Sunday, December 28, 2008

Melting Snow

Our two feet of snow melted today. We didn't have much sun, but it felt like at least 60 degrees. For some reason our backyard is the usually the last one on the block to melt, but today it kept up, so even the cat got a nice walk.
All day long I was itching to paint something and this evening the setting sun was glinting so prettily on the remaining snow patches that I decided to capture it. I am starting my New Year's resolution early, to try harder while painting to convey emotion rather than merely copy what I see. I think this is a good start. Size is 6x8 on Old Holland linen.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Snowy Garden

Yesterday afternoon during the snowstorm I decided to set my easel up in the kitchen and paint the view from the window. I love the little tufts of snow covering the sunflower heads. I don't cut any of my garden back until the spring as it is useful during the winter to the backyard wildlife. The dried foilage can be used for shelter, perches, and even food. I saw a chickadee last week picking out sunflower seeds that had been overlooked in one of the flowers. Last night after the snow stopped, it became very cold and windy. I saw a rabbit hop to the back of our little pond against the fence to find shelter in the tall dense grasses there.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Scituate at Dusk

In September, I spent a weekend in Scituate staying in a house just a short walk from the beach. I had painted the house shown in these two paintings from life in the morning before kayaking. When dusk arrived, I returned and found the scene even more entrancing. It was much too dark to paint on the beach, so I worked from photos and just finished these today. Since we are currently having a snowstorm, I am going to set my easel up by the window and see what I can come up with.

Friday, December 19, 2008

an abundance of roses

This 14 x 18 oil was painted for my sister-in-law. The request was for a horizontal landscape that includes roses over a stone wall, with some kind of a structure in the background. It look a long time to find a suitable scene, but I finally found one not far from her house in Chelmsford. The owner of the property actually drove by while I was taking pictures from the road and when I explained what I was doing, he seemed pleased that someone was taking an interest in his beautiful roses.

The painting has come a long way, and I discovered that it really is necesssary for me to work standing up on anything larger than a miniature. Having complete freedom of movement makes the painting experience more enjoyable, and one does tend to stand back more readily, than when sitting down.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Printer's Ink

I discovered this antique ink bottle in Concord, MA in a shop called Nesting. It's a fascinating place in which to browse around, especially if you love old, worn things as I do. I will have to go back to buy some of the old buttons, bar tokens, and clock gears. The place was filled with still life possibilities. It's rare that I come across an item that I absolutely cannot live without, but I just had to paint this bottle, so it has a new home with me.
For some reason, I had trouble starting this painting. I was not feeling very confident and couldn't decide on a base color. I finally told myself to get over it and mindlessly slapped green paint down. Most of it got scrubbed off, but it stained the linen a pretty color. The linen is called Centurion and it came in a sampler pad. The surface has such a luscious feel to it that I am wondering if it was oil-primed. I thought I would have to take a few days on this, but it took the layers of paint very well. Centurion just might be my new favorite painting surface.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Wayside Inn, Sudbury

Looks like a quiet scene but the Wayside Inn was very busy with weddings and wedding receptions when I was painting there on a Saturday a few months ago. I was lucky to have one end of the garden to myself. I found out that this building boasts a gallery as well as a restaurant, so one of my goals is to have a show there.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Paintings from an island

In September, I spent a very enjoyable weekend at the cottage of a fellow artist on Long Island, Maine. These three oils were painted en plein air with a few touch ups in the studio. The first day was very foggy which made for an ethereal atmosphere fascinating both to paint and to observe. The surrounding islands and boats were constantly drifting in and out of view.

These paintings and many more will be available for purchase on Sunday, Dec. 7 at the Celebrate Newton Arts & Crafts festival.