My First Art Opening

The painting continues...time is moving quickly these days...

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Back to that abstract

I look at this painting every time I watch TV. I should be painting instead of watching the TV but I am generally too tired in the evening to do any artwork.
This is the third time that I have retouched this painting and it is still not right. Abstract work is very hard I think, but I do want to do more of it.
Hopefully there are some ideas for the cityscapes that will influence abstract stuff for me in the future.

Last Steel Bridge for a While

This painting is 15" by 32" and was a nice way to say adios to painting the Steel Bridge. It was nice to paint the structure in a larger setting, with less detail and more sky and river.
On other paintings, I was tempted to add detail (clouds, brush strokes) to the sky, but I kept this one simple.
The reflections and noise in the river came out well. The warm, rusty background that I used over the white canvas makes a nice golden glow, which was evident in the late afternoon scene. I even let a lot more of the base color show through to try to exaggerate the warmth.
Overall, I think that this one has a good mix of detail and abstraction that I prefer.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

I started this long format painting today. I am hoping to give it to my wife for Christmas.
Because of the awkward format, I need to remind myself to keep stepping back and checking the perspective. This is just the underpainting and has good bones, so I should be ok.
Stay tuned for more.

Monday, October 5, 2009

The Working River #1

Two paintings were picked up by some happy clients this past weekend. One of them asked me if I felt sad letting a painting go? I am only sad in the fact that the project is over, but I like the fact that somebody else is enjoying the painting. If I have a painting sitting around my house then I just scrutinize it, which is educational but a little annoying. This is true for work that I have up around my place.
The same day the two Steel Bridge paintings left, I started in again on what I have been calling "Down by the River". I added more detail on Saturday and finished up on Sunday. I say finished, but need to live with it for a while.
I like that my work is developing a certain look, but keep looking at the work of impressionist artists and do think there is much to learn.
The light is subtle in this painting. The scene was captured early in the morning and the sun is low and is casting very long shadows. As with many of my paintings, I think that I get very close to capturing the light. I have always been shy about contrast in my drawing and painting and need to keep pushing the light and dark balance.
The sky helped with the contrast and I like the colors, but am not convinced by the line between the light red and blue. In reality, whatever that is, there is a much more subtle gradient. The light red (ok, pink) is a fog/cloud bank that typically happens at dawn. I have seen this cloud line be much more abrupt, which is what I am trying to emphasize in this painting. There is a graphic quality to this line, but I will keep looking at it.
Over all, I am pretty happy with this one.

Friday, October 2, 2009

I donated this painting to the AIA (American Institute of Architects) Portland office. It was the least that I could do, since they agreed to waive my membership fee this year due to financial hardship. It can be expensive to be a professional architect. Supposedly they are having an on-line auction, although I can't locate the link.