Monday, May 27, 2013

Alla Prima- what's that?

Daisy Duke, oil on 9x11" panel, $490

I'm working on lots of smaller paintings now for my final surge of work for the Fountainhead Gallery show in August. It's such a joy to work smaller after doing larger pieces that take three weeks to complete. These little ones are much quicker and are a lot more fun to work on. I do them Alla Prima which is a style of painting where you work wet-into-wet so you have to complete it in one session. Wet-into-wet means the paint is always wet so if you want to mix the paint, you push harder with your brush to dig into the layer below or if you want the paint to lie on top of that last stroke, you place it lightly with the end of the brush. When done right, those top strokes can be exciting and fresh.

Working towards a show is a good way to keep you in focus. I tend to bounce around with subject matter but a show means staying cohesive and working within the confines of a theme. On the other hand, the show is up for barely a month and it takes a whole year for me to completel a dozen works that are show quality so it's a big investment.

Fountainhead Gallery is a really lovely gallery up on Queen Anne hill in Seattle. Please put August 10th on your calendar for the opening night. If you would like an invitation in your email in-box, go to my website's guest book and sign in. Meanwhile, as they say in the business, keep your brush wet!


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Be in the Know!

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We took the nicest walk on Mother's Day to a nature preserve on Fir Island. The water is Sammish Bay. Hmmm...I wonder if that's where the oysters I ate that day came from? 
No doubt some paintings will be born from this glorious day.
 When you choose a subject matter that is meaningful to you, your paintings come out singing.  
I have a big show coming up in August at Fountainhead Gallery in Seattle, WA and I still need some small works for the show. Can hardly wait to get in the studio!
Check out my website.....I've been working on it all day adjusting the site for PayPal.
Anyone care to try the Buy Now button?

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Take a Peep at changing Horses

Take a Peep at Changing Horses

Oh, were life a straight line with few curves. You would just slip into a ready-made road and stay on it. Perhaps a bit boring but certainly easier.

I have a show coming up in two months at the beautiful Fountainhead Gallery in Queen Anne in Seattle (opens August 10, 2013) and I still need to create work for a grouping of smaller pieces. I took a workshop last weekend and felt a real ah-ha moment when I realized that the labored, three week paintings I've been painting the last couple of years are now making me dread going into my studio. Pay attention, self! In the workshop, we painted alla prima which means creating an oil painting all in one day in a single painting session. This is the style that drew me, weak at the knees, into the world of oil painting. You've heard that old saying,  you can't change horses mid-stream....that's where I'm at right now. I really have to stay in this current style for this show.

Now I'm not so dumb that I can't figure out how to incorporate these new ideas into the old style and that's what I'll do. And most artists change styles many times in their lifetime. Think of Picasso's blue period. He had years of pursuing one way of putting paint on a canvas and then moved into an entirely new style. Not that I'm Picasso, mind you.

What we all need to do when the road starts curving and takes us by surprise is set groaning aside, clarify what's happening,  say some positive affirmations to oneself, and get moving in that new direction.

So down to the studio with positive thoughts. Hope your day is full of positive thoughts too. Be kind to yourself. And please write August 10th on your calendar so you can come and peep at my new paintings along with the Peeps in the photo!