Monday, June 27, 2016

knowing when to quit

Yesterday was the annual Fort Madison Area Arts Association garden tour. I like the access to private gardens but the trade off is lots of visitors. I do like that it is often friends I haven't seen in a while. I don't know if the distractions were the reason I was unhappy with this painting or my usual odds of failed paintings. I am used to constructive criticism but one of the visitors stood over my shoulder and dictated which lily did not look right, not why it failed, just that I needed to fix it. So I painted on, Granted I was not happy with the painting anyway, Her "help" was like people who complain about politics but don't have any solutions. I got home and wiped the painting off, the end. 

I did take this photo so that later I can critique it without stress. I think maybe it could use more lost edges and one of the lilies needs to be the center of attention. Anyone who wants to post their opinion is welcome, just remember "What would you do to fix this?"

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Into the Woods

I stopped along the road to take photos of these cattle hoping for a perfect composition. This one stuck me as interesting painted exactly as the photo. I had considered putting a cow facing left in the back with its head in the large green space, possibly more in shadow. That may be for another time. The ground for this is close to the color of the cattle.
14" x 11" oil on canvas on panel

Friday, June 24, 2016

Devil's Creek

This is a spot I used to go to years ago. When the river is up the road there gets flooded. When it recedes the road is broke up and full of deep potholes. But worth the slow drive around the potholes. It is a great fishing area, so I have shared the bank with fishermen and women.
12" x 6" oil on canvas

A walk on a trail through the tall weeds will lead to spots on the bank with this great view under the bridge. It was too challenging for me to capture the reflections of the waves on the bridge, but I had to try. 
14" x 11" oil on canvas

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

When They Spot Me

This is the day to tweak my paintings. On this one the rabbit on the right looked too big in relation to the others. Still not sure. 

The rabbit on the lower left looks a little deformed in the face. Tweaked that and fixed the back. The original scene was just grass leading into the shadow. I just made up the landscape and had fun with it. I guess I just needed a break from reality.
12" x 9" oil on canvas panel


Update with Cattle


This is a painting from a previous post. I decided to add the cattle that I had taken photos of.
10" x 8" oil on panel

The original photo was taken under different lighting conditions. Although this may be more accurate because I have been using Pthalo Blue a lot lately. I like the deep rich color but it does take some time getting used to.


This is what it would look like cropped to 8" x 8" .


View from the Cemetery

This started with a ground of Burnt Sienna mixed with liquin. I painted into the still drying ground. Most of the colors worked well this way, except for the sky. I finally brushed it on rather thick. 
8" x 8" oil on canvas

Monday, June 20, 2016

Early Morning

A quick run up to the park to catch the early morning light. A repeat of the scene from the previous post on June 4th.
6" x 8" oil on panel



Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Bangert Gardens

Our plein air painting group had the opportunity to paint in Bangert Gardens. It was gorgeous with way too many vistas and put together for maximum impact. The smoke trees were at their best. I attempted to paint this one but fell short on the colors
6" x 6" oil on panel

They had statures throughout the gardens with this one capturing the joy of  just being there.
12" x 6" oil on linen panel

This was just a studio piece I painted to warm up for a larger piece. It does fit the theme of a view from the garden.
8" x 6" oil on canvas panel



Monday, June 13, 2016

View from the Farm

Went to a farm to paint cattle but instead I took photos of them and painted this view. Painting directly on slick white Utrecht gesso shows the brushstrokes. It was a struggle but I kind of like the look. Also it would be easier to wipe off and that would leave a nice ground.
10" x 8" oil on panel

This was the view from the side of the road. I am not as happy with this done on a burnt sienna ground. The corn is knee high but this does not show it well. This one I should have wiped off.
6" x 8" oil on canvas panel


Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Skunk River Stream

This is the view of one of the streams feeding the Skunk River. This is one I will have to come back to later. 
11" x 14" oil on panel

Monday, June 6, 2016

New crops

This is cropped to 8" x 8" from a 9"x 12" original. I took a class from John Preston and we painted simplified cow shapes. This is my attempt as simplification. 

The original.



Sunday, June 5, 2016

Galland School

Along river road is Galland School; Iowa's first known pioneer school built in 1830. The original was cut up and used for firewood. This model of the original 10' x 12' school was built in 1940. Prior to that the Keokuk Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution marked the school's original site with the boulder and plaque in 1924. 
10" x 8" oil on panel

Cropping to a 6 x 8. I went to this site thinking I would have a nice view of the river as a background; this is one of those times I wish the trees were bare. 

Saturday, June 4, 2016

morning at Rodeo Park

Started at 6:20 pm about 20 minutes later than I planned. In the one hour I painted, the shadow at the bottom right moved out of the scene. The upper portion stayed reasonably close to the same. Early morning light is beautiful but fleeting.
12" x 6" oil on panel

Plein Air

Last Saturday during  Paint Van Buren County the clouds were out in all their splendor. 
12" x 6" oil on canvas

The painting from the two hour quick paint, The new bridge and trail system along the Des Moines river outside Keosauqua, Iowa made for inspiring scenes.


Friday, June 3, 2016

Paint Van Buren County

Last weekend was the inaugural plein air event for Van Buren County. A three day event that started Friday with a quick paint under the bridge in Keosauqua, Iowa. This painting was my last one; painted on Sunday morning as I stood at my easel in full sun. Came home with a sunburn and the money from the sale, well worth it.
12" x 9" oil on Raymar panel. 

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Little Library

Thanks to the Fairfield Arts Association the city of Fairfield Iowa will have approximately 16 little libraries in Fairfield's Central Park. They will be set up in time for the First Friday Art Walk. This should be a very creative group with artistic as well as architectural expertise. If you cannot make it to the unveiling they will be on display all summer with silent bidding to start in August and end on the First Friday in September.

This is my entry with help from my husband who built it and offered more than enough suggestions for the images. Also thanks to the neighbor girl and her friend who posed for me.





Sunday, May 8, 2016

Storm on the Horizon

A cloudy day that I added a distance storm, because with a painting you can. 

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Indian Summer

Another view of the kayak from a previous post. This was from a photo taken late last September during an Indian Summer which is a period of unseasonalby warm, dry weather in autumn, in this case after the leaves have fallen. Probably would have been easier to paint when the trees had nice autumn colors.  

I enjoy the feedback and based on that:



 and

Thanks for commenting, Sue Marrazzo.



Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Late Afternoon on Wilson Lake

When you want to plein air paint but not enough time. Using the paint left over from the last painting.
8" x 8" oil on stretched canvas.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Runoff Stream

I wanted to paint this from the bank but could not find a trail down. The challenge of painting this perspective was appealing. 
6" x 12" oil on panel