I am pleased to say that these three pieces are headed to the Collectors' Reserve Show & Sale at the Gilcrease Museum this fall. The Gilcrease has a fabulous collection of American art including some beautiful examples of Hudson River School paintings andholds what is considered among the world’s largest and most comprehensive collections of fine art, artifacts, and archives dealing with the American West. Located in Tulsa, Oklahoma, the museum grounds include 23 acres of thematic gardens showcasing the gardening styles of different time periods in the American West. It is an honor to be included in this exhibition.
This painting was begun before I went to Colorado in June and was based on field work I did last year in June. I had gotten it to a point and was really stuck, so the trip came at a good time enabling me to revisit the motif and refresh both memory and inspiration.
Last June I worked most of the time in a lovely aspen grove near my cabin. I did numerous drawings of individual aspen trees as well as ponderosa pines (which I posted here and here) and some motif drawings as well. But I did not really follow up on any of them until a few months ago. The idea came from a desire to revisit the subject but also the fact that I had been looking at the work of Emil Carlsen quite a bit. I was intrigued with his backgrounds and how he was able to create something that was at once atmospheric but also had some very definite decorative qualities and a flatter picture plane.
So, my idea here was to not follow my usual method of creating a background with multiple layers of scumbles applied with rags but to use more of a dry brush approach with more texture and opacity, but to try to make it read simultaneously as "air" but also decorative and somewhat flat. At the same time I wanted to continue with the challenge of face lit subjects and to also play with the idea of volume and flatness in those forms.
Aspen Grove Interior
39 x 33
Oddly, the "experimental" part of the painting seemed to go fairly well and I was happy with that part after a couple of passes. Here are a few details.
But, the part that should have been easy- the foreground grasses- just would not come together. I had originally envisioned some dappled sunlight in this area but every configuration I tried ended up detracting from the "main event", so eventually, when I returned from my trip I eliminated it. As a result I repainted the foreground about 6 times. Luckily, although I lost the transparency as a result, the layers and shifts in temperature (which this image doesn't capture very well) made up for it. The more simple "light shade" of the foreground seemed a better fit for the image.
This painting was started a year ago- either at the workshop or just after. The underpainting sat in my studio unfinished. Last summer I used it as a demo piece for the "scumble with rag" video I made (the back trees). Then it sat around again. With the coming of spring I felt inspired to work on it again. I was particularly interested in working with some of the concepts we have been studying in the Color II class and which I discussed in this post on the Field Notes blog - obviously vibration but also the idea that the mid tones can hold more chromatic color.
I lightened the value range from what I might typically do and tried to keep the color rich in the mid tones, while keeping the lights a little darker and the darks a bit lighter, narrowing the range. I am interested in exploring this further and am working on two other pieces now which include these ideas.
Winter came back with a vengeance this week, giving us our first snowfall. My favorite haunts were covered in four inches of snow. Here they are, back in November, shrouded in fog and rich with the color harmonies of late autumn.
Hi Everyone! Hope your new year is off to a grand start. We are busy making preparations for our annual spring workshop to be held March 27- April 2, 2015. This year promises to be better than ever - our new studio on the historic square of Clarksville is finished, our printmaking studio is ready to go, and as always our beautiful spring landscape is just steps away. Come enjoy acres of beautiful fields of lush spring grass, huge oaks, pines, hickories and elm starting to leaf out, and blooming dogwood and wild plum. Barn buildings, wildlife and farm animals complete the list of motifs available to paint. Plus, of course, our gorgeous sunsets and twilights!
Our spring workshop includes daily instructor demos, help at your easel, access to our 700+
volume art library and some fine hospitality and home cooking too!
This workshop is organized as a field to studio learning experience for painters of all levels. Our first few days in the field will include several instructor demos (both drawing and painting) and learning a diffferent way to collect reference for studio paintings which will reduce your dependence on photography and bring authenticity to your finished studio work.
During the last half of the workshop, we will work in our brand new beautifully equipped 4000 square foot studio, finishing paintings begun in the field, as well as starting new paintings and learning about indirect painting techniques like glazing, scumbling, velatura and transparent grisaille.
Come join us for an exciting week- one that is guaranteed to introduce you to new ideas and techniques for taking your work to the next level!Registration and information here.
Want to hear what students have to say? Click here.
Questions? Please email me. Hope to see you this spring. Happy Painting!
Here' s an etching which I completed recently which depicts a rainy day at a nearby pond. This image was inspired not only by the rainy weather we have had this fall but by 19th century Japanese wood block prints which depict the landscape in the rain. I wanted to see if I could capture the look of rainfall and also to evoke the mood it produces.
The plate was step etched, meaning that different parts of the plate were bitten for different amounts of time. The lighter areas like the trees in the distance and the sky were bitten for the shortest amount of time, then stopped out (covered with asphaltum) to keep them from continuing to etch. I then continued to etch the areas I wanted to be darker. The lighter areas were only etched for a few minutes. The total etching time was about 35 minutes.
All images can be clicked for a larger view. Here are a couple of details. The first one shows the line work in the trees, bushes and grass.
This one shows the rainfall and the pond water.
This etching as well as several others are available for purchase through my studio. Click here for purchase information.
The last few weeks we have had some lovely foggy mornings which are very typical for this time of year here. The exquisite, delicate color harmonies mixed with the mystery of forms enveloped by mist always intrigues me. So, this year I resolved to do a few paintings of fog motifs. In pursuit of that I did these three color studies last week. All are vine charcoal and pastel on toned paper.
This fall I have finally had the opportunity to get back to printmaking after a long hiatus. I love the process, a wonderful combination of artistry and craft. Up until now, I had concentrated on drypoint which is a type of intaglio process which involves working directly on the plate. Recently I have done some etching which involves covering the plate with a ground and then working the image into the ground. When the plate is placed in acid, the lines incised into the ground allow the acid to bite the plate. It's a little bit of magic every time you print!
I am offering a few of my efforts for sale through my studio. They are priced perfectly for a holiday gift! Click here to see what's on offer and to purchase.
It's my favorite time of year- finally! When I was saving this image of a newly completed painting to my computer, I had to laugh at the number of painting titles that start with the word "Autumn". There's Autumn… Light, Moment, Interlude, Sunrise, Evening, Morning, Sunset, Dusk, Road, Crossing, Woods, Reflections …well, you get the idea. Yes, I love to paint autumn. This year, I am actually painting it "in season" instead of months behind, so I hope to show a few more with titles that start "Autumn" soon.
As some of you know, we recently started a blog Field Notes over on the website for The Landscape Atelier. The plan is to post some great articles on drawing and painting the landscape, some art history and natural history stuff, video demos, as well as exhibition and book reviews from time to time. There are already several posts up that I think you would find informative. So,click on over and have a look!
OK, not really. It is rare for me to be painting ahead of a season. usually I am several steps behind, still painting spring when summer is in full bloom or painting fall when it's Valentine's Day. In this case, I managed to get out ahead of the season. I was happy to conjure up the cold quiet of a winter's day inside my studio while heat and humidity still prevail outside.
This painting will be exhibited at the Collectors' Reserve Show & Sale at the Gilcrease Museum, TUlsa, OK, November 6, 2014.
Is it fall? Not quite yet, but it is September and fall cannot be far behind. Fall and winter are my favorite seasons. Those spare, stripped down landscapes and subtle color harmonies thrill me as no saturated summer greens ever can. Here is one new painting for the Collectors' Reserve Show & Sale at the Gilcrease Museum opening in late October.
Hi All! I have just created a new Facebook page for The Landscape Atelier. Lots of good photos of our great new studio, workshop pics, etc. So, please. click on over and Like us!
In addition, we have launched the new blog Field Notes, which is at home on The Landscape Atelier website. There you will find lots of great information on painting and drawing the landscape, art history notes, natural history stuff and much more! So, please check it out, and follow us there. And, share it with your friends!
This little painting started as a demo in my recent workshop in Telluride. It will soon be headed to its new home in MA! Click for larger view.
8 x 12
Here is the reference material I used. The drawing is one of several studies I did of the small blue spruce that seemed to be everywhere. The pen and ink drawing (dip pen, sepia ink and wash) was done on location. The stream was actually about 10 feet to the right…but I moved it.
I started the painting during the workshop to demonstrate the technique I use in my underpaintings. It was completed later after I got home from my reference drawings and memory.
Hi Everyone! We are gearing up for a great Fall lineup of online classes at The Landscape Atelier as well as a three day workshop in October and a residency visit by several of our Atelier students.
This month only sign up for two or three of the Fall online classes offered and receive summer savings!If you sign up for any two classes together you will save $100; if you sign up for three online classes together you will save $150! Our Fall lineup includes our newest offering Foreground Studies, and two of our most popular classes, Drawing & Painting Trees and Composing the Landscape.
Choose the two class or three class option when you sign up. Then, as you check out you will be offered the chance to leave a comment. If you are signing up for two classes just type in the names of those classes.
These classes will fill quickly. Take advantage of Summer Savings today! Click here to register.