Wednesday, December 22, 2010

2011 is coming down the rails!

You'd be a clown if you think you can stop it, so clean off your brushes, get your palette ready, and have a fruitful new year everybody! This image brought to you by the James family of Sacramento who always get together to outlandishly pose in an outlandish situation for their yearly winter holiday card. Yes, the Sacramento light rail commuter train WAS COMING THEIR WAY as they quickly took up their positions on the track and despite the sign behind them to stay off said tracks!!! But what the hell, this is the type of activity that makes America great, and no one can deny it, and if they do, they're itching for a fight! Peace and love to you all.

Monday, December 20, 2010


A watercolor that I did a goodly number of years ago, but I still like it. Could this painting be called A R T ?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

I'm bummed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

One of my favorite blog artists, Carol Marine, went out with another fab. painter, James Coulter, and painted airplanes and did not invite me along! There is a special place reserved in Hell for artists like this!!!!!! Only kidding, dear readers, but I sure got jealous and I dare say a little misty eyed, when I saw what they painted and knowing that I was not there with them. I LOVE to paint flying machines! The prop, cute/smiley, profile, and head- on nose images were painted by Carol and the Connie (the most beautiful aircraft in the world!) was painted by James. I added my "Jolly Green Giant" Vietnam-era helicopter so that I can fantasize that I was painting with them! PS: Theirs are in oil and mine is in acrylic.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Bowling balls?

A watercolor I did awhile back of a beach near Monterey, California where the shore rocks look like bowling balls. Nothing like stone bowling balls on a stormy beach!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The labels STAY ON!!

The whole world has been breathlessly waiting for me to finish the ink line sketch I posted on Nov. 20th! Well, maybe I exaggerate. Anywho, here is the completed portrait that I painted in watercolor of one of my drawing students at Sacramento City College. His name is Raiyan, and he wears some pretty slick caps. What is currently in vogue with guys his age is the manufacturer's label on the underside of the cap's bill...YOU DO NOT REMOVE THE LABELS, DUDE!!!! 15"X18". 140lb. Arches cold press watercolor paper.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Liquid Sunshine

As I write this, I am lusting for some liquid sunshine. Why? Because I just had a wonderful (and salty) Thai dinner. Thristy, thirsty, thirsty!! At the top of my list for thirst quenchers is fresh squeezed liquid sunshine. 8"X10" watercolor on 140 lb cold press with deckled edge cut. HELP! MAYDAY! S.O.S.! The sky you see peeking through was painted with the last of my Manganese Blue watercolor. I cannot find any AUTHENTIC manganese blue watercolor anywhere. Do any of my readers know where I can get some? Maybe it is no longer on the market because of its toxicity, but in some out- of- the- way corner of the world, there may still be some. One can only hope!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

What's red and dimply all over?

7"X7" watercolor painting on 140lb cold press paper. This takes a LOT of concentration and cannot be done under the influence of alcohol.

Friday, December 3, 2010

This post brings tears to my eyes.

Despite a flow of tears, I persevere and post this 7"X7" watercolor I painted of red onions.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Watercolor on 140lb. cold press h2o paper and 8"X10" in size with a deckled- cut trim. Initial green hues wash was applied wet-on-wet with a flow from top to bottom by holding the paper at a sharp angle. After this initial wash dried, I painted in the negative dark shapes between the apples and finished by painting the little bit of foliage. Time to bake these apples with a sweet crumble crust on top... yum, yum, eatem up!

Saturday, November 20, 2010


What the hell?!? I didn't want to post this! It's ain't done yet! Go away!...YOU HAVE SEEN NOTHING!!! Get the hell off my blog and come back at a later date when I've finished!... oh...and have a nice day (or night) :-)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

For me, a record.

Count em! Eleven people in this family, and I was commissioned to do a portrait. I have never painted this many likenesses in one painting...a personal record.No pain, no gain. I'm painting in acrylic on a 22" by 28" canvas. Each face is approximately 3" from top of head to bottom of chin. The piainting is now about 85% completed. I work on it from half an hour to maybe two hours a day. With my busy teaching schedule, sometimes days to a week may go by before I work on it again. Now that we are getting closer to the holiday season, the family is getting anxious, and I will most likely finish it within the next week. What a job and what a great experience to have under my belt.

Friday, November 12, 2010

A little pin heady, but that's OK

It's Friday, and I'm back at The School Of Light And Color in Fair Oaks, California for another 3 hour figure painting session with some other fabulous painting compadres. Damn hard work...and...damn challenging and fun! I started out with a good rough sketch-in of the model's head then proceeded to sketch her body. Oops!, her head is too small! What the hell...if El Greco could distort his figures, then so can I ! As usual, my painting is still in that rude and crude stage. The model's flesh tones are certainly not there yet. I'm struggling with her sneakers and hair, and so on and so on...but...I think the foundation of a good painting has been laid. Check out the model's designer, ripped and torn stockings not to mention her cardigan and pearls...very vogue indeed! And to think, I only had to chip in $10 for the model fee, Hell, that will only get you one lousy vodka martini! Shaken, not stirred, barkeep.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Another Watercolor Study

A little ink line work, expressive hued watercolor, and a touch of colored conte crayon. Painted in 150 lb. cold press watercolor paper. 15"X18". From a B@W photo I found on the web.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Back in the saddle again...kinda scary at first.

Today I took some time off to attend a live model painting session. Some very good artists were there with a lot of experience doing this on a regular basis. It was a three hour session. I got this far. There are so many ways to start a figure painting . My approach today was to contour sketch with a brush and lay in color areas at the same time. I did not crop in close to the model, so I had fun painting the environment around her, Anyway, got my feet wet and will try to do this on a more regular basis, because it's a lot of fun and the practice keeps one on the straight and narrow or to put it another way, keeps one's skill level sharper. The other photo you see here are oils by a two of my compadres. My effort is in acrylic. I was the one and only acrylic-er!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The "hard" work of playing

I'm still searching for a cool portraiture style for my watercolor studies. Last month, I painted a North African Muslim young man on Tyvek paper (bottom portrait). Cool stuff, and I even did a very successful workshop with this material. Problem is, is that I'm still in love with good old fashioned 140lb cold press watercolor paper. I have decided to go back to my expressive bright hued palette on cold press. This middle painting that I did yesterday unfortunately is way, way, WAAAY overwrought with clown-like, rainbow colors. Pooh! This is where the "hard" work of playing comes in...lots of intense painting time to end up with a complete botch job! Well that was yesterday. Today, I went back to "work" and painted this top portrait. I do believe that my hard work may be on the road to success...we shall see... mustn't jump to conclusions...stay tuned.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

You're David Lobenberg!

Last week, internationally known watercolor artist Nick Simmons came to talk about his working method and to do a workshop at the California Watercolor Asc. in the Concord area of my fair state. As he was heading towards his laptop station, he looks over to me and says "You're David Lobenberg!" Well hell yes I am!! He gave a bodacious talk and computer display. If you have an h2o group, book this dude! Anyway, after the talk, we chatted a wee bit and had our photo taken.As you can plainly see, he is a rather sinister person. I just became a member of CWA, and by golly if they didn't put me in their November newsletter "artist spot light" section. Click here to get on the home page of CWA, then click on "current and back issues: right at the top of the page and high lighted in blue. I am on page 5 of the Nov. issue. (POOH!!!...I JUST WENT TO THE CWA SITE AND CLICKED ON THE ONLINE NEWSLETTER SECTION, AND THEY HAVEN'T GOT THE NOVEMBER ISSUE UP YET. GO BACK TO THEIR SITE IN A FEW DAYS IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN SEEING THE ARTICLE. SORRY ABOUT THAT)

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Can you spell T-E-D-I-O-U-S

I am currently painting 7"X7" and 8"X10" watercolors of fruits and vegetables in preparation for a large art and craft fair at the end of November. Here is my painting sequence of some artichokes (yum!!!...good with melted butter, mayonnaise, or garlic infused olive oil). First goes on the yellow greens, wet-on-wet and allowed to flow on a slight tilt of the watercolor paper. Here comes the tedium... painting each individual leaf, going from dark, where the leaf joins the body, to light on the top, prickly point. This is wet on dry. I'm working from a photo reference and really, really need to concentrate on what damn leaf I'm working on! I work on more leaves before I am even close to finishing the first artichoke. I always like to move around my painting and not become myopic on one part. This process rests the eyes and helps to keep things harmonious. Gotta keep concentrating on what damn leaf I'm working on! Painting those two lower chokes help to define the center one, and gives me an idea if the whole painting is going to work out OK in terms of my darks and lights. At last the fun of taking off the border masking tape and seeing my effort "framed". I will later cut a deckled edge where the painting joins the white border and float the piece in a simple frame. I do hope sales are brisk, because this is not the only tedious painting in my collection. Please wish me dood luck and wave me good bye!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


Yesterday I set up an old milk can on the floor in the middle of my drawing classroom at Sacramento City College and had my students spend several hours rendering the can in fabulous vine charcoal. I did this demo to give them the idea that charcoal is both an additive and SUBTRACTIVE medium. After drawing the contours of the milk can very lightly in charcoal, I then proceeded to cover the entire contour drawing in mid range grey charcoal. I then PULLED OFF charcoal with a kneaded eraser and pencil eraser (for small highlight areas) to render the lighter areas on the can (both reflective light and local lighter values of the can). Charcoal was then ADDED to render the darker areas of the can (shadow and local values). ADD + SUBTRACT+ ADD. Whenever you succeed in rendering a successful charcoal drawing, celebrate with a nice cold glass of milk! Milk can help keep your muscles and bones healthy and therefore aid in your drawing ability. Cheers!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Handsome Young African Muslim Gentleman

I sometimes roam the net to find interesting photos to use as painting references. I found one of a very good looking, young African Muslim. From that photo ref., I did a contour drawing using an ink sketch pen with a brush tip. The paper I worked on is TYVEK, a paper I learned about from seeing some absolutely terrific portraits by my friend Myrna Wacknov. TYVEK is used in the building and mailing shipping industries. After the inking, I water colored over it. As the paint dries, patterns of this synthetic paper is revealed. I have only just begun to play with TYVEK, and I doubt if it will become an an important aspect of my art, but it is fun! My Chinese stamp reads "peace". The female study is one of my watercolor students from a year ago.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

And then there were two wine labels

Back late August, I posted some grape watercolors that I had just completed. I also posted them onto my website. Well, a business entrepreneur saw them and contacted me to see if he could pay me a usage right to use two of the painted images for wine labels. The bottles of wine (red and white) will be used for promotional purposes. We agreed on a price and here are said labels. These are their design firm's design comps to be approved by the client. Kinda fun, uh? I told Mr. entrepreneur that an artist gets thirsty whilst working hard in his studio. Once they get the filled bottles of wine off the production line, he told me that he will send me a few bottles to prevent my getting dehydrated...nice man!

Monday, October 4, 2010

PBS Television Interview

About a month before my stint on our local PBS station, I had the terrific pleasure of being interviewed by Huell Howser of "California's Gold" fame( a popular weekly program where Mr. Howser highlights interesting locations in the golden state and interviews the people who live or work there). The interview was used to help advertise the Channel 6 annual art auction. Enjoy! Click here

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Mr. Lobenberg with Mr. Potter

I have just become a member of the California Watercolor Association (the largest watercolor organization in California) and the Gallery Concord, a very limited membership co-op watercolor gallery made up of CWA artists and voted into membership. We just put together our Fall show and had a reception this last Friday. On the following day, I took my first turn with the president of Gallery Concord to gallery sit. The gallery is open to the public on Thursday through Sunday. While the prez was showing me the ropes, in comes one helluva master water color artist to pick up one of his paintings. His name is Ken Potter, and he is a Master Signature member of CWA. I've known him and has admired his work for many years. Quite frankly, he is waaaay under rated! Check him out on Here is a photo of me and Mr. Potter as well as a photo of one of my portraits in the Gallery Concord Fall show.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

I promise that this is the LAST ONE!

Another photo from the KVIE green room. Next post will be art again. The devil made me do this! The goofy dude on the left id yours truly.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

My Three Hours of Fame!

Going on 15 years now, I have been an "art expert" on the televised annual PBS, KVIE channel 6, live art auction. Artists from all over the Northern California viewing area are judged into the auction every year and donate an art piece. During the three day televised event, each piece of art is on the air for about five minutes. I get my turn along with other art experts to talk about the individual art donations along side a celebrity auctioneer, whose job is to drum up the excitement to get viewers to call in their bids. This weekend, I put in a three hour stint working with three different auctioneers in three different hour time slots. Camera 3, ten seconds to live feed, your on!