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Friday, January 25, 2013

Duck Tales

This was my plein air study (above)

 "The Family That Quacks Together, Stays Together" (above)

"Off to Swimming Lessons"  (above)
Besides the usual subjects of chickens and cows, I added DUCKS to the lineup over the past 6 months.  I spent time at a local farm painting these ducks plein air (which is a BIG challenge, since they never ever sit still).  However, the plein air study was invaluable for appropriate color notes as I worked on some of these larger paintings.
The farmer also talked to me about how to identify the gender of these ducks.  One way is the difference in Quacks....which I didn't catch on to.  The other is the feathers.  If a duck has a curled tailed feather, it is the male! 
Enjoy these two paintings of this entertaining duck family.

Monday, January 14, 2013

About Face

While I consider myself mainly a landscape artist, I have always enjoyed drawing and painting portraits.  I did my first real portrait drawing back in high school.  Then, in college I discovered there is more than just ONE pencil and ONE eraser!!!  I was introduced to a whole range of pencils (10 different leads) that created so many neat effects.  The kneaded eraser was also a new concept for me that enhanced so many drawings. 
During my college years I was asked by a friend to create a portrait of his dear grandfather.  I remembered the family was thrilled at the result (pencil portrait above, 1982) because this gentleman was a devout Catholic who attended Mass daily and the nuns all LOVED the portrait.  That made me smile.
Now on to painting portraits with oils.  That's a whole different ballgame for me and a huge challenge.  I have been blessed to be part of a portrait painting group for about ten years now that is full of learning and fellowship.  Often, I have many "scrapers" but this one posted above was a keeper for me.  I felt the model was in a very reflective state of mind and I am hopeful I captured her emotion.