Photo Bomb Today

I realized summer was moving ahead quickly and I need to get lots of photographs to carry me through the next winter’s painting.  Sort of like getting all the fruit made into jam and cucumbers pickled. So Terry went with me to Baskett Slough (is there any where else?) with our three cameras and we began foraging for beautiful landscape reference photos.

The grasses are mature now and different wildflowers are thick everywhere — summer is very different from spring. The oaks were stalwart as ever, no change in their color for a few more months.

At one of the ponds we found a hardworking heron, busily hunting whatever looked delicious. His mate was nearby in the thick grass, probably watching the young. As he worked the pond from both sides I suddenly noticed in the viewfinder that I’d been snapping photos of a quiet doe passing through the scene. Nice to have a deer and a heron in the same shot!

Here are some of my pickings today. Now I can look forward to winter–sort of.



New art!  Here’s a cloudscape over the Willamette Valley. 11 x 14″, framed with gold wood frame with linen liner. Very traditional looking, yet Impressionist color and paintstrokes. $160 plus shipping.IMG_0469

A New Challenge: Plein Air Yaquina

Today was my first day painting outdoors (plein air) this year, because it was our FIRST really nice day here. Sunny all day. No rain. I had entered the “Plein Air Yaquina” competition, which involves painting outdoors in the Yaquina River watershed. I have until August 1 to paint an entry for the show, which will be juried and held on Labor Day Weekend.  It’s a community effort in the little town of Toledo, here on the coast. And it’s an excellent motivator to get out and paint.

Terry and I drove along the river and found several possible sites. Finally I just stopped and set up. An hour later, I had a good study done. It was just heaven, with NO WIND. You read that correctly. So different from the actual beach areas where the ocean breeze is continual and wildly punitive to anyone with an easel  and a palette loaded with wet piles of paint.

It was so nice listening to birds chirping like crazy, ducks beating the water with their wings, and watching herons looking for their brunch along the water’s edge.  I’ll be painting at my studio in the Lincoln City Cultural Center over the weekend, but Monday morning, it’s back to the river.

Big Painting Studio News

It’s here!  Spring. But you wouldn’t know it. Cold, rain, and waiting for that flirtatious sunshine. That makes it a great time to paint in the studio, though. And, speaking of studio, I will be launching a new painting venue soon. I’ve rented “The Principal’s Office,” at the historic DeLake School, now the Lincoln City Cultural Center. It’s small but very high-ceilinged and has a large window. Perfect. I’ll start by moving in an easel, paints, comfy chairs and whatever else needed to get settled for painting and visiting. I plan to paint there four days a week:  Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday — from mid-day to late afternoon  or so). Stay tuned and I’ll follow up with plans for “opening day.”


Painting a Wave Exercise

Here’s a wave-painting process example.I used a split complement triadic color scheme: blue-green, red-violet, and yellow-orange. I worked in the darks first on a canvas toned with cadmium red acrylic. After the darks, I put in basic color and value choices. As you see, I wiped out the scud line (water’s edge) and repainted it a bit farther away from the viewer. Lastly, I worked up the highlights, shadows, and reflections in the water and wet sand. A few spatters, a bit of palette knife, and it’s done.

16 x 20″

Ultramarine blue

Alizarin crimson

Yellow ochre

Titanium white

Painting Water Scenes Class

I’m busy working up some demonstration and project paintings for my Monday class at Artists’ Studio Association. The class is full, so I am eager to see what we can do. I’ve got an 11-page handout. Plus charts. Plus two paintings to do. Four hours. I think it will be fun, move quickly, and convert some more painters to oil paints.

I want to work on reflections in still and rippled water, so have some photos of the Siletz Bay Wildlife Refuge, which has a waterway between the Siletz River and the Pacific Ocean. I took photos last autumn, and like them because they aren’t so green — which is how Oregon usually appears. Too much green sometimes. Anyway, here’s a work up I did today, which will likely be a quick study for the class, before we move to some ocean wave paintings.IMG_0150Siletz Bay National Wildlife Refuge, Autumn.  8 x 10″ oil on canvas panel

Painting Needs a Name

Just wrapped up this painting from a photo I took last fall at the Siletz Bay National Wildlife Refuge. It’s 30×40 — a big one. I just had to add a few birds flying in the sky. Now, what to name it. I have a difficult time with naming paintings. Suggestions, please!

Tomorrow, Saturday,IMG_3163.JPG I’ll be doing my last painting demonstration of February at the Co-op Gallery. Stop in for a chat. I’ll be painting from 11 till 1, and working at the gallery the rest of the day.