Thursday, November 30, 2017

Commission:

 (Untitled) Final Drawing 6x8"

I was recently commissioned to do a 36x48" southwest desert scene painting for a public space in Oklahoma city... Not exactly mid-western fare landscape-wise, but the client's vision for the space required some "western" atmosphere, and of course this is a subject I can really get into~


I first did about 10 thumbnail sketches based on my plein air paintings and sketchbook doodles from a trip to southern Utah and Maynard Dixon's homestead/studio last year...




  
After reviewing the pencils and using examples from previous paintings on my website and social media, we agreed upon an amalgamation of several of my thumbnail roughs into the final design (at the top of the page)...

 

Here are the final canvas stained and ready to paint (background) and a 16x20 "test" painting (with altered composition) under way to make sure I've got my colour palette working...
 

So far I've done about a dozen drawings and 4 colour studies in various sizes...you never can do too much homework before undertaking an important commission!











Saturday, November 25, 2017

THANKFUL!

 "Fertile Valley" (9x12) o/l

Thank you to my collectors and Maxwell Alexander Gallery yesterday for giving homes to these 3 paintings at the their Black Friday sale -- all 3 sold in the first hour!


 "Autumn Song" (9x12) o/l

These miniatures were done specifically for the sale, but also serve duel purpose in functioning as studies for larger paintings in progress~



"Desert Run" (9x12) o/l

VERY thankful this holiday season for the privilege to do this for a living, and for the support of my family, my galleries and all who find my work worthy to own -- Happy Thanksgiving everyone!









Monday, November 20, 2017

Is it done yet?

 "When Work Is Done" (20x24) o/l

This new piece, "When Work Is Done" will be featured in March at the 2018 Night Of Artists at the Briscoe Museum in San Antonio, Texas.  

When I was invited a few months ago I began this painting, and since it was the first finished of three that I will send, I had extra time to scrutinize it. I painted it rather quickly and tried to not finesse it to keep it's freshness, but after looking at it off and on I've noticed things that needed changing... Its always nice to have a period of time to consider work before it goes out the door as often the little nuances that need to be added, deleted or corrected are not immediately obvious...


(Original background colour)

For instance, I realized I wanted more colour harmony between the background wall, the porch floor and the guitar -- this necessitated bending the wall colour toward a much warmer tone by scumbling over it with some of the peach tones I used in other areas, while not completely obliterating the green underneath. I also loosened up some of the shadow edges, and added some fall leaves to give it  extra depth as well as a few more colour notes to key the whole palette together.

One of the reasons I don't particularly care for alla prima paintings (single session painting) is that fact that I always want to go back in (or over) areas of a composition later to create a better outcome; this is partly due to the effects I prefer that cannot be accomplished wet-into-wet. Working into wet paint of course affords immediate gratification with blending, etc., but there are textures that can only be achieved when the initial foundation layer is at least tacky on the surface. More time between sessions on a painting also lends sufficient time to contemplate the work thus far, and decide if it is indeed time to stop or not. 

As a famous artist once said,  "A painting is never finished, just abandoned"....of course as painters our goal is to abandon them at the optimum time~




Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Recent California Sketches

 "Laguna Canyon" (9x12) o/c 

Here are a few small paintings and studies I did on my two recent road trips to southern & northern California... In August we went down to L.A. for the opening of my solo show, "End of the Trail" at Maxwell Alexander Gallery, and also for family vacation time that took us to Mexico to visit my folks...


 "California Light" (12x12) o/l

In September I drove back down for the Sonoma Plein Air event, which I enjoy immensely for it's beautiful hill-covered vineyards and rugged coastal scenes. I also got to paint with friends I only see once a year...

 "Blue Eucalyptus" (8x10) o/c

Painting in Sonoma is a kind of California "fix" for me as I miss my roots living in the northwest part of the country now; anytime I can get down to my home state (especially to paint) I take it!


"TwilightMoon"(6x8) o/l

 Laguna Beach is another favorite place for me having visited there since I was a kid in the 60's and 70's and then rented studio space in the 80's. It's not quite the same as back then, but still has a charm and beauty unlike any other on the west coast...

"Three Arch Bay" (9x12) o/l

I was fortunate to hook up with a childhood friend who now owns a quaint little beach cottage in Three Arch Bay (a very exclusive and hard-to-get-into place with it's own secluded beach). We were able to spend a couple of days there, swimming and painting; it was a beautiful and memorable visit -- thanks again Danny, see you next time!











Friday, August 11, 2017

Show Opening August 19th~

"Smugglers" (30x40) o/c

My new solo show, "End of the Trail" opens next weekend, Saturday, August 19th at Maxwell Alexander Galley in Los Angeles, CA.  This show will include 13 new oils ranging in size from 16x10 to 30x40. 

These paintings are all within the western genre and revolve around the metaphor of the "trail" (our life's journey) with it's various experiences, and emotions... Reception times are 6:30 to 8:30pm, and catalogs are available thru the gallery~


Hope to see you there!








Tuesday, August 8, 2017

 "Sycamore Trail" (23.5x28.5) oil on linen

This image was comprised from sketchbook drawings, photos, plein air sketches and imagination...
I always go thru a series of thumbnails-to-tighter pencil drawings, working out a composition, and this was no different except that I had some small plein air paintings as a foundation to springboard from...

 Sketch book thumbnails

The painting below (sans the horse which was added later) was done in the foot hills of Saddleback Mountain in Orange County, CA last spring. The horse was added later via a photograph my dad provided from near his home in Mexico. For the larger, "Sycamore Trail" I wanted the rider and pack horse to be scaled way back in  mid-ground so the painting would be formerly a 'landscape' rather than the horses & rider taking the spot light. The supporting trees in the background came from another plein air sketch I did in Irvine Park not far from the painting below...


 
"Waiting" (field sketch 9x12) oil on panel SOLD

I am not quite adept enough yet at pulling accurate horse anatomy purely from imagination, so photo reference was necessary, especially for the horses in motion (something I am constantly studying) but overall I'm pretty happy with the somewhat early California Impressionist feel this one turned out having...






Friday, July 28, 2017

Outdoor quick sketches~

Scotch Church Road (9x12) oil on panel

These are just a sample of field sketches I've done lately, studying colour for my larger western studio paintings...

 Untitled (9x12 cropped) oil on linen

These were all done not far from home in Tualatin, Hillsboro and Sherwood, Oregon.

Summer Pond (9x12) oil on panel

Even when on a deadline with studio work for galleries, I still make time to get out and paint from nature -- the ONLY way to learn the subtle nuances of light and colour...






Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Signature Artist Member with California Art Club!

"Waiting" (12x16) o/c

So happy to be upgraded to "Signature" Artist Member of the California Art Club!

This is a very prestigious art club founded in 1909 and built on the foundation of promoting and supporting contemporary-traditional fine art.  CAC is one of the oldest, largest and most active art organizations in the country, boasting past memberships of such notable west coast painters as, William Ritschel, Euphemia Fortune, Hanson Puthuff, Edgar Payne, William Wendt, etc.

I am very excited and honored to be part of such a great organization, and look forward to many years participating in their events and exhibitions!