hydrangea flowers

hydrangea drawing

To get back into the thought world of the flower wall painting, I’ve decided to make studies of various sections of it.  Here’s a study for the clump of hydrangea flowers made using Neopastel (Caran d’Ache) on a sheet from a 14 x 17 Strathmore 400 series pad.

Here’s the whole painting as it looks at present.



another crazy little color study

garden color study (3)

I like my crazy little color studies for up-coming largish landscapes.  This one measures 13.5 x 9 inches.  Unfortunately they are nearly impossible to photograph properly.  They are hard to “read,” as it is, their whole raison d’etre being color.  Que sera sera.  What is most interesting about the study — the character of the color relationships — is also the feature that causes the photography challenge, that and Mother Nature’s grey mantle this morning, and my general naivety about the technical aspects of photography.

Later on, when it really matters, I’ll have to rephotograph all the finished works (not the studies).  I just post the studies and the work in progress stuff as a record for myself and hopefully as entertainment for my internet friends.

The study is painted using acrylic paints on unstretched canvas primed with clear acrylic.

An earlier crazy little color study was posted here:


little garden

little study for garden

Measuring 13 x 8.5 inches, this little picture is a color study for a new, upcoming landscape motif.  It’s painted on un-stretched, raw canvas treated only with clear acrylic (to make the surface less absorbent).

I like the raw color of the canvas, though I glopped on so much paint already that the raw canvas doesn’t show anymore.

Lots of garden plants are here with their slightly differing shades of green.  A couple roof tops are visible in the upper right.

fast bird


I painted the ceramic bird one evening, just to be thinking about its role in the big still life that’s in the works.  Just a fast study.  It’s a good thing to be often thinking visual thoughts.  No rules, no expectations.  Just casual painting.

painting rehearsal

green flowers study central flower

I’m working on a small flower painting today and have used this even smaller study above (8 x 10 inches) to rehearse approaches to the central section of the main painting.

The painting is textured and the study is also.  I love the freedom of acrylic paint for texture.  You can pile a lot of paint on the surface and paint right over it again in a fairly short period of time.

Some of this approach I want to translate later into oil.  But in oil the strategy will need to be a little different.

in a good place

landscape drawing dec 29

I made an oil pastel drawing of a scene that I had first drawn using the blue ball point pen.  It’s also in the works as a painting.  The drawing is 7 x 9.5 inches.

Outside a thin snow lies on the ground.  Outside it’s freezing!  But inside this drawing summer reigns eternal.

sight reading a page inside the book

foliage study #3a (2)

Scribbling out the idea … it’s like sight reading in music.  I’m not sure how the music sounds yet.  I haven’t actually heard it.  I’m reading the parts, getting figures in my head.  First I have to find out what is there.  Later I will look for interpretation.  First comes practice.  At some future juncture my hands will go straight to the notes.  You must assimilate the music.  It has to go from the page to the interior of your head.  You have to hear it a while, get a feeling for the whole, discover its anticipations, its revelations.

There’s a beginning, a middle and an end.  I don’t even know what the beginning is.  I compose the visual music at the same time that I learn it.