Tag Archives: bouquet

Watercolor Painting: Sherbert pink blossom still life

Sherbert pink blossom still life, 2017, 12x16

Sherbert pink blossom still life, 2017, 12×16

A bouquet of cut flowers against a grey background. I think I am going to try to paint this one in oils in the future, I really like the colors. The grey watercolor feels slightly weak and would be lovely in oil.

Matisse the orange kitty, not approving of the direction this painting is taking, decides to take matters into his own paws.

Watercolor painting: Pink dahlia in blue vase

Pink dahlia in blue vase, 2017, watercolor, 12×16

So my efforts to show my work earlier this year went bust. One time was at an art walk in Forest Grove when the store owner  didn’t show up. But I found this amazing flower vendor at the farmers market down the street. I was able to get these wonderful dahlias very affordably!


Painting: Little study flower vase on oriental rug

Little study flower vase on oriental rug, 2017, 5x7

Little study flower vase on oriental rug, 2017, 5×7

You can get  a view of the rug somewhat in this picture of my studio mate kitty, Matisse. Even though he looks like a demon child in this picture (reminding me how Anne McCaffrey described young willful dragons in the book Dragonflight) and has not only bitten my work and also tried to pull the table cloth out from under all my watercolors,  this kitty has been  truly such a joy and a  wonderful painting companion.

Kitty studio mate

I’m also on instagram and a little less behind on posting my new paintings.

Spring Flowers- some oil paintings

I’ve been awful about updating my blog this year. In fact I hadn’t thought about it at all when Portland artist Randall David Tipton emailed me to tell me he had read my blog post about his artwork that I wrote over a year ago. He returned the favor and highlighted a watercolor on his blog. Thank you Randall!

After a very long, wet winter (one of the wettest winters on record in Oregon), it is flower season here in Portland. This is the time of year when it is really hard for me to concentrate on doing any paintings because I just want to be out in the sun and take lots and lots of pictures.

Anyway, I wanted to update my blog to show some spring flower oil paintings I have completed recently. I wanted these to be light, bright, and colorful.  In the first painting of a quince bouquet, I wanted it to feel like a watercolor- painting with thin, transparent layers. This was successful for the most part but not sure if there’s too much ‘white’ left? What do you think? I’m going to do another one with the same technique, but start with a solid color background first to avoid that problem. I’ve prepped a canvas with a very light bright lavender. We’ll see how that goes.

Glowing quince, 2017, oil on linen, 16x20

Glowing quince, 2017, oil on linen, 16×20

This next one is also a painting done from the same quince bouquet in a teal vase but from a different perspective. I also used  a slightly different technique, painting much thicker. I think my obsession with Matisse shows a bit more here. Which one do you like more this one or the first one?

Quince bouquet, 2017, oil on canvas, 16×20

Here’s another closeup of a spring bouquet, I think composed of all the early spring blossoms:   quince, forsythia, and cherry blossom leaves. I had a lot of fun playing with color- glazing the background in teal and emerald green, creating the dark purple leaves.

Spring bouquet, teal. 2017. Oil on canvas, 16x20

Spring bouquet, teal. 2017. Oil on canvas, 16×20

An Oil Still Life in Progress

This is a painting that will probably take me a long time. I’m deliberately going about this painting in a methodical manner, using techniques like the grid system and going through with a true underpainting and then glazing layers on top. When I critique my work (like the watercolors I posted earlier) I find that my biggest issues are with composition and value. So that means getting better at drawing and finding the tonal range and also being way more patient. All of which painting in oil like this is helping me to do. I also love luminous shadows which look really great in oil paints.

Right now in this oil study I am concentrating on finding the darks and the mid tone values that will  serve as a foundation layer for lighter values that get applied later. It’s how the painting will hopefully glow.

I didn’t get to the whole painting this time which you can tell by the areas that are still pretty white- that’s not deliberate.

For the Hellebores- I used burnt umber, ultramarine blue, and some alizarin crimson. Alizarin is transparent and staining and also is good for bluer reds. For some of the lighter ranunculus, I just made a grey out of the burnt umber, ultramarine, and naples yellow. There’s also a poppy or something with more open petals that’s got a little bit of cadmium red, which is less blue than alizarin and more opaque. At this point it is so tempting to go lighter and get into the details. With oil painting, it’s actually harder to go over light paint or you get this muddy creamy effect so I’m trying to keep it dark. Its something that you kind of have to reverse your brain around, that you want to go dark first and then build form by removing value or adding lighter shades. I’m not describing it well but I ‘ll try to post better examples later.

For the greens of the leaves and the pot I started using sap green plus some of the burnt umber. If I hadn’t been so lazy and impatient with my umber drawing, I probably could have glazed right over with just the sap green.