Sunday, November 28, 2010

Don't Shush Me!

In the last post I told you about the Secret Artworks Sale that I was participating in. I am sure it was a big success, and thought I would show you a photo of the work I donate for the cause.
Copy of The Girl in the Black Hat by Frank Duveneck, 7X5, Oil on panel.

This is a little copy I did of a Frank Duveneck painting called Girl in a Black Hat.
This painting was actually a result of experimenting and playing around with a more earth toned palette for painting portrait. A few colors suggested to me by Carl Samson who using them to great effect in his work. I am used to a very chromatic palette, with no earth tones. So it has been a struggle for me to figure it out and work them in comfortably. This exercise was very helpful to understand the benefits and limits of each color.
I did a test canvas using all the colors in various mixtures. These extra colors are: Greenish Umber, Burnt Sienna, Indian Red, Light Red, and Vermilion. I just tested the colors with white, and then all the others on my palette, then started using the colors to work up a thickly painted copy in the corner.I strongly suggest that everyone do this with their colors. It is a good way to get to know your palette of colors.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


I am participating the Secret Artworks fundraiser again this year. I can't make it this year, so you will just have to go without me. Don't let that dissuade you, if you buy the card that I painted, I would be more than happy to get together and then let you take me out to lunch. So, that is an added bonus. Actually you do not have to purchase the card I painted. I am more than willing to let any of you buy me lunch.

I posted a few of my Secrets cards from years past.

The idea, 5 x 7, oil on card- My secret from 2006 
Selected as one of the top 100 

5th annual Secret ArtWorksFriday, November 19, 2010
6 - 9 p.m.
Westin Hotel Ballroom, Downtown Cincinnati

TheSecret ArtWorks is a fund raising event featuring the exhibition and sale of 5” x 7” works of art from local, national and international artists. All works of art sell for $75 each. The ‘secret’ behind each piece is the identity of the artist – which is revealed after the work is purchased.
Admission: $125 (single), $150 (couple).
Includes one Secret Work of Art, appetizers, beer and wine, and entrance to the event.  All Art Vouchers will be held at Check-In on the night of the event.  Art Vouchers for additional Secret Works of Art available at $75 each.

Secrets are out! You can view the Secret Works of Art here.  Click here.
I have just one card in the show this year. If you want a hint, mine is one of the better ones.

Bunny and his Peeps, 7 x 5, oil on canvas, 2007
 Selected as one of the top 100

Monday, November 15, 2010

The Weekend

The Indian Hill Art Show on Friday and Saturday went pretty well. The show was not only a bit more selective, with fewer artists, they laid it out in a more open and comfortable arrangement. It was fairly well attended, but very crowded on Friday night. I had a great time getting to know some of the artists. I want to thank everyone that came out to visit stop by my booth. It also helped that I sold a few pieces and made some nice connections.

Yesterday my family had an early Thanksgiving get together. My wife (in the above photo) and I drove to my parents house extra early so we could paint before the feeding frenzy. My mother and father live in a very picturesque farm community about 1 1/2 hours north east of Cincinnati. It is an open area surrounded by rolling fields with distant tree lines. There are various out buildings, barns and farm equipment around with which to compose a picture. I found dozens of possible pictures as I strolled around the farm looking for a spot to paint. I first settled upon and started a painting of barn full of tobacco hanging to dry (also shown in the photo above). The light effect changed immediately and became less interesting. Making a fast decision, I threw in the towel immediately- well, after about 30 minutes of getting in the big shapes.  I scrapped it down, wiped it out, and moved to a new spot to start anew. Facing the opposite direction, everything was being pounded with sunlight. This time the painting came together quickly and it was an absolute joy to paint- except for the wind- which blew my easel over as I stepped away to get some more paper towels. The easel went upside down, brushes and paint tubes went everywhere. The painting and palette fell face down in the grass. This is generally frowned upon in plein air work. It all cleaned up pretty well. I had to scrap dirt and grass out of the sky area and clean up a smear or two. Not too bad really. The only disaster was that all my turpentine spilled out on the ground. Laura was nice enough to give me some of hers.
An Early Thanksgiving, 12 x 16, oil on panel, 2010
After a little less than 3 hours I ended up with this. A cloudy morning had cleared way for clear blue skies. The light was incredible. With the dry summer I was not sure what the fall would look like, but the leaves this year are lovely hot reds and oranges. Everything seems to be glowing. I just hope the trees survive the continued drought.
I also got to try out some big, flat bristle brushes that I just purchased. They were very useful for carving out the big planes and chiseling out the form. Today I spent some time in the studio tweaking the drawing, cleaning up  sloppy edges and strengthening effects. I am pretty happy with this one. Probably one of my better one shot landscapes.

I love painting coffee cups almost as much as I love drinking tremendous amounts of coffee. Coffee cups have a romance to them and often have a graceful shape that is a challenge to draw. I enjoy using just a few simple objects to create little abstractions that will be pleasing not just as a recognizable objects. They become little arrangements in color and value. I recently bought a lovely Jadeite coffee cup in an antique store that I knew would be fun to paint. After trying a few things, I chose a pink table cloth  and a gray background which produced a very pleasant color scheme.The goal was to paint something fairly quickly for the show- usually a bad idea to have that as a goal. As is often the case I ended up working on it a bit longer than I anticipated. After spending the weekend with it hanging in the Indian Hill show I knew it needed more work. It was a bit lack luster and needed more color vibration so I went back in today. I may go back in on the steam. It looks a bit fake at the moment.
 Study in Gray, Green, Pink and Decaf, 7x5, oil on linen, 2010

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Stocking Stuffers

I will have some work on display at the Indian Hill Church Art Show this weekend.
Much of the work will be small paintings for $150 or less- great for holiday gift giving. I am serious, they would make great stocking stuffers.  Larger, more expensive work will also be on view- which is in my opinion, even better for holiday gift giving. What a great way to really proves your love. If you are in competition with a sibling for parental approval, a finely crafted painting by one of the cities best still life painters can almost guarantee a better result in the Will. Consider it an investment in your future. You could also buy one for yourself, as that also would be a good investment in your future. See here.
30% or proceeds benefit the churches outreach programs

Friday, November 12th, 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Wine Tasting, appetizers, complimentary Valet Parking
$5.00 donation for adults

Saturday, November 13th, 10:00 am -3:00 pm
light refreshments- Free Admission.

6000 Drake Road
Indian Hill, Ohio 45243
Click Here

I will be there, all spiffied up with a glass of wine in my hand. Every year the show is very busy and happening, and I suggest you get there early before all good stuff is snatched up, and so you can talk to me before the wine really starts to take effect.