5th Anniversary

Today is the fifth anniversary of my Weblog!! I started the weblog on a trip to Ouray Colorado, Tuesday January 14, 2003 when I had a one man show at the Ago Gallery there. It was the middle of winter, freezing cold…in fact so cold they were having the annual “Ouray Ice Festival” at the time. Below is a photo composite of the Dallas Divide near Ouray.

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For the first four years, I just ‘rolled my own’ blog, not using standard weblog software. The reason at the time was I wanted it completely integrated in my web site. I switched to WordPress software in January of 2007, to get extra features such as RSS feeds, blog searching, etc. which would have been pretty hard to ‘program’ in my own website. This may lead some people to believe my blog is only a year old, but it really is five.

You can read my first weblog entry here. and the last on the old software here.

You can always get to the old log entries by following the Old Archives links in the right hand column of this page.

Menlo Art League Demonstration

Just returned from doing a demo at the Menlo Art League in Menlo Park, here California. I had been invited to do the demo quite awhile ago, and tonight was the night.

Been debating on whether to paint a California seascape or a Lake Tahoe scene. Just before New Years, James Harold Galleries called, said they were selling, and wanted more of my works…see this blog post. So, that made my decision…paint Tahoe!!

It was a small, but good crowd, maybe 20 total showed including a handful from the Peninsula Outdoor Painters, whom I paint with occasionally on location. They had learned about it either indirectly, or directly from one of my emails….yes, emails work sometimes!!

I had about 90 minutes to work on the painting. As usual, I blocked in the basic painting prior to the event. When I demo, I try to use a fairly large panel so the audience can readily see it, usually a 16×20 (as this time), a hard canvas to cover in the allotted time, but I go for it and see what happens.

It went smoothly, but with the positioning of lights in the room and where my easel was set, I had a little trouble with matching the color on my palette with what I wanted on the canvas…not unusual in an outdoor environment!!

I got the painting about 60% complete, as I wanted to jump around to various parts to show my technique and how to do in certain areas.

Josie took the below photos.

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The Plein Air Scene

For those of you who have not heard of this website, be sure and check it out. The Plein Air Scene is a ‘must’ bookmark for any plein air artist, or any other artist for that matter. Of particular interest to me is the listings of current art shows, upcoming events, paint-outs, and galleries in California. Of course this post is a little self serving as Sarah Beserra, publisher of the website, just put one of my paintings on the home page!

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Back to Work & Trying New Technology

I didn’t paint much over the holidays, in fact not much the last month. I have had a lot of lower back pain the past few months, and although could still paint, just haven’t been overly enthused about sitting in front of an easel. I did make use of the time, however, watching some newly obtained demonstration videos by Scott Christensen. I met Scott at the 1991 Arts for the Parks event and have followed his exploding career ever since.

James Harold Galleries at Lake Tahoe called just before New Years, told me the market is picking up and they recently sold 4 of my works. Nothing like a little snow to bring in the skiers and subsequently the art customers! And nothing like selling some paintings to encourage me back to the studio! My back pain is also getting better, which helps.

I have done three small paintings the last couple days, and am trying some new technology. My wife gave me an iPod Touch, which allows you to download and view pictures on its 3.5 inch screen. I have gone all digital in my picture taking for some time, and usually print out studies I want to paint. Since my printer is having some problems, I decided to try painting from the iPod Touch. It works fairly well, as the screen is very clear, but I have to set it down and not touch it while painting. Why? Because I usually get paint all over my hands and don’t want to mess up my new iPod!

Below is a snapshot of one of my paintings with the iPod Touch. The painting is only 4×6 inches, barely larger than the iPod!!

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In the past I tried painting from a laptop, but it takes up a lot of space in my cramped studio. I think I could do a large painting from the iPod as it gives plenty of detail of a scene…at least enough to paint from. Plus, I don’t have to waste paper to print out my studies. Nothing like new technology.