Thursday, May 27, 2010

More Pen and Ink

Last Painting Class at RAC

These are pen and ink studies I did while teaching at the Richmond Art Center. Those are the students. I like drawing people the most when they are not posing. I used a drawing metal nib, a watercolor brush and india ink on 140 lb Cotman paper. The paper was roughly 8 x 10."

Monday, May 10, 2010

Sausal Creek Abstraction

I returned this Saturday determined to redo Sausal Creek in a different manner, with oils and a 20 x 20" canvas. I wasn't, however, planning to do an abstraction, it just came out like this. I begin all paintings with the spatula, and this one did not want me to pick up a brush. I meant to continue working on it, but after about an hour it was clear nothing else needed to be done. I didn't feel good either, so I left. When I came home I looked at it and did not feel revisions were necessary.

Monday, May 03, 2010

Sausal Creek, Dimond Park, Oakland

This creek runs through the middle of Dimond Canyon and in some parts the children and adult visitors can access it. I sat on the edge of a retaining wall bordering the creek to paint this 20 x 16" acrylic. It was a challenge not because of the many children who stopped to give me compliments, but because I was sitting in full sun. The glare was hard to avoid. The sun dried up my acrylics in half the time it normally takes them to dry. On top of all of this, my eyes had to adjust to the relative darkness of this green tunnel, then back to the canvas's glare. This painting will never do justice to the colors I saw reflected in the water, but it is a good first attempt.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

I Love "Ugly" Stuff

This trawler was getting maintenance at an Alameda boat yard. It was enormous! I arrived late because of traffic and painted this 18 x 24" acrylic for two hours before returning home and finishing from memory.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Working Small

In the end there is something to be said for small, intimate paintings. This one (11 x 14") was done by the morning light of a window, while teaching Basic Oil Painting at the Richmond Art Center.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Sinking In The Sand

The first half of this 18 x 24" oil was done on location in Alameda, CA. It was a beautiful sunny afternoon and the waterfront had many visitors. It took me a long time to find a spot. I was interested in the pampas grass mounds I saw right after getting off the parking lot, but they were so big they covered the entire view. The upper part of the beach was flat so there was no vantage point from which to view them. I gave up and dragged my cart to the sand, where my chair sank. The tide came in pretty quickly, so I only labored for 90 minutes. I finished it at home a week later, from memory.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

21st Century Still Life least in subject matter! This oil I started and finished at home, to make myself feel better after having a bad week. The canvas is slightly larger than the previous one, 16 x 12."

19th Century Still Life

This 11 x 14" oil on canvas was something I made while teaching the Beginning Oil class as a way to model some of the skills and approaches. I revised it at home.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Edna and the Cushion

This is a model I had not painted at the Firehouse before. I used oil on a 20 x 20" canvas.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Painting Difficult Surfaces

That was the name of the demo that I gave for the oil painting class. I was saying that if you take the trouble to understand what you are painting (I mean structurally), then this can help you achieve likenesses. So I tackled this trumpet, which I bought from a middle school boy in Antioch, and the flower vase, which was a bit dirty. The canvas was a bit big (22 x 28") for a demo but for me, the bigger the canvas, the easier it becomes to paint. Small spaces force you to have too much control and this is harder, movement-wise.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Rainy Days and Daffodils

These flowers were a gift. My mom likes daffodils and it was raining. I had a lot of paint left over on my palette after working on a landscape, so I took a 16 x 20" canvas and spent a couple of hours painting these with acrylic.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Latino Vanitas

This 16 x 20" acrylic was done during class. I was trying to model the depiction of challenging surfaces in this medium, and arranged a still life in the vanitas tradition. Only that this time I used african and european instruments to symbolize my culture.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Abstraction at the Richmond Art Center

I am teaching a beginning painting class at the Richmond Art Center. Hopefully I have organized an environment that lets us sample different ways to engage in the discipline, which is why we based our abstraction in the observation of an object. I modeled this with a small (16 x 20") painting, mostly because I did not want to be looking over anyone's shoulder. I am also trying to cultivate self-awareness as we paint, so I took note of my ow process. It took a long time to convince myself not to go on my "automatic" mode, which is quite representational. But with patience it slowly emerged. I was pleased I was able to play with the essential elements of this still life, and happier still that I left my internal editor in the dust.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

My Friend Jose

He was on a hammock and warned me I only had 30 minutes. It is not a good likeness, but it is a great watercolor. On Lanaquarelle block, 140 lb, 12 x 16"