Monday, September 28, 2015

Edges of Autumn

24" x 36" Oil on Panel
Went out for another big painting a week or two ago. Seven hours or so set up by a dusty road, eating that dust as it was kicked up by passing cars. That's not unusual. At least there weren't too many passing cars. The weather was absolutely wonderful. Clouds stayed close to the horizon while directly overhead the sky was clear, blue, and wide open. Willow trees showed traces of gold around their edges. Some sandhill cranes landed in a meadow off to my right and spent a few hours there before taking flight again, passing directly above me as they left. All in all, a good day to paint!

Monday, September 21, 2015

End of Summer at Mt. Olympus

16" x 20" Oil on Canvas Panel.
This was painted from just outside a golf course in Salt Lake City, Utah. I was set up between the sidewalk and fence near one of the fairways. There were a couple very large trees between where the golfers were teeing off and where I was painting, so even though some golf balls landed fairly close, I was shielded from any direct fire. One golf ball actually ricocheted off one of the trees and bounced across the street into someone's front yard. Happily, my painting, my car, and myself ended the day unharmed by any flying little white dimpled projectiles.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Two More from the Portrait Sessions

10" x 14" Charcoal on Gray Paper.
Here's two more charcoal drawings from the Thursday night live portrait sessions in Pleasant Grove, Utah. The first one was done a couple weeks or so ago. It was drawn using my usual method for gray paper; charcoal pencil for the darks and "charcoal white" for the lights. 

9" x 12" Charcoal on Paper
The next drawing is the most recent. It's evidence that when you show up late for a drawing session, you end up doing a profile. That's because the other painters showed up on time and took all the good spots in front of the model, leaving only the side views for the tardy. 

This drawing was made by toning white paper with stick charcoal, then rendering the darks with a charcoal pencil and lifting out the lights with a kneaded eraser. "Charcoal white" was used only in highlights where the eraser couldn't get all of the charcoal out of the paper's grain.

For more about drawing sessions, go to "Labels" on the side bar and click on "sketching" or "drawing."

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Pictures from Spring City 2015

9" x 12" Oil on Panel
The Spring City Plein Air competition was last week. Here are some of my pictures from that event. Shown above is the first painting I did for the show. The view is looking west toward the little town of Wales, in central Utah.

The second photo shows the painting in the pochade box, with the subject of the painting in the background. You can see how the shape of the trees was changed in the painting. I liked where the trees were, but that tree sticking up on the right wasn't going to work in this composition, so it had to go!

9" x 12" Oil on Panel
The first painting I made on the second day didn't turn out, so I scraped and wiped it and reused the panel the next day. In the mean time I was able to complete another painting on the second day. That painting is shown above.

Here's the painting still in the box. The scene is out of view to the left of the photo. The box is turned to avoid bright glare for the sake of the photo.

9" x 12" Oil on Panel
It was very windy on the third day, making plein air painting even more challenging. The panel that was wiped the day before was used for my last painting of the trip, shown above.

Part of my trip was spent camped in a pasture at 7500 feet in the San Pitch Mountains west of Sanpete Valley. The accommodations were spacious, the scenery was great, and the price was right - free! Finding a suitably level spot in the meadow that was free of cow pies took a little hunting, but it worked out fine. A good tent, two stacked self inflating air mattresses, a pillow and a wool blanket, plus a fleece sleeping bag liner, made for a comfortable night's sleep. I was awakened three or four times during the night when small groups of lowing cattle passed the camp. What cows have to moo about at four in the morning, I don't know, but moo they did.

The Spring City plein air competition might be my last one for this year, but I always look forward to more outdoor painting, whether it's with an event or out on my own!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

New Painting, and an Upcoming Event!

24" x 36" Oil on Panel
As promised, here's the painting mentioned in my last post, finally photographed and uploaded! The unique shapes of trees are things I really like, whether to paint or just enjoy when I'm out for a walk. The trees pictured in this painting are willows.

I'm planning on painting for the next few days in Spring City, Utah, for the annual Spring City plein air painting event! Sanpete Valley is a wonderful place to paint. This event always attracts lots of high-caliber painters from around the region and is always a fun event. I've been attending this one for a few years now. For more information you can click on their logo (shown above), or you can go to: