Thursday, March 28, 2013

The "Chrome Monster" in progress.

I just thought I'd share a picture of my latest piece in-progress.  I'm jokingly calling it the "Chrome Monster" because it is so absolutely loaded with shiny, reflective chrome, which is a challenge for me to paint realistically.  I think the real name of the piece will be "When Cars Were Cool" or something like that.

Anyway, all I've done so far is outline everything, paint some lines to indicate main value areas, and start blocking in some of the darkest value areas.  I went a little furter than that with the hub cap though, and blocked in all of the main value areas except for the brightest highlights, which I will save for last.

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A Great Painting Tutorial!

Well, in preparation for painting the "Chrome Monster" I mentioned in my last post, I started looking for instructional videos for painting metal objects.  I found this great one, and noted that the YouTube channel has lots of other interesting looking tutorials as well.

Embedding has been disabled on this almost hour long free art lesson, but I am posting it here anyway so that anyone who wishes may go watch it on YouTube:

So, click here to watch it!

And Click Here to Check Out More on the Channel!

Thank you for reading! I welcome your suggestions on how to make this blog more interesting to you! Photography Prints

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

I Really Should Wake Up before Uploading

Last night, right before I crawled into bed exhausted, I realized that the paintings that I uploaded of Biz Biz were really not finished.  I didn't paint in her whiskers!  You can still see the pencil marks I made to guide the placement of the whiskers, but no white whiskers!  So, now I have to finish the whiskers, retake the picture of the painting, and upload the new version to Fine Art America. Then I'll be able to work a little more on my new painting, which will be the front end of a 1956 Chevy Bel Air.
The Bel Air painting will be my first attempt at making something look like shiny metal... since its my first time doing that, you'd think I'd pick something easy like a small metal bell, or utensil or something.... no... not me... naturally I picked a car loaded with chrome!  Oh well, hopefully I'll pull it off, otherwise I'll just waste a canvas!

Thank you for reading! I welcome your suggestions on how to make this blog more interesting to you! Photography Prints

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Working, working, working....

So, I've been continuing to work on my art pieces.  I finished an abstract yesterday VERY late at night, and I finished another pet portrait today.

The pet portrait was of a cat named Biz Biz, I got the photo, which was taken from a cell phone, so it wasn't the highest quality picture.  I made due though, I started with this:

Well, right away I decided to crop the image, and focus more on Biz Biz's face.  Here is the cropped picture:

Then to help me see the subtle nuances of the colors, I cranked up the saturation on the photo:

Then I was ready to sketch and paint, and the result was this:

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The title doesn't show all the way on that preview, it is "Biz Biz Another Green Eyed Tiger".

As I mentioned before, I also completed an abstract last night.  I had been looking at lots of Kandinksy's work earlier in the day, because of seeing a friend's work that reminded me of Kandinsky.  So I combined the bright colors that I had been seeing in Kandinsky's work, with the the type of abstract pattern designs I use in a lot of my abstracts.  The result was "Tranquility", named such because that is how I felt while creating it... tranquil.
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Thank you for reading! I welcome your suggestions on how to make this blog more interesting to you! Photography Prints

I Haven't Vanished from Planet Earth!

Just wanted to drop in quickly and let anyone who happens to read this now and again know that I am still around.  I haven't posted for a while, but I've been busy creating.  Since my last post I've painted two portraits of pets and started one more, plus completed an abstract work, varnished several paintings, ruined one canvas in a painting that turned out to be a "flop" in my opinion... though I may salvage the canvas by Gesso-ing over the disaster.  Also, with the help of one of my best friends I've built three displays for my paintings to hang on during the upcoming artwalk, and have started painting those displays.

That, plus every day life, and I just haven't gotten to the blog for a few days.

So here is my abstract:

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And here is one of my pet portraits:

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Very soon I hope to post photos of the displays my friend and I built.  (Okay, seriously, he did most of the building while I did really useful things like hold the drill and misplace tools! Though I DID drill some holes to start screws, and I also did hold some wood still while he sawed.  I also painted the surfaces of the displays.)

 Thank you for reading! I welcome your suggestions on how to make this blog more interesting to you! Photography Prints

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Homeschool Co-op Parent Room Sketches

Today was homeschool co-op for my kids, and in my down time before my first TA assignment, and in my down time after my last Teaching assignment, I sketched things I saw around me. A pedestal in the chapel area, a fire sprinkler, my pencil sharpener, and other items.  Later at home I continued sketching.  A lamp, my shoe, my hand...

Anyway, I've been wanting to draw from life more, and today I got in lots of sketches, all from real objects in front of me. Some of the objects had very straight lines, and I could have benefited from a straightedge or ruler, but all were just done free hand.
Here are today's sketches:

Thank you for reading! I welcome your suggestions on how to make this blog more interesting to you! Photography Prints

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

My Freedom Series

I'm sure if you've read the past several posts, you've noticed a lot of bald eagles in my sketchbook.  That is because I am working on a series of paintings I am calling my "Freedom Series".  I'm not sure how many I will paint in the series, but the first two are finished.

The first one I call Freedom's Hope, and its a bald eagle, symbol of Freedom for so many, looking up to the maker, continuing to hope in good times and in trials, as Americans have done since the birth of our nation.

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And the next one I call "Freedom's Pride", it depicts a A bald Eagle, symbol of American freedom and pride, perched on a branch overlooking part of the beautiful Puget Sound.

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While I haven't decided yet how many will be in this series, I do know that I'll do a few more, however, before I do I'm going to do a few pet portraits, in preparation for an upcoming art walk where I plan to advertise that service.
Thank you for reading! I welcome your suggestions on how to make this blog more interesting to you! Photography Prints

Friday, March 8, 2013

New (old) Additions!

I've been combing through my jpeg files, looking for digital versions of paintings and photographs that are fine-art-print-worthy but haven't yet been posted to my website.  I have been a photographer for a long time, so its going to take a while to go through everything.  Today I added four new images three were photographs I took some time ago, and one was jpeg of one of my paintings that I just didn't get around to posting yet.
Now I want everyone who reads this to know that while I do try to sell my art, by no means do I want this blog to be just an extension of my selling website.  Rather, I am hoping to make it a more general art blog, with suggestions, perhaps tutorials, pictures of the process of creating, and thoughts in general.
I hope this blog will be of interest to people who like art, even if they don't plan to purchase any.
So here the newest additions to the website, enjoy browsing even if you don't wish to purchase!  And share your favorite images with your friends!

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Thank you for reading! I welcome your suggestions on how to make this blog more interesting to you! Photography Prints

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

A Sell!

As a still emerging artist, each and every sell is exciting to me.  Well, yesterday I sold one of my original paintings!  It was "Green Eyed Tiger", you can see it below.  I will still be showing this work at my art walk exhibit, but it will be marked "sold" and will be given to the purchaser right after.  Prints of course are still available for purchase!

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Sunday, March 3, 2013

In the Spotlight, and some more Eagle Studies

Several days ago I signed up for a virtual interview with the website "Artpromotivate" hoping to be featured in their "Artist Spotlight" column.  Now, this isn't really a competition sort of thing, if you follow the rules as far answering their questions, and giving them all the information they ask for, the feature you, so I wasn't surprised to be featured, I made sure to follow all of their guidelines, every single one.  What did surprise me was how quickly they featured me.  They say there is often a wait of several weeks, but I was featured only days after submitting my interview.  Maybe it was a slow month for them as far as submissions, or maybe they liked my work or my answers.  Either way, it is good publicity for me as an artist!

You can find my article HERE.

In other news... I've been working on more Eagle Studies, and they can be seen below.

This is the same sketchbook page that I posted earlier, but I added another eagle at the bottom right.

Here is the start of another sketchbook page.  The  open beak and unusual head angle was a challenge!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Some Eagle Studies

Well, as I mentioned in an earlier post, I want to really do some studies on Eagles, so I've been sketching them and making observations about their proportions and such. Here are the first of my sketches. I will probably sketch something else in the empty corner of the paper.


Here is my sketch book page with notes about my observations, I think the eagle at the top right looks better, and I think my notes about the eye and beak explain why, however, the heads are at slightly different angles and that could also be the main reason. Or maybe the one on the right is just a more handsome bird. If you can't read the notes, just click on the picture, you should be able to see a larger version. If its still too small to read, this might help: Basically they are just observations about the proportions. from the end of the beak the base is about the same distance as from the base of the beak to the eye. Then from the end of the beak to the pupil, about the same as from the pupil to the back of the head at eye level. I also noted that the beak opening lines up with the front of the eye, and that I didn't do that on the sketch to the left, which is whey the eagle on the left looks like he has too big a mouth.
Below I noted that the eagle from shoulder to where his tail begins, is about the length of three head-and-neck lengths.


Friday, March 1, 2013

First Public Event

Well, I am super excited!  I've been creating lots of artwork and posting it online for a while now, focusing on improving my skill, and technique, and not really trying too hard to actually sell any art.  I mean, I've offered it for sale on Etsy, and on Fine Art America, but I haven't really tried hard to market it.

I have often wondered how my paintings would do in comparison with other artists work.  If I put mine into a gallery would it sell as well as the other art?  Would people like it?  In short, is it really any good?

I mean sure, all of my friends and family say nice things about it... but would strangers also appreciate it?

Well soon, I will get the chance to find out.  The second Saturday of every month the town next to mine has an art walk, where different artist get to show their work.  Much of the businesses that participate are galleries, but a few other businesses open their doors to artists too.  One of those businesses is a Dance Studio, and on the second Saturday in April I will get to show my work and offer it for sale at the art walk.

Will it sell?  I don't know... but that isn't the main point.  I would keep creating art if I never sold another piece...  for me main point is going to be sitting back and observing other people's reactions to my work.  The economy is bad right now, and art is something people often choose to go without in tough times.  So I'll be happy if I sell any at all, but mostly I just want to see what people think.

More information about the Art Walk can be found HERE.

And While selling isn't my MAIN focus right now, it would be nice to sell a little, for one thing, my walls are getting quite full of paintings, and I am running our of room to hang them!  Also there is the matter that good quality art supplies cost money... a 2 oz tube of artist quality acrylic paint typically runs anywhere from around $5.00 to $16.00 depending on the exact pigment (color), and brand (for those non-artist types, even within the same brand and type of paint the price varies from one color to the next).  Canvases, brushes, mediums, varnishes.... all cost money.  In fact, for extremely fine line work a low cost brush costs $10.00, that's for ONE brush, and that is one of the cheaper brands, some brushes cost around $80 (I don't have any of those!), not to mention equipment like easels.  So, to make a long story short, while I would continue to paint even if I NEVER sold another painting, it would certainly be NICE to sell them at least often enough to pay for the supplies I use.  However, right now, I'm not getting my hopes up too high, I just want people to enjoy my art.

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