Sunday, September 27, 2009

Art Geography 1A

Here we are at my Studio L painting side by side as I teach Rita (a talented high school senior) a few lessons on how to paint a portrait from a reference photo. We have several geological-like strata of art over which we toiled. The first layer is a triptych that is a commission I am currently working on (see one of my previous posts). Propped on top of a blank canvas on top of the commission piece is an initial drawing of a barn by a pond (see one of my previous posts), and propped on top of that is the finished painting. "Barn by Pond" (nice title, huh?) is a current acrylic workshop that I am conducting at a local art materials store. Also take careful note that Rita uses her jeans to clean her brushes whilst I use a rag. Both methods are acceptable within the painting establishment. If you wish to call me to say hello, please note my phone number on the grey supply locker (click on the photo to enlarge). The Studio L phone bank is waiting for your call.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Barn In The USA!

With apologies to The Boss and whoever posted the photo that I painted from (on, here is my acrylic painting on stretched canvas (8'X16"). Two hours painting time with minimal fussiness. Initially drawn with the the edge of a small flat brush, and then the basic shapes (barn, trees, and sky) quickly blocked to destroy the white canvas (except for the snow on which I added a minimal amount of color). After that, just a matter of refining whilst squinting. This was painted over a disgusting painting I did over a year ago. I gessoed over it. Gessoed brush marks and some of the thicker paint from the previous painting has given this final rendering a beautiful texture!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Barn on Pond

This was painted from a photo I found on and is being used as reference for a two-session acrylic workshop that I am doing here in Sacramento. I am teaching my workshop artists how to block in the basic shapes/values/ colors. After roughing those items in, the artist then starts the process of defining. I am teaching that one needs to minimize the defining process and let the viewer complete the painting! Click on this image and see how simple it was painted. The trick is to learn to do abreviated painting. Concentrate on shape, value, color, texture, composition, but for heaven's sake, stay away from those tiny brushes and excessive details. If you want to see a wonderful blocking in process followed by more step-by-step images and painting notes, check out another Sacramento artist (an oil painter) by the name of Terry Miura and his painting of Notre Dame. Click on his "Studio Notes" section. My next posting (and keeping with the barn theme) will be an acrylic I'm working on today that is aptly titled, "BARN IN THE USA!"

Friday, September 18, 2009

Eat Meat and Support the Cosmetics Industry!

The 2nd Self Portrait Global Love In challenge (your self portrait with something on your head) is now posted on my second blog blog! I will be announcing a 3rd self portrait challenge as soon as I can garner some ideas from any you out in blogland. I need ideas, please!.. pretty please with whipping cream and a cherry on top! This is my 2nd challenge entry. I got the goofy hat years ago from my local butcher. Guess what? Rendering companies make regular weekly stops at butcher stores and super markets to pick up bone, meat, and grease! I was told that after the rendering process (whatever that is), some of the final product goes into the manufacturing of facial and body cosmetics! I'm pretty sure that meat by products also go into the making of soaps and jello.

Monday, September 14, 2009

I'm medium bipolar and a cheater!

Yes I am! I go from acrylic to watercolor painting on a whim. In fact here is a watercolor I did two weeks ago to break up my busy acrylic painting regimen. It's on 22'X30", 140lb, cold press watercolor paper. It is a scene in the high Sierras just above Emerald Bay on Lake Tahoe. I painted this watercolor from a photo reference that I threw up on my monitor next to my easel. The painting executed on a flat drafting table surface, which up until now, is how I have watercolored for almost 40 years. This semester, however, I have begun doing demonstrations for my Sacramento City College watercolor students on the vertical so everyone can easily see what I'm doing. We have no overhead studio mirrors. A portable video projection unit was just acquired, but I have yet to take out the time to learn how to use it. That's OK. I want to paint like Tony Couch, a well known and superb American watercolorist. If Tony can watercolor vertically, David can watercolor vertically! And now for my confession...I'm not a pure watercolorist. I cheat! At the end of my painting, I will sometimes add colored conte to the piece. Can you see here where the dastardly deed was done? (Click on the image to enlarge it)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Some of my new paintings at one of Northern California's best art galleries.

These are some of my new paintings up at the Elliot Fouts Gallery here in Sacramento. I am now painting like mad for a two man show at the gallery in February.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

One more post for today

This is a triptych acrylic painting on three stretched canvases that each measure 12"X46". It is a commission piece of Lover's Leap just before the summit on Hwy. 50 leading down to South Lake Tahoe. The lucky souls that commissioned me own the cabin that has this view! Not to be outdone, when I look out my window, I see the setting sun coming through my lawn sprinklers, and that really ain't no shabby view! Some day I will do a painting of this. But...I digress...the Lover's Leap triptch is by no means complete, but it's about 20% past the halfway point (would that bring it to 70% done?), so I'm feeling good about getting it off my easel soon, and getting onto other stuff. An artist's work is never done! I'll post the finish on this one as well.

Still Refining the Dragon Ride

Thought I'd update you on the progress of the children's dragon roller coaster that I started last week en plein air at the Calif. State Fair here in Sacramento.. It is being painted in acrylic on stretched canvas (20"X20"). I spent two solid hours drawing and roughing the scene in front of me. All subsequent steps are being done en studio! And it is no wonder, for how could I ever complete a canvas this size with this degree of complexity and with the sun dramatically changing the lighting conditions within a meesly two hr. period? Alas, dear reader, the trick is to maintain a certain modicum of plein air painting freshness whilst working indoors in air conditioned comfort with no mosquitos, gawkers, and sunlight to contend with! The photo you see here was taken just before I started the canvas. The lighting set up in my painting takes into account what I saw at the end of the two hour period. Indeed, I wanted the sunny foreground with cast shadows of the roller coaster track (yet to be painted in). I shall continue on this within the coming weeks and keep you posted. I just know that you all are waiting with baited breath!!!!:) At this point, I'm about 70% done.