Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A do-over

"Il Regali"
watercolor (18" x 24")

Sometimes you just need to have a "do-over". 
Sometimes life allows for "do-overs",
sometimes not.

Sometimes, its not that you got it wrong the first time...
its just you could of done it better. 

I am thankful when God puts me in a circumstance...
and I have the opportunity to do it better.

Today's painting is a "do-over" from a while back....I think I did it better,
and I am thankful.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

And in Heaven- SOLD!

"And in Heaven"
watercolor (6" x 6")

I am very pleased to announce 
that "And in Heaven" was juried into 
Randy Higbee's 6" Squared Exhibition and Sale.
This is a fabulous show including some of the most noted artists in the United States.

You are invited:

Artist Gala Reception
Saturday April 16th

Show runs 
April 16th, 2011- May 6th

102 Kalmus Dr
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Downtown Los Angeles, Morning- Sold!

"Downtown Los Angeles, Morning"
watercolor (12" x 15")

There are certain times of the day when even the most oppressive sights can look intriguing or even beautiful.  Downtown Los Angeles is one of the places for me...when the light hits just right against the trees, the buildings, the cars, etc...that place looks almost inviting. Can't remember when exactly I took this photo, but it must have been on a trip to either the fashion district (love the sample sales), the fabric district (always a project going on), the flower district (love fresh flowers), or the jewelry district (well, I can dream can't I?).

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Time for champagne and peanuts!!

"Elie-Fannies", final
watercolor (11" x 25")

Well, as Kelley's the big reveal...time for champagne and peanuts! 
Who knew animal butts could be so much fun!

"Elie-Fannies, stage 5"
For those that are interested, to get to the final stage I removed the masking fluid revealing the protected whites.  I soften some edges of these protected white shapes and grayed out some  (especially those in the elephants that are further away). I popped in more color into the elephants in the foreground.  I weighted down the elephants in the rear (not their rears...). I cropped the left hand side about 4.5 inches, so that your eye stays in the painting more. And then I signed it!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Elie-Fannies, stage 4

"Elie-Fannies", In Progress
watercolor (11" x 30")
Stage 4

So, where we left off from last posting, I had pretty much finished off the front herd of "Elies":

So at this stage, I am at a point of building up a bit more, "pushing and pulling" as they say. 
Here's a close up of the front herd:

And now I can start laying in the back herd....I have to be very mindful of the colors and values with this herd because they need to remain in the distance, while at the same time the rear herd as a whole needs to read well (i.e the closest Elie needs to read closest but still in the distance). Again this is done through play of colors and hues.

Almost done with all these butts!!
Stay tuned!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Elie-Fannies, stage 3

"Elie-Fannies", In Progress
watercolor (11" x 30")
Stage 3

Well, here we go...on to the fun build up stages. This is where I must be disciplined and slow down to take photos of the progress, as I easily get lost in the painting. I have to be strategic in color usage...although it may seem that the elephants are the same...I have to be sure to alternate the warms and cools, and use subtle hue changes, so that each "Fanny" gets to stand a bit out on its own in this big herd. (Isn't that what we all want, for our big fanny to stand out?) :)

stay tuned for the next stages.....

P.S. Kelley Sanford asked: "What do we get at the big reveal, champagne or peanuts?" 
What do you all think?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Elie-Fannies, stage 2

"Elie-Fannies", in progress
watercolor (11" x 30")
Stage 2
After sketching out "Elie-Fannies" (see step 1), I confirm that I like the composition.  At this point I am feeling there is a bit more space on the left that I am comforatble with.  However, because that can easily be cropped out at the end of the painting,  I will proceed at the intended size of 11" x 30".
I determine where in the painting my whites are going to be, and where my darkest darks are going to be placed.  If a painting is going to have several layers to it and built up a bit, I will use a masking fluid to protect the essential whites.  Masking fluid is a liquid medium, similiar to a rubber cement that is placed on the paper where you don't want paint. For this painting, I wanted to protect the whites of sunlight hitting the elephant ears. And touch on the tops of their bodies, and a bit on their tails.  I am careful to keep this organic and loose.
The first wash of watercolors was is very wet, light and loose, just to get the "lay of the land".  I really play at this stage...letting the back washes occur, splashing with alternate colors, and actually sprinkle the foreground with salt to give some added texture.

Stayed tuned....for more of "Elie-Fannies" (aka elephant butts!)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Elie-Fannies, stage 1

"Elie-Fannies", in progress
sketch (11" x 30")
Stage 1

I thought for the next few posts I would share the step by step process of my current painting, titled "Eli-Fannies"... you can see the progess as I go.  

If you remember, I just did a small study of two of these great elephants. This study allowed me to get a feel of what I like ( I know I like elephants), what works (elephant butts aren't that ugly), what doesn't work (colors? hmmmm), etc.  

From the study, I loved the composition but decided to change up the colors a bit. 

Currently in our home, we are re-doing alot of our rooms (another story for another day), and had this paint chip laying around...I liked the color combo in used that as a starting point...

From there I played with colors on my palette and made this test strip of them:

Next came the composition.  I found several different reference photos (I must say...there really aren't that many photos out there of elephant butts!)....then sketched out the piece on Arches 140lb watercolor paper (11" x 30").

Now you are up to speed....stay tuned!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Randy's Sunflowers- Sold!

"Randy's Sunflowers"
watercolor (6" x 6")

On Saturday, I got to spend the day painting away with fellow artists at Randy Higbee Gallery Open Studio.  He had two models and a still life for us to paint. This was the still life...still working on the figurative in the studio. It was such a lovely time... great subjects, great artists, great food, great music, great host...all great!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Elie-Fanny, study- Sold!

"Elie-Fanny, study"
watercolor (5" x 7")

If you have been following my blog for a know I have a sweetness for elephants. I adore them. And if I can find a new way of looking at them, capturing their massive figures in movement...well then yea! Today's painting is a true study...don't often do studies...but this was just to get the feel of the composition and play around with colors a bit. Very excited to start the larger piece with the rest of the elephant herd (11'' x 30").

If you are interested in today's painting you can purchase it as a simple unmounted watercolor ($95) or have the option to have it mounted on museum archival board, UV/element protected, and sent to you with a free display framing or matting required ($150)

Monday, March 7, 2011

Learning the Ropes

"Learning the Ropes"
watercolor (12" x 12")

There something about fathers and sons...that is just beautiful. No matter the ages. 
I have captured a lot of father and son images....and still, they are my favorites to do. 
Can't you just feel this relationship? 
Can't you just feel the "everday-ness" of this moment? 
Can't you just feel their purpose? 
For both the big and be a man...a real man.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Reverse Study - Gondelier

watercolor (6" x 8")

Earlier this week I posted the Painting of the Month, "Peaceful Canal" which was lots of fun exploring with a different color palette. Today's painting is a what I call a 'reverse study'...its when you do a larger version and still have some more to come I played with this smaller, close up of the gondolier.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Simple Pears- Sold!

"A Simple Pair of Pears"
watercolor (5" x 7")

I have gotten some clarity in the last few days....

My life has been a little challenging (typical life struggles),
a little complex (work being done on house i.e.,wooden floors repaired, re surfaced, and re-finished, 5 rooms  getting painted, etc),
a little busy (husband and daughter's birthday this week), 
a little draining (the flu hit our house...I am fighting it off)...

All that to say, the clarity I got was that my paintings this week have reflected my inner desires...
the simple sweet life.