Sunday, November 18, 2007

Some New Originals For Sale

I'm selling a couple brand new tiny paintings on my Etsy Shop. They're priced pretty low so as to avoid hurting your holiday budget.... heck, buy them as gifts and you won't have to feel bad at all! They're small, cute, and ready-made to hang. Both are painted in acrylics on 4x4 inch wooden plaques (with about a 3x3 inch image surface).

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

"Tiny" Recap and Weekend Paintings

The Tiny reception on Saturday night was great fun and actually busy despite the rain that settled in for the evening. I was so happy to see a good number of friends come to the reception. Aside from the weather, about the only major disappointment was the turnout of the Cal vs USC game.

We didn't get too many pictures from the show, but here's a couple:

My "No Umbrella" piece is sitting in the bottom left corner of the window display.... suiting that it was pouring that night.

The morning after, I met up with a friend I met from the Sketchcrawl event, Eduardo Pacheco. We painted at the top of Alvarado Park, on the western tip of Wildcat Canyon. He was smart and set up on a paved path. I hiked up a trail, very wet from the previous night's rain, and was about two inches taller from the mud on my shoes by the time I stopped. I did a very quick oil sketch before meeting back up with Eduardo and his girlfriend to shoot the breeze for a while.

Alex had a couple extra days off for Veterans Day weekend, so we drove up north along the coast that night and stayed until late Tuesday afternoon. The rain has brought green back into Tomales Bay, and combined with the foggy mornings, I almost felt as though I were in Ireland or Scotland. I'm sure it would have been even easier to imagine had I been to either place.

I finally managed to meet up for a Grizzly Peak session this morning. After three early morning starts in a row, I was half tempted to sleep in, but I made it up anyway.

I apologize for all the poor photo quality by the way. Most of these were wet and had to be photographed instead of scanned.... and I have a poor light set-up back home. I'll try to scan them in later on when they're dry.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Post Studio Sessions

Tomorrow is the big day for Tiny Show reception. I have to admit a tinge of anxiety has mixed itself in with my excitement. I've been pretty good about balancing my schedule between studio and outdoor work, but recently I've gone outside a little more to mellow out. This update is a sort of review of the results, for better or worse.

Berkeley Aquatic park - I want to blame the relentless mosquitoes for the poor drawing of the tree, but instead, I'll blame the tree for being a poor model... take that, tree!

This is actually a little older, two weeks or so. The percentage of accuracy here is also about zilch, but I was more interested in experimentation with composition. I wonder why I'm starting this update off with two bad sketches... ?

I recently joined an online community called Sketchcrawl, which gathers artists around the world together to sketch on location from spot to spot. They held their 16th worldwide crawl this past Sunday. I met up with the San Francisco group, and found myself a couple new friends to sketch with.

We sketched around the Ferry Building in SF. Not exactly my choice of subject matter, but it was such a beautiful day that it didn't matter.

Homeless sleeper, and Eduardo, one of the new friends I met that day.

I wanted to paint with the Early Birds on Wednesday, but as I approached the parking lot way up on Grizzly Peak, I realized I left my panels back home. By the time I got back home it was too late to go back up, so I painted this view of my neighbor's house and their awesomely tall trees. Not sure if they're cypress or acacias. Two crows perched themselves at the very top of the highest tree as I was painting that area, so they're in there too.

"Two Crows" 5x7 Oil on Clayboard

I'm moving back into oils after a month's break. I tried them out on the clayboards I've been plugging on my blog. One noticeable trait is the clay just sucks the oil out of the pigment, which dries up what you put down pretty quickly. This has its share of pros and cons, but so far I'm liking the effect.

Yesterday, I crossed the Richmond bridge for a day trip along the north bay. I started off in the Marin Headlands which sits just beside the Golden Gate Bridge. It's another former military installment like the one in Pt. Molate I painted not too long ago. I returned to a spot I've been wanting to paint, a building sitting alone in a field with cypresses and a large hill behind it, only to find a few new things had been added to the scene. Piles of dirt, haystacks, and a green tarped fence. Eck. I decided to paint it anyway, but I may have to resort to a studio painting to get exactly what I wanted initially.

"Headlands Morning" 5x7 Oil on Clayboard

As soon as I parked and brought my equipment out, a lone coyote began following me.... very closely. I shooed her off a couple times, but quickly learned that she's been pretty much desensitized to people, as I'm sure a good number of tourists have been feeding her. I couldn't be bothered to constantly scare her away, so she simply sat next to me while I painted. She eventually realized I was just as hungry as she was.

I have to admit, the experience kinda fulfilled a youthful dream of mine to relive something out of Dances With Wolves (my brothers and I even had a hamster named Two Socks). Coyotes are much smaller than wolves though (but noticeably larger than hamsters), and my dog didn't care to dance so much.

Sorely tempted to paint this one.

The sad bit here is the Animal Protection Agency is forced to kill wild animals when they become too desensitized. I hope this one learns to hang out in smarter places than the side of the road and the likes of me.

I drove up north afterwards to Novato to meet my climbing/painting buddy, Jimmy. He showed me some photos a couple weeks ago of an old air control tower that's been gutted and set for restoration. It's only a matter of time before it's no longer ugly and decrepit, so we knew we had to paint it fast! Unfortunately, we got started with only an hour of light left, so that one will have to wait for a second session before I show it here. I did squeeze in a quick gouache sketch just before we met up.

That's it for now. Expect a recap on tomorrow's show soon!

Friday, November 02, 2007

Venetian Birds - The Series At Last!

After fooling around most of this year with doodles of birds in Venetian(esque) masks, and even a couple illustrations, I finally present to you the full series!

Each painting is 6" x 6", acrylic on canvas. They'll be hanging at the upcoming Tiny Show at the Studio Gallery in San Francisco, with a reception on Saturday, November 10th at 4pm. It's my favorite show of the year, so please drop by if you're in the area. There are literally hundreds of pieces hanging at any given time for seven weeks!

Without further ado:

"What a Hoot"

"Without a Paddle"

"How do I Look?"

"Cat's Meow"


"Up Past Bedtime"

"You Look Silly, Papa"

"No Umbrella (and I Spent My Last Dime on this Mask)" ... my personal favorite. I kinda hope it doesn't sell!

Here are some progress shots of the birds, freshly hatched:

Drawings all lined up. And that's my wife's Justice League Nutella jar above.

Thick canvas stretchers so you can hang them without a frame.

Underpainting/Washes on "No Umbrella" I dripped rubbing alcohol in areas to create the splotch effect.

The Lab.... err, Studio. Hmm, there are two extra canvases there.

Hope you enjoy them as I much as I enjoyed painting them!