Friday, February 27, 2009

"Canyon Walk" ©

Walking out from under the canopy of leaves, the brush opened up enough to see the distant mountains and the late afternoon sunlight grazing the trees.

Oil on Linen, 16" X 20"

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

"Sierra Madre Villa" ©

The gold leaves, red roof and burnished walls attracted me to this view. On the other side of the Villa is a long reflecting pond surrounded by Cypress Trees. It was a toss up of which view to paint. The golden leaves won.
Oil on Raymar Panel, 8" X 10"

Sunday, February 22, 2009

"Pico Trail" ©

Once in a while you luck out and have a receptive and interactive audience when your speaking in public. Today was my lucky day as I was the guest speaker for "60 Minutes With An Artist", in Valencia. The Santa Clarita Artists Association sponsored the event and I had my fingers crossed for at least a few warm bodies in the seats. We had a full house and they were awesome. The time flew as they asked perfect questions to spur me on. To calm down from the fun after arriving back home, I painted a little piece of the Pico Trail.

Oil on canvas, 6" X 8"

Saturday, February 21, 2009

"Winter Clouds Passing" ©

This scene is so typical of California, with the exception of the clouds. We have been treated to an extraordinary display of storm clouds this month.

At night it's tough to shoot a painting this large, so I backed off and shot from a distance. My easel is Oak, so you can tell this painting isn't as "hot" as it appears. I did want to post this piece as best I could just so you a glimpse of the concept and what I have been painting for the last couple of days. Painting on linen again I am reminded of the elegance and again wonder why I drift away.

Oil on Linen, 20" X 24"

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

"One Ear Up" ©

Once a Shepard owned our family, Sadie. As a pup one day one ear popped up, a few weeks later, the other followed suit. When I saw the same changes going on as Kila was growing, memories of Sadie came flooding back.

Oil on panel, 9" X 12"

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

"Mt. Wilson Trail" ©

Mt. Wilson Trail heads out above the small village of Sierra Madre. After leaving the lush growth, due to the lower elevation and homeowners generous sprinklers you come face to face with this Palm Tree. Completely out of it's element, flourishing, beating all odds.

Oil on Canvas, 16" X 20"

Monday, February 16, 2009

"Canyon Quiet" ©

Someday artists will visit Eaton Canyon and talk about the old days when all you could see is wilderness. Thank goodness it's the "old days" now.
Oil on Canvas, 20" X 24"

Saturday, February 14, 2009

"Fox Field" © revised

I promised artists to post this painting again after fixing the echoed shape in the sky that the original painting demonstrated. Look back a day or two to the first version of this piece. The smaller tree had a perfect halo of sky, then the larger tree had a perfect batch of leaves making an arch, following the shapes. I didn't see this until posting, which happens a lot. One of the many advantages of blogging. It would be fair to say I tweak 90% of the paintings after posting to this blog. It's another source of critique.

"Sierra Madre Wash" ©

Here is the first look at the larger version of the Sierra Madre Wash. If you notice the small study that I worked from sitting to the left of the larger canvas, you can see how valuable the little paintings become. Without the color notes and reminder of a place and it's much more difficult to paint the larger piece. I will let this painting, set up before going back in to punch some of the river rocks and bright spots in the painting. The show it's going to isn't for a couple of months so I have lots of time to tweak.
Oil on Canvas, 24" X 20"

Thursday, February 12, 2009

"Jennifer" ©

My third time working from a live model. The difference between this type of painting and working plein air is huge. The light is constant, your inside (no bugs, snakes, wind etc.) and the level of concentration I can reach is much higher. I am in awe looking at the other artists works. A couple hundred more attempts and it will start to click. I am just jazzed with the process and so pleased to have the opportunity.

Oil on panel, 9" X 12"

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

"Fox Field" ©

Our trees have to be confused, 39 degrees one day, 60 degrees the next. Yesterday was one of the sunny days, in a parade of storms. Fox Field in Newhall was sparkling.

A note to artists. Often I don't see an issue with a painting until I blog the image. Tonight I see that the Oak tree creates a dark shape, echoing the smaller tree exactly. Good grief what was I thinking? Even though it was there, it's my job as the "artist" to make sure that each shape is varied and interesting. I'll go back in with paint and change that shape pronto.

Oil on panel, 8" X 10"

Sunday, February 08, 2009

"Melody Ranch, Back Wall" ©

Melody Ranch movie studios are two blocks away from home, but forbidden territory to my easel. Driving though the wash in between rain cells this is the view of the back wall. What I would give for a week within the walls.....

Oil on Linen, 16" X 20"

Friday, February 06, 2009

"Walker Ranch" ©

The wind was biting cold, biting right though my jeans this morning, while I was standing high above Walker Ranch.

Oil on panel, 5" X 7"

Thursday, February 05, 2009

"Arriving Storm" ©

From on the roof I can hear the gentle drumming of drops, signaling in the welcome rain.
Oil on Linen, 11" X 14"

"Castaic Lake, Morning"

Exploring compositions in a small format allows for a quick decision as to whether or not a particular view is worth painting on a large canvas. I think this view from an early morning walk along the shore of Castaic Lake has possibilities. Note to artists: This piece was painting on canvas panel, versus my favorite slick wood panel. The canvas caused the brush to stall, little pin holes of white were a distraction and photographing it was a real challenge with the canvas weave catching all sources of light. Can you guess I prefer the wood? oh yeah.

Oil on panel, 5" X 7"

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

"Cynthia" ©

I learned two important lessons during this 3 hour session with a model. Lesson one, never paint a portrait from the side. Being new to the group I let everyone find their spot, then fit myself in on the side. To me it's just not an exciting view, I miss the models eyes, or at least one eye. Lesson Two, an artist that paints portraits regularly explained to me that it's more elegant to have the head sized down small in relation to the size of the canvas. Last time I had the head quite large, so I attempted in this piece to go smaller. Next time my goal will be to paint looser. I learned so much and am grateful for the opportunity to paint from life.

Oil on Panel, 9" X 12"

Sunday, February 01, 2009

"Another Day" ©

I am painting on three commissioned pieces and slipped this little painting in between, so that I could post "Another Day".

Oil on Canvas, 5" X 7"

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