Friday, December 27, 2013

Girl Interrupted...

"Girl Interrupted" (16x20) oil on linen

Above is the first version/study of a larger piece I am repainting (working title: "Disconnect") that will be loser and darker as it moves toward the left where the man is, so there will be more emphasis and focus on the woman...

(30x40) canvas

This is the initial wash-in over the drawing that was transferred with the grid method from my original drawing (you can see I changed the chair in the top version)...this one is quite a bit larger on canvas.


Thursday, December 19, 2013

New works for upcoming solo show...

 Note Bender (12x12) o/c

A couple of new paintings for my show opening next month at Bonner David Galleries in Scottsdale, Arizona entitled "Personal Space".  It is an all-figurative solo show of recent work that runs from Jan 23rd to Feb 3rd, 2014.  
Untitled (12x9) o/p

20+ works will be exhibited for sale with various subject matter including music, ballet, kitchen restaurant scenes and women in intimate settings...

Friday, December 13, 2013

Days of Future Past...

 Ebb Tide (24x30) o/c

I was able to paint several times in California this year, and grateful for it - the land of my nativity...and first 26 years. Interesting how the environmental imprints of your youth have an effect lasting the whole of your life. Living in the Pacific Northwest, I naturally miss the sunshine thru the winter months, but not the crowds... Still, I find I need to visit as often as possible the older I get.

Canyon Morning (9x12) o/c

Instead of a little red sports car or a tawdry affair, I can quell any mid-life crisis with a painting trip to Southern California - especially the coast. Even the coast of Oregon will work if the whether permits (summer time mostly). As parents and relatives pass away,  it's becoming more and more important to visit those places of my youth and connect to the memories of the past.  Painting does that on an entirely new and often deeper level - satisfying and enriching. And I appreciate my encouraging wife who supports me on these trips; I don't believe she understands it fully, but that doesn't matter as long as I get recharged and back home to her again. 

Our daughter who is building her own memories for the future will experience this longing too; memories that will haunt her back home to Oregon someday when she's grown and gone...

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Fall Colour in Plein Air!


These are from earlier this Fall, painting with my friend, Anton Pavlenko in Washington state. It was actually a nice warm Autumn day and the colours were turning everywhere -- a great time to paint in the Pacific Northwest!

Unfinished (16x20)

This one I didn't get finished on site, but got a good start -- sometimes time and sun light are taskmasters that work in your favor, causing you to stop before you normally would in the controlled light of the studio... I'll finish it later (and with as few strokes as possible to not overwork this foundation done from life).

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

On the Easel...

(24x48" o/c)

This is a new piece I'm working on that needs a title -- any ideas?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Secret Spot

Flat Rocks, Oregon Coast (12x16) o/c

This is a favorite spot on the coast near Pacific City, just north of Neskowin, Oregon. I got there at minus tide which reveals a whole maze of rock channels that are usually partly submerged even at regular low tide. The high sandstone wall of Cape Kiwanda (local popular surf spot) is just to the right, out of view -- in the distance is Cascade Head at the north end of Lincoln City...

I know a lot of plein air painters from other parts of the country who would love to paint the central Oregon Coast (if they knew such a place existed). 
For now though, we'll just keep it a secret between the two of us...

Saturday, November 16, 2013

    "The Curve" (20x24)

This is a new piece for my figure show coming up in January at Bonner David Galleries in Scottsdale, AZ.  I plan on having 18-20 new pieces on display opening 1-23-14.


 My model, Kira posed at our friend's house who had a claw foot tub -- do you know how hard it is to find a claw foot tub when you need one!!  Not easy... Anyway, I like the colour harmony in this with the natural overcast daylight coming thru the off-camera window.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Laguna Plein Air Painters Invitational

 "Autumn's Reprise" (16x20)

Here are a couple of my paintings from the recent Laguna Plein Air Painters Association's Invitational event held in October. It was a great week of painting in summer-like weather, and seeing friends & family in So Cal... I grew up in that area and have many fond memories going back to my early childhood when we would visit my mother's best friend there.

"Laguna Gold" (16x20)

In the mid 80's I had a small studio space in north Laguna and lived just south of there in Dana Point. A lot has changed over the years, but the charming character of Laguna remains along with the beauty of it's rocky coves that lured William Wendt and Edgar Payne there a hundred years ago... I hope to return to next years event and do it again -- never tire of that beautiful place!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Progress shots for "Mending"

 (about 45 minutes into the start)

This is a 16x20 painting of my friend, Pam. This was done from a photograph in between other projects, so I spread it out over 3-4 sessions. Being a fan of the Russian impressionists, I really had fun doing this one.

 (a little over 2 hours in)

I find it odd though, that galleries are hesitant to show this subject matter. The fact is, I have received quite a number of compliments from all over the internet for this series. I sold another painting of Pam to a couple in the south, another one to a collector in Los Angeles, had another one featured as an Honorable Mention winner in Southwest Art magazine last year and had yet another one purchased by the hosting gallery's owner in last years American Impressionist Society's Annual Exhibition...

Finish (about 5 hours total)

Even though Pam isn't Russian, she sure looks the part... AND people have responded favorably. Thanks again, Pam for all your help! And to those galleries who think they know the pulse of ALL art buyers, take another look; there's a collector for every subject -- especially a beautiful one like this...

Monday, October 7, 2013

Laguna Beach Plein Air Invitational

"Trabuco Canyon Nocturne" (16x20)

Off to Laguna Beach this week for the LPAPA Invitational...been wanting to do this one for awhile as that is the area where I grew up. I had studio space in North Laguna for a couple of years back in the mid-eighties, and have been going there with family since the 1960's -- many happy memories of that beautiful town. Hoping to get a last grab of summer weather while I'm there too... The sale day of the show is Sunday Oct 20th, 10am to 3pm at Aliso Creek Inn in Laguna Beach, CA.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

 Sonoma Coast (9x12)

Here are a couple of the 10 pieces I painted last week at Sonoma Plein Air... The weather was perfect at the beach when I painted this one above; no wind, sunny and warm. The rest of the week went pretty much the same until the dreaded outdoor sale day -- it rained, no poured ALL day long! They gave us plastic to put over the display boards that our paintings hung on, but they still got wet as the water blew around...  All in all though, it was a good experience. The volunteers and SPA folk did a great job taking care of us and really put on a nice gala dinner on Friday night (as usual). 

Vineyard Spirits (16x20)

My "collector" Tina Shone, who bought my grand prize winner from last year stepped up to buy my silent auction entry this year (both of which have full moons rising as the subject matter -- thank you, Tina!!). I also sold 3 more pieces on the 'rain day' and had a good time seeing my painter friends... Even though the weather no doubt kept a number of would-be buyers away, the ones who did make it out had a great selection to choose from, and little competition to buy... Glad a few of them chose my work -- made the 9.5 hour drive home a bit easier...

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Blue moon in August

August Moon (8x10)

Painted this during a "blue moon" in August... A blue moon is when you have a second full moon in one month, or a fourth full moon in a season. This one was rising as the sun was setting, so it made for some beautiful colour!

Friday, September 6, 2013

SUMMERLAND show opens tonight!

"Land Patterns"

Tonight my landscape show, "SUMMERLAND" opens at 
Brian Marki Fine Art in Portland, Oregon! 
23 pieces in all - runs thru October 2nd, 2013


Monday, August 26, 2013

The Hour of Romance...

"The Hour of Romance" (30x30)

This piece will be in my show opening September 6th at Brian Marki Fine Art in Portland, OR.
23 landscapes in all... (the new work will be on their web site shortly at which time I will post a link).

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Peace in the Valley (24x30) o/c

This plein air painting will be in my show, "Summerland" opening September 6th at Brian Marki Fine Art in Portland, OR. 

I came across this scene in Banks, Oregon; a rural community west of Portland that butts up against the east side of the Coastal mountain range... It has a kind of northern California feel to it since I reshaped the trees a little once I got it back in the studio.

I have eucalyptus (which are rare up here) on the brain right now...should probably see a specialist about that...

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Plein Air in the Columbia Gorge

 Idyll Hour (20x24) o/c

The Columbia River divides the States of Oregon and Washington in the Pacific Northwest and has one of the most scenic drives known as "The Gorge"...a beautiful cavernous section of forest-lined cliffs carved by water over thousands of years. The mountains there turn an almost unbelievable brilliant rich blue with the moisture in the air on overcast days. I recently painted these pieces on sight there with my Russian born artist friend, Anton Pavlenko...

Blue Grandeur (24x30) o/c

I usually desire a sunny day for plein air painting, but after experiencing the gorge on a day like this, I will definitely be returning on the grey days!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Delicate Hands progress shots

 Day 1; block-in...

 Day 2; adding detail, adjusting value...

"Delicate Hands" (20x24 o/p)

This piece was juried into the American Impressionist Society's 14th Annual exhibition and will hang at M Gallery in Charleston, South Carolina from Sept, 28 thru Nov 2nd, 2013.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Recent Field Studies...

 Tillamook, Oregon (early evening)

A smattering of sketches from the road in Oregon: Summer is the time to get out and explore the countryside, and it's fun to capture different landscape and light situations... Some end up being no more than throw-away pieces, but a little something is learned with each attempt...

 Newport, Oregon (early morning)

 Kings City, Oregon (Mid-afternoon)

Banks, Oregon (early evening)

Monday, July 29, 2013


 Summer Barn (12x16)

Been out barn sketching again. They end up on a lot of artists canvases, but they're a vanishing breed. I've done 3 the last four evenings; partly as an exercise to incorporate a man-made structure into a colorful landscape, and partly as an escape from my suburban existence to where I want to someday live. I will include this one in my upcoming solo show of landscapes entitled "Summerland" opening September 6th at Brian Marki Fine Art in Portland, OR

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Barn Storming

 Historical Remnant (9x12) o/c

I found this old barn on a country road outside of Easton, MD during Plein Air Easton last week... The farmer wasn't home and I was a little leery of setting up on his property without permission...but I did it anyway. I figured a good little painting could be worth the possible trespass ticket, but an imagined load of rock salt in a shotgun made me paint as fast I ever had before, and I think produced a decent little gem...

Relic (16x20) o/c

As I was packing up to leave,  a renter of one of the many barns on the property drove up and said he thought it was fine to paint there, so I repositioned my easel and did this larger version... It came out alright too, but I think the smaller piece is the best one. Sometimes our best work is done under pressure, imagined or not...

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Five O'clock Shadow

"Five O'clock Shadow" (9x12)

Painted this one on site somewhere in the country west of where we live in Oregon... I could find it again, but probably couldn't tell you how I got there. Sometimes you drive around waiting for the light to get good -- sometimes you drive around looking for a decent subject to sketch... Either way, you usually do a lot of driving around, but at least this time I came home with something.

Sometimes you don't...

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Simplicity every now and then...

"On Sauvie Island"

A simple design with a quick execution is a good part of a balanced diet... I try to keep this in mind (especially after struggling with a complex painting). If I were a Zen master (my painting might be better for one thing) but I could probably explain the benefits more concisely too. 

I can say this however; simplicity in design sheds an immediate and clearer light on the truth (how's that for profundity?) Like running water taking the path of least resistance, go with the truth you see before you without trying to say more or adding to it... Don't forget, your effort is all that's needed to make it your own.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Hot Pink & Olive

Hot Pink & Olive (16x12)

A recent ballet piece; I like the design aspect even though this subject matter is really over done by painters -- maybe this is the last one for a while...

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Quick Sketch

"Sheridan Spring"

We had one nice break in the weather the other day, so I ventured out in the early evening into an area I had not visited before. I came across this configuration, and with a little artistic license (but not much) came home with the above quick sketch... 

Today, back to the rain...

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Progress on "Mood Indigo"...

 Progress shot #1 (30x40)

I started with a simple line drawing in a thin wash over my pencil lines (which were scaled up on a grid from a smaller sketch). Then I erased the pencil lines and lightly stained the canvas with burnt sienna...

 Progress shot 2

The model I hired here is Amber, a professional jazz singer in the Portland area... The reference for the male figure came from photos of the late Mississippi Fred McDowell.

 Finished close up


Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Kentucky Derby Bottle

A case of the official bourbon for the 2013 Kentucky Derby just arrived!  
I was fortunate to have been commissioned to paint the artwork for the Woodford Reserve bottle this year that coincides with the 139th Derby,  running this May 4th at Churchill Downs...they even added my signature to the tape that seals the bottle top and an artist bio card on the neck -- quite an honor to be associated with such an iconic American sporting event!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Back to Work...

 "Night Shift" (20x24) o/p

Back at it in the studio today, and thankful for a wonderful weekend with family and is good (because it's life)...