Thursday, December 31, 2009


Intermission, 8 x 10, pastel on suede matboard
Desperate to find something interesting to paint, here is a pair of old Mother of Pearl opera glasses, I bought on eBay a couple years ago.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Ugly Duck Painting

Here's my next attempt at a still life. I sure picked some colorful objects to paint, huh? This shows the setup and the first pass at the painting. I kinda like the painting in this stage as it seems pretty simple and to the point. But I struggled on and messed and messed with it.

Below shows the final version of the painting. Its not bad, but to me, its kinda an ugly painting - mainly because of the color palette.

I think I need to paint the inside of my setup box a different color. Perhaps a nice neutral grey?

The Ugly Duckling, 8 x 10, oil

I added some minor highlights to the tiny painting from an earlier post. Here is a better picture.

Blue Pot, 4 x6, oil

Friday, December 25, 2009

Trying to Remember How to Paint

Well, I painted this afternoon. I felt like its been forever since I painted. 
I made a 'box setup' to be able to light my still life items dramatically. I wanted to paint the inside of the box pretty dark and was looking for my acrylic paints. After hiding everything away when I put the house on the market,  I couldn't find them for awhile. Took a bunch of searching! Then I didn't have the right colors to make black, so the inside turned out a deep rust color. Here's the setup with a couple of 50 cent items from the thrift store and a little blue note pad book.
Then the next pic shows the setup box at the top, and two paintings (oil). The smaller one was just a warmup and turned out better than the second larger one (that I gave up on, its not finished). The larger one needs wiped off and sanded down better. The board was gessoed, but I must not have sanded it enough and there are alot of ridges showing.

Here's a closeup of the little 4 x 6 inch one, although it is a pretty dark painting, and there is a lot of glare.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Happy Holidays to everyone!

A lovely way to start my holiday! 

 There was a beautiful sunrise this morning. The whole sky was pink, orange and purple, with teal blue and yellow at the horizon. I was driving to work, so couldn't take a picture, but the above is the same sky from about 40 miles north of me - one of my friends had taken pics and shared these.

I went to lunch with one of my bosses today. We got a window seat, and while we were eating SANTA stopped at the window and waved! Then as we were leaving he was in the passenger seat of the police car! We asked if he got arrested and he said he had to get out of work somehow...LOL 


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

No Buyer Yet

Wouldn't you love to buy my house?

No offers yet! We had 2 busy Sunday Open Houses. There was a good prospect last Sunday who spent lots of time looking over the house, so I hope they come back and write an offer. I'm not holding my breath, as I really think it will be on the market for a couple months.

I am itching to do some painting, so I think next week over the holiday I will have to get the paints out. I doubt I'll have many showings then as they will be too preoccupied with Christmas. There is an exhibit in January which is very important to me. It needs to be 'new work' for this exhibit, so I better get busy as the hand-in date is January 4th! 

Make me an offer I can't refuse! LOL

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Art on Hold

I had hoped to get into the studio over the holiday weekend, but I've made a big decision early last week to put my house on the market. That meant my 5 days off involved getting the house ready. The realtor came yesterday and we got the paperwork taken care of, and she had her photographer come and take some really nice shots for the MLS listing and brochures. The listing is to be 'live' tomorrow and we have Open Houses set for the next three Sundays.

I've decided a nice ranch style condo will make me much happier than taking care of a two story house with a fairly large subdivision lawn to mow. I'd been hoping to sell before now, but with the economy tanking I waited and had planned to put it on the market in March. But now with the 1st Time Homebuyer incentives being extended til April 30th, my realtor felt that if we waited we would miss out on a large part of the market for this price range.

So, long story short..... I need to keep the house spotless which means no artwork. I am afraid if I get out the paints, it might scare off some people thinking I will stain the pristine cream colored carpet! So, I will leave you with this shot that the photographer took of the studio. Looks pretty cool - I'd hate to mess that up right now!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Viewer's Choice Award

Tonight, I was awarded "Viewer's Choice" for the Worthington Art League fall exhibit at Anthem Insurance gallery for my oil painting! COOL! This was the same exhibit where I won an Honorable Mention at the opening reception for one of my pastel paintings.


Sorry I haven't posted anything new this week. My painting classes ended last week, so haven't had a goal. I had great expectations to work on stuff for Karin's DSDF challenge and Bill's Google Maps challenge........but now after the time change - its getting colder and darker as I get home from work - well, let's just say I'm not too motivated. The DVR beckons and the recliner feels comfy with my 17 yr old cat on my lap.

Last night, I bought a new lamp fixture for the studio and some 'daylight' bulbs, so hopefully that will help. Generally though, I am much more productive during the daylight hours, so with next week being the holiday, I will be getting 5 days off in a row and I intend to spend several of those days in the studio. There is another juried show in January for my local art group so I need to get cracking! I'd like to setup a 'still life' box with a spotlight and paint more from life instead of my photos.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Oil Painting - Fall in Ohio, final edit

"Fall In Ohio" -  8 x 10  - oil
Here is my final version of this painting. I have changed the direction of the light several times. I have decided to say this is done, as I have lost my drive to work on it further.

Foliage is a hard thing to paint. I feel I couldn't get the vibrancy I wanted to show in the main red tree. But with each painting, I am learning and that is enough for me. Time to move on to another subject!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Oil Painting - Pomegranate

In painting class last on Monday, we painted from life using fruit and a spotlight. I chose a pomegranate. I was happy with this in class, but now I see alot of flaws. It looks like a Christmas tree bulb to me now.... ... sigh....

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Oil Painting - Fall in Ohio, edit two

This is what I got done in class last night. I had the shelter house blocked in to the left, as shown in the last post, but I didn't like it. My eye kept being drawn to it and I wanted the trees to be the star. I wiped out all the area below the trees and my teacher came around after I had put the light color patches on the ground. I had planned on working those into a pathway. He thought it looked great as is and said it gave a look of soft mist rising from the ground after a rain, with some puddles on the ground.

It was too wet last night to do much more. In a couple days, I will probably just add a little bit more to the red tree, some bits of orange and yellow to the top, and add just a touch more darks to the grass area.

As always, when I first started working in class last night, it got to the real ugly stage - where you wonder if you have any talent at all and you get real frustrated! I have finally realized that if I just continue on and push ahead, usually it comes around - it might not be a masterpiece, but something that pleases my eye. In the past I would just give up and start something new. Hmmm, makes me realize I need to keep at it with the gouache studies!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Oil Painting - Fall in Ohio: Underpainting

This is just the underpainting for my next oil painting. I am using the photo I posted recently from High Banks Metro Park at the first photo here.

This started with a piece of scarlet colored mat board, coated with clear gesso and sanded. Not sure how much shows through here, but its more evident in person. I wanted to get a good start on my next painting before class tomorrow night.

Gouache Study - Zion

I tried to do more gouache studies and was having a lot of difficulty. Haven't figured out what my problem is yet. They are so small they should be quick and easy, but out of half a dozen, this is the only one that looks like anything. Guess I just wasn't in 'the zone' - isn't that the way it always goes? You have the time to get into the studio, but the creative muse didn't bother to attend!    A friend of mine was recently hiking at Zion National Park and this was painted from her photo. I may do this one and one other view in oils soon.

Vincent Blog

I found this blog that had Vincent Van Gogh's letters to his brother, setup as a blog. Its kinda neat. Haven't looked it over completely yet, but fun idea:

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Virtual Paintout

Have you seen Bill Guffey's Virtual Paintout blog? I have always loved to study maps for fun. I love Google Maps and the street view makes you realize that most places around the world don't look that much different than home. I decided to participate in Bill's challenge this month which was Belfast, Ireland.

Here are the coordinates the Street View I picked for my painting : +54 37' 39.56", -5 50' 14.22" or try seeing it with this link.

I found this view on an unmarked side road off Old Holywood Rd near Firmount Crescent. Surprised that the lane had Street View, but no street name was listed on the map. It looks like an entry road to a large cemetery, with a couple walking, and trying to get out of the way of the truck with the camera taking the map photos. What I thought was interesting is that in the Street View, it appears the couple is walking to the cemetery to leave flowers at a grave site.

Here is my painting, which is 8" x 10" and painted in oils. I moved the guy on the right closer to the girl, and made her walk directly at us.

Preview of MAC Demo Artists' Exhibit

Here is a link to the WAAL corridor at the MAC, showing the demo artists' work:

WAAL Demo Artists Exhibit

They still have some final touches to put on the remodel, but I think it will be a great place - I'm excited to be a part of it!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Fall Day In Ohio

High Banks Metro Park:

Play Time - Studies

I've admired Nathan Fowkes' sketchbook studies and wanted to try this myself because I tend to be in a big hurry to get into my painting, without doing some preliminary work ahead of time to insure a better composition. So this weekend I played around with gouache and watercolor on some scrap papers.

On Saturday, I worked on the following three compositions. These were from a picture I took in Sedona about 6 years ago. The paper for these were cut about 5 x 7 and masked off with artist tape.

This was done on pink matboard, probably not the best color, but it was just an experiment. I signed with an opaque white paint marker, but it still wasn't dark enough for me.

This was a similar composition and view. I like the black paper much better.

This was on an oatmeal color cardstock - reminds me of butcher's paper.
I like the pencil for the writing. I like this piece the best.

So, yesterday I got the brilliant idea I needed more colors in gouache. I bought a few colors of grey and a sepia. It didn't work out at all. I think the range was too close on the greys and the sepia too dark for that range.
This is something I want to master - if you can view/create something in grey scale and the composition works, then it will work well in color.
 The following abstract piece was just playing. I had started a scene from a picture at Inniswood, but it just looked terrible, so I just started slashing colors on the paper. Just wasn't working out yesterday for some reason. I think I need to simplify the subject matter.

Friday, October 16, 2009

New Art Center to Open

The wait is finally over for the new Peggy R. McConnell Arts Center of Worthington (known as the MAC) which opens this weekend.  The Worthington Area Art League (WAAL) helped MAC over the years with fundraising efforts of $25,000. For the League's effort there is an exhibit corridor named in their honor. As a member of the League, I will be participating in 'demos' over the next few weekends there as the public will be able to casually tour the new Center.

I will exhibit my painting, "Stone Fence Posts" in the WAAL corridor during the open tours. On November 3rd, WAAL members will be able to submit a piece of art to be included in a juried exhibit in the corridor for the month of November. I hope that the jury will accept my painting to be shown for this exhibit. I'll let you know if it does get in the show.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Fall In Ohio

Took the bike out for one last ride today, before storing it for the winter. It was a beautiful day, about 55 degrees and sunny. I rode about 7 miles along the Alum Creek bikeway and the Everal Homestead park. Took some pics with my cellphone camera.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Plein Air Saturday - Schiller Park

Today the group met in Schiller Park in German Village, Columbus. It could have been called Chiller Park. It was COLD. The sky was grey, the wind was brisk and the temp was in the mid 40s. Brrrrr.

This is a pretty busy city park. Lots of geese and ducks on the pond (I swear the ducks were laughing at us), lots of off-leash dogs and lots of screaming kids.... Very distracting in addition to being so cold! There were about 8 artists working and most didn't get much done today. We decided to quit about 11am and some of us went to a nearby cafe for lunch to get warmed up. This may be my last plein air outing of the year, unless there is a warmer day. I would much rather just take reference photos then to work in the cold.

Here are some pics of the park (the sun decided to arrive about the time we were packing up) and a shot of my setup and pastel painting.

My subject (from across the pond)


Finally We Have Sun

Finally, today the sun came out, so I was able to take better photos of the last two oil paintings. These also have a few changes suggested by my teacher on Monday night.

"Stone Fence Posts"

"October Sky"

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Honorable Mention

Today was the award ceremony for the Worthington Art League Fall show. I won an honorable mention for "Apples with Spice Tea" (pastel).

It was a nice reception. Two other members of the Saturday plein air group won awards also, with one taking First Place.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Plein Air Saturday - A Side of Broccoli

The plein air group met near Pickerington Ponds Metro park again. It was a cold blustery day. I arrived late - just can't get going on Saturday morning.

I decided to paint in oils today - my first plein air oil painting! I found it very hard to figure out how much medium to use to be able to finish the painting quickly. I knew my piece needed alot more work, but ran out of time.

We always join together about 11:30am and do a casual critique. The guy critiquing today, said my first attempt looked like there were a couple stalks of broccoli in the middle! I agreed.

This evening, I decided to work on the painting again. I decided to wipe out the middle right tree.
Hmmm. Not much better. I did lower the left side margin tree a bit and thought that was helpful. 

Finally, I decided to just take out the middle tree completely. Much better. I didn't feel alot of excitement about this painting. Not one of my best, but every painting is a learning experience!

'October Sky', 8 x 10, oil on gessoed mat board

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Group Exhibit - Joyce Restaurant installation

Laurel Richardson, Janet Waggoner, Jim Robert Reed, Tom Conrad, and I have a group exhibit at Joyce Kitchen Restaurant, 6101 Busch Blvd., Columbus Ohio for the month of October.  I have included 8 paintings (acrylic, oil, pastel and watercolors).

Please stop by and have some dinner and view the artwork. Here is link to a slideshow showing most of the pieces:  Joyce Kitchen Exhibit 

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Great news!

Just got a call that one of my paintings in the Worthington Art League Fall show won an award!!! YEAH!! I won't know details until the reception on Sunday. Made my day!

See my post:
for details and please attend the reception if you can!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Painting Class - Stone Fence - Post 3

I worked on my oil painting today. I feel it is done, but will see what my teacher thinks. We have this Monday off because he is traveling so I will begin a new painting in the meantime.