Monday, September 19, 2016

Joyful Noise - 8 x 8 inches - sea glass collage

Joyful Noise - 8 x 8 inches - sea glass collage
I created this collage a while back and never posted it so today is the day!  I’ve been an avid sea glass collector since taking a trip to France just over 10 years ago.  I wandered on a Mediterranean beach for several hours and kept finding beautiful tumbled pieces of glass.  When I returned home, I turned my handful of glass into a collage that has become one of my favorite mementos from that trip.

Since that time, I’ve managed to find more sea glass closer to home.  “Joyful Noise” was created using sea glass that I collected from beaches in New England.  I have not altered the glass in any way – the pieces are exactly as I found them - tumbled smooth by the ocean over many years. This collage is one of a kind and can never be duplicated.  Each piece of glass has a unique shape, size and color.  This collage contains 38 pieces of sea glass.

“Joyful Noise” is 8 x 8 inches framed and is available at Artists Corner & Gallery in West Acton, MA.  You can also purchase it directly from me by clicking here.  Additional photos are below.

In other news, I’m giving a painting demonstration on Thursday October 13 starting at 7 p.m. at the Parish Center for the Arts in Westford, MA.  I hope you’ll be able to join me for a fun evening!  




Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Dunes I & II plus Naming Contest Winner!

I've selected the winner of my "name the painting" contest.  See the end of this post for all the details.

I've been spending a lot of time in Newburyport, MA this month and knew I wanted to do a lot of plein air painting.  I decided to buy a set of gouache paints and try my hand at them.  Gouache is very similar to watercolor but the paints are fairly opaque.  Unlike watercolors, there is no need to preserve the white of the paper.  One advantage is that they dry quickly.  One disadvantage is that they dry quickly!  Yes, the quick drying is a tremendous advantage for transporting the painting and making sure it doesn't smear.  However, the working time is extremely short so not much mixing can take place on the paper.  

In any case, I love painting sand dunes and these are my first few attempts in gouache.


Dunes I - 5 x 7 inches - gouache on watercolor paper

Dunes I - 5 x 7 inches - gouache on watercolor paper, matted
Dunes I is a 5x7 inch Gouache on Watercolor paper painting that is presented in an 8x10 mat.  Click the buy now button below to purchase. (please note this painting won't ship until October 1).



Dunes II - 5 x 7 inches - gouache on watercolor paper


Dunes II - 5 x 7 inches - gouache on watercolor paper, matted

Dunes II is a 5x7 inch Gouache on Watercolor paper painting that is presented in an 8x10 mat.  Click the buy now button to purchase. (please note, this painting won't ship until October 1)



NAME THE PAINTING CONTEST - WINNER!


Thank you to all those who submitted names for my "Name the Painting" contest.   Here are all the names that were submitted (in alphabetical order):

Afloat and Aloft
Anticipation
Away with Me
Beyond the Sea
Cam Jam
Capturing Camden
Classic Camden
Come Sail Away
Dancing at Anchor
Floating Jewel
Floating Still
Harbor Day
Harbor town
Harbor View
Harboring Sailboats in Camden
Harbour serenity
High Tide Peace
Jewel of the Coast
LOBSTAH Day Boat Tripping!
Mass of Masts
Moored
On the Water
Peaceful Journey
Peaceful Summer Day
Quiet Sails
Red as a Lobster
Red Baron
Red Devil
Red Rider
Serenity Now
Slipless in Seattle
Still Waters Run Deep
Sun salutation
Tides
Tomorrow
Tranquility
Waiting
Where the Winds Blow

(many apologies if I missed an entry!)

There were several submissions that I really liked: "Red as a Lobster" (quirky, made me smile although I would have changed it to "Red as a Lobstah"), "Serenity Now" (this made me laugh and Seinfeld fans will understand why), as well as "Classic Camden" (good solid name that describes the scene).

But, the winning entry that I liked the best was...drum roll please...."Cam Jam."   I liked the reference to Camden as well as the "jam" which reminded me of a traffic jam and the crowded harbor.  Congratulations to Marie D. of Lowell, MA!   I will be sending out your petite painting prize in the next few days.  Thanks to everyone who played along!





Tuesday, September 6, 2016

The Knob plus some sketches

"The Knob" - 8 x 8 inches - oil on canvas
I painted this at the beginning of the summer after a trip to Cape Cod with some friends.  We drove to "The Knob" which is small peninsula near Falmouth, MA.  We walked down a path through thick brush only to emerge in a small open space studded with rocks where your entire vista is ocean (technically, it is Buzzard's Bay).  We timed our visit just before sunset and were a bit surprised to see a crowd of 25-30 people anticipating the same event.  As the sun slipped just below the horizon, everyone clapped and cheered! 

I mentioned that I was doing a "Doodle-A-Day" challenge with a group of friends (known as the "6-Pack") for the month of August.  Spoiler alert to my 6-Packers who read my blog!  I mentioned that I'd share a few of my sketches.

I decided to use the alphabet to help me decide what to sketch each day.  So, the first day I sketched my Attic, the second day I sketched my Bedroom, third day was my Cooper, my dog, etc.  I sketched scenes around my home and wanted to work on perspective.  I sketched using a marker and most were done with in 10 minutes or less and I didn't fuss over them.  The 6-Pack is gathering later this month to eat, drink, be merry and to reveal our sketchbooks!

Here is a sampling of a few of my favorite sketches:









And my "Name the Painting Contest" continues for one more week:

I couldn't think of a suitable name for this painting (see below) so I'm asking for help.  I will give away one of my petite paintings to the person who comes up with the winning name.  To win, you must be a subscriber to my mailing list.  You can sign up here: http://www.lauriegmiller.com/contact.html and then send your name suggestion to: Laurie@LaurieGMiller.com  

I will announce the winner on September 13.  I can't wait to hear the names everyone comes up with!





Sunday, August 28, 2016

"Ocean Dip III" - 11 x 14 inches - oil on canvas

"Ocean Dip III" - 11 x 14 inches - oil on canvas, framed
I vacationed in Kennebunkport, Maine several years ago and watched a young woman toss a stick in the water for her yellow lab.   He swam back and forth in the rocky cove and never tired of the game.  I was glad I had my camera and snapped as many pictures as I could.  

I painted the dog first since I figured that if the dog didn't turn out to my liking, there was no point in continuing with the rest of the painting!  Once I was happy with the dog, I moved onto the rocky coast and lastly the water.  This is my third painting using this reference photo and I'm sure it won't be the last!

My "name the painting" contest is still open (until Sept 13).  Thank you to those who already sent in suggestions.  For those who don't know, I will give away one of my mini paintings to the person who comes up with the winning name for my painting of Camden Maine Harbor:  


Send your name suggestion to Laurie@LaurieGMiller.com.  You must be a subscriber to my mailing list (you can sign up by clicking here).

"Ocean Dip III" is an 11x14 inch oil on canvas painting presented in a wood floater frame (see additional photos below).  It is available at the Whiffle Tree Candle Co in Billerica, MA or directly from me at www.LaurieGMiller.com









Monday, August 22, 2016

"Camden" (working title) - 12 x 12 inches - oil on canvas - Name and Win!

Camden (working title) - 12 x 12 inches - oil on canvas
I couldn't think of a suitable name for this painting so I'm asking for help.  I will give away one of my petite paintings to the person who comes up with the winning name.  To win, you must be a subscriber to my mailing list.  You can sign up here: http://www.lauriegmiller.com/contact.html and then send your name suggestion to: Laurie@LaurieGMiller.com  

I will announce the winner on September 13.

I can't wait to hear the names everyone comes up with!

You never know when inspiration will strike.  The reference photo I used to create this painting was posted on Facebook by Kelli Costa who is the owner of Gallery Seven in Maynard, MA.  I contacted Kelli and asked permission to use her photo.  She only had one request -- send her a photo of the completed painting..done!


I pulled out the palette knife for this one since there is so much detail in a harbor scene and I wanted to keep it loose and fresh.  In the early stages of this painting, I stayed true to the reference.  By the end, I had changed some colors and details to make the composition more pleasing and balanced. 


"Camden (name TBD)" is a 12 inch square oil on canvas painting presented in a wood floater frame (see additional photos below).  It is available directly from me at www.LaurieGMiller.com 







Sunday, August 14, 2016

Red Pear - 6 x 6 inches - oil on canvas - SOLD

"Red Pear" - 6 x 6 inches - oil on canvas - SOLD


I actually painted this pear back in April and realized that I never posted it.  I've always loved painting pears as they seem human-like with their lovely curves.  I started this painting with a bright green background to add some luminosity to the reddish pear.  

In other news, I'm doing a "Doodle a Day" challenge with a group of friends.  This started when a friend mentioned to me that she wanted to get back into the swing of painting and doing something creative on a regular basis.  I said that she should keep it low key to start, no pressure, and just do a quick pencil sketch or doodle.  She loved the idea and thought it would be fun to open it up to "The 6-Pack" which is what my friends call our little group.  So, the "6-Pack" has taken on the challenge for the month of August.  I'll post some of my doodles in September when the challenge ends.   






Monday, August 8, 2016

"Pretty in Pink" - 6 x 6 inches - oil on canvas

"Pretty in Pink" - 6 x 6 inches - oil on canvas, framed

I can never go for too long without painting a donut!  They are a fun, happy food and make me smile :)

"Pretty in Pink" is a 6 inch square oil on canvas painting presented in a wood floater frame (see additional photos below).  It is available directly from me at www.LaurieGMiller.com 




Monday, August 1, 2016

"Brookline Ave" - 20 x 20 inches - oil on canvas - SOLD

"Brookline Ave" - 20 x 20 inches - oil on canvas - SOLD
Last summer I stayed at a hotel on Brookline Avenue in Boston.  The hotel looked into Fenway park and also had a great view of my beloved Citgo sign (which I have painted several times before). 

I almost always start my paintings with a solid background color.  This time, I blocked in areas using complementary colors instead of the final color I would use.  For example, the main building was blocked in using a blue color and if you look at the final painting, the building is primarily orange.  When applying the the orange paint, I allowed some of the blue under painting to show through to give a nice little pop of color.




This painting was completed using a palette knife so the paint application is thick and textural and creates a fairly abstract image.  Some close ups are below:



 Additional images are below.












Monday, July 25, 2016

"If I Fell" - 6 x 6 inches - oil on canvas - SOLD

"If I Fell" - 6 x 6 inches - oil on canvas
You might not believe that I try to limit (unsuccessfully) sugar in my diet which is probably why I'm always wanting to paint sweet stuff!  If I can't eat it, I might as well paint it.  And then eat it.  Sigh.

If you follow my posts, you may remember that I use Beatles songs if I'm having trouble coming up with a title for a painting.  So, I thought "If I Fell" was a good name for this petite painting.

"If I Fell" is a 4x4 inches oil on canvas painting presented in a wood floater frame (see additional photos below).  




Monday, July 18, 2016

"Oreos" - 6 x 6 inches - oil on canvas

"Oreos" - 6 x 6 inches - oil on canvas
Oreo cookies and a glass of milk.  I've certainly eaten my share over the course of my lifetime.  I had some recently and they did not disappoint!

The small sliver of white creme between the two dark wafers - that was my entire motivation for painting this little vignette.  I painted the chocolate wafers first and left a small gap on the canvas and then filled in the white creme with the final brush strokes.    

Oreos is a 6x6 inches oil on canvas painting presented in a wood floater frame (see additional photos below).  It is available at www.LaurieGMiller.com.






Sunday, July 10, 2016

"The Dark Side" - 4 x 4 inches - oil on canvas

"The Dark Side" - 4 x 4 inches - oil on canvas
My "Hershey Kiss" phase continues with a dark chocolate kiss.  I wanted the challenge of a colored wrapper (even though you only see an occasional peek of the outside of the purple wrapper).  When working with my sweet subject, I open the wrapper and crinkle it around until I'm happy with the resulting shape for my composition.  I will sometimes spend more time designing my composition than actually executing the painting.  From experience I know that a bad composition can never be overcome by technically well executed brush strokes.  More photos of "The Dark Side" and purchase info is below.

In other news, I taught a painting class to 4 girls from ages 8 to 14.  Since I recently painted an ice cream cone, I thought they might enjoy doing one as well.  We talked a lot about form, shadows, highlights and textures.  They each decided which flavor ice cream to paint and I think they turned out super cute. 



"The Dark Side" is framed in a wood floater frame (see photos below) and can either be purchased at The Whiffle Tree in Billerica, MA, or, directly from me by clicking here.