Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Autumn Hillsides

Oil on Canvas
12 x 24

This is a very simple scene, but I really liked it. The contrast of the sunlit hill receding into the distance next to the nearer hill in shadow was very appealing to me. Add the light strip of the field in the foreground and the creamy clouds, and it really captured my attention. But I think the light branches of the sycamore trees are necessary to make the picture.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

cast drawings

I thought I would post a few of these drawings since I haven't had a chance to photograph anything new. About a year ago I decided to sharpen my drawing skills. So I started doing drawings of Bargue plates. I don't have access to the actual plates, but the book is pretty good. Having said that, none of these are from it. They're all stashed away in sketch books, and getting the paper to lay flat for a photo is just more trouble than it's worth. These drawings are fairly similar though.

This is one of the earlier drawings. The paper was a bit rougher than it should have been. There's just more "noise" than I would have liked. Live and learn right? You may think the nose is kind of funky too. It was actually broken off, so it's not really funky, it's just gone.

The paper problem has been corrected here. I think this one is fairly successful. One of the problems I have with the Bargue plates is the lighting. As I understand it the casts were purposely lit to minimize reflected lights. So you have a light, a dark and a transition tone which, to me, results in a flatter than necessary image. On this one I worked from a photo of the sculpture that I downloaded from the Louvre site. In the Bargue book there is also a plate of this same sculpture. At the risk of dislocating my shoulder while patting myself on the back, I like my version better.

This is just a bigger version of the same kind of drawings, this time in charcoal.

I don't know that anyone would consider these great art, the originals are, but these drawings, not so much. They weren't really meant to be. They were meant to be practice pieces designed to train the hand and eye. Look, see, draw, then check keeping the drawing as close to the image being copied as possible. Once you get good at rendering from two dimensions to two dimensions start doing the same thing except this time work from life, from a three dimensional object, maybe a real cast. Sound boring? Maybe, but if you want to really polish your drawing it works, and if its done right it works pretty fast.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Spring Rains

Oil on Canvas
22 x 36

I don't know what it is about me, but I love foggy, rainy days (to a point at least). This is one of them. Hopefully it speaks for itself because I don't have much to say about it right now. I'm finding that talking about my work is the hardest part of this blog stuff.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Winter Church

22 x 30

I was looking through photos trying to find something that might be of interest, and I ran across this one. It's a bit on the old side, but it's not too bad. On to the interesting part.

This was in a show once upon a time. When I have shows I like to kind of blend in and see what people really think. If they know you are the artist you rarely get true feedback. You get the "Oh this is wonderful" stuff whether it is or not. While that may be good for the ego, it really doesn't help all that much. Anyway, I was wandering around and there was this one guy talking to a rather attractive woman in front of this painting. A little eavesdropping seemed to be in order so I started listening to him tell her all about my painting. It seems that this piece is all about life and death and spirituality. The green tree represents life with the dead (actually leafless) tree and cemetery representing death. The church of course is the spiritual part. I don't know if she was buying all this, but I was quite impressed, especially since I had no idea that I had done that. I thought I was just balancing out lights and darks not commenting on life and death.

I guess I'm just a deep kind of guy, deeper than even I knew. Something was sure getting deep that night.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007


Oil on copper
3 x 7

I just noticed that I haven't posted a still life here. That could be because I don't do that many or maybe it's just an oversight. Either way it's time I corrected it. This is a tiny piece, more of an experiment using copper as a support than anything else. Copper is a rather interesting surface, very stable and archival. It's a bit smooth for my taste even after scuffing it up with some emory cloth. As a result the paint really slides around. I've got a couple more pieces to play with, but after that I think I'll stick to canvas, canvas panels or a true gesso panel for the times I need a really smooth surface to work on.

Monday, May 7, 2007



I don't have much to say about this, it's just a little drawing (the full size image is about actual size) of a sleeping figure. I think it came out rather nicely with that warm fuzzy feeling to it.