Monday, April 20, 2015

Summer Art Camps 2015

Can't wait to have fun with all the new projects we'll be doing this year. So excited! I love sharing what I love with kids!

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Frozen Solid

I think she's done! I've wrestled with the trees a bit. Then I went and lightened the sky so that the horizon stood out more and so that you could better see the holes in the trees that the little birdies can fly through. Another artist told me once that you have to make sure and leave holes in your trees for the little birdies to fly through and I always think of it now when I can see sky through the branches! But it sure does help them look more real and less Charlie Brown Christmas tree-esque. My biggest complaint is probably how the cloud trails direct your eye to the upper right corner. Do they make it go right off the page? Or is it a nice mirror of the tree line?
By the way, this was at a rest stop/viewing point in South Dakota. First time I'd seen a whole lake frozen over!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Frozen Solitude

I love looking out on lakes that are completely frozen over. The subtle patterns on the ice are so dreamlike. Hard to portray though, especially from a distance. I really wasn't sure what to do with the sky since the photo was rather blah. I like the wispy feel of it, although the composition is bugging me. Particularly the two dark purple, partial shape-shadows that both disappear equally off the left side. In the photo the sky is quite light with such slight variations in the wintery, overcast sky. As I've tried to release myself from the need to portray things exactly as they are, I always feel this tug between creativity and reality. Like they're an angel and a devil on my shoulder. One says it'll look better if I do this while the other says, but the photo says it's supposed to be that way. So hard to know which to follow sometimes. And who will win. 
To make matters worse, I'm still not sure if I am creative enough to come up with something that will truly improve what was already there.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

The Lonely Stand

I like the horse more this after a night's sleep. Yay for sleep! Then I went and got a little carried away with the grassy foreground. It's just so hard not to - I get lost in the different shades blowing around and the movement...I don't know how to portray it without the detail yet. So I might've lost the style I was going for a bit but I do think it still works. It's that bottom triangle area that might cause me to lose some sleep. I don't think it works and I'm not entirely sure what to do about it. I'm tempted to make it the side of a river but I feel like that would mess with the uphill slant of the terrain. Maybe just add more stray grass or brownify the dirt a bit. Not sure...

Monday, April 6, 2015

The Hills are Alive

New painting...what's it's name...not really sure...hmmm...
It started out rather quickly once I was finally able to pick a picture to work from and rearrange the composition a bit in hopes that the tree and horse would balance the landscape. I like the sketchy feel of the grass, the sky and the light on the tree. The foreground clearly needs a bit of work. Like I'm not totally sure what to do... In the picture that's the gravely side of the road. Less picturesque than I'd like it to.
And then I spent the whole evening painting the horse. She kinda looks to me like she wants to catch a ride. And like she got her knees dirty. Is she too splotchy?
And what to call the painting...

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Where the Wild Mustangs Roam

The Mustangs arrived! What do you think? In the photo they were all in a line so I staggered them, bringing that middle one forward, to add more interest. It's the first time I've painted horses so it was a little intimidating to attempt to do justice to such beautiful creatures. Are they too off center though? Compositionally I do really like how the foal turns the viewer's eye back into the picture, toward the middle mustang. I think I like them though. Makes me want to go back and get more pictures of those beautiful wild mustangs in the National Park!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Pesky Backgrounds

I've been avoiding painting that lively badlands background. It's part of what makes the scene so cool, but how to have the most detail in the background? That just doesn't work. I started out stressing about getting too detailed but worried that if I didn't, you wouldn't have a hint of the cool terrain. As I finished filling it in, I realized the bigger problem was there was no depth so I glazed over it in a whitish-blue to give it some atmospheric perspective. But that washed it out way too much so I went back in to strengthen some of the shadows. I think I'm happy with it! Now back to the foreground. And the middle ground. Oh, not to mention I've never painted horses before so that could be a nerve-wracking finishing touch!