This is my first attempt at painting from Google's "street view" maps. I am submitting it to Bill Guffy's Virtual Paintout. The first day of each month, a new location is posted and artists are able to 'stroll' through the streets of the chosen city from home and choose a scene to paint. This painting took me out of my comfort level for a few reasons. This felt almost like painting a plein air painting which I don't really do. It's hard for me to edit things out of a scene. I also have never painted a figure or animal so I'm afraid these look pretty amateurish. I tried to make the man hunched over against the cold with his hands in the pockets of his jacket. I also tried to capture the feeling of a cold, dreary day by using muted colors, definitely not my favorite palette of colors. And finally, I painted this in oils, a medium I'm not completely familiar with yet. I think it's good to push out of our comfort level and try new things so even though I wouldn't count this as one of my best paintings, I am happy that I did it and plan to participate in the virtual paintout challenge each month.
I started this painting about 2 years ago and I'm not sure why I didn't finish it before now. This is 150# Arches cold press paper with a piece of rice paper attached over the top by using a 50/50 mixture of matt medium and water. It gives such a great texture and surface on which to work. The matt medium seals the paper and the paint sits on the surface a bit which makes it easy to move the paint around but unlike some other surfaces where the paint doesn't get absorbed, it is easy to build up dark values with this surface.
This koi design may look familiar to you if you've looked at my silk painting catagory on my website. I used the same drawing for both mediums. My plan was to paint the same design in each medium in which I work but I think this is as far as it's going to go. On to new things!
The National Watercolor Society exhibit is open now. I said I would post it when it opened and I forgot. It opened last weekend and will be open through Dec. 10th. As usual, it is an inspiring show and if you are in the southern California area, I highly recommend seeing it.
Finally, the last painting in my Paradise Lost series is finished. This painting is a re-do of the very first painting that started this series in 1995. I wanted to show how the beautiful orange groves have become 'groves' of houses. I painted smog on this one as I did in Paradise Lost III. I can't believe I finally finished what I started 14 years ago. I'm sure my friends and family that think I never finish anything are shocked! After the first 3, I admit I started losing steam, especially since the last 2 paintings in the series used ideas that were not new and fresh, but I knew that if I took a break to paint other subjects, I would probably never finish the last two paintings for this series. I must say that I'm really tired of painting oranges, leaves and houses. The original painting that I painted in 1995 is shown below.
Paradise Lost V
Image Size 22" x 30"
This is the fourth painting in the Paradise Lost series and is a re-do of one of the paintings that I did in 1995 when I first thought of this idea. The original painting is shown below. My idea was to show how Orange County's original crop and namesake has changed and now we have a new 'crop'. In the painting that shows the oranges growing on the tree, I used pure, clean colors to show nature's beauty and in the painting with the houses 'growing' I used a more muddied palette to give a sense of a less clean, more man-made environment.
I work in just about every art medium I can get my hands on with my favorites being watercolor and silk painting. I love to experiment with different mediums and styles of painting. I try to paint every day and will post my paintings here as I finish them. I really appreciate any comments you may have on the paintings. You can sign up below to receive the postings automatically by e-mail. If you would like to see my artwork divided by medium, visit my website. If you would like information on purchasing one of my paintings, please send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org