Sunday, September 17, 2017

"September Fog" oil 8 x 10

Today was fascinating, socked in with fog within 1/4 mile of the coast, and up the rivers, but sunny just farther from the water.  The fog was cool and beautiful, undulating between the houses, and alternating between heavy and blue gray, and a lighter yellow gray.  I parked in my car and painted from the seat, putting my canvas on a clipboard. I began the painting with a dark neutral and then adjusted within the dark by some details into the house.  As the afternoon progressed the light and fog shifted, thickened, thinned, and glowed.  I did not capture what I saw as well as I wished, and have work to do.  I did have a great chat with a couple who walked by, peered into the car and told me I was painting their house.  We had a nice talk.

Thanks for looking.  I'll post it again when I finish the painting. 

Saturday, September 02, 2017

"Red and Green Study" oil 16 x 12

This study of reds, greens and silver is designed to draw the eye into and around the painting.  I considered standing the carnations in a vase or the samovar, but liked the angles created by laying them on the surface.  RAther than painting the reds next to one another, I painted the red shadows thinly first, then applied the red in light more thickly on top of it.  This technique keeps the shadows more flat, with less light, and the thicker paint in the light picks up some of the bouncing light and adds to the contrast. 

Monday, August 21, 2017

"Flower Power" watercolor & ink 9 x 12

Yesterday I painted at the Marshfield Fair with a few other artists.  We were each assigned a fireworks-themed flower arrangement to interpret as we wished.  I worked with my sketchbook, intending to create a page which represented the busyness of this area at the Fair, and the sense of fireworks.  I drew the scene in ink, then began adding watercolor.  When I got home, I added a little watercolor crayon  to tie together some of the darks... an explosion of color.
Here are a few photos showing my process.

As always, thanks for looking.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

"Meet Me at the Fair" acrylic 2' x 3'

The Marshfield Fair begins this week.  Each year I volunteer down in the Horticulture area in the basement of the Agricultural Hall.  There is a GCFM (Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts) flower show every year.  Themes vary.  This year's theme is "Take Me to the Fair" in honor of the Marshfield Fair's 150th anniversary.  Here is the sign I painted announcing the show.  It will be hung on the side of the building by the entrance.   I look forward to painting a sign each year.... 

Thanks for looking.  

Friday, August 11, 2017

Monhegan Sketchbook - MISCA art Auction today

There was an art auction on the island today to benefit MISCA, the Monhegan Island Sustainable Community Association. Follow the link to read about this worthwhile organization which works to make island living accessible to those who want to make a year round life here. 

 I attended the auction last year as well.  It is interesting, funny, and people are generous in their support.  Both years, the auctioneer has reminded the audience that this is NOT an auction in which to look for bargains, rather an auction during which we should aim to spend as much as we can afford.  Both last year and this year I bought donated ferry tickets for our round trip to the island.  I did a little bit of drawing during the auction, but tried not to make any sudden moves as the auctioneer had a hair trigger and I might have been toting home something I did not intend to buy.

Happy to support MISCA and happy to have next year's ferry trips taken care of.



Thursday, August 10, 2017

"Above and Beyond" oil 9 x 12 - an S-Curve and fly in the ointment

Halfway through our 2-week stay here on Monhegan we moved to the house next door to our usual rental house.  The view is very similar, but feels very different from that to which I have become accustomed over the past sixteen years.  Here is a painting of the new view looking north.  When I looked north I saw the houses close and far leading my eye into the distance in a graceful s-curve.  
I designed the painting with that s-curve in mind, editing the arrangement of trees, rooftops and the sea to support the idea of leading the eye from front to back, then around again into the painting.  
I used a new-to-me surface, a pre-gessoed board.  The gesso is super-smooth and I debated finding some sandpaper to give it a little tooth, but opted against.  The surface responds very differently to the brush, with paint sliding around and lifting off with pressure from the brush.  I adapted by using more paint, applied with a very light touch, almost as if laying it atop itself with a palette knife.   The result is a gooey, gushy paint surface which I like.
Here are some photos of the painting in process.  You can see how I moved some rooftops around from my original block in to support the s-curve.  

Proof of plein air - a curious fly

Turn the canvas upside down sometimes for a fresh perspective.

Monday, August 07, 2017

"The Bog" and a Birthday Card watercolor & ink 3 x 5

  Each year we visit Monhegan Island for the same week(s).  Turns out lots of other people visit the same way.  We have met some wonderful people during these weeks, see them year after year, have become friends, watched their children grow, etc.  We look forward to catching up each summer.  In fact, we have a standing date for the 1st Thursday in August with a friend and her daughters for dinner at our rented house.  She brings the fish, we provide the rest.  This particular friend stays in the Abraham Bogdanove House, affectionately known as "The Bog".  
Abraham Bogdanove visited Monhegan in 1918, bought a house here shortly after, and spent time painting on Monhegan every year for the rest of his life.  His seascapes are powerful and energetic.
Our friend, Laura, rents his house for a couple of weeks each summer.  I created this card for her birthday today so she can have her own painting of the house she loves to visit each summer.