Saturday, April 30, 2016

30 in 30!!!!

I did it! I survived & I must say:  wow did I learn a lot with these 30 days. As difficult as it was to paint every day, I do feel that it is very valuable. As I am still trying to figure out my style, I feel that painting everyday (or every other/ or every 2 days) is a sure way to figure out where I want to be.
The below is an abstract of these magnificent purple/fuchsia trees that I like to walk by in the Baker neighborhood. I still need to  figure out how to get the fuchsia color I know I'm seeing....but for now...I will continue to paint frequently...even when I figure it out.
Purple Trees (2016)
Oil on canvas 12x12
Oh, and I did get the bridge done....just in time for April 31st. 

Friday, April 29, 2016

30 in 29

This is another painting done via the view from 900 square feet. It's out of our bedroom window that faces north. It was rushed; done at 5:30 this morning, when I was still a little asleep. Ok, I was a lot asleep. I have been back to painting in the early morning (as of this past week), as it is not too dark and cold these days...until today, when winter came back and with this gloomy, rainy, cold day, I really just wanted to sleep in. Honestly, if I wasn't so close to getting my 30 in 30 done, I would've skipped painting today and called it good. While I don't totally hate this painting, I do wish I would've done it on a bigger surface. 5x7 is just not big enough for these and it really makes getting the proportions done right, difficult for me. I will most likely scrape this one off and use it as a future practice board.
Untitled : getting scraped & recycled
Oil on gesso board
As much as I enjoy painting small....sometimes it's good to go big when you paint home.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

30 in 28

Yesterday was such a nice, warm, sunny day. A friend & I took a long walk during lunch to soak up the beautiful day. We chose our route based on where the most flowers & trees were blooming.
The lilacs have just started to really get their bloom on. It's hard to pass by a lilac tree and not stop and smell them. They are the most lovely fragrance in nature. The smell of lilacs makes me happy.

Lilac Spring (2016)
Oil on clay board 8x8

We all need to stop & smell the lilacs.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

30 in 27

I tried a couple new things with today's painting & neither of them involved eating a tomatoe. I hate, hate, hate raw tomatoes. 

What I did do was paint from a top down view & I sketched the initial painting out trying to get value accomplished in the drawing first. This was much harder than I thought it would be. 

I see you three (2016)
Oil on board 6x6

But there is nothing harder than eating a raw tomatoe....except maybe eating pickles. 

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

30 in 26

I originally bought these purple artichokes to eat but then realized I don't know how to cook artichokes. I'm fairly sure that these pretty purple ladies, swayed me into thinking I could cook anything. However, the fact is, I'm not really good at cooking anything unless I can throw all the ingredients into one pot and leave it to cook all on it's own. I don't enjoy cooking because there are better things for me to do instead, like engaging with all the pretty dolls and Legos who have been waiting all day for me to get home and play.

Artichoke Friends (2016)
Oil on board 6x6
Not to mention a few episodes of Big Bang Theory and Hollywood Medium waiting to be watched.


Monday, April 25, 2016

30 in 25

I going back to the little still lives for the next few paintings. These are my go tos when I'm working on figuring out color relations & how to have relations....with color, of course. Right now I'm working on greens & whites because for some reason I have difficulty with green shades & especially temperature. Contrariwise, finding color in white is just fun for the brain. You can get really playful with it. 

               A lily & an apple (2016)
                    Oil on board 6x6 

Green & white is basically how I balance work & play. 


Sunday, April 24, 2016

30 in 24

I have 6 days left to complete my 30 paintings in 30 days and well...while I have painted each day...I'm already behind. The most important thing I've learned so far with completing 30 paintings in 30 days is that: This is NOT how I work. It's a good challenge & there have been some great benefits for me. However, what I've found with this journey thus far is that my prior process worked quite well for me. I painted about every 2-3 days (more or less), often completing the painting, but also taking a few sessions to work on one painting. I also took days off to "miss" it, play with my family, read some books, & then get to it again. An important part of painting for me is taking the time that is needed (hours, days, weeks) to just stare at my work without finishing it & just thinking about it, taking in how I feel. Not getting rushed, finishing when the time is right. Some call this process procrastination and it is, but I like to work like this. So that is why the below painting is not done. I had to stop painting on it this morning & make a cup of tea, cook some eggs, pack up the day bag, go to the acupuncturist, return books to the library, see the Samurai exhibit at the art museum, weed the garden plot, drink tea and read some comics at the comic shop, pick up a toy kitchen, have a cup of tea, then I thought about working on it tonight....and then instead, I watched some Big Bang Theory. I will most likely finish this one on April 30th, because I work best under pressure.

(The picture for this painting was given to me by my good friend, Connie. She has painted this amazing site....And when I get this one done I will blog to it & give you the 411 on her & her amazing hold your horses) 

Untitled : in procrastination process
Oil on Clay board 8x10

Or I may get it done on April 31st.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

30 in 30... Day 23

Same board, same concept, same color scheme, but a bit different. I am getting my ideas to start my bigger clock tower & I'm messing with some things with how I want to make it happen, at least that's what I'm doing now. Who knows when it will actually happen. 
         Clock tower in abstract (2016)
                Oil on clay board 5x7

Don't hold your breath on this one, I always have a "project" going on. 

Friday, April 22, 2016

30 in 22

I wasn't up too much for making a painting today. I have been feeling under the weather. So I decided to use one of my small boards & practice with making oil paint drip. I used my small clock tower painting as my inspiration & created it with abstract dripping. It's fairly a mess, and may not ever dry, but today was for ideas & getting unstuck. Today was for playing. 
               Untitled (dripping practice)
                       Oil on board 5x7
"All work & no play makes Jack a dull boy."

Thursday, April 21, 2016

30 in 30...the day Prince died

I loved Prince as a young girl. I felt rebellion listening to his music. I loved everything about his music & the way he went about his art. He pushed boundaries & created amazing music. My senior year of high school I choreographed a group dance for our troupe to his song "Thunder" off the Diamonds & Pearls album. I loved the bold of this song & the beginning of it was what inspired the theatrical choreography that made it all come together. I was so proud of that dance and I do believe it performed well at the show. 

I wish I would've done this on 8x10, as the facial features & proportions were very difficult. 

                     Prince 4-21-2016 
               Acrylic on canvas board 7x9

The man is gone, but music lasts forever

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

30 in 20

This past week I walked to & from work. I take various routes, for both variety & to be unpredictable; but mostly to avoid ridged behaviors. I don't often walk down the busy streets, but there are so many blooming trees down Speer Blvd, I couldn't help myself. That's where I discovered this beautiful quiet in the middle of the busy. 

             Quiet in the busy (2016)
            Acrylic on clay board 8x8 

Unpredictably unexpected. 

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

30 in 19

I seem to be on a city painting spree. This is another painting done out the balcony window. It's not plein air, as I was making pancakes when I saw this fantastic sunrise. So it was done from a photo & memory. There are a few things to fix, but I'm honestly already in bed for the night, vegging. It's been a long day. 

             City view sunrise (2016)                  
       Acrylic on board 6x8 (1/4 profile)

Here's to greeting the sun tomorrow with pancakes. 

Monday, April 18, 2016

30 in 18

First of all, Happy Birthday to my mom! What can I say about my mom. My mom did so much for me when I was young & hyper. She enrolled me in all kinds of activities to wear me out each day. She limited my sugar & food dye intake. She drove me to and from dance classes, gymnastics, 5am basketball, softball, sleepovers...She was always there to shuffle me around.! Mother of the year!!

On the flip side, My children are still awake eating Rice Krispie treats at 8:30pm & I took a picture of the city, while driving home tonight in the car. 

(Pardon the glare. This picture will be taken again tomorrow in better light). 

South on Speer (2016) small study
Acrylic on Gesso 5x7
Clearly, I still require some parental guidance. 

Sunday, April 17, 2016

30 in 17

This one is not done. I painted for a few hours today, a productive day. However....
I need to be away from this painting for a little bit or possibly a while (not sure). It needs a look with fresh, rested eyes. The colors & proportions & upper deck are off & really getting to me.  It requires some rework in a day or 112. It has my brain all tricked. 

   Eiffel Tower carousel (2016) unfinished
           Acrylic on canvas 9x12

Sometimes these paintings don't all get done in a day....or ever. 

Saturday, April 16, 2016

It's my view and it's perfect

30 in 16
Everyday, this is my view. 

Year after year we fight off the reality that we will need to move. We have 2 bedrooms; a boy & a girl, 5 years apart. They keep they keep getting bigger. Filing up our empty spaces. Adding more words to their vocabulary. Kicking eachother out of "their" room (of which they currently share). Bigger Fights & bigger forts. 

But, everyday, this is my view. 

Our 900 square feet does not include a yard. There are balls thrown in my house daily, against walls & windows. Cracked picture frames, broken nude statues, overturned house plants, spilled juice. The midcentury hanging hoop lamp shade is the location for epic basketball games between grandpa & grandson. And hallway soccer (which I'm sure our neighbors just love). 

But, everyday, this is my view. 

My kitchen is only big enough for 1 adult and it still contains the original late 60's/70's stove (because it still works!). When my family of four all tries to use the galley kitchen at the same time, we rival the old days to see how many people fit in a telephone booth. However, for us, our kitchen cramming elicits stress & frustration that involves loud voices, till there is only one person left. Alone. The winner!!!! 

We live amongst the buildings all close together, reaching for the sky, in a close and lively space, full of life & art & joy & sometimes sadness. Full of all things memories.
Tower View (2016)
acrylic on canvas 15x30

Every. Single. Day....this is my home. 

And yes, the water soaked computer is still in the shop. 

Friday, April 15, 2016

30 in 15

So I had to revert back to the oils & my fruit, as I needed to use up the oil paint left over on my palette from last Thursday's class....I also had a bunch of green to use too.

                    Two Oranges (2016)
                       Oil on board 6x6

It's always best to be green.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

30 in 14

The last 3 paintings I've done have been with my acrylics. I have missed my acrylics so much. They are my favorite painting medium. They dry so fast & layer so well. It's such a perfect medium for all those who are too busy to wait & who run out of drying space on the art shelves. 

Today I did an abstract of some pink flowers that were beginning to bloom at the botanic gardens. This painting did not start out abstract, but turned that way when I screwed up the first planned painting & got frustrated & then literally threw paint on the board (I am quite dramatic) & said "FU 30 in 30." Then continued to forge through my designated paint time, with the below result. 

Springing Pink (2016)
Acrylic on board 8x10
Throwing paint, swearing, over-dramatics...that how production gets done. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

30 in 13

Tonight I really didn't want to paint. I just wanted to lay around, eat crackers, & watch The Rockies play (& hopefully beat) the Giants. But, I rallied and ended up having a pretty relaxing time painting with the Rockies game on in the background, which may be why I was painting purple.
Purple Pansies (2016)
Acrylic on canvas board 6x8
Sometimes you just need more purple & a bit of a rally to get things done. 

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

30 in 12

There are times living downtown that I absolutely hate....but then there is a quite, beautiful moment...during the rain or snow that just gets me & I can't imagine living anywhere else.

Peace & Quiet (2016)
Acrylic on canvas 12x12

Monday, April 11, 2016

30 in 11

Clearly, I am continuing my tree hugging & Wolf Kahn inspired ways. I spotted these wonderful white tree trunks on a walk with reddish buds getting ready to bloom. The light behind them was a city street, but if you squint & day dream a bit, it's a different place. I added a few extra trees, as there was only 4 & really there is not a forest on 6th & Broadway; and then played up the background. 


               I need more trees (2016)
                Oil on clay board 8x8 

Because really what we need is more play time & day dreaming & a lot less asphalt. 

Ps this one will need a few details added once it's dry. 

Sunday, April 10, 2016

30 in 10

Woke up this morning with a wee bit of a headache, admittedly from too much wine....but for a good cause. My son's school does an annual Art Brew fundraiser, which is a fantastic event. Needless to say, we were out late & drank wine. So this morning I had to revert back to my fruits. Between my frustration with color from yesterday's painting & today's headache, fruit was necessary. 

              Conversing pears (2016)
                Oil on clay board 6x6 

Also necessary is going to be a nap 

Saturday, April 9, 2016

30 in 9

I must say this one was done some what quickly, as our Saturday is fully packed with activity. I snapped this picture a couple nights ago out my children's bed room window. While the sky was fantastic, this painting is not my favorite & I seemed to have forgetten everything I learned in class on Thursday night. I will most likely rework it a little when I get more time. 
I may even revert it to an abstract....
Window Skying (2016)
Oil on clay board 8x8
Who knows...the sky's the limit

Friday, April 8, 2016

30 in 8

Yesterday I took the goldfish to the Denver Botanic Gardens. There is a wonderful children's garden with lots of fun paths & toys to play with. There is very little in bloom right now, so this painting is derived a bit from my comes from the same place where I day dream that the goldfish sits still & never climbs anything...

Dancing Botanic Tree (2016)
Oil on canvas board 8x8
  far fetched daily imagination. 

Thursday, April 7, 2016

30 in 7

Tonight I painted in my drop in class at Student Art League of Denver with professional artist, Don Sahli. I really like this class, as Don really has helped me to see the relationship between colors & how to see color correctly. I'm fairly convinced that he could teach my color blind husband how to see color.  I must say, that this painting is only about 90% mine. Don painted on it a bit to help teach me some techniques. While I have a couple of artist friends who don't like that; for me, as a visual learner, it helps me tremendously just to watch someone paint. That's how I learn best.

                                                                   Still life #5 (2016)
                                                           Oil on canvas board 24x28

Coincidentally, it's also best for me to watch someone else cook my food & clean my house.

Kahn artist

A few weeks back we had a big blizzard. Most everything was shut down, schools, offices....but not Starbucks or my computer training class for work, those were still a go. So, I informed the peacock that he would need to take a snow day & parent the children. He assured me all was good & that he'll just take the day off so they can play and such. So off I go walking to work. Enroute I became mesmerized by this group of trees & the city lights illuminating behind them. Honestly, the scene looked like a painting from the great artist, Wolf Kahn. The colors & contrast were just stunning. I snapped a few shots & continued to my not rescheduled computer class. 

A few hours into the class we were informed that all non-essential staff & classes were canceled & we were told to go home......Because there's an F-ing blizzard outside!!! So, off I trot back to the house. 

Entering the house I quickly realize that there's more going on than just a blizzard outside. The peacock is sitting in his "work" chair, on his computer, working. "Where are the kids?" 
"They're in the back watching a movie. I had to get some things done for work. This snow day is really inconvenient." time I'll schedule it on the weekend so it's easier for you???......
I enter our bedroom & there is a 3 course meal going on in our bed, straight up with chocolate milk cocktails. Princess dresses are all over the floor, as if  there has been a costume change every hour. What the hell? I look at my desk and my laptop is sitting in a puddle of water! "What is going on in here?" "It wasn't me, it was her." my son says out of practiced reaction.  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.......(Hence, why the blog has been composed on the iPad for the past week). "Ya, I agree, this snow day is super inconvenient..."

                Civic Center Trees (2016)
                Oil on canvas board 6x12

Never trust a peacock when there's a blizzard on a work day, they are all Kahn artists. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

30 in 6

When I walk, I try to block out the forest and see only the trees. Trees in the city can often be easy to overlook. We all know they're there lurking about and guiding us along sidewalks. Tall blooming bits of jewelry for your yard or city building. But do we really "see" them? Today on my walk I found a row of sidewalk jewelry that I never noticed. I have walked by this row of trees so many times. How did I miss their orange trunks....too busy engaging with the road rage of the forest, I suppose. 

Bloom (2016)
Oil on canvas board 8x8

I have no idea what these trees are called, but they look really good outside of the forest.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

30 in 5

Why does it seem that we are so accepting of hurry. A hurry to get things done & a hurry to get to the next. A hurry to heal. A hurry to grieve. A hurry to get there. And then a hurry to leave. 
Hurry here, hurry tomorrow, hurry home, hurry up...hurry, hurry, hurry. 
A lot of hurry to bloom before you're ready. Seriously, what's all this hurry for? 

                                                                Late Bloomers (2016)
                                                                    Oil on board 6x8 

Because unless there are free donuts downstairs, there is NO need to hurry. 

Monday, April 4, 2016

30 in 4

Every week I buy flowers for myself for my art work space. They have become my "Starbucks splurge". I have to be honest, while painting is very relaxing for me; with a full time job & 2 kids...there are just days I don't want to do anything except sit in front of the TV watching American Pickers or Hollywood Medium because I'm tired. Tonight was one of those nights. I'm literally brain dead right now and need some caffeine to even finish writing this. 

                                                               Jar of tulips (2016)
                                                          Oil on canvas board 6x12

Now, if only I hadn't spent my Starbucks money on flowers...

Sunday, April 3, 2016

30 in 3

This one....this one, gave me a lot of trouble. I love these little Brandy/scotch/whiskey glasses I inherited from my grandparents. They bring me a lot of joy. Grandma use to give us strawberry pop in these little glasses every holiday. I felt like a queen drinking out of them. I remember thinking that my grandparents must be royalty having these glasses & a piano too. I painted these around 9/10am with my kids running around, jumping off furniture, throwing pillows at each other, & screaming bloody hell. Both these glasses were filled with whisky for painting purposes of course...

Nightcap for two (2016)
Oil on board 6x6
...and tonight they're empty.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

30 in 2

 Back to my little fruits again. Working on painting clear dishes this week. This teacup is part of a set that was given to me for my birthday & I've been waiting for an idea with how to paint it. I am feeling that one of the hardest parts of 30 in 30 will be overcoming the frustration when the painting isn't working & forging through. I had a bit of a struggle with this one, as my brain kept trying to take over. Damn brain. 
                                                      Teacup of raspberries (2016)
                                                           Oil on clayboard 6x6 

Lucky for me I deposited some of it back on Martha's Vineyard. 

Friday, April 1, 2016

30 in 1

I'm putting myself on a challenge for this month. There are 30 days in April, so I am going to paint 30 paintings, 1 a day. Hell, I may even do a push-up with each one too, ya that's a good idea, I will add push-ups each day too (kill 2 birds with one stone). 

I was going to do a theme, but I feel for this first 30 in 30 I will just try to accomplish the challenge and hold myself accountable. I will most likely only be posting to the blog everyday with a few here & there to my Facebook. Sometimes things don't always work out as planned (paintings especially) but it's still good to have the record of learning. 

Here is day 1
I found this bouquet at Sprouts & I bought it specificly to paint for my friend, Dzifa. I met Dzifa when I was travel nursing in Connecticut. She was a Canadian nurse, but originally from Ghana. When I met Dzifa, she couldn't swim or ride a bike. Our other good friend, Lacie, taught her how to ride a bike over about a week, & then the 3 of us set off for a long weekend on Martha's Vineyard to explore & bike the island. The first day we got there, we went ocean kayaking...which, as someone who can't swim, must have been terrifying, but she's a bad ass, so she went anyway. She basically paddled that boat into every rock along the shore, to assure she would not float out to sea. Her only adventure out from the shore, she almost ran into an ocean liner.....I'm surprised we didn't have to pay damages for her boat, that thing was all scratched up. That night we went to a dance club & then everything went downhill from there. Dzifa doesn't drink & Lacie is responsible, so that left me. I can't recall the night, other than I was awesome! Dancing till close, not a care in the world......oh to be 26 again. 
Needless to say, her bike lessons were a complete waste for the next day, as I literally layed on a park bench regretting my awesome, and especially that crazy cartwheel thing I performed landing in the splits.....oh to be 16 again. 

        Looks like Roses, but it's not. (2016)
      Oil on board 8x10
          Gifted to friend 
 So, here's to an awesome record of living & learning.