Archive for the ‘Door County’ Category

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Fish Creek Plein Air

September 12, 2018

Weekend Getaway – Watercolor on Arches 140# CP – 7″ x 11″

 

Habored at Fish Creek – Watercolor on Arches 140# CP – 11″ x 7″

Had a great time leading a Watercolor workshop at the Peninsula School of Art. Fun and challenging group of artists. What a joy!

The workshop completed, we¬† decided to venture into Fish Creek. I took time to paint while my wife relaxed (which is to say, she read a little bit, walked into town to check out a couple shops, got some lunch for us, etc.). The dog slept. I decided to try painting on a new paper. New to me that is. It is paper from Dick Blick’s. In this small size, I found that it acted very similar to Arches. Working watercolor en plein air is an extra challenge. Although I managed my time and paint application well, there is still that test of patience when having to wait for the paper to dry adequately before applying more intense colors into key spots.

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Workshop Demonstrations

September 11, 2018

Demo #1 – Watercolor on Arches 140# CP – 8″ x 12″

Demo #2 – Watercolor on Arches 140# CP – 8″ x 12″

Demonstration paintings from a recent watercolor workshop at the Peninsula School of Art. The strategy is to connect areas of the painting to help create unity especially in and with the subordinate shapes.

#1 – started with the sky and moved directly into the background trees – starting at the left and increasing the intensity and vibrancy of the trees as I moved to the right. Then moved to allow these colors to strategically flow into the foreground. After allowing the initial wash to dry thoroughly, I utilized negative painting techniques to separate and emphasize subjects.

#2 – I began with the background trees, moving from the left. As I worked the trees, I utilized this same wash to indicate the shadows of the shed and its shadow.

Often, the initial wash is sufficient to define the important elements and lessen the need for a lot of cluttering details.

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Flower Box

September 5, 2018

Flower Box – Watercolor on Arches 140# CP – 11″ x 7″

This design has been used successfully in several oil paintings. I opted to utilize this as another demonstration for my workshop. After doing my pencil sketch, I did all the shadows as a single, connected wash. The shadows alone make for an interesting abstract.

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Ephraim Cottages

September 4, 2018

Ephraim Cottages – Watercolor on Arches 140# CP – 9″ x 12″

Another watercolor created for my workshop students. I started the painting with the shadows under the eaves of the cottage on the left. I continued through the middle buildings while working the trees in the background allowing the areas to bleed into each other. The juggling act continued through the cottage on the right and into the foreground. I allowed the initial wash to dry thoroughly  before I returned to add a few bolder passages.

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Autumn Flowers with Apple

August 26, 2018

Autumn Flowers with Apple – Oil on Canvas Panel – 10″ x 8″

Last autumn, on a weekend trip to Door County, my wife purchased a small bouquet of autumn blossoms at a farmers market. For a vase, we improvised and used an empty apple cider container. We brought the flowers and container home with us.

I thought that the flowers were interesting enough to use as a base for a still life prop for my art classes. I left the flowers in the improvised vase. I started this painting as a demonstration for my oil studio class. Did not finish it in class. At my studio it sat while I contemplated how I would finish the painting. Finally realized that the improvised vase was the issue. Perusing my still life props, I found a vase that could be the solution to my dilemma. Though the flowers are long since gone, I was able to impose this vase into the painting. This works for me.

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Birch Trees

August 11, 2018

Birch Trees – Watercolor on Aquabord – 10″ x 8″

I decided to play with watercolor on this surface. I utilized a simple reference photo from one of our Door County trips.

Once a very simple drawing was in place, I worked the negative areas, that is, the areas around the birch limbs and branches, in one continuous wash. I augmented the dark portions to separate the background from the mid and foreground grasses and finished with a few opaque applications of paint to accentuate the leaves.

I like to way that watercolor reacts on this surfaace and love the idea that completed watercolors can be framed without the need for glass or polycarbonate glazing. I am looking forward to working with this process en plein air.

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Morn on Cedar Court Part 2

July 17, 2018

Morn on Cedar Court – Oil on Canvas – 20″ x 20″

This is the souped up version.

This painting had been at a gallery for a few months. At the time of retrieval, I felt that the work needed “something”. I felt that the abstract design was decent, but something was failing. It sat in my studio for almost a year. It occurred to me that the painting needed to be brighter, more vibrant.

Late one afternoon, before finishing for the day, I put the painting up on my easel. I added a few strokes of brighter highlights near the focal point. Just a few. I decided to take a break and examine the changes to see if it would work. During dinner, we checked the work and decided it was a better direction. A few days later, I went drastic and, in essence, reworked the painting.

Much happier with it now.