Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Making Tracks at the Train Yard

These handsome fellows were found loafing around at the Snoqualmie Train Depot. It's a historic spot so I suppose they've earned their retirement. I do appreciate a model that holds still. I tried very hard to keep my colors brighter than normal since I lean towards paintings that are a tad too grayed out. Here is a trick for keeping paintings bright; don't use very much white. White cools down anything it's added to and drains your painting of vibrancy. Making sure the perspective was correct was another challenge. Here's a trick that can help though; using your brush as a straight edge, hold it up "next to" the angle you're trying to get. I say "next to" because you could be standing twenty feet away. Keep holding that angle and bring your arm slowly down to your painting and put the straight edge on the canvas. That's the same angle you need to paint now! Make tracks to share the tricks of your trade. Everyone benefits.

Find my work at and now on Face Book

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Beaver Lake and the Story of Light

Outside, sunshine, birds chirping...for some painters, there is nothing better than being outdoors with brush and canvas. Or is there? What about the ever changing light? Artists are always fussing about light- which direction it’s from, is it warm or cool, what kind of shadows come from this kind of light? Herein lays many potential problems; if you haven't analyzed the light, your picture can look pretty weird! You should know where the sun is and where it's heading, shadows are darkest and clearest nearest its source, and that morning sun is cooler than late afternoon sun. But it gets way more interesting than that. Honestly, there are whole, detailed books written on the subject of light and how to paint it! Fortunately most people don’t need to know any of this but you do need to know it if you're a representational painter. Enjoy the summer, get outside and paint knowing the light.

To the new galleries I have added to my blog, please know that you were added because I adore your gallery and would like to introduce you to my art. If you prefer not to get my blog, just send me an email.


Saturday, July 17, 2010

Art in the Garden

Art in the Garden; many gardeners describe laying out plants in a garden like an artist placing colors on a palette.

To others, Art in the Garden means finding interesting outdoor art like ceramic garden flowers, sculptures or tinkling wind chimes that add another layer of interest to the foliage and color.

My version of Art in the Garden means going to a fabulous place like Bassetti's Crooked Arbor Gardens in Woodinville Washington, setting up my paintbox and spending the day with other artists trying to capture the cacophony of colors into a cohesive composition. I hardly know a daisy from a Daphne but that doesn’t stop me creating my own garden out of creamy oil paints and brushes- a garden to last the ages. Summer may fly by at an unbearable speed but painters aim to stop time for a moment, to imprint their impressions onto canvas and to place that impression in your midst through all the seasons.