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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Weekend Work

I will post a few of the pieces I worked on this past long weekend. This first one is from a photo reference I took while in San Francisco the end of October. We walked Ocean Beach in the wind and rain and these two ravens were walking the wall  next to the entrance to the beach. This painting is 20"x30" and I am not sure it is finished, but it is pretty close. I am sitting on it awhile. I don't have a name for it so if any on you have any ideas, I would love to hear them.
This next painting I started a few weeks ago, got stuck (ie didn't feel motivated to work on it) and then just got to it. The reference I am using for it was taken this summer in what I call my parking strip garden (ie it is on the other side of our sidewalk, next to the street). I was going to keep it pretty graphic in the background but then I got started on breaking up the dark shape of the shadow that was across the street. I have not completed that because I am  not convinced I like it. This painting tentatively has the title of "Day Lily Riot" and it is 20x16x1.5. There is a swallowtail butterfly in one of the day lilies.
This little piece is 12x12 and I started it plein air while in Taos last May. It is of a little church that was a few blocks from the B&B we were staying in. I went out before breakfast and only had a short time to get the block in done. It has been sitting around awhile but I was finally motivated to finish it up. The church is called "Neustra Senora de Dolores."
And for something completely different is the painting above that I found while cataloging my inventory last week. I did this still life in Guilford, CT 5 years ago. I was enamored of my friends collection of old hammered pitchers. I did a few touch ups on the two pitchers in the middle ground as they just didn't read right. I also took out the solid black background that just was too dead and put the bluish purple back there instead. That was a vast improvement. I had done a number of w/c studies of her collection, so I did have something to go by. They are just such fun shapes.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Now the Work Begins

To have won The Best of Show at the Littleton Museum's "Own an Original" has quite the weight attached to it. To have one's own show is a wonderful gift. Most times when a person has a one person show, however, they are not expected to come up with 90 paintings! I have had a few one person shows at galleries and I think the most I had at any one show was 35. To get my self in order, I have started to inventory those paintings I have that I would put in the show, then those that I would use if I need them; next I have marked whether the painting needs a frame. I placed my first frame order just the other day, so I can spread out the expenses throughout the 9 months. I just about used up all the prize money I won (but have not yet received)! I am trying a new online frame shop so if I like what I ordered, I will let everyone know via a blog post. Their prices seemed pretty darn good, no tax and I got free shipping. I am glad that most of my new larger pieces are gallery wrapped stretched canvas so I won't have to frame those. I may buy one floater frame to see how I like it, though for one of the smaller profiled wrapped canvases. Organization I hope will keep me on track. The other day I put my list in a spreadsheet so I can keep track of it all. and yesterday I managed to pretty much wrap up two paintings and almost finish a third. May the rest of the weekend continue on such a "roll."

Friday, November 19, 2010

Best of Show

Last night was the opening of the OWN an ORIGINAL juried show at the Littleton Museum. Was I surprised to learn my painting, "Reading@the Metropolis," had won BEST OF SHOW? To say the least!  Not only did the painting earn me a cash prize but also a one person show to be held at the Littleton Museum next September/October. I must have 90 paintings ready to hang for the opening on Sept 15. I take this as a challenge.

Last week, Tuesday November 9, was the opening for the 4th Annual Denver Plein Air Exhibit. This exhibit is located on the 7th floor of the main Denver Public Library. I discovered upon arriving that my one painting, "Curious Red Door," had won an Honorable Mention. I don’t yet know what that means other than a ribbon, but this is the third year in a row that I have been in this show and won an award (2 years ago I received a $100 gift certificate for my Honorable Mention but times are tougher now).  I seem to be doing well at the local level, so I need to continue to put my paintings into the national arena as well. That is much tougher competition, of course, but at least I have gotten into 2 out of the 3 national juried shows I submitted to this past year.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Black and White

The last two Saturdays I attended Kevin Weckbach’s class. Oct 30 was the critique for the month’s homework assignment. I had not been in town to attend the class at the beginning of the month so I had to glean what I could out of the email that was sent with the assignment. I misread it, so I did the following still life thinking it was a use of “mother” color and that mother color was BLACK (ie every color I put on the canvas should include black in the mix, even if the “color” being applied is white). Instead it was supposed to be a still life of “Black on Black.” To do this I should have had a black backdrop and all the objects should have been black. The Reflective objects I used where fine as well, since they would have reflected all the black around them to make them appear “black.” I failed in that I did not do the assignment correctly, but I passed in that I did the project correctly based on my criteria. I also timed myself so this was a very quick painting. I gave myself 1.5 hours to do a 14”x18” canvas. I cropped out a roll of blue paper towels as they just didn't add anything to the composition.

November 6 we painted in class doing “White on White.” The same concept using all white objects, back drop and table top. It is 11x14 and it took me the whole class time to do it. (10 am-1pm) We did not get to a critique but Kevin said I was getting it. The point of these exercises is to pay attention to the color variations within a color grouping, ie there are warm whites and cool whites and what reflects into or bounces off of each surface also impacts the color.(that is a billy goat's horn (hollow) on the right-not really a white but we got away with it.)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

2010 Denver Plein Air Opening and Own an Original

Tuesday, November 9 starting at 5-8 p.m. will be the artists reception at the main Denver Public Library, downtown. I have only one painting in this year. To view the show online, It is a fun event to attend; and the show is up through December. The painting I submitted that was accepted is the side building of the Curious Theater.

Thursday, November 18, 5:30-7 p.m. is the City of Littleton Fine Arts Own an Original Art Exhibition reception. This opening and show is held at the Littleton Museum of Fine Arts Gallery, 6028 S. Gallup St, Littleton 80120. I just found out today that the 3 pieces I submitted were accepted. This show is up thru January 16, 2011, so there is time if you are in the area to check it out. For those of you out of town or not interested in going to the museum, the paintings are Lavendar Hydrangeas, 24x30; Reading@theMetropolis, 20x16; and Smokin', 16x20. I have had a number of comments lately that I really need to focus on painting people, so that got me to submit the two figure paintings to this exhibit.