Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Setting Up A Still Life

Beat the winter blues!  Add some color to your life.  The trick with still lifes is to use complimentary colors.  (ex: orange with purple, blue with yellow)  Keep the arrangement simple 3-5 items tops. Use strong light source.  (cool light on warm objects, warm light on cool objects).

Use your viewfinder to crop the scene.
Paint it!

This is a small 6x6" study.

Work from life, daily if you can, and before long you'll start to notice more, edit more and your paintings will improve.

one of my favorite still life painters is Sarah Sedwick. Google her videos!

Have fun!

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Snow Painting...some beauties!

   by Aldro Hibbard, artist from Rockport, MA.  Look at the incredible play of colors..the green tree against the red side of the building.  I also love how he simplified the distant trees using many vertical strokes.

 Another gem from Aldro Hibbard...Luscious colors, nice chunky brushwork!
I'm guessing he used some viridian or phalocyanine green in the distant water?

Doesn't get much better than this, right?  Beautiful diagonal composition, interesting subject matter with person in the landscape.  I love the lost edges on the birch trees.  Subtle value changes in the snow...incredible painting!

This beauty is by contemporary artist, Michael Severin.  Amazing depth, gorgeous colors and great composition.  Shadow pattern adds so much to this painting.  The dark rocks in lower right corner ground and redirect you into the painting.

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Paint a Series!


9x12 study started on location

               9x12 study painted in the studio from reference photo.  (location in Vermont)
 8x10 study in studio after cropping down the 9x12 and painting it more like a nocturne.

It's fun and helpful to stick with a subject matter for awhile and see what happens.  I've been exploring snow and working from some reference photos I took while hiking in Vermont last year. The top two paintings are actually based on a site in Milford that didn't have snow.  

Here's the site.  It's on West River St., just before the Dog Park at Eisenhower.  I'll have to revisit this spot in the Spring or maybe in a few weeks when and if it finally snows !

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Nuts and Bolts of Painting?

What are some things to keep in mind when you paint?
Here's a few:


1. can the eye travel through your painting

2. creating a center of interest

3. thinking abstractly

4. composing with mass instead of detail

5. designing with patterns


1. setting up simple values in your painting

2. keying the values of your painting

3. separating the values of the large planes in a landscape

4. reflective light

5. shadow values


1. mixing color with a limited palette

2. using color to create variation

3. broken color and detail

4. color of shadows

5. value and temperature contrast


1. creating hard and soft edges

2. painting sky holes in trees

3. how to handle detail

4. how to paint loser

5. adding texture with palette knife

Friday, January 3, 2020

Setting Art Goals

I like Goals.  I keep a journal listing goals, dreams and random thoughts.  There's categories in my journal page:  Art, Art Business, Health, Family, Home,  etc.

 I usually spend part of each Sunday night planning out the coming week, scheduling in my Painting Time and other activities related to improving as an artist. I pre-post things on FB, and do some non-painting chores.   Writing down my goals or tasks seem to get them set in motion, and clears my head.

Having an "Action Plan" helps fight off the continual feeling of  "I should be painting!" The categories help me stay balanced and feel less guilty, more realistic, more focused!

Here's a link to a website that had some really good info!

How to Take Charge of Your Creative Goals