Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Inspiration: Pumpkins...

"Pumpkin Patch" 
transparent watercolor    10.25" x 6.5"

Pumpkins are an appealing subject for many artists. And no matter how trite or predictable they may seem, at this time of year I find them hard to resist -- especially when combined with fall foliage and New England's rural architecture. A recent trip to western Massachusetts resulted in a few photographs which, when combined with my file photos taken at Old Sturbridge Village, inspired a quick watercolor study. It's an imaginary scene I've titled "Pumpkin Patch." 

For this painting I used a fairly limited palette consisting of Winsor & Newton Sepia, Burnt Sienna, Raw Sienna, Yellow Ochre, French Ultramarine, and Mineral Violet -- and a bit of Holbein Brilliant Orange. I completed the painting pretty much freehand (although I sketched in a few roof lines with pencil to minimize distortion in the buildings perspective). I used just one brush --  #8 Da Vinci Cosmotop Spin brush, although I did put in a few tree-branch details with a #2 Cheap Joe's Golden Fleece Rigger. 

Here are a few of the photo images I used for inspiration...

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Second Place winner at Cape Cod Art Center

Pleased to announce that my painting, "Sun-Dappled Woodland," done in transparent watercolor, received the Second Place award in the 2020 "All New England" show at Cape Cod Art Center, Barnstable, MA.

Such a treat to get this news -- many thanks to Roberta Miller for her dedicated work on behalf of the CCAC during these past difficult months of the pandemic.

This is a plein air painting that I completed early last fall in Douglas, MA. 

"Sun-Dappled Woodland"
transparent watercolor  14" x 11" matted & framed
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Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Accepted--Upcoming Exhibit in Rhode Island

Thrilled to have one of my recent watercolors chosen by juror Paul George to appear in the "Paint What You Love" show at the Rhode Island Watercolor Society in Pawtucket, running from October 24  through November 20, 2020.

"Ivory Vase"
 transparent watercolor  matted & framed  11" x 14"



Friday, October 2, 2020

Afternoon at the farm...

A few weeks ago I spent a day at Old Sturbridge Village, a great place for artists to take reference photos for paintings. A favorite location at OSV is the Pliny Freeman farm (no relation that I  am aware of!!). The sunlight cast a warm glow on the buildings, and provided some good light-and-shadow contrasts, so the painting was a satisfying challenge. As usual, I didn't remember to start taking photos of my painting progress until I was well into it! Oh well... I am pleased with the finished product. 

Step one shows the sketched-in outline of the board fence in the foreground. I painted the sky first, with a wash of Cobalt Blue, using a 1" flat brush to cut around the roof lines of the buildings. While it was still damp, I deepened the tone of the sky on the right of the painting to give it some depth and variation.

Reference photo
In step two, below, I added color (Alizarin Crimson mixed with a bit of Payne's Gray} to the back building at far right, and to the chimney. 

I also added a pale wash of gray (a mixture of French Ultramarine and Sepia) to the roof, put in some shadow lines to emphasize its gambrel style of that roof, and brushed on an uneven wash on the fence boards, using warm and cool tones of gray wash. 

The final painting, showing additional details -- but not too much "fussy" stuff. 

"Freeman Farm in the Afternoon" 
transparent watercolor   14" x 11," including mat and frame