Saturday, December 31, 2016

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Harford county Plein Air paint out

 Ladew Garden Topiary 

See dar trees? 
Participating in the Harforf Paint out this year has been a bit of a struggle to get out and paint after a day of school but well worth it . 

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Art du Pastel en France Award at the PSA show 2016 NYC

" “Spring Thaw”, my drawing that won the Art du Pastel en France ,  was probably the “edgiest” painting I have ever done. Early in the spring, when the snows of winter had finally melted away, I went walking through the woods and into the lower pasture on the farm behind our house. I came upon a pile of bones from a cow that didn't make it through the winter blizzards. The warm tones of the setting sun cast colorful shadows on the bones and I was struck by the beauty of their forms as well as the sadness of the ravages of winter.   At the time, I was growing a bit weary of the majestic, pastoral scenery of much contemporary landscape painting, including my own.   This painting is my reaction to "pretty pictures that hang over the couch”.   I wanted to see if I could take a subject normally thought of as disgusting or disturbing and show how light and shadow can transform it. It's nature and the cycle of life brutal, sad, and, beautiful.  Spring Thaw" won the Art du Pastel en France award at the Pastel Society of America show this year. 
This was my first time in the show and a great honor to be selected let alone get picked for an award. Kate and I took the Megabus up to NYC for the day and attended the show in the National Arts Club, a magnificent mansion in Gramercy Park.  That makes three awards for this painting. Time to retire this racehorse.  

 Pastel Society of America 2016
 “A primary mandate of the Pastel Society of America (PSA) is to provide a forum for the exhibition of works by the most accomplished pastel artists in the United States and abroad.”
“Six hundred seventy-five artists submitted a total of 1,496 images. Of those artists, 487 were PSA members and 188 were non-members. Thirty-nine artists entered from Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Egypt, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Israel, Malaysia, Poland, Spain, Taiwan, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.”

“One hundred seventy-five artworks were selected for exhibition. The exhibition, the culmination of PSA activities for the year, acknowledges the professional excellence of participating artists and helps promote the finest examples of pastel to the public, the professional art world, art students, and art collectors.”         (psa website)   the Art du Pastel en France  is the award given by the French version of the PSA.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

After the Rain

This tree is at the ice pond on the trail to Roostercomb Mt. After a rain storm the sun came out and illuminated this pinetree from behind and just lit it up like a green spear 8x10in pastel 

Monday, July 11, 2016

Vapor Trail

I've painted these white houses many times . I am drawn back to them because the morning light ccasts such cool shadows. The houses are like monopoly pieces set down on a gameboard. It was a hot  clear morning in Keene Valley,NY. these houses are next to the school and behind the firehouse. I left the vapor trail in the sky because I thought it leads the eye down into the pines. It also suggests this 21st cen presence of life in a limeless landscape. 12x16in

Monday, July 4, 2016

Two More for Keene Valley

Cold Frosty Morning - Marcy field 
We usually see Marcy field green with grass but This morning there was a silver frost on the grass that disappeared as soon as the sun came up. The footprints were mine. 10x10in oil 

Noonmark Mt 
I tried to be a little flatter with my paints. Painting a landscape should be like assembling puzzzle pieces. 10x22in oil 

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

"Old Mountain" Phelps

Orson Schofield (Old Mountain) Phelps (May 6, 1817 - April 14, 1905) was an early Adirondack guide from Keene ValleyPhelps named many of the Adirondack High Peaks, and cut the first trail up Mount Marcy.[4] Phelps Mountain is named in his honor.Phelps' image was made famous in paintings by Winslow Homer, and photographer Seneca Ray Stoddard. . (Wikipedia
 Fellow artist and exhibitor,George Ludlow, came up with an interesting challenge. Last year when we were discussing some paintings he did of Old Mountain Phelps,he thought it would be fun if everyone in our next  show would produce a painting of Phelps. I couldn't stop thinking about it, especially when i saw the tangle of his beard. It reminded me of a topographical map. 
In a departure from  my usual techniques of oil and pastel  i created a collage  from a 1907 map of the high peaks (no actual map was harmed in this process) The pack he is carrying IS an contemporary map I used in hiking and was in tatters.   In his beard I included all the places Phelps might have been familiar with. After that I had to figure out what to make his shirt out of. I used actual birch bark. The vest and background are pieces of hand made paper. The face I drew with a quill pen. I framed it with an actual Victorian frame from his era.This project was a lot of fun and a real welcome break from my usual landscape painting. 11x14 Mixed media collage in Victorian frame.           

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Johns Brook Sketch

In the shade the white water looked quite blue
11x17in pastel  

Wash Day

Just outside of Keene. I enjoyed the play of light and shadow. 9x12in oil  

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Dawn on Chapel Pond

The first light of the morning as the Sun comes up over Giant Mt. 18x18in pastel   

First Sun in the Valley

At Dawn on Chapel pond the sun peeks over the mountain. This view is looking up at Giant Mt from the road at Chapel pond on the way to Keene Valley pastel  11x17in 

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Cairn Study -Family

A group of Cairns I discovered on Owlhead Lookout
10x10in oil  

Monday, March 28, 2016

Cars of Keene Valley


12x12 oil on birch panel
12x12 oil

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Keene Valley Car #1 (Sloth)

Keene Valley , NY must have more antique cars per square mile than Jay Leno's garage. I love discovering them as I walk through the town. Folks  garage them all winter and drive them to the market or to dinner at the Ausable Club in the summertime. They appeal to me for their color, shape , and humor. After so many beautiful landscapes painted it's fun to change it up and do a colorful old car. I plan to do a series of full frontals because they remind me of faces. It occurred to me that it might be interesting  to name them after the 7 deadly sins ,( or virtues) . We'll see.  12x12in oil   

Monday, March 7, 2016

March Paintings

DRYDOCK,- the Skipjack Martha Lewis
  16x20in oil on acrylic 

Keene Vally Firetruck 
10x10in oil 

Here are two paintings I finished this weekend. The top is a Skipjack in Havre de Grace, MD pulled out of the water for repairs. It's one of the last workboats on the Chesapeake Bay. I sketched the boat then made an underpainting in acrylic. The acrylic dries fast  and I can then paint over in oils. The second painting is my annual donation the the Keene Valley firedept. Each year since 2009 I have painted the firetruck in different locations for a fundraiser in the summer.   It's nice that they park it somewhere different every year. I don't think they do it for me.  

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Summer of 48

Came upon this classic automobile in front of St, Brendan's Church in Keene, NY. I was not only attracted by the subject but by how the sky was reflected in the black of the paint. I got to mix my blacks and cerulean blues!  I began with a sharply delineated drawing, mapping out color shapes then a quick underpainting in acrylics , finishing off in oils.  . 12x12in oil 

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Augies' Village ( Lost Dog)

I came upon this wonderful Christmas toy village made of wooden blocks at a friends house. It was lit up by a table lamp. I was intrigued by the shadows as if it was a real village, so real that I added my friends dog, Augie. 21x21in.charcoal

Monday, January 25, 2016

October View

 I went back to Keene Valley in October and composed this sketch from the porch overlooking the Ausable River. Lots more color than my summer view. Ive been working on off and on since then 18 x24 pastel  

Snow Day Paintings

crabby boys 11x14 oil

Magness' Barn- Solstice sunset 11x14 pastel 
 Maryland has been hammered with a blizzard for 3  days and Monday (today) was a SNOW DAY! Being a teacher, I look forward to snow days as much as the kids. When its cold and nasty I like to paint pictures that remind me of hot summer days. I started Crabby boys some time ago but never put in the bridge until today. It was a hot July dawn on the Severn River when the soft shell crabbers slowly motored up and down the shore.
The Magness' Barn is on the farm behind my house. The property has been sold for development and is now abandoned. I walked over on a clear evening in Dec. just in time to catch the evening sun on the barn.