November 25, 2013

Soon to Be At Studio B!

We got the official word today!  Artist LInda Button and I will be sharing a studio at Bethesda's Studio B!  This is what the outside of the space looks like -- there are three studios inside when you go down the hall.  We'll be in the first one.  The space is in the Air Rights Building, which is connected to Bethesda Metro by a tunnel.

We'll be moving in sometime int he next month, planning to be fully in the space by January 6.

Light in June - start of a painting

You will see blogs that feature daily painters -- people who work on and finish a small 6 x 6 inch painting every day.  A lot of them are fruit and cupcakes, maybe just a little formulaic and sweet, however technically accomplished they may be.  I mention this because I think I am heading into having a blog of the paintings I start but never finish.  Having just made myself a promise that with the cold weather forcing me to stay in studio, I would work on paintings I'd started before and actually finish them... I couldn't face the stacks of paintings in my studio.  Nice idea anyway.  

Since last June, when I participated in a show at Gallery B in Bethesda, I've been thinking about an afternoon when the light was streaming into the gallery and through a vase. I'd cut flowers from my garden that morning to put out --  lilacs and "puffs" and leaves from purple smoke bush (cotinus coggygria). It was too bad, really, that another of the artists in our show was allergic to lilacs!  So the arrangement didn't stay there for long.   There was warm light coming through the vase and cool light coming through the tinted windows and it was just beautiful.  I took a photo so I could remember it.  And now, so I could paint it.  Or at least start painting it.  

November 18, 2013

Under the Bridge

This is the last planned day of outdoor painting -- how amazing that the weather was warm, sunny and beautiful!

I think I painted this bridge 7 or 10 years ago, but have crossed it many, many times on the way to paint along the canal or hike the Billy Goat Trail.  Today I chose a slightly sheltered spot to try to get my light painting set up out of the wind.

The goal painting this was to get you to look under the bridge. In spite of how softly I painted the bridge railing, it's hard not to focus in on the wood forms.  Still, I think I got that dark reflected water under the bridge to draw your eye down there.

November 11, 2013

Canal Vision & Updating

On Monday, I set up at the same spot as last week.  Many more leaves had fallen, so the view of the Potomac river was clearer.  It was a crisp, brilliant, calm day, so the reflection in the river was striking.

On Wednesday, rather than brave the cold, I set this up in the studio to see if I could work the shapes within the landscape and use thicker paint than I'd splashed on when I was outside.

November 6, 2013

C & O Canal -- A little abstract painting

 This morning we were painting at the C & O Canal, looking through the trees to the Potomac River.  I had just started to brush in broad areas of color, when Walt Bartman came over and took the painting away from me.  His comment was that I'd put down something unconventional and interesting, and if I kept working on it, I'd just turn it into an ordinary painting.  Ouch.  But true.  And something to think about.

I put that one down and did a second painting before the clouds cleared completely and turned the soft mauve/yellow world we were painting into a crisp, brilliant color with a vivid blue sky.

November 4, 2013

Garrett Park Painting Update

This painting has been through a lot of stages. This morning it was immediately clear to me that I'd been wrong to pick up the red brick in the house on the left of the painting,  Its light value was a distraction from the focus of the painting, which was the strong light on the right.  Once I fixed that, the red reappeared as a new color for the umbrella.  Much better.  Introducing black into the painting helped ground the blue.  Not done yet, but much closer than where I was last week.

November 2, 2013

Studio B! And a Camelot Update

It looks like I'll be moving into new studio space in the next couple of months! Bethesda's Studio B has space for 6 artists and I'm one of them.  I am hoping -- as my painter friend Christine predicts -- that I will be much more productive.  We'll see how 2014 goes.  The space is at the end of a tunnel that goes from a building on Wisconsin Avenue to the Bethesda Metro.

I've been working on and off building the color in the "Camelot" painting.  Here's where it stands now. Much more paint to come, but I think the wind, sun and puppies are coming through as I'd hoped.

The Race T-Shirt

The 5K Race that I did the t-shirt art for is tomorrow, Nov 3.  Today was packet pick up day and I'm already seeing people out wearing the shirt!  There's a definite split among people who get the New Yorker Saul Steinberg reference and people who don't.  But everyone seems to get the humor!