An Online Artist's Coop for Artists who Paint on Location
ALSO: for high quality giclee prints
AND: Now you can purchase certain pieces of my work on Art Tiles
WATERCOLORS ON LOCATION
For more than 50 years I have been calling myself an artist. It began on my tenth Christmas in 1957 when my father gave me an oil paint set. I used up some of the colors and all of the canvas boards and needed more supplies. So I began going door to door to sell my paintings for $25 dollars around the block where I lived in Shark River Hills, New Jersey. Someone took pity on me and bought my first painting and that’s really all I have wanted to do ever since. I first used watercolor only to make color notations on pencil sketches for oils. I realized that the pencil line inhibited the brush stroke, so gradually I eliminated all pencil drawing and began blocking in large areas of color, isolating the white space, often becoming the painting’s focal point.
As a young man, and being inspired by Winslow Homer, one of my first watercolor trips was to his home state of Maine. I remember waiting for over an hour for my paper to dry as I tried to paint on the foggy coastline. Thank goodness Fredrick Remington was also an influence to me inspiring my interest in western landscape and the desert.
This is a fast medium, lending itself to painting on location and demanding a rapid approach. There’s nothing like being there, in the moment, capturing the feel of the location. It also helps give the paintings a sense of place that is hard to achieve when working from photographs because the limited tonal range of a photograph cannot match what the human eye can adjust to and see.
I love the desert for plein air painting because one does not have to wait long for the water to dry on the paper allowing you to proceed to the next step to achieve a hard edge. In fact a wet into wet technique is a real challenge there. Also, battling time and the elements of wind and sand and having a sense of urgency with constantly changing cloud patterns on the ground offer a real challenge to the artist.
In 1994 I moved from California to Atlanta, Georgia and taught at Bauder College until 2006. I enjoyed painting at our local Sope Creek during the Autumn months and realized how much I missed the change of seasons. I was featured at the Booth Western Art Museum in Cartersville, GA, in spring of 2007 with an exhibit titled “Four Corners”, some 29 watercolors, most were painted on location during a painting trip to the area in2003 and 2006. I still go to Arizona and New Mexico whenever I can since it is only about 6 hours longer to drive there than it did when I lived on the San Francisco Peninsula.
Ever since my show in the Spring of 2007 at the Booth Museum, I have been very busy with other shows around the Atlanta area and helping start an artist's coop in Acworth, GA called Gallery 4463 where we have monthly shows. My most recent show was a 61 piece one-man retrospective of my 40 years of plein air watercolors and pastels, done in all corners of the country. This show was titled "Coast to Coast" and had work from a 1969 watercolor done in Washington State, to one in Maine in 1972, to Southern California and Arizona and Florida and St. Croix.
This slide show is on fineartamerica.com another website that sells high quality giclee prints
I guess one could consider working in pastels for 9 or 10 months, a "dry spell" of sorts. They certainly are dry. But if you have been paying any attention, I have been doing daily work, sometimes 4 or 5 pieces per day. These can mount up quickly. I stopped working about a month or so ago. Around when the leaves began to bud out and changed the look of the landscape. Too much green for me.
I now have triple what I need to have my show in September. Suzie is going crazy thinking she…Continue
Posted on May 21, 2013 at 9:12pm
Today we had our annual "Taste of Acworth" and Gallery 4463 had it's own booth where I set up to do portraits. Here are a few that I did. It was good to do this today since next Saturday I am scheduled to do the same thing at the "Flavors of Fall Festival" at the Smith Gilbert Gardens on October 20th. This helps build my confidence. I have never been someone who could do the "complimentry" portrait, overlooking the flaws and lines in the face, making the subject look younger and overall…Continue
Posted on October 13, 2012 at 10:30pm
Last weekend we had an incredible blooming in my azalea garden when I did some watercolors that were so colorful I simply was overwhelmed with the bright colors I was using. I invited a few painters over to share the scene but I did not get any company until a week later, yesterday, when Shane McDonald, who won 1st place in the MCMA plein air event,…Continue
Posted on April 8, 2012 at 12:44pm — 10 Comments
My dad again... Make do with what you've got. How often do I do that? Here is my most recent example.
I am out doing my weekly watercolor while Suzie is inside the supermarket shopping, when I realize I left all of my paper at home. So rather than be board for the hours or so, I looked around for some alternative. I have used the backs of our gallery showcards that I usually have a short stack of in the truck, for drawing cars in the lot. These I have already posted. But I had not…Continue
Posted on March 12, 2012 at 5:59pm — 4 Comments
We all welcome inspiration no matter what form it takes or from where it comes. It does not have to be related to our narrow focus here of only "plein air painting". I don't know anyone who is strictly a plein air painter and does not work at all in the studio. The opposite is certainly true enough that there are many studio artists who do not paint on location. And If I may add, most of the time you can tell the difference, because of the learning experience plein air painting has on your…Continue
Posted on November 4, 2011 at 3:05pm — 1 Comment