Thursday, June 28, 2012

Wet paint: Help with a title?

I might touch up a few spots, but here's what I have so far.

11x14, oil on canvas

This is Morris & Main Street, Richmond. 

I'm thinking something like "Evening over Morris" or "Last light"... Please leave a note if you have an idea for a title. I'll be post which title I decide to go with. 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Yes, those are my toes.

A few from the sketchbook. I'm loving the curves and squiggles in these tree trunks/branches. It's really remarkable the variety of growth patterns in the trees.

coffee wash, graphite

slicci pen, chalk pastel

Thursday, June 21, 2012

A Green Monster

The color green.

Love it and hate it.

It's the color of summer, life, growth, strength. It's very appealing in a small piece, but quickly gets tricky to handle in larger pieces. And by larger pieces I mean anything over 11x14. :)  

Here's a snapshot of two of my works-in-progress.

Green and green...

Theo always wants to get in on the camera action.

And lets me know he has a green rope toy, too.

Back to the point. Stapleton Kerns wrote a timely article on how to deal with the greens of the summer landscape. Wonderful, wonderful article.

Fantastic bit on smuggling red into your paintings: 
Good color in landscape painting often calls for recognizing the role various reds have in the color notes of the painting. There's a story about a venerable New England painter who taught a lot of workshops. At the end of a long day he would run up and down the line of students, outside at their easels when he was tired and he would just say to each of them "more red, more red!" It sounds silly but it was more than a joke, because it WAS good advice. Almost every learning painter fails to get enough red into a painting. I try to weave a lot of it in as it steps on all of those greens that are so annoyingly It also takes the electric look out of a sky and keeps shadow notes from being too icy. Red is a wonder product!
I love how Steven Goodman paints his greens. There is always a bit of "pure" green, but the majority of the greens tend toward yellow, orange, blue or brown. I get that hot summer green feel from some of his works.

Today I'm painting reds, yellows and blues into my greens.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Blue Ridge

This was a fun piece. Tried to capture the "day" -- overcast, but still vibrant. VA is beautiful.

Blue Ridge
16x20, oil on canvas

Monday, June 18, 2012


It's been a while since I've posted from my sketchbook. Most my recent sketches have been prep work for paintings & commissions. Gotta get back into the groove of sketching for pure fun. It gets the right side of the brain going.

Well, here's what I got:

We vacationed in Kitty Hawk with my side of the family again this year. Vacations are wonderful for the sketchbook. No to-do list, no big canvases... just what I can carry in a backpack and just a snippet of time to get something down on paper between throwing the football or swimming in the waves. 

My sis.

Degas' Little Dancer at the VMFA, pencil & coffee wash. 
No, the coffee wash was not applied at the the museum. :)

Love a good tree trunk.

Mark's grandfather + a lion. 

My mother-in-law. Tried to get her when she wasn't looking at what I was doing.

The in-law's old pup.

I'll probably play around with this one more.

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Agecroft Windows

11x14, oil on canvas

Mom, Grammie & I had a lovely time touring a local Tudor-style manor house-turned-museum, Agecroft Hall, in late January. Richmond it full of little gems -- gorgeous and fascinating places to visit -- but it seems I rarely take the time to explore my own city. Agecroft was built in the 15th Century in EnglandIt was bought at auction by a Richmond couple in 1925, disassembled, shipped across the Atlantic and reassembled in the beautiful Winsor Farms neighborhood, just off Cary Street. The tour guide gave us quite a fun tour & history lesson. She mentioned that glass, being hand blown, was expensive to make. Windows were an expression of the homeowner's wealth.
These casement-style windows looked out over the James. Loved the combination of textures and colors contained in one beautiful piece of architecture -- the wattle & daub siding, the brick, the windows, even the drain spout & gutters.

Below are a few other shots from that day. The gardens weren't in bloom, being January.

Friday, June 1, 2012

A House Portrait

12x16, oil on canvas

This was a commission from last month. I love the patterns of light and the gorgeous greens & yellows of early spring in this house portrait. 

Hope you are enjoying the colors and warmth of spring!
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