I have been painting up a storm lately and enjoying every bit of it. The weather has changed drastically in the last few days, my husband had gone up to the Sierra Buttes and there was about 4 inches of snow! I hope to get up there soon to paint.
Painting #2 of the North Yuba river
Painted saturated wet on wet. If you haven’t tried this technique you have to give it a try, it is absolutely thrilling. There is approximately a two hour window of painting time without having to wait for any layers to dry. It takes a bit to get used to the mushy appearance as you work it but to me it is like sculpting rather than painting. Once it is dry, you go back in to punch up your darks.
Painting #3 imagined river landscape
What a joy to paint this, I had no idea how it would turn out and I loved that fact, I prefer working this way.
Again another intuitive painting, I loved playing with the light.
Painting #5 of Bullards Bar Resevoir
The glow in the middle section is not quite as bright in reality in this photo, keep that in mind. I loved painting this, imagine that!
Painting #6 a semi-abstract
This painting wasn’t turning out as I imagined so I decided to abstract it to play around with shapes and values, nothing lost in an exercise of this nature. I have three more paintings to share, until next time!
I have been painting and also getting ready for fall and winter. I have been feeling a desire to get out there to paint en plein air with the weather changes. The painting above is wild and colorful but I wanted to get out of my usual routine. I like to stretch myself to see what happens.
Another painting testing my colors and being loose, not sure if it works but that is alright.
This one was painted entirely by intuition, my favorite way to paint. This is that same scene that I have painted over and over.
Another view of that ever elusive scene. I didn’t have an idea where this was going until it was happening, I went along for the ride, easier that way. I
This was based on a photo that I took of a reservoir near me. I wanted to go dramatic and here we are.
I wanted to paint serenity but wanted to have a little more interest in the water, I added a little more detail for dimension. I might give this another try it two.
I have truly enjoying my painting sessions lately. I will be posting from my Kindle Fire and if you want to see the clearer version, drop by and visit me on Instagram.
The painting above is of Bullard’s Bar Reservoir at evening. I went very dark with it perhaps a bit too dark but I like it anyway.
This one I almost abandoned because I thought I had jumped little ahead with the layering but I stayed with it to the very end. The trees on the right are a bit static and I will vary the height of one of more trees, an easy fix. This is a view of the Sierra Buttes from the other side.
I wanted to redo the Bullards evening painting a second time. I went a bit abstract with the sky. I used a sprayer to simulate light on the water.
This is on blue tinted Bockingford paper. I went wild and carefree with it, wet on wet and pushed the paper to its limit and boy did I have fun! I love this paper!
Eh so so for me, I lost the dimension and feeling of my rocks but wanted to include it. Not enough value range in the rocks.
On Fabriano hotpress. A pure joy to let the paint flow. I didn’t want a lot of detail I am again going for feeling. I am painting for me.
Last but not least. I almost abandoned this one because of a defect in the paper at the top section. There were two long scrapes and the paint settled right into them. It was a letdown and I was going to flip it over to paint on the other side when I decided at the last minute to crop the painting. It was a good decision because I ended up with a better composition anyway. The trees actually are a deeper green than my photo shows.
There you go, I am alive and well and painting up a storm! Until next time, happy trails!
If any of you have wondered if I have gone missing for good, here I am! Actually what happened is that I have recently purchased a Kindle Fire tablet and discovered that I can use it to take and upload photos to Instagram. I have tried Instagram before using my cell phone but I hated the quality of the photos (picky me). Posting there is so much easier, less than a minute and I am done. It takes me forever to navigate around WordPress, I almost dread it because it is so funky and slow. I haven’t given up entirely on my blog here but if you want to see what I am up to follow me on Instagram: Here I am!
I have also discovered that I can do a far better job of editing my photos of my paintings spot on. Going from my regular camera and editing I always seem to run into having my blues stand out a bit too much or my yellows are off. On Instagram I am amazed how spot on I can get my paintings to be. Plus it is so fun and easy.
This painting was started as a plein air but finished in the studio. It was so difficult to capture what I saw there and I almost decided to turn this over and use the other side. I decided to finish it and I really like the water.
This painting is not as yellow and pink in the sky, more subtle, keep that in mind. I had gone out to plein air paint at Bullards one morning, showed up at 5:45 am. So beautiful there but so very difficult to capture what I was looking at. I decided to sit and watch the light hit that section of trees and I think that about 30 minutes passed and I just sat and observed. In the not so long ago past, this would have upset me, the fact that I couldn’t capture what I was looking at.
Once I got back into the studio, I decided to paint entirely from my memory of the morning. It was simply magical how it poured out of me. To realize that you can’t truly capture Gods’ creation to the absolute T is imperative to being at peace as an artist, imho. But, we sure can express how we feel about what I see or experience, that is for certain. That is my goal.
Perhaps a little more detailed with the rocks than I like but then I had fun with this one.
No don’t adjust your monitor, this was purposely painted with an out of focus, soft approach. I didn’t want to fuss with details or bringing it up to a finish, I wanted an impression, that is all. This was painted saturated wet on wet.
Thank you for bearing with me on this long post, have a wonderful 4th of July for those who celebrate!
**A word about photos. The paintings and photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.
I was trying for a landscape with minimal detail, just enough to give the viewer the essence of the scene. At first I wasn’t too happy with it but the more I look at it, I believe that I reached my goal. I am trying for that happy medium where I don’t needle my paintings to death with superfluous detail.
I wanted to plein air paint at this beautiful local gardens before the tulip season is finished. This is last year’s post about this beautiful place Glorius Tulips at Crystal Hermitage . I am planning to visit here throughout the year because they do have the gardens open for visitors year round.
Aren’t these beautiful? I love it at Ananda. When I lived with my Mom and Sister back in the 1980’s I often would hike up the road and visit Ananda Village. I still love the area and the people.
I was fretting a bit about painting flowers, because I generally don’t practice with them enough. I decided to keep it loose and fancy free. I might bring in some more darks to bring out the centers but basically I want to keep it loose.
I almost abandoned this painting because I have the tendency to freak out when I can’t see where I am going with a painting. But, I pressed in and was determined to get something out of the experience. Happy to say, I ended up liking it rather than hating it. I am unsure if it is finished or not. Plein air is suppose to be not detailed to death and I want to keep the freshness and resist the need to noodle it to endless detail.
If you ever get up to the Nevada City/North San Juan area, take the time to go see the gardens at Ananda, especially during the tulip blooming season which is typically March-April or early May.
*A word about photos. The photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.
This is an acrylic that I painted about 8 years ago based on a near by reservoir. In my photo, I lost the orange in my sunrays and the water….and the pinks in the sky but at least you get an idea of this landscape. I will be purchasing a new set of acrylics and this time I am going to order Golden acrylic. I hope to make the order today.
I was trying to decide between gouache or acrylic and I have decided that I need a paint that I can get aggressive with. Gouache is similar to watercolor and aside from the opacity, I am thinking that I’ll probably approach the medium in the same way as I do with watercolor. Perhaps that is my thinking but I want a paint that has a firmer body and I feel that acrylic might do the job.
Wish me good speed on getting my paints and equipment!
After taking an entire month off from blogging, I am ready to come back, slowly that is. I found that I enjoyed having some time away from the pressure of blogging. I think that I have a sensible plan on how to proceed in my coming months of blogging. First of all I am thinking that sometimes I push paintings to a finish in order to post them. I will not be doing that, so you’ll see that I’ll post not as often. December will be an easy going month in regards to my getting back to blogging, in other words, I am treating the month as a semi retreat.
These are some of the paintings that I worked on this past month. Some of either close to finishing or needing more work. I really have learned that I am not going to push paintings to a finish as I have in the past. I can’t entirely blame this bad habit on blogging but my insistence that I have to have an end product…now!
I enjoyed working on these in the studio I had a few problems here and there but isn’t that pretty normal?
I have quite a bit of work yet to do with this one, a wip and that’s alright.
The above painting is about 30% washed out, the colors are far more vivid than they appear in this photo
Now for some abstracts! Below:
I had a bit of trouble trying to get this post put together, I was hoping to number the paintings but WP is acting a little odd and as I tried to number them, it was really messing up my layout. I will upload this before I lose it!
I worked on this studio painting for the past two days. It is based upon a photo I took while plein air painting along the 8 Ball Trail at Bullards Bar Reservoir.
I suppose that I could have gone darker and I might try this again until I get it to the satisfactory value range that it demands but I figure it is a way to get my feet wet with this particular scene.
Saving my white paper and going slow is fun! so different from painting from the seat of my pants, plein air!
All of my plein air painting is paying off in the studio, I would not have it any other way and I again advocate painting from life, it is integral to being a painter.
I can’t think of any other learning points other than I am discovering that I love pure color and when a color went a bit muddy, I freaked out. Most people would consider what I freaked out at is simple intermingling colors to an usable grayed down color, to me it appears muddy. Interesting, I’ll have to see what this all means. I rather enjoyed this painting session even though I should be resting because I am barely over the flu but I couldn’t resist.
I have another painting in progress and hope to have it finished before the weekend. I have another painting of Humbug Creek in mind to paint next.
I decided to plein air paint at the last-minute. I am so glad that I always have my supplies and equipment ready. This time around I sprayed myself thoroughly with mosquito spray but found it barely protected me, the mosquitos were out in full force. I was so intent on painting that I barely noticed though I did find that I scratched my knee raw while painting.
I made a mistake of taking photos of these paintings after I took them off my boards, it was difficult to make nicely cropped edges. This painting has many problems, the foreground was dark but I painted it too dark here.
There is something that I like in this one, in particular the foreground mixture of warm and cool colors. There is more of a depth in this that I am failed to capture in my prior paintings June WC #9. I do believe that I was focusing so hard in trying to capture the light that I failed to build layers of foliage and trees to create depth. In this one, I worked towards it simply by making myself do it, I know that sounds weird.
I really like how I was able to capture some of the trees in this (#3). I struggled with trying to bring some sunset-lit branches into the scene. They came out as lumpy masses. I think that I need to have a light, glowing watery mixture to pull it off.
I made the big mistake of having two trees kiss in the upper right of the painting. I didn’t plan out the adequate space and as it was happening, I was silently screaming. I was having so much fun with the colors and within seconds I messed it up. Darn. I lost steam at that point and decided to call it an evening. I will simply turn it over and use the other side for another painting.
On my way home I spotted a fox eating fruit in my garden
My learning points:
Don’t allow the task of one difficulty to overpower the rest of the painting, in this case, my building up a sense of depth because I was trying for sunset color.
warm, cool colors against each other but not in equal portions bring drama and tension in a painting (correct tension)
No kissing allowed between elements.
Make sure when painting trees to give adequate room and planning to avoid having them kiss, very smart indeed.
Keep returning to paint this evening location until I get it and learn what I need to learn.
Evening is the best time to plein air paint, don’t you all agree? While my husband is busy pulling a security detail on the Pony Fire, I decided why not and go find some party time with my watercolors. I have been wanting to go out and paint along the 8 ball trail which is part of the Bullards Bar trail system. I live within a few minutes of this trail which is one of my favorite places to hike. I painted exactly at the spot that I had a bear walking up towards me not knowing I was there. Fun and exciting memories! I made sure I wasn’t obstructing the trail but no one came by, I had the trail all to myself.
I caught the wave of juicy evening color but later realized that I was adding too much water and not going dark enough. I was enjoying the fuzziness of the images, maybe too much. I am wondering if I should touch them up but actually I am going to leave them alone. Painting #2 was an experiment in that I washed a failed floral painting off and as you can see, there is a ghost image of red roses on there.
Fun painting but as I said, not dark enough, not vibrant enough and yet there is a quality that I like. I almost skipped putting these up in a post but I thought what the heck, why not? In a way, my artist blog is a painter’s diary. So here we are. I will be going back and painting this spot several times. As I was leaving the light was getting mighty pretty. Now I need a separate series for “Eight Ball Light”.
It is alright to go wild and abstract but do have a good plan, in this case control the amount of water vs. the strength of my paint.
Don’t allow the excitement of the scene to carry me away to “not thinking and all reaction”.
Paint some more evening paintings! Why has it taken me this long to get out there and paint evening light? I have been intimidated but no more!