Saturday, June 30, 2007

June 30 - Editing and Some News

I have spent about 16 hours editing the DVD today. This is the grunt work--details about scene changes, putting the clips in order and lining them up for the changes between the palette and the canvas, without compromising the audio. Fun, but I get tired of listening to myself! There are some funny outtakes and the plein air footage came out crackerjack!

The other news is that I have placed almost all of the horse paintings on ebay, in my "store". If you click here, you'll go directly there, and perhaps see some artwork that has been hidden deeply on the other web site to add to your collection. If you go there on your own, just search on my name. Alberto has been working to bring all the web site's artwork to the ebay store.

The image you see today is an acrylic I did that never made it to the web site--it sold as I was finishing it, at the Cattlemen's Western Art Show in Paso Robles. It was a 12 x 12. I think it was a good one because the horse, rider and pack horse are secondary focal points behind the waterfalls.

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Friday, June 29, 2007

June 29 - Plein Air with Acrylics!

The final footage of the Acrylic Painting Lessons DVD was finished up this morning when I went on location with Vincent van Goat carrying the supplies up into the brush behind the studio. The end result is this 6 x 8 acrylic view of the riparian habitat where UCR students spend many hours researching. I shared how I work with acrylic paints when outdoors and on location with the camera running. It sure was a good trial--the weather was reaching up to the 90s, and dry winds buffeted the easel. The pill boxes of paint did just fine, and Vincent's goat bell clanged throughout as he munched the vegetation.

And here's my cameraman Alberto, bearing with me in the bright light and heat to capture the footage on location today. What a great help! That little Sony digital camera has sure earned its keep, too!
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Thursday, June 28, 2007

June 28 - Not exactly a painting....but art related!

You get to see it first, the layout of the new cover for the Acrylic DVD! I haven't decided which of the three paintings will be featured on the cover, but right now these two newer ones hold sway. I hope you enjoy it! Now back to editing so I can have the master finished and begin taking orders. Whew. Long hours in the "saddle" of digital editing! More last minute filming tomorrow morning, and then... (crosses fingers)... the master will be done!

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

June 27 - A New Commission Begins, Going to the Dogs

A new commission is in my hands, a large, 30 x 40 inch oil of three dogs, Maggie, Buddy and Sydney, positioned in a landscape. The owner writes: " I think I want something between realistic and impressionistic. I know I want a light and bright painting. I think the mountains need to be somewhat smoky with a beautiful bright blue sky. I would like to feel pulled into the far scene as if it is a window to an incredibly peaceful place. I would like the season to be summer with the eye first drawn to my dogs in the forward scene, and then led to the long scene behind it. Will you be able to show me a sketch as you plan the painting?
My living room walls are a medium shade of gold. My furniture has shades of brown and sage green, anchored by a beautiful oriental rug of many colors. I also have accents of brick red and gold."

And so the communication begins. All the details about price and projected timeline are in place, and now the sketching for structure in the overall design of the painting comes out. Today you see the first rough idea...I can work on this slowly while I work hard on the final digital editing!

I have been reminded that the duplication of my "Two Trees" painting is not a print, but a reproduction, and I stand corrected. It is true, a print is an artform (Emile Nolde is pointing a finger at me! A good site for the German printmakers, by the way is here). Alberto named the Epson 4000 "Wilma", and is tenderly coercing her into making beautiful repros for me. She keeps humming along, making the 50 reproductions of the painting, and I'm already planning more work for Wilma with the "Lesson Cat" from the JAVMA Journal's April cover.

And the votes for yesterday's painting came in equally for the first and second one (the greenish one) and the gray one coming in third. The high contrast one fell a distant fourth. Thanks for your feedback!

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

June 26 - Found Another Acrylic, and had some fun with it...

While working on inventorying my collection, Alberto discovered one that has not been on the web site, and whick I've used over the past couple years to experiment using those handmade papers. Here it is, a 24 x 30 of draft horses in backlighting. The handmade papers create the overall texture on this one, and in this version it is decent, if not ground shaking.

Now I've taken it into Photoshop and done some color management, seeing what it looks like with some color shifts. In this version, I played down the color intensities, and shifted the colors over to the grayer side. Do you like this one better?

Then I shifted it over to the greener side, which makes more of a summer morning out of it. I kept the sky colors intact for the most part. Maybe you prefer these colors?

But that was not the finish. I decided that I needed more drama and contrast, so again I Photoshopped the image and punched it up as another experiment. Maybe this one appeals to the majority? In any event, Photoshop or its equivalent can allow you as it does me, to experiment and see what possible directions to go in with a work in progress!

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Monday, June 25, 2007

June 25 - The Quest, Acrylic DVD painting Finished!

Yippee!!! This 16 x 20 canvas is where I can call it finished--I especially love the way the values point out the light on this one. The filming production on this phase is done, and now I have two short segments to film tomorrow, and then stitch all the clips together into the Acrylic DVD (Final Cut Pro)! Wow! I'm actually going to meet my deadline to have it ready for shipment the first week in July!

I'm just pleased as punch at how this one turned out, especially since I combined three references to make the composition. Being an artist is so much fun!

On another note, Alberto's been working hard updating my ebay store, adding some of the horse paintings! I'm fortunate that he knows computers and can take some of the work off my shoulders so I can finish this project. He begins his master's program this fall, but says he'll still work for me when I need it. I appreciate what he is doing for me. Today we also got the Epson 4000 up and running, because I have a print run of my painting "Two Trees" for a fundraiser for the group in Ventura County fighting to preserve the hillsides in their natural state. I support projects like this when I can.

And having the Epson on line again, I can make prints of the cat painting "Lesson Cat" that was on the April issue of the Journal of American Veterinary Medicine for those folks who wanted a print of that one. Busy busy!!

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Sunday, June 24, 2007

June 24 - Uncle Willy for the Acrylic Lessons DVD

Ho ho ho! Uncle Willy comes to town! Here he is, monacle and moustache, and just a little 8 x 10 canvas, showing the variances of using acrylics as a collage/assemblage medium! I always have such fun when I pull out the stops to create thees silly, whimsical characters with acrylics. Full of yarn, handmade paper, feathers and gold pseudo leaf, this is just a hoot to create! Acrylics are SO versatile!

Yesterday several of you commented about the possibility of hemp leaves! in the handmade paper. Well, there's a joke for you, I guess Uncle Willy is a hippy! Those layers are no longer visible in this image. I worked some more on him, so he has a different look now, and will be featured in the DVD on Acrylic Painting that is falling off my brushes!
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