Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Finishing Touch: When a Painting Finds a Home

As promised in an earlier newsletter, I thought I'd share a couple pictures of paintings in their owners' homes. This is what truly finishes a work of art... when it finds a home, the picture is complete! Commissioned portraits, especially, are often designed with a specific wall or space in mind. It's very gratifying to see the finished painting in its frame, hanging in the space that it was meant for. If you own one of my paintings and would like to share a snapshot of it in the room where it's hanging, please send me a picture! I would absolutely love to see the art in its home and share it here on my blog! Please send pictures to: , and thanks in advance! :-) The first picture features a 30" x 24" painting called, "The Young Explore… Read more »


Saturday, September 24, 2011

New Painting: "A Venetian Spectator"

Today I finally finished one of my paintings from this summer's trip to Italy. I enjoyed working on this one from start to finish, and found myself continually imagining up stories about this old woman's life, and what she might have to say if I were to sit down and have a conversation with her. Her expression could read any number of ways, from sour and grumpy (i.e., "Those damned tourists!") to thoughtful and lonely or simply enjoying the fresh air. Either way, I purposefully juxtaposed the old woman with a very cheerful scene at her window: brightly blooming flower pots, topped off with a rainbow-colored pinwheel. Of course, flowers, green shutters and pinwheels are familiar sights in Venice and other Italian cities, but I felt that this image had something special ab… Read more »


Friday, September 16, 2011

A Studio Filled with Potential!

Taking a look around my studio today, I counted twelve works in progress, or paintings that I've started within the past two months or so, and have yet to finish. Three of them were started just this week, and two of  those were started yesterday! I'm not going to share pictures of every single unfinished painting; some have more potential than others. Some will be finished very soon because I'm excited about them; others may never see completion but will instead get sanded off and painted over. As a 20-something, my life is in a stage of constant change. During this decade, there are so many things that happen: we graduate college, get married, buy a house, have kids, change jobs once or more, and essentially leave all of our childhood familiarities for the new and different.… Read more »


Friday, September 9, 2011

Preparing a Linen Canvas: How To

I've been getting a lot of e-mails lately asking me how I prepare a linen canvas, and also why I prefer it over cotton canvas. So, from now on I hope to simply refer these requests to this blog post. Hopefully this helps! If you are gluing linen to panel, that is a different thing ( see my post here ). For our purposes today, I am referring to stretching, sizing, and priming a linen canvas on stretcher bars, not panel. My reasons for using linen: linen is very different from canvas, not only in its texture and weave, but also in the way it is prepared and how it feels to paint on. Linen is much smoother, especially if prepared properly with a size such as rabbit skin glue or PVA glue, and an oil-based gesso rather than acrylic. The oil primer really makes for a smooth working surface, w… Read more »


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Clayton J. Beck, III Workshop at the Woodlands Art League

My head is still spinning from the overload of information I received at last week's three-day portrait and figure workshop with Clayton J. Beck, III  at the Woodlands Art League. I felt extremely privileged to be there and grateful for the instruction, as it was a totally new way of thinking and painting for me. Clayton Beck is, as my friend Michael would say, a "Schmidling," meaning that he studied under Richard Schmid once upon a time during the "golden age" of Schmid's teaching at the Palette and Chisel in Chicago. Beck now teaches there, and through his classes and workshops, he carries on the methods used by the 19th-century American artist John Singer Sargent as well as several of Sargent's contemporaries such as Anders Zorn and Joaquin Sorolla. Rich… Read more »

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