First Watercolor Portrait of the year

Watercolor on Masa Paper, 10.5×7″

I have found two long pose sessions for painting directly from the model. There is one session on Tuesday mornings and one session on Wednesday evenings. That’s qualified good news. I say qualified because it is kind of far from home. But, everything is far from home around here so I have to re-calibrate my notions of distance. My quick pose group is a 35 minute drive. This group is 1 hour away in good weather. It took me an hour and a half in light snow. Granted this was during rush hour but rush hour around here is usually a piece of cake. Its not nearly as irritating as rush hour in Chicago! I don’t think I will venture out to drive to this session in snow again. It was just too dicey. I will, however, split my time between the long pose group and my quick pose group, which is only 35 minutes away.

The background for this is invented. The drapery was black. I am a colorist. I love color and with this girl’s dark hair a black background would be ineffective. Her hair would sink into the blackness and not be seen while the contrast with the rest of her might be too overpowering. So I selected a cool blue-green, a warmer yellow-green with a blush towards orange. The greens are complements to the flesh tones and the orange is a complement to the blue of the shirt.

I would love to see more pattern. I am a freak for pattern! But with a group, one has to compromise. I may be able to cajole this conservative,  academic group into some rockin’ color in time. black, gray, brown and khaki backgrounds just don’t make my heart go pitter-pat. I love to lavish my set-ups with gorgeous patterns. I like to use sarongs precisely because of their brilliant colors and patterns. Sarongs are so right!

T F m
January 17, 2016

Art, Painting and Life

Across the Bay to Vesuvius
Watercolor on Masa Paper, 7.5×3.75″

After resolving some website issues with my web guru, I am now able to post new images. The inability to get into my blog to write a new blog, and activities with both art and life have been the reasons for the long delay between my last post and this one. First, I had bronchitis which knocked the starch out of me. I found the need to nap mid afternoon. I never nap during the day because then I cant sleep at night. I went to Florida for a wedding. We had to fly and I hate flying. Flying has become a test of patience going through security. Then its how long can one endure sardine city during the flight. I avoid flying if I can.

This is an image painted on Capri just before the painting of the previous post. I just looked to the right and I could see across the bay to Mt. Vesuvius. The whole bay of Naples is a gigantic caldera; a super volcano on the order of Yellowstone. When we visited Pompeii, just on the other side of the Sorrento peninsula, we had a tour guide who grew up guiding people around the site. His father worked there restoring archaeological artifacts from the ancient town. When he was a young man, group of vulcanologists came to study the mountain. One of them took a liking to our guide and advised him to move at least 40 miles from the mountain. Vesuvius, he said, was one of the most dangerous mountains in the world. It was overdue for an event on a scale of the 70 C.E. eruption. With the large population in the area, escape at the time of the event would be impossible. Move away now and take your family with you. He did so with no regrets. Now he is retired and giving guided tours of Pompeii to tour groups.

That threat seemed very remote looking across a peaceful bay to to the mist clothed mountain in the painting.


T F m
January 2, 2016