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An update after a long time

Yep, I’ve been delinquent. Haven’t been to this blog for a long, long time. It can get overwhelming. I have three “main” blogs! That’s too many blogs.

But I’m going to try to be more regular in my updating from now on. We’ll see how that works.

In this post I’m just touching base, posting a few new paintings, and explaining where I’m going from here.

First, the paintings:

“Stare,” 8×8″ oil on Gessobord. Thanks to djwar93 on DeviantArt for the stock photo I used as inspiration!

This was painted last month, and was an exploration of warm and cool light. I also was transfixed by the intense expression on the model’s face.

“Mr. Stinky” oil on panel, 8×8″.

And yes, I do cat portraits too! This is a household cat, who has some Maine Coon in him (we think). This painting was done earlier this year. Mr. Stinky has now fallen ill. 🙁 I’m so glad I did a portrait of him when he was feeling (and looking) healthy.

So anyway, these two paintings were done in the last six months or so, and the improvement I see is mainly due to some much-needed instruction I received from a young, brilliant artist, Adam Clague. I don’t feel I’m a novice in painting, or drawing, but I was dissatisfied with my understanding of color (as in interpreting the color I see) and Adam has helped me immeasurably with that!

So now my blog will not only talk about art materials (a favorite passion) but I can also impart tidbits of wisdom about color, that I’ve gleaned from my time spent learning from Adam. (Thank you again, Adam! 😀 )

What I’ve learned about color is more complex than just “harmonious” color, color combinations and so forth (which I learned in art school and which I think—hope—I understand to some small extent) but the “rules” of how color falls upon the objects we see, what colors turn “warm” and when, what colors turn “cool” and why, and so forth. Understanding these principles makes for more evocative color, more “real” and convincing color. But you don’t throw out what you know about color combinations either, color schemes and so forth. You use all these bits of knowledge to your painting.

Needless to say, my grasp of all of this is still in progress. I feel a bit sheepish, but at the same time supremely excited! To think it took me this long to learn this! And yet this happens all the time, to many artists, of all ages and stages in their art career. And we shouldn’t feel ashamed at all, just grateful and excited that we’re now finally starting to “get” it.

So that’s my update for now. Hopefully from now on, my posts will be a little more regular.

Student Oil Paint—painting on a budget, intro and advice

This is going to be the first in probably many “Budget-Minded and Student” tutorials. One thing I know is that when you’re starting out in art (or even if you’re not) you usually are short on funds. Or maybe you hate to spend a lot, regardless.

In any case, this post is for you.

There’s a lot to cover, so I may end up making several posts about this. Hopefully this post will prove to be a helpful start.


One mistake a lot of newbies and beginners make is to think that because they’re just learning, that they don’t “deserve” anything better yet. Why waste the money? They’re just beginners!read more

Limited Palette – Goth Boy (FINISHED)

Well, as finished as it’s gonna get! Refer to this page (the WIP post for this painting) for info on the color palette used. This was a very fun exercise and I’m fully planning on doing this again!

Goth Boy, oil 4×5″ canvas panel. Thanks to XXMAUROXX on DeviantArt for reference photo.

read more

“Suspicion” oil study, 8×8 inches

I’ve been doing this series of portrait studies, exploring the expressions or emotions on people’s faces. I call them the “Novela” series, because I’m inspired by those fabulous Spanish-language soap operas and all their drama and campiness!

oil sketch, 8x8 inches

“Suspicion” – oil on a SourceTek oil-primed linen panel, 8×8 inches

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Limited Palette – Gothy guy (WORK IN PROGRESS)

Here is a WORK IN PROGRESS. I actually got quite a bit done with this little oil sketch the other day, but I hesitate to call this finished. There are some areas that definitely need to be tweaked.

Goth guy, oil in 4×5 inch canvas panel, WORK IN PROGRESS

I did this the other night on a whim. Maybe I took an hour on it; I’m not sure.read more

On the phone—Work in Progress

on the phone

“On the telephone” oil on panel, 8×8 inches, WORK IN PROGRESS

I’m trying something a little different with this painting. As you can see, it’s kind of rough and the drawing accuracy needs to be nailed down. (Some parts of her face are crooked. I always do this, always!)read more

“Big Ed” oil sketch 5×7 inches

This is “Big Ed.” I don’t know if Big Ed is done yet. He’s painted in oil, on 5×7″ oil-primed linen panel (Centurion brand, found at Jerry’s Artarama).

Big Ed

“Big Ed,” Work in Progress (almost done) 5×7 inches on oil-primed linen panel.

I’ve been dabbling with this oil sketch for several months now. I started it, then put it away, and now I hope I’m almost finished with it.read more

Nostalgia (a painting by a 19-year-old me!)

I found some old paintings buried in the garage, and found a few to be interesting enough to bring inside. Some of these paintings bring back such good memories, of simpler times and of loved ones that are now no longer with us.

This painting, done when I was 19, was a gift for my father’s birthday. For reference, I used a photo taken by one of my sisters of our six-toed cat. My dad loved that cat.

Getting this painting digitized was a challenge because it was too big for my standard flatbed scanner (which scans up to 8-1/2 x 11 inches). I scanned the painting in parts and then pieced them together in Photoshop. I think that worked fairly well, so that’s great news!

Six-toed cat, oil on stretched canvas, 11×14 inches.