Okay. I admit I'm on a cow fixation. Happens every winter. With any luck we'll get snow and I'll have my artist friend David Oleski video me doing some plein air cow stuff. Below is another studio piece and then....well I describe...
So this is how I start most paintings. Put in the darkest value first. It's amazing how quickly an image appears when you have a limited value range. Note there is no sketch. The painting is the sketch...
Now I introduce the next value range paying attention to temperature. Just because it's dark doesn't mean it's cool!
At this point I'm satisfied with the piece. Now for the background. Unlike landscape where it is important to establish a key these "portraits" are flexible. I go with a warm selection.
3 new pieces that I've stopped working on. The cityscapes take a lot of energy out of me. When I paint I psychologically put myself in the environment that I am painting. I feel like I'm back in that location all the while I'm painting it. Immense energy goes into a single stroke. I think this is critical when creating loose atmospheric paintings.
So I've been quite prolific as of late. When I do these type paintings they are completely out of my imagination. I purposely tried to incorporate some landscape but to no avail. These things just come through me. I try to fight them yet they appear. At the risk of sounding like a lunatic I'm just documenting my work as a whole. When I work from observation I stick to what I see albeit a bit embellished. When working from the imagination I suppose anything goes but for me not anything goes. Certain things appear. At least there is a part of me that demands satisfaction and these figurative works bring that satisfaction somewhat. That being said...... I'm never quite satisfied.....
Two new pieces fresh off the easel. The top one being a hotel window view in Florida and the bottom being a scene from the road in the midwest. It was just after the storm passed and left the parking area a bit flooded. I might change the cloud formation so it's not top dead center at the peak but need to live with it for awhile.
Sandy the hurricane is about to unleash it's fury on the mid atlantic and northeast so power outages are likely even here in south central Pennsylvania. What better time to paint ominous skies? As if I need an excuse.
So after the Chincoteague experience I'm back to some studio work. This scene is from the hotel we stayed at this summer in Chicago. I'm fighting the idea of building a painting and embracing the idea of destroying the concept of building a painting. So I did my usual approach of brushing in from dark to light over a tinted panel. Got completely frustrated and took my very large knife and carved away a huge amount of paint. Finally some life appeared. This was the direction my latest work was going at the end of summer and I suspect it will continue. However, I know better than to predict my future work. Every day is a new day and intuition is the decider in such endeavors.
I'm back from a 3 day painting excursion to Chincoteague VA. and these are the plein air pieces from the trip. I'm recently more drawn to atmosphere and shape and seem to pick very minimal subjects. The common thing at Chincoteague is the unique clusters of trees and their unique relation from trunk to top. Whenever I attempt those paintings I get sucked back into drawing with paint instead of painting with paint. So this trip I avoided the subject and went more for atmosphere than graphic illustration.
These are two new pieces I've managed to complete in the final weeks of the show season. Just 2 more shows to go! Armonk, NY this weekend and I finish with St James court in Louisville KY the following weekend. Then the serious painting begins......
So during a recent stint to the midwest I was able to spend a week in Chicago. I walked the streets and enjoyed the city at a nice slow place. I took a bunch of photos for material and enjoyed great food and beverage. The area is just west of miracle mile. I will be showing both of these pieces at the Longs Park show this weekend in Lancater Pa. They will be a bit wet!
Yes I'm still alive! It's been a busy summer. Finally have a weekend off from shows and went down to the river for some plein air work. Will do studio work tomorrow and see what happens before the Longs park show next week. Notice how I pay little attention to reality of lines. I'm more about atmosphere. This piece wasn't quite done when I shot it with my iphone.
So I finally got outside for some plein air work. Steve Wetzel was kind enough to invite me to sit in on one of his class sessions along the river. It was a great place to paint considering the river breeze kept things comfortable and light was good. I'm a bit rusty to say the least with plein air work but it was definitely a good time. It's off to the Amagansett show in the Hamptons this week but should get a studio piece done before that.
Show season is underway but thankfully I have no show this weekend. I tackled another cityscape at dusk. I keep getting looser and looser. Just seeing shapes appear as dabs of color is quite fulfilling at the moment. My inner voices seem happy with the current approach. It's interesting that I have an old piece very similar to this one in style that I see everyday. I didn't feel too strongly about before but after being on the road and seeing it with fresh eyes I think it works. Guess it's going on the road.......
I am an oil painter. I paint mostly from direct observation both indoors and out. I studied at the Art Students League Manhattan under Daniel Dickerson. In my work I strive to maintain a balance between abstraction and representation all the while keeping atmosphere most important. View my show schedule to see where I'll be exhibiting.