Friday, September 25, 2009

A Bad Day

No, this isnt a new direction or my latest masterpiece. This is an example of what I do when inevitably a painting goes bad. Not all artists agree on what to do in this situation. Some people I know would attempt to "power through" a bad first day. On occasion I do this and sometimes it works. It can also mean a lot of time wasted away picking away at little problems. Nowadays, more often if things don't come together on the first day, the painting gets "the treatment."

Here's yesterdays bad start, on the ground, having just been doused in turpentine and wiped clean. A little extra color tint has been applied on top. I'll give this one a little rest, and start anew.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Law Office

Oil on Canvas 24" x 16"
This painting is available. Contact me.

This picture began as a nocturne–I went out under the full moon with completely different plans, and ended up in front of some law offices downtown.

Some otherwise nondescript buildings are transformed as they recede into the night. There's an air of mystery surrounding them: only the remaining lights tell us there is a building there at all. I've found this effect very flattering in all of the cities I've been to. On a sunny day I would have passed these buildings by.

As an experimental picture, I'm encouraged by the results. I played around with the placement of the lights to make it most effective, and learned a lot about glazing to get the color of the lights against the dark. I'm definitely going to revisit this type of picture in the future.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Fallen Tree
Oil on Canvas 10" x 12"
This painting is available. Contact me.

It's often difficult to explain how I choose my subjects. Sometimes, all of the work has been done for me and all I have to do is capture it with some feeling. Other times only a particular object, a clump of trees, a building, a sky on a particular day will stand out, the rest I have to improvise.
I was riding my bike through the woods and this particular spot leapt out at me. This oil study is to prepare for a much larger forest painting.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Storm on James
Oil on Canvas 14" x 10"
This painting is available. Contact me.

This picture is one of my first storm paintings. Ever since I was a kid, I've been fascinated by the weather. I still love to watch thunderstorms build, from a safe distance of course! Painting them from life in real time is a considerable challenge. This summer storm was fast approaching from the south, I was able to catch it from the other side of the James River. About an hour later, all hell broke loose.