Monday, October 12, 2015

My Favorite Time of Year

"When witches go riding,
and black cats are seen

the moon laughs and whispers,

‘tis near Halloween."

When Black Cats Are Seen

I have been decorating for Halloween since the fourth of July! Every year I start a little earlier. I love the autumn and Halloween has to be my very favorite holiday. It gets my imagination invigorated. After a couple of months of paintings only abstracts, I've been having some fun painting more representational images.

I'm thinking ahead to my upcoming workshops and sorting out various projects and lesson plans. Our "Painting Trees in Alcohol Inks Workshop" on November 7th is filled! I am taking requests by email to be put on a waiting list for this workshop if you are interested.

My two day, "Winter Holiday Alcohol Ink Workshop" is filling up fast. Students will use pouring and blending techniques to incorporate festive, beautiful backgrounds on ornaments, tiles and Yupo paper. Making gifts with holiday and winter themes will be the focus of this fun filled workshop. The process is quick and easy and each participant will produce several mini masterpieces each day while honing skills and making unique art pieces they’ll be proud of, ready to display or give as gifts. Be sure to get your registration in to reserve your spot ASAP.

As always, private, semi-private and group classes are available at my studio, tailored to meet your needs and exceed your expectations.

"Shadows of a thousand years rise again unseen,

Voices whisper in the trees, 
'Tonight is Halloween!'"

~Dexter Kozen

Thanks For Stopping By.
Happy Creating My Friends! 

X ♥  O

Monday, October 5, 2015

Painting Trees at Sandarosa Studio

"Today's accomplishments 
were yesterday's impossibilities."  
~ Robert H. Schuller
See Seeking Enchantment here
 Attention inkers, there's only one spot left for the
 Nov. 7th Alcohol Ink Tree Workshop.

Although there were only three participants,

my October 3rd Watercolor Workshop was held
at The Sandarosa and was a great success.

Wet-in-Wet Watercolor Trees on Arches and Yupo Workshop - 10-3-15
Between medical issues and obligations, our
group filtered down to three exuberant enthusiasts.

It was a cold, dark, rainy day, but the studio
was bursting with light and laughter.

I threw my demos down on a board and snapped this pic.

The workshop focused on painting fir trees on Arches and Yupo paper.

I haven't painted more than a half a dozen pieces on cotton rag since I started using Yupo paper almost exclusively back in January of 2013. It felt really good to re-explore old, familiar territory and find out that I still have the upper hand.

After watching my first demo, each artist did two trees (7.5 x 5.5")
(after wetting both sides of the paper) on the Arches 140 lb. cotton rag.

While they painted, I was able to help each artist with physical issues like color mixing, consistency of pigment, holding the brush, wetness vs. dryness, and techniques like flicking and squiggling. This is one of the big advantages of physical training over only using video or virtual instruction. It is hard to know if you are doing something wrong or ineffectively when there is nobody with trained eyes to observe you. After so many years of painting and art teaching experience, I can usually spot bad habits or faulty techniques that may be holding someone back. Then I can help nip them in the bud, before they become problematic or ingrained.

Student work on cotton rag from the 10-3-15 Watercolor Workshop

"I value a "don't know" attitude highly,
because it's ambiguous,
and fosters a "beginner's mind"
in which there are more possibilities
than in an "expert's mind."
~ Theresa Bayer

Student work on Yupo from the 10-3-15 Watercolor Workshop
Each participant also successfully finished one or more trees on Yupo paper.
In the end, it was unanimous that the
Yupo paper was the favorite surface of the day!
Hooray! Yippee for Yupo!

"Man is always more than he can know of himself; consequently, his accomplishments, time and again,
will come as a surprise to him."
~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Only Two More Alcohol Ink Workshops
Scheduled for 2015!
As of this post, there is only one slot available for November 7th.

A NEW Two Day, Holiday Workshop has just been added!
See more information here. 

Happy Creating My Friends! 

X ♥  O

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Put Your Soul Into It

"There is nothing in this world 
you cannot accomplish if you are willing to forfeit your deposit." 
~ Robert Brault

30 Paintings in 30 Days ~ September 2015

As you can see, and probably already know if you're reading this, my theme this time around was once again abstracts painted in alcohol inks. I had started "painting ahead" for this challenge in mid August, which really took a lot of the pressure and stress away. I even finished two days ahead of schedule this time around and have a couple of promotional ideas for these pieces in the works. I often heard Tony's advice when it all just seemed too overwhelming; 

"When the going gets tough,
just put the pedal to the metal and drive on."
~ Tony Couch

The challenge was easier for me this time around, but it was still no cake-walk. Uploading high resolution, meticulously processed images of each painting in various orientations to my Fine Art Print Site and showing each painting in a room setting meant lots more photos, file organizing, Photoshoping and tons more computer time. I think the effort was well worth it though. Being able to offer just the right room accents, in the right style, size, colors and price range to more designers and collectors is a definite plus.

30 Paintings in Rooms in 30 Days ~ Sept. 2015

Today I am pleased to present this retrospective of my
Sixth 30 Paintings In 30 Days Collection.

Each number and title links to a larger view with painting details, color swatches, room settings and print options associated with each piece.

You can see my current abstract print offerings here.

"Today's accomplishments were
yesterday's impossibilities."
~ Robert H. Schuller

Here's an overview of my past challenges:

The January 2013 Collection:

September 2013 - Second Challenge Series:

January 2014 - Third Challenge Collection:

September 2014 - Fourth 30 in 30 Collection:

January 2015 - Fifth 30 in 30 Collection: 

Wishing each and every one of you all the best in life. Congratulations to all of you who also took on the challenge. Thanks so much for following along and cheering me on again in my journey.
Happy creating and/or collecting!

Follow me on Facebook  /  Join my Yupo Artists Group

September 2015 - 30 Paintings in 30 Days - Wrap-Up

"The intelligent man is one
who has successfully fulfilled
many accomplishments,
and is yet willing to learn more."
Ed Parker

X ♥  O

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The Ultimate Quest

"First, one seeks to become an artist 
by training the hand – techniques. 
Then one finds it is the eye 
that needs improving – drawing skills.
 Later, one learns it is the mind that
 wants developing – design or composition; 
only to discover that the ultimate quest 
of the artist is in the spirit – content."
~ Larry Brullo

September 2015 - 30 Paintings in 30 Days - Day Thirty

See abstracts in room settings here.
"It is a shameful thing to be weary of inquiry
when what we search for is excellence."
~ Cicero

See (E and F) Soul Searching here and here.
Prints of this painting in different orientations are available here.

See this image framed here.
"Sometimes you have to go through something else
to find what you're looking for."
~ Robert Genn

Another 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge has come to an end. I can hardly believe it's over. After doing it five previous times, I can honestly say that they do get easier. I am glad I took this opportunity to turbo- charge my career. Accelerated production has a way of clarifying the search and adding velocity to the journey. I want to thank each and every one of you for your wonderful feedback, support and for coming along on this wild, amazing, abstract, alcohol ink ride with me!

"There's always a way to do it better. Find it."
~ Thomas Edison

Come back tomorrow to see the wrap up collage of all 30 of my alcohol ink abstracts!

Thanks so much for your friendship, 
 X ♥  O

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Repeating Threads

"There is always more to be found by exploring
the same subject again and again."
~ Dion Archibald

September 2015 - 30 Paintings in 30 Days - Day Twenty-nine

See this painting and others in room settings here.
"With repetition, the alternate approaches
become clear and options open."
~ Robert Genn
See Intervention here

See this painting as a framed print here.

Prints of this painting in different orientations are available here.

"A master painting has multiple repeating threads running through it. These hold the painting together
and unify it in much the same way a great symphony
is tied together by a repeated main theme. Variety in these repeated elements, as in music, adds interest
to the painting. Repetition, variety, unity, harmony
are characteristics of all great symphonies
and of all great paintings."
~ Barry John Raybould

"The key to mastery is through repetition." 
~ Sandy Sandy

There's only one day left of the September 2015 - 30 in 30 Challenge!
I hope I have offered enough 'variation to my repetition' here to keep
you entertained with this month's abstract adventure.
Thanks for your friendship and happy creating!

X ♥  O