Work in Progress – Dreaming of Del Mar

I literally fell in love with San Diego while visiting my son Patrick in La Jolla last month. Here’s a painting I did of the coast at Del Mar which just won a CPS Honor Award at the Connecticut Pastel Society Member show at Gallery 53 in Meriden, CT this weekend! I used a reference photo of the coastline at Del Mar, CA for this painting.  Here are the four main stages of the painting, starting with the basic drawing, then color block-in, then starting to add details and pay attention to edges, then the final painting.

Posted in Recent work

Big Fish

I’m excited to report that my painting “Big Fish” – a large version of a smaller painting of koi in a frozen pond first painted three years ago – has been selected for inclusion in the Salmagundi Club’s Special President’s Exhibition “The Best of The Best,” on exhibit from March 21 through April 22!  This is a huge honor, and I’m thrilled!

Big Fish

Pastel on Wallis paper

14″ x 21″ (24″ x 30″ framed)

Posted in Recent work

Salmagundi Club auctions March 4 and 13

The Salmagundi Club of New York is holding its Spring series of auctions this month, on March 4, March 13 and March 18, with over 200 original paintings up for bidding!  In addition to the live auctions, online bids for each auction may also be made through www.liveauctioneers.com (search for ‘Salmagundi Club’).

This is a GREAT opportunity to acquire original framed art from some of the best contemporary realism artists out there today, as bids for every painting start at $300!  I will have 2 paintings in the auctions this month – Late Light (below, top) will be auctioned on March 4 (Lot #29), and Spring Creek (below, bottom) will be auctioned on March 13 (Lot #74).

Spring Creek (SOLD)

Late Light (SOLD)

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Regatta’s End

Regatta’s End (SOLD)

7″ x 9″   oil

Regatta’s End is another little oil painting I did recently – mostly palette knife work.  Fun!


Posted in Recent work

Driftwood Reflections

Driftwood Reflections

Oil, 9″ x 9″

I’ve also been experimenting with a square format, and this painting is the first of two that I completed recently.  (I used a brush this time, though!)

Posted in Recent work

More Adventures in Oil Painting

Bayberry Dance (SOLD)

Oil, 11″ x 14″

I love working with palette knives, and this painting Bayberry Dance is about 90% palette knife work.

Posted in Recent work

new boards

It’s been a while since I posted work in progress, but I’ve been more diligent about photographing my work in stages since I started with the new oil/turp wash and clear gesso board prep. Here are a few pix of two oil-washed board surfaces that’ll be painting in pastels once they’re fully cured.

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“Sunk” A painting in progress

I’ve been experimenting with using a very light transparent oil/turp wash on either gessoboard or on this Georgian brand oil-primed paper that’s intended for oils. Since the oil paint is so thin and the surfaces are somewhat porous, the wash soaks in and dries almost immediately. Once it’s really set, I’ve been coating the boards with Liquitex clear gesso that has a slight tooth to it when brushed onto a smooth surface – enough tooth for applying pastels with a light touch. I have been working a little more realistically in my pastel paintings recently and it may be due to that light touch factor.

This one – “Sunk” has been fun to do. The first image is my photo reference, the second image is the oil/turp wash that’s been coated with a layer of clear gesso, the third image is my refined drawing and hard pastel block-in, and the last is the final painting after I finished with the soft pastel layers. I had to keep that light touch going in applying the soft pastel layers so it wouldn’t appear chalky with all the light value areas.

Sunk (SOLD)

Pastel on oil wash


Also, here’s a detail of the boat (bottom photo). You can see the paper ‘weave’ thru the pastel layers, giving it a feeling of paint on a canvas – but it’s pastel on paper! I will continue to experiment with this surface prep technique.

I also have two large semi-abstract marsh/water scenes in the works as well, and will want them to have some boldness in them – so I may have to fiddle with the gesso layer for a heavier tooth effect. You can see their oil/turp/clear gesso starts in the “Work in Progress” section of this website.

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New paintings and news

I’ve been absolutely swamped with art and art-related projects over the past few weeks. This is so typical of me – when I have free time, I don’t always feel like painting. When I have no time, that’s when I want to paint. Sort of like how I used to do my term papers in college.  Here are a few paintings that I’ve been working on over the past few weeks (below).
Anyway, I’ve been prolific and productive, and now have a weekend ahead that includes TWO gallery show openings, ONE juried show opening, and a day’s work at the Maple & Main Gallery of Fine Art in Chester, CT. Then off to Vermont next week for a 2-day figure workshop. Christmas shopping? Haven’t even thought about it yet….

Spring Creek (SOLD)

Pastel, 9″ x 12″

Bass Rocks

Pastel, 11″ x 15″

Gloucester Morning

Pastel, 8″ x 10″

Posted in Recent work

Pastel 100 Competition

“Last Straw”    (Pastel, 24 x 30)

I’m excited to report that my painting “Last Straw” received an Honorable Mention award from The Pastel Journal for its 2011 Pastel 100 Competition,  and will appear in the April 2011 issue of the magazine!   This painting is a particular favorite of mine as it  just returned from the Pastel Society of America’s 2010 exhibition at the National Arts Club in New York.  This is my first time getting into the Pastel 100 Competition, so it’s an honor and I’m PSYCHED!

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