Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Icons of the West Exhibition

Snow Flurries, Ochoco Ranch
20 x 16, oil

I am honored to announce that Snow Flurries has been selected into the prestigious National Icons of the West Exhibition, to be held at Dana Gallery, 246 N Higgins, Missoula, MT

The jury for this show consisted of five judges including art patrons, professional artists, university faculty and museum personnel.  The judges selected over 100 pieces of work from nationally and regionally acclaimed artists. 
Public opening will be Friday, June 1.  The exhibition runs from June 1 through August 31, 2012
For more information please contact Dana Gallery at 406-721-3154, or info@danagallery.com

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Ancestor Series #5 up for bid

Ancestor Series #5

Aren't we all just a little fascinated by the people who came before us?  Native Cultures call them the Ancestors.  We discover tiny hints about their lives in the ancient fresco paintings at archeological sites. 

The Ancestor Series grew out of a fascination in discovering the faces in the stone, images that began to emerge from the textures created on the painting surface.  I start with smooth gessoed 6 inch by 6 inch panels on a 1.5 inch cradle.  I apply tape and additional levels of gesso, then began to mark with a pencil.  As the gesso dries, I search for the suggestion of a face.  When I find it, I start with charcoal sticks followed by oil paint rubbed into the surface. 

At times this approach feels close to what I imagine ancient cave painters did, using the textures of the rock to help suggest their forms.  Don't you wonder what stories this face might have to tell?

 Click here to bid

Friday, May 4, 2012

Snow at Smith Rocks from The Mountain Series

Snow at Smith Rocks, from The Mountain Series
is now up for bid on eBay

There is a famous rock climbing area nearby that draws people from around the world.  The rocks rise up abruptly from a deep canyon and are rich ochers and reds in the early spring sunlight, as the sun begins to move higher in the sky.  Unfortunately we still deal with the occasional late spring snow that melts away soon enough but leaves a chill in the clear air. 

This painting is new from my Mountain Series.  Most of the paintings to date have been large, but I began a new series in smaller "Daily Painting" size formats.

Original oil landscape painting, 5 inches high by 7 inches wide, on gessoed panel, not framed.  Signed with initials lower right.  Signed in full on reverse.  2012.

I hope you enjoy them.  More to come.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Spring Snow

Paintings from the Oregon Outback


The warm spring sun has melted the snow from the rocks on this high ridge near my house, but has barely touched the snow field.  

5" by 7", oil on gessoed panel, available on auction at eBay here.   SOLD

I have been working on the Mountain Series in large sizes, and thought it would be fun to do a few in the small Daily Painting size for collectors who are interested in smaller work.  I hope you enjoy them as I post a few more for auction over coming weeks. 


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

New Series, New Paintings

 I have been working with a new series of large paintings that are somewhat of a departure for me.

Afternoon Light, Mountain Series

 I have been enjoying the process of painting, experimenting with this subject matter. Afternoon Light is 20 x 30, a unique size that I found at a local canvas manufacturing company, not something they  normally have on hand.  I'm thinking that I might have to do some research to find a better source or else go back to stretching my own canvases. 

Eye of the Sleeping Man, Mountain Series

This painting reminds me of a lot of the geological features here, some caldera effects that you don't really notice until winter when the snow highlights the curve and the rocks. This one is 22 by 28. I remember going up to see Mt. St. Helens after the eruption and maybe there was some residual visual memory going on when I was working on this painting.  You can see more paintings on my website here.  

I think I'd forgotten how free it is to paint on a large surface.  I recently bought a new easel which makes it so much easier to handle large canvases, and I have a stack of really good sizes, just working my way up into the larger format to see what problems might arise.  You can't just blow up a small study into something that is 30 x 40 and expect it to work out visually. 

The gallery that was going to host my show in July-August unexpectedly closed at the beginning of April.  I know it was a hard decision for them, and after the shock I realized that I didn't have to keep working on the paintings that were going there. They were all small so maybe this new series is therapeutic and perhaps opening a new path of discovery. 

In the last two years I have recognized that I'm working more into the series orientation, which is actually good, structurally, for me.  A single idea keeps me focused and so far I have more ideas than time to paint them.  With this series I want to explore the various colors and light combinations, and also a bit of the unusual perspective, more like a hawk-eye view of the mountaintops.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

New "Daily Painting" - Rose Series

David Austin Rose I
7" x 5", oil on panel

I have a lovely old David Austin rosebush in the back yard that has produced wonderful bouquets of flowers for years. Recent harsh winters have taken their toll and I have been painting the roses from last season before the bush completely gives up. These roses have a delicate yellow and pink color with a light old rose fragrance, and I have used them in several large still life paintings. I think they have more personality than the hot-house long stem roses from the flower shop.

If you are interested in adding this painting to a collection or giving it as a gift, please email me and I will send you an invoice through paypal. There will be a nominal shipping charge depending upon where you live. I appreciate your interest!

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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Snow Flurries, Ochoco Ranch

Snow Flurries, Ochoco Ranch, 20x16 oil

I wanted to describe the sensations of warm and cool - when snow flurries descend from lowering clouds against a landscape that is still reflecting sunlight. I painted the first layers and then scraped them almost completely back to achieve interesting textural effects. As the painting progressed so did the the background hills, increasing in both number and height, creating a far more dramatic scene than I had first intended. In fact the inspiration for the final dramatic slant came when I was studying the painting and realized that a cast shadow across the surface from a nearby chair was the perfect addition - go with what you are given - even if the information comes from a chair :)

Monday, January 30, 2012

That Summer When We Walked the Field

That Summer When We Walked the Field, 12" x 36", oil, © 2012

I was remembering how in the spring and summer we used to walk the fields. I wanted to paint this with all the warmth of a summer day, the sun off the water, and the feeling of contentment, that earthy sense of belonging to the land, of standing there leaning on the long wooden pole we used for digging rocks and pounding the ground to scare the rock chucks - who were always tunneling and causing difficulties for the flood irrigation.