Sunday, May 31, 2009
This one came easily, but lacks something, whereas the others came with a bit more pain and frustration. I am satisfied with it, but I think the background color is what is throwing me. Warm on warm, I should have played the warm cool game. I do like the composition and the overall look of the piece. I guess a couple of days off really does make a difference!
Thursday, May 28, 2009
This is the piece that started it all for me. In another lifetime, I started painting in the attic of my old house. It was hot as hell up there and I could only paint at night. I started by copying my favorite artists. I did several Picasso pieces and a Georgia O'Keefe. I thought I had it figured out... I could paint anything! I was a fool, of course.
When the Heritage Auction rolled around, I donated a copy of any famous painting. Val Cranford bought it and requested that I painted her favorite Pissaro pieces. No problem, I am on it. Well, it was much harder than I thought. I struggled with technique, color, etc. My first attempts were passably decent, but that wasn't good enough. I kept this piece and in every subsiquent studio I have ever worked in, it hung on the wall as a reminder that you never know anything you think you know. I painted sporadically throughout the years and got real serious about it in 2002. I sold pieces word of mouth until late 2006 when I sold everything I had painted at the Artwalk in Newnan and also picked up my first gallery and my first solo show in late 2007. And now, here I am...
After reading everything I could find about the Impressionists and studying books by Edgar Payne, Robert Henri, and John Carlson as well as a Millie Gosch workshop, I have been avidly painting plein air and from reference photos. I took my nemesis off the wall and banged it out this morning. It is a great feeling, and I know Val will be glad to get her book and he painting!
For the record. I work much more timely that a 10 year average turn around!
I was on my way home yesterday and I passed some of my painter friends on the side of the road, Dana Johnson and Elsa Sibley. They were painting this beautiful old farmhouse on the way to Luthersville. It was great to see them and talk about getting together to paint. It also got my juices flowing to do some small landscapes. I couldn't get out yesterday because it was dark by the time I settled in, but I had taken some pictures on my way home that I could work on. Dana and Elsa are amazing plein air painters, I love their work and I am excited about being able to paint with them later this summer when I don't have to work everyday! I have a link to Dana's blog on my blog and Elsa's work can be seen at Flint Gallery and Huff Harrington Gallery. You can see Dana's work at Flint Gallery and The Dogwood Gallery.
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
This is the latest in the larger than life fruit series. I am pretty sure I have become obsessed with painting things that are disected or cut in half. At least I have an idea of where I may be taking this in the future... I sold the study of this, so i tried to match the colors the best I could from what I remember, but with a different color. I had been using cad yellow pale, for this i wanted to use the warmer cad yellow hue, which turned a little bit more fleshy colored than I had anticipated. I really like the composition and the over the top color...
Monday, May 25, 2009
This latest piece turned out better than I had hope, once again, at the canvas I felt like I had no idea what I was doing. My drawing looked awful, my colors seemed off, everything was wrong. Once again I had to will myself to finish which is sometimes what it takes. It is so easy to knock yourself down so early in the process when all that matters is what it looks like when the "process" is over. This piece and it's colors are once again based on a smaller daily painting I did earlier in the year.
Saturday, May 23, 2009
This is the second in my large scale fruit series. I did paint this one from life, which made it much easier. It was a bit difficult to draw so much larger than what I saw in life, but the colors that you can see when drawing from life are what really made the difference for me. This color combination is based on an earlier piece based on grapefruit as well. I really enjoy this mint green with the corals of the grapefruit.
These pieces have left the studio and made a new home at the Dogwood Gallery in Tyrone, GA. Greg plans on rehanging the gallery and it has been a while since he was on the receiving end of new work from me. These pieces are very new, but not the newest I have in the arsenal, they are definitely dry enough for transport. If you have yet to see these in person, go check them out! They will be in the gallery until my next solo show sometime in early fall.
Thursday, May 21, 2009
I have started a new series of paintings based on my smaller daily work. This piece is the first installment of the initial 6 pieces. I hope to have these up at the Flint Gallery in Newnan by the beginning of summer.
I love the smaller pieces I have done as daily paintings, but I LOVE small subjects done larger than life. I am looking at this painting as I type, and I am going to pick it to pieces.
The composition is OK, nothing earth shattering here. What I love about the smaller pieces is the way the break down when I use the palette knife, and I just ain't gettin' it here. I am using the same knife on this 24"x24" that I use on 8"x8" and I am getting more of a pixelated look than a breakdown or explosion of the form. At this point, I don't know if I like it or not. This piece was done from a smaller study and not from life, and I felt myself wishing I had the subject in front of me, I may try that in my next piece as well as a latger knife, however, I want these pieces be similar, I don't know how much straying I will be doing!
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Jules has the uncanny ability to go out in the yard gather a few things, throw them in a jar... and they are beautiful. She could arrange burned twigs, pine straw and poison ivy and make it look beautiful. Granted, these are roses in a jar, they were eye catchingly and beautifully simple. I meant to paint them yesterday, but I didn't get to them until this afternoon. The petals had started to drop, and of course, that made me mad... until I realized that it made for a much more interesting piece. I was afraid I had lost this one as well, all the values were very light, and for the first time in a long while, I actually felt strange and uneasy in front of the easel. It all worked out, like it usually does, and I was very happy with the outcome.
Thursday, May 14, 2009
I took this picture earlier this year when Jules and I stopped on one of our many journeys to Paris. We stopped at the local Starbucks, and there it was. The lighting was perfect, which hardly every happens when you stumble upon a piece like this. Usually I have to study it for a day to see when the sun hits it the way I like. Anyway, the larger pieces take a while to finish, and these last 2 have killed me. This is "that time of year" at school, the mad dash to the end... then, VACATION! Or as I call it, time to work. I get to wake up everyday and paint! I plan on participating in a series of workshops with Millie Gosch and a small group, and I hope I can coerce Martin to come out and paint as well. Any of the rest of you plein air peeps out there who want to come Gay way, let me know!
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
This is a cell phone image of the painting I just finished, I wanted to get it up on the blog before I could get it out for a picture in the sunlight in case I get hit by a car tomorrow. I really feel like I am on to something at this point and that all of the hard work, expense, blood, sweat, tears and tantrums have paid off. I have plans for doing some large scale paintings that break my genre, but these car paintings keep me up at night and coming back to the easel every day.
I hoped this would be the last piece of the week because it is so big, but I just want to do more, more, more... We stopped at a body shop in Carrollton a few weeks ago on our way back home from Birmingham because they had a fully renovated '76 Landcruiser. Little did I know that they had this little gem back there. I love old Caddys, especially ones with fins. What a great time in American auto design. If they could design cars like that that really hit it home like that, they wouldn't be where they are now. I got at least 2 more shots of this car I will be painting in the near future.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
When I was in Savannah for the MUSE conference this winter, I took a picture of the salt and pepper shakers in my favorite breakfast place, Clary's. Clary's is a greasy spoon type place of Jones Street in downtown. It used to be a local haunt until the book and movie, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil made it famous. A decade and a half later, tourists are still abundant. I love the decor of the place right down to the soda fountain, counter, silverware, straw dispenser, cups, mugs and salt and pepper shakers. Classic restaurant stuff. It is the kind of place that doesn't refrigerate their ketchup and they still use Heinz glass bottles. I guess it reminds me of the old, old Sprayberry's... when you used to come in the original door on the corner. This is the first piece I have done on museum wrap, which has a 2.75" profile instead of the 1.25" profile of gallery wrap.
I don't do pieces more than once, that would be very un-artful... however, in this case, I created a sister piece to an earlier post called Gift of Love. You may need to look at the previous post to get the back story on this piece. Long story short, Mollie, on of my students, wanted to give her mother a painting based on the painting I did for my mother, based on the flowers they brought her. Her mother, Kay, and my mother are kindred spirits. I woke this Mother's Day at 7:00am, and couldn't get back to sleep. All I could think about was doing this painting for Dr. Kay. I love to paint in the morning, it's like meditation. The house was quiet, I didn't even make coffee. I literally rolled out of bed and into the studio. I put on a little music and poured it out. I was very pleased with the outcome and mom was so happy thet she and Kay would have such a special Mother's day gift. The Crosby's have been very good to us, and they have always supportd me in my artistic endeavors. This is the 2nd Boyd, Jr piece they have.
Saturday, May 9, 2009
I have been sitting on this picture for a while. It was a great, torn up, rusty dump truck. The reference was taken on a cloudy day, so the end result is kind of foggy. next time I am up near Union Point, it better be sunny. I still have more photos of that truck I would like to paint. I enjoyed working large again, I hope to amass enough work for a show by the end of the summer or sooner. Daily painting is great, but bigger is better! I love the colors of this piece, and I really think you can smell the rust on the truck and see the oxidized paint.
Julie's mom asked her if I still had the last pair of avocados I had painted on red, and of course I had sold them during the fair. Last night I sat down and used the same color scheme for this painting. I love the contrast of the red and green with a dash of coral and yellow-green. I could paint avocados all day. I need to do some large scale. Maybe this summer. Happy Mother's Day!
Thursday, May 7, 2009
This Portabello mushroom has ruled my life since Monday. This series makes 4 pieces all together. I plan on reworking the one from from Monday with the blue background. I moved my still life table in order to create a different light direction, which changed my idea about this series. I see tham as 4 pieces that, put together, make a whole. The first was on a blue background and was laying on it's side, and it just doesn't work with the other 3. I still used my burnt umber and yellow oxide instead of mixing a brown. I actually hope to do a larger series of abstract mushroom in non realistic colors. These turned out well and I am very happy with them.
I love commission pieces, usually. When the client knows exactly what they want and it requires no creative effort, except for me "doing my thing," are the best. You always run across the client who has no idea what they want and you have to do all the work. This client wanted her husbands logo painted like the Sprayberry's painting I did. She saw it at the fair and knew it was just what she needed for his birthday. She had the card on her and was ready to go! I really enjoyed doing this piece, although I would rather it have been a painting of a sign or business rather than just the logo. Either way, I think it is a great gift idea and I hope that this will catch on with other businesses who would like for me to do the same for them!
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
I found this awesome portobello at the store Monday while recovering from the Cotton Pickin' Fair. I loved the colors and the shapes, but it proved a difficult subject. I think the earth tones threw me for a loop. I used burnt umber instead of mixing a brown with green and red, I think that made everything look of in the one with the blue background. It is also quite the deaprture from my usual colorist apIt was a good night, 2 pieces. It has me curious enough to try some more with fauvist color choices.
I completed a comissioned piece tonight (too dark for a picture) and I hope to get back to the mushroom again and see what I can do...
Monday, May 4, 2009
I participated in the Cotton Pickin' Fair in Gay, GA where I live. I knew at the very least, if I didn't sell anything, I could at least get a piece or 2 done. Happily, I was too busy talking with people coming in to look at my stuff. I will write more about the fair in my next post. I took a bunch of pictures of the booth and the work each morning before the onslaught of the day!
I was hapy with both of the pieces. I signed the apple upside down for some reason. I like the piece, but the colors cam out strange and the shadow isn't quite the way I want, but what can I expect after not painting for 5 days. This piece is also covered with dust and pollen from the fair, I love it!
I am pleased with this one, more than the other. However, as usual, the drawing leaves a bit to be desired. I am really out of practices. If drawing is weak, so will be the painting. Luckily, this piece has great colors and a sparkle, not to mention a couple of bugs and some dirt.