Saturday, June 30, 2012


50/50 #11
50/50 (11) COLLAGE BASE
The base for this drawing was created on deli paper with acrylics.  There is some gold metallic paint incorporated into the design.  It is always difficult to photograph metallic because of it's highly reflective surface.  

When I drew the face with ink, I didn't think I had enough contrast for the line to really show.  I decided to highlight with Gold (fine) fluid acrylic.  All of the deli papers needed the extra painting of the highlights. 

This was done a few days ago.  Today I created 12 collaged backgrounds. It was so much fun.  I always save the smallest scraps of painted collage paper.  Working this size, these little pieces add an interesting touch.  I loved making these little jewel of an abstract composition.  It helped knowing I was going to add an ink drawing on top.  Making a bunch at a time and having them each a different idea let me try out ideas as they came to me.  I have never worked in this manner before and it was exciting.  I have decided to complete all the backgrounds before I do any more ink drawings.  

The meeting last night was very interesting.  About half of the exhibitors were there and each brought examples of their 50/50 project.  We went around the room and each person talked about their ideas and how they were approaching them.   I am always so impressed by some of the things creative people  think about to express in paint and other art materials.  One is doing "Queen for a Day" (If you are not old enough to remember this, Google) Another is working with the spines of old books plus what was tucked inside the books.  This is going to be a fantastic show!

Friday, June 29, 2012


50/50 #10
Well, I couldn't resist!  This was done on a deli paper covered with acrylic pattern that had gold and red
as the dominant hue.  I thought the line alone would get lost, so I added a light gold and white highlights with a little diluted ink for the shadows.   I have given more depth to subsequent images (which I will post in the coming days).  I was concerned that it wouldn't look right with the images done with just ink.  Fortunately, when intermingled with the others, they have a cohesive quality.  These do not have to be hung in order of completion.  If will be an interesting shuffling act when I am ready to put the entire 49 panels together. 

Tonight is a meeting of the artists that are participating in the 50/50 show.  I am looking forward to seeing what others are doing.  So far I have only seen my friend, Leslie Lambert's work.  Love what she is doing.  Can't wait to see some of the others.  I think it will be a violation to photograph tonight, so I will have to wait until the show opens to share images with all of you. 

 In the meantime, perhaps you might want to consider doing a series of small works, yourself.  It is presents some interesting problems to be solved.  Solving problems creates growth.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


50/50 8

I guess I forgot to photograph the background by itself.  The book will have the finished painting on the left and the description of the process on the right, so I guess it really doesn't matter.  I like the variety of the weight of the line with this one.  

Monday, June 25, 2012


50/50 7

50/50 (7)

I can see it will be a challenge to come up with blog entry titles 50 different ways!    Here is the next one in the series.  I like how this turned out.  Since I am drawing directly with ink, there is no turning back, correcting mistakes or "do-overs".  They gave me two extra boards, so if I do have 2 do-over options.  I guess I could gesso over a disaster if it came to that.  So far I like some better than others but all are usable.    

Sunday, June 24, 2012


50/50 #6

50/50 (6)
Well, it turns out I miscounted and this is actually #6, the previous being number 5.  I know my math skills are under par but I was sure (up to this point) that I could count to 10 without any trouble.  Apparently, I was mistaken.  Actually, what happened is that the one I did fifth doesn't fit in stylistically with these, so I am renumbering them and confusing the hell out of myself.  It will all work out.  When they are all done, I just have to put my name and a date on the back.

I worked on three today and they are much more painterly with chiaroscuro.  I will decide later if I want to give that effect to all of them.  I just can't keep things simple.  I guess I find it boring to keep doing the same thing over and over exactly in the same way.  

Here's a great quote from a wonderful little book I just purchased called "Steal Like an Artist...10 things nobody told you about being creative" by Austin Kleon

"Don't worry about unity from piece to piece - what unifies your work is the fact that you made it"

Saturday, June 23, 2012

NUMBER 6! (Actually #5)

50/50 #5

I did four drawings today but decided to post them individually, one a day.  This one has some gesso scraped onto the paper.  Painted the paper with two colors.  When dry, I collaged two different tissue papers is stamped using archival brown stamp pad ink.  The other is a tissue that had been laid on top of wet paint in my watercolor palette, then carefully lifted up and draped over the back of a chair to dry.  This makes wonderful collage paper and uses up paint that would be wiped up or thrown out.  

India Ink applied with a coffee stirrer completes the piece.  I will seal all the pieces with acrylic varnish when I have finished them.  I can still do more to each piece if I feel it needs something.  

You can see the difficulty in photographing the work.  The lower image most accurately reflects the actual color of this small painting.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


50/50  1
50/50  2

50/50  3

50/50  4

Here are the first four finished panels.  My idea is to use collage, acrylic and ink on paper with each one to be slightly different in technique than the others.  I am writing down each step on a large post it note which I am sticking to the back so I can reproduce the idea again sometime in the future.  I have 10 more panels with the first layer on, ready to go tomorrow.  I am painting the edge of each panel a different color.  When they are hung with an inch between them, the colored edge should add some interest.

Monday, June 18, 2012


Here is the slide show I promised for the talented people who were in the Pleasanton workshop.  Life kept getting in the way but I finally got the slides going.  I apologize for the names not appearing with the paintings.  I haven't figured out this new website yet.  As  you can see, some of the paintings were completed and some are in different stages of development.  Everyone is able to work at their own pace, which is an important element in the creative process.

I am working on my 50/05 paintings and will begin to post them tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012



This is the first chance I have had to post the final demo for the Pleasanton workshop.   Learning how to paint hair and whiskers so it appears integrated rather than pasted on can be a challenge.  This was a quick demo and my old friend Morrie was the perfect subject.  This was from my latest photos of him.  He seems to be in a happier mood!

I will be putting together a slide show of all the great paintings from the workshop.  Hope to have that up tomorrow.

Thursday, June 7, 2012



This is the demo I did today for the Workshop I am giving for the Pleasanton Art  League.  We just have 3 days but everyone is working hard and I am enjoying working with this great group of artists.  The Firehouse Art Center is a wonderful place to teach.  It is a renovated firehouse and their gallery spaces are beautiful. The National Watercolor Society traveling show was there last year and the California Watercolor Association is going to have the next national exhibit there.  It will be spectacular!  The workshop room is bright, large and a joy to work in. 

 Downtown Pleasanton is one of those charming older "bygone era" places that are so much fun to stroll around, shop and dine.  If you haven't checked it out before and are in the area, be sure and plan to stop for a few hours, at least.  

Friday, June 1, 2012


My daughter in law's sister had a beautiful baby boy.  My gift to the couple was a portrait of the baby.  I guess they couldn't wait until Nathan was able to sit up, as they sent me their favorite photo with him reclining.  It makes for an awkward pose but I soldiered on.  I am dering the painting this weekend to Eve-Marie and she can hand deliver it to her sister.  It seems safe arrival is assured this way.  

I also received news yesterday that I was among the 72 artists out of 120 selected to participate in the 50/50 exhibit at the Sanchez Art Center in Pacifica.  This is where I will produce 50 6" square paintings in 50 days.  I look forward to seeing the final exhibit.  I love the look of lots of small related paintings shown together.

I am off to Cambria for the weekend.  Robert Burridge is having a gallery opening tonight in San Luis Obsibo.  Cambria is just a few miles away, so I am excited to be able to attend.  It should be lots of fun if Bob had anything to do with the planning! 

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