Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Onion Study


Not having a great idea for a painting a few days ago, I did this onion study.  I think it is always beneficial to concentrate on just one object for a study.  In this case, I wanted to capture the different layers of the onion, to show their thinness and shine.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Last of the Birthday Wine

My husband and I love wine from Burgundy in France, and he is always asking me to do a  "wine painting".  He celebrated a birthday a couple of weeks ago, we had this bottle for dinner, so here is his wine painting!

The painting challenge for me was what to do about the lettering on the label.  As it is the focal point of the painting,  I wanted it to be legible enough to recognize as the wine we had, but yet not so perfect that the lettering took over.  This is not easy to do, and I'm not sure my efforts were totally successful.  Maybe that's why I don't do more paintings featuring wine bottles.  Guess I'll have to practice by doing some more.


Tuesday, August 23, 2011


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This is the first time I have painted figs.  I have been wanting to for a while, but they are hard to find in stores where I live. They are challenging in that the skin is mostly dark, but yet filled with rich crimsons, blues and greens. I wanted to bring out those colors while still remaining in a very low key.  They also start to wither pretty quickly, too, so an alla prima one day approach is essential.  I did work on it a second day, but really had to rely on my memory rather than the subject in front of me. I'm satisfied with the result, but definitely would like to practice with figs some more.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Out in Front


Here is another study for the larger painting I am planning, this one  in a slightly different color scheme than the jar with the apple I posted last week.  I am working on combining the subject, primarily the jars and jug with the fruit into a good design and then experimenting with different background colors to best enhance the subject.  Doing these little color studies helps both with the design and gives me an idea of how I will handle painting the objects themselves. This painting was painted over a previous work, and I left a bit of the old painting showing through in places. It is a little bit looser than I usually paint, but I liked the look, so decided to leave it.


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Olive Jars with Onions

I just finished this 12x16 last week and decided to post it, and talk a little bit about my thought process for the composition, rather than post a painting for auction. For this piece, I wanted to have fun with the textures in the old jars which have a variety of colors, as well as both rough and smooth areas where the glazes have worn off over the years. I wanted to create the feeling that they are in the shadows of an old Tuscan kitchen by indicating a strong sense of shadow and light. To direct the light toward the jars and the onions that surround them, I placed  the old copper bowl in front as a dark foil  It has the added value of  picking up the oranges and yellows of the onions in its highlights. I decided on onions as an accompaniment to the jars because their organic shapes compliment  the man made jars and bowl, while keeping to the same family of colors.

Do you think I was successful in fulfilling my idea?  I would love to hear from you.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Peeking Out

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As a still life painter, I am always looking for interesting things to paint.  This week one of my students invited me to her home to look at some of the antiques and various things she has.  I came away with some great items and new inspiration. I immediately began planning a large piece with some of the new objects, which included various old jugs and jars.  This piece was done as a study, and may form a portion of the larger work.  Thanks, Carolyn!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Hat Stack


It's August, hot, humid and rainy here in Florida.  The baseball season is in its final two months. My team is in first place! What better way  to celebrate than by doing a still life of my collection of Red Sox hats.

Today is also my best friend's birthday.  Over the years we have had a tradition of giving each other a painting for our birthdays.  Like me, she is a die hard Red Sox fan, this painting is for her.  Happy birthday, Ruth!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Oysters and White Wine


Oysters and white wine, a perfect combination for a summer afternoon.  The shells were fun to paint, as was the wine bottle, which was really done with just a few brush strokes.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

In the Spotlight

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Another in the box series I did a few weeks ago.  I like how one of the apricots is in the light and the other is lurking in the shadow.

I have been  working on a larger piece for the past ten days, so have not painted any small works.  I finished the larger one yesterday, so will now have to turn my attention to some new smaller ones for the next few days.