Thursday, January 29, 2009

River Painting Final...

Hmmmm, O.K. after taking my painting into my workshop and having quite a lovely discussion, I have come to the realization that this did not go abstract so much as impressionist. I'm o.k. with that. As a mater of fact I love impressionism. That may have something to do with the results. So, I have sprayed a workable fixative on it and will let it set in the studio for a few days, that is if I can keep my mitts off it, and let it tell me what it needs, if anything.

To be continued...

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

River Painting Final?

Well I couldn't let it alone for long. I also could not stop the creative process and take photos.

I pushed and pulled colors. I scrubbed and added, took off and added more. At one point I decided the painting would never be any good and I would just moth ball it and move on. I'm glad I pushed on. I am feeling very good about the painting now.

What do you think?

Saturday, January 24, 2009

River Painting step 3,4,and more

In this next photo I have started applying colored pencil with sticks. I decided to use some natural mineral spirits to blend the colors. I had somewhat mixed results. The colors would blend well but would muddy if I didn't work from the light colors to the dark colors. If I had the "Rub N' Buff" under the color it would get muddy as well. I ended up using a lot of mineral spirits and the areas where I used it stayed tacky for the rest of the day.

Unfortunately I was in too big a hurry on the next photo and it was out of focus so... fast forward to the next day and a lot more color.

I am struggling with the painting now and feel it is moving more and more away from an abstract. I think I will let it sit for awhile and look at it and think about what it needs.

Friday, January 23, 2009

River Painting step 2

Next I applied some "Rub N' Buff" with my finger in some places. This reminded me of finger painting! What fun. I was just careful to keep applying the color in some places and not all over, standing back and looking for where I thought I would like more. I used a turquoise color, some silver and a bit of gold and red.

I then decided to add water soluble colored pencils. In the first photo I have the color on dry. The next photo shows the color after I applied water.

After it is dry I will start adding color with colored pencil sticks.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

River Painting step 1

O.K. Once again I am going to try and share my process in the creation of my painting.

Last fall I stopped along a local river and took some photos of the river and autumn foliage. The water level was so low I could almost walk across the river on the river bed. I loved the formation the water had carved on the rock bed.

I have decided this will be my subject. I begin by creating thumb nail sketches. Very quickly I realized that I had two paintings to consider. One of the landscape including the rocks in the river and another of just the rock patterns.

After some thought I have decided to do both paintings starting with the rocks. I looked through all my reference photos and started to crop just the rock patterns till I came across something I liked. I decided I would attempt to do this one as an abstract. I have not attempted an abstract painting in over 30 years so we will see how it goes.

I decided to make the painting 28 1/2 by 23 inches because I already have a frame that will fit that size. I have also decided to put it on illustration board. I cut the board and taped off a 2 3/4" border all around for the 3" mat. This will give me a 1/4" all around to make sure my mat will cover.

I then decided to texture the board with Gesso and a sponge. I applied a thin coat of Gesso on a small area and dabbed the sponge over the wet Gesso. After it dried I sketched out some guide lines with a gray pencil.

The hardest part is remembering to stop and take a photo.

Monday, January 19, 2009


I was contemplating starting a painting I have been thinking about since last Fall. I started doing some thumb nail sketches and was in the process of scanning the images to share on my blog when I came to a stop. It was almost like a vail came down and covered me, smothered me. I began to question why I would want to go through the process of doing yet another painting. No one would buy it and it would sit with my other paintings in a corner of my studio gathering dust. Why bother?

I spent the rest of the day digging myself out of my gloom and doom, telling myself time and again, I do it because I have to. I do my art because it is in me and I need to let it out to feel whole, to feel like I am complete. I do my art for me! Why dose it get to be so complicated sometimes?

Why do we question our talent and abilities to just express ourselves through our art and not care what the rest of the world thinks? Maybe it is the gray days of winter or the alignment of the planets that caused such doubt to overcome me. This too shall pass, and thankfully it has. I am ready to begin anew!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Early Spring Clean

Well, it's a brand new year and time to think about the future. I have been thinking about my art and what new directions it will take in 2009.

To begin the process I am cleaning out my studio space. Yikes! At first it seemed a daunting and insurmountable task but my loving partner helped me with the first steps. We broke it down and just started by sorting through the closet. He suggested that I remove anything that did not have to do with art or the business of art. That got the ball rolling and I have been proceeding quite successfully. I have a pile for the thrift store, a pile for recycle, and a pile of garbage. When I finish I hope to have a room where I can work that inspires me.

I think it is important to have a space for your art work, small or large, someplace where your art is center to everything else. I also think if I clear out old stuff it will make room for fresh ideas to enter, a kind of Fug Shui concept. So, get busy and clear some space for your art in 2009!