Friday, December 23, 2016

Rockfish Valley

Rockfish Valley
8" x 10" oil on HD Canvas
$80 plus shipping

This is a semi-imaginary scene from Nelson County, VA on the Bold Rock Cider Property in Nellysford, VA. I used a reference photo, but I changed up the color scheme big time and added some embellishments such as the river, snaking off into the distance. Here's the reference photo:

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Drift Rose Study II

Drift Rose Study II
5" x 7" oil on board
Sold

The second of my election day drift rose studies. I painted these under a combination of natural, north light and three overhead 60 watt GE bulbs, trying to keep the shapes as simple as possible.

Drift Rose Study

Drift Rose Study
5" x 7" oil on board
$50 plus shipping

After voting on election day, I painted flowers, secure in the notion that our country was headed in the right direction...I'm happy with the results of my paintings; the election, not so much.

Lily Study

Lily Study
5" x 7" oil on board
$50 plus shipping

Anything in a glass jar might be my new favorite subject to paint. The light shines in my "studio" window from the north and creates all sorts of nice, cool, pastely colors in the glass.  As usual, I've had a hell of a time getting a good photo - my iPhone actually gives the truest representation of the color, but despite editing, it looks better in person.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Fruit Basket with Kosher Salt and Wine

Fruit Basket with Kosher Salt and Wine
16" x 20" oil on board
$150 plus shipping

I painted this sometime over the summer and just never posted it. I had woken up around 3am and couldn't go back to sleep, so I just got up.  Then I got the urge to paint. I really like the looseness and the abstract shapes in the background that are actually kitchen appliances and cabinets. I think what made me want to paint was that that the arrangement was just there, prearranged, and I like it when I don't have to artificially pose objects to create a composition.

Historic Sycamores - Harpers Ferry, WV

Historic Sycamores
9" x 12" oil on board
$90 plus shipping

I read that sycamore trees often live up to 250 years, with some living as long as 400-500 years! So I would imagine that the massive sycamores standing in Harpers Ferry National Historical Park stood witness to the battle of Harpers Ferry, which took place in 1852. That blows my mind. It was fun painting them.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Camellia Flowers

Camellia Flowers
8" x 10" oil on board
Sold

After voting, I spent the rest of election day painting flowers to increase my inventory for the Sodexo craft show coming up on December 2nd. As usual, this painting is much prettier in person.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Monocacy Island

Monocacy Island
8" x 10" oil on board
$70

The photo and the name of this painting - not so great. However, I think this is one of my best plein air paintings.  I got it down quickly, and it's accurate. I like the little reflection of sky in the lower left.  I caught no fish on this day because the river was up, but I had a great time painting.
Still Life with Bananas, Fruit Basket and Wine.
9" x 12" oil on board
$85 plus shipping

As usual, I've been experimenting with paint palettes and approaches. I painted over a pre-existing painting for this one, so there are some nice textures, and I didn't draw it out beforehand. I just picked up my brush and started painting. That could be why it's a little more centered than I'd like it to be. However, it's interesting, and I like the colors.

Audubon Park Stoop

Audubon Park Stoop
16" x 12" oil on board
$100 plus shipping

I took the reference photo for this painting several years ago during a visit to New Orleans. I wish I could grow oranges on my stoop...

Abstracted Cat

Abstracted Cat
8" x 10" oil on board
Sold

Yep.

Ellie and Mo

Ellie and Mo
8" x 10" oil on board
Commissioned

I hate to say it, but I dislike painting people's pets. It's tedious and stressful because it involves hours of staring at the computer screen, trying not to screw up a member of someone's family. That said, Ellie and Mo turned alright, and if you want to pay me, I'll paint your animal even though I don't really want to.

Winter's Coming

Winter's Coming
8" x 10" Oil on Board
$70

The next few posts are going to be a bit of a blog dump.  Obviously, I haven't posted in months, mostly due to lack of time. However, I have been painting. I have a show coming up in December, so I'm getting everything up to date.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Ginger-ale Studies


Ginger-ale Studies
5" x 7" oil on gesso board
$50 each plus shipping

My camera over saturates colors and enhances shadows, but I'm usually able to adjust once I get them uploaded so that they're close to reality.  However, My wife installed a bunch of updates to the Mac today, including a new version of i-photo, which I haven't quite gotten the hang of. As a result,  these photos are a little less true than usual.

The ginger-ale was sitting on a little table at my back door, and it was early morning,
so I had to paint quickly (30 minutes each) to keep up with the changing light. Hence, the looseness of these paintings. I guess light always changes at the same rate, but the variance in warmth and intensity per half hour stretch seems to be greater in the morning than in the hours before and after mid-day.


Saturday, February 27, 2016

My Daily Paintworks Bio

I'm a full time teacher and new dad, with a lot of serious hobbies. Balancing work and spending time with my beautiful daughter, while maintaining a level of fitness and making time for interests such as hiking, fishing, kayaking, guitar, and traveling feels like I'm spinning plates, giving a spin here and there to keep my loves alive. Out of all of my interests, however, oil painting has emerged as a passion. And while I have not studied painting in a formal setting, I study constantly on my own. 

Friends and family ask why I don't try to sell my paintings for more money or market myself more than I do. My response is that I feel like I'm working toward something; I don't know exactly what it is, only that I'll know when I get there. At this point, I'm happy to cover my expenses with a few sales here and there, which I do. Like every artist, however, I need to know that I'm making progress and that people enjoy my work. I've followed Daily Paintworks for several years and I see a community of great artists, who provide each other with feedback, both positive and negative, while making a few sales here and there. That's all I can hope for.

There is a link to my Daily Paintworks Gallery on the main page. 

Apples and Bananas

Apples and Bananas
11" x 14" oil on canvas
$125 plus shipping

From time to time, I paint something that feels like a breakthrough, and this is one of those times.

I've written over and over about my attempts to focus on values and the relationship of shapes while ignoring details, but I struggle mightily to employ this practice in my painting. The temptation to paint too fine too soon is usually just too strong. I find myself breaking out the tiny brushes well before I should, and this results in muddiness or distorted values because I haven't even blocked in the masses. I feel like there's pressure to make things perfect, but there's not. I mean, who the hell even looks at this blog? So I said screw it, picked up the biggest brush I could find, and squinted. And I had a much more enjoyable painting experience.

I'm not calling this a masterpiece, but I like the clean colors and shapes, some of which just happened because I felt like they were more appealing than what was actually there. There aren't a lot of fine details in this painting, but I don't think there needs to be.

I painted this over an older painting, and you can still see some of the underlying textures - you can even see the relief of the old signature in the top right corner...Also, I didn't repaint the sides of the canvas, so if you're tempted to buy, just beware. You'd probably want to frame it anyway, so the exposed sides wouldn't matter. They're kind of an off-white, similar to the off-white in the top right, so it's really not a problem.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Kitchen Window - Late January

Kitchen Window - Late January
8" x 10" oil on canvas panel
$70 plus shipping

There's a sort of guilty, lonesome feeling I get when I'm home alone in the afternoon during the work week. Maybe it stems back to when I used to play hooky as a kid and my mom would know I wasn't really sick. Everyone's away at work or school, but you're home alone, avoiding. Actually, this was painted during a snow day, so I shouldn't have felt guilty or lonesome.

I'm happy with this painting, and I feel like it captures the lonesome feeling of weak sun shining through a kitchen window at the end of January. I tried to focus on shapes again instead of tiny details. And while I painted this inside in my kitchen, with the quickly changing light, it was no different from painting outdoors.

Afternoon in January

Afternoon in January
8" x 10" oil on canvas panel
$70 plus shipping

I know this painting is weird and abstract and most likely no one will buy it, but it was satisfying to paint. First, I painted over another painting that I didn't really like, which is always satisfying. I like the textures that it creates, and it's always interesting to let spots of the old painting poke through. Secondly, I was home alone during a snow day with no distractions. Thirdly, I didn't let myself get caught up in details. My goal for the painting was to paint shapes, not chairs and shadows. This approach was so much more enjoyable than trying to capture every tiny detail, and I plan to paint like this more often.

Blue Teapot with Lemon II

Blue Teapot with Lemon II
8" x 10" oil on board
Sold

Sometimes I wonder what difference it would make if I had an actual studio with adequate space and lighting and painting supplies at the ready. My setup for this painting involved balancing the blue teapot and lemon on a wooden box, perched on top of a crab pot, yes a crab pot, sitting on top of our guest bed.  This was the only way I could get the lighting and angle that I wanted for the painting. The surface that the box is sitting on in the painting did not actually exist...I did my best to imagine what it would look like if the box was sitting on a table by the window.

I like the colors and the values, but it's a little too symmetrical or something. Any thoughts?

Friday, January 29, 2016

Passing Storm

Passing Storm
8" x 10" oil on board
Commissioned - sold

This is the second version of this painting that I've done; the first is hanging in my bathroom.  My brother requested the painting, something with water and boats, for a coworker who's moving to the northern neck of Virginia.  I had already emailed a photo of the painting to my brother when I realized that I'd made a mistake. The horizon on the right was much lower than the horizon on the left...not physically possible.  So I scraped it off, got rid of a dock and boathouse and added a new horizon. The painting's called "Passing Storm," and I feel like the revised version does a better job of creating that effect.  Here's the original:




















Here's the first one that's hanging in my bathroom:


Thursday, January 28, 2016

Casey

Casey
8" x 10" oil on board
Not for Sale

For Dave and Sherry Herr: you've been an inspiration in my life and in my career, and I think of you as family. I hope this painting brings you some joy.


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Jams and Jellies

Jams and Jellies
8" x 10" oil on board
Sold

My wife stole these jams and jellies from her mom in a dirty santa gift exchange at my aunt Alice's house. The jars were so pretty, sitting on our kitchen table, that I had to paint them. I don't have an actual studio, so I just set up wherever I find space. I painted these under the track lighting in my kitchen, and when I set the painting up to take the photograph, it looked completely different than it did under the track lighting; much warmer than it appeared during the painting process.  I need a painting studio with good lighting...