Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Spring Pop Ups

 11x14 acrylic on canvas board

Once in a while I do a painting that is unplanned. This started as a blank canvas only - no sketches, no preliminary planning, no "I have an idea" moments. Just a blank canvas, a few brushes & a few tubes of paint! I let the painting come out on it's own. It's fun to do once in while & nice to get out of the mind-crunching planning that I often have with a new painting.

Where I am living now, spring happens sloooowly and in stages. Right now there is still snow in various areas of the yard. And even though the temperatures during the day get above freezing, the snow that has been plowed or mounded during the winter are reluctant to give up. Gradually we see more and more of the ground.

Unfortunately, before we can really experience spring, we experience "mud season." This is when the ground is still frozen & firm except for the top inch or so. Step carefully for your shoe/boot will be engulfed. And you'll hear that telltale sound of suction -- I once had a sneaker pulled off by it! 

But as soft as the ground is, the bulbs wake up. And the crocus's are the first to show themselves. The pop-up in various places in the yard & I will be planting more of these lovelies in the fall. 

Friday, March 19, 2021

Cat's Eagle


My cousin Cat graciously gave permission to paint from one of her photographs. She captured a series of this eagle who was fishing for a meal. I wanted to capture the bird especially those wings, and the water splash. Quite a challenge but I was feeling brave! 

This is acrylic on a 12x24 stretched canvas. The background water was done with a series of washes to create a feeling of depth. But also to soften all edges so as not to compete with the bird & splash. 

I'm pretty happy with this one and wanted to post it now - while I'm still painting the edges of the stretched canvas.

Thursday, March 11, 2021

The Challenge


Maybe I should name this "put the brush down & stop it!" This has been, indeed, a challenge! Taking a deep breath right about now.....

My hats of to floral painters! So much to deal with - no black, very limited white, shapes, shadows, highlights, lost edges, hard edges. I've changed the value of just about every color in this (except the greens of the background). And I had a constant struggle with impression vs realism. 

In the end, I am somewhat happy with this. I love the large rose. My last struggle was with the surrounding roses that are in various stages of blooming. 

I can't guarantee that I am not going to see something in a few days that I just have to tweak. But for now I am calling it done. I have 2 more empty stretched canvas's that are the same size as this (8x10 & 2-1/4 deep). My original plan was to do a 3 painting rose series..... not sure now. Maybe.....

Monday, March 8, 2021

Spring Magnets

While I sit between seasons for new inspiration (happens pretty much every year) I'm trying to not be art-idle. I've had these small (3x3 inch) canvas panels for some time. Always thought to make some hand painted magnets. I have some winter ones that are a bit larger, but I thought these smaller ones would work well.

We recently moved from the NJ home we lived in for years (decades!) to our upstate NY vacation home; it is now our full-time residence. I have always been a gardener & bird-feeder, so intend to do the same in NY. I do know that I have crossed into a different zone for gardening & some of my past attempts have failed after a winter. I will try again! 

What surprised me though was the different birds that come to the feeder. Where before in NJ there were most the small house sparrows, some blue jays and a cardinal pair - now I am seeing Nuthatches, Chickadees & Tufted Titmouse. Also Juneco's. There are Blue Jays occasionally as crows the size of Buick sedans. So far no Cardinals and only 1 lone Mourning Dove who must have lost it's mate (sad). 

I decided to paint these little guys at my feeder, as well as the spring flowers I hope to plant & see. These are all 3x3 inch, hand painted acrylics.


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