I learned today that my painting of the South Bay (view from the Dumbarton Bridge) was accepted into BAYcentric, the August exhibition at the Pacific Art League in Palo Alto, CA. The exhibition will be up from August 1 through August 28 with an opening reception on Friday, August 1 from 5:30 to 8:00 p.m.
Filtering by Category: Landscapes
The Sanchez Art Center in Pacifica hosts an annual 50 | 50 show. Participating artists must complete 50 pieces in 50 days. The pieces must be done on the provided 6 x 6" panels. I'm about a week and a half in to this project. I'm enjoying the challenge. Some pieces are clearly more successful than others, but because of the time sensitivity, I can't fixate on what is not perfect. This is a good exercise for me.
Below are the pieces I have completed to date. Each drawing will be sold for $95 through the Sanchez Art Center.
I recently begun two new landscapes. One is from a photo taken from Iowa in December of a farm house on the horizon. The other is of the Suisun marsh area here in the Bay Area. I am enjoying the challenge of trying to capture the smoke in the distance.
Just a quick update on Rockridge Nightscape. I diminished the contrast of the tree's shadow in the foreground. Pushed back the lights on the horizon line and increased the contrast; alluded to windows in brownstones (town houses?).
I've become particularly interested in documenting my work, in tracking the development of a painting over time. In an effort to study and share the many lives a painting lives, I will post the history of a painting at the point when I've decided it is complete.
Below is the source photo, the study, the underpainting, and the finished painting of Claremont and Forest.
I've been working on Rockridge Nightscape AKA Liquor Video for 4 weeks. Because I only work on it during class - twice a week for three hours - each time I paint I look at it with fresh eyes. I made several major changes (at least major to me) this past class. Although the painting may look worse for it for now, the changes are for the best. The tree that was dividing the canvas virtually in half is gone and I've brought back the green leaves in the foreground. Next up: bringing back the depth in the sky and foreground.
And you may recognize this painting. It's a larger version of a study I did several months ago. I'm really happy with how the foreground is shaping up.
This painting is from a photo I took with my phone this past Friday night. It is the intersection of MacArthur and Park Boulevard by the high school.
And the latest iteration of "Liquor Video". I've been trying to paint only with 1" or larger brushes to keep the stroke loose and painterly and force myself not to fall into my old habit of overworking details.
I've been continuing to work on my Oakland Nightscapes series. It's been somehwat of a challenging venture, I'm not particularly good at working from photographs not to mention low-quality photographs taken at night.
One of the particularly challenging aspects is the inability to fully understand the physical structures. Edges and relationships between shapes are indistinct. However, and I think I touched on this in an earlier post, this may be a good thing. The nature of these images is forcing me to try a new style, too keep my brush strokes loose.
Additionally, because it is not my traditional way of working I'm allowing myself to work using different techniques. Specificially, introducing charcoal and sandpaper into the mix.
Now that summer is over and a certain normalcy has returned to my life, I've been able to get back into the studio and start the full-scale Oakland nightscapes in earnest. These paintings are based on photos that I took in the spring that I turned into studies (you can see both the photos and the studies in an earlier post here http://www.larahoke.com/larasblog/2010/6/5/reference-photos-to-formal-studies.html).
The goals is to create and ethereal space - something that feels not quite safe but is at the same time very familiar. To produce that effect I am developing the paintings slowly over time by applying lightly tinted semi-transparent layers of glaze. I use the classic 1/3, 1/3, 1/3 recipe to make my glazing medium - linseed oil, damar varnish, and turp. I am also working to loosen the brush stroke and am introducing line in the form of charcoal and graphite.
Below are three photographs juxtaposed with painting studies. My primary interest in comparing the two images was correcting spatial and color discrepancies. However, viewing them as a set, what I find most fascinating and valuable is the difference between perception and reality.
I spent another hour working on this painting after taking a fresh look at this morning and being dissatisfied by the color and contrast.
This painting is based a photo of our neighborhood corner store from the opposite direction of the previous painting (Laundromat Night Hawks).
Instead of diving head first into a large canvas, I decided to work on a preliminary painting to get the feel of the composition and color. This painting is small, probably around 12 x 18 and done in about two hours. I plan to work just a bit more into it and then will consider making a go of it on a bigger canvas.
What I am pleased about is how when I work quickly on a small format my paintings have a softer, dream-like quality. There is also an energy there that too often I lose when working on my larger paintings.
To the left is the original photograph that I took of our laundromat and cornerstore. To the right are overlays of my first efforts at the painting overlayed with at different opacities on the original photo.
Below are images of my second efforts at the painting. I moved and minimized the corner shop and adjusted the size of the laundromat.
Ben and I just returned from a week on the Mexican Riviera. A short flight, but a world away.
We had a series of adventures up and down the coast, including surfing lessons in the tiny beach town of Sayulita, cracking fresh lobster using a tin plate and a plastic table in Yelapa - a beach accessible only by boat - and placing bets on whether some pairs were father/daughter duos or romantically entwined...
Here is a sampler of photos from our time in Mexico. I've included more in the Photography section of this site. Enjoy!
Between 1935 and 1943 the WPA's Federal Art Project printed over two million posters in 35,000 different designs to stir the public's imagination for education, theater, health, safety, and travel. I love these posters. They are great examples of the very gray space between graphic design and fine art, if such a space exists.
Thanks to Ranger Doug Enterprises, these posters are available for purchase with a percentage of each sale going to returning these posters to the public domain. He has also added several contemporary poster designs to this collection at the request of the parks: Devils Tower, Bryce Canyon, Denali, Olympic, Mesa Verde and Hawaii.
Ben and I are working with Kim Vanderheiden of Painted Tongue Studios to translate the style and imagery of these posters for our Yosemite wedding invitations.