Monday, April 22, 2013

Butler Park

This is from Day Two of the workshop with Kathleen Galligan - a wild, cool and windy day! So different from the hot day before at Anastasia. It was the sort of day to send easels and pastels flying if you were not careful - but a pretty little park and boat ramp along the intracoastel waterway. This was done on my usual 9x12 Art Spectrum paper using a variety of pastels.

Saturday, April 13, 2013


More catching up, but back at the end of February I took a 3-day plein air workshop with Kathleen Galligan here in St. Augustine. Plein air is still a struggle, but it's also fun to try out. The first day of our workshop was hot and sunny, and our location was Anastasia State Park, one of my favorite places in St. Augustine located on Anastasia Island. The painting opportunities there are endless, as are the birding opportunities!

But I *hate* being out in the hot sun, especially in mid-day, so I chose to set up underneath the roof of a picnic pavillion, as did several others. So it became less a matter of "what vistas do I want to try to paint?" and more a matter of "what can I see from this picnic pavillion that I can turn into a painting of sorts?"  :-)

So the above is my work from the day. I'm not crazy about it - the shadows need some muting and the greens need a hint of variations with other colors. On the other hand I do like the sky, LOL. But since I'm not crazy about it I've just set it aside at this point. We'll see if I decide to do anything with it in the future, but more likely it will be just onward and forward.

Done on my usual 9x12 Art Spectrum, cream color.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

At the Arboretum

The first weekend in February we had our FCPS paint-out day at the Jacksonville Arboretum. This was February after all, and the temperatures were in the 30s when we first arrived there early in the morning, and people had on their hats and coats and gloves, and even long johns! But it's Florida as well and by late morning it had warmed up to the low 60s and was a glorious day for painting out of doors.

I had never been to the arboretum before, but it's certainly a true gem in the area. Most of us set up our easels at spots along the walking trail that surrounds the small central lake. Normally I'm drawn to water as a subject, despite my inadequacies with painting it!

But I was on a tight time schedule on this day. As soon as the paint-out ended I was heading up to Hilton Head to spend a few days visiting with friends. And I struggle so with water. So I decided on a slightly different scene, and chose to do these trees, not that that was not a struggle as well, LOL.

This is a little bit smaller than I usually work, and was done on an 8x10 Ampersand pastel board. Various pastels as usual.

Sunday, April 07, 2013

For Maggie Price - RIP

My poor blog. It's been neglected lately. Of course my art has been neglected a lot too, but I *have* done some art work - just struggling to get it posted. But I figured I would finally make a start. We had a paint-out yesterday with the First Coast Pastel Society, at the Nature Preserve at the University of North Florida.

We were all saddened to have learned of the death of Maggie Price the day before. Maggie was a huge luminary in the pastel world, and a warm and lovely woman. I took a workshop with Maggie a few years ago and it was one of the best workshops ever. I recall one day Maggie did a demo painting of a rushing stream coursing over a bunch of boulders. She wanted us all to work on rocks, and claimed most people wound up making their rocks look like potatoes. So throughout the day she kept saying, "No potatoes! No potatoes!"

So when I found this big rock on the island I decided I had to make it my subject, and to do my best to avoid the potato look. Maggie, I hope I succeeded.

Since this is my first post in so long I decided to show sort of a progression of the growth of the painting.

Preliminary sketch and laying in some of the darks - to catch the shadows in plein air before the light shifted too much.

Filling in more shading on the objects, and the background.

More in the water and the foreground, and the objects.

Working more on the rock.

Working on the ground in the forest,

Mostly finished.

And the final painting again. Now that I've posted again I'll have to go back and start adding the pieces I've done in the last couple months - not all of them pastel!