6″ x 6″ (15 x 15 cm) – oil on gessobord – SOLD
This was supposed to be the last of the three paintings for the Buck County gallery show. After this one the plan was to relax, go sketching, catch up with planning the USk Chicago Seminar, maybe do laundry… But while I painted it I heard from Randy Higbee about his spectacular 6″ Squared Show in December. I managed to miss it last year and promised myself to make sure to be in it this year. And so I need two more paintings to make it into two different shows. Pressure! Stress! Deadlines! I thought I left that kind of stuff behind when I left the corporate rat race – LOL!
I am rather pleased with this painting. The idea occurred to me in early summer, when Rainer cherries were in season. I composed my setup, but wasn’t sure of it. So I sketched it first and showed the sketch to my Sketckpack buddies. They liked it. With that I felt better and painted it :).
6″ x 6″ (15 x 15 cm) – oil on gessobord
The second painting for Buck County 6 x 6 show later this fall. Two down – one more to paint. I had fun with new textures I had to play with – leather, suede and velvet.
Being curious I Googled John McCormack and The Trumpeter and to my delight found a recording – from a vinyl – of John McCormack singing The Trumpeter in 1915 – 98 years ago. It is so good – it gives me goosebumps!
6″ x 6″ (15 x 15 cm) – oil on gessobord
It seems that every realist painter worth his or her salt paints eggs at some point. It is almost like a rite of passage. Can I or can I not?!… I noticed this phenomena some time ago and knew that I too would have to paint eggs sometime.
And now I have. It was damned hard, just as expected. They have to be perfect, I discovered, and curve perfectly in the light or they will not look like real eggs – and that’s the whole point!
Eggs are an excellent assessment of one’s current skill as a realist painter. I know I will paint eggs again in the future – to see my progress if nothing else.
8″ x 8″ (20 x 20 cm) – oil on gessobord – commission
This was one of those very rare paintings that practically painted itself. It happens sometimes, not too often, and I wonder what is the reason for this. This is the second painting that did this: I am working on it… mixing and painting…, and suddenly it informs me – I think I am done, thanks! 🙂
I absolutely love my patron for whom this is painted. C.B. contacted me through my online gallery and basically said some variation of the following: I like your style, why won’t you paint something you like and I will buy it. I nearly fainted – the best art patron in the world!
Painting this was smooth and logical and presented very few problems. I did have a little bit of a fuss with strawberries – I did not nail the color right away, and the texture was a challenge. It was an interesting problem to paint graphite and pen drawing in oil. I had fun with that.
The only difficulty I had was coming up with a title. Polling family members yielded several possibles, none of which had a WOW factor. I did a crowd-sourcing thing on Facebook (again), and what a great idea it was – I got a dozen excellent titles. Combining ideas from 3 or 4 different people I came up with this – What I Drew Last Summer.
And here’s the sketch that got painted in this composition. I drew this in cafe Metropolis while drinking tea and sketching with my friend Don Colley.
8″ x 10″ (20 x 25 cm) – oil on gessobord – commission
Finished it today. At least signed it! Showed it to the client and she likes it! What a great thing! It is now drying, then will get oiled out and studied with great precision – I already see two spots that need some touching up, – then varnish and done.
This was probably the most challenging painting I ever attempted. Was even harder than the crinkled paper! Are you seeing all these ellipses? Those who are curious enough can count them and let me know.
The client asked me – How can you stand to let your pictures go? After all you put into them?
That’s a great question! I remember time when it was hard to part with artwork I made, but it changed. Some time around 2011 I started thinking of myself as a professional artist. This is what professionals do – we make artwork and we let it go into the world. That is if we are so lucky that the world wants to take our works.
And yet they never leave completely, do they, these sold paintings, commissioned images, pieces of our imagination? I may be working on a passage and it would be a slow going, and then I’d remember – I’ve done this in Fiddlesticks or in Waiting for Adam. I learned something invaluable in every painting. And then there’s another thing… I flew over France on my way to Israel a couple of months ago and I thought: one of my paintings is down there in Normandy. And I heard some news from Fresno CA the other day and thought: ah yes one of my paintings is there in Fresno – how about it…
So yes, I am happy to let them go. And to be paid for them too.
6″ x 6″ (15 x 15 cm) oil on gessobord panel
Something was right about this idea, or composition, or colors, or whatever… because it painted like a dream. Easy and smooth, without difficulties or usual anxiety, the colors and shapes just played along agreeably and it was all finished before I was ready to make a conscious decision about that. Ha! – it was ready to be signed.
But then I realized that I don’t have a title. I did not panic… so it would take me a day or several to think of it. But a good title was eluding me… I made my family think of the title… no, it was not happening for them either. After a few days of struggle with something that is usually so easy I made a decision – I would crowd-source it. So I put the painting on Facebook and called out to my friends.
In 8 hours I had 23 gorgeous titles! I had titles from as far as Australia, Singapore, Ireland, Israel, Canada, East and West coasts…. In the end I chose the title that came from two blocks away. Mary Lanigan Russo, my friend and neighbor and an urban sketcher from Chicago, suggested “Yesterdays”. A couple of hours later Jim Bumgarner, an urban sketcher from Tri-Cities WA, suggested “All My Sorrows Seem so Far Away” and thus settled any doubts. I have amazing friends!
8″ x 10″ (20 x 25 cm) oil on gessobord panel
Just apples to try a different technique. And a tongue in a cheek joke as an afterthought. Coming up with a title was harder than painting it. As sure as god made little apples… an apple a day… All of this was so trite that I was very tempted to title this Untitled. Every self respecting artist has something called Untitled. But then my husband came up with A Garden of Eve, and I loved it, and of course took it a step further.