Sunday, August 24, 2008
Here's the last of my old pieces. I'll be turning out new ones from this point on. Thanks for your patience everyone.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Part of my Trompe l'Oeil collection, I truly love this little piece. Although my style has changed quite a bit since I painted this, I still enjoy looking at it. This painting was quite small. I remember when I was at LaQuinta Arts Festival in California and they had used this image in the guide book for the festival. A woman came racing into my tent and asked, "Where is this painting; I want to buy it!" When I pointed to it on the wall, she was so disappointed because she had thought it to be an enormous painting. She had a large space to fill and thought that this painting was fill the niche, so to speak. We were both disappointed. But I got a good chuckle out of the experience.
Many of my portraits are done in Pastel because clients like the soft look of it. Warren came to me and asked if I would do his portrait along with his son and dog. It took a lot of photographs to get that dog to hold still. Naturally, I couldn't work from life on this one.
Today is day one of my workshop with the famous David Leffel. Check out my other blog for updates on this experience.
This pastel was one of the first Trompe l'Oeil that I did in the series. It was scooped up by a collector. I still use this vase in many of my still lifes, only because I paint more flowers now, the top is hard to see.
I'm headed to a week long workshop in Fall City this week so I as I won't be able to publish regularly, I thought I'd run a sort of slide show of some previous work. If I get a chance, I'll publish what I'm doing at the workshop and maybe get to post one or two for sale, but this is a week of study. Something I desperately need to do for myself. It will be refreshing to work with other artists instead of in isolation and I'll get to sit at the feet of the Master, David Leffel.
This piece was one from my Trompe l'Oeil collection (pronounced tompe loi - at least I think so. The French would argue with that or so says my friend Jackie - oh, excuse me - Jacquie). I actually painted the frame into the painting. Something I did on a lot of pieces in those days.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
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I guess I'm just in a Rosy sort of way this week. I snapped up this little tea pot on a recent shopping trip. It seemed to go well with the roses. Busy day today. I taught a class in the morning and painted in the afternoon, helped a friend with their blog in the evening and now I'm off to make dinner. Phew!
Saturday, August 16, 2008
I spent the day at the Clallam County Fair today demonstrating and collected a small crowd to watch me finish this piece. The fair is such fun. We're such a small town here that every gathering of people reveals another Norman Rockwell vignette. I would have loved to get some good pictures but I spent the day in the art barn doing this little piece. I love sharing my work so this was great fun. These roses came out just great too! Lots and lots of thick paint. I actually sculpted the flowers out of it. Take a peek at the closeup below.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
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I demonstrated today at the Clallam County Fair. Fun, fun, fun! But very tiring. I had three hours to finish a panting and I just managed to put the finishing touches on this one when my time was up. Phew! Hope you like it. There's lots of generous paint on the flowers and leaves.
Monday, August 11, 2008
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It's been a pretty busy week here at the Spar homestead. Our local fair starts this week and I've entered some work in it. But mostly it's just been hectic getting all the paperwork and peliminary stuff for my upcoming show ready. I know I should be ready for this by now, but it just seems to be taking forever to do it all. I'll be soooo glad when it's all behind me. Honestly, some days just looking for a phone number can take all day!
Here's a piece I put together on the fly today. Hope you like it.
Saturday, August 09, 2008
This piece was part of a recent commission. It was fun to do because when placed next to it's mate, they form a complete painting. I enjoy paintng lace and so I had double to fun. There's a small ladybug or two in this piece just as in it's mate.
I've been busy the last two days readying pieces for my show - lots still to do. I've varnished and framed and still have prints to run and photos to take. It's the back end of this business that takes so much time...computer and data entry, record keeping and paperwork. But hopefully soon I'll be clear to do some more actual painting!
The last week of September I'll be taking a workshop from David Leffel, one of today's great painters and a modern master. I'm completely overwhelmed just getting ready for this event and look forward to sharing my experiences and the work I do at it with you.
Thursday, August 07, 2008
I should have named this "Just for Fun" because that's what it was. I just needed some of the glorious sunshine from outside in my little studio today. I was in a generous mood with the paint too! See the closeup below. Enjoy!
Wednesday, August 06, 2008
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I recently spent a weekend in Olympia, WA for, of all things, the senior Olympics. I payed racquetball! While I won't be on the next box of Wheaties (to borrow a phrase from a customer), I did enjoy myself immensely. However, the best part of the trip were several forays into antique and consignment shops to look for new props for my paintings. I picked this little vase up. It was just big enough to hold a few small blooms and these incredible berries that grow in abundance all around Washington. No idea what they are and they're not edible, but they have the most luscious color. They set the vase of nicely and I decided to feature it set back with a low horizon. I like this composition. I've used it many times before and there's just something about the way the light on the table leads your eye up to the vase and flowers that I like. Anyway, the vase has a wonderful shape and emerges just beautifully from the shadows around it. Sigh. I'm a hopeless romantic.
Monday, August 04, 2008
A recent foray to an antique shop brought me this fabulous Asian Jar. It's over 100 years old and the symbol on the front is for "Happiness" - or so I'm told. I did this small piece as a study for a larger one that is going in my upcoming show. I'm quite happy with the way it came out, but the photo doesn't do it justice. It's still quite wet and no matter how I set the lights, I got glare :-(. But it's really quite lovely and has great detail and depth for a small piece. Check out the detail shot below.
This painting was done on gallery wrap canvas with carefully painted edges so there is no need to frame - it's ready to hang as is. Please note that all my work is now being shipped in boxes.
Friday, August 01, 2008
This is the left side of a diptych I completed for a commission. I really enjoyed painting the lace on this and it's mate (to be viewed tomorrow). Painting lace or fabric is not really as hard as it's perceived. You need a lite touch and a good command of shadows. The rest is just feeling out the pattern and repeating it. There's actually a tiny ladybug on one of the leaves which was requested by the customer. Now THAT was hard!
I'm still finishing up some paintings for my show but will be back to selling by the end of the week - hopefully. Stay tuned. - Oh...a note to my friend, Rosa. Rosa...I can't believe I actually signed up for that workshop!!! David Leffel...oh still my beating heart! Thanks girlfriend. I owe you.