Saturday, November 29, 2014


Oil on canvas  -  34"x30"  -  2013.  I am entering this painting I a show at Studio Place Arts in Barre, Vermont.  The theme of the show is "Amore".  I feel like this one fits that theme.  The dominant woman, like a modern day Carmen, uses one man to taunt another.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Some of my work will be shown at Catamount Arts in St Johnsbury VT as part of the Second Tuesday group show. Second Tuesday is an art discussion group that has been meeting for more than twenty years. Paintings from my series "Breaking Through" and "Atlantic Beaches" will be on view.
Breaking through, is the first group of little paintings that I have done that are purely abstract.  they seem to be about breaking through the cobwebs to some inner, yet hard to reach passion.  I think I will pursue this series and make some bigger ones.
Atlantic beaches is about dead things on the beach.  Dead jellyfish.  Broken shells.  Bits of seaweed. As part of my larger "Small Things" series (I'm up to about 135) these are a celebration of and homage to tiny things under our feet or right in front of our faces that all too often go unnoticed.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Persephone climbing up out of the Underworld - Resurrection

I am posting views of the same painting - one of them upside down.  Which one is upside down?  I don't know, because I can't decide which way is up.  After being stuck for months in an un friendly place, Persephone has finally seen her chance to get out of the Underworld.  I have depicted her doing this under her own steam.  She doesn't need anyone to lead her out anymore.  She can do it on her own.  I think that this series is drifting away from the classic myth and is becoming a metaphor for my life and, indeed, for the lives of all women who find themselves stuck in an unfulfilling life without knowing quite how they got there.  We have to realize that we can climb out and create a new life.  It will take luck, commitment and perseverance.  In this painting, Persephone reaches for the winter dead tree and as she touches it, new life springs forth.
But which way is up?

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Painting in progress Monday morning

These are two images from my painting group on Monday morning.  The second picture shows the work in progress and the first is how it stands now. This is all about practice, practice, practice.  A lot of figure artists start with the darks and gradually build toward the lights and that works really well for them.  It might work really well for me too but instead, I like to establish the lightest lights early on.  Maybe that is because I tend to use fairly stiff brushes that would scratch the underpainting off if I tried to apply lights on top of the darks.
oil on canvas - 24"x18"

Saturday, November 15, 2014

An alla prima portrait with a few revisions.

Before and after shots of the picture I made last Monday.  I really liked painting this woman with her up turned face.  In the first one, her forehead doesn't look like it is tipped back to go with her raised chin.  So, in the revision, I shaved a little off her forehead. Then - Yikes! - I noticed that her earring was coming out of the side of her cheek, not from where her ear would be, so I changed that too. And since the picture was taken, I have softened the shadow on her right cheek.  This seems to be part of a "yellow chair" series.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Painting revisions - something about green

Here is the painting again with the revisions.  I think the greens are OK and I like all of the roundness - in the cushions and in the model.  I won't go any further with this painting though, as I am interested in nudes only as a painting exercise.  I would love some input.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Trying to get comfortable with green

This painting that I did in a quick two hour session last week isn't too bad, but there are some changes that I want to make. Mostly, I will try to get a lot more green into the shadows.  I am not particularly interested in perfect skin tones, but in COLOR to convey mood and emotion.  I have been having a lot of trouble learning to use green, so I will try it here by adding it to the shadows and making the lower cushion green.  Also, I'm going to fatten up the legs and even out the breasts.  I'll post the changes soon - stay tuned.

Sunday, November 2, 2014


So here is the same painting again. What is different? The portrait is still all about color and any differences you see are due to the photograph. I have not changed any of the color tones. The previous photo is the more accurate. I did move the nose over about an eight of an inch - perhaps not quite enough - and I aligned the curves of the chair back and toned down the green on the forehead a bit. Except for moving the nose again, I am pretty well satisfied with this piece as it is. I don't feel any need to refine it further by tidying up the back ground or anything.