Friday, December 2, 2011

Artist's Statement

I have been working on my artist's statement over the past week or so. It took a lot or writing and rewriting on my iPad to finish it.

They say an artist's statement should be two to three paragraphs long and about 100 words. Mine is three paragraphs long and about 150 words, which is a bit long. That is about as short as I could make it and still say what I wanted to say, though.

This is what I came up with:
Some have described me as worldly; I enjoy international cuisine, fine wine, and world travel. All that would be meaningless, however, if I could not put it on canvas. I guess then that I am a worldly painter.

Many of my paintings show scenes in the kitchen, the most important room in the house, a meeting place for friends and family. Others relive the travel adventures my wife and I have taken to intriguing places. Through it all, I try to use the classic techniques of the old masters but with modern pigments and mediums.

Painting time is a peaceful time, a time of deep concentration. It is alone time. It is a time spent between me and the canvas. Each painting I do is like a journey to a city that I've never been to before. No matter how much I prepare, I do not know what it will be like until I get there.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

"Pumpkin Pie"

Here is my latest painting. I wanted to do a kind of Fall themed painting, something that would be good around Halloween and Thanksgiving. This is what I came up with.

This painting is an oil on linen, 24 by 18 inches.

Below are the notes I've taken while painting it:

Session 1 was basically the under-painting. I used transparent oxide brown for the whole thing. I think it turned out pretty well. The transparency of the pie dish comes through. You can tell what the various things are in the painting. All in all, I'm pretty happy with it. I may go in with a glaze of ultramarine blue to really darken up the deep shadows.

For session 2, I started on the pumpkins and the rim of the pie dish. I used terra rosa, cadmium yellow deep, cadmium yellow pale, cadmium red medium, transparent oxide brown, and a touch of ultramarine blue.

Session 3 saw a lot of changes. First, I laid in the background, a mixture of permanent green light, transparent oxide brown, titanium white, and a touch of ultramarine blue in the light areas.

Second, I worked on the pie dish. Here, I really struggled to mix the turquoise of the transparent glass. I mixed up all sorts of combinations of cadmium yellow, ultramarine blue, permanent green, and titanium white with no success. I then searched my paints to find another green. That is when I found viridian. I had never really used it before. However, I found that it was the turquoise I was looking for. I used that directly, and then some mixed with titanium white. It was perfect.

Lastly, I darkened up my darks with ultramarine blue, mixed with transparent oxide brown. I also added a light glaze of ultramarine blue to my wood areas. I may go in with another glaze of transparent oxide brown again, to darken things up and add a little warmth back in.

For session 4, I worked on the whipped topping container. I like the container because of its blue color, the compliment of orange. That works well with the pumpkins.

For session 5, I worked on the reflections in the table. It really made the painting pop. I think it might be done. I will sit on it a few days, and see if I want to change anything.

If you want to see the progress over time, use the links below:

Session 1
Session 2
Session 3
Session 4
Session 5

Friday, November 4, 2011


Here is the under-drawing for my new painting. This one has sort of been a long time coming. I set up the still-life, took some reference photos and was getting ready to put it on the canvas when I scrapped it, panicked, and had to reformulate the idea. I am happy with my second go-around, though. I think it has a nice fall theme. I'm hoping that I finish the painting before fall is over.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Impressionism/Expressionism Class

These two paintings were done in class. The idea was to work with a large brush and put the painting down a quickly as possible. Both these paintings are in oil on a 16 by 20 inch canvas. Each were done in about 2 hours.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

"Juicy Fruit"

Here is my new still-life. It is on a 16 by 20 inch canvas, and is in oil.

Over time as I painted it, I took notes after some of the sessions. You can read those below:

For session 1, the under-painting, I used two pigments, terra rosa, and transparent oxide brown.

For session 2, I filled in some of the background. Rather than using one pigment for the whole thing -- what my painting instructor calls house painting -- I mixed up some various shades and tints of green, the lighter ones being cooler, and the darker ones being warmer. I dabbed it on making subtle variations, pushing darker foreground items with lighter paint, and the opposite with lighter foreground items. It was a little bit of an experiment. We'll see if it works.

For session 4, I toned back the background a bit. I thought that the texture of the background was competing with the rest of the painting. Also, each session, I darken up the wood using transparent oxide brown. The reflections in the wood are quite bright, so I may tone them back with a glaze later on.

Session 5 was supposed to be done. In fact, I signed it. Over about a week, however, I did some touch ups. As a result, I made it into its own session below.

If you want to see the progress over time, check out the links below:

Session 1
Session 2
Session 3
Session 4
Session 5

Sunday, July 24, 2011


Here is the under-drawing for a new still-life, another kitchen still-life. It is on a 16 by 20 inch canvas.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Portrait Painting, Week 6

Here is last week's painting finished. To be honest, I liked it better as a monochrome. It think it was very striking with the difference between light and shadow. Still, it is not bad, so I'm putting it up.

Actually, my instructor likes it better with color, so who knows.

This painting is in oil, on a 11 by 14 inch canvas.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Portrait Painting, Week 5

This week we had a live model, a (rather masculine) woman with a mohawk. We will have the model next week as well, so this is a painting in progress. In fact, it is a monochrome using one pigment, transparent oxide brown, that I plan to use as the under-painting. Next week, I hope to finish the painting.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Portrait Painting, Week 3

This is my painting for this week's Portrait Painting class. It is in oil, on an 11 by 14 inch canvas.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Portrait Painting, Week 2

My new class, Portrait Painting, continued this week. This is the painting I started in class, and finished at home. It is in oil, on an 11 by 14 inch canvas.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Portrait Painting, Week 1

I started a new class this week, Portrait Painting. This is the painting I did in class. It is in oil, on an 11 by 14 inch canvas.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Pre-portrait, Week 6

Here is last week's painting finished:

Monday, February 28, 2011

Pre-portrait, Week 5 - Continued

Here is the under-painting for the next still life we are doing in class. It is 8 by 10 inches, done in one pigment, terra rosa. The still life is of a vase, nectarines, and a flower.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Pre-portrait, Week 2

This week, we worked on a still-life of some pears sitting on a wooden shelf. I did this painting monochromatically using a pigment called Terra Rosa. It is on a 9 by 12 inch canvas.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Pre-portrait, Week 1

I am taking a new class at the Drawing Studio. This time, the class is called Pre-portrait, which is basically a still-life painting class, to prepare for painting portraits.

This week, we did a small, monochromatic painting. Mine was done using one pigment, Van Dyke Brown. It is on a 9 by 12 canvas. The subject is basically cloves of garlic.