Beach Talk

Oil on Canvas panel, 12 x 16

I loved painting this picture of my husband and grandson. Everything about it felt sunny and happy. I took the photo at the end of a very pleasant week that the grandchildren stayed with us, at the end of which we delivered them back to their parents on this beautiful beach on the shore of Lake Michigan.

My favorite part of the painting is my grandson’s fingers and their shadow. His pose is so characteristic of him, including the way he is concentrating on pushing his foot into the wet sand. I also enjoy the shadows and their part in the composition.

My husband’s Tilley hat features again!

Forest Plein Air

Another delightful half-hour spent observing and recording nature, this time at a camping site in northern Ohio. I challenged myself to use only knives and blades again (like the last painting at Lake Erie). I rather the like the top version best, before I added the tree trunks!

Plein Air at Lake Erie

We’re on a camping trip to the east coast. I brought my pochade box and spent a delightful hour sitting on the southern shore of Lake Erie at sunset, painting this little study. I had decided to challenge myself by bringing only knives and blades (no brushes), so the painting is a little rougher as a result, but the sensation of sweeping paint across the surface was lovely. We stayed to watch the sun finally sink below the horizon-glorious!

Swinging

IMG_0237 (2)

Oil on canvas panel, 8 x 10

From a photograph I took of a granddaughter, last summer, swinging at my house. As soon as they arrive, they like to run out to the swing and then it’s so easy to capture happy faces! The opposing colors of the fence and grass were actually like that, but I exaggerated them as they picture her ‘all on’ or ‘all off’ personality. I like the way her hair blows back in the swinging breeze.

Kayak Adventures

IMG_0019

Acrylic, 9 x 12

Our family took up kayaking seven years ago, when looking for an accessible and fun family water sport. We have loved being out on the water, in many varied locations. It is usually very peaceful and restorative.

For a long time I’ve wanted to paint the juxtapositon of the brightly colored kayaks and the peaceful settings. I’ve tried before, but never seemed to hit the right feeling. Using the Princeton Catalyst blades with acrylics on an orange ground seems to get much closer to the feeling I’ve wanted.

This was from a trip this summer to Lake Monroe, Indiana. We had a dear friend visiting from California and we took him kayaking for the first time in his 78 years! He thoroughly enjoyed it.

Hollyhocks

Hollyhocks, Acrylic, 9 x 12

These four paintings are all composed of the triad Cadmium Yellow Medium, Quinacridone Magenta and Ultramarine Blue, and each painted in a little over one hour. The first three were from photos I took in my garden this year, and the fourth was from a photo I took in England in 2013.

I began each one as an under-painting using the triad and the mini-blades. It is such an exciting and freeing way to start!

Summer Triads

IMG_0296

Red Treasure, Acrylic 9 x 12

Now I’m adding a time limit (guideline!) to my triad limit. I’m trying to keep each painting time to around an hour—challenging! This triad is Cadmium Yellow Medium, Cadmium Red Medium and Ultramarine Blue (plus Titanium White).

I decided to try the skin tones in the same acrylic colors, and I was using one of my larger brushes to try and capture the big tones and not fuss with the detail. I was pretty excited that I actually could paint as loosely as this!