Friday, October 22, 2010

I've been remiss

Whatever my excuse, I've been remiss in keeping up my blog. My intent was to keep a running record of my paintings and that I've failed to do. This post is an attempt to begin to catch up a bit. I only managed two paintings while in Colorado this year, but that's because the trip was all about re-finishing the exterior of my mother-in-law's log cabin and not about relaxing and painting. We did an amazing amount of work on the cabin which is now ready to weather the winter in much better shape than it was last year. The first painting I did up there was the other side of Redstone. Patty and I drove out that way to escape the noise and fumes from the new stain being put on the logs. We stopped at a lovely spot along the road next to a river and I set up and painted this view of Chair Mountain. It didn't look much like a chair to me, but that's what it is called.
The other painting from Colorado was the view on the western side of the house looking towards the farm on the next piece of property. It's a lovely peaceful view with the light shining off the top of the silos. I called it "Nestled Farm" because it looks nestled in the valley with the hills surrounding it.

I went with some of the Plein Air Austin painters to participate in the Round Rock Chalk Walk Festival a couple of weekends ago. We had been invited to come as the festival was all about art of many kinds. While there we were encouraged to hang a few pieces in the new art center gallery. They had a whole wall set up with PAA paintings very nicely displayed. I set up on the main street near the gallery and painted an old building and the water tower across the street from me. I called this one "Downtown". It was painted in Round Rock but could pass for almost any small Texas town.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Channeling Georgia?

I set out this morning to do something I never do. Create a large pastel abstract. I had no idea what I would do when I started out. I just grabbed a large sheet of pastel paper, my largest pastels and started playing with it. My color scheme was somewhat limited by the large pastels I had on hand, but I did supplement a bit with some regular sized pastels. I was surprised by what came out of it. A very colorful somewhat Georgia O'Keefe-ish painting. This was a major departure for me. I usually know exactly what I'm going to paint when I start, and I never use a whole large sheet of paper on one painting - I simply don't paint large. It was strange after the first few marks were down everything just flowed. I new exactly where to go with it even if I didn't know what "it" was. Just another exercise in stretching my horizons - but I thoroughly enjoyed it. I must learn to do it more often. Sometimes when I try something new it just lands in the trash bin, but this one I may hang onto to remind myself to try something new from time to time.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Portrait on Demand

Friday a friend at worked asked if I thought it might be possible to do a portrait of her for her upcoming 50th birthday in 2 weeks. Yikes! I haven't done a portrait in quite some time. She had seen the small oil portrait I had done for a mutual friend of her recently departed father, painted using the funeral program photo as my reference since I had not met the gentleman in life. It turned out fairly successful and his daughter was very pleased with it. Presented with a very small photo on the birthday party invitation, I thought I'd take a stab at it in pastel since my pastel work tends to take less time and lately has been more successful. (I know I haven't posted anything in almost a year, but that doesn't mean I've been totally idle - I've been plugging away in pastel and oils - even taking a wonderful 3-day plein air workshop last weekend with Chuck Rawle and assorted PAA members). This morning I got up, guzzled some coffee and printed out the photo small and then enlarged to about the size I thought I should paint it. After a couple of false starts I decided on a piece of dark blue Canson paper. Several hours in, I was beginning to like it. I took a break for lunch and laundry and then got back to it for a couple more hours. Now I was really thinking I'd nailed it fairly well. I went off to visit Mom for a while. Back at the easel I decided to check a few measurements - oops! I was way off on a couple. Time to adjust and rework. Now I really am beginning to like it. Even Steve (my toughest critic) seems to think I got it. What do you think?