10/30/2008

Pompeiian Peaches


Go Here to Bid
Pastel on Black Paper, 10" x 10"
Three days ago I went to the Pompeii exhibition at the
National Gallery of Art in DC. It was very impressive.
They had some mesmerizingly beautiful sculptures, and
some wonderful frescoes and small pieces of paintig.

This started out as a set up with a picture of a painting by
Luigi Lucioni (one of my favorite aritsts - fabulous realist
paintings, deceased) behind the peaches. Gradually it
evolved into this picture, which appears to be a rip off from
a Roman fresco, but is merely inspired by one. It was fun
building up the pastel, spraying it, and see what would
happen after that.

Thanks for visiting today.

10/28/2008

Two Shells and Velvet


Pastel and Charcoal on Paper, 14" x 17
I just love these two shells. The colors in them are so different -
one is cold and the other is warm. The nautilus shell is such a
challenge, with its overall gray lustre and cold pink highlight.
While the conch is accented with an almost screaming flamingo
pink. I liked the contrast of these colors with the dark background
and the rich wine-colored velvet - I love those velvet highlights.
This was a fun and difficult picture to paint, but I'm pretty happy
with it over all.

10/22/2008

Head of Hypnos


SOLD
Pastel, Charcol and Conte Crayon on White Paper
This is a demo drawing I did for my students in my "Painterly
Pastel" class at the Art League School. Usually I find I find it hard
to draw in front of people, but because it was a holiday there
were only three people in attendance that day. Amazingly, I was
actuallly able to concentrate, and produced this drawing, which
I actually like - a lot!
Hypnos was the Greek god of sleep, and this bronze head, which
isn't really this color (I like to mix it up when I am doing this type
of drawing....) has a wing coming out of the side of his head. It just
drives me crazy. I must have at least five pictures of this sculpture
from different angles. I just love it! I find it inspiring and beguiling
at the same time. This is the first time I've ever felt that I did it
justice, actually.
I've been in an art funk for a while, and haven't been posting -
obviously. Hopefully I'm coming out of it now, and will be back
to presenting some works for your consideration, if not daily,
at least a few times a week.
Thanks for visiting!

9/30/2008

Landscape by a River


10" x 12", Oil Monotype on Paper SOLD
This was really fun. I used Yupo paper as the plate for my
monotype, and watersoluble oils for my paints. You can
lay down a thin layer of slow-drying medium (it has to me
the kind made for watersoluble oils) with a credit card and
work into that. I roll the paint on, different colors in
different areas, and then manipulate it with old brushes,
sponges, sticks, my fingers, whatever..........it's really fun.
Thanks for visiting today.

9/27/2008

Blue Harmony


Offering 5 Giclee Prints for sale, each archivally
printed on Hahnemuhle rag art paper, sized at 8" x 9",
with image at 6" x 8" as depicted// For sale> Email:
priscillacalhoun317@hotmail.com to purchase @ $50.00.
There are three copies of this giclee print left.
This is a painting of my daughter, wearing an
Indian wedding shawl. Her hair is not really this
red! However, I thought that it harmonized so
beautifully witht the colors in the shawl, and the
reflected color on her skin, that I would pretend
it was. She actually does have a lot of natural red
in her hair, that really comes out in the sunlight,
and has increased as she's gotten older. This is
one of my favorite paintings I have ever done of
her.
Thank you for visiting.

9/24/2008

Demo Essence Sketch of Figure Model


NFS
7.5" x 11.5", Essence on Canson Paper
This is a demonstration that I did in my
workshop at The Art League School. This
is why it is not finished. The focus of the
class was gestural painting. We were deli-
berately trying to keep things loose.
Academic realism was not our goal.

We had a great time! For and explanation
of essence, look at previous posts.

Thanks for visiting.

9/13/2008

Man from the Back in Essence


NFS
5" x 9", Essence on Canson Paper
Another example of the technique
I will be teaching in my workshop.
It looks rather like pastel or gouache
when it is dry, because of the lack
of oil in the paint. I really like this
way of painting.
Did I mention that you can paint an
entire grisaille and then paint an entire
picture in color over that? So much
fun....

9/12/2008

Lesli Modeling in Class


24" x 14", Essence on Canson, SOLD

I really was pleased with the colors in this
piece, particularly considering that I did
it from a black and white photo that I had
taken of the model after class. I find that
that is a good exercise. It frees you to be
more imaginative with "skin color".

Now, how about Bonnard......see any
"skin color" there? Then again, perhaps
he thought he was painting skin colors.
We'll never know, but whatever it was,
it certainly was sublime, and we are
luckier for it.

9/09/2008

Seated Model & Monochromatic Sketch of Walking Nude



Upper- Essence on Canson Paper,
Lower - Oil on Vellum Tracing Paper
Because this vellum paper has a treated surface,
and is impervious to oils, it is possible to
paint on it with paint right out of the tube.
The upper study was done from life,
however, the lower drawing was
actually done not from life, but from
a tiny figure in Eadward Muybridge's
classic text The Human Figure in Motion,
which is full of hundreds of photos of nudes,
all of which were taken using stop-action
photography in the late 19th, and early 2oth
centuries, against gridded walls.
He also took photographs of horses running (one
of which Degas used as a model for one of his sculptures),
and of birds flying.
Essence, and also painting on vellum, are two
of the techniques I will be teaching
next week in my Gesturing the Figure in Oils
workshop at the Art League School in
Alexandria, Virginia. - We will be working from
live models however.

Thanks for visiting today.

9/08/2008

Incomplete Flower Study


Go Here to Bid
3.5" x 6", Gouche on WC Paper
I'm not sure what this flower is. I did it
from a photo in a flower catalogue online,
but a just love the colors, and actually
love the unfinished quality of it. I don't think
I am meant to paint big, histrionic paintings.
I think I was probably a monk in a former
lifetime illuminating manuscripts in a
monastery, full of flowers and gold leaf
ornamentation. Things like that make
me happy.
Thanks for visiting today.
Tomorrow I am going to get back to
oil painting, and also I need to get back
to the figure.

9/03/2008

Blue Breakers


4" x 5", Gouache on Plate Bristol Board

I did not find this picture easy to do. At one point I actually
rinsed it off under the tap. That was a good thing, as it revealed
(as it can do), some subtle tones and textures I wouldn't have
seen had I not done that. I really wanted it to be semi-abstract,
as I love a balance of realism and abstract. I find that very
intriguing.

As it is, I am fairly satisfied with this effort, as I absolutely love
the colors. If you haven't tried gouache (opaque watercolor) yet,
you ought to give it a try. You don't actually have to run out and
buy a "set" of gouache if you have a set of watercolors. All you need
is a tube of Chinese White, which I learned today was invented in
1834 (and certainly made good use of by Turner, who left no less
than 20,000 works of art at his death!).

You can mix the Chinese White with the watercolor. This is actually
how gouache (then known as "bodycolour" ) was originally done in
the 18th century. Hmm.....interesting. Anyway, it is really fun to
work with, because you can use it transparently or opaquely, and
any "mistake" can be covered up. It is kind of like oils, really, except
that you really can't "blend" it so much, and it does tend to dry a bit
lighter than it is when it is wet.

Thanks for visiting today.

8/31/2008

"Essence" Nude Sketch of a Very Pale Model


7" x 9", "Essence" on "Sand" Canson Paper,
SOLD
This sketch was done in a technique called
"Peinture a l'essence" that was commonly used
by Degas and Toulouse-Lautrec. I think I may
have mentioned this previously a few months
back. To do this, you have to soak the oil out of
the paint on blotters or paper towels overnight.
Then, you transfer the paint to a paletter, and
use it, without adding any medium (this is very
important), but just diluting with solvent ("essence")
means "solvent" in French). This enables you to paint
right on any paper, without preparing it with a ground,
such as gesso, rabbit skin glue, or shellac.
The effect is a very mat one, and sometimes people
think these paintings are pastels. Toulouse-Lautrec's
famouse paintings on cardboard in the National
Gallery were all done this way. And, while they are
more than one hundred years old, there is still no
oil stain around the images.
I am going to be teaching a workshop in this soon.
Thanks for visiting today.

8/30/2008

Founders Beach, Isla Morada


6" x 8", Gouache on Canson WC Paper NFS

This is a VERY loose interpretation of a beach I snorkeled
off of in the Keys. I saw some amazing Parrot Fish there
(they're the ones that have the beaks and eat the coral that
gets processed by their digestive systems into sand...what goes
around comes around.....very literally in this case). The photo
I posted before I went away was of a Princess Parrot Fish - one
of my all-time favorite fish to see. I did notice, though, that these
fish were very skittish and kept running away from me, while in
the Caribbean they are really laid back, and let you follow them
around for an hour. They come in many different colors - bright
orange, red and green, and the turquoise of the Queen and Princess.

Thanks for visiting today. I think by Monday I'll have this out of
my system.

8/28/2008

Pink and Yellow Cloud off of Key West




5" x 5", Gouache on Strathmore Bristol,
This cloud plus the silhouette of all the trees really
caught my eye. I really want to do this in oil, I think
I could do it justice in that medium. This is just a sketch
but I had fun doing it.

Back View Sketch of Seated Model in Drypoint


3 1/2" x 5", Drypoint Etching Bid Here
I didn't have much time to work today, so
I drew and printed this sketch from a photo
that I had taken of my favorite model, Sharon,
a few years ago.
I used a zinc plate, so there was some nice
plate tone, and I was pleased with the line
quality and suggestion of darkness in the
background.
Thanks for visiting today.

8/26/2008

Gestural Figure Study in Red and White Conte on Blue Paper


Red & White Conte on Blue Paper,
11" x 14" , NFS
I really enjoyed working from this model.
She is so statuesque. Gesture drawing is
so much fun, and good for you too! So many
students are afraid to let go and try it - they
don't realize how much it can improve your
drawing.......

8/24/2008

Storm Off the Keys


Gouache on Canson WC Paper, 4 1/2" x 7" Bid Here
I just got back for the Florida Keys on Saturday. We spent two days
dealing with a hurricane, which was at times exciting, at other times
disappointing. But it also yielded mind-gripping images such as
the one above, which I did from memory completely, so of course
it isn't as fantastic as it was in real life.
I was five miles out off the coast of Key Largo, snorkeling from an
excursion boat. We had all just finished and returned to the boat,
when a storm pulled up really very fast. It literally started raining
as the last person climbed up the ladder into the boat. But as we
made our way back to shore (we had been at the John Pennecamp
Natural Park, which is the only great barrier reef in the United States),
and moved away from the storm, there was this amazing limpid green
water backed by a threatening black sky. There was no blue, or visible
clouds. I just stuck those in there for artistic effect.
Thanks for visiting today.

8/11/2008

Gouche Fantasy of Summer in the Shenandoah


7 1/4" x 4 3/4", Gouache on Plate Bristol Paper, Bid Here
I have always loved the Shenandoah mountains. To me they are a
magical place. I spent a lot of time there many years ago. My memories
of them are some of my most cherished. I go back to them time and
time again.
There is almost nothing as beautiful as a line of several
mountains (not depicted here), moving away from you in the distance,
getting fainter and fainter, and bluer and bluer, until you can't be certain
if you really see it or not - it almost looks transparent.
This is sort of a made-up picture. I had a small photograph. But it
was quite different from this. I also like working in gouache, for reasons
I have given previously.
This may be my last post for quite a while. I am leaving on Thursday
for vacation. I will be back on the 22nd, but as I'll be teaching on the 23rd,
and the 24th is Sunday, I doubt there will be anything here until at least
the 25th -- that is unless I can squeeze in a painting tomorrow, or the next
day with all the other things I have to do. I am taking a laptop with me, so
will not be completely out of reach.
Thanks for stopping by.

8/08/2008

Page of Small Gouache Landscape Sketches


Canson WC Sketchbook Page, 9" x 12", sketches
in varying sizes NFS
I'm going to be teaching a Gouache workshop
in about three weeks, so I thought I should just
get back in the swing of things as far as gouache
is concerned. These sketches were all done in
a Canson watercolor sketchbook, which is one
of my favorite things to work in. If the pictures
don't get too large the paper doesn't really
wrinkle too much.
I like to use gouache as a combination of
watercolor and the way it is supposed to be
used, as an opaque medium. I love the various
contrasts that can be gotten in that way. It is
also fun to squeegee down a layer of Aquapasto
first, and see what effects that has on your work.
I will also work sometimes on Canson papers, which
have such nice colors, if I feel like working on a
colored background.
The mountains are the Blue Ridge; the river is
the Potomac (two blocks from where I live); the
trees and sky are a park down the way from me.
I really love painting with this stuff. It is relaxing.

8/07/2008

Gouache Sketch after a Pontormo Fresco


7 1/4" x 9 1/2", Gouache on Canson WC
Notebook Paper

I have always loved this image - and certain
other things by Pontormo.

He was a really strange person. He lived in
a room that had no door, but only a window
to the outside, from which he entered and
left by a ladder. He kept a diary of everything
that he ate. He didn't like people, so he didn't
generally use models. If you look closely
his altarpieces, you will see that each person
is the same one, whether they are female, or
male, they all have the same face.
But I've always found this to be a particularly
delicate, almost celestial image. I just did a
quick sketch of it in gouache - some day I think
I'll do a longer study of it in oil.
Thanks for visiting today.

8/06/2008

Tribute to my most esteemed model, Sharon





These are three of the many pieces of artwork
I have done over the past fifteen years with
Sharon as my subject. She has been a never-
ending inspiration, and I just thought she
deserved a little bit of a tribute. The painting
on the top is not for sale, unless someone is willing
to pay me about $8000.00 for it (seriously).
The second piece is just some 2-3 minute gesture
poses on newsprint, and isn't in saleable condition.
The drawing above is in pencil on white sketch-weight
drawing paper. I did it as a portrait demonstration
exactly ten years ago. No one else has eyelids like
that. Her father was from Ireland, and I think it shows
in her soulful face. Thank you, Sharon.

8/02/2008

Ancient Greek Venus Fragment


Pastel and Chacoal Pencil on White Drawing
Paper, 8" x 10 1/2" ( w/1" margins),
I love this image, even though it is very high
key and the color is very subtle. I feel that it
highlights the line work that way. Line is very
powerful - something that I am always encouraging
my students to understand. Trying to master
line is a big part of learning to draw fluently.
Thanks for visiting today, and have a nice
weekend.

7/31/2008

Oil Sketch of Lesli Posing


Oil on Gesso- and Oil-Primed Rag Board, 9" x12",
SOLD
This was a really fast sketch, and it looks like it.
I did this from a photograph - not from life. I enjoy
doing that, although I always wish I had a model in
front of me. Unfortunately, my studio is too tiny to
accomodate one, so the only time I get a chance to
work from life is when I am teaching, or if I go to an
open life class (which I should do more often...).
If only there were a pill you could take that would
cause you to never have to sleep - I'd be first in
line.
Thanks for visiting today.

7/29/2008

St. John Day


Oil on Archival Card, laid down on board, 6" x 5 1/2",
SOLD
When I was in the Virgin Islands a few years ago I took a lot of
photographs. I am glad I did, for I never get tired of creating land-
scapes using them for inspiration. I never copy them - they are
just "memory-joggers".
I love the colors of the Caribbean, and the
way they change constantly when you are there.
The infinite number of blues never ceases to amaze and
inspire me, and they are so much
fun to play with when I am painting. I enjoy
the challenge of trying to suggest a grand space on a
small picture plane. But the process of painting is also a peasure,
because as I am creating, I am immersed in memories of the place,
and it is a very sensuous experience.

7/28/2008

Quick Gouache Sketch of Alan Posing in Class


Sepia and White Gouache on Light Brown Pastel Paper,
8 1/4" x 6 1/2", Bid Here
This is a quick study of one of my favorite all-time models, Alan
(he has dreads), in one of my favorite mediums, gouache. For those
of you who don't know, gouache is an opaque form of watercolor.
If you ever see the term "bodycolor", particularly in books about
drawings from the past (silverpoint, Renaissance, etc.), "bodycolor"
refers to white or colored gouache.
Gouache is wonderful, because you can use it both transparently
and opaquely, so it is virtually impossible to make a mistake -
at least that you can't cover up!! I love it for quick sketches like
this, and I prefer it over watercolor for painting in water media
in general, primarily because I don't have the skill in it that someone
like Belinda del Pesco has. She rocks with watercolor!
Thanks for visiting today. I hope you are surviving the heat,
wherever you are!

7/24/2008

Tiger Lilies


Oil Color Monotype, approx. 5" x 6", $45.00, Go Here


This quick sketch of some tiger lilies was done from some
that grew near my yard. I like doing monotypes outside.
I paint them on metal, plastic, mylar, Yupo watercolor
paper - I even once painted one on a piece of gessoed
thin wood - it actually went through the press with
the printmaking paper very well. I never print them
by hand. Well, not since I got my press in 1976.


This was fun because of the challenge of getting the little
purple pieces to hang off of the stamens (?) just so. I have
always been fascinated by these flowers; they are much
hardier than daylilies. Daylilies are very beautiful, but die
about twenty minutes after you pick them. Hard to paint
a picture quite that fast (unless you're Delacroix.....).

Thanks for visiting today.

(I'm still working on that painting - I haven't forgotten!)

7/23/2008

Side Yard in Blacksburg


Oil Monotype on Fine Printmaking Paper,8" x 6",
$200.00, Go Here
This very painterly monotype was done from partly from memory
and partly from my memory of a beautiful place where I lived several
summers in Blacksburg, Virginia during the 1980's when my husband
was going to architecture school. It was like the Garden of Eden there.
I will always remember it as being one of the happiest times in my life.

7/22/2008

Unfinished Painting of Sophie in a Silk Kimono


Oil Painting on Gesso and Oil Ground
15/3/4" x 22 1/4" NOT FOR SALE YET


I thought that today, since I never publish progress
pictures, that I would publish a picture of a partially-
completed painting that I did today. It is painted on a
piece of 100% rag mat board that I had previously
covered with two coats of gesso, allowed to dry, and then
covered with a neutral sort of mushroom-color oil paint
mixed with Liquin for a ground.
You can kind of see the ground color in parts of the
feet that are not painted yet, and in the upper left hand corner,
which also is not painted yet. This is not the greatest photograph
of the painting, unfortunately. I have a very good digital camera,
but sometimes something gets lost in the translation.....
I did a line drawing of the composition, using a ball point pen,
squaring up a few areas that were particularly challenging.
I like to use ball point pen, because you can paint right over
it, and the paint and solvent don't budge it, so your drawing
stays put.
I'm planning on finishing this tomorrow, so you may
or may not see it again. We'll see how it goes. So far, I'm pretty
happy with it. We'll see how it turns out. I want to try and maintain
the "loose" quality of it. I like that.

7/21/2008

Fountain Statue in a Park in New Orleans


Oil Color Monotype, 4" x 5 1/2", $90.00,
This piece was done from a photograph that I
took in New Orleans many years ago when I went
there to visit some dear friends. I was captivated
by this fountain, which had three figures.
I think I will do a triptych eventually.
If anyone is wondering about the scarcity of
posts here recently, it is just that life has been complicated
lately, with several ill friends, family obligations, much
teaching, and little time to paint. I am hoping some time
will open up this week, because I am dying to paint!
Thank you for visiting today.

7/16/2008

Quick Sketch of Alan Posing in Class


Pencil and White Gouache on Brown Paper,
6" x 8" , NFS
This is a quick sketch of Alan, one of the best
figure models I've ever known, in one of my
favorite quick sketching mediums - mechanical
pencil and aqua-flow brush with white gouache.
Fun! The lovely brown color of the paper didn't
come through too well in the photo, unfortunately.

7/14/2008

Liz's Reverie


Oil on Board, 6 1/4" x 7 1/2 SOLD
This is a portrait of a young woman who used to model
for my classes several years ago. She was a very good
model, and a very nice person, though a little taciturn.
She left for the Peace Corps - I think she went to Morocco -
and that was the last I saw of her. She had such an expressive
face. Wonderful to paint.
The kimono was lent to me by a good friend, and is from
the 1920's. It is really wild. It only comes to the waist, and
then has fringe that is about 18" long, all along the hem.
I think it was meant for the boudoir...........
Thanks for visiting today.
PS. I did not do this painting in just one day - I cannot
tell a lie.

7/12/2008

A Yellow Pear


Oil on Board, 4 3/4" x 6", $85.00 Go to eBay


I really love the yellows in this pear, and the contrast
with the blue background. Overall, I was pretty happy
with this painting. It was a nice break from some more
complicated paintings that I've been working on lately.

7/11/2008

Sunset over St. John II


Oil on Board, 1o" x 7" SOLD
This is another view that I am obsessed with. Probably because
I haven't been there in three years. I love the Caribbean. If someone
were to ask me where I would rather go right now than anywhere on
earth, and I could choose any place, it would be the Caribbean. It i
a magical, beautiful place.

The colors in this painting did not come out well in this photograph.
They were much more luminous. The yellow was yellower, and the
pink was pinker.

I had a strange experience today. I get Chris Bolmeier's blog post.
She's a fascinating character. Does good art, can write up a storm,
has a fantastic voice - multi-talented. Well, she suggested watching a YouTube
video with Karin Jurik laying out her palette. I love those
things, so I did watch it.

It was uncanny. One by one, I watched her lay out every single
color I use on my own palette!! I should have had Twilight Zone
music playing in my head. Our work is nothing alike. (I admire
hers very much.) But, we obviously both love to have a lot of color
to work with, because she had about fifty, just like I do, and just
about the same, exact colors! Weird....but interesting.

Thanks for visiting today, and have a nice weekend.

7/09/2008

Portrait of Mary-Elizabeth


Pastel & Carbon Pencil on Drawing Paper,
9" x 16", NFS

I love drawing Mary Elizabeth, her high,
round forehead would have been the envy
of every woman in the Renaissance. I did
this is an open life class, and was very happy
with the results. Usually I find it hard to
concentrate.

Mary is also a swimming coach, so she
is a very graceful and imaginative model,
and just wonderful to draw.

7/08/2008

The Eastern Shore at Midday


Oil Pastel w/ Van Eyck Painting Medium on White Acrylic-
Sized Paper, 9" x 7 7/8", $100.00 Bid Here
I have a set of Sennelier oil pastels - actually I have two - one that
I have never touched because it is so beautiful I can't bare to touch
it, and another that was bought over time; piece by piece, also a Holbein
here, a Sakura there, that's been used and used.
I just love this image,
and thought I would play around with it using oil pastels. The Senneliers
are so soft, they are literally like lipstick. The Holbeins - and I forgot to
mention the Caran d'Ache, are somewhat firmer, but still incredibly
smooth and satisfying to work with.
I will put some color down, and take a deerfoot brush ( these are
brushes that I used for blending in oil painting) and dip it into a
tube of Sennelier Van Eyck Painting Medium (gelatinous but delicate),
and you can push the oil pastel around with this, and blend it together.
It is really fun.
Sometimes I feel really serious about my work, and sometimes I think
it brings out my (caution: over-used word alert - ) "inner child". I'm
planning on doing a series of figure paintings next, and they are very
demanding, so that is probably why I am doing this, and why I did the
pears yesterday. Just something light, and.....entertaining.
Thanks so much for visiting today.

7/06/2008

Two Bosc Pears in a Blue Light


Oil on Gessoed Rag Board, 8" x 7 3/8", $100.00 Bid Here
These pears were painted on a piece of rag board that had been
covered with pink gesso. I love the slight irridescent appearance
caused by laying the blue glaze over the pink. I think one of the
reasons I love oil paint so much is that it is so versatile, and you
can do so many different things with it: use it thickly, smoothly,
tranluscently (called a "half-paste" - see Titian), transparently
(a glaze), or whatever else you can think of. As long as you are
careful with your mediums and solvents and drying times, you're
OK. It's really fun, and challenging too.
Thank you for visiting today.

7/02/2008

Pre-Raphaelite Sophie lll


Oil on Board, 5" x 7 1/2" , $125.00 SOLD

I was excited to be able to finish this painting
today. It certainly helped that it is not very
large. I'm finding it harder and harder to find
large enough chunks of time in which I can really
concentrate.

I know you've seen this kimono before. But I
really like it. I tried to turn it away from a real
red this time, although it does not come through
in the photo. It's more like a coral. What I like
about the picture are the pearly tones in her skin.

I once did a painting of her (this is my daughter)
where I made her face pink and green like a nautilus shell.
I think I'll post it, just so you can see it. I was very happy
with it. Someone bought it a long time ago, so I don't have
it anymore. But I do have a picture of it:

6/30/2008

Sharon Posing Seated on a Stool


Sanguine Conte Pencil on Blue Canson Laid
Paper, 8" x 11", $80.00 Bid Here
This drawing was done as a demonstration in a
figure class. It was meant to show the use of
sanguine (red) conte chalk or pencil for linear and
tonal work, and then the addition of white as
highlighting of highly illuminated areas. It is a classical
drawing technique. The demonstration part of it
explains the unfinished hands and feet, which I actually
like. It leaves something to the imagination.
Completely finished classically-rendered figures
are not something that appeal to me tremendously, but I
do love to draw!
Thanks for visiting today.

6/28/2008

Roman Statue, "Anzio Lady", Circa 300 B.C.



Silverpoint on Pink Clay-coated Paper with White
Gouache Highlighting, 7 1/2" x 10"
I taught a small workshop at my home today called
"Exploration in Art". We will be doing four different
media altogether. Today we did silverpoint and
water-media monotypes. I did this while my students
were doing theirs. I was so happy with it, that I decided
to post it to my blog. I've always loved this statue.
She is standing up, and holding a large book. But, it
is her beautiful face and peoccupied eyes that have
always fascinated me.

I usually prepare my own silverpoint paper using
hotpress watercolor paper and a mixture of gouache
and Liquitex acrylic (colored with acrylic paint), but
this paper was given to me by a person in a church I
use to go to. She gave me a whole bunch of it. It's
a beautiful pink, and really smooth. The silverpoint
just glides over the surface, so it is really fun to draw
on.

Thanks for visiting today, and have a nice weekend.

6/27/2008

Essence Drawing of Sharon Posing


Essence on Laid Paper, 7" x 9", $100.00 SOLD
This is another painted drawing done in the
essence technique that I've talked about in
previous posts. I wasn't crazy about the color in
this one, but I do love the pose, light, and linear
work. The paint goes on the laid paper (Ingres
paper in this case) just beautifully once the oil has
been leached out of it, and of course it dries with
no ugly oil stains around it. I love this technique!
It is great for quick sketching of the model. I will
be offering a workshop in this at The Art League
School in Alexandria, VA next School year, and
will also ge using the technique this quarter in
my figure class.

6/25/2008

Andy No. 2, 7/7


Drypoint Etching, 2" x 3 $55.00 Bid Here
This is an image that I have gone back to several
times - which seems to be a habit that I have. If
I didn't know that it was/is common among other
artists, I'd worry about it. But some images just
sort of grab you and don't let go. This guy was
a model for my classes for a while. He was unusal,
and that is all I'll say about him. But his face in this
image has something transcendent about it, and I
was happy with the way that I caught that. I also
like the burr in his hair.
For those of you who are not that familiar with drypoint,
it is a demanding medium, that differs from etching, in that
you draw directly on the bare plate with a diamond or
carbide steel point. There is never any acid involved. Any
tone, line variation, texture, etc., all that has to be produced
with the point of your instrument. It takes a lot of practice. I have
taught many people to do it, and have found that some people are
naturally skilled in it, yet for others, it is a struggle they eventually
master if they keep at it.
People who do a lot of graphite drawing find drypoint etching
rather natural, so if you think you might be interested in doing
this, that's what you should be doing to prepare for it. Or course
you need an etching press , and printmaking paper, and ink to print
the plate. Editions from drypoint plates are not large, because the
burr (the piece of metal that is kicked up along side of the line that
you draw through the metal surface - that would be cut off by an engraver,
for instance) wears down a bit with the pressure of every printing.
Twenty prints is a large edition for drypoints!

6/24/2008

Jaclin Posing in a Kimono


Oil on Board, 5" x 7 1/2" , $100.00 SOLD

This is another composition that I have played
around with several times. I took a series of
photos of this model in various positions quite
a while ago. I was so captivated with her long
torso and legs, and her white skin, which really
was pale like this. She owned the kimono, and
the colors weren't anything like this, but I have
fun making up the colors each time I paint her.
Creating color harmonies is one of the things
I enjoy most about painting.

When my husband and I lived in Boston in the
80's and part of the 90's, we had an architecture
and interior design business. I am not an architect -
he is - although he also went to art school... but I really
enjoyed the interior design part of it; particularly
when we had interesting, imaginative clients who
weren't afraid to experiment with color and pattern.
My own taste does not lean toward the modern in
interior design, so it was fairly easy to get along with
our clients, most of whom had a "Beacon Hill" mentality.
We got one job just because, when the woman said,
"I'm thinking of a specific color for my library", I piped
up with "Pompeiian Red?". That just happened to be it,
and we began a job that lasted two years, and included
our designing everything in her residence down to the
bookshelves, the rugs, the tiles in her bathroom, and
a mural in her dining room. That was something.
A lot of work. But, I learned a lot as well.

Thanks for visiting today.

6/22/2008

Chincoteague Afternoon


7 1/2" x 5", Oil on Board, $100.00 BID HERE
I went to Chicoteage with my family many years ago, and I was
most fascinated by the marshy land that spread everywhere, and
the little inlets of water that would reflect the colors of the sky.
It was also fun to see the horses.
The last time we were there some of those horses were actually
wandering around on the beach trying to steal peoples' lunches
and treats, and my daughter, quite a bit younger at that point,
kept talking about "ponies gone bad". It was so funny, and we
had a wonderful day. I think this is kind of a Technicolor
Chincoteague, but, whatever. I had fun using my memory,
which was probably looking " through rose-colored glasses".

6/20/2008

Silverpoint Head with Highlighting


6" x 8", Silverpoint on prepared, grounded
hotpress watercolor paper,
This is a silverpoint drawing, it was drawn
on a piece of paper that I prepared with a
ground made of a small amount of Liquitex
gesso mixed with a small amount of white
Gouache paint and then colored with cyan
and green watercolor paint. The ground is
applied with a wide, soft watercolor brush
and allowed to dry. It can be sanded if
it is too rough. You can also use straight
gesso, casein, or gouache as grounds. The
problem with gouache is that it remains
reactive to water.
It is easy to do a silverpoint drawing. All
you need is an architect's technical lead holder,
a piece of 18 guage silver wire, some masking
tape, and some very fine sand paper. You cut
a piece of silver wire about one inch long, and
wrap some tape around it so it won't wiggle
around in the lead holder. Then you place it
in the lead holder and retract the metal
"petals" that hold the lead in, and make sure
the silver doesn't wiggle.
Then, you sand the point until it is round.
This is very important, so that you won't just
rip lines in the ground. The abrasive ground
causes a little bit of silver to come off of the
wire each time you make a stroke, and
voila, you have a silverpoint drawing.
The highlighting was done with a very fine
#00 round liner-type watercolor brush and
some white gouache (often referred to as
"body color" in descriptions of old drawings).
This is really fun. You ought to try it. The silver
will oxidize over time, turning browner. If you
paint some egg yolk over it lightly, this will
accelerate the oxidation.
Thanks for visiting today.

6/18/2008

Italian Villa Sunrise


4" x 5 1/2" , Oil over Acrylic on Board,
$100.00 SOLD
This is another version of a painting that I did
many years ago, based on a black and white
photograph I found in Italy. It is partly real,
and mostly made up.
A glaze of ultramarine blue over a thin black
acrylic sketch was the inspiration for the
"sunrise". From there it was fairly easy to imagine
what colors would be there if the sun were shining
from below...the red roof just catching the light, and
the statue catching full sun. I wish I were there now...
When I lived there I could go to the student cafeteria,
the Mensa, and get lunch or dinner for 50 cents. Those
days are long gone. I haven't been back since 1973.
But I've not lost the inspiration to still make pictures
of the place. There is no other place like it.