Monday, January 23, 2012

Superstition, Oil on Linen, 12x16
I no longer feel guilty about working on this one for 3 days. The painting is a lot better than it was 3 days ago even though I thought it was done then. I've sort of made up the rocks based on a group in the Superstition mountains of Arizona. You would think that would give me a lot of latitude in shaping them, but this is really not the case. The forces that shape mountains do so in a very specific way, and if you try to reshape them without considering how they were created, you will end up with mountains made of Play-Doh. 

Another challenge with this painting was shooting a photo of it. Months ago I thought I had figured out a technique to shoot my work, but recently I've changed how I apply the paint to the canvas, and as a result, there is more of a sheen to deal with. This is my best shot of this painting to date but I'm still not satisfied. The learning goes on.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Tea Pot Rock, Oil on Linen, 11x14
Again, this is painted right on top of one I did three years ago while on a painting excursion to Sedona, Arizona. "Why not just start a new canvas?" you might ask. Because, besides the fact that I don't like to waste resources, I don't like to have bad paintings around; especially ones I painted. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

Arizona 1, Oil on Linen, 12x16
(revised 1/17/12)
Three years ago we were in Arizona painting. The other day I was going through the reject pile and pulled out several from the Arizona trip. My goal this week is see if I can bring them to life. 

The original painting underneath what you are seeing here was kind of washed out and lackluster. I hadn't really captured the day and the rocks looked kind of loaf-like. This is a complete re-do of the original.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Dan Patch and Lafayette, Oil on Linen, 12x16
Another reworking of an older painting, this one is from July of 2010. I was not satisfied with the sky in the original painting. I've since learned a bit more about making less go farther.
Ice Break, Oil on Linen, 12x16
(revised painting. The original was painted in February of 2011)
They had not yet begun construction on the Lafayette Bridge in Saint Paul when I painted this on location last winter. Yesterday with yet another snow storm avoiding us and with nothing to look at but barren frozen ground, I got out some older paintings that were crying for some touch-up work. This one was high on my list. It needed some color adjustment and got it.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Spring Melt, Oil on Linen, 18x24
(revised 1/12/12)
Happy New Year. We finally got a coating of ice and snow over the New Year's weekend, followed by strong cold winds. So I decided to stay home and do some studio painting. Spring Melt is based on a smaller field study that I painted in March of 2010. Every now and then it's good to check your progress as a painter. Although I did a fair job on capturing the day on the previous painting, it lacked a bit in anatomy. Perhaps it's just that this is a bigger painting, or that I took my time getting the drawing right, but I tend to believe that the reason it is better than the painting I did two years ago is that the lessons of four and five years ago are finally starting to sink in.