A Single Rose

This is a simple study that I painted on a panel.  I often use small panels to try out techniques or colors.   I like to work on small canvasses.  I think that a common mistake  for many students is to paint over life size without a good reason.

The darks   in this painting are applied very thinly.

Tulips, grapes and Pears

Every year (except this one) I have bought tulips and planted them in large pots so I could have painting material in the spring. This past October was so warm  and dry that I knew it would be hard to grow  tulips because they require at least 6 weeks of cold weather to bloom.  So I dug out my trusty artificial tulips and found a few photographs of tulips to paint this picture.

Here’s a technique tip:  You can remove acrylic varnish with alcohol but you can make corrections on top of Liquitex gloss or matt medium varnish.  Remember to reseal the entire painting with varnish when you have finished.

Sunflowers #3 in the Series

All of the sunflower paintings in this series were done with acrylics.I think that the most important thing to remember when starting a painting is the location of the light source.  Where is the light coming from?  Most of the time I like for the light to come from the left side.  The second question I always ask myself is “Where is the focal point?”  It is better to have only one focal point, and to emphasize one plane:  The foreground, or the middle, or the background.

Sunflowers

I love to paint sunflowers.  I have done a number of pictures of sunflowers and never seem to tire of painting them.

I learned a neat thing from Homer Allbritten, an artist friend now deceased, about using a “mother” color.  He said to add a single color in all mixtures throughout the painting and this would easily achieve a unifying effect.  I don’t think I always do this, but I am more pleased with my paintings when I remember to do so!

Tulips, Pears and a Pitcher

More artificial flowers used as models.  The pears are also in my inventory of artificial fruits and flowers.
Richard Schmid, an artist I admire, said that a painter should ask herself several questions:  Which side of the subject is lightest?  Is the color clear and sharp or diffused? Where are the lost edges?  What are the most powerful colors?  Where is the thick paint going?  Where is the thin paint going?

White roses, cups and vase

white-roses-cups-vase-11-6-16

This was my first try in painting a decorated vase!  This painting is done in acrylics.  The roses are actually artificial flowers I bought at Michaels.  I have quite a collection of artificial flowers that I use as stand-ins for the real thing.  This enables me to paint flowers in the worst of winter weather.  The artificial flowers made now are stunning!

I painted the Chinese flower vase first with white mixed with raw sienna, and carefully did the shading.  Only after I was satisfied with the form did I paint the Chinese design on top.

Zinnias in a water bowl

I did another study of zinnias from my front yard but this time I tried to show the stems in water.  This was hard to do, and I looked at a number of other artists’ paintings to see how they did it.  I think that one of the tricks I learned was to paint the surface of the water in the bowl first as an ellipse, then to paint the water in the bowl and the glass reflections.  After this, I painted the stems stopping them on the water surface.  Next, under the ellipse I painted the rest of the stems.  The water does distort the placement of the bottom stems some.

Old tree by creek in January snow

This painting was actually started several years ago and I finally got it finished!  Sometimes it takes me a while to figure out what I did wrong and make the corrections.

One of the artists I most admire is Richard Schmid.  In his book Alla Prima,  he said that muddy color always turns out to be a color that is an inappropriate temperature– a too cool color within a warm shadow.