Posts Tagged ‘green’


Sittin’ by the Tracks

August 23, 2017

Sitting by the Tracks – Oil on Linen Panel – 9″ x 12″

The competition, replacement and Gems paintings turned in. Unsold paintings to be picked up from the venue late the next day. With an afternoon available, I grabbed my gear and set out for another painting.

I caught sight of this design a few days earlier. Decided to investigate this as an idea for next years competition. Went to the spot where first saw the scene. It was not good enough. I wanted to get closer to the rail crossing and orange truck. I made my way to the backside of an apartment building, to a closed street. Grabbed my gear and set up near the tracks on an abandoned siding. The painting was progressing well, when I was interrupted by a pedestrian. It was a worrisome resident of the apartment checking to see what I was up to. Realized what I was painting and exclaimed, “Don’t know why you’re painting that. It doesn’t look like a very pretty sight to me”. Critics.

I continued with my work and was interrupted again. This time by an older gentleman who was out for a bike ride along the adjoining recreational trail. He stopped, figured out what I was painting and offered the comment, “Well! When you finish that, you are going to have a very unique painting.” I’ll take that as a complement.

Due to the sun shining and a lack of available shade, this was one of the rare times when I set up an umbrella to shade my easel while I painted. Due to wind conditions, I had to paint most of this work while holding the umbrella with my free hand. Other than that handicap, the work seemed to paint itself.

My son had warned me about trains which regularly travel those tracks. Though I kept alert, no trains came through. I finished the painting, packed up my gear and as I pulled away from my parking spot, I heard a noise. The 4:05 train coming through.


Blackhawk Spring

July 10, 2017

Blackhawk Spring – Oil on Canvas Panel – 10″ x 8″

One of the first warm spring days and the chance to get out to paint. Some trees were were still in buds and others were just revealing their new leaves.  Trying to capture the indications of the warm colors of the buds and the cool colors of the new leaves is a bit mind bending. No matter what, it was a fun morning to be out putting paint on canvas.


May Morn on Limestone Road

July 4, 2017

May Morn on Limestone Road – Oil on Canvas Panel – 8″ x 16″

Found this farm a few miles south of my home. I have worked a couple, less than successful, paintings of the barns. Decided that a longscape of the scene could offer better possibilities. Looking forward to exploring additional options at this location.


April on Wheeler

July 1, 2017

April on Wheeler – Oil on Canvas Panel – 8″ x 16″

Late April, nice weather and a chance to get out to paint. Spring is tough. The bright, fresh “green” can be overwhelming. The implementation of warm colors is necessary to get the landscape painting work.


Gallons of Galas

June 25, 2017

Gallons of Galas – Oil on Canvas – 11″ x 14″

Started as an example for my Saturday morning students. The reference photo is this bucket of apples sitting on a deck. I used this reference to cover three aspects of design.

First, cropping the photo to create a more dynamic composition. Second, to remove/replace objects which do not aid or enhance the focal point (the redwood stained planks of the deck were a distraction and did nothing to augment the bucket of apples). And finally, utilize a complimentary color to enhance interest in the red apples. Love the result.


July on Grange Hall Road

August 24, 2016
July on Grange Hall Road - Plein Air - Oil on Canvas Panel - 12 x 24

July on Grange Hall Road – Plein Air – Oil on Canvas Panel – 12 x 24

Last autumn, I did a reference painting from this spot. It was small, 8″ x 16″, and concentrated on the buildings and foreground. Sky was left unfinished. Regretted that I did not complete the piece. Did use it as a basis for a few paintings during the winter.

Decided to return and work one to completion. The challenge on this work was all the summer green. Had to work warm tones in to combat the monotony. Already thinking about getting out here again this autumn when the earth tones of the ripened and harvested fields will dominate the design.


1518 National Avenue

December 4, 2014


1518 National Avenue; Plein Air Oil on Canvas Panel 12 x 16

1518 National Avenue; Plein Air Oil on Canvas Panel 12 x 16

Cool crisp autumn morning. Sun shining brightly. Great day to be out painting. Locked in the shadows early. As happens, the basic drawing of this house, with all of its angles and proportions, took a long time. I returned the next day to finish the work. I was able to invest a fair amount of time adjusting the colors of this subject.

While working on this, one of the neighbors came out to see what was going on. We got to chatting. First about the art, then about Rockford eventually we got on the subject of my first employer in the Chicago area. Turns out that her cousin is one of the people I worked with at Ryerson Steel. Small world, but wouldn’t want to paint it. Or would I???