This painting was painted on May 27, 2009. I painted this 'alla prima' in two hours. I used a transparent varnish wash underpainting, which has watercolor-like properties. Thicker paint was applied on top of the underpainting. Colors used were: transparent red oxide, hansa yellow orange, carbazole violet, cobalt blue, ultramarine blue, cadmium green, cadmium yellow orange, quinacridone red, and titanium white.
It was another gorgeous day at the Baylands in Palo Alto. Only three other painters were there from the California Academy of Painters today. We each stayed about two hours and painted from a different vantage point than usual. I enjoyed painting the variety of colors and temperatures found in the foreground fields. The palette used today included: ultramarine blue, hansa yellow orange, transparent red oxide, cadmium orange, cadmium yellow orange, cadmium green, cobalt blue, carbazole violet, quinacridone red, and titanium white. Not exactly a limited palette!
Today I painted again from the pier at the Palo Alto Baylands. It was crisp and breezy and invigorating. There was a large expanse of grassland in the foreground and background that was filled with amazing colors: sienna, violets, yellow greens, blue greens, silvery greens, russets, yellow oranges, and salmon. I captured many of these colors in the initial varnish wash and only had to place strokes of paint, here and there, in the foreground, as the painting was practically 'done' after the initial wash! The actual colors used were: ultramarine blue, cobalt blue, carbazole violet, cadmium orange, transparent red oxide, hansa yellow orange, cadmium yellow orange, cadmium green, and titanium white.
This is the second of the two plein air oil paintings that sold to a collector in Modesto from Phoebe's Gallery in Capitola, CA. This is also a 6"x8" on mahogany luan panel, using the varnish wash and thicker opaque passages. This painting, too, is mostly cool in temperature.
It was another windy day at the Baylands. Palettes and easels were flying! A limited palette of: transparent red oxide, carbazole violet, fire red, cadmium orange, cadmium yellow medium, cadmium green, and cobalt blue were used. A tiny amount of cadmium yellow light was used to cool the yellow. As I'm painting, the only things I'm thinking about are: what I'm seeing, mixing colors, thinking about values and atmospheric effects, and I hear Jim Smyth in my head saying: "warm the warms, cool the cools, darken the darks, and lighten the lights".
This is one of two plein air California landscape paintings that have sold to a collector in Modesto, California. This painting, along with 10-12 others, was at Phoebe's Gallery in Capitola, California. This is a 6"x8" oil painting on mahogany luan panel. I used the varnish wash and more opaque, impasto passages, as well. The colors are predominantly cool, with some contrasting warmth in the foreground and trees.
This painting was painted recently, on a tranquil day at the Baylands in Palo Alto. I was particularly intrigued with the reflections of the trees in the water. A varnish wash was used here, and more opaque paints added in the second layer. There is variation in transparency versus opacity. The water is mostly transparent varnish wash with some horizontal dry brushing. The texture of the mahogany luan panels coated with three layers of gesso works beautifully with the varnish washes and dry brushing.
It was another spectacular apring day at the Baylands. The group (California Academy of Painters) painted on a pier today and it felt like being on a sailboat! It was exhilirating and it showed in everyone's paintings! This particular painting is a study in foreground and the multicolored hues and variations in temperature of the spring marshland ground. Being there was a meditation on the wonders of nature!
I was inspired yesterday and today by the gigantic cumulus clouds in the Santa Cruz sky. On my drive home from Palo Alto yesterday, the sky was roiling with puffy clouds. I decided to capture some of this feeling in this painting, a further exploration of my "Big Sky" paintings.
This painting: "Blustery Baylands" was chosen by juror and nationally known landscape painter, Kevin McPherson, to be in the 79th Annual Statewide Landscape Exhibition at the Santa Cruz Art League May 30-June 29, 2009 (Reception: June 6, 2009, 3-5 pm). The title for the exhibition is: "Irreplaceable Places: The California Landscape".
I feel that the Baylands in Palo Alto is one of those "irreplaceable places", untouched by development, where nature and the human spirit soars!
I always wanted to be an artist. I love the materials of art: the firmness of a hog bristle brush, the creamy thickness of oil paint, the texture of bark paper, the smell of plaster. I love stepping into the mystery of creation; not knowing what is going to happen and being astonished by the image that emerges. I'm drawn to exploring the reaches of the
imagination and the orphaned off parts of the self. I like to see what bubbles up from the unconscious mind.