Thursday, April 22, 2010

Plein Air Time!

The weather this spring has been wonderful. After getting my commission done and after the Easter rush, I finally made time to get outside and paint. What a wonderful feeling to be outside and finding so many things to paint. Even though I love going other places to paint. Mankato has many really scenic places to set up an easel. Every where I go I see potential paintings, from the parks, to the bike trails, to the old mansions and the old buildings on River Front. There are so many sights that I have a hard time settling on one and get started painting. Here are three from Tuesday--I have a couple more from Wednesday but need to take photos so will post tomorrow.
I love painting flowers. Could do it all the time. These were blooming in Sibley Park. I set up my easel right under this branch. And painted away. Sighhhh... what a wonderful afternoon.

I love willow trees. I have found a spot on a pond near home that has this beautiful willow on the shoreline. There is nothing quite as calming as viewing the tree swaying in a breeze and reflected in the almost calm water. I think I will be back for more of this tree this summer and fall.

One more of the willow. I got right down to the shore to get this angle. The lady who owns the land the tree was on stopped by to see what I was painting. She mentioned topping the tree and I said please don't do it. I love willows and she said she did too but the sticks that it drops all year long get tiresome. 
I did do some touch up of this one. I will post the updated one later. I did some defining of the trunk of the tree and the reflection in the water. I also found the right color to paint the water once I got back to my studio. I was using a limited pallet and did not have the right colors to mix the brownish/greenish of the water without reflections.
More tomorrow after I get new photos of my other little paintings. BTW these are all 8x10 oil on canvas. I have found that I like using oils much better I use a dryer in the paint. That takes care of my impatience with slow drying oils. I love how they blend but hate waiting time. 
Hope my readers are not impatient like me. More to post tomorrow.
PS--I just read over this post--I seem to love everything. I guess I should say I love to paint! ;-)


Earlier this month I was able to go to an art show of a works by a famous art forger, Elmyr de Hory.  It was amazing how he was able to copy the styles of many 20th century artists. He sold these paintings around the world letting each purchaser think that they had an original--just not an original from the artist they thought they were buying whether it was a Picasso, a Modigliani or a Matisse.  The show booklet had a couple of good reproductions of his forgeries. I was inspired to copy the copies and had some fun pretending to be Modigliani and Matisse for a a couple of afternoons.
These are my takes on Elmyr's forgeries. I am positive that they will not pass any tests for forgeries.
In the style of Modigliani 
I wonder why he did the empty eyes. She seems sad and spiritless.

In the style of Henri Matisse

One of the reasons these were easy to emulate is because they were relatively simple paintings with large plain areas of paint. I had a good time with the Matisse, scraping in the lines in the wall paper and painting the blue lines on the chase lounge. This lady is stylish by even today's standards--just a little midriff showing.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Spring Commission

Spring is defiantly here. It was 81 degrees at 9:00 last night as we came home from Holy Thursday Mass.  It was calm and as warm as a summer night. I was happy yesterday to finish this commission for my friend and her daughter. These will decorate a toddler's bedroom. Pink butterflies were fun to do. I could be really loose and playful with them. I painted these in oil on canvas using quin red for the pinks. It is really strong and you only need a touch of the red to make a strong pink. Here they are for your viewing pleasure. ;-)
Flight of the Butterflies
I hid a few little butterflies in the back ground.

Dotty Butterfly
The turquoise is very bright in this photo -- a bit softer in real life.

Happy Easter Everyone!