Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Skunk River Access

Such a nice day that I took the dog out with me plein air painting. I know that sounds like he paints :) What he does do is wade in the water as soon as he is off the leash. I take about a couple of hours to paint so he should be dry by then. Unless he goes back in for one more dip, which he did. Oh well, we both enjoyed the weather.

12" x 6" oil on canvas panel

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Late Afternoon Light

The last snow fall and I got out to photograph after it melted off the branches. 
12" x 9" oil on canvas

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Project AWARE

This is from last year's project AWARE, i.e. A Watershed Awareness River Expedition.

Sponsored by the DNR, adventurous volunteers, spend 5 days in canoes and kayaks picking up trash along Iowa River ways. Most anyone can do it; all you need is some free time, a strong back, and a weak gag reflex. You will, in return, enjoy the company of like minded individuals and be treated to a show of some of Mother Nature's finest work. Described as RAGBRAI on the river, this is definitely on my bucket list. The volunteers in these painting were cleaning up the Des Moines River, by Bonaparte, Iowa. In 2017, from July 10th through the 14th. Project AWARE will be cleaning the Cedar River to bring it back to its natural beauty.
12" x 9" oil on canvas

10" x 10" oil on canvas

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Early Morning Early Fall

Finished painting 
16" x 8" oil on canvas

Started this painting by trying out some acrylic markers I just bought. I think I may need to play with them more. First rough in.

I painted oil over the acrylic. My original intention was to paint acrylic, maybe next time.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Horses Two Quarters

I had fun with these two. I decided to get a little detailed for the sake of those shiny coats. The original photo did not have a distant horizon just grass all around. I have been experimenting with Prussian Blue for the greens. Often adding a hint of brown or red to the hansa yellow and prussian to tone down the "electric green" it creates.
14" x 11" oil on canvas panel

Started with blocking in the horses. I always find it hard to position the legs of partially hidden horses, so I procrastinate. The two horses were from two different photos. I use Photoshop to cut out the horse on the left and place it into the photo of the other one. It works if the photo of the two horses were taken the same time of day.

Once the horses were fully complete I used a palette knife to create the background. Trying to create a feeling of depth I added a bit of gray blue to the front greens.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

White Oak Lake

I missed posting this from a plein air outing last fall. 
14" x 11" oil on canvas

Lacey Keosauqua Creek Oil

This is an oil painting of a previous scene I did in pastel. The local art center is having a themed exhibit titled "Many Hats". My take on that is to paint the same scene in different mediums, pastel, oil, acrylic and watercolor.

Dun Horse

I started this painting years ago and put it aside unfinished. It was composed in Photoshop by moving the horses around on a background. Below are the various versions. 
16" x 16" oil on Ampersand gessobord.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Abstract in Nature

Painted this plein air last fall. The scene had an abstract quality to it. I like a lot of abstract art and have swapped my art for theirs. This I was painting just for the fun of it.
12" x 9" oil on canvas

This was painted a few years ago with the same idea.

Another abstracted landscape painted a few years ago

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Sports awards

I have a commission to draw the nominees for the sports banquet. This job was given to me at the last minute and I was also expected to write the short bio from stats in outline form given me. I guess the bios are right but if they aren't it is because I don't know what they are talking about.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Under the Shade Tree

This was an update originally the front legs seemed natural. 

Back to painting from photos. This time challenging myself to fix an image by filling in the background with something I made up. I also edited the main image mostly to make it easier by simplifying it. You don't have to paint every spot unless it is a commission.
12" x 6" oil on canvas

I cut out the background to make it easier to concentrate on the horse shapes.

Friday, December 30, 2016

Lacey Keosauqua Creek no 3

I had a framed watercolor painting from over 3 years ago. On the reverse side of the watercolor I applied pastel ground and created this pastel. If it hasn't sold in 3 years move on. 

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Winter and Fall

This is from a photo taken after plein air painting. The fleeting moment when the sun is low on the horizon. I don't think I can capture that before it changes.
12" x 12" oil on panel

Again from a photo but not because the light changed but because I am just not tough enough to set up in the cold. Photos do not capture the subtle colors. This was of a stand of evergreen trees in a local park. I may have to go back there and plein air paint.
12" x 12" oil on panel

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

recent paintings

Commission to go with a previous painting of  another dog. I started with a burnt sienna mixed with liquin and painted into this. This method was how I created the first painting
12" x 12" oil on stretched canvas

Fall at Wilson lake this year has not been as colorful. This is an opportunity to play with neutrals
12" x 12" oil on stretched canvas

Saturday, November 26, 2016


I had this framed long format painting that just did not work. It sat on my "fix it" someday pile. I finally just threw it away and made another panel. This was from a photo reference looking down at the water overflow from the Oakland Mills dam. I wanted a challenge. I was not sure if this should be up, down or sideways, I guess it is any way the client would want it.
8" x 23" oil on panel

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Late Fall at White Oak Lake

Pastel painting from a photo. I did paint plein air in oil that day, but wiped it off. 
12" x 17" pastel on Wallis paper.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Pastel and Oil

Playing with pastel and oil using the same photo reference. I started with a pastel painting trying to loosen up as I often get bogged down with details.
Then the oil. I did go back to more detailed renderings.

Trying to make a suggestion of cattle in pastel.

Another pastel of the same image.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Along the Rocky Shore

I would like to paint the water flowing over the dam at Oakland Mills but you face the reflection on the water. I turned my attention to the rocky shore with interesting green moss and a distant bank for depth.
6" x 12" oil on canvas

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Sunlight on the Water

Hoping to go out today, in the meantime artwork based on photos taken after plein air painting. If is looks familiar I did it in a square format. They still come out different in color and contrast if the scene is this complicated. Still challenging. 
12" x 9" oil on panel

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Recent Paintings

Geology Center
Just finished this. The Geology Center at Cornell in Mount Vernon, Iowa.
14" x 11" oil on panel

Shari's Horses
Rough in starting with burnt sienna and ultramarine blue. The client wanted the painting to be exactly like a photo she supplied.
I did add a little more color than the gray day allowed. I also edited the exaggerated perspective. 
14" x 11" oil on panel

I managed to get out once for a quick plein air painting while the weather was nice.
10" x 8" oil on panel