Search This Blog

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Painting from my vehicle

Today I went up to the top of Mt. Rose to the meadow to paint.  I planned it a week ago, and there was snow and rain just a few days ago.

I still went, but there were high winds, so I made changes to my painting plan.  I took a small watercolor kit that I could work in my vehicle.  I was warm, out of the wind, and had a great view from my truck!

Here is my set up:  a box top served as my desk on my lap, the center console held my water container, and the driver's set held more supplies.

There were plenty of people up there!  Several snowshoers with dogs, trekking across the meadow, and kids home from school were sliding in saucers down the hill.  Now there is a hardy bunch of people!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Golfers have caddies or golf carts - I've got someone with four legs to carry me and my gear!

I had the perfect day today!  Summer is over and the parks are empty!  With my trusty friend, I went for a ride at Washoe Lake...and we went where the hooved ones are not supposed to go.....

the picnic area!

That is because it is the only place that has trees!  We need a tree for valet parking.  Then I sat down on the sand and did a mini pastel painting.

Here is my mini kit - it fits in the saddle packs.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Painting at the local arboretum

9 x 12 oil

We have an arboretum in Reno, with a creek down the hill with wild plants and a tangle of trees and fallen-but-still-living cottonwood trees.

Today I painted with another friend there.  Today I was pleased that I finished in two hours.  I did a few things different - I used more turpenoid in the beginning and then put the board in the sun to dry it.  When most of it was dry, I could continue painting with Walnut oil alkyd medium with half turp.  I also premixed piles of colors and values.  And that helped, too.

New sketchbook, new pens

On a visit to Chicago a month ago, we were at the Art Institute, enjoying the art.  In the gift shop there was a sketchbook on sale for $9!!!  It is slick paper, so I thought an ink pen would work nice.  I bought an ink pen from Sakura with a brush tip.  This is what it looks like - very bold and very black.  I used watercolor pencils and a water filled brush to spread it around.  The ink is not affected by the water.

Later, we went to San Francisco, and I tried a fine tip pen by Sakura.  Then I used the watercolor pencils and waterbrush.  This is what it looks like.  I like this pen a lot.  I sketched from our hotel room (what a view!  Coit Tower!  We got lucky with our room!)

Then, the next day it was foggy and cold, and I sketched from the warmth of the car as we looked at the golden gate bridge in the mist.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Recent Paint-Outs

9 x 12 oil on panel

It is funny, the more I am playing with oil paints, the harder it is getting?!  I wonder why that is...maybe I am having more expectations than I was before.  Sometimes you just have to go with the flow I guess.  The painting above is from the most recent paint-out at Mayberry Park.  It was at 2:30 that we met and began to set up.  It was 4:30 or so when we finished.  The sun had gone down behind the hill, and the sudden change in light available made it difficult to see my values and warms and cool colors.  It was also too dark to take a picture.  Before packing up, I realized I had "made mud" with my colors, and lost my shapes.  So, the only way to deal with that (I have heard) is to scrape it off, or wipe it off with turpentine and a paper towel.  I did just that and left a ghost painting (below).  After that dried, at home, I re-worked it till I was satisfied (above).  I still think I need to practice a lot more!  Mixing paints is fun, but sometimes a challenge!

Below is a painting I did the week before, and it was done totally en plein air.  It is OK, but not totally what I was planning on the outcome to look like.  At least it is loose and I didn't make mud.

10 x 8 oil on panel