Monday, August 29, 2016

Fish Painting



I just completed this 36x36" oil painting on canvas which was a commissioned piece of artwork for a customer and art appreciator. He came into our artist studio, Beach Studios, to look at art and saw a similar painting in progress on my easel. I had stopped for the day and left the piece on my easel just like this, black and white with just a little blue in the same areas. The customer and his wife liked the piece and asked me to create another for their home. I was more than happy to oblige and enjoyed creating a second painting for them. The piece is unframed, I painted the wrapped canvas edges. 

Friday, August 26, 2016

Abstract Painting Workshop

 I always like to try new techniques in art because I believe we learn from each different medium. I decided to participate in a 2-day abstract acrylic painting workshop titled Intuitive Art taught by Theresa Girard. Theresa is quite an accomplished artist and excellent instructor which really helped me because (as you know) my art is very detailed and realistic. I really hoped this class would help me loosen up a bit and experiment with shapes, value, color and line. Above is a black, white and three shades of gray value study, 12x12". I think it's okay although I'm not sure what to do with it next.



 This pieced together study is an exercise in charcoal in which Theresa instructed us to move in make certain marks with charcoal and then move away from the painting. We did this several times, in and out making various lines, marks and shapes. In the end we cut them up and reassembled the squares. I like what I've got started here and plan to do something with it.

The other three photos are of the various paintings done by students at the end of the second day. We walked around and Theresa critiqued our work and gave us suggestions. I won't show you mine, it's a big blob right now! I thoroughly enjoyed the workshop, learning from Theresa and also learning from my colleagues in the class. I definitely would take another abstract workshop, while I was extremely tired from thinking so hard after the two days, I enjoyed the journey to abstraction!


Tuesday, August 16, 2016

My Colored Pencil Workshop for CPSA

I was honored to be asked to be one of this year's workshop instructors at the Colored Pencil Society of America's international conference and exhibition in Tacoma, Washington. This one-day workshop is called Colored Pencil Goes 3D and I taught students how to design and finish a colored pencil box. In this workshop I taught the process of image transfer and then adding colored pencil on top, thus skipping the step of sketching out the design and also having somewhat of a grayscale image to help with the values. After completing two small drawings we learned how to adhere the drawings to the top and inside of the 5x5" Ampersand Claybord Box Kit.

Here are photos of just some of the very creative students working on their drawings. 



Here you can see this student is creating a seahorse drawing. The black and white image is shown along with the color reference photo and her small drawing is in front of her.


This student created a beautiful butterfly with colored pencils and I liked the way she left the transferred black and white image in the background without adding color.



This student decided to skip the image transfer process and drew directly on the Claybord surface with graphite, colored pencils and black marker. The Claybord is very smooth so it will only accept a limited amount of colored pencil but look how beautifully she is managing the floral design.

See more examples of creative artwork below! Everyone had their own variety of subjects and styles.







Monday, March 28, 2016

How to Start a Fine Art Collection

Pictured are three of my sea turtle paintings on sale at Epilogues, art and antiques in Bristol, Rhode Island.



I recently started thinking about how art appreciators and art buyers can start their own fine art collection after reading a post on Invaluable.com. During my many years of gallery sitting, I have often found that many people are often intimidated just to walk into a gallery to view artworks. Some people even think they shouldn't come in just to look if they aren't going to buy anything. We all love to view art and we all have our own preferences about types of subjects and styles of artwork we admire. So why is art intimidating? It isn’t! There is no right or wrong, you are free to enjoy any type of art you want to and to be unintimidated to go to any gallery or museum without hesitation just to view and learn more about art.

A nice way to start becoming familiar with art and artists is to start on the computer. Invaluable has a great website with many categories to help viewers become more informed by reading their articles about Must See Art Exhibits, 10 Contemporary Artists to Watch, Old Masters Perfecting the Art of the Frame and many other exceptional categories. You may decide that you’d like to start your own collection of art for your living space or for investment. Reading, researching and observing can assist in learning about art and becoming more familiar with styles of art and different artists in order to purchase and collect pieces. You may decide that you like the old masters’ work or the art of more contemporary artists. 

Under the For Collectors on the website, a person can find information about collecting many other categories such as antiques, fine jewelry, decorative art, furniture, Persian rugs, wines and even sports memorabilia. There are even tips for decorating and showing your art in your home. Would you prefer to buy art on line? Would you like to learn how to bid on items in an art auction right in your own home? There are also auction tips and where to find auction houses near your city. 

The Invaluable blog In Good Taste will aid in learning how to start a your own art collection and you can sign up to get weekly updates via email. I have found some great articles on the website. Some of the categories I enjoyed reading are How to Start a Fine Art Collection, 8 Must-See Art Exhibits This Spring, Specialists Speak: 2016 Trends & Predictions in CollectingHow To Flawlessly Flaunt Asian Art in Your Home, Up-and-Coming Wines To Collect (or Drink) This Winter and 7 Modern Marvels of Mid-Century Design.

Enjoy the many resources of this website and enjoy reading and collecting!

Friday, March 11, 2016

Teaching a Weekend Workshop

I am teaching a weekend colored pencil box workshop at the Providence Art Club which will be creative and a lot of fun. To sign up contact Angel Dean at angel@providenceartclub.org. Click for or more information on the Providence Art Club.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Big Fish Painting







I worked on this painting in the early fall of 2015 but I'm just getting around to posting it. I had seen a similar fish painting in a store, really liked it and thought about purchasing it. An artist friend came over to my house so I showed her a photo of the painting I liked and said I was thinking about buying it. She suggested I buy a big canvas and paint a fish myself, she said "what do you have to lose? Just try it." So that's exactly what I did. I bought a 36x36" canvas and used the photo of the fish painting I liked just as REFERENCE. I changed the fish to make it my own and really had fun with it. 

My painting is really a fun, decorative piece painted in acrylic. The first photo shows how I started with a very basic underpainting. I mixed black and ultramarine blue for the background and a beige for the fish. Next I added colored glazes to the fish mixing my acrylic with gel medium to make it transparent. I applied the paint on the fish with brushes and sponges. I had the most fun with the eye because it is so definitive and strong. The second photo is the fish in progress and the third shows the finished painting. The last picture is my finished painting hanging over my couch. I love to look at it every day and think about what I learned while painting in acrylic.


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Acrylic Painting




In the beginning of January I began taking an acrylic painting class with instructor Kelley MacDonald at the Providence Art Club. One of our first exercises was to take our subject and paint it first in black and white, second in black white and one mid gray and third in black, white and all shades of gray. It is a great learning exercise to help me become familiar with my subject before I paint it in color. I had to really think about simplifying the subject into first only two values, then three and then all values and I spent several hours on the exercises. The lesson plan helped me learn more about the different values in the turtle's shell before I took into consideration all of the colors.

My finished turtle painting is on 8x8" canvas.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

One more Pet Portrait





This is my latest pet portrait of Logan. It's 8x8" on Bisque Canson Mi Teintes paper. The tone of the paper compliments the fur in the dog. I used both Prismacolor and Faber Castell Polychromos colored pencils to work on the portrait. Logan in progress and my reference photos are beneath the finished drawing. 

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Pet Portrait Commissions



I am posting my three latest pet portrait commissions and the photos I worked from. I take commissions from customers and enjoy working on pet drawings. 

The first (above) is Chester, I was commissioned to draw his portrait in 8x8" colored pencil, varnished and mounted on an Ampersand 3/4" cradled Claybord. I am attaching the photo I worked from because it was not a good reference photo. Fortunately, the customer had other photos of Chester for me to use as reference to get the color of the fur, eyes and details.





Here is Rocco, he is drawn in colored pencil on white Stonehenge paper, 11x14". He was then matted and framed under glass for the customer. I've included the reference photo I used to work from. 




Here is Cyrus, also 8x8" on Stonehenge paper mounted to Ampersand 3/4" cradled Claybord. The first photo is his portrait, the second is a side view in order to see the Cradled Claybord and sealed/varnished drawing. The third is the reference photo that I worked from. 





Monday, November 2, 2015

Small Works Exhibit


I am pleased to be included in this small works show at the Handwright Gallery in New Canaan, Connecticut. The exhibit opens this Thursday, November 5 with an opening reception from 5-8 pm. The exhibit continues through January 2, 2016. Nice group of talented artists!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Printmaking Talk at Bristol Art Museum


Please Join Providence Art Club printmakers Sunday, Nov. 1 from 1-3 pm at the Bristol Art Museum for Process and Inspiration talks and demos on contemporary printmaking techniques in conjunction with our Joint Venture printmaking on exhibit at the museum. 
I will be talking about my handmade artist books which are on display. Other speakers will be Susan Patterson demonstrating the white-line woodcut, Richard Harrington, Madolin Maxey and Regina Partridge will discuss different approaches to monotype which is a one-of-a-kind print.
Bristol Art Museum is located at 10 Wardwell St, Bristol, RI and light refreshments will be served.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Flower Vase Book Sculpture




I have been inspired to create a vase of flowers cut out of books. I got this idea from a book I bought called Playing with Books: The Art of Upcycling, Deconstructing, and Reimagining the Book by Jason Thompson. I loosely followed his guidelines for cutting the spines off several books and cutting the other edge to form the vase shape. Next I glued the spines with Mod Podge and clamped them to dry. When the glue was dry, I glued the spines of all sections together and when that was dry, I was able to form the flexible circular shape. I held the center together with the interior cardboard from toilet paper rolls and more glue (top photo). 

The next part was the fun part, I learned how to  make origami lilies in several sizes and put together paper roses and leaves. I used several different toned book pages to create different tonality in the piece. 

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Mural Repair Work


I was asked to repair a mural that was painted in a clients' home, the signature at the bottom noted it was painted around 1952 or 1953 and hadn't been touched since then. The paint had begun to chip and flake off in several different areas and the owners were hoping it could be repaired. I've painted a few murals but am not versed in the best way to repair chipped paint so I conferred with a fellow artist, experienced in mural painting and received suggestions on how to proceed. First step was to carefully wash the entire mural surface and there was a layer of a grimy substance especially near the top which had most likely developed over the years.

Next I sanded off the areas that were flaking, which subsequently lead to more flaking paint as I sanded so I needed to be extra careful not to disturb more paint. For sanding, I used very fine sandpaper, 320 grit. Pictured below are the several problem areas.





Once the areas were sanded and clean, I sealed and preserved them with a layer of Liquitex Matte Varnish, to stop any more flaking and preserve the surface to be painted. Once the varnish was dry, my task was to mix the correct colors and touch up the chipped areas. I used several brands of acrylic paints and added Golden Molding Paste added to some of the raised areas to create texture.


This is the finished piece, repainted areas and a coat of Liquitex Matte Varnish applied to the entire mural to seal and protect it for future years.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Colored Pencil Talk in Jamestown, RI

Tomorrow evening I will be speaking about the fine art of colored pencil drawing and demonstrating colored pencil techniques in Jamestown, RI. The presentation is free and open to the public, everyone is invited. All information is on the flyer.


Sunday, June 28, 2015

Commission Work




I have been working on this colored pencil drawing of a bouquet of roses for a customer. She sent me photos of the roses and I chose the reference photo (top) which was the best to work from. I added three more roses to fill out the composition and make it more interesting. The middle photo is the drawing in progress. I worked this on Honeysuckle (?) Canson Mi Tientes paper, size of drawing is 7.5x10.5" The Mi Tientes paper is quite textured so I used the harder Faber Castell Polychromos pencils on top of Prismacolor Pencils to burnish or fill in space. 

The bottom is the finished piece, loosely drew the bottom area to blend and abstract the stems and leaves allowing the roses to be the focal points.