Friday, December 17, 2010


It's hard to find time to get to paint during the rush of the holidays!  Yesterday, I spent six hours at my studio going through and organizing photos for future paintings.  I ought to be off to a good start of averaging one painting a week in 2011! 

Here are a couple of quotes to start off the new year:
"Success doesn't come with painting one picture.  It is building step by step against great odds." Georgia O'Keefe
It's how you find, every day, joy in expressing what you think and feel, as you try to create that most magical of things - a work of art.
"The true use of art is, first, to cultivate the artist's own spiritual nature - No artist need fear that his work will not find sympathy if only he works earnestly and lovingly."  George Inness (1825-1894)

Here's one of my pastels that was sold to a very special friend.

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas to all!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Barn for my dad

My dad just called to say he had received his Christmas painting and that he loves it. The pastel barn turned out  nicely thanks to Summer's (Frame Warehouse) help with matting and framing (not shown).

Friday, December 3, 2010

Loving the palette knife

This week I finished a palette-knife exercise.  Although it is not an original work (a semi-copy from a magazine photo of a beach-house living room),  I learned a lot and had fun playing with the colors and paint application.

Quotes to Consider

Took some time to read through some of my ever-accumulating art magazines and found some great quotes. 

The artist as a creator - rather than an imitator of nature.   (Henry Keeler)

We draw to discover, to gain understanding, to develop compassion.  We can't transcribe if we haven't seen.  Look while you have the opportunity.  This is a great moment that will never be repeated.  (Ellen Eagle discusses portraiture in The Pastel Journal)

Stay away from negative people.  Being an artist is challenging enough; surround yourself with those who support your choice.  (Sam Goodsell in The Pastel Journal)

Each time I set out to paint a portrait, I'm reminded of my own humanity.  The human experience is full of great triumph, disappointment, love, and loss.  For me, no other subject possesses a greater amount of complexity than the figure.  (Mario Robinson in The Pastel Journal)  

Monday, November 22, 2010

Studio Visitors

Had a great day at the studio today!  Ten friends stopped by to take advantage of the open studio - not too bad since I only e-mailed about 30 people!  My goal was to visit with friends, to let them see where I'm spending all my time, and to show my latest works!   (The fact that I sold a painting - which was NOT my goal - was a little added benefit.)  I'll be there again tomorrow from 2:00 - 5:00!  SO, come by if you get a chance.   

This picture is one of my first paintings.  It's of my dad at a family cemetery.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Open Studio

Next Monday and Tuesday, I will be painting at my studio all or most of the day.  Lots of friends have wanted to see the studio - so, this is their chance.  Friends and  friends of friends are invited to come and visit between 2:00 and 5:00 PM both days.  It's not a party or open house, just a time to see the studio and some of my latest works!   E-mail or comment if you need directions.  

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Reworking old paintings

Had a breakthrough of sorts this week.  I have a couple of old, HORRIBLE paintings that have been sitting around the studio making me crazy.  After my palette knife workshop, I decided to rework them.  It was really fun to keep the basic block-ins, but change the colors and values.  I wish I had saved the first attempts so I could do a comparison.  Anyway, here they are!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Rembrandt Palette

Last week, I also attended a workshop with James Sulkowski, a portrait artist from Canonsburg, PA.  The all-day portrait class focused on using a limited palette known as the Rembrandt Palette - white, yellow ochre, vermilion (or cad read light) and black.  I had to leave early - so, didn't get to totally "finish."  However, I think my painting does at least look like a person and actually resembles the model.    Not too bad since I've only been attempting portraits for less than a year.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Art activities last week

Attended a fabulous workshop with local artist Angela Nesbit - great artist and super teacher!  First, we did lots of color mixing - made some beautiful grays using ultramarine blue, burnt sienna, and titanium white. Then she demoed - first a block-in and then the use of the palette knife. The pears and flowers are my paintings from the two days!

New Blogger

I attended a workshop on selling your art at last week's Carolina Art Weekend in Raleigh.  The teachers strongly suggested that we start an art blog!  So, HERE IT IS!  I'll be posting my latest successes, mistakes, and attempts on my journey as a new artist.  I hope that friends, new and old, will share my progress.  Artist friends, I hope you'll chime in on things that work - and don't work - for you!