory Arts & Event Center Thursday night. Will probably have another class in two or three weeks. PM me if you are interested. I demo as we paint and finished up the edges on this on tonight. I love the teal color of this building and the hot peach roof- just a gorgeous scenic barn. I'm hoping to do a plein air of it on location this summer. 

11x14 oil on canvas