Friday, April 29, 2011
My cousin Goldie and I set out on a plein air painting trip to Las Golondrinas yesterday. We ended up not painting there, not because it wasn't beautiful (it was) but because I would've had to lug all of my painting paraphenalia too far down the hill. So we decided to turn around and set out for Jemez instead. This was our picnic spot by the Jemez river - sandwiches, Cheetos, and apples. This is also where I spent the afternoon painting while my cousin sketched. The spring green of the trees against the red of the hills and the pale olive color of the Russian Olive trees - pictures just don't capture it.
The red of the Jemez hills - we were trying to figure out if the soil was clay or limestone. It has so many of what look like erosion cut outs - is it from water or wind? It's beautiful, whatever it is! We also went up to the Gilman Tunnels. The water was flowing up there big time. I shot a short video I will post later.
The sheep at los Golondrinas. I'm thinking they're Churro, but I don't know my sheep very well. This would make a nice painting with all the spots of light.
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
I have six new 150 Challenge paintings available to you to see!
I worked ALL day today and even made it to Curves and ran a few errands. Of course, it's 9:30pm and I haven't eaten dinner yet...wow, I'm kind of hungry.
I've used up all of my 8x8 canvases. I have three cases coming but not until next week. I have 15 8x10s and my art store should also have more ordered for me.
I have my 150 postcard in the works, along with press releases, so thinks are moving along well.
I have a couple of fun things planned too: a paint out day trip to Las Golondrinas, a fundraiser dinner, and a paint out and potluck somewhere up in the Monzano mountains. Good night!
Oh, I almost forgot - check out the new painting at www.150challenge2011.blogspot.com.
Tuesday, April 26, 2011
Sunday, April 24, 2011
Friday, April 22, 2011
All of my 150 Challenge paintings are posted now. I will be starting on #97 tomorrow,
and working my way to #1. I am having so much fun right now, even though it's lots of work.
You may see all of the paintings at www.150challenge2011.blogspot.com. Keep watching, keep commenting and emailing me, you're keeping me inspired!
This is a 150 Challenge painting not yet numbered.
I have three new 150 Challenge paintings posted to the blog, but guess what? I have 13 more paintings completed! I am definitely in my zone right now. I will be working on #98 tomorrow and I am loving the journey. I can't wait for the destination, which is my show that opens on June 3.
So stay tuned, and I will try to post at least three tomorrow, depending on time. Weems Old Town already has a list going with potential buyers, which is good. I may try to head down there for a couple of painting demos next month. I also have a paint out to Las Golondrinas and a couple of other cool places coming up in May.
Oh, and guess what? We are starting up the first ever ANNUAL ALAMEDA STUDIO TOUR! I am so excited. We already have 20 artists and more are coming on board every day.
It will be October 8 and 9, 2011, coinciding with the last weekend of Balloon Fiesta. That means that I am opening up my studio (dust and all) to all of you. More about that later.
So, to see the newest paintings, go to www.150challenge2011.blogspot.com
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Monday, April 18, 2011
Saturday, April 16, 2011
A new 150 Challenge painting. Pears are always a challenge to me and I haven't painted that many of them - although I try to do at least one pear painting per show. I think these turned out nice and I'm gonna paint me some apples too! I should have some new paintings posted on the 150 Challenge tonight.
Friday, April 15, 2011
Good morning! I just wanted to let you know that I have four new 150 Challenge paintings completed. You may preview them at www.150challenge2011.blogspot.com.
These paintings were all so fun to paint. I am loving and learning all about the oils - which colors I can't live without, which brushes give the best effect for what I'm trying to achieve, how to pare everything down to the bare minimum so I get the best but simplest first impression of my subject.
And you know how much I like painting wild masses of flowers. I had a blast on the painting above, "THE BLANKETS."
Anyway, I am organized, focused, and in the zone. Stay tuned.
Thursday, April 14, 2011
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
I have three new 150 Challenge paintings finished and you may view them at www.150challenge2011.blgospot.com.
I have calculated that I need to complete three paintings a day to be ready a week before the show starts June 3, 2011.
I am in the zone now and they are coming to me like crazy.
I am running out of paint! So I will order more today. Also more solvent, medium, and that Old Holland violet grey that I can't seem to do without. I will start varnishing the paintings tomorrow and framing them next week.
I am headed to pick up more 8x10 canvases today, along with a 30x40 that I will complete for the upcoming fundraiser, "ART HAS HEART." That's the fun event that Lou Diamond Phillips always comes to. I'm excited! I better get moving, the event is May 8. I don't even know what I'm going to paint yet.
Your comments are keeping me going, so please, keep them coming.
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Monday, April 11, 2011
I painted three 150 Challenge paintings today but I am waiting until tomorrow to photograph them instead of depending on the light in my studio. I liked this one very mugh though, so I decided to snap a photo anyway so you could see it. All of my small fruit trees have bloomed and my large old apple tree is in full bloom right now. Man, I do love spring.
This painting is actually a composite from a couple of blossom photos up in Taos. Hope you like this and I will post this one along with the finished Placitas painting and an Elena Gallegos sunset tomorrow sometime.
Sunday, April 10, 2011
Okay, I took off early Friday morning to go plein air painting in Placitas. My destination was the Placitas Open Space. Never found it. I ran into another painter and we tried to find it together, but no luck. The end of the directions were a little sketchy. So anyway, I ended up going to the Placitas Loop Road to paint. Here's what I took with me:
Little cigar pochade box
Three toned canvases
Bungee cord (to hold canvas in cigar box)
Folding stool (for sitting)
Limited palette: cadmium yellow light, cadmium red light, prussian blue, and titanium white
Tissue (for wiping off brush), gloves, jar of odorless mineral spirits (for cleaning brushes and as medium for paint), one large brush, one small plexiglass palette, water (for drinking), an apple, and a hat
I drove down the road, found my "scene" and parked my car. The first thing I noticed was that the wind was blowing about 45 miles per hour. Great.
I opened the back, took out the stool and set it up. I opened the tripod (the cigar box was already attached), set it up, took out my paints. I set up my tissue and can of solvent, put on my gloves. I took out the canvas, attached it to the box with my bungee cord and it promptly blew off and down the arroyo. Got it back and realized the bungee cord is made more for thinner wood panels and not canvas. So I finally got it to hold a little.
I put out big globs of each paint color, and dipped my brush into the thinner. I sketched the scene, and started mixing my colors. I then realized that I didn't like cadmium yellow light. It's too bright and had a cold tone. I also didn't like prussian blue, I needed ultramarine! Oh well.
So I started painting and was trying to look at the scene, hold my palette, and keep a hold on my canvas so it didn't blow off the box and down the road. Luckily my hat had a strap so it stayed on my head.
Okay, one thing about plein air painting and a limited palette. IT IS HARD WORK. You have to focus and think. You have to mix all of the colors that you see out in the field from just four colors. I never could get the magenta that I wanted.
I did absolutely love being out there in nature all by myself. Time just goes away. I did see a few walkers on the road. Including the sweet older lady (about my age really) in her little Subaru. She has four dogs with her. She takes out two dogs, attaches them to leashes, and drives down the road AT A SNAIL'S PACE, so the dogs can walk. Then, when those two are done, she puts them in the car, takes out the other two, attaches them to the leashes, and they get their turn. It's hilarious. I think I might have a photo of her. If I do, I'll post it.
So I guess the moral of my story is this: sometimes you don't end up where you thought you were going, but there's a lot of fun and discovery in the journey, and you may not have everything you want, but you probably have what you need. And you may not really like what you produced but you are going to tweak it in the studio until you love it. And that's why my plein air paintings sometimes mean more to me than studio paintings. There's a lot more challenge and hard work involved. You're out there in nature and time just doesn't exist. You are stuck with what you brought with you. You have to actually mix a green that you see in the hills from a crappy blue and a cold yellow. And you do it! Plein air painting rocks!
I'm calling this one, "SEMI CRAPPY PLACITAS PLAIN AIR PAINTING THAT I'M GOING TO TWEAK AND SELL TO SOMEONE WHO UNDERSTANDS." Or maybe just "Placitas Arroyo." Ha.
Thursday, April 07, 2011
New Mexico storms and sunsets. Both beautiful subjects to paint. But together - the impact is incredible. With oils and these small canvases, you can just blend, blend, blend. You can be as abstract as you want. There is nothing linear except the horizon line and even that is subject to my imagination. I love this painting. I also did one for the 150 Challenge. See it here.
Purchase information is below. These paintings are only $85 until the 150 Challenge is over.
Sunsets and storms are the best to paint. Especially one like this. You can blend, blend, blend. You can be as abstract as you like. New Mexico has some of the best sunsets and storm clouds in the world, in my view, and I could paint them exclusively. Forever.
Purchase information is below.
Wednesday, April 06, 2011
I love these hollyhocks! Can you tell that they're painted on panel instead of canvas? For some reason, hardboard panel gives me the opportunity to apply the paint much thicker (which is so fun) and it seems much more "painterly" and immediate instead of thought out so much or like a photograph.
This little painting just says "Spring" to me.
To see purchase information, please click onthe Paypal button below.
Oh, and I also have a new hollyhock painting for the 150 Challenge. To view, go to: www.150challenge2011.blogspot.com
Tuesday, April 05, 2011
oil on canvas hardboard
This is my daily painting for today. I spent most of the afternoon narrowing a million photos down to about 200 that I want to paint for the 150 Challange. The rest I put in plastic bags and hid away so I will forget about them and just concentrate on the ones I really want to finish. I'm going to put them in a big stack and go one by one in order until they're done. Except for my figurative pieces. Those I need practice with, so I will spend a week or so working on those all together. This particular painting was fun to paint. It's Taos mountain in late fall, the trees are still golden but there is a little snow on the ground. Winter is coming! Purchase information at the bottom.
The painting below is part of the 150 Challenge. I really love working with masses of flowers like this - paintings like this make me so happy to be a painter and to work with color every day.
To see the finished painting, go to www.150challenge2011.blogspot.com
oil on canvas board
Okay, I can finally say it...I'M BACK!
Whew, I thought I was never going to get the urge to paint again. I did everything possible to put off getting myself into the studio. But today is a new day and I got quite a bit of work done. This little painting really is my muse. If I get stuck and want to paint a meadow of flowers, I just pull out one of my photos of a painting I've already completed of these flowers and that's all I need to get me going. All I have to do is block in the shape of the first flower and I'm ready to go. This painting is available for purchase, the info is just below.
I also have four new 150 Challenge paintings - yes, that's right, FOUR. I told you I'd been busy. You may view the new 150 paintings here: www.150challenge2011.blogspot.com.
SO, no one please ask me to come to a meeting or go to an event, or go on any day trips, because I am in the zone. Well, okay, maybe one day trip.
Friday, April 01, 2011
This photo is from Willard, New Mexico, the hometown and growing-up place of my husband's family. There might be about 300 people there, I'm not sure. It's pretty desolate but beautiful in its own way, and my favorite auntie lives there. Some of our relatives own this pretty little cantina. We just got back from a day trip there and hope to go back again in late spring when everything is green and pretty.
Anyway...I am still trying to get back into painting mode. I really think I am suffering from some kind of spring fever or painter's block. Right now I would rather do yardwork than paint. I would rather clean cupboards than paint. I would rather sleep than paint. How sick is that?
I have the 150 Challenge to finish, I have two large paintings to complete for fundraisers, I need to paint some large pieces for my galleries, I owe my sweet brother a painting, I owe my favorite friend and collector 4-5 paintings, I have to do a small painting for another charity, and I have three small 8x10s to complete for customers. So what am I doing? A LOT OF READING. Exercising every day. Eating because I'm putting pressure on myself. You know, the usual.
I know this is just one of those things that happens to everyone in their creative life. I also know that once I start the painting process, I won't stop for a solid 8 months. Gee, maybe that's why I'm dragging my feet. Anyway, any words of encouragement you have, I'm listening.
Well, to get me going I do plan on going to a LOT of paint-outs this summer. Just listen to some of the places on the Plein Air Painters of NM agenda: Las Golindrinas, Canyon Road, Lamy, Galisteo, the town of Dixon, Ruidoso and Lincoln County, the zoo. the Botanic Gardens, White Sands, Taos, Arroyo Seco, Villanueva State Park, Eagle Nest, Cimarron, Elena Gallegos, Socorro and surrounding areas. The list goes on and that's only a few of them and that's only through June!
So bear with me, please, and don't stop watching my blog. I'm still here...I'm just resting up and preparing myself for the big start up day. And I will announce it in big capital letters saying, "TODAY IS THE DAY!." No, not yet, I didn't mean right now, you kow what I mean. Have a great weekend and Happy Birthday to my daughter Maggie, who is turning 26 today.