Wednesday, June 8, 2016


Please join and keep updated with my class schedules, where I am painting and other great artistic info.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Choosing subject matter - Put together a landscape using three photos.

It is always good to use your own photos, something personal.  You will know and understand the landscape better this way. Pay attention to where the light is coming from, perspective, eye level and time of year.

Turn Two or more pictures into one landscape

No matter how I log in, I always put this in backwards. 

 The finished product is an acrylic painting.  I first studied the images and decided what I liked and what I did not like about each landscape.  Take notes so that you can become aware of your visual thinking. 

Be sure to sketch on board with charcoal so that you can make changes. Come up with a strong plan, no details.   I then seal off charcoal with my Matt Medium. You can also use spray fixative.

Before that do a drawing on paper, of a plan, including the contour of the land.  This will help with the perspective and be sure to pay attention to the picture  plane and make structures smaller as they go into the distance.

Thumb nails to decide on design only.  How much sky and how much foreground. No details at this stage.  Can always do studies if you think you will have a hard time with the drawing.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Translating a famous painting and understanding why it works.

Almost finished painting:  Going backwards.....

Setting up my pallet:  Looking for Hopper's colors.

Looking at Hopper's way of designing.

Using the tracing paper to learn and not to copy.  
First one is a literal copy.  The second one is about observations.

Thumb nail sketches:  What do I want to do in my interpretation:

The painting I am researching.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Concord Art Association Class

Students will be challenged by what a contemporary landscape is all about. We will work a little more on our mini paintings, roughing them in with the most simplified shapes possible. These are meant to be quite, loose and expressive, no detail.  Then the next challenge is to work from a famous artist painting that you admire. Bring in your books.  Students will break down the painting and discover what the essence of this painting really is and paint from it. Simplify and Simplify!! It will be exciting. You might look up Catherine Kehoe's web page, she works from the masters all the time. Might give you some ideas. I will bring in examples as well. See you in class on Tuesday.

First steps in the process of designing and painting a landscape - Diptychs and Triptychs

First you must pick a subject matter that moves you. This is a location where I take students up to Maine to paint in June. It is a familiar spot and holds some excitement for me. I will take the image off my computer and print this out in black and white: one over exposed and the other under exposed. This is useful for seeing simplified shapes. Then I will print color, and also manipulate the color to give myself more information and ideas. It is great to have a hard copy because I can draw into it and/or cut it up to discover more ideas. Once selected, start into your thumb nail sketches which should only take about 10 minutes. These should not be labor intensive. This is the designing stage.

The process of designing and painting a landscape - Diptychs and Triptychs

This is the planning stage and I am doing sketches and tracings of my subject matter. I first do thumb nails just to decide on design. Is it going to be a triptych or diptych? How am I going to use the space. It is never about copying the photo. It is about designing and deciding what I like and will include and what to exclude. Simplify! There is always time to put more stuff in the picture plane. Then I do sketches to find the flow and rhythm of the painting... anchoring locations of shapes to make my design stronger. Even finding where MY thirds will be above and beyond the fact that a landscape is a 1/3 1/3 1/3. My division, again is to explore design and what is relevant to me in this landscape. It is always about finding something personal, effective and new to the naked eye.