Friday, April 27, 2007

The Artist

Dick Blick had a sale on their acrylic brand of paints and you could buy 12 2oz. tubes for $33. Since I haven't used acrylic paint in years, my old tubes were as hard as rocks so this sounded like a good deal to me. For a couple of extra dollars I could also buy a chart that was designed to show you just what happens when each color is mixed in equal amounts with the rest of the colors in the chart line. Of course, I'm the proud owner of 12 colors and the chart has 40 colors. I got the feeling the acrylic painters don't like to mix much and would rather buy a bunch of premixed tubes. For my first project I wanted to do a 6x6 portrait of an interesting face. I chose a photo of an artist with a Beret who is standing in front of his painting. After penciling in the face onto the canvas board, I got to work with the acrylics. I think I painted 90% of the portrait before I started in oil. Acrylics are so fast drying and so opaque that the subject can be completed very quickly. I was ready for the application of oil in no time. I would guess that the finished work is 60% acrylic oil and 40% oil. I think this gentleman turned out quite handsome.

Monday, April 23, 2007

The Harvest

Harvest time on farms all around the country is a very intense working period in the lives of the farmers and their families. This is what this painting is all about. A family all working together to bring in their crop which is their livelihood to provide for the family.

Friday, April 13, 2007


I love the challenge of painting bright light. I was able to use a blacksmith and the red hot metal in a painting I did not so long ago and was trying to come up with another case where red hot light would be necessary. I was in a board meeting this week and was sitting next to a friend of my who is a glass blower when occurred to me that that would be a wonderful subject to paint. Now, all I needed was a photo of someone actually blowing glass. I think this young man fit the bill. I might go back when the painting is thoroughly dry and see if I can get the molten glass to look a little hotter and brighter but this is where painting is right now.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Dancing with the Stars

I love the TV show Dancing with the Stars and when I found this photograph of an older couple enjoying a whirl around the dance floor I had to paint it. I love the difference in their size and the sheer delight they are having gliding around in each others arms. I had a smile on my face the whole time I was painting it.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Old Master Method

I have always been intrigued with Old Master paintings so I wanted to see if I could do one. I started with a drawing of a girl, transferred it to a 6x8 inch canvas and did a full acrylic under painting. Because acrylic dries so fast I was ready for the glazing of oil paint in no time. Now is when things slow down. Glazes need drying time but I did put the work in the sun to speed the process up a bit. Now, rather than watch paint dry I started a landscape. I thought I'd try the acrylic under painting on this one too. The background of the forest I painted in darkest value, the rocks in middle value andthe water in lightest. With this painting, I was able to go almost immediately go to opaque oil. I put in cool and warm shades of forest leaves and then worked on the mossy rocks and fallen trees in the background. Then I went back to the portrait and added more glazes and finally opaque oil.
Doing two paintings at a time is fun.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Cow and Calf

I love painting cows. There is something cute about these bovine animals that is very appealing to me. Their eyelashes are wonderful! I remember taking care of twin calf's one summer whose Mother had died at their birth. My brother and the ranch manager's son and I were in charge of bottle feeding them several times each day from a huge glass bottle with a nipple made from the finger of a rubber glove and rubber banded to the top. We filled the bottle with milk we got from the other milk cows on the ranch. They were eager feeders and could polish off a bottle in no time. They progressed, gained weight throughout the summer and were eating grain by the time we had to leave for home.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

West Highland Terrier

Dogs are always sellers at our Gallery so I painted a West Highland Terrier which definitely has that ahhh appeal. I know a woman in town that owns one so I'm hoping she'll be at the opening night and snatch it off the wall.