Click pictures to enlarge

Monday, November 15, 2010

Star Wars Visions

The 'Star Wars Visions' Book is out!  It has a bunch of great paintings in it,  and I feel lucky to have been part of it.   It's on my coffee table. I will enjoy looking at all the work, and say to friends... I know him, her, and him...  All this talent...

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

New Class Demos

Just photographed these head studies.  Some of my students have been waiting for me to post recent class demos. The first two are from session one.  The last is not a demo, its of my son Lucas who gave me some time in exchange for a new (toy) 'Beyblade' $7.95.   Totally worth it, till he gets wise.  For now, I'm working the scam.  
  For those who don't take my class, these demos aren't finished paintings, they are an example of process.  I spend a lot of time talking and answering questions, and get very little time to concentrate on painting.  I post them in the spirit that they are learning tools. They are usually Life size and painted alla prima. But the second image (which is particularly rough) was a demo of  repainting right on top of dry paint in a direct way.


Thursday, September 2, 2010

Some new sketches

Here are some more of the Italy paintings.  There are still more from the Marsiliana trip which I will post when I photograph them. The bottom Three are not from the trip.

Corsini Chapel at Marsiliana

Room behind Chapel

Fishing Boats at Porto Ercole

View of farm land from the wall at the main house. In the distance is Mount Argentario.

Wall on the west side of the complex

Wash drying in the nearby Hamlet
In the courtyard

Under dense Wisteria

Passageway in Porto Ercole

Also in the courtyard

Acadia Park, Maine

Head study

Acadia Park, Maine

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Workshop Ends

Just a quick note to say Marsiliana was a great success, and we all worked hard. The students did some fine work.  I'm on a borrowed computer so I can't post more now.  The photo's were taken in the field so I will fix and repost when I get home. More paintings when I get home also.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Marsiliana Workshop

I recently tried to link to info on Andrea J Smith's website having to do with the Marsiliana Workshop.  I had some trouble getting there.  So here's a document with all the details Andrea sent me. The Dollar is doing much better against the Euro right now, which is a real help.  Also, there are still spaces available so no worries about deadlines for signing up. -

Monday, April 26, 2010

Limited Palette Study

Lots going on at Home but things are getting back to normal.   Here's a limited palette sketch, for those people asking about it. Just under 3 hours work using Ivory Black, Burnt sienna (I like the more transparent ones), Yellow Ochre, and just a touch of Permanent Red.  It's a great way to get an immediate effect.  To me, they always feel like they are complete statements, even when they are considerably open in finish.  Keep in mind this is not something to do in class as it doesn't require the accuracy in color reading or the special handling required when painting in full and opaque color.  In class, accuracy to the model is what we strive for.  When you can paint the models as you see them, you will also be able to do limited palette. But the reverse is not true.  This painting is not the best example of the amazing range of limited palette painting.  And there are many changes that can be made to get different effects.  'Oil Painting Techniques And Materials' by Harold Speed has a great step by step using limited palette and 'painting from the life'.   Many painters used (and still use) limited  palette to great effect.  Anders Zorn is the best painterly example.  

Friday, February 5, 2010

Painting a fleeting expression from life

I want to make a self portrait that has the spontaneity of a momentary act, like a hearty laugh or caught mid-expression.  So I did this quick study from life to see what could be done.  It has some drawing issues that can be fixed just by slowing down, but I find the biggest problem is that a laugh devolves within seconds into a pained expression. It has no half life that even remotely expresses the excitement of a true laugh.  Maybe the trick is to have Monty Python or Something About Mary on in the background to create an atmosphere that promotes easy smiles and unexpected guffaws.  I was listening to NPR (a talk about partisan politics)  on the radio and the smiles weren't flowing.  I will try it and post the results. 

Me, life size study, approx. 12"x16"

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

I missed class Monday night

To my students, I'm sorry I missed class on Monday.  My nephew was married in Florida over the weekend and the flight we booked conflicted with the class.  By the time I realized the mistake Friday night, it was hundreds of dollars to change it.  I will let you know when the make-up day will be. Thanks.

In the meantime, here is a painting of my back deck, 12"x16".  My studio has a rectangular main space with a triangular space attached to it.  That triangle space comes into the picture from the left. It then flattens out (where the wall sculpture is) and ends with a natural stone wall.  The design is 1970s passive solar. The dark rectangle on left side is a sliding glass door which lets sun light in all day to heat up the concrete floor.  At night the floor releases the heat back into the room.  Of course the first thing I did when I moved in was to completely block it off.  My neighbors must have thought I was cutting up bodies.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Landscape Painting On My Mind

Warwick Barn, 12"x 16"

It's time to get back outside.  Yes it is cold out but not nearly as cold as it should be.   I haven't been out at all this winter.  I'm going stir crazy.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Class Demo,"Richard" Monday 1/25/10

As promised here is last nights demo.  The photo has a bit to much contrast and has some glare issues, but it will do for now.  I'll try to take a better one.

If you remember toward the end of the demo(I should have stopped 5 minutes sooner) I got a little heavy handed with my darks, it really hurts to see them today.  The painting didn't need them.  Sometimes you need to have a friend close by who will grab your brushes and run away.  I may try to fix some things, if I do I'll post it.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Sketch of Phoebe

Just wanted to post a recent sketch, to keep my New Years resolution to post regularly.

  While waiting for me to finish up for the day, my daughter often falls asleep on the couch in my studio. Sometimes I'm caught up in what I'm doing,  but often I do it on purpose so I can paint her.  There's a bunch of these floating around the studio. When I get a chance to photograph them I'll add  them to this post. About 8 x 12"

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Painting In Marsiliana, Italy

My good friend Andrea J. Smith From Atelier Canova in Rome, is putting together a landscape painting workshop for this June.  She is an excellent draftsperson and painter.  You can see more at and at Atelier Canova.  Andrea has a knack for finding truly picturesque places to stay and paint. This year she found a castle in Marsiliana that Annigoni frequented.  She also asked me if I would guest teach the workshop. She and I would split the teaching schedule in half, that is one day I teach mornings and Andrea teaches afternoons, And then the next day I get the afternoon.  Its not completely worked out yet but that gives you an idea.  Andrea speaks fluent Italian which will come in handy and I can look clueless in any language, including English if necessary.  I will post more info as I get it but here are some pictures, Click to enlarge


Monday, January 4, 2010

An Experiment

The other day my microwave oven died. No tears! It lived a long life and served me well.  I don't mourn its death, I celebrate its life.  In that spirit I got out my home autopsy kit and ripped it open.  Inside was this beautiful blue fan.  In perfect working order and in no way responsible for his/her death.  So I thought I should paint it with one of its favorites things, a yellow onion.  These 2 paintings are not the final paintings, they are explorations as to how I may go forward.

Since they are of the same subject, it seemed a great opportunity to experiment with my approach.  This is not a perfect control, one has a more scratchy quality (more pronounced in reproduction), while the other has impasto due to a repurposed panel. Also, the compositions vary.  But I wonder if even with these differences there is something people respond to.

Do you prefer one over the other for some reason not expressed above?  Let me know what you think.

Click on the images to make them bigger.