Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Black Board

As anyone who's tried to take a photo thru glass knows, you usually get something like this.....
All glare, and often almost a mirror of the photo-taker.   

In my haste I forget to take a final photo of commissions for my own records before it's all framed up under glass.   The proper way is of course, remember to take good photos before but there is a way to take a photo if you forget.....

I use a black board.  I painted a large piece of cardboard with black tempra paint.  I used tempra as I had it on hand, and its very flat when dried.   I have used felt in the past, but it got little lints fuzzies so I think this one will work better.

As you can see, there is a little hole cut in the middle, where I stick my camera lens thru.    This cannot be too big or light will poke around the edges, making little glare spots.    This isn't for high quality photos, but does the job fairly well for certain uses.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Beautiful Light

On Sunday, I went for a drive.  That evening had some beautiful light bouncing around, like the air was shimmering with gold.    I am collecting some extra photos, just in case winter is long!   

As I was creeping along a gravel road, I stopped at this hay field, the light was amazing!   Then I just couldn't wait, I grabbed my french easel out of the car and set up.

I used a piece of Uart toned a very bright warm yellow.   I didn't have my 'extras' bag, so no other tools than pastels; no sketchbook, no way to do an under layer of any sort.  Plus the light was not going to be there for long, the race was on! 

I worked small, around 6x9ish, and went with very bold color, laying it down without a lot of layering, which is what I normally do.  

I worked until I was 90% done, then the light was gone, and it was time to get off the road.   I laid in the darker purple-blues in the foreground when I got home, taking a minute at the location to try and take a very detailed mental image, even choosing which stick I'd try once I got home.   The play on light and color between that deep shadowed area and quickly going into the intensely bright lemon greens is what made me screech to a stop.

I am pleased with the results, what do you think?  

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

DeSmet Paint Out

Whew!   This one might be long, so go grab a cuppa and sit for a bit with me....

The annual DeSmet paint out, thru the Harvey Dunn Society was held this past weekend.  I heard there were over 50 artists!   No wonder, its a really good paint out!

The little church at the Laura Ingall's homestead site

And there is never a lack of subjects; no matter if you are into scenery or architecture.

Heading home, and our little home on wheels is a mess!
I arrived on Thursday so I could drive around and get the feel for the place again.   Arty was a real trooper, and his favorite spot was our bed that is in the back of my tahoe.  

It rained hard with strong winds Thursday night and I really felt for those poor souls who camped in tents!   We were snug in our Tahotel!

On Friday afternoon, we had some funnel
Painting about 10 minutes after the funnel clouds!   This is my
full french easel and golfing umbrella.   The towel is from
my shower, getting sun dried.
The road went right thru this pond, and when I
walked or drove slowly, several turtles and hundreds
of frogs jumped!
clouds move in.  I heard they took a roof off!    I seen 3 of them, and within another 10 minutes, the sky was bright blue again!

I used both of my painting set ups....full french easel and my homemade pochade box.   I decide on a subject then choose the set up that would work best; if the view is better at a lower eye level, I sit and use the pochade in my lap.   Those pieces are also the smaller ones, as it can only go 9x12.   For larger sizes my french easel comes out.

I know many have tossed out the good old french easel for being too heavy and awkward to set up, but for pastels, I think its about the best.   It protects the pastels so very well, and holds many, along with extra supplies.  Solid and sturdy in winds, and can hold a fairly large paper.  

Mine is a Mabef and its been around a while, abused and used and is still in great condition.   There are ways to use a cart if its too heavy, but I usually don't take it much further than this from my car.  

I completed 6 small works, all on Uart paper.    Three of those found new homes at the wet paint sale on Sunday.  And as usual, I didn't get photos until they were in frames and glass = glare!    

I also sold a few of my 30/30 paintings from April, as this paint out sale allowed up to 6 'other' works.
A huge THANK YOU!  to those who bought my work!

Some of the remaining 30/30 paintings I had along went to the South Dakota Art Museum in Brookings for their gift shop.   They have been selling my goat milk soaps for some time now, and I am excited to have my paintings there now too!  

This paint out is already scheduled in for the second weekend in August, 2017.   I am going to do a pastel demo there on Saturday; mark the calendar!    I would love to see you there and answer any pastel questions you have.

Monday, August 8, 2016

Name that Painting!

Avera project  16x20, up for auction on August 20th!
This weekend I completed a painting that I had been asked to do for the Avera Gregory Hospital Beefsteak Banquet live auction on August 20th.   It was to be 'hills, scenery, something from around Gregory county."   So this piece was stitched together from 3-4 places very close to my home.   
Here is the beginning....a 16x20 piece of uart600, and an underwash.

I had already added some pastel in the sky by this time, the blue, but the rest is just the underpainting.   That helps get rid of the white 'holes' and gets things moving much quicker.

Part of the fun is the winner gets to name the painting!  I wish I had someone help me name them all, that can be hard!   

And don't forget my Dog Days Special, where some of the proceeds of each dog portrait thru the month of August will go to the Rescues Unlimited shelter for vet bills.   Help a dog out!  

Friday, August 5, 2016

Dog Days Special!


"Tater"   private collection
"Queenie"  private collection

A portrait ready to hang or gift.   $135 in August only!
August is known for its hot 'dog days' of summer.   As I was out riding, I had a brainstorm....

For the month of August, I will donate $20 to our local rescue, Rescues Unlimited, for every dog portrait booked and paid in full.  

Those folks do a good job, taking in and caring for dogs others have let down.   Then finding them homes, often keeping them for quite some time, on their own budget, until someone comes along to claim them into their family.  

I love dogs, and have wanted to help this Rescue, and what a perfect match!   So, all I need is a good photo; either yours or if within a close range, I can take them myself.

  You will get an 8x10 pastel portrait, in a presentation frame ready to hang or give as a gift.  

The Rescue will get $20 for each painting, which they will use for a large vet bill to help a little puppy who needs an operation.  

This offer is good all thru August--we need not finalize the painting, but it must be paid for by the end of August so I can get the monies to the Rescue.   Only $135 (plus tax) thru August only.   

So let's get that puppy her operation!