Sunday, June 13, 2010

"A Greater Presence"

"A Greater Presence"
20x30 oil on linen
I've been working on a project the past couple of months for a fine arts festival called White Pine Festival. Check out their site to see what they are all about, incredible!
Late winter there was a call to visual artists to submit samples of their work for the opportunity to be selected as one of the painters to create a painting inspired by a piece of poetry. I, along with 8 other painters were selected for this incredible experience. The idea was to see what imagery we would come up with inspired by the poetry. (i'll post the poetry later, I don't have it with me at the moment) "A Greater Presence" is my painting inspired by this piece. It's been finished for a while but I have not been able to share it until now.
The opening for this show "Painters Paint Poetry" is this Thursday, June 17 at Alesci Gallery on Main Street in Stillwater from 6-9. All are welcome to see this variety of incredible works by 9 different painters. I'll post more on the process once the show is going. Along with the paintings we've all written our experience and inspiration for the paintings.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

3 Day Plein Air Workshop!

Yesterday was the kick off to my 3 day plein air workshop that I teach here on the St Croix River. Below are pictures of my hardy painting gang! The weather has been a bit rainy but they are troopers and haven't heard any complaints! I will tell you the COLOR has been incredibly rich with the overcast sky and wet greens! No complaints here! A far cry from where a was one week ago today in Sarasota Florida for my show at M Gallery where it was in the high 90s and humidity of 90%. This is refreshing! One more day to go, what a great group of painters!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Peonies From Mary's Garden

"Peonies From Mary's Garden"
20x16 Oil On Linen
Painted last week in the studio and just now got a good photograph of this piece!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Things are bloomin' around here!

Last week was a full week painting inside and out!

Monday was the last day of my teaching "Mondays In May" in the studio. I really enjoyed teaching in the studio this past month, it was really casual and amazingly productive. It's incredibly inspiring to be surrounded by painters who are so eager to paint and learn! Thanks painters for sharing a part of your journey with me!
Monday evening was HOT! My daughter Paige and I grabbed a burger and a coke at a local place in town, packed our paints and headed to the beaver dam to paint the hot sun going down. There is nothing like ending a summer day painting your favorite place with one of your favorite people in the world! Paige was a trooper and brought a good book and a set of Windsor Newton Watercolors. A muskrat and a beaver popped up to say hello to her. :) (surprised her a bit. . .)

8x10 oil on linen
"Just Before Sundown"

Good friends, Martin and Richard own the Squire House Gardens in Afton MN. I spent a full day painting one of the many varieties of Martin's tenderly cared for peonies. What an inspiring place to be! (in so many levels)

The end of the week I ended up in the studio beaten up a bit by the heat at this point. Like I've already said, things are really blooming like crazy around here and early this year. I'm sure most people are not sitting around stressing about this fact like I am, but boy AM I! I have such an indescribable desire and hunger to paint everything as it blooms that I drive myself half crazy. They just don't last long enough but I think that's part of the drive for me, to get it so I have it captured from life on canvas, and it is not up to me when they decide to present themselves. If I didn't work and respond from life this would not be a problem but I do and it's what I think keeps my mind and paint fresh. When I'm painting from life it's almost like I'm connected with what I am painting, it's truth in response.

Thursday morning I had a dear friend drop by the studio with this LOVELY bunch of White Peonies! (hers were open before mine and I was concerned with my show in FLA this week that I would be gone when mine opened) They were so lush and fragrant sweet smelling that I simply stuck them in one of my favorite vases and started to paint. Not a simple painting to have done, but after two days of solid painting here we are! I will say, I've painted a lot of flowers from life and I do believe that white peonies are the most difficult ones to paint. It is a focus thing! Keeping lights and darks together and cools and warms is your saving grace here.

This bunch of peonies was like painting a melting ice cream cone! They were going quickly!
"Peonies From Mary's Garden"
20x16 oil on linen

I haven't had a chance to take a good photo yet but you get the idea. . . the color is a bit off. . . .I'll re shoot it after my show in Florida next week.