Slack Tide

A modern day tender on a morning slack tide.  Years ago when I started paying attention to and painting these casual little work boats they were made of wood. Mostly plywood things. Some were more elaborate but most were simple. The served one purpose. Get the lobsterman to his boat then hang about until it master needs to get back to dry land. This is a modern plastic tender. Inexpensive purely functional. Even still in the right light a charming object.  

Slack Tide. Oil on linen 9 x 12. 2017

The cookie jar

This is a painting of the Cookie Jar. The cookie jar that sat on the kitchen counter while I was growing up. We didn't have a lot but we did have cookies. My mother was a fabulous baker. The cookie jar was always full. Oatmeal, molasses , wheaties, chocolate chip, sugar, all kinds of wonderful made from scratch cookies.I can see that little knotty pine kitchen with the latch cabinets and covered cake dish. Where there was always a freshly made cake.

Recently I was cleaning out a shed and found it full of a clan of mice living in the at cookie jar. Eggh! I 'washed it out good', popped insome freshly cut Peonies and painted it on a 12 x 9 rough canvas.

A finished sketch really. Just enough to write the story of Ma's cookie jar.

Ma's Cookie Jar with Peonies 12 x 9 oil on canvas 2017

Ma's Cookie Jar with Peonies 12 x 9 oil on canvas 2017

Painting effort on the previous non-pose

This is three weeks of painting effort on the last pose. The pose lasts 1 more week but I 'll be in the city. I'll work on this in the studio over the next week. It is intentionally not a polished realism. It is an exercise in neutrality even exaggeratedly so. When I painted with watercolors I thought of neutrality as earth tone thing. Making grays from colors mixed with various earth toned pigments. These neutrals are created with compliments. The effect is a lot like my acrylics from the 70s, transparent layers that created neutrals achieved unconsciously. 

Land-escapes. The discovery of light. Or You're never too old...

I have never been a big landscape guy. I love landscapes. They've just always seemed so complicated. All those damn trees. How do you paint those damn trees. Recently a friend of mine convinced me to join her in a workshop with landscape artist Peter Fiore. It was an renewing experience. There was a lot of information passed around. Much extremely useful. But non more than the statement 'You are painting the light.' I have heard this many times since art school. Many of the my photographers friends talked about it. Painters  told me that they owned their success to the moment that they discovered light. I accepted all of this as gospel and continued with my humorous illustration. Line and wash drawings where tone and value were at play but not necessarily light.

For years my painting were representations of accidental light. Random. Good luck. Bad luck. My encounters with light were totally accidental without the understanding that I was in control of my light. Not in the sense that I could move the sun about in the sky. But I could be in the right place at the right time by design.  

At the same time I was preparing for Peters workshop there were a couple of news bits floating around about apps to help photographers 'chase the light'. One is an add on to an APP called The Photographers Ephemeris  or TPE. Which offers as an optional 'add in' called Skyfire. These tools are supposed to help with finding light events related to sunrise, sunset, weather conditions and track the path of the sun. After the workshop I bought the TPE app and SkyFire add in. Heres some resulting work based of chase light based on information vs luck.

Completed study

Work in progress    Locust Lawns 22 x 8 oil on Raphael Linen 

This was in the morning, not dawn but early light. I was bight enough to casta shadow but defuse. A very hilly river valley.

My Font Yard  14 x 7 oil on canvas

This is the first successful attempt at achieving light. When I say successful I mean that I understand the value structure. I may not have expressed it right but now I'm understanding it.

Study oil on paper

Needless to say that this 'new' awareness is helping with other challenging lighting situations.

Looking to the Catskill  Photograph 

Another result of chasing light with previous warning

An acorn squash

Last of this season smalls... I think. This is painted with a new paint from Mark Carder. Geneva Paints. I enjoy these little things. So small that its hard to detail and show volume. It has been a great exercise. I'll get back to them soon enough but I have some largish painting that I've been itching to do for a while. I'm going to get back into watercolors and starting a Outdoor Painting group for the spring.

unnamed 6 x 6 oil on panel

Out of My Gourd

I can't seem to stop this kitchen art thing. This little squash came out of our garden this year. All lumpy and bumpy. This is still officially a work in progress. I'll wait a few days before I call it finished. The old box it's sitting on has become my favorite platform. This single overhead light set up is really revealing in it's simplicity. 

Out of My Gourd  8 x 6 oil on panel

I am lowering the prices of many of my paintings!

Many of the prices on my recent oil and acrylic paintings are being lowered by 1/2  or more. It's time to make room for more and different pieces. Many of the changes are done and by Friday all will be online listed under Available paintings. Four new paintings will be added into the pile. I hope this moves you to consider purchasing one. If the price still seems too high make an reasonable offer. 

Lighthouse at the End of the World   24 x 18 oil on canvas 2015

This and several others will be listed soon. They are being varnished and will be ready to ship next week.