Posts Tagged ‘Evansville Wisconsin’

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Evansville – Tower House

July 15, 2013
Tower House; Oil on Canvas Panel 8" x 10"

Tower House; Oil on Canvas Panel 8″ x 10″

Back to Evansville. During the morning I worked at a park. The painting did not go well. Ate lunch and ventured on. I decided to return to town. Across from the library was this house with curved front windows. Interesting shadows and the window reflections caught my attention. I sat on a park bench and worked away.

About twenty minutes into the painting a fellow interrupted my work to take a photograph of me working.  Soon after, another fellow came by and decided to sit next to me. He was dressed in jeans, a Hawaiian shirt, a cap and carrying a plastic shopping bag. He looked to be about my age.  He asked a few questions about my painting and then it got interesting. He started by explaining that he was the youngest member of the Wisconsin Supreme Court. He proceeded to tell me that he had been married three times and that the three former wives were supporting him. He told me that he was not doing too bad for being over a hundred years old. He told me that he had started a business, a fire department when he was only seven years old. I asked him if he started the fires before putting them out. He chuckled and then told me that his first business was so successful that president Johnson congratulated him ( I didn’t ask to which President Johnson he was referring, I thought that might be pushing my luck).

About this time, I sort of phased out and paid more attention to my painting, occasionally tossing in a comment or two to keep it interesting. He rambled on telling me how I should sell my paintings but don’t bother telling the government about my sales, how he was collecting government checks, he was looking to get back up to Madison Wisconsin to reclaim his senate seat, the problems with the people running the state, facts about the old houses in Evansville how he liked my painting equipment, and on and on. After about an hour or so, he bid me good bye and good luck on my painting.

I enjoyed the look on the organizers face when I told him about this encounter. The organizer apologized but I told him not to worry. No harm done and I had another humorous plein air experience to share.

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Evansville – Pretty in Pink

July 14, 2013
Pretty in Pink; Oil on Canvas Panel 9" x 12"

Pretty in Pink – 220 Garfield; Oil on Canvas Panel 9″ x 12″

Had a successful painting in the morning. After lunch, I drove around and found this spot. A street with a good subject, plenty of shade,  and the street was closed to traffic due to construction at the end of the block.

It went fine except for the occasional construction vehicle which l rambled down the street. I had to make some adjustments due to the shifts in light which occurred over the two hours which I worked on this painting. I also had to compromise the foreground of the painting, rather, I used artistic license to indicate grass rather than the plants which covered this yard.

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Evansville – Morns First Light

July 12, 2013
Morns First Light; Oil on Canvas Panel 9" x 12"

Morns First Light – 143 Main St.; Oil on Canvas Panel 9″ x 12″

During a quick drive around town the previous day, I noticed this porch and flower baskets. I had a hunch that the early morning light could yield an exciting display.

The hunch paid off. I quickly set up my gear and got to painting. Soon into painting, I was interrupted by a mother and her three young boys. The woman apologized but she and the boys were curious. We chatted for a few minutes and they left. The boys thanked me and wished me luck. Very polite young men. About an hour later, the family was back. Again mom apologized and said that the boys were driving her nuts because they wanted to come back and see how the painting was progressing. Not a problem as they were still as nice and polite as an artist could want to encounter.

Finished the work, packed up and made my way to a park to eat lunch and decide the next move.

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Evansville – Blossoms at 217

July 11, 2013
Blossoms at 217; Oil on Canvas Panel

Blossoms at 217 Main; Oil on Canvas Panel 9″ x 12″

It was  “one of those days”.

The Beloit plein air competition had their show and sale over the weekend. The art work was to be picked up on Sunday. I was out of town for my sons wedding. The head of the Beloit committee had instructed me to meet her in Beloit Monday around 9:00am to retrieve my paintings, but call her cell phone first.  I called her around 8:15am. She was startled, and told me that she was on her way out the door for a doctors appointment. I was puzzled. She said that she had forgotten about the doctors appointment when I was given the instructions. I then I had to haggle to make arrangements to get the works later on Monday. I was told 1:30 – 2:00 pm would be the best option.

I was hoping to retrieve my works on the way up to the Evansville plein air competition (about 20 miles away) so that I could spend a full day in Evansville. Okay. Adjust. Get up to Evansville. Get some canvases stamped, work a small painting, get back to Beloit early afternoon.

Not so fast. Arrived in Evansville about 9:45am. The shop that would stamp the canvases (a must for any paintings in this competition) does not open until 10:00am…except Mondays when they are closed. WHAT??? Quick read through the instructions again. It mentions that the shop will be opened every day for the event. I found a phone number and gave a call. No answer. I left a voice mail and pondered my next move. This day was not proceeding according to my plans.

A couple minutes later, my cell phone rang. One of  the event organizers returned my call. He was sorry that the shop was not open as he was on his way up to Madison to take his daughter for a doctors appointment. The man said that he would call his wife and have her come over to open up the shop and stamp my canvases. She should be over in about five minutes.

It’s now about 10:00am. If all goes well, I should be able to get to work, though the ideal lighting is past, and finish a small work before heading back to Beloit. Not so fast. About thirty minutes later, a woman finally arrives in her car, talking on a cell phone (no jokes here), gets out of the car and gives me a hand gesture to let me know that she is on the phone and cannot interrupt her conversation. Interesting non-verbal communications between us as I pointed to my shirt (my name is on it) so that she could retrieve my information packet, got the canvases stamped, and received permission to use the shops bathroom all while not interrupting her conference call.

Off to paint…finally. I decided to find something as quickly as possible. Found the flowers at a house along Main Street to be of interest. Shadows and colors were not working for me but I pressed on. By 1-ish, I decided to stop. Not sure if I should wipe this canvas clean for another attempt tomorrow or come back.

Cleaned up, ate lunch out of the back of my car, made my way back to Beloit, retrieved my paintings, and back home. After unloading the car and getting a tall glass of ice water I reviewed the days work. I decided to work further on the painting on Tuesday morning. Better results ensued. Glad that Monday was past me.

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117 West Main – June 13

June 24, 2012

117 West Main – Evansville; Oil on Canvas Panel 11″ x 14″

Back up to Evansville. I had hoped to get something in the downtown area, but nothing stirred me. I rambled around for a bit and then found this scene. I was able to park and work from the edge of the street. The painting was moving quickly. A fair amount of traffic along this main drive. Occasionally drivers would move past slowly to catch a glimpse of the work in progress. A couple times, people stopped their cars to come over and visit, ask questions and find out about the competition. I was about an hour into the work when a woman approached me. I had a bit  of paranoia that she might complain about intruding on their neighborhood. Turns out that the woman was the mayor of the town and was very happy that an artist was painting in their neighborhood. Soon a couple other women joined in the conversation. According to one woman, a man recently inherited this house and is the sixth generation owner of this property. There was renovation in process and I did edit out the scaffolding on the east side of the structure and added flowers to the distant flower pot.

I finished this work, ventured over to a park and ate lunch. I traveled over to a a spot that was supposed to offer some good scenic possibilities. Didn’t work for me. I ventured back into town, found another spot along Main Street. This one did not go so well. At one point a man drove up with a camera. Said that he was a blogger for the Evansville Observer. He needed a ten second sound bite from me stating who I was and what I was painting. He allowed me to switch paintings first. Thank goodness. As noted, the second one failed. Shortly after arriving at home, I cleaned the paint off of the canvas. I trust that the next painting on this canvas will be more successful.

Artists were to submit one painting on Sunday morning for judging. I brought both paintings, just in case. Good thing too.  They decided to allow artists to stage their additional works on the east side of the exhibition hall to be available for sale. As artists arrived with heir works, I could see that there was a lot of very good competition at this event. While stalling around the hall, my wife and I met a number of very nice local artists. We were invited to join a few of them at the local diner for brunch/lunch before the awards ceremony. It was the right crowd. One fellow took Best of Show at the Beloit festival the week earlier and two other artists at the table received the big awards this day.

I am happy and flattered to report that as the awards ceremony ended and people were invited to purchase works, my painting, 117 West Main Street was immediately plucked from the easel and purchased. The woman purchasing the work told me that of all the works there that day, she felt that my painting best captured the spirit and feeling of Evansville. My other painting, Florals at the Eager Free was also purchased. Should have spent more time painting here.