I picked up these oranges this morning at our farmers market and decided to do a quick painting alla prima (in one sitting). I limited myself to two hours. A nice exercise for a Saturday afternoon, kind of like practicing the piano.
This is a plein air I did last summer but just now got around to finishing it off in the studio. Most of my plein air paintings are completed in the studio since the field paintings look more like sketches and are very rough. Besides, I'm a studio painter by nature and find I have more control over my work that way.
This painting came about by accident. I was taking a plein air class and we were out on the shore in East Palo Alto, all the students fanning out to find the ideal landscape to paint. I saw this bulldozer in the middle of a field and was immediately taken by the way the blade reflected the sky colors. It was beautiful and I spent the next two hours "roughing it out". My fellow students thought it was amusing that I chose to paint this as a subject, but a lot of the time I'm more interested in what is inhabiting the landscape rather that the landscape itself.
As the year winds down I'm busy finishing off some incomplete paintings in order to clear the way for new projects for 2012. I've got a show scheduled for October and I need to clear the deck in order to get busy with the work for it (because we all know just how fast a deadline like that is on your doorstep in no time at all). Also, I'm going to spend more time focused on working this blog and developing a more online presence through sales. Basically it's time to push harder and get my work out before more art lovers. Stay tuned!
This is the finished plein air from the post below. Tomorrow I'm participating in a plein air paint-out with the Allied Arts Guild in Menlo Park and the artists are allowed to bring a finished work to include in the sale and exhibit following so I'm thinking this might be the one I'll bring.
Hit one of my favorite places today to paint- Rockaway Beach. Struck up a nice conversation with a couple of cool surfers and got to pet a dog. People like to see an artist painting outdoors, it brings folks together, if only for a few minutes. I'm still getting used to "being on stage" when doing plein air in a public area, but mostly it's fun chatting it up with folks. I've got a paint-out in a few weeks at the Allied Arts Guild in Menlo Park, so I'm trying to make good use of this great weather to get my painting chops down. I'll finish this study of the rocks in the studio and will post it if it turns out halfway decent. Cheers!
Yesterday the coastal fog cleared and I headed down our coast to Pescadero beach which is a beautiful 40 minute drive from my house. I was hoping to paint a few studies of the rock formations and breaking surf, however there was still a bank of fog hanging right on the beach so any hopes of painting there were soon dashed. Across the highway, looking east and toward the little town of Pescadero, the fog was thinning over the marshland and the morning sun was just filtering through. Pescadero Creek was absolutely shimmering sliver against the dark foreground like molten platinum and the effect was magical. I felt the same exhilaration that Church, Cole or Bierstadt may have felt more than a century ago as the landscape dances with the perfect light and creates magic. I made a few quick studies, took notes and absorbed the land. I finished the painting late last night in the studio, not wanting to let it rest and lose my momentum on the experience.
I'm getting a few recent plein air paintings ready to ship to their new owner, one of the loose ends I've put off since doing the 50-50 series. I've also got a new painting in the works and sketches begun for another. I'll post the progress on those soon.
That's all folks, the end of this 50-50 session. It was fun but I'm glad to be moving on to other paintings and projects that have been sitting on the back burner since June. Later today I take these over to the Sanchez Art Center to hang in preparation for the grand opening this Friday. I'll post a photo tomorrow of the installed work, they're pretty cool all grouped together.
Hey folks, I'm leaving for Los Angeles on Friday then next week I'm in NYC, so I'll be more sporadic in my posts since my paint-time will be impacted. Hang in there, I'll get back to it as soon as I can and promise you the 50 sweets you so deserve. Thanks so much for following along, your comments on Facebook and support are much more than I imagined, and for that, I am grateful.