Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Simply....Plein Aire in 20 Minutes

2010 Plan
I'm going to try to post on my blog more often, but less. I seem to have a pile up of things I want to post and then I keep waiting to post until I have enough...and then I run out of time.
So for plan is to post at will - freely - just one here and there. I'll start with this one since it has been sitting here waiting for me to add more to it.

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This is a bench at the San Jose Historical Park. We went on a Plein Aire day to this park and there was so much to pick from to paint. I just couldn't decide. It took up most of my time to settle down and then I really wanted to paint this bench...

I have a thing for benches??? (to be thought through later)

I sketched it out and it didn't look good in my was just too busy. So then I started on a Barn. It was okay, but I really wanted to do the bench. Just then my teacher, who is in our Plein Aire group strolled over to check on his students. Before he knew about my struggles...he pointed to this bench and said..."Hey Julie did you see this bench? You should paint this."

Well I started laughing! I told him of my struggles and said I had been trying to do the bench. He looked at my sketch and said, "You should do the bench, but SIMPLIFY!"


After that I got it. I simplified all the extra lines and blocked in the brown for the bench and popped in the highlights of the bench and VIOLA!

I had the bench nailed in 20 minutes with 1 1/2 hours of struggling before.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Letting Your Light Shine Through!


I have painted a
a series of still lifes
directly from life
(not from a photo)
I've been reading "ALLA PRIMA" by Richard Schmid...
(see below)
it has so much to offer - a great overall painting book.

Best Seller ALLA PRIMA
Everything I Know About Painting

A standard in classical art education.

Fifteen years in preparation, this must have book offers to painters the wisdom and technical savvy of a lifetime. Writing as an acknowledged master, Richard Schmid leads his reader gracefully through the fundamentals and subtleties of painting technique with refreshing clarity, authority and deep affection to all who strive for self-expression, regardless of their level of skill. Soon to be in its tenth printing, it is treasured by artists worldwide.


8" x 10" oil
"Heritage" was inspired by our son's soccer coach and his wife.
We invited them over to dinner
to thank them for all their time, efforts and POSITIVE coaching!
...they brought the wine.
They make their own wine with other family members in honor of their families "Heritage". I just loved the wine bottles and after we had properly enjoyed them, I saved them. Hoping that I would paint them some day.....well 2 months later I decided to do a little..."Alla Prima" and paint them directly from life along with a spray of "Flutterby" roses from my garden.

Letting Your Light Shine Through
Our family is thankful for John and Lynn
and letting their positive light shine through
touching our lives with their warmth.

"IttyBitty Cherry" "IttyBitty Cork"

I call these "IttyBitties" because they are only 1.5" x 2" and are so fun to paint. I had some left over paint on my palette and while I was working with a student decided to do a little more "Alla Prima" painting and let the light shine through two IttyBitty subjects that I had and also enjoy.

"Mom's Tomatoes"
6" x 8" oil

Inspired by my mom's love for our family
Happy birthday from one mom to the another!

Letting Your Light Shine Through!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

First Annual PG ART RETREAT!

I'm a lucky girl friends came down to PG
with me for a few days to play art.
We had a great time
and did as much art as I could fit in.

Here are the things we did
sketching, still lifes, plein aire, watching an art dvd, plein aire painting, paint in the style of another artist, collage/circle text poetry,
eating, walking, talking, and a little shopping

as I said we had the BEST TIME!


We walked from PG to Monterey and stopped at 3 places along the way to sketch.

Working from real life is fun and difficult.
But with practice, and friends it is the best!

Sketching in a restaurant...when it is not too crowded.


We set up our own still life in the evening.
We were tired from the day,
but rejuvenated by dinner and
the chance to paint inside from a real life object.

"Sweet Peas and Tea"
9" x 12" oil

We hiked, sketched, went to an organic farm and sketched some more. and then headed to Carmel for dinner and browse through a few art galleries.

A Little Plein Aire Painting...

We tried painting in the style of another Artist

Here we are below with a couple of attempts to push ourselves to try something new.

Hangin' Out

PG Art Retreat
Artful Touches

See the world in a new light

Art, Family, Fun!....Pacific Grove Summer...2009

Lover's Point in the Sunshine

3 Plein Aire Paintings + 3 Still Lifes =
My Summer Art

Hiking and enjoying nature together

Taking Time to
the Small things
in Life!

...and the silly ones too....

Silly Boys!

Flower Market find....turns into..... art to enjoy at home!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Art Spirit

The Art Spirit
by Robert Henri
I started off my vacation finding this book at a used book store the first day.
It is a book written in 1923 by American Artist, Robert Henri.
It embodies the entire system of his teaching,
plus inspiration for those to whom
the happiness to be found through all the arts is important."There are Moments in our lives....
There are Moments in our days....
when we seem to see beyond the usual - become clairvoyant.
We reach then into reality.
Such are the moments of our greatest wisdom.
At such times there is a SONG going on within us,
as SONG to which we listen.
It fills us with SURPRISE.
We marvel at it.
We would continue to hear it.
But few are capable of holding themselves in the state of listening to their own SONG.
Intellectuality steps in and as the SONG within us is of the utmost sensitiveness,
it retires in the presence of the cold, material intellect.
We fall back and become our ordinary selves.
Yet we live in the memory of these SONGS
which in moments of intellectual inadvertence have been possible to us.
They are the pinnacles of our experience
and it is the desire to express these intimate sensations,
Robert Henri

Here are just a few of the things
I've been working on down in Pacific Grove.

Here at Ford Ord State Park
just north of the Monterey area I decided to set up.
The weather held up nicely,
only at the end (about an hour)
I was having to hold onto everything as the winds picked up.
Second day I set up at
Lover's Point in Pacific Grove was cold, and cloudy and a little windy...but I worked for 2 hours.I also took photos and uploaded them to my laptop and then painted from some of those.
Below you can see the upclose painting of the Gerber daisy in the vase.
Then...I spent about an hour on
painting the flowers I bought at the farmer's market in town.

Flower Market Find
6" x 8" oil

I really enjoyed this one
as I was very happy with
the pitcher and and the lighting.
More to Come!
"Look for what you love...
Try to capture it...
Anywhere - Everywhere
Learn to see...
To understand...
Robert Henri