a goat among the grapes

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.

the goat in the vineyard
a Fainting Goat

Italian Cypresses

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…!

Painting the painters!

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 here and now

Guard at the gate at Golden Gate Fields. I liked the simplicity of this scene, and simplified it even further. Midday. This is a lonely job these days. Many people pass on the new Bay Trail section which follows the shoreline just a few feet away, but few go up the hill towards the race track, mostly trainers, vets, other support people. We chatted for a short time, his wife is an artist, but paints only horses, and more horses. I think he hopes she’ll branch out and try a new subject some time. I may work on this more, add some detail, or maybe not, it is ok with me.

Guard at the gate of Golden Gate Fields.
Guard at the gate.

July 30faces30days-completed

July #30faces30days from Sktchy was an awesome way to learn more about procreate and drawing the human face. To see them “closer up” check out my sketching instagram @2minuteeggs. Sktchy has a session each month, with great teachers. I loved all the different styles, some specializing in cross-hatching, some gouache, cartoon or comic style, or a restricted color palette. It was sometimes hard to get started on the day’s drawing, and it was interrupted by five days out of town, but I got through it!

collage of 29 of 30 sketches.

30 faces closer to 500!

day 9. two tiny

Since these are so tiny, two will count as one. The little bowls were made by my step-mother. She delighted in making tiny vases, small enough for a single flower, tiny cups and saucers for her granddaughters, and these little bowls which were surprisingly useful. She mixed her own glazes, and liked the homemade look. Cherry tomatoes.

painting of handmade bowl 1
tiny pot with tomatoes
painting of handmade bowl 2
tiny bowl flipped to show the painted pattern

face 52 the Scotsman

While painting by the River Tweed with some friends last fall, which seems 3 decades ago, a fisherman kindly lent us a couple of chairs so we wouldn’t have to sit on the ground. He said he had been fishing in that spot for 40 years or so.

Scots fisherman
Scots fisherman

day 4. old school still life

at least, it seems a bit old-school to me! This was from a decade ago at least, but I could take another dive into still-life. There are many subjects which could be fun and informative to paint. This particular piece was done in pastels, maybe worth a revisit as well!

Eggplant, nectarines, garlic pastel painting.
Eggplant and companions

day 3. painting in the fog

a few years ago my plein air group and I took a trip up to the Guerneville area. We rented a cabin on the Russian River and spent three days eating, painting, socializing and generally having a blast. One of the days, we headed out to Goat Rock, along the coast. As we got closer to the coast, the fog became thicker and thicker, until by the time we arrived at our destination, it was a thick blanket you could scarcely see through. Some of us continued south until we could find some clearer skies, which we did, but I returned to Goat Rock determined to paint that almost-island. Still socked-in, but I set up my gear and focused on a nearby bramble tangle. It turned out to be an abstract, and super fun.

Goat Rock painting
Not Goat Rock!
Goat Rock painting detail
detail-so fun to push the paint around