Finding simple things to do in these days of staying at home a lot. Drawing and painting has been my #1 go-to, since it’s easily done within your home with just a minimum of space. “Simple” may not be an accurate description, maybe “elemental” is more like it. It feels direct, and the outcome is entirely up to you.
A few months ago, I participated in 30faces30days from sktchy art school. One day we were presented with the face of a baby—a difficult subject! You might think it would be easy, but to keep the lines brief and accurate, to show the sweetness is very difficult, at least for me. “There is no growth without pain” they say; this was pretty tolerable in the pain department, though hopefully enough to learn something.
I got through that one, and it inspired me to try some in oil paint as well.
Ha! Shadows can be so much fun – something not really there which is visible! In this case, the Carquinez Bridge provided the structure to obstruct the sun. This bridge is composed of an old trestle-ish looking bridge for going North, and the new graceful Southward bridge. I might add a few more pencil lines.
This vineyard painting was beginning in an abstract way, but I didn’t know where to go next. I thought of completing it as a traditional plein air painting, but I really liked the graphic stripes that were there — so I split the difference and added a goat painted in a loose way, with some unusual colors.
Maybe someday, someone will find a cache of baby teeth and wonder what it was all about. This little guy lost two in two days — I think he’s happy the tooth fairy will come but even more than that, it’s just fun to wiggle them out!
This road wound its way through vineyards, fields, farmlands to arrive to a hunting lodge in the Tuscany hills, of Italy. From my first trip to Italy to paint for a week at an old farm turned agriturismo. It was the most delightful trip and great introduction to Italy’s lovely northern countryside – and food! I was never an Italian food aficionado until visiting and tasting the real thing. This painting has gone through some changes – as the years pass I see things I want to change. This latest iteration is much brighter than earlier ones. You sometimes lose something you like, but often gain something else. The future may hold more versions…!
Vineyards frequently plant these rows of poplars as a windbreak. These are young trees, but will eventually grow to very tall and can reach to over 100’. I love the way the wind ruffles the leaves and light catches the occasional leaf and these glow brightly. A celebration by nature.
Although I really enjoy doing Plein air painting with my painting buddies, sometimes I just want to paint them instead the landscape. Trees, hills and sky can be wonderful, but it’s nice to change it up occasionally.
If you take a moment to think about it, you could paint anything outside and it would be “plein air” — you could paint an abstract! A couple of weekends ago, I decided to just give it a try. This was not done all at once, I added the artist watching who arrived later, so it can’t be called “alla prima”. Why is it that we use terms in other languages to describe some of these things? Maybe it’s because we feel like it gives it more gravitas or legitimacy as art or something.
The de Young Open is now — open! This well-designed show is a delight, and will be up until January 3, 2021.
There are so many (over 800) wonderful works of art from talented and creative local artists, you really should go see it if you are in the San Francisco Bay area. See the current exhibition list. The artist opening day was fun, but busy and I plan to return to see more. My artwork is in Gallery 8. Many of the artworks are for sale (mine is not). Support artists in the time of COVID-19!!
Ruth Bader Ginsburg — a tireless and courageous advocate for women, “minorities”, workers; she was careful in crafting her arguments, she was strong, but civilized in the way she wrote her opinions and dissents, and she brought about justice in many important cases. This is my tribute to her.