Handsome, Bright, Naughty and Nice

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I guess I’m what they call a “bandwagon” fan. I have never been a sports person and the only way I could tell if a play was good or bad would be from observing fan reaction.  One thing though, I’m not the only one who finds Richard Sherman attractive.

I signed up for a painting class starting next Tuesday and am going to try to paint as much as possible in the next couple of months as it looks like I might have to have another hand surgery. I have dupytren’s in both hands but way worse on my (dominant) right hand. It’s not a serious condition and I wouldn’t have a surgery at all except at certain times it’s painful. It’s times like this that I wish I had discovered my passion for painting sooner.

Just before my 61st birthday I serendipitously discovered I liked to paint. I remember the moment clearly and while I don’t mean to compare myself in anyway to the great Helen Keller, it was akin (okay, maybe loosely) to Helen Keller’s discovering the word for water. I have to keep reminding myself I’m lucky to have found it all

Referenced from an internet photo – Oil on plywood – 12 x 16″

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Through the trees

Recently, inspired by an award-winning painting of trees, I decided to give plein air a try. Painting by myself outdoors in public makes me feel self conscious so I usually (more like always) avoid it. Somehow today I felt at ease and just sat on the ground with my support on my lap and went for it.

Acrylic on canvas paper 12 x 16" Plein Air

Acrylic on canvas paper
12 x 16″
Plein Air

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Weekend Alla Prima Workshop

The workshop was this past weekend. demos in the morning, painting in the afternoons. I found the class to be quite a challenge – (a little frustrating at times) Our palette. Flake White; Cad Red Vermillion (or cad red light which is what I used); Alizarin Crimson: Cad Yellow Deep’ Cad yellow light (I had cad lemon yellow); Ultramarine and Cobalt Blue. I think I felt frustrated because I didn’t feel like I was in my usual controlled (tight?) mode –  it felt uncomfortable and while I was painting, I thought was making a complete mess. I left the class feeling a little deflated. The interesting thing though is that for some reason, when I look at them now, I actually like them – a lot –

Oil on birch wood panel 16 x 12"

Oil on birch wood panel
16 x 12″

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Oil on canvas 20 x 16″

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updating homework assignments wordpress

I have been posting only to Facebook Just wanted to update Paintdancer.

Oil on canvas 20 x 16" Painted from life

Oil on canvas
20 x 16″
Painted from life

oil on canvas 14 x 11" Homework assignment referenced from an Anders Zorn painting

oil on canvas
14 x 11″
Homework assignment referenced from an Anders Zorn painting

oil on canvas board 14 x 11" homework assignment referenced from a master copy

oil on canvas board
14 x 11″
homework assignment referenced from a master copy

Oil on canvas board 14 x 11"

Oil on canvas board
14 x 11″ 

This was a workshop homework assignment and was referenced from a master copy.

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Update

Painted from life

oil on canvas board
14 x 11″

Painted from life

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Bessie Smith 2

My sister’s friend and now my friend liked the painting I did for her sister

Oil on Canvas       20 x 16"

Oil on Canvas
20 x 16″

so much she asked  I do one for her. Bessie 2 is actually a better likness our friend is very happy with it.  It is a sepia mixed using colors from Zorn’s limited Palette. Ol on Canvas 20 x 16″

 

 

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Painting from life

photo

oil on canvas board 14 x 11″

I’m taking a portrait painting class as I feel like I’ve been in a rut lately. It’s been a while since I have painted from life.  I think paining from life actually gives life to a painting. – This is Wednesday’s life  painting –

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Singing the Blues

One of my sister’s friends saw one of my paintings and commissioned me to paint a portrait of blues singers Bessie Smith and Etta James. I painted Bessie from a black and white photo she chose for my reference. Bessie was born in 1984 and color photos weren’t widely used until the early 1930s.  I just made up the color.

Also, I’m pleased to say my little 8×8 painting sold right away. AND – right after it sold someone else came in and said they wanted it. 😀 It’s still in the window until after the Seafood Fest.

 

    20 x 16" oil on canvas

20 x 16″
oil on canvas

   16 x 12" oil on canvas

16 x 12″
oil on canvas

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My Ballard Seafood fest painting

Historic Ballard bldg.        oil on canvas               8 x 8"

Historic Ballard bldg.
oil on canvas
8 x 8″

A couple of weeks ago I went into Dakota Art Store to purchase some painting materials at Dakota Art, our local art supply store, when the proprietor  asked me  if  I would like to join other local artists and paint an 8″ x 8″ painting to be displayed and sold during the Ballard Seafood Fest. Each of the paintings are being sold for only $25 – and the proceeds of which would go toward an anti-graffitti campaign in hopes of redirecting graffiti painted on buildings to painting on more appropriate supports like canvases and boards .  They supplied us with the little canvases and as an added incentive we can purchase any of their canvases – any type and  size and get a second one of equal size free.  I was told that they were expecting two paintings of cats so I might want to consider something different. I chose to paint one of Ballard’s historic buildings located on Ballard Ave and 22nd NW – where I worked years ago when it was home to  Northwest Yachting Magazine. It was a fun little exercise in perspective – and fun to see my painting prominently displayed in the window on Market Street.

 

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A Week in the Atelier

pastel pencil on toned paper 25 x 18"

pastel pencil on toned paper
25 x 18″

Last week I was invited and attended a week-long pastel pencil figure drawing workshop with the students of the Aristides Atelier. There were three non-students and we were referred to as guests. It was a very intense week and I was told every day in the atelier is intense. Each morning we met in a room on the second floor large enough to accommodate all 18 of us, to draw from a live model. In the afternoons we retreated to the atelier on the fourth floor. Did I mention there are no elevators in this old building? In her book Classical Painting Atelier, Juliette Aristides wrote “after climbing four flights of stairs and walking down a long hallway, you would reach a studio designated for the monastic study of fine arts.”

Bargue drawing about 7 x 4"

Bargue drawing
about 7 x 4″

The first two afternoons in the atelier we worked independently, in my case, familiarizing myself with my new medium and working on my color pallet. The third day we were introduced to walnut ink and I was introduced to Bargue plates. The Bargue method is a way to more easily identify shapes and shadows and is deceptively simple. At least deceptive to me, as somehow they challenged me more than drawing from life.

As I sit here, last week seems like a distant memory or something I may have dreamed. All in all, it was a great experience and I felt honored to have been able to work amongst such dedicated and – while many of them reject the idea of “talented” – talented artists.

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