Filtering by Category: Work in Progress

Reference Photos to Formal Studies

Added on by Lara Hoke.

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.

Lara Hoke, Oakland, Walking Towards Painting StudyLara Hoke, Oakland, Walking Towards Painting Study



Lara Hoke, Oakland, Bodega, Painting StudyLara Hoke, Oakland, Bodega, Painting Study


Lara Hoke, Oakland, Walking Away, Painting StudyLara Hoke, Oakland, Walking Away, Painting Study

Oakland Corner at Night

Added on by Lara Hoke.

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. 

Lara Hoke, Oakland Corner at Night, Oil on Board


Laundry Night Hawks: A Work in Progress

Added on by Lara Hoke.

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.

Original Photograph

Laundry Night Hawks Overlay 1

Laundry Night Hawks Overlay 2Below are images of my second efforts at the painting.  I moved and minimized the corner shop and adjusted the size of the laundromat.



Laundry Night Hawks Effort 2 No Overlay

Laundry Night Hawks Overlay 6

Laundry Night Hawks Overlay 7 (reduced opacity)


One man's trash....

Added on by Lara Hoke.

The first round of coasters are complete - they have been sanded, stamped, stained, and varnished.  There are ~35 of them.   I also carved two more stamps, a hawk and a tulle elk.  I had some trouble with the elk, one of his front legs looks a bit peg-like.  I'm considering cutting him down to just a bust.

While on a run I discovered a beautiful branch in someone's trash.  I believe it is Japanese cherry.  It's significantly heavier than the pine I've been using.  I'm looking forward to seeing how different it is to work with hardwood.  I think the cuts will be more difficult but cleaner which means a lot less sanding and a lot less clean-up.

Tulle Elk


Added on by Lara Hoke.

Animal coasters in progresThis whole coaster project is finally coming to fruition.  I began stamping the wood slices en masse today and am pretty pleased with the results.  The next step will be applying thin layers of polyurethane, and sanding with a fine grain paper in between coats.

In other news, I'm looking forward to receiving my copy of The Handmade Marketplace: How to Sell Your Crafts Locally, Globally, and On-Line.  Working on my coasters and researching vendors and artists for our wedding has given me a newfound appreciation of Etsy, blogs, and craft.  How great would it be to actually make some kind of income doing something I not only love but do anyway.  Today coasters...tomorrow the world!


The flock is growing...

Added on by Lara Hoke.

The love of carving continues.  I've added an owl, quail, and squirrel to my team of woodland creatures and Ben got in on the action and carved a trout.  I ran into some problems with the squirrel - too many tiny details.  I made several mistakes and he just kept getting smaller and smaller.

Hand-carved woodland creature rubber stamps

Stamp Carving and More Coasters

Added on by Lara Hoke.

Last night I carved a second stamp for my silhouette coaster project.  It's a simple bust of a buck but I'm pleased with how it turned out.  I'm still getting the hang of the carving tools which are not as forgiving as I would like.  Below is a photo of the new stamp, the impression it makes, the back of my bear stamp, and the tools I used.

Stamp making tools

As a side note, the coaster in this picture is unfinished, please forgive the inconsistent application of stain...


Update from the Studio, February 2010 Edition

Added on by Lara Hoke.

Coasters in Various States of ProgressA few weeks ago I was trolling Design Sponge and came across this DIY project that used cedar slices to create customized silhouettes, and I thought hey, those would make great coasters.... but where do I get the wood? Meanwhile, my month-old Christmas tree sat sagging in the corner and voila! - a project was born!

Using slices of the pine tree, a stamp carving kit, and various types of stain and polyurethane, I'm working on creating an army of coasters.

Army of CoastersThe first image to the left is a close up of one coaster pretty far along in the process.  The second photo is of the gathering army.


The next three images are paintings in progress.  The first two paintings were begun months ago but never taken much further than the inititial color blocking, so I'm re-working them, trying to bringing in more colors and depth. 

The last image is Kim.  I've addd a few more transparent layers of color but what it really needs is a few days of serious work because all of the transparent layers have caused it to lose some of it's structural believability.

Looking at these paintings makes me realize two things - 1. I need to work on a big painting in which the subject is not front row and center and 2. My next portrait cannot be of a person looking to their right.



Work in Progress: Kim

Added on by Lara Hoke.

I cleaned up the studio yesterday and spent most of the afternoon and evening painting.  The images below are of Kim.  The left-most image is the painting as I left it in June.  The middle image is a photo of my studio today and a portion of the painting.  The right-most image is the painting as I left it tonight.  It may not seem like that much progress has been made, but I've shifted and repainted two of the planters, begun to paint the plants, and started to think about her hands...

Work in Progress: Living Room Christmas Tree (Update 1)

Added on by Lara Hoke.

It was another cold night in the Hoke/Kimberley household, but I still managed to get some work done.  Using a soft brush I laid out areas of light and dark (something I probably should have done right at the beginning.)  Objects are beginning to feel more solid and space more understandable. I've lost quite a bit of detail in the tree,  but that will come back in a later stage.

Work in Progress: Livingroom Christmas Tree

Added on by Lara Hoke.

I began a new drawing last night of our livingroom at Christmas time. I was huddled on the floor in a blanket and several layers of clothes (our house was not built for these temperatures!) in front of the warm glow of the television. It's my first stab at a holiday-inspired image, but these materials may not be the best for interpreting the warmth of the season...

Work in Progress Update

Added on by Lara Hoke.

Here is the first follow-up to my post from September 10. 

I tried to do a sepia wash, but the ink I used turned out more pink than I desired.  I used pieces of sand paper to remove the stain, scratching deepest into the areas intended to be the ligthest..  I then experimented with thin washes of white acrylic pant to emphasize the highlights.  I then went back in with pen and ink to bring back some of the line detail.

And for reference, here is what it looked like a few weeks ago.  Should I have stopped when I was ahead (a head?)? I'd love to hear your thoughts.



Work In Progress

Added on by Lara Hoke.

Some of the work I'm most proud of lives in the pages of my sketchbook.  Over the past several years I've tried to recreate the qualities of those drawings in various ways including projecting transparencies on canvas and photo-etching.

Below is my latest attempt, and, in my opinion, my most successful.  In these new pieces, I'm working on toned gessoed boards with pen and ink, using paper towels and water to create atmosphere and a feeling of history. The greatest advantage of this medium over my previous attempts is that, like a sketchbook, it's transportable.  I can work directly from my subject matter (as I do in my sketchbook) rather than using reference images.

Pen and ink on gessoed board.