I haven’t posted in a little while and thought I would update on what I’ve been painting. I have been trying to paint every day now even if for just a little while. I know I need to paint a lot to get better. So I’ve been painting small while in the past I often paint large. And, I have some new painting friends that like to paint en plien air so I did my first outdoor paintings last week. I hope to do much more now that the weather is warmer.
So here are a couple of paintings, the ones I am more pleased with, done recently. There is an opportunity to hang some smaller paintings in a library next month so I am hoping to get one or two in there. Do you have an opinion on which of these is best?
This is a barn at the entrance to the Mills River Park in Jericho Vermont. I took photos of it last year, and finally got around to giving it a go. I like the shape and color vibrancy of the red barn and green foliage.
Most of you know I like birch trees. This time I wanted to paint a clump of birches, in spring, with a bright spring green backdrop. The daffodils in the foreground around the trees is inspired by my back garden which has these daffodils in front of a couple of beautiful birches. Continue reading “What I’ve Been Painting (an update)”
My most recent painting is now on youtube in a time-lapse video, with commentary, so you can see the process of how I painted it. Click to go to youtube video.
It includes my commentary on decisions I made along the way. So check it out along with some other painting videos I have on my youtube channel.
Video taping and then editing that video is a time-consuming process, and I need to work on better camera placement and lighting. Hopefully I will get better as I go, but if you like the video hit the like button on youtube, and subscribe to my channel and that will encourage me to do more!
This will likely be the first of a series of posts about other artists I draw inspiration from. For this first one, I used the inspiration of Alan Kingwell’s work to paint this picture I am titling “Winter Journey”.
Alan Kingwell is a UK artist who is self-taught. His work is incredible. You really should check out his YouTube channel and watch him paint or choose one of the videos that show some of his work. What I like about Alan’s work is the way he captures the light and mood of a place. Whether its the glow of a sunset coming through the base of a wave or the light filtering through a winter woods, he manages to really make the light seem alive. His seascapes are just amazing!
I think one aspect of his painting that appeals to me is that there is a certain ‘left-brain’ aspect to it that resonates with me. His creativity is obvious, but the attention to detail, the intricacy of his work appeals to my left-brain side that likes perfection and precision. Yet his paintings don’t feel at all static or structured. Most artists are strongly ‘right-brained’ which is the creative side of us, but many of us also have strong analytical or ‘left-brained’ aspects to our personalties too. This method of painting, with such attention to detail, can be a satisfying activity to feed that side of the brain in a creative endeavor. Continue reading “Alan Kingwell Inspired “Winter Journey””
I think every artist, whether just starting out or a seasoned pro, struggles with the urge to make every effort something they can be proud of, hang on a wall, or possibly sell. Its hard to spend limited time and effort and not have expectations.
However I have yet to meet an artist who if asked why they became an artist their response would be “to get rich”. Most of us explore our art because we have something inside that we need to express. Art, in its many forms, is fun. Creating things that elicit a response, within us or others, brings satisfaction. It’s easy to lose sight of this when confronted with limited time to pursue art. The creative process needs to be fun, and I’ve met many artists who found the most success with the work they did for themselves. Stuff that they didn’t think would appeal to others conveyed greater emotion and lead to greater success, in sales or commissions, than the stuff created for that purpose.
So its good to remember to give ourselves permission to have fun. Paint something new, try a new technique, and remove all expectations that the result will be worthy of anything more than painting over. Better yet, enter into it expecting to not be happy with the result. The goal is to play.
Last night I wanted to try doing a sky like I had seen done by a painter I admire by the name of Jan Blencowe. Her youtube video got me excited to try a scumbled sky, with more color and less definition than I am used to. So I grabbed an old canvas that I had experimented with painting clouds, and started painting over it. I decided to just do the top and see how it went. Continue reading “Permission To Play”
My first Winter Birch Forest Painting sold almost immediately. It has gotten more feedback than any painting I have done so far, and it was painted to specific requirements of the interior designer for the space it was to hang. So when it sold, I knew I had to expand the series and do a new Winter Birch Forest painting. Ultimately I plan to do a “Birch Forest” series encompassing multiple paintings in all four seasons. I really enjoy conceptualizing these birch forests, and choosing the birds to put in them. The choices are usually influenced by the birds I have been observing out my window the days prior to painting, and this time our resident downy woodpecker has been making the rounds.
I filmed the painting of both of these paintings and with some luck will be putting up a time-lapse video of the first of these on YouTube soon for those who would like to see how I approach these. Its possible I will do a short teal-time demonstration of how I paint the birch trunks with a little more detail. Its my goal to share how I learn and paint with anyone who is interested, as that is how I learn myself.
This painting is 16″ x 40″ x 2″ and the painting extends around the edges. It is currently on display at the Mad River Barn Inn and Restaurant in Waitsfield Vermont for anyone passing through.
Hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed painting it!