Sunday, August 14, 2016

Sounding like a broken record.

          But working through it! You've got to!  I can't tell how long it will take to get the groove back but it's important to NOT make the efforts seem insurmountable.  For now I've been doing smaller gouache works.  I picked up some more clay.  I use Low Fire White Earthenware.  So I have been working 3D with great satisfaction.  I have been taking a little time to go back to reading about other artists, contemporary and historical, to glean any inspiration I can whether working processes or whatever!
         You can always find some great clips on Facebook.  I read a short article on Alex Katz.  Watched a You Tube on Ingres.  Read another one on Frank Auerbach. I was wondering, "have I looked at too much art that has caused this block that I have to work through daily waiting." Nothing to do but put one foot in front of the other and go do another load of laundry!  Some samples below.   



Saturday, June 4, 2016

Coming up!

Coming up this July 2nd and 3rd.  I will be teaching a 2 day workshop in Laguna Beach, CA.  One of my favorite places on this planet!  I am going to take the class and we are going to walk right out on to the beach from our starting point of the Vanessa Rothe Gallery.  I hope to show the students how I capture those "moving targets".  To add to this  I will be participating in a show the Friday evening of the 2nd.  I hope you can join us! 

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Always the Figure.

There are so many subjects for me but yes, it's mostly the figure.  So I have to say I've been stuck for awhile.  I do think teaching has interfered with needed growth but it is what it is.  I have needed to help more with the income with a loved one ill and insurance not covering many of the doctors.  And why don't these doctors accept the Affordable Care Act Insurance.  I hope for improvements.  We were forced into our plan.  But in the meantime and on a brighter note I have found solutions!  I do a lot of work in gouache.  AND my husband, Ray Roberts, and I have renewed our attendance to the Open Studio Sessions!  We feel like we have a new lease on life.  Painting the figure from life, there's nothing like it for us.  Just free.  A few examples follow.  Hey!  Thanks for following me!

These were quick 2 minute poses.  I use gouache and a sable round.  This is on a 11" x 14" sheet of Strathmore acid free paper.  I take a lot of pads so I can go from one to the next and the paint is dry by the time I come back to the original pad.

What fun poses! 8" x 10" Gouache

Drawing a lot from life, I can't say enough great things about it.  The lawn bowling club in Laguna Beach is great.  They actually stand still for a minute or two.  And they generally come back to these stances as they go back and forth.  9" x 12" Gouache

There are times when I am not crazy about the pose the group has chosen so I paint the other artists.  Really fun.

Played with color on this one.  This was a 20 minute pose.  The page is 11" x 14" so not big.

And when there's not a figure to paint I find something at the house or on the road.  Couldn't resist the beautiful day outside it was and I love my yard tools.
8" x 10" Gouache

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

It's been Awhile!

I have been teaching a lot this year.  Very grateful!  One thing for sure, students love demos.  I love a demo.  (A short one!)  I get really anxious to paint once I feel the gist of the goal.  And I know I love to somehow see what a painter is thinking.  The thought process is so important.  And those who have taken a workshop from me know I like to hand out "tools".  I avoid formulas and try to help students  find and use different segways into a painting.  Here's some of my thought process illustrated. After we choose what to paint we
 start with just a few exercises of first simply separating light from shadow.  Continually asking ourselves, "what's bathed in the light and what isn't"?  Now that's when you have a strong light source.  Gray days are a different animal.  That's another conversation.  The second and third examples are refining values and their relationships.  Then I interpret it in color.  All doing this "at once". So in a "nutshell",  I choose my subject and ask myself "what's my light"?  And at the same time I am asking myself "what's my darkest dark (value) and what's my lightest light (value)"?  Then I may see color first but I always apply the other qualities of color.  Like chroma, temperature, value, local color. 

We will also do the same exercise "separating light from shadow" when we have a figure model.  I do the same thing with a landscape.  Essentially I am trying to paint the light of the moment keeping the contrast between the shadows and the illuminated areas.  I try to avoid a lot of contrast within the shadow and within the form bathed in light.  Makes for solid reading paintings especially from a distance.  

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Room for Everyone. Period.

Yes, I teach a lot.  I love it.  It is my social life.  Once the kids left home I found that my entire social life had existed because of their high school sporting and social events. That ended with them leaving the nest.  So I increased my schedule over the past few years and I want to share some thoughts.  The enrollment of my workshops has increased and I am so grateful! I see such desire to learn from the people that choose to study with me.  I LOVE it.  They are so earnest.  And I have been told I am a natural born teacher.  
Now to my thoughts and concerns.  I believe there is a small group that may feel I teach too much,  that it hurts my personal work.  And that I may be contributing to the rise of the amount of artists entering the market.  I have no love for "Art Snobs".  First, I don't teach formulas.  The information I teach has been available to anyone for centuries.  And whether a person started their career early or late should not be a concern.  I teach the fundamentals and encourage the student to explore their potential in order to be able to "say what they want to say".  There is no need to worry about the "wannabes"!  That is what they will remain.  It's those artists that put in the time, the 10,000 or 7,000 or whatever amount of hours it takes to become oneself.  And I firmly believe that if one searches with earnest and with quality mileage they will emerge with their own vision and there will always be room for those artists.  Whether it's two or two million.  

I teach that you may manipulate the values.  I teach you may use a full palette or a limited one.  I teach that you may vary the surface quality.  I teach that paying attention to "edges" can create it's own statement.  I teach how to paint form.  I teach simple proportions of the figure.  I teach how to draw.  I can teach how to capture a more representational version of an image or one that has a more personal vision.  I hope that I also teach how to think and how to see.  But I cannot teach someone "what to say".  That only comes through ones personal journey through quality "blood, sweat and tears".  There is room for you and me.  

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Keep reminding myself.

I have to keep reminding myself to keep it simple!!  What's the deal!  Ok already!  How many times do I have to repeat it.  So back to value thumbnails to make things clear again.  I am going to do my best to "say the rest" with color changes in the large value shapes and not  more value changes.  Here's a start.  We will see what happens.  I always try to finish a work from 10 to 20ft back.  I go for that "immediate read". 

Monday, August 4, 2014

I Showed Up for Work.

There's a saying.  "Inspiration is for amateurs,  professionals show up for work".  Well, after our workshop here I was tired an felt uninspired.  I tried to paint the landscape and struggled.  It really takes the wind out of my sails.  I said to myself to get out to the studio, show up for work.  So I did.  The goal was to do just that.  I painted from images on my computer and made sure there was a figure in there.  Here are the results.  I would still like to be more "David Park-esque" or " Elmer Bischoff-esque" .  But at least I showed up for work.

"Ali at the Table"
10" x 8"
Gouache on Illustration board

"Plein Aire Painters"
8" x 10"
Gouache on Illustration Board

"Model holding Fruit"
10" x 8"
Gouache on Illustration Board

"Reading on the Beach"
8" x 10"
Gouache on Illustration Board