Sunday, May 28, 2017

Early May morning plein air


I started this painting about 5:45AM when the sky was pink with the rising sun. An hour later, when I quit, the sky was blue. I chose to leave the docks and boats out but I do plan to paint the boats soon.

What fun it was to paint so early. Try it, you'll like it.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Begonia in oil

Back to my plain air Begonia painting today except this time in the morning instead of afternoon. Of course, that changes the light which changes everything so I painted over most of it. Next time I'll try to paint alla prima to avoid this problem. Yes, I did take a photo of the flower yesterday but once you start painting from life, working from the photo is really disappointing.

O-2017-5-27 Begonia, oil, 10x8 inches

Friday, May 26, 2017

Four stages of learning


Here we are at the end of May 2017 and my flower and vegetable gardens are pretty much in. I just UNSUSCRIBED to all the garden/plant/seed supply email lists I've been on and I'm starting to think about painting again.

I switch mediums a couple times a year and once in while I try a new medium.  I spent last June working in acrylic (again) and that is the medium I thought of when I came across the four stages of learning presented by Nicholas Wilton. I'll apply this to my experience with acrylic but it is applicable to other challenges.

1. Unconscious Incompetence
We don't know what we don't know. For years I collected acrylic supplies not knowing which were quality and which ones would make learning this medium even harder for me.

2. Conscious Incompetence
I started painting. Oh, oh. Acrylic dries really fast with hard edges. I bought retarder and interactive acrylics and books and still, I was not happy. In this stage we know enough to realize that our art (or whatever we are trying to learn) is not so good. This is the stage where we either quit or we go for help.

3. Conscious Competence
In this stage I decided to work WITH the medium instead of trying to make it act more like oil paint. I got help by taking an online class last June with Chantel Barber. Through her advice I felt I was starting to "get it" and I changed my attitude about the medium to embrace it's drawbacks as attributes.

4. Unconscious Competence
This is the stage of working "intuitively." This is how I like to paint (of course). By the end of June of last year, I ended up with a few paintings in acrylic that I was happy with. But by mid-summer I had to put the acrylics away and return to pastel to prepare for upcoming workshops in July and October. If I had continued with acrylic I eventually would have been painting intuitively. And at some point I would run out of challenges and then it starts all over again to learn new material.

The point of this post is to remind you (and myself) to recognize that we are always in a stage of learning. Don't give up if you really want to achieve a goal.

Thank you Nicholas Wilton for your post about the four stages of learning. Now, back to my oil painting-in-progress.
Begonia in progress, oil, 10 x 8 inches

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

On the Easel 5-23-2017

I've been digging, weeding, planting, watering. Yesterday I finally got back to my easel setting up a plein air still life.

A simple pot of Begonias but the glass table-top and reflections in the pot made it more interesting to me.
Also, the almost neon orange red color...hmmm...haven't quite figured that out yet. Hope to get back to this soon - I think it is about 80% complete at this point.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

On the easel 5-13-17


Working on the second painting of the roses ("Petite Gift"), this time in oil. I'm trying to paint it more slowly and thoughtfully than I normally paint and I'm actually enjoying this s-l-o-w pace in oil because I'm getting reacquainted with the medium. I think this painting is about 80% complete at this point.


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Last Friday at our Painting Group


A charcoal sketch on UArt paper, my reference photo and my Soltek Easel with pastels.
This is as far as I got during our group painting time but I continued to work on it over the weekend. Scroll to the bottom to read more about last Friday's Painting Group session.
Petite Gift, pastel, 10x8 inches
Last Friday was framing day for ReneƩ while Ed painted on with his usual determination and focus. Both of these artists inspire us all.






Friday, May 5, 2017

Book: Art Journey - Abstract Painting

I'm happy to have been included in this beautiful new book published by North Light Books.

Click on the book cover for more information
Blue Road, pastel, Private Collection
Toward Evening, pastel, Private Collection
From the West Unto the East, pastel, Collection of the Artist