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Monday, February 28, 2011


(Applause)   watercolor   9.25 x 13.25  
is an understatement.  These cupcakes surpass anything I have ever tried.  Our class assignment:  bakery in reds, pinks, chocolates and whites to celebrate the love day.  I stopped in to Heavenly Cupcakes to buy a few support materials.  I couldn't believe the buzz, the activity!  These really are, then paint, then buy again.

And the oscar goes to....all three.


Friday, February 25, 2011

The Pinecone...

Lone Cone   Watercolor   7 x 7
is simple, yet many organic things.  And I believe that it presents a most interesting drawing and painting problem.  The ins-outs, the tos and the fros, of light falling on it can teach us so much about the way light affects form.  In our watercolor class, we undertook this problem, knowing that the values need to be upped  to the light end of the scale.  While cones don't really have white on each tip, we understand that to be easily read visually, these changes would keep the cone sublime, without becoming a dark brown blob.  Carol's work is indeed sublime....this is her second effort at this gentle cone.  The gentle washes on each side help the cone to recede and to read in a three-dimensional way.  It has volume.  Her first attempt became too dark too quickly.  She corrected and reworked.  Her efforts were rewarded.  My own version is more drenched in color.

Monday, February 21, 2011

We're Painting the Roses Red....

Confection   watercolor   8 x 5.5
sang the cards in "Alice in Wonderland".  I am singing it too...."Confection" is my response to our valentine challenge.  I guess I am somewhat satisfied with the work.  I took it as far as it would go.  Years ago while working in the greeting card industry, I painted more roses that I ever would want in a lifetime.  They are difficult, not only in their curling twisting forms, but in that deep red color which does not reflect light very well.  Actually, not at all with the overhead lighting at the art center.  Beginning painters often over-paint the rose, in an attempt to achieve that rich redness.  Permanent rose, Rose Madder and Opera Pink are all pink-oriented.  Alizarin tends toward brown.  But, once again, I dipped into it in order to achieve a darkness which the other hues could not provide.  I left a white which was gradually washed over in the final stages.

My regret with this work is its scale.  Too many things on the paper for its size.  I was using a odd-sized leftover.  Painting freely with one or two forms in the composition works.  Too many forms inhibit that freedom.

Note to myself:  on Valentine paintings, stay out of the Alizarin.  And, oh yeah, bring a bigger sheet of paper.

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Bundled   watercolor   14 x 10
is pronounced o-maj'  in French.  My friend Tom painted an homage to Dean Mitchell after viewing his exhibition in Canton.  My homage today is to my friend Mo.  She has studied with me for years.  She is an open-minded and fair individual.  She treats everyone with kindness.  She is enthusiastic.  We are both perpetual students.  And....she lives an artful and considerate life in every way.  Her portrait of me is just wonderful.  Simply rendered.  Texture has been liberally suggested.  Energetic.  And, as it seems to me, she only represented the good parts....of course, my hair and mouth were covered.  (definitely a good thing)

Mo was not at class last week.  Her wonderful dog Farina, who is also a member of our class, suffered an accident at a dog park and had to have surgery on Monday.  Farina's leg was dislocated as she leaped to get away from some other large dogs.  And the very sad thing is that not one individual stepped up to help her, or to acknowledge their part in the accident.  I would have to say that this is anti-Mo behavior.

Which is exactly why I like her so much.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Fallow   watercolor/mixed   25.75 x 11
It seems that there are purists in almost every detail of habitation these days. All cotton.  Strictly organic.  And transparent watercolor.  I'm afraid that I am a mutt.  Mixing it up in every way possible...especially if that seems to be the way to achieve what I am after.  "Fallow" started off as a watercolor for our class challenge of a vertical landscape.  After simplifying and reestablishing countless times, I introduced gouache....then watercolor pencils....then pastel...more watercolor....then a Lyra watersoluable grafit-kreide.  This work is about as far away from my usual as can be.  And, yet, the feel of this work is exactly the image inhabiting my brain ever since that Sunday walk down my road, the day that I needed to procure an image for the upcoming class.  Feel.  Important.

Yet, I feel a bit of guilt that I was unable to resolve the problem with pure watercolor.  Oh well.  I might just drown my sorrows with a slice of  smoked Gouda....or possibly Velveeta.

Monday, February 14, 2011

LOVE Day...

Chocolate Cupcake   watercolor   7 x 5
is here.  Our small festive celebrations punctuate our lives with little spurts of joy.  It seems that we, in our culture, are appreciating the visual quality of food as never before.  We are lucky to enjoy a standard of living that allows for this.  As we fill our homes with art...meaningful art...let's not forget to include the beauty of is a huge part of our lives and provides us with a venue for artful living, no matter what our daily endeavors.

Oh yes....a cupcake with no calories!