Sunday, August 24, 2008

Saturday Morning, Presque Isle (oil on canvas, 2008)

(Private Collection)
This, along with the pastel below, were done as part of the "Paint Presque Isle" fund raiser event sponsored by the Aroostook Partners for the Arts yesterday. Artists were invited to paint within the confines of a specific area in downtown Presque Isle and the work was auctioned later in the evening to raise money for educational arts events for school children. I ended up spending a lot more time on this (almost five hours) than I originally thought that I would. I am sure that my love of Edward Hopper had something to do with my selecting this particular view, but I also have always enjoyed the receding perspective of railroad tracks, which I don't get to see very often near where I live.

Bench Swing (pastel, 2008)

(Private Collection)
I did this yesterday as part of the "Paint Presque Isle" fund raiser event sponsored by Aroostook Partners in the Arts. I had worked all morning and into the afternoon on an oil painting (see above) but still had a couple of hours left before the work had to be turned in for the auction that was to take place that evening. I had thought this view of the bridge was nice when I was scoping out locations early in the morning but it seemed that it would be better once the sun was a lot further to the west. I had originally intended to work from a spot more to the right, so the swing was not in view, but another artist had set up in that location so I was forced to find a new one, which turned out for the better, I think. The new location had the added advantage of allowing me to work in the shade of a big tree; a much needed relief after baking in the sun for five hours while I worked on the oil painting.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Framingham Road (pastel, 2008)

I saw this view this afternoon while out running and thought it would make a nice composition, especially the contrast between the green potato plants and the yellow wheat field. I drove out to the location later, around 5:00, intending to make a small painting of it. After setting up my easel and painting table and getting all of my supplies out, I realized that I had forgotten to bring my jar of solvent to clean my brushes. Luckily, I had packed a drawing board with a sheet of red paper taped to it, and my pastels were still in the car from last night, so I made this drawing instead. Last Saturday I gave a class on painting outdoors and I advised my students to make up a checklist of everything that they need to bring and to go over the list before they head out. Perhaps I should heed my own advice....

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Big Pink Cloud (pastel, 2008)

(Private Collection)
I did this earlier this evening after dinner. I had to work fairly quickly as the sun was setting to my right. As often happens, I had intended to do a drawing of something else, in this case a view looking northwest, but when I started to unload my gear from the car, I looked up to the south and saw this big pinkish-orange cloud formation and decided to do it instead. A man drove by in a pickup truck and stopped for a few minutes to watch me work and provide a little encouragement. It was nearly dark when I made the finishing touches to the foreground.

Wheat Field (pastel, 2008)

I gave a pastel workshop yesterday and did this as a demo during the class. I am always afraid of falling on my face when I do demonstrations. Whenever I start a picture, I never have a clear idea of exactly where it's going to go anyway and it's not uncommon for for a fair amount of them to end up disastrous. Having to think about what I'm doing and explain it to people while I'm working makes things even more difficult. This one didn't turn out too bad, though.

Sheep Farm, Summer (oil on canvas, 2008)

(Private Collection)
This was done a couple of weeks ago. I wanted to do a painting based on the image in the pastel (see below), but not directly from the pastel. I went back to the location with a big canvas and started the painting, making some changes to the composition, most notably the addition of a shadow in the foreground from a group of trees that was behind me to the right. I estimate that I spent about 40 hours on this over the course of four days.

Fitzpatrick Barns (oil on canvas, 2008)

I am trying to be diligent about posting things in a timely manner, but not doing very well.Painting of the Fitzpatrick barns on Foxcroft Road done about three weeks ago. I went back to the location and started the painting, changing the composition from the pastel, and then finished it in the studio.