Iris in an Aqua Cup and Bonus Pear Painting

Iris in an Aqua Cup, oil on unstretched canvas, 12x9"

Iris in an Aqua Cup, oil on unstretched canvas, 12×9″

I was thrilled when my irises bloomed again this year after failing to do so last spring. I love the warm light I was able to capture in this painting. It went through a lot of changes before I finally settled on this version. (Available on my DPW gallery here.)

Bonus Pear, oil on Gessobord, 6x6"

Bonus Pear, oil on Gessobord, 6×6″

This was just a little love letter to a pretty pear. (Available on my DPW Gallery here.)

Hanging Lemons: Two paintings and a Candy Jar

Lemon, Candy Dish and a Cosmetic Swab, oil painting on unstretched canvas, 16x12”

Lemon, Candy Dish and a Cosmetic Swab, oil painting on unstretched canvas, 16×12”

I had so much fun painting this hanging lemon and grandma’s candy dish and the previous hanging lemon oil study below. Also scroll down for the fun Procreate color studies and sketches and WIP photos.  I know the candy dish is wonky but I decided I like the wavy distortions.  I’m not sure which I prefer more, the iPad color study or this painting (which is available at my DPW gallery here.)

I’d love to know which you prefer: iPad painting or oil painting? And here is the little hanging lemon painting I did earlier:

Hanging Lemons, oil on Gessobord panel, 7x5"

Hanging Lemons, oil on Gessobord panel, 7×5″

This little painting came first; a fun experiment in composition and hanging things from the wall to paint. The painting is available at my DPW gallery here.

Original color study sketch in Procreate on the iPad. Print is available upon request.

Original color study sketch in Procreate on the iPad. Print is available upon request.

In some ways I prefer this chunky quick study more than the oil painting. I am working towards finding a way to apply what I’ve been doing on the iPad to my oil paintings. Next up on the blog are a series of more of these iPad sketches. Read More

Irises on White Cloth

Irises on a White Cloth, oil on panel, 14x11" Available here.

Irises on a White Cloth, oil on panel, 14×11″ Available here.

I painted these from life, but first did a value sketch in Procreate to help me stay within the range of values I chose for the painting. That’s a concept I’ve been pondering: that you can design whatever value range you want for a painting, from mostly light to mostly dark, and then mix the paint colors accordingly. I printed out the Procreate value sketch and put it on my easel for reference as you can see in the work in progress photos below.

Queen Pomegranate and Princess Persimmon (Painted Thrice)

Queen Pom and Princess Persimmon, oil on panel, 8x8"

Queen Pom and Princess Persimmon, oil on panel, 8×8 inches (Available to purchase here)

There was something regal about these two, hence the name, despite the queen sitting in a soap dish, not a throne. I started out thinking “values and planes” and then, as usual, got seduced by color and detail. I did manage to keep some of the planes I saw in this pomegranate (which was becoming more faceted as it became more elderly, having been painted a few times over the past couple weeks). However, I’m not sure the painting actually benefitted from leaving the planes (or so many of them) visible.

Below is a photo of the set up and below that the two previous pom/persimmon paintings that were a nice warmup and introduction to the subject, though perhaps not terribly successful in terms of paint application, composition and/or drawing.

Photo of setup for Queen Pom

Photo of setup for Queen Pom

4 Poms on a Black Plate, oil on panel, 8x10"

4 Poms on a Black Plate, oil on panel, 8×10″

3 Poms on a Black Box, oil on panel, 8x10"

3 Poms on a Black Box, oil on panel, 8×10″

3 Poms on a Box painting on easel and still life set up

3 Poms on a Box painting on easel and still life set up

Oil Portrait of Baby Toa; Painting with Joy and Freedom

Portrait of Baby Toa, oil on linen panel, 10x8 inches

Portrait of Baby Toa, oil on linen panel, 10×8 inches

I really enjoyed making this painting of my friend’s grandson Toa. The biggest challenge was working from a cellphone photo taken in a carseat in the dark where his skin looked dark and bright orange. Fortunately I was able to see some other snapshots with better skin color.

I’ve been taking a new approach to painting; focusing on the joy of creating and letting go of the internal “committee” that demands perfection. I have accepted that my work will never be perfect and that perfect art bores me anyway. A bit of wonkiness, even in a portrait, is ok with me, if I feel I have captured the spark of the subject. I’m painting for myself; if it pleases someone else too that’s a bonus, but not at all a requirement. Giving myself this freedom has completely changed my life.

Below are my initial sketches, a picture of the setup with the photo, and an early stage in the painting.

Grandma’s Laundry Sprinkler and Apples

Grandma’s Laundry Sprinkler and Apples, oil on canvas, 9x12 inches

Grandma’s Laundry Sprinkler and Apples, oil on canvas, 9×12 inches. Click Image for Purchase Info

My grandmother ironed everything including underwear and sheets! Doing laundry was a major project. My mother bought her a dryer but she refused to use it, preferring to hang everything out to dry on the backyard clothesline. She dragged her wheeled canvas laundry cart with a big pocket for wooden clothespins (see sketch below) down the stairs and then pinned everything up to dry in the sun.

Before she ironed she sprinkled the stiff, dry laundry with water, using her special sprinkler cork (in painting above) stuffed in a bottle. Steam irons made laundry sprinklers obsolete but I wanted to honor this artifact of my grandma’s life in a painting. A few years ago I also made this sketch of her hanging laundry (below). I always loved playing with the clothespins and hanging out with my sweet grandma on laundry day.

Grandma hanging laundry with her laundry cart, Digital sketch.

Grandma hanging laundry with her laundry cart, Digital sketch.

Here is a photo of the setup (which I painted from life, not from the photo).

Photo of still life set up

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