The Source

“Stoneface”
watercolor 18 x 24 inches

So . . . .tired of rocks?  Take a look at this . . . .a solid granite wall with mature oaks and ponderosa pines growing out of the cracks.  This wall could be one 1000 feet (300 meters) high . . or more.  The model is from the neighborhood of where my rocks lie . . . .Yosemite National Park in California.   The rocks seen in the previous posts fall from cliff faces like this . . .and sometimes from enormous heights.

The abstract patterns of line and shape in these cliff faces make a painter ponder them for hours on end . . . . . . .and usually go home in frustration when attempting to paint them.

More From the Binge

“Merced ZigZag”
watercolor 15 x 22 inches
You may be getting the picture that I am playing with rocks . . . .but more than that, playing with big compositional shapes. This one resembling the “S” shape.
This piece, along with the others, are all from pictures along the Merced River just below Yosemite, where the canyon is still steep and big rock slides are commonplace. Some of the rocks there are mind bogglingly huge . . . . .and their shapes are really interesting. At certain times of the day, the light and shadow make wonderful abstract patterns . . . .there must be several hundred photos of them in my computer files!
One would think ‘Painting simple things like rocks? Easy!’ Nope ! I have been messing with painting the darned things since twenty years and am still trying to master them. Sure is fun trying, though!
As for the Binge, there are more paintings to reveal later. Stay tuned.

From Afar . . .


Am in Yosemite National Park, Painting. Yes, that is all I am doing here . . .and, believe it or not, I am actually fried . . .that is to say, tired!!! I have been working hard morning, noon and night. Up early and at the easel . . .then outdoors to the magnificence of this place and try to choose something to paint. The choices are actually easy . . .stand in one place . . .just about anywhere . . .and there are 10 to 100 paintings within mere paces.

But that is not what I am here to share. To close the loop from the last post, the linemen are finished after five (count em!) that is Five separate paintings until I deemed it finished. I was searching for something near perfection for this piece as I have ideas about putting it into a show soon. We’ll see.
Try as I might, the photo seems a bit edgy, though the painting is much softer. I am not sure what to do about it, but will be paying attention to that next week when I return to my studio for more painting.
The title of the piece is “Pole Dance.” Watercolor 18 x 24 inches

Answering Urges

“Autumn Heat”
Watercolor, 22 x 30 inches

In my last post I mentioned that Open Studio is approaching this coming October 9,10 and 16,17. Okay. So you already knew that.

In getting geared up for it, I have spent much time in the studio cleaning, tidying, making displays for visitors and other stuff. While there, of course, the ideas for paintings keep showing up as I am puttering. Eventually, I find myself in vivid dreams at night until I cannot stand it any longer . . . . . . . . . . .I rise at 4AM, make the coffee and head to the studio.
Did I mention that I am going on my annual trek to Yosemite for a week long painting retreat at month end? Oh yes!! And I always begin the build the excitement a month ahead.
So, there I am in the studio mucho early and thinking about Yosemite. What am I to do? give myself a manicure????? Heck no!!! I turn on the computer in which there are hundreds of my photos of Yosemite and begin sketching. And the ideas are romping through my head at a fast gallup!
Recently, I have been playing with some opaques in my paintings, using gouache in various places to gain different effect. There is another place where I am excitedly chomping at the bit to ‘see what happens’ when I put the opaques to work. I am finding I can contrive some very interesting effects with them, as you can see in this painting.
I’ll be posting more about my experiences with gouache, as I have already completed more paintings and put it to use.