Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Step on It

DeBlois Gallery in Newport is having an open exhibit titled "Step on It" which seems like it will be a very interesting and fun show because artists are going to interpret the theme in so many different ways. I immediately thought of shoes since I have such a collection of them. Maybe not the most original idea - but fun for me. I pulled out two of my favorite pairs; my western cowboy boots and the fancy red shoes I bought in Italy which are a contrast to each other. I named this piece "Both Sides of Me". The exhibit runs March 6-28 with the opening reception on Saturday, March 6, 5-7 p.m. The gallery is located at 138 Bellevue Avenue in Newport, RI.

Colored Pencil Class tackles Cradled Gessoboard!

For the last two classes, my colored pencil students have worked on the 6x6"(2"deep) cradled gessoboard in which I prepared the surface with Colourfix primer. The subject is shells and everyone picked a few depending on how complex they wanted their composition to be. Each person set up the small still life in front of them and drew from that. We also used odorless mineral spirits and small brushes to dissolve the pencil in some areas, particularly the background in order to achieve an even tone. Notice all the fun stuff we've got lying around ... pencils in jars, pencil sharpeners, coffee, lamps! The tables fill up in no time! Also notice how everyone is concentrating so hard on their work, what you aren't seeing in this picture is what a fun and lively group they are!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Watercolor this time

I usually stay with one piece of artwork at a time but lately I've been jumping all over the place and I feel comfortable doing it. I haven't done watercolors in years and this piece is 14 years in the making. I took this photo of 2 of my boys and 2 of my neighbor's boys running on the beach on an unseasonably warm afternoon in May. It took me 13 years to start it and 6 months to finish and a great memory now on paper, as these boys are all grown up now. The painting is done on a full sheet of watercolor paper and the hardest part was working from a small old photo in which the color was starting to disintegrate. I struggled with the photo and ended up working a lot from my imagination. I had fun with it once I got over the fear of working on a large sheet in a medium I wasn't familiar with any longer. (The paper is a little bit wavy which is causing the spots in the sky.)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Moving along with the tulips

My photo is a little fuzzy and a bit lighter than the original drawing. I'm just about finished with the cloth and going to start the background. I'm going to leave the background simple so as not to detract from the tulips. I started on the left side with a warm gray but don't think its what I'm looking for so I'll keep experimenting. The UArt paper is very textured and can be difficult to lay down a nice layer of pencil. I'm finishing with the Polychromos, the leads are harder and fill in the grooves nicely.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Pears & Cherry Peppers

I've had this drawing sitting on my drawing table and I keep coming back to it to change and add. The background was too dark so I layered some lighter colors, although I'll be darned if I can remember exactly which ones because I kept picking up different colors. I know I used Prismacolor Clay Rose, Mineral Orange and Henna for sure. I also added more darker values to the sides of the pears because I thought they looked a little flat. I was intrigued by the blue/purple shadows which seemed to take on a life of their own. All in all, its a fun little drawing.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Portsmouth Arts Guild Classes

On Saturday I attended Portsmouth Arts Guild "Art-O-Rama" held at the Portsmouth Library in which all the instructors of the upcoming classes set up a little demo so that people could see their work in progress and (hopefully) sign up for classes. All of the instructors have artwork hanging in the library gallery during the month of February. In the picture, you can't see the still life that I am working from so I've included my drawing in progress in this blog entry. Its a little still life of three pears and two hot peppers on green Canson Mi Tientes paper. I'm working on the background right now which looks a little bluer in the scanned image. I started with Indigo and Black Grape Prismacolor pencils and solvent. Now I'm adding Henna, Tuscan Red and Chestnut (began on the left) to give the background a warm tone. I like the green paper showing through the fruit.

Portsmouth Arts Guild is offering many great art classes and workshops in many mediums and they are all reasonably priced. Check out the Spring Class list on their website - www.portsmouthartsguild.org - and if you are local and interested in art, sign up for one!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Working on the cloth

The vases are sitting on burgundy velvet, such a rich colored cloth. I'm hoping to portray its richness. The funny looking spots on the right corners are the clips holding the drawing on the board.