Saturday, November 03, 2007

November 3 - Moonlight on the Chapel, U of Redlands

Original acrylic, 8 x 5 inches, on board. One of the nice things about painting on location is the freedom one has to interpret what is "out there" and make a decent expression of the mood, the effects of light, and to add one's personal statement.

"There I was, painting on location, with about a dozen others in the same area...." Each one of us painting a familiar scene, yet uniquely our own end result. Me, on a sunny afternoon, decided to change what was in front of me to a moonlight scene. With the Color System, all I did was close the lids on four of the pigments, and paint away, keeping my values fairly close to one another, and focusing on the focal point's facade to convey night time.

Here's the actual view during the day, to give you an idea of how much freedom I expressed in changing the time of day and the composition. Being able to move away from "what's out there" to my own artistic expression is the most freeing thing for me as an artist. No longer constrained to the limits of photography, or on location sites, I can begin to exercise my unique vision in pigment. What does it take? Miles of canvas, a willingness to make mistakes for the purpose of learning, and belief in one's ability to have a fresh vision on ordinary subjects. And miles of canvas. Did I already say miles of canvas? Oh, senior moment! Miles of canvas. Paint. Paint more. And then paint more. No shortcuts in this business, sorry!

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Friday, November 02, 2007

November 2 - University of Redlands Browsing Room

Here's one of the acrylic paintings I did as part of the Centennial Celebration of the University of Redlands. They had almost 100 plein air artists painting around the campus for a week--unfortunately during the wildfires when the smoke was so bad that we had advisories to "stay indoors". I took that to heart and went to the Hall of Letters to one of the most unique "classrooms" on the campus. Lined with bookshelves, it also has two stained glass windows that were installed in the 1950s, which depict a knight and a prioress. Home of senior seminars, and many a student presentation, HL213 is now forever captured on canvas. It is a 12 x 16 acrylic on board, and when the Dean whose office is in that building saw it--she bought it!

It also won an award at the opening reception, judged by John Budicin, past president of the Plein Air Painters of America. Nice to know that there is some flexibility in what we paint "outdoors". And I was able to save my lungs for another day's painting later in the week.

Here's a photograph of the painting, on the wall at the showing of all the artist's paintings, complete with ribbon. I had two of them, both sold, and both in this image. Can you guess which is my "other" painting?

The word is back on the Three Dogs painting: "Elin,it is beautiful!!! We are so excited about it and can't wait to hang it in our living room..I especially love the way the yellow lab looks. I think she stands out because she is looking at the viewer. I didn't think about that aspect when we were planning the portrait. All three of them look simply divine! Well done Elin!!"

Now I can rest. Thanks for letting me visit with you!

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Thursday, November 01, 2007

November 1 - Three Dog Commission Finished!

It has been a long time for this painting, and not my usual time frame, but this one is now 95% finished, and I've sent out this image to the collectors for their comments and (hopefully) approval of what is done so far. I'm pleased with it!

It is an oil, 30 x 50 inches, and has kept my studio out of order while I painted it on the wall. My Hughes easel has been in the middle of the room, and it pouts there while I walk over to the wall to paint. It is good to be able to see the finish on this one and to share with you the plein air paintings tomorrow and this week that have been waiting for this commission to finish!

Now with the new construction on the outer studio, with a new eight-foot tall sliding door letting in north light, I'm so excited about the upcoming workshops here! The February one is full, but there's a new one in March that still has space.

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Podcasts of many of the daily paintings are now available on iTunes and YouTube! Just put in my name for a search.