Thursday, September 29, 2011


I'm leaving for San Antonio for a week to paint once more with landscape painter, Kathryn Stats. My focus for the rest of the year will be toward the outdoors but I still have a lot of figure work to share with you. I chose Anita to be the perfect bookmark till I get back; she just looks like San Antonio to me. 
My intent with this study was to paint in a fairly high key and yet still show that the light was cool and bright, leaving distinct warm shadows.
I was nearly done with the painting when I left the portrait group so I finished up when I got back to my studio, with no model. Because of that, I quit thinking "Anita" and just focused on my goals for the painting. I do like the look that ended up in her eye; I think she's remembering the Alamo. I just saw Pee Wee's Big Adventure, so now I know there's no basement at the Alamo. To be honest, I don't know if I'll even have time to visit the Alamo while I'm gone, so I might have to just remember it my own self! See you soon :-)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Pretty in Pink

This is Chelsea, the same Chelsea from a couple of posts ago. She has naturally curly hair that also looks very natural straight, so when she came to the studio one day with curly hair, I was taken aback for a moment! I very much love the curls.
This may look like all my other studies but the approach is so different that the whole thing feels different to me.
I spent a week painting with Clayton Beck and he really pushed me to see the darkest lights and the lightest darks in my subject. That's what I was concentrating on while painting Chelsea.
They should hook an artist up to a brain machine while he's working and look at the activity. Choosing and mixing paint, listening and talking, seeing really hard and translating very quickly... it's a 3-ring circus between my ears when I'm working!
There's more to come, I've been learning a lot. 

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Grand National Exhibition 2011

James' Game of Risk has been selected for the Grand National Exhibition in New York City, sponsored by the American Artists Professional League. This organization has existed since the 1920's and was founded "to advance the cause of the fine arts in America through the promotion of high standards of beauty, integrity and craftsmanship in painting, sculpture and the graphic arts (and) to emphasize the importance of order and coherent communication as prime requisites of works of art through exhibitions and publications."
The exhibition opens in November.
I'm so thankful to organizations like this who have kept representational art alive long enough to see a real revival. There are a few who have held the torch all by themselves for a long time. I wish I'd known them all along but I'm glad that I know them now. Thanks for visiting :-)