You are currently browsing the monthly archive for January 2009.

While I miss painting outside and the thrill of capturing light and color on-site, there are some niceties with painting in my studio. As I’ve been working on the painting of the Carroll Gardens street scene (see Works in Progress, and below), I’ve been able to play around with color combinations at my leisure – which is helpful because the church’s stone facade in the late afternoon light has an incredible variety of hues…

church6

And, I’ve finally started a snowy scene of Prospect Park…  I’ll be posting updates in Works in Progress. It was a lot of fun to recreate the shimmery snow as the sun came out. It took some playing around with surprising color combinations to get the shadows and sunlit areas right. A little more refinement to be done here. I’ve gotten a couple of references to Monet by studio-mates and neighbors who’ve seen this painting so far! Sounds good to me!!

snow1Thanks to the blogger at http://ayearinthepark.typepad.com, I remain inspired by Prospect Park and its excellent masquerade as a country escape (although the classic street lamp is a dead give-away).

I finally gave in and bought myself a new toy – a pochade box, aka a tiny all-in-one painting kit that can hold a 9″x12″ canvas or panels, brushes, paints, palette, solvents & medium (but not paper towels), and unfolds into a mini-easel.  A painter’s version of a laptop! I can’t wait to take it out for a spin; perhaps at a local coffee shop or ….?
108-0888_img

Meanwhile, I dropped off my painting, “Lehigh Valley at Red Hook,” at the Salmagundi Club this afternoon for the upcoming “Contemporary New York Harbor” exhibition, Jan 26 – Feb 13.

lehigh-valley-at-red-hook-500

Don’t miss this show which will be in conjunction with another big exhibition, the “History Panorama: Celebrating the 400th Anniversary of the Dutch Discovery of Manhattan“. The Salmagundi is at 47 Fifth Avenue @12th Street, NYC. For more info, visit my website’s “News” page.

I sent out an email newsletter today; if you’d like to be on my email list, please click on the link to the left, “Join my mail list”.  I’ve also updated the “Works in Progress” page on this blog to show you how I work on paintings: the latest will be the view from my studio and the commissioned view that I mentioned below. Most people don’t see this part of the process, except my studiomates. A couple of days ago,  I even managed to get out into snowy Prospect Park to take some photos (I wished I had a sled). Finally, I may get to paint a snowy scene.

church1

st-pauls-corner-sketch
I did this oil sketch on gessoed watercolor paper to show a client what their commissioned painting might look like, in terms of a composition. It’s a view of St Paul’s Episcopal Church at the corner of  Clinton and President Streets. It was also an excellent exercise for determining the shape of canvas to recommend (square), and I got a feel for how the light hits the asymmetrical, stone building. I had fun playing with the warm tones vs. the cool, shadowed ones.  I’ll post my work on it in “Works in Progress”, so stay tuned!

livingrm8
I made a lot of progress today on this painting I started a few days ago.  I’d had this cozy scene in mind for a long time. I’m adding it to what’s turning into a series of small paintings (this is #3) about corners of rooms, where light plays a strong role in the feeling of the space.  In this painting, I wanted to capture the cozy, warm atmosphere of a late afternoon and a comfy armchair.  Only thing missing is a fireplace! It was nice to play with the warm reds and oranges  contrasting against the cool greens and blue-ish reds, especially on a day when it was 10 degrees F when I headed to my studio.  I think it’s almost finished; I’ll decide later after it’s dried. Colors can “sink” while drying. Go to “Works in Progress” to see the how I developed this painting.

livingrm3I started a new painting yesterday afternoon, which is always the most exciting part of the process. So much possibility, the excitement of laying down the first brave colors. I worked some more on it today, before heading out to an opening reception for an exhibition at the Salmagundi Club.  I’ve added it to Works in Progress.  The painting of the view from my studio is still too wet to go back into it, especially where there’s a lot of white, e.g. in the clouds. Titanium White is one of the slowest drying colors.

As a painter who prefers to be outside painting from life on site, late fall is always a tough time. Now it’s been two months of winter, and I’ve adjusted to my winter rhythm. It’s actually a lot easier in some ways to work in my studio. I don’t have to unpack and pack for every painting session (my car trunk is nearly empty and the baby stroller I use to haul around my so-called portable Julian easel is pushed into space next to my storage shelves), I can bring food that can be heated in my old microwave, and best of all I have more social interaction with my studio-mates (including neighbor’s dog Mingus). I paint a little more slowly and don’t worry as much about what time of day a painting depicts. I can use my large glass palette and muck around with larger quantities of paint.  I work from photos of views that I’ve taken the last season. I just prepped three new canvases today, meaning I toned them with diluted paint so that I won’t be starting with a stark white canvas.

easel-and-prepped-canvases

my-palette

mingus-and-canvases1

This 22″x28″ painting is of a historic 10-story building on Madison Avenue near Grand Central Station. Unfortunately because of high rise buildings built around it, the sun rarely hits it. Let’s just say that I used artistic license (couldn’t say “historic perspective” because of the yellow cab and SUV) to have sunlight drenching the Madison Avenue side of the building! I worked from several photos that I took, as well as archival photos and architectural drawings that were made available to me. Can anyone guess what business is in this building?

brooks-brothers-small

Today I sold another painting, “Sunset from 9th Street Bridge” that was in the GCC benefit exhibition last month. Who would have thought with this economy?…” in the face of all the fiscal gloom and doom around us”, said John Muir, a board member of GCC and a collector of my paintings. The buyer was thrilled to know that 40% will go towards GCC’s efforts (and it’s tax-deductible!). There is hope; let’s be optimistic!

sunset-from-9th-st-bridge-2007

Meanwhile, I’m re-grouping in the studio. I’ll be posting works in progress soon.

It was wonderful to sell 3 small paintings during the Gowanus Canal Conservancy’s holiday show and sale last month. I also got another commission from it. I am grateful for the sales and happy to be able to have 40% of the sales go to the GCC. gowanus-canal-408

Share this blog

Bookmark and Share

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 2 other followers

Archives

%d bloggers like this: