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Wednesday, May 27, 2015

FLASHBACK

Clematis: In My Garden
30 x 35 cm. image
46 x 51cm.  frame

Cool Cows
36.5 x 27.5 cm.
63 x 53 cm. frame

Tourists in Tuscany
33 x 24.5 cm.
57 x 50 cm. frame

Pink Passion
16 x 11 in. image / framed

Barn Study
10.5 x 10.5 in. image / framed

Somewhere in Greece ...
20.5 x 9 in. image/ framed and hanging in my sister's place

I was going through some older paintings I'd had framed. I am taking them to the gallery at the center where I teach, and hopefully they will find a new home! But when looking at them, I realized how much more I like my older work. It seemed easier to create them in those days, and was more fun, too. I believe I have let myself get too caught up in the  competitiveness of marketing. Time to let that go, and find my love of art and drawing and painting again!!!

I haven't posted in a while as my camera has been in for repairs, but soon ...

Thank you for dropping by!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

So ... You Want to See How It's Done???

Aureolin and quin. burnt orange applied w/w

Then a w/w application of a brown/black mixture, with some lifting while it's still damp

Another wet black application, with some thin orange in the lighter area ...

More lifting, this time getting serious with the Magic Eraser

Start the eyes - it looks so bizarre at this stage!


More on the eyes and nose - using quin. burnt orange, quin. violet and indanthrone. For the tongue, I am using quin. burnt orange, permanent rose and cobalt blue.

Starting his hair colors, working primarily w/w  - mostly a steely grey...


Looking a bit like Drake. I am about 3/4 of the way done.

Reference photo for pose

Using this photo for reference for the shapes and contours of his face

... and this one for colors.

This is what I am working on right now. I have to remember to take breaks, and step WAY back to look at the overall effects. One does get a bit squirrelly working on detailed painting using blacks.
I also must decide what to do with the background for the cowboy - something minimalist, maybe in soft grey-greens and yellows.  And there is a landscape I started as a demo in class ... and some azalea blossoms dying to be painted ...

Thank you for dropping by!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Captivated by a Cowboy ... a Work in Progress

Reference drawing

Before we continue, here's a word from our sponsor, Maggie, wondering why I am not taking her with me. 

Back to painting ...
Thin washes of aureolin + quin. burnt orange for hat, cobalt blue for shirt, and quin. sienna, alizarin crimson and cobalt blue for skin.

Quin. sienna and alizarin for shirt, splashed in w/w.

More of the same ...

Some shadowing on the face and neck with a thicker mixture of orange, crimson and blue, and some extra crimson and orange for Scott's sunburned skin.

Shadow on front of hat and a bit of reflected red on the brim, too.

Deepening skin tones, and starting on moustache and goatee, using aureolin, crimson and blue.

Touches of detail on hat, and still deepening skin colors.

I am here right now. Scott's hat, glasses, moustache and probably ear need a bit of work, but on the whole, I am pleased with how he has turned out. 

Reference photo

About a month ago, I talked my farrier [he of the Two Bums painting "fame"]  into getting into his cowboy gear, and doing some modeling for me. I took at least 50 photos of Scott posing on the ground and on horseback with his dog, Sadie, and his girlfriend's horse [his own horse needed too much cleaning up]. I wanted to do a relatively small, fast painting to warm up before starting a large painting of him with dog and horse. And this is the result.
I have known Scott for about ten years. He has taken care of Bruno's shoeing needs, and that has been great, as His Highness has a penchant for removing shoes. Bruno was actually stabled nearby, at Scott's barn, when I first met him. Scott has also helped me with some heavy work around the barn. He is just a sweet, generous man - a good friend!
He really is a cowboy - worked in the rodeos for years until he had a whopper accident. He still does volunteer work with local rodeos.

Thank you for dropping by!


Thursday, May 7, 2015

All in a Day's Work ...

Why I felt compelled to do this, I'm not sure, other than it was too delicate. It needed some oomph.

Today I tried to minimize the garishness of those dark lines by going over the entire work with a lavender color. 

Did some work with Drake the II - lifting with the magic eraser [it really is magical], and starting his eyes.

And I started my cowboy painting.

Cobalt blue on the left side of the shirt, a mixture of aureolin and quin. burnt orange for his hat, and flesh tones of quin. sienna, alizarin crimson and cobalt blue.


The shirt I also started with a quin. sienna/alizarin mix. I'm amazed how much it already reminds me of Scott. 

And I took this to the framer. It will have a dark brown/black mat and a somewhat rustic-looking mid-brown wood frame. I originally thought to varnish it, but after looking at it critically, decided it needed a boundary, a perimeter - the background is so light.

All this painting was done because I couldn't ride His Highness. We've been working on getting him to use his right hind more effectively. He has a gorgeous, powerful trot on the left rein, but his right side is quit wimpy, probably due to all those years of racing around a track in one direction. Unfortunately, my right side is weaker, too. I had a whopper of a cycling accident years ago - a woman rear-ended me doing about 50 mph. The impact was so hard, she couldn't drive her car after - the damage was so bad. And I am left with a bad back. But I spoke with my riding trainer today, and she feels we can overcome both our inadequacies by working in shorter intervals. I am definitely NOT quitting riding!!!

Thank you so much for your visit!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Still Here ... Still Painting ...

Reference

Thin w/w washes of aureolin, quin. rose and cobalt blue.

More of the same for the background, with a thin glaze of yellow, pink and indanthrone for shadows on the petals.

Branches added - quin. burnt orange, quin. violet and indanthrone. The buds are painted with greens of aureolin, burnt orange and indanthrone.


I added a thin wash of greys in the upper right. 

I started to go over the petal shadows with a mixture of violet and indanthrone.




I am here now. It doesn't quite say what I want it to say. Do I have the guts to go in there again???

Another soon-to-be-painted portrait. This is based on one of the photos I took a couple of weeks ago of my farrier. He very kindly dressed up in his rodeo gear -  horse, dog and all - and I took about 50 photos.

And another start on good, old Drake. His people liked how I softened his fur in the last one - unfortunately, I scrubbed so hard, I almost went right through the paper. That's why I am doing "Drake II".
I started with a loose wash of aureolin and quin. burnt orange ...

... then started in with the darks for the background. To be continued!!

That's all for now. Thank you for dropping by!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Trying to Control the Uncontrollable ... and Getting More than Frustrated with It!!!

My nemesis right now - trying to create some softer, nebulous interpretation of this %$**#@ magnolia.

First attempt

Start of third or fourth attempt - losing count
Thin w/w washes of cobalt blue and some quinacridone-type pink

Second w/w wash of quin. gold and cobalt blue, then lift whites.

More gold and blue ... more lifting ...

Looks like I have been lifting so much that most of the sizing is gone from the paper.

I did this as a quickie demo for class yesterday. The softness looks so damn good, but to keep it ... that's the hard part!!!

As you can tell, I am extremely frustrated with watercolor. It's as difficult as riding well - trying to "control" the truly uncontrollable. I have made my peace with horses and riding [well ... almost all the time], and that only took thirty years. I have been painting for fifteen years - looks like I have a way to go yet. Today, I feel that if it wasn't for the teaching, I would give it up. I can paint within the lines reasonably well, but moving beyond that ..... that is the quest.

Thank you for visiting, and listening to the rant.