Sunday, October 24, 2010

Teapot and Pomegranate

This painting is from my weekly class.  The instructor had me make a value study of the set up, and then in the following class, I painted over the value study.  I put a lot more time into this painting than I do when I'm painting at home.  I like the way the teapot turned out, and my little leaf!  Not too happy with the pomegranate, though.  I couldn't get its little snout right.  Next time.  

This may be my last painting that I post this week.  I'm off to Houston to help out my daughter again.  Her husband is out of town and she's a working mom.  I help get the kids off to school and help with meals and homework.  I'm taking my painting gear, and I'll retrieve my camera, left on my last trip.  I just don't know how to upload photos on her computer.   Have a good week! 

Friday, October 22, 2010

Glass bottles

In this study, I wanted to try to capture the translucence of glass.  When I finished, I decided that the thing I like best is the shadow of the glass carafe.  Isn't that funny how we like one little part of a painting?

If you want to see glass beautifully done, check out Carrie Waller's award-winning work here  or here:   Her watercolor work is breathtaking.  

7" X 9" oil on canvas panel

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Little Brown Jug

This is a little jug that belongs to one of my daughters. When I saw it, I wanted to paint it.  I am using a borrowed camera, and I don't think the colors are as bright as they should be.  But at least I can post now.

I want to thank everyone for all the encouragement they give.  When I started posting, I never knew about the wonderful fellowship of artists who blog.  I love it!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

I'm back, but I left my camera in Houston!

Everyone has been so kind.   My grandson is well and back in school.  I've been painting, but I left my camera there.  I haven't figured out how to use my daughter's camera here.  So I will keep visiting your blogs and commenting, but I don't know when I'll be able to post paintings for a while yet.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

No new posts this week

I'm in Houston helping out with a sick little boy.  My daughter called me for help yesterday.  Her husband is out of town, she works and has missed two days of work staying home with her son.  He's been running a fever for five days, and has had two trips to the doctor.  It's a virus and just has to run its course.  So I'm here for the rest of the week without acesss to my own computer.  I did bring my paints, but don't know if I'll have time for painting.

Some good news:  the long-awaited construction on our new house began this week. The bulldozers are in there getting the lot levelled and ready to pour the foundation.  Yea!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Mango In and Mango Out

I guess I'm destined to be known as The-Lady-Who-Paints-Fruit.  I can't seem to paint anything else and have it come out looking right.

I worked and worked on that bowl.  There was lovely reflected light from the mango inside the bowl, but I just couldn't capture it.  And I'm not mentioning my ellipse.  Oh, I guess I just did.  

I envy those people who can paint something in an hour and then post it!

7" X 9 " oil on canvas panel

Thursday, October 7, 2010

What color is an eggplant?

These are Japanese eggplants I got at the local supermarket.  In Texas the premier supermarket is H.E.B.  They are local, and they have the freshest, most beautiful produce!

I set up these on a white ground, and I put a piece of yellow paper on the left, out of the painting.  The yellow reflected in the shadow of the eggplants.  There were lots of purples and magentas visible, but I was surprised to see turquoise in one of the planes of the top one.

I'm not pleased with the stems and leaves.  I still haven't figured out how to paint a leaf.  But I kinda like the eggplants.

My blogging friend Jean Townsend posted a link today to Jeff Mahoney's website.  He wrote about the doubts and frustrations that plague painters.  It is so disappointing to want to paint something and then not have it come out right.  His post is so right on and worth reading!  I want to thank Jean for finding it and pointing it out!

8" X 10" oil on canvas panel

Monday, October 4, 2010

Comfort apples

Painting a portrait put me out of my comfort level.  So today I went back to apples!  I love the shapes and smells and colors of them.  Painting this little study put me in a good mood.

7" X 9" oil on canvas panel

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Portrait workshop with William Kalwick

Yesterday I attended a workshop in portrait painting at the Coppini Institute.   This is my study of the model.  At the end of the day, I was feeling discouraged, but later I looked at it and I can see some positive things.  I drew the sketch with everything in the right place.   And you can tell it's a girl!  I can "see" things I couldn't see before--like the reflected light under her chin and under her ear.   I'm not happy with the eyes, but  I know that I can learn to do better.  So all in all it was a good day.

Bill is a wonderful teacher.  He broke up portrait painting into manageable steps,  "just like painting an apple", he said.   That made me happy!

He did a thirty minute demo for us.  First he did a sketch using burn sienna and viridian green.

Then he laid in the darkest darks in the painting.  This helps you establish a value scale.

He lays in what he calls the "local color",  the main colors of the skin.  He stressed adding shapes, not painting a face.

Then he adds the lights of the skin and connects the values together with darker lights.   This is his painting when he was about half way through.

This was his finished study.  It was amazing that he could do this in thirty minutes!

He broke up our classes into twenty minutes intervals to give the model a break.  We all worked on the same task together.  For example, the first 20 minutes he had us make our sketches.  That was all we were supposed to work on.   He would go around and offer suggestions and corrections to each individual student.   The next session, we worked on laying in the darks, and so on.  That way we all stayed more or less together, and he could discuss what we were supposed to be doing, how to do it, etc.
I really liked his teaching method, and I think the whole class agreed.

His website is