Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Opening Reception: "New England Landscape Invitational"

"Reaching for the Sun", 48" x 23"

My husband and I are privileged to each have a painting in the Lyme Art Association's "New England Landscape Invitational Exhibit" this year.  The Opening Reception is this Friday, October 3rd from 6-8pm.  It is open to the public and usually an event not to miss - the exhibit is the Association's most anticipated exhibit of the year.  If you're in the area, join us for a night of celebration.  For more information, click here.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Auction: "Farm Stand Pepper"

"Farm Stand Pepper", Oil on Panel, 6" x 6.5"

Initial lay-in of color and design.
Background and darker colors added.

While training in Italy, I learned several painting techniques that I use interchangeably, depending on the subject and the overall effect I'm trying to achieve.  This healthy, farm stand pepper has so many vivid colors in it, besides the deep purple local color. To show off the transparency and the shifts of color, I did a base painting in brighter colors and added thin layers of deeper colors over the base painting.  To bid on this painting, click here.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Auction: "Mums"

"Mums", Oil on Panel, 6" x 6"

"Mums" Work in Progress

This painting was done from life.  My underpainting was quickly laid in with a raw umber wash.  Then I started putting in the shadow shape base color, moving next into the lights.  Working wet into wet, I added in the details last. If you would like to bid on this painting, click here.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Film Recommendation- "Herb and Dorothy"

I've recommended the film, "Herb and Dorothy" to all my artist friends and collectors.  It's an incredible true story of Herb and Dorothy Vogel, who have amassed one of the most important art collections of post-1960's art in the U.S..  They've done it all on their modest salaries as a postal worker and librarian.  It's a very inspirational story about shared passions, achieving the impossible and giving back. Being an independent film, it's not available everywhere, but you could take it out of your local library or see it on iTunes films.

The follow-up film, " Herb and Dorothy - 50 x 50", was released the summer of 2013.  I'm looking forward to seeing this film as well.  The film showcases how the Vogels donate 50 pieces of their collection to 50 museums in all 50 states of the US.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Auction: " White Impatients"

"White Impatients", oil on Panel, 6" x 6"
Loose underpainting-beginning to add whites onto petals

This painting was done from life.  When working from life using flowers, one must work very quickly.  This is a great exercise for me since my training is classically oriented.  I actually enjoy working quickly with looser brushstrokes and less second guessing.  I'm forced to study my subject vigilantly and to really focus on the getting the underpainting right from the beginning.  My underpainting is done loosely with a raw umber wash. It helps me get the shapes right and to figure out the balance of lights and darks.  It also gives me a chace to change the composition slightly if needed -sometimes I need to fill spaces with an additional leaf, etc.  In this painting, I started with the whites of the flowers - adding them thickly to keep them clean and vibrant.   If you would like to bid on this painting, click here.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Panel Preparation: How I oil prime my wood panels

Lately I've been creating many of my smaller works on oil-primed panels that I've been preparing myself. The panels give me a rigid surface to paint on and have good tooth, allowing me to paint quickly.  It is wise to prime several panels at once, so that when they are dry and ready to go, you will have several panels to choose from.

1-  Using a table saw, cut down 1/4" birch plywood to size.
2- Sand each panel with 220 grit (fine tooth) sandpaper, making sure to sand along the grain.  It's important to get the edges smooth because they usually splinter a bit after cutting.  Wipe the sawdust off each board with a dust free rag.
3- Create Primer Mixture:  I use Grumbacher's Titanium White "MG Underpainting White" Quick drying Oil Paint.  Otherwise, I use regular Titanium White Artist Grade Oil Paint, but it has a slower drying time. Dilute the chosen paint with mineral spirits or odorless turpentine, mixing it in a small container with a palette knife until the paint has a loose consistency that can easily be painted onto the panel.
4-  Once the paint is ready, I use a flat 1" glazing brush by Windsor and Newton to paint on the ground.  Paint in one direction and try to level off the brushstrokes.  Let dry over night or possibly longer depending on humidity.
5-  Once dry, lightly sand surface with fine grit sandpaper.  Now it is ready for a second coat of primer applied in the opposite direction of the first coast.  Let dry and then lightly sand.  Depending on how smooth you want the surface to be, the panel is ready for use.
6-  For larger panels, it is wise to paint the sides and backsides of the panels as well, so they don't warp over time.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Auction: "Ode to Summer"

"Ode to Summer", Oil on Panel, 6" x 4"

I painted this from life using an empty, mini Patron tequila bottle as my subject.  I like the shape of the bottle.  It also reminds me of summer nights relaxing on my deck with friends and frozen margaritas in our hands.  This painting comes framed and measures about 8" H x 6"W with the frame.  If you would like to bid on this painting, click here.