Thursday, September 17, 2009

And now once again for something different. I haven't done many interior scenes, but I enjoyed painting this view of a fresh juice bar at the central market in Barcelona, Spain. Perhaps it is all those nice warm colors.
This is an oil painting and is 14 x 18 inches.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

OK, time for something different...I've posted a number of street scenes from Mediterranean Europe (things I love to paint) so now I am posting one of my plein air Colorado landscapes (which I also love to paint). This one is in the town of Como, which is between Kenosha Pass and Fairplay, for those who are familiar with Colorado. Como is an old railroad town which served the Denver, South Park and Pacific RR. This railroad went over Boreas Pass and closed in 1937. The town is mostly old houses and buildings and not very big...a wonderful place to paint! The aspens are just turning yellow so we are at the beginning of the autumn color season.

This painting is an example of a composition I am strongly drawn to these days...a subject (in this case the buildings) shown in the context of its environment (the mountains). The house and its neighboring building are interesting in their own right, but in my opinion they are more interesting for their context. The same idea applies to posts I have recently done of city scenes where the subjects (people) are shown in the context of the type of town they are in.

The painting above is an oil painting and is 14 x 11 inches. I painted it this week.

Friday, September 4, 2009

I suppose almost all artists struggle with one thing or another, or many things. One of the things I sometimes struggle with is avoiding too-sharp edges around all the various shapes in the painting. I think that too-sharp edges tend to confuse the eye...if all edges are sharp it can suggest the same level of empasis for every part of the painting, which can be boring.

Sure enough, when I thought I was almost done with this painting I took a lunch break and then returned to it only to find I disliked it. My immediate thought was that this would be one for the trash bin, but then thought of why I didn't like it...its crisp-edged shapes. With the idea that I had nothing to lose, I grabbed a large bristle brush and dragged it across edges and from one shape to the next, bringing color with me from place to place. The paint was still completely wet and it was a playful and lighthearted experience. I kept going until I liked the painting and then I stopped, leaving the result you see above. I did not soften all edges in the painting, leaving some sharp to increase the emphasis on the related elements.

This is an oil painting of a scene in a town in the south of France. It is 24 x 30 inches.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Sometime early in the course of most paintings I usually think of the painting as an abstract arrangement of light and dark shapes...this painting is an excellent example of this. I was attracted by the shape of the sky as seen between the old buildings in this south-of-France town. It is a very old hill-town and the streets are quite narrow. This was a warm day in early summer, with strong I showed the light as very warm in this painting.
This is an oil painting and is 20 x 16 inches.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Every now and then it happens that I fuss over a painting in a frustrated way, trying to get all of the shapes accurate and working and reworking the painting for hours. Eventually the painting turns out OK, but then to relieve the tension I do a painting very quickly using only the loosest gestural strokes. Of course it is this second painting that turns out better, as is the case with the one above (I did not post the first painting). I wonder if it's necessary sometimes to paint the first one in order to get in the right frame of mind to paint the second. Thankfully, not always!

This is another of my urban landscapes of Mediterranean Europe, this time in the south of France. It is an oil painting and is 11 x 14 inches.