Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Dentist Office again

When you do sketch drawing in public places, it is unbelievable how many people are playing, working, reading, or talking on their cellphones. Here is another one.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Oil Sketches: Penelope's Goats and Chicken

I went to Woody and Pen's island to paint their goats. When the sketch of the goats was finished, I did another quick one of chicken. When I was painting them, Penelope kept feeding so that they would not wander away. I said because of me, their cost of raising goats and chicken would be higher than usual. I selected a few for my sketches. Of course, they had more than what I have in the picture.

 Oil, 12 x 12

Oil, 9 x 12

Sunday, September 28, 2014

My Story in the Newspaper

Last Friday when I was painting the Carriage House on River Haven Farm, Fort Myers News Press reporter Amy Williams came to interview me. It became the cover story in the Sunday's Newspaper today. See below.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

En Plein Air: The Nordlys (Oil, 12 x 16)

Yes, you've seen the draft of the painting before. This is my friend Steve's boat. This week I went there again to paint it on canvas, still from my Noah's Ark on the Caloohahatchee River. This afternoon I got through the last stage of the formal painting process, that is, focused on the painting itself to make sure everything was logical and natural. Of course, I did embellish a little.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Plein Air Oil Sketches: Rebecca Spray-Washing the Horse and Side of the Carriage House

It was my lucky day today. I went to the River Haven Farm to paint the following two sketches, Seconds after the two paintings were done and I put everything back into my car, it began to rain. I painted the Carriage House first. When it was finished, I saw Rebecca began to bathe the horse, so I simply turned around and painted the scene.

Side of the Carriage House
Oil 12 x 19

Rebecca Spray-Washing the Horse
Oil 12 x 20

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Alla Prima Portrait: Gaberielle {Oil, 15 x 20)

Thursday, VAC Portrait Studio Day. Our headhunter Fran discovered a pretty Canadian brunette named Gaberielle at church and invited her to sit for us this morning as our portrait study model. As you could tell, Gaberielle is very pretty. She came from Toronto, Ontario. She is also a good model, professionally keeping good time.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Plein Air Sketch: Planting a New Utility Pole (Oil 12 x 12)

Cloudy. It was very cloudy this morning. I didn't even need the umbrella when I was painting en plein air. Of course, I still used it because the sun glared from behind the clouds and it made my eyes uncomfortable. Around 8:30 AM I was driving along Joel Blvd toward Highway 80, not sure where I should go to paint. But I knew I didn't want to go too far to paint. When I was nearing the intersection of Joel and Edwards Dr. I noticed some electricity workers were working on a new utility pole.  I remembered they had been working to put a new power line for the past few days and that I actually thought of painting them working as I drove by. Therefore, I immediately pulled over across from them and set up to paint. It didn't take two hours for me to complete it.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Plein Air Oil Sketch: Saturday Farmers' Market (Oil, 12 x 16)

I hesitated this morning whether I should go to the Farmers' Market at Fort Myers' Alliance of the Arts parking lot because it was cloudy and would have showers. Originally, I planned to paint the tents shining in the sun. Finally, I decided to go as planned. I went there pretty early. Right at the corner of the building, I saw a couple had already set up two tents, one white and the other orange red in color, with their two children. I like the orange tent with everything tinted in orange under it. So I decided to paint the view. The guy was very friendly. As soon as I got out of my car, he greeted me. He and his wife smiled when they heard I was going to paint their tents. I looked at the sky and told myself that I had to hurry. So immediately I set up next to my car and began to work. It was sprinkling softly most of the time. I had my umbrella open over the easel so it didn't cause a problem. When the shower came down, I had to stop and hop into my car. Fortunately, the shower didn't last very long and I got out of my car to go on with my painting. As you may tell, I rushed it through. It took only an hour and a half.

During the painting, the couple and their children came to see me paint several times. I really appreciated their compliments. Towards the end when I was packing, Scott and Sherry (that were the couple's names) came to see the painting again. Scott asked me if I was willing to sell it or trade my painting for his fish. I thanked him and told them that I allowed them to go to my blog to make a copy of it if they liked it. With those words, I gave them my card. I uploaded my paintings in high pixels, so its copy should be in good quality. To my surprise, before I was leaving, the couple asked their pretty daughter Magen to bring me a good chunk of snapper.

When I was setting up there in the morning, I happened to see my artist friend Carol Boatman who used to paint with me at SW Florida Portrait/Figure Painting group. It had been three years since we painted together last time. She came to the Alliance of the Arts today to teach a class.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Alla Prima Portrait: Linda Reading (oil 20 x 16) and Plein Air Sketch: Fishermen's Village, Punta Gorda, FL (Oil 9 x 12)

It was Portrait Studio Day at VAC Punta Gorda. Today's model was Linda. When I got there, Linda was sitting waiting. The only other person there was our activity leader Trudy. Linda asked us if she could sit there reading. I said it was all right with me. Trudy didn't have any objections. Since other members were kind of relaxed and late, Trudy and I decided to let Linda read. Linda sat for us before. Usually she likes to smile. If you go to my painting gallery, you will see Linda I painted before. She was smiling without glasses. Today, because of reading she wore glasses. I think I did this painting pretty lively and smoothly. I changed my usual color tone.

After the portrait studio session, I went across the street to the Fishermen's Village and did a quick sketch.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Plein Air Sketch: Storm's Comin' (Oil, 9 x 12)

I went out late today. After reading a book about painting everyday subjects, I felt that was exactly what I had been doing, only more self-consciously now.  I was heading for Downtown Lehigh, looking for scenes with people. First, I thought of garage mechanics. soon I dismissed the idea because the garage I knew had a small parking lot and I was afraid my kit there might interfere in their work. There was a small fleamarket not far. I thought of the vegetable vendors. When I got there, they were not in a paintable pose. There was some tents outside of the building, but no booths or vendors except for one or two picnic tables.

A guy was sitting there with his shoes taken off. When he saw me looking around, he asked,
"May I help you?"
"No, thank you," said I.
 "What are you doing?"
"I am a painter." I responded.
Before I could say anymore, he stretched his arm and shook my hand. "Me, too," he said. "Look at the paint stains!" He pointed to the dried paint on his hand and sleeves. His name was Chris. Then he said to me, "Come on in here." he motioned me to the feamarket door. He showed me to a cubicle he had obviously just started painting and said, "I am tired of doing that. If you could take it over, I let you make the money..."

I hurried to explain to him that I was an artist, not interested in painting walls. I did remember to ask, "If you can sit a little longer outside under the tent, I'd like to paint you." He said no for he had to work. Before long, his buddy, a guy named Patchy, came up holding a paper bag with a couple of beers which evidently he got from the liquor store on the same plaza. I went back to my car and regretted that I should have stayed to paint them painting the walls.

After lunch I meant to paint some strange-looking palm trees on Baisley St, Alva, but When I was driving on the road, I saw storm coming. Therefore, I turned to Harns Marsh. Like Marc Dalessio, I painted the stormy scene from inside the car. As you can imagine, I had to do it fast.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Sketch: Watching TV at Dentist Waiting Room

I stopped by at my dentist office this morning to schedule an appointment as well as to get an estimate. The front desk clerk asked me to take a seat and wait. After waiting for 10 minutes, I went out to the parking lot to get my sketch book from the car, not knowing how much longer I had to wait. There was a female patient sitting facing me and watching TV. I did a quick sketch. When I was just done with the sketch, the clerk asked me to go over to the counter. She was surprised to find I was doing the sketch because she said, "When I saw you walk out, I thought you were mad for waiting so long. I hurried to find your records." I was glad that my sketch book inadvertently sped up the process.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Oil Draft: Steve's Boat (11 x 14)

My architect friend Steve asked me to paint his boat which was docked at the River Haven Farm on the Caloosahatchee River. Since there were thick vegetation blocking the view from the dry land, Steve let me have a floating dock which I could row out on the river and paint the boat from the other side. It was fun! I set up on the dock, even with an open umbrella. It was a good thing there was only a mild breeze.

Even though Steve gave me an anchor, I tied it to the wrong side and the dock swayed slowly. Before I realized, it swayed me out of sight of the boat. Therefore, I had to retie the anchor. Next time, Steve said, he was going to give me two anchors. I made a quick sketch as a draft. As I was painting, Steve took a picture of me on my Noah's ark.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Horse Study: Cashmere Eating Breakfast (Oil 11 x 14)

  I went to the River Haven Farm this morning with the idea in my mind of painting horses bathing again. This time I planned to paint horses' wet bodies with water sparkling in the sun. I met my friend Frank there. He said he didn't think Rebecca was going to bath the horses today or on weekend but he could let me paint horses eating. So instead of putting the hay inside, he dropped it outside. Besides, Frank took the bug mask off Cashmere's head so that I could paint her in natural state instead of having the mask on. It was very nice of him to be so thoughtful.

Obviously, eating grass in the sun made her thirsty. Cashmere had to go back to the water bucket from time to time. Therefore, I had to cope with the situation. Whenever she walked away, I immediately switched to paint the background till she came back to eat. Cashmere was a horse in beautiful shape. Overall, I think I caught her form all right. I knew I had to adapt to the subject which was prone to move around. I simply wanted to challenge myself.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Alla Prima Portrait: Punta Gorda Artist Harriet (Oil 20 x 16)

Thursday, Punta Gorda VAC's Portrait Studio Day. This is not the first time Harriet sat for us. Comparatively speaking, I like this one better. I sort of challenged myself this time because I knew the tones were very subtle from this angle and it was difficult to handle the minute difference in tone and value. Overall, it is tolerable. I believe I got her likeness all right.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Oil Sketches: Tractor Garage and Bath Assisting

I went straight to Tuckhoe Road this morning. However, half way on the road, I realized that my car was spic clean after I washed away all the mud I there the other day. When I saw the wet potholes on the road, I began to hesitate. At that time, I saw some fierce-looking dogs coming my way, which helped me make my decision more easily. Since I was bitten by a dog in New York, I've become more cautious about dogs. So I made a U-turn and went to the River Haven Farm. I drove around the farm and finally decided to paint the tractor garage in the shade. The tractor was parked halfway inside the garage. Maybe there was some other machinery in there. At least the motor of the tractor got covered under roof. The plows were still hooked behind the tractor. To avoid getting them rusted with rain, a tarpaulin was thrown over them. Even though I was in the shade, too, in order to stay sharp about the value relationships and avoid letting my eyes adjust to the shade and beginning to see more light than I actually should, I walked back to stand in the sunlit road constantly to look at the scene so that I could preserve the identical impression.

When the painting was almost finished, I noticed that Rebecca washing horses at the designated horse-bathing place behind the garage. She and the horse formed a beautiful picture. I said it was a shame I didn't know she was working on the horses till the job was almost over. Rebecca said there was another horse to be washed in the afternoon. I said if so, I would come back and  paint it. Therefore, I went to the Convenient Store across Palm Beach Road. I gobbled down a sandwich and went back to the farm. Rebecca gave me a hour so that I could finish the oil sketch. I guess the horse enjoyed the thorough bath assistance.

 Tractor Garage
Oil, 12 x 16

Bath Assisting
Oil, 11 x 14

Monday, September 8, 2014

This morning when I drove across the Broadway Draw Bridge in Alva over the Caloosahatchee River, I noticed the two boats were glaring in the morning sun. So I made a left turn right off the bridge. I loved the spot. There was Alva post office there. Next to it was a place which has recently been renovated to become a restaurant on water with a dock for boaters. It has been done for quite some time but for reasons unknown, there was no activities and the place hasn't been open yet for business. Therefore, I went down to its dock and set up. Facing me was someone's home or private docks with a few boats in the morning sun. I meant to do it quick and started with mixing a grey with titanium white, orange, and ultra marine blue to unify the view. I mixed white with lemon yellow for the lightest area. However, in the process, I spent too much time on the form of the bigger boat, which was complicated in structural shape, to keep my momentum. And I became unsatisfied with the color relationships. When I got home, I started a second one as things were still fresh in my memory. The composition is the traditional "steel bar" layout. I tried to do it quickly with a set of so-called "three values"in my mind. When it's done, I found it a little too commercial and was not too crazy about it, either. You are going to figure out which is the first one and which the second is.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

En Plein Air: Palm Trees by a Country Road (Oil, 11 x 12)

My agenda this morning was to paint a scene with people, so I went to Owl Creek Boatyard. In my memory, there were always people working outside on the boat. However, I was wrong this morning. No one was working outside. I saw a worker I knew whose name was Nelso. I was thinking of painting him working inside the workshop but by the time I made the decision, I could not find him any more. I remembered next to the boatyard, there was a deserted orange grove. Now the owner was raising goats there. I often saw goats leisurely lying behind the fence by the road. So, I decided to paint the goats. I tried to be nice and pulled up some grass to feed them, believing this way I could keep them in sight behind the fence. Unfortunately, when I threw the grass over the fence, I scared these animals. They rushed right into the woods and disappeared. Since I had already set up, I simply painted the road.

Friday, September 5, 2014

En Plein Air: Morning at the Stable (Oil 9 x 12)

This morning I went to my friend Dennis' farm. As usual, I helped myself and unchained the fence door to let myself drive all the way to his house. I knocked on the door. Dennis' parrot welcomed me with a "Hello.", but his dog seemed to have forgotten me and made some noise not very hospitable. Anyway  I got the message that he and his wife must be out there somewhere in his kingdom. Therefore, I opened my trunk and got out all my painting kit with a small dolly. I pulled everything with me across the creek. When I got to his stable, the sun happened to shine on its wall with one of the horses poking out its head. I immediately decided to paint the view. The sketch took an hour and a half.

In the middle of my painting, I saw Dennis and his wife drove their four-wheeler coming toward me. We were very happy to see each other again. He was taking care of some wild animals on his farm. We chatted a little but I was worried about the rapid changing of the sunlight, so I apologized and went back to my painting. I think the sketch turns out OK.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Alla Prima Portrait: Deborah (Oil 20 x 15)

It was Thursday, VAC's Portrait Studio Day. Today's model's name is Deborah. Somehow I found it difficult to handle her skin tone. It is good they hired an African=American model.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Oil Sketch: Study of a Pine Tree (12 x 9)

This morning, I went to the intersection of Wheeler Rd. and 9th PL. I like that part of the town. It is always quiet with very little traffic. I tried to focus on something smaller so I did a study of a single pine tree in the morning sun. The sketch took an hour and half.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Oil Sketch : Morning at Harns Marsh (7 x 11)

I knew it would be hot and humid this afternoon. The weatherman said the temperature would feel like in low 100s even though it was actually only in low 90s. In order to beat the heat, I went to Harns Marsh at 8 AM and planned to do a small quick sketch. I tried to express the softness of morning sunlight on grass and plants. I might have overdone a little. Next time i would take timer with me.

Since it was Labor Day, there were quite a few fishing people including children. A guy who drove a heavy-duty truck came to my side. It was the first time I saw someone do fly-fishing. I asked him about it. He was an enthusiastic guy and told me to follow him. He tried a couple of times but there was no catch and I had to go back to finish my painting.