Monday, July 16, 2007

Calm Before the Storm near Braddocks Bay

We were supposed to go to a paint-out which was some distance away, but the weather was dubious and we decided to stay closer to home. It was over-cast all morning and we finished up just in time to hear thunder off in the distance. Shortly after we left, it poured.

size 9"x12", framed size is 15"x18"
Paintings come matted and framed under glass, ready for hanging.

Fishing at Dusk on Buck Pond

There is a little fishing access on Buck Pond and I went there around 7:30 at night to catch the sunset. It turned out to be an extremely busy spot. The people who were there to fish stopped to look at what I was doing and to ask about it. Even a motorcyclist passing by stopped to talk. I always enjoy talking about painting though, so I didn't mind the company.

Size 9"x12", framed size is 15"x18"
Paintings come matted and framed under glass, ready for hanging.

Tow Boat

Up at Braddocks Bay again, my attention was caught by this bright red little boat. This is something I never would have even thought to attempt before the workshop - it's complicated and has a lot of detail. But it really appealed to me and I set to work. I am very happy with the way it came out.

size 9"x12", framed size is 15"x18"
Paintings come matted and framed under glass, ready for hanging.

Summerville Beach

I have been trying to draw or paint daily since the workshop, and this is one of the first I did since I came back. This beach on Lake Ontario was largely deserted the morning I was there, but the light and view was very appealing.

Size 9"x12"

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Marc R. Hanson Workshop

I have admired the work of Minnesota artist, Marc Hanson, since my friend Chris suggested I take a look at his work a couple of years ago. When Chris told me that Marc would be doing a workshop in Michigan and that he was planning on attending, I balked at having to go such a distance from home. But Chris pointed out that this is about half-way between Rochester and Marc's home in Minnesota, and we probably wouldn't be able to see Marc any closer to Rochester for a long time. So, I signed up for the workshop and off to Michigan Chris and I went.

The whole experience was very eye-opening. Every day was a chance to completely immerse myself in art, to create art, talk to other artists who understood what was talking about and to see the world in a completely different way. I don't think I've experienced so much artistic growth in such a short time, in my life.

Marc gave me a better sense of design, composition, value... Things I never learned in the years that I've spent painting or in school.

Back in Rochester now, the transition to home-life has been very tough. I want to go out to paint all day like I did in Michigan, but responsibilities keep me home. I don't think I'd realized how much I am constantly pulled in different directions by my family's needs. I have vowed to paint everyday and am making a point to be more disciplined about getting up and out early every day. This has been easy since the kids are on summer vacation and don't really get moving until around noon. So far, so good. Now I need to work on my attitude so that I don't feel like a caged animal all of the time.

I see the world differently, now. I see potential paintings everywhere I go. I am taking my camera with me to capture the things I see since I can't paint them all. I have never been able to use photos as reference material, so I kind of think of them as notes to help me capture a mood or a sense of place that intrigues me, not necessarily something I would paint from.

I will be posting the paintings that I have done since the workshop in the very near future, so we'll see if anyone else can tell the difference before and after. I hope I will get some good input.