Sharon in a Reclining Pose in Class

Oil on Gessoed Rag Board, 6" x 8 1/4" $150.00
I painted this sketch in homage to my favorite
model, Sharon, because she posed for my class
today. She never fails to inspire me, even though
she has been modeling for me, and for my classes,
for almost fifteen years. She just knows what to
do, modelling-wise, and her wistful and witty
Irish personality (her father was from the Old
Country) permeates the room when she is in
it. Her hair is red now, but for the sake of the
color harmonies of this piece, it isn't.
I enjoyed myself doing this, even though
I had to teach today and didn't have much
time left to do it. It isn't perfect, but I'm
pretty happy with it.


Oil Sketch of a Mexican Girl in Polka Dot Scarf

Oil on Gessoed Hotpress WC Paper,
4" x 4 3/4" $60.00 go to eBay

Even though I absolutely love doing those pastel
drawings of classical images, it felt really good
getting back to oil painting today. It was slow
going at first - I feel kind of like the way a cat
or dog will circle around and around before they
find the right place to sit down. But I got some
much-needed encouraging words from a far-away
guardian angel that made a tremendous difference
in my day. I am very lucky.

I loved this image of this girl. While she is rather
melancholy in appearance, she has the most beautiful
eyes, and I loved the colors in her scarf. The polka dots
weren't there. I made them up, because I thought it would
liven up the composition, and counteract the pensive
look on her face.

When I was showing my work in New York, I was bascially
required to make the most detailed paintings I could. Now,
I don't really have anything against this (although it did
completely destroy the cartiledge in my right hand after five
years of day in and day out painting), but you can't do those
kinds of paintings in a day. So I have had to switch the way I
paint, and it has been a difficult journey for me.

It's funny, I have no trouble doing a twenty-minute gestural
painting of a figure model in class, but when I know I have
to publish it on a blog I think I get hung up about it. I need to
relax!!!! I love to paint. What's the worry?!?

Anyway, this is my offering for today.
Thanks for visiting. I am going to be painting
for the entire month of June, just oils - I've made
that commitment to myself....well. I may do an
acrylic underpainting.... or an occasional
pastel drawing......


After a Roman Patrician Woman of the Flavian Period

Pastel & Vine Charcoal on 18 x 24" White Paper
I was just about to post this yesterday afternoon
when a horrific thunderstorm blew in and knocked
out our electricity until just about an hour ago
(3:00 PM). I've been on a roll with these pastel
drawings, but I'm going back to oil painting tomorrow
because I have some things I want to work on.
So, wish me luck.


Ariadne, after Greek, c. 300 BC

Pastel and Carbon Pencil on 18" x 24"archival White Paper,
image 11" square $85.00 Go Here
This is another "veils of color" drawing, done with mostly
Nupastels, vine charcoal, and a carbon pencil. I could do these
drawings/paintings forever.
It is interesting. Many people consider pastels drawings. But,
yesterday, at the end of a class I teach at the Art League School
in Alexandria, Virginia, called "Painterly Pastel", we had a critique
and everyone put their work up on the wall.
I asked the question, "if you were to just walk in here and look at
these for the first time, would you call these "drawings", or,
"paintings". Every one of them said "paintings". And, I think that
is true. It is because of the power of color, even when there
are a lot of lines involved, as in the drawing above. One is drawn
in by the color. Even in a simplistic color scheme such as this.
Thanks for visiting today.


After Greek Athlete, 2nd C. BC

Oil Pastel over fixed charcoal drawing
on Rag Paper, 2" x 3" SOLD
I cannot tell a lie. I did not do this piece
today. But we had a terrible thunder,
rain, wind, hail, tree-branch-falling
storm here last night, and the day was
too full of distractions to get anywhere
near my studio. I felt it was in keeping
with what I posted yesterday as well.
I love this piece, and have actually
had it for years, not being able to part
with it, but I've decided it's time to
let it go. (if any one wants it, that is...)

The technique for this is fun. You do a
dark, hard -charcoal drawing -- you could
also use Conte or black Prismacolor
I imagine. Then you have to spray the
heck out of it. Next, you take a less
expensive brand of oil pastel like Shiva
or Prang, and go over that with a solid coat
of white, which will be transluscent. You
will be able to see your drawing through the
layer of white.

Next, you work into the white layer with other
colored oil pastels, either the less expensive
ones, or maybe Holbeins, or Winsor -Newtons; but don't
use Senneliers, because, as I said in a previous post,
they are an exceptionally luxurious product, literally
like lipstick, and would probably end up covering up
your drawing. The idea here is to work with
transparency and transluscency - to keep your
drawing partially visible, in other words.