Monday, March 20, 2017

Beach Shelter in Winter

Beach Shelter in Winter - In Progress

This is the view from my childhood home, done from a photo taken by my niece just last week during a snowstorm.   Thank you Stefanie!  The shelters today look no different than they did fifty years ago, and I'm thinking that anyone who walks, runs or rides along Day Boulevard should recognize the shape of the roofline over the benches.  During the summer, they provide nice shade and during the winter, they provide material for a nice painting.


Beach Shelter in Winter

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Soda Water with Lemon aka "Distracted"


I liked the casual pose of this figure at the bar.  She had some kind of refreshment with lemon and was talking on the phone.   She had a distracted look, and it was as if her sidelong glance was saying "I'm not buying it."   ... or something to that effect.  :))

The face and hands were worked in a glazed, realistic manner, but the rest of the painting was loosely painted, giving a more abstract feel.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Painting and Sketching in Tropical Paradise

In the beautiful island country of Jamaica, the delights were many: people, music, balmy breezes, cuisine and most of all, a rainbow of vibrant and colorful scenes.   I longed to paint with my oils, but this vacation was designed around the theme of "R&R."  Dealing with wet oil paintings in a beautiful hotel setting would have been too scary, and frankly stressful.    My fallback was watercolor and sketching, adequate substitutes and actually good for brushing up on different skills.    
There were many talented musicians strolling along the beach.  They periodically pausing to perform a few songs for tips.   They stayed long enough to be captured in pencil, which I share here.  Sketching on the fly was good practice, especially for a plein air painter like myself.

My favorite musician was Donnavan Darymple, who also performed some evenings at the hotel

We snorkeling along a reef about a mile from the hotel with local guides.   Back ashore, painting the underwater world with watercolor seemed pretty natural. Although I do find watercolor challenging, letting the wet colors run together was fun, as was playing with the masking fluid.      
Underwater I
Underwater II

Underwater III

The frog is a New England "feller" painted from a photograph.   I actually painted this one first, as I was getting re-accustomed to watercolor.   As you can see, I approached it very much like an oil painting (covering the whole surface, layering, accentuating the darks).

Under the Shade Tree
One very nice aspect of the hotel's beach was that it had a large swathe of shade trees.    There was no problem shifting our chairs from shade to sunshine and back again.   This painting was done from under the tree where I spent most of my vacation.

Watercolor by Paul Thomas
 Last but not least is a painting done by Jamaican Watercolorist Paul Thomas.  He and I had a nice conversation at our beach where he was set up selling his beautiful depictions of the local scenes.   His hummingbird paintings were amazing - I wish I had taken a photo!    I gave him a block of watercolor paper as it had come to my attention that getting supplies on the island was not easy.   He most graciously painted the scene shown here.   He sure knows how to mix that beautiful turquoise that I was having a hard time achieving!  Thank you Paul!