TBT- On Thursday mornings I’ll be giving you a look at art I’ve created over the past twenty years. Today…”A Grand Morning” oil from 2007. A different part of the Grand Tetons in the fall. It’s currently hanging on the wall in our dining area.
I just returned from four great days at Delger Camp, operated in conjunction with Nomadic Journeys, and which is located at the Khogno Khan Nature Reserve, about six hours west of Ulaanbaatar. Staying in one place for awhile is very useful for getting in serious painting time. I do quick pen and ink sketches while on the road, but there’s usually not time to get out the watercolors.
Along with the paintings and sketches from this current trip, I also thought I’d share other pieces I’ve done up to now. Everything was photographed in less than optimal conditions in the apartment I have the use of, but I felt that sharing them while I’m still here would be fun and have an immediacy that would be missing if I waited until I get home in a couple of weeks.
They were done with either a Winsor Newton Cotman watercolor travel set or Yarka poured pigment watercolors and a Robert Simmons Sapphire brush. The paper is either Arches 140lb cold-pressed or a w/c paper I brought back from the Lake District in England many years ago. The pen sketches were done in a 7×5″ Pentalic Nature Sketchbook. I used a non-waterproof pen with a Koi waterbrush for the one with the tone and a .01 Sakura Micron pen for the others.
I’m extremely pleased to announce that my friend and colleague James Coe will be coming to northern California to hold his first ever workshop out here in July! Below are all the details. We expect his workshop to fill up, so get your reservation in soon! As I’ve made the arrangements, please direct any questions to me.
Nationally known landscape painter, bird artist and author James Coe will be giving his first-ever West Coast workshop, “Plein Air Landscape Painting in Oils”, July 9-14, 2012, to be hosted by Westhaven Center for the Arts.
This will be an intensive 5-day program which will explore the challenges of working en plein air directly from the landscape and also introduce the traditional methods and materials of alla prima (direct) painting in oil. There will be a presentation and orientation session Monday evening which will include topics ranging from the history of plein-air painting to the preparation of homemade painting panels for use in the field. The session will also include a step-by-step presentation of the instructor painting outdoors and in the studio, using plein air studies as references for larger studio canvases.
The workshop will be based at Westhaven Center for the Arts, which is located in Humboldt County on the beautiful and scenic north coast of California, about six hours north by car from San Francisco. Painting locations will include coastal seascapes and beaches, redwood forests and the nearby fishing town of Trinidad.
PLEIN AIR LANDSCAPE PAINTING IN OIL- Workshop information:
Instructor: James Coe
Dates: July 9-14 (Monday evening orientation, Tuesday-Saturday plein air sessions)
Workshop fee: $600 ($100 deposit due upon sign-up)
Class size: maximum of 10
Location: Westhaven Center for the Arts
501 S. Westhaven Dr.
Westhaven, CA 95570
Supply list, travel information and lodging/meal options will be provided upon registration (fee is for workshop only)
For more information or to reserve a space, call Susan Fox at 707 496 1246 or email her at sfox at foxstudio dot biz (email address format is to foil web crawlers; use normal format for emailing me)
About James Coe: Jim’s oil landscapes, which typically feature natural settings and rural scenes from New York’s Hudson River Valley and Northern Catskills, are recognized for their naturalistic palette and painterly handling.
A signature member of the Oil Painters of America, and chosen in 2011 as a Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum Master Wildlife Artist, Jim has been featured recently in PleinAir magazine, Western Art Collector and Wildlife Art Journal.
His art has appeared on the covers of Sanctuary, Bird Watcher’s Digest, Birding World and The Auk, the professional Journal of the American Ornithologists Union. He is represented in the permanent collections of the New York State Museum, Hiram Blauvelt Art Museum, Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum, Massachusetts Audubon Society and the Bennington Center for the Arts.
Jim lives with his wife and two children in a farmhouse on the western rim of the Hudson River Valley, where he continues to seek a balance between plein air landscapes and larger studio canvases of birds in natural settings.
Over time, I think most painters end up with preferences for size, ranging from true miniatures that may only be an inch by an inch to, well, big, really big. Like ten feet high.
I’ve tended to stay in a middle range, which happens to be what has NOT been selling during the recession. But before the meltdown, I had decided to start doing art festivals and I needed a large body of work. Most of the paintings are 12×16″ to 18×24″.
Then I joined the Lost Coast Daily Painters and found myself needing to have a small (5×7″ to 8×10″) painting to post every week. It was hard at first to work that small, but I got used to it and started to see some definite advantages:
One, they are more affordable for people.
Two, many buyers and collectors don’t have room anymore for work that is much bigger and it encourages them to take a chance on a new artist. That would be me.
Three, small works seem to be considered appropriate for gift-giving, so that expands the market a little.
Four, for me as an artist, I’ve found that it’s a good way to study various painting problems, like capturing light effects, without investing time and materials in a larger piece that might not pan out.
Five, they force me to focus on one idea and to keep it simple.
Here are three recent small works:
I wanted to capture the light effect of dark clouds and sunny areas. Working in a square format was fun, too.
I’ve struggled with how to paint this kind of light effect- foreground shade and background sun. It’s a push and pull process. I think this works pretty well.
Once again, I’m studying how to do a light effect- the high key shadows and reflected light on the head of the giraffe. I also ended up with a postive/negative shape relationship that I like. The color of the giraffe and the sky form a complementary color relationship, too.
What has evolved over the past year is an interesting split that is working well for me. I’m doing a lot of smaller pieces like the ones above (I plan to have 30 or so available at the Marin Art Festival). And then I’m painting larger, major pieces that can require a lot of preliminary work. With luck, you’ll see the latest one next week.
“Camel Rock Sunset” is a scene well-known to locals. The beach from which the rock formation can be viewed is always one of the most popular. And Camel Rock, seen on the right, is a local landmark. Click to bid here
“Wine Country Scene” is a study of lovely fall colors that I saw in the Napa Valley some years ago. I really liked the contrast of the upright landscape trees, the intense warm colors of the grape leaves and the spot of pink lavender. Click to bid here
“Back Country Summer, Humboldt County” is a typical late summer scene in southern Humboldt County, California on the road between Petrolia and Honeydew. Although world-renowned for its coast redwoods, the inland areas have rolling hills and prairies with native oaks and often eucalyptus trees planted by early settlers. I wanted to capture a sense of the stillness of hot summer day and the contrast of the rich greens of the trees with the golden grass. Click to bid here
For more information or to bid, click here
For more information or to purchase, click here