Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Lincoln Street - 12 x 12 inches - Oil on canvas

I enjoy doing architectural paintings and especially enjoy painting old houses with a lot of character. This painting depicts Lincoln Street which is a small street in Westford center along one side of the town common.

I work hard to keep all vertical lines straight so that the buildings don't appear to be tipping. The cars were painted with just a few strokes and I added strong reflections so they'd look shiny. Finally, I simplified the area at the end of the street into a dark and uniform shape to add a feeling of depth.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Guitar Club - Oil on canvas - 12 x 12 inches

A bandstand was recently built on the town common in Westford, MA. On this particular day, the "Guitar Club", a group of high school kids, took turns performing during the weekly Farmers Market. The afternoon light was strong and created dramatic shadows around the figures. I purposely tried to keep my brushstrokes loose and impressionistic. This painting brings me right back to that October day with the warm sun, the music, and the crowd on the common enjoying a perfect fall day.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Summer Crowds - Oil on canvas - 12 x 12 inches

I haven't posted for over a week as we had an ice storm that crippled much of New England. Unfortunately, I was without power for 6 days! I've had electricity for less than 48 hours and we're now in the midst of a major snowstorm. I figured I'd better update this blog before I lose power again :)

I was getting ready to post this painting and noticed that I didn't have a shadow under the most prominent cherry stem. I don't know how I could have missed it the first time around. Most artists have an excellent eye with the ability to see shapes, values and colors easily. However, it is easy to become blind to your own work. For that reason, I almost always ask someone to critique my work. My kids are my best critics. I've modified many paintings based on their suggestions. Another trick is to put a painting away for a few weeks ... the next time you see it, you'll have fresh eyes.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Three's a Crowd - 12 x 12 inches - Oil on canvas

These nectarines were sitting on my kitchen counter in a blue bowl. They caught my eye as the blue bowl really makes the orange color "sing". I played with how the nectarines are "facing" as I manipulated their placement in the bowl. The top nectarine is "looking" directly at the viewer while the other two face inward. I also added a bit of yellow to the inside rim of the bowl to "warm" up the color and add some visual interest. I thought this painting was a fairly realistic depiction of three nectarines but a friend commented, "Those are great apples." :)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Bog - 12 x 12 inches - Oil on Canvas

There is a cranberry bog not far from where I live...a great place to walk, bird watch, skip rocks and just soak up the sun. I painted this landscape on location, or, "en plein air". On this particular day, the weather was warm, the winds were light and I wasn't bothered by bugs...a perfect day to set up an easel and get totally absorbed in the process of creating.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Happy Days 1958 - 12 x 12 inches - Oil on canvas

I spotted this car at a used car dealership in town. I believe this is a '58 Chevy Impala. It caught my eye so I stopped and snapped a variety of pictures. I debated about how much of the car to paint and at what angle. In the end, I settled on this view as I really liked the headlights and that massive chrome grill.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Mixed Company - 12 x 12 inches - Oil on canvas

Apple picking has become an annual tradition in my family so I usually have an abundance of apples in the fall. I arranged these apples, decided on an overhead viewpoint, and then used a strong light source to create interesting highlights and deep shadows.