Friday, August 31, 2012

A friend asked me to "do something" to her attic stairs...

...specifically the risers.  I wasn't really sure how this would turn out, but I think I like it.
Here is a before shot to show you how "boring" (her word) the stairs were.

Monday, August 27, 2012

3 Part Commission


 Just finishing these 3 paintings which were all part of one commission project.
These are very site specific - for a hallway alongside the client's kitchen.  The two smaller still lifes will hang on one side of the wall in between doorways, and the larger, Sunflower painting will hang on the opposite wall.  The walls are a beautiful faux finish in rich salmon to raspberry shades, so I tried to incorporate strong visual pops of that color as well as mixing a bit of it into all my other color mixtures.
Today we go to the framer's and by the end of the week I will be hanging these on the client's wall - can't wait!
If you would like to see more of my work please visit my website

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Glorious Sunshine

What could be more heavenly?  
I did these 2 paintings today at the Olson Farm in Port Royal.  It was quite a drive to get there with fog most of the AM, but then the sun came out and the bees woke  up.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Ron Donahue workshop

I took a painting workshop this past weekend in Wellsboro, PA with Pittsburgh artist Ron Donahue.  Ron is a friend from the Daily Painters of Pennsylvania and he paints amazing plein air works from  the Pittsburgh area.  I have always loved his strong compositions and use of light as well as his ability to make a successful painting out of simple and often overlooked subjects.  Check out his website

I did 5 paintings during the workshop.  I don't feel any of them are necessarily finished pieces, but rather learning exercises.  I was trying some new things and just taking in the knowledge which  Ron so generously shared. We only had about 90 minutes to work on each exercise.   So the 2 pieces below are just studies and will remain just that - hanging in my studio to remind me of the lessons learned.

 This study of the tractor was done on the first day when it was raining and the class was pretty much confined to the Art Barn.  I chose this spot because I felt the strong values applied to the lesson Ron had just given and would be a good challenge, plus I could stay nice and dry inside the tool area of the barn. Ron helped me to keep the oranges of the tractor in shadow and to contrast the warm light inside the barn with the cool outside light.


This second study was painted in the town of Wellsboro.  The lesson that morning was on separating light and dark values, warm and cool colors, and simplifying shapes.  There was good strong sunlight that day which define the light and shadow families.  With a limited amount of time to work on this, I edited out a tree and several windows.  Ron also helped me to see and paint shapes rather than drawing details.

Overall it was a fantastic workshop.  We had great fun, explored a beautiful area of PA, and learned so so much.  It has inspired me even more to paint and to keep learning.  Thank you Ron !

Sunday, August 5, 2012

On my easel...

This work in progress is one part of a 3 painting commission for a client's kitchen....still needs some work.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Field of Lace

5x7 oil

My friend Larry invited some painting friends out to his place last evening to paint his field of Queen Ann's Lace.   I like the idea of an evening paint out - cooler temperatures and warmer sunlight.  I knew the light at 6 PM would change quickly, so I just worked on this very small panel and tried to not get too detailed.  I was hoping for some orange tones in the sky as the sun started to set, but instead the sky turned almost black with a threatening storm.  Fortunately I was able to finish my painting, pack up, and start home before the rain hit and I saw the dark cloud  following me home in my rear view mirror.