Tuesday, April 15, 2014

My 9 Paintings From Monterey

The last three paintings are from Friday. I painted two of them at the Fisherman's Wharf in the morning. The last painting was at the Asilomar beach in the late afternoon. A busy day!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Plein Air Convention (Part 2)

Well, the convention is over! All that's left is for Friday's "paint-out" at the Fisherman's Wharf in Monterey.

I attended some really outstanding demonstrations (in particular the demos by watercolor artists Stewart White and Andy Evansen.

I attended the Marketing Boot Camp on Tuesday-Thursday mornings and I have to say it was really informative. I took some detailed notes and I'm already itching to put some of these ideas into practice.

Anyway, here are my two paintings from yesterday and today:

This one is from the group paint-out in Carmel on Wednesday. A big cloud of fog was rolling in and was blocking out the sun, but it broke through in some places and was really illuminating. I'm going to have to paint this one bigger.

This one is from the group paint-out today in Point Lobos. Man, it was crowded. It was so much quieter when I came here before the convention started on Monday. It was also really grey outside today. What a better way to practice mixing grey colors than on a grey day? This is from the same spot I painted at on Monday, looking slightly to the left of the previous grouping of rocks. 

One of the vendors present at the convention was Michael Harding's Oil Colours. I had heard great things about his paints, but I avoided buying them online since I never had the opportunity to see them in person first. I picked up a selection of series 1 paints to try out (they gave me a couple freebies too), and I have to say I'm really blown away. These are outstanding. The paint has a nice, buttery feel to it, but still has tons of body (They even had a huge mound of yellow and green paint on a palette at their booth, with a palette knife sticking out of each. The paint is so thick you can sculpt it. I should have taken a photo).

Of the paints that I purchased, the colors I have tried so far are Titanium White, Yellow Ochre, Burnt Sienna, Raw Umber, and Ultramarine. All four of those have left me really impressed. I"ll be putting the remaining colors on my palette tomorrow. 

Well, that's it for now. I'll be waking up early to paint at the Fisherman's Wharf tomorrow. I want to try and get 4 paintings tomorrow, since I'll have a full day. That will bring my total painting haul to 10. That would be a great way to cap off my trip!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Plein Air Convention (Part 1)

Hello from Monterey!

It's day two of the Plein Air Convention and I'm having a good time seeing demos and meeting great people. I'm also happy to post four new paintings.

I drove from Phoenix on Sunday with a car full of paints and blank linen panels (and a cooler full of Coke). I arrived late afternoon in Monterey, with just enough time left in the day to paint this:

I really like painting the streams of water running down the backside of the rocks. This was on Asilomar beach.

Day Two, Monday, was spent in Point Lobos. A lot of Plein Air painters were enjoying the sun and painting (the surplus of black flies, however, were not enjoyed).

My first painting of the day was at the last parking lot, by the trailhead for China Cove. What a beautiful place. The cove (not pictured) is an incredible green color. 

The second painting of the day was done in Whaler's Cove. There's tons of poison oak here, so you've got to be careful. These rock outcroppings really intrigued me. I'll be painting these again for sure. 

Tuesday the convention ended at 4 (I'm disappointed it is being cut short each day for people to paint. At $1000 for a ticket, I would like more demonstrations than last year... not fewer!) I drove to the Asilomar beaches and knocked this one out. The weather got really cold and a fog started coming in. Every now and then a hole would open up in the sky and the sun would shine down on the water like a spotlight. Very cool.

On these paintings I used my "chromatic palette", which consists of: Titanium White (Utrecht), Cadmium Yellow Light, Cadmium Orange, Cadmium Red Light, Crimson Lake (Holbein), Dioxazine Purple, Ultramarine, Viridian Hue (Holbein), Brilliant Green (Utrecht), Yellow Green (Utrecht). 

This palette is all about using compliments to neutralize, rather than earth colors or black. I feel like I have the most control of my colors, because I can make color shifts as subtle as I want. This is especially valuable in mixing greys.

The one exception to this palette is the fourth painting, of the overcast/grey seascape. I received a free tube of Cadmium Red Deep from Richeson at the convention, and I also purchased a few Michael Harding oils here (I've been wanting to try them out for a while now, and finally I got some). This painting had the addition of four colors: Cadmium Red Deep in place of Crimson Lake, and Michael Harding Ultramarine, Raw Umber, and Burnt Sienna. I normally avoid earth colors, but I decided to give them a shot on such a grey day. 

The Cadmium Red Deep was used when mixing with Viridian Hue. Cool reds and cool greens mixed together get neutral purples/blues, and you can bend the mixture more to the green or more to the red side. It's really great for painting the Pacific ocean. Cadmium Red Deep is lower in intensity than Crimson Lake, and a little warmer. The mixture with Viridian Hue is a bit more blue and less intense. Crimson+Viridian yields more intense colors, and the middle mixture tends to be very purple. For a painting filled with neutral tones, I went with Cadmium.

That's it for now. Stay tuned for more...