Tag Archives: arizona

Just taking my time with two paintings

Tucson Palm Reader 6×8  oil on canvas board

Coming back from Tucson last month was a cool experience as an artist.  You put yourself into a different environment and challenge yourself to think different, see different and be different.  But are you really different?

When I stayed at someone’s place for about a week, it was comfortable surroundings.  More comfortable than my own place in New Mexico.  I had a great bed, cable tv, and WI-FI for my computer.  The only thing is, is  that I overdid it a bit with the tv.  I don’t own a tv personally because I knew how distracted it would be to my life.  But I was really into making up for lost time so I watched a lot of tv.  I then started feeling bad, about all the time I spent watching this nasty tube when I could have been painting.  I started feeling guilty and felt my soul slowly sinking into the abyss I didn’t want to happen.  Something had to be done.

So I went outside, even drove around Tucson to see what will inspire me to paint.  My first painting was done at a local art fair from my booth.  I thought that this would be a good start to welcome my visit.  I worked on “Tuscon Palm Reader” from the booth and finished it a few weeks later back home in New Mexico.  I really enjoy the purples and rough little jagged edges of the mountains.  The palm tree was a nice touch, because it gives the viewer a sense of place.  Without that palm, the scene could be a dozen places.  I wanted to take my time with this piece.  My next piece done a few days later became “Tucson Cliffs”.

Tucson Cliffs 6×8  oil on canvas board

This painting was a direct result of landscape hunting for a while.  I went up to the foothills where there were some upscale galleries and a beautiful sunset coming down on the Catalina Mountains.  There were just a simple array of oranges and purples when I finished part one in Tucson.  When I got back home, I tightened the shadows, made more distinct strokes, light and dark, too add some of my own personality to the piece while “taking my time”.

So normally when you’re in a plein air state of mind, you want to just get the basic colors and shapes at the scene, then paint a larger version when you get back to your home or studio and fill in the details and your own personal impressions that completes the piece.  I haven’t painted it larger, just over the same little painting, because I wasn’t ready to paint a larger version.  I’m still comfortable with the small side but will try to expand on that, to paint larger.  This will help my development as an artist.  I guess flirting with your discomfort zone will help you grow, who knows.

I just have to keep it going, hopefully this will be a great start to the new year.

Valentine’s Day Overated?

I've been thinking about holidays lately, which are the essential and which can we do without.  Valentine's Day was of course invented by Hallmark, a brilliant concept, makes you think if there should be an artist holiday so people can spend money on artwork like Valentine Day cards.  I think that everyday should be like Valentine's Day and Christmas, this world would be a happier place.  Do we really need holidays to dictate our behavior, like "Wow , V-day, time to be loving and get all kinds of gifts to my honey"  well what about the other 364 days?  What do you think?  

Sedona Moon
"Sedona Moon"