Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Finally, some Christmas vacaton painting!

I usually take vacation the week between Christmas and New Years, but I always miss out on all the fun leading up to Christmas.  So this year I took the week before Christmas off!  Been havin' lot's of fun with my wife and girls.

Also, visited a few local galleries here in Oregon City.  Even found out about a local organization called the Three Rivers Guild which I'm going have to check out on their next meeting.  Looks like a great way to meet some other artists in this area.

So here's a few things I did today.  Continued work on an existing piece and sketched out a quick sketch for a new 6"x8" piece.  I'm going to try and knock out some smaller paintings and work on painting a little looser and simplify, simplify, simplify!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Back to the oils...

I actually got a chance to return to my oil paints this evening!!  Did some refinement to the house and roofs.  Also began dialing in the bridge a bit.  This one's still got a long ways to go and it's stretch for my skills at this point :-O

I'll be anxious to see how this one progresses...or digresses, whatever the case may be!!

Pristine Rose - Final

Okay, I'm going to call this one done.  Darkened the background with some deep blues and a little black.  I like the results!!  I'll probably post one more picture once I get this one matted and framed, but that'll be awhile.  I haven't actually framed any of my work yet, so that'll be fun. 

Now it's back to my oils again.  I'm going to try and finish up the Reflections at Flatford Bridge study.  I've gotta' figure out how refine the bridge so that it...well...looks like a bridge.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Layin' in the background...

Spent about 2 1/2 hours goin' after the background tonight.  I think a little more work on the leaves and I think I may increase the gradient from lighter towards the top and darker towards the bottom.  I've cropped this in my editor (haven't actually physically done any cropping).

I've learned alot on this one.  I've also learned just how much OP that Art Spectrum paper eats up too!!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

More work on the Pristine...

Finally, got a chance to spend some more time on the Pristine. Finished out the petals and tested some backgrounds along the top which will be cropped. There's basically four color swatches up top. I'm thinking the two greens to the right, and I think I favor the greens on the far right.

Also, plan to add a faint hint of the stem and leaves below the rose.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Pristine Rose - WIP

Started a new OP last night.  Been looking at this picture I took of a Pristine rose.  Finally, decided to try painting a flower.  This was really hard to draw until I drew a grid. Obviously, still WIP.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Whole painting!

It's been a whole week since I've had a chance to pick up a brush!  Finally, MADE some today.  Continued work on Reflections at Flatford Bridge, but the DVDs have long since been returned so I'm having to go off memory of what I learned while I had the DVDs.  Did some glazes over the trees and water and then layed in some sky. Nice to be painting again.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Johnnie Liliedahl Study - Reflections at Flatford Bridge

So I was excited to get my next DVD study by Johnnie Liliedahl from the other day.  This one is a two hour demonstration including some building structures and the main focus being reflections in the water.  I really like her teaching and style, having gone through her Forked Path study. She paints VERY loosely on the underpainting and glaze layers and then zeroes in on details in the painting phases.

So here's my underpainting.  At this stage, honestly, I have to wonder how I'll dial it into an actual painting worth looking at, but I felt that way with the Forked Path painting I did...and I liked how that one turned out :-)

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Blue Jay - Final (maybe)

I think I've pushed myself about as far as I can go on this without wrecking it.  Debated on whether to tame the bright branches on the right, but they actually show up more in this photo than in real life so decided to leave it.  Had a tough time laying in the berries.  My Erengi ArtAspirers are fairly firm OPs.  I have a few Senneliers which are alot softer and lay over the Erengi's very well...but didn't have any reds for the berries.  Note to self...pick up some more Sennelier's for the highlights!

So I think I'm done on this one (unless I go back a mess with those other branches)  ;-)

Monday, October 12, 2009

Blue Jay - WIP II

Finally, had a few hours free to for painting last night!  More work on the Blue Jay.  This part was scary...I like the Jay and was having problems dialing in the color on the background.  Lot's more work to go.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Blue Jay - WIP

Did a little more on the Blue Jay tonight. I'm just amazed by OP artists that can define such fine details in their OP paintings.  This is a fun painting though...I like working with many shades of blue.

Had another "duh" moment...discovered what those little metal tabs were for on my easel...yeah, they do a really nice job of holding onto my canvas without the easel itself getting in the way.  Neat!!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Switchin' gears...going OPs on this one...

This afternoon I sat down to draw with my daughter at the kitchen table.  Didn't have time to setup or cleanup the oils so I grabbed my oil pastels (OPs), found a good picture to "attempt" and got busy.  After the kids were in bed, I did a little more and decided to continue on this drawing to see where I could take it!  So at this stage this go either best OP yet...OR a real OP disaster. I've forgotten just how unforgiving OPs are compared to oils!!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Forked Path - Final....I think

Well, tonight I added some highlights, grass detail, and introduced some sky into the trees.  I think I'm going to call this one done and move on.  Learned alot and fun so this was success!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Carmel by the Sea...

This picture was taken by a friend on one of her vacations.  I started this painting even before my still life, but then set it aside for while. Came back, did a little more, and now I'm trying to figure out how to move forward with it.  The stairs have me a bit perplexed!

Here's an early version of the painting...

Here's a later version...added some of the roof tiles, refined some of the doorways and texture on the walls...

Practicing with Glazes...

So I met a professional artist named Doug Miller at his studio in Leavenworth, WA. He recommended I check out for teaching videos.  So I did. My first rental was a DVD - Johnnie Liliedahl's The Forked Path. It was a study in glazes.

So here's my first glaze layer.

And here's after another glaze layer and some opaques.

Apples anyone?

So here's my first still life in Oils.  I thought I was done with this one, but then decided it was too "orangey". So I came back later and deepened the red using a glaze.

Here's a couple of drawings of some rocks for an exercise on, using OPs.

Wood Duck

Then I got rather adventurous and decided to try and draw an animal…

My "studio"...

So here’s what my makeshift “studio” looked like when I started.

First crack at oil pastels (OPs)

Started playin’ with oil pastels in December ‘08.  I liked them enough that I bought a great 92 color OP set called ArtAspirer by Erengi.  Here’s the first painting I did with those.  I did this based on a monthly challenge on

Paintin' Shapes

Here are my first two oil paintings.  These were done as exercises from a book by Kathleen Lochen Staiger called “The Oil Painting Course You’ve Always Wanted”.  When I saw that book, I thought, “Hey, that books for me.  How did she know I always wanted an oil painting class!”

Found some old soft pastels...

I found a box of old soft pastels that I just had to try…

Did ya’ notice the sheep…yeah, those little white smudges…uh huh…those are sheep! ;-)

First Drawings...

Here are some of the first drawing I did back in October ‘08.

Gotta' love that nice fingerprint and Cheetoh stain on the landscape drawing....doh!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Half the fun of art is sharin’ the experience…

I used to enjoy drawing as a kid.  My mom even bought me a little oil paint set and some canvas boards.  I’m sure somewhere in her garage are some little paintings of mountains, trees…oh and for some reason I painted a little red outhouse.  I remember that one because I think that was my “masterpiece” at the time.
Somewhere along the way though, I just stopped drawing and painting.  I was 13 or 14.  I dunno…maybe girls and cars became more interesting to me at the time, but for whatever reason I just stopped drawing and painting.  That’s the way it was for 25+ years.   Funny thing is though…in the back of my mind I kept reminding myself how much I would really like to learn to oil paint.

Here about a year ago, I had a real “DUH!” kind of moment.  I’m grown up, I’ve got my own money, why not just buy some painting supplies and go for it?!  Well, that’s what did and I’ve been havin’ a ball ever since.   I bought a little pencil set first and started drawing.  I found some old Guitar oil pastels that my mom hardly used.  I thought those were fun so I bought a 90 color Art Aspire oil pastel set.  Then I found a great book on oil painting so I picked up some paints based on the pallet this author used.  Oh and even picked up nice plein aire easel using a gift certificate from my work.  Along the way I’ve also played with a few water colors and some soft pastels, too.

So as the title of this posts says, half the fun of art is sharin’ the experience and that’s what this blog is all about…right from the start.  I hope folks will enjoy my art and get a kick out of my mistakes.  I still have a hard time considering myself an artist…maybe that’ll change after I frame my first painting…who knows!  But in the meantime, feel free to look, comment, and even criteque what you see.
Thanks for lookin’!