Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Sophie and Samantha's Spherical Play

Sophie and Samantha's Spherical Play
acrylic and charcoal on paper 16 x 20 inch

This painting has been in the works for a while.  Today as I worked on it in my art class, I decided to call it done.  Halting screech...DONE.  I feel very ready to work on something else.

I should tell you about the funny story that inspired it...of the two girls playing in their yard...one jumping up and down on the roof of a car with sounds of the metal giving beneath her feet with each jump...and her sweet little voice yelling across the street at me and my dog as we walked by "HI!"...and her presumably older sister shushing her and telling her not to talk to strangers...Mom said not to talk to strangers.

 I saw these same two girls weeks later playing with balls...both girls in dresses with up-do hair.  And it was at that point I decided to paint them.

Adorable impressions left in my mind.  

The Arkansas River on a very quiet day

Leaving you with this image.  We just need a pair of doves sitting on the lower wire, don't you agree?

Wishing you all peace today.

Monday, September 28, 2015

What Angie Redhead Inspired: Taking Jeanne Oliver's Online Classes

work in progress
acrylic on paper 16 x 20 inch

I recently took an online painting class called Classical Figure Painting by Angie Redhead on Jeanne Oliver's website.  I have not taken an online class for three years, but after my friend Lynne Hoppe mentioned the website to me, I was in the mood to learn something new and just expand my world a little bit.  

In the class Angie taught the grisaille method of underpainting where multiple shades of one color are used (usually grey).  I won't go into details on how to finish, since that is what taking her class is all about, but I can tell you that I learned some new things and was reminded about some methods I had learned before.  

I can also tell you that I am NOT a classical figure painter as you can see from my girls here.  
I have a story about these girls once the painting is complete...whenever that is.  Life is always busy, isn't it?

Here's the underpainting in its creepy stage.

underpainting in progress

Have a great week!


For those interested in the classes...

Jeanne Oliver's class website is a "ning" website, which is an online community you join for free in order to take offered classes.  It reminds me of Facebook, where you have a profile that you can build up (or not), and connect to other members with comments and private messages (or not).  The classes are a series of videos produced by various artists that you can watch at your own pace or within the time frame given where the instructor is available for feedback and questions.  There are many free tutorials as well, and the class schedule is impressive ranging in everything from decorating, to drawing, to painting, to mixed media to digital art.  There are always early bird specials, but even if you miss the specials the classes are affordable and you also get lifetime access to the class videos (meaning as long as Jeanne's website exists).  

If you take any classes there are places besides the ning website where you can connect with the teacher and other people in the class if you wish, such as Facebook and Instagram .  This offers a great opportunity to see what others are doing and also get feedback from the instructor and other students and meet new people.  I did not join in on the social media because I started my class the week after it was "over", plus I am struggling already to keep up with the artists I already know online.  So for me, it works to just take the classes on my own.   

I know that probably most of the people that follow my blog already know about Jeanne's site, but in case you don't, there you go! I remember wondering about sites like these when I first began to blog and it took forever to figure it out.  I hope I've saved someone from all the mystery. 

 Mixed media artists will especially love the classes and it is always good to learn new things.  For us artists, it inspires and enhances what we are already doing.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Inspiration of Sia's Song

Inspiration of Sia's Song
mixed media on canvas 12 x 12"

Some time last year my son sent me a link to a video he said I would probably like.  It was the music video to Sia's hit song called Chandelier, and I had never heard of neither singer nor song, being the "not-so-with-it" middle aged woman that I am.  For those younger ones reading, this will be old news to you.

Anyway, the video stars a young dancer by the name of Maddie Ziegler and in it she sports a platinum blonde wig which we assume represents Sia as herself.  It is filmed in a barren home of some sort and the young girl dances and flips about in a bizarre fashion all over the place.  What struck me most about the video was the fact that she was only 11 years old and could dance like she was 20.  I was emotionally moved watching her, and all of America must have felt the same because she was invited to perform her dance on The Ellen Show along with Sia.

Fast forward months later, I began thinking about the video once again and this painting was born.   And thanks to my son, I am a fan of Sia now too.  

Here's the video if you are interested.  It's worth watching if you appreciate dance and also popular music. 

Saturday, August 29, 2015

A Walk by Poetry Porch

A Walk by Poetry Porch
oil on board 18 x 24"

On a beautiful day some time ago I was walking near the park and there was a couple sitting on their huge front porch.  The man was reading the newspaper out loud to the woman who sat attentively listening.  The romantic in me changed the newspaper to a book of poetry and this painting was born in my mind.  A self-portrait I guess, but not really because:  1.  I don't wear long dresses when I walk, and 2.  My dog looks nothing like the dog in the painting.

I changed the couple to a group of women because as you know I am more a painter of the female figure vs the male for no other reason than they are easier for me.  I am a woman, I was raised by a woman, I grew up surrounded by women, so my recurring subject of women makes sense.

I hope you all are well and have a wonderful weekend!

♥ Lisa

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

A Background Story About Jade

acrylic on wood panel

When I painted Jade back in 2013, I used an image of Whistler's Arrangement in Grey: Portrait of the Painter as my guide for color.  However, as you can see  when comparing the image below I didn't stick to the plan as my painting is far more green.  The image of the girl is a loose rendering from a photo of my aunt at the age of 14.  I was not trying to capture my aunt, I just wanted her pose and Whistler's colors, but in the end it did seem to capture her somewhat.

Arrangement in Grey:  Portrait of the Painter
James McNeill Whistler
scanned image from Whistler by Frances Spalding

 I almost sold my painting, but after having it around for a while decided it was best to keep it.  There was just something too special about it for me.  It now hangs in the entryway of our house along with a vintage find and an old photo of my grandparents and other Missouri mining workers and wives in 1930.  My aunt was the one who gave me that photo years ago and I had it professionally framed for my mother who kept it until she passed away last July.  Our new-to-us old house was also built in 1930 which adds to the meaning of this old picture.

The images that greet you at our house

photo detail

My grandparents are the couple on the left, and the couple on the right are my great aunt and uncle I am told, though I never met them.  

The inspiration for Jade
AKA Mary Imogene

Wasn't she a pretty girl?

Friday, July 31, 2015

Around Here Lately

Around here lately I've been painting on 20 x 20 inch canvases...this is just the start.

Reading a Pulitzer Prize winner -  this one is on the bestseller list at Barnes and Noble right now.

Tried my hand at making mushroom bruschetta. 

Sketching and jotting down ideas for paintings.

Beating the heat by spending the cooler mornings on the patio with coffee and book in hand.

Taking long walks along the river.

Making regular time for the studio...even on dark and drippy days.

What have you been doing this week?

♥ Lisa

Friday, July 24, 2015

Sleepy Scenes and Their Inspiration

acrylic and ink on paper 9 x 12 inch
available here

Last year I painted these imaginary bedroom scenes in my sketchbook and this week they came to fruition.  When I sketch rooms like this, I sometimes draw inspiration from catalogs like Pottery Barn or some other place like that.  If my memory serves me, the above scene was inspired that way, but the painting below was 100% made up.  You may be able to see the difference in the drawing that is there, I know I can. 

 Lately I've been very inspired by a huge stack of interior design coffee table books that I bought at a local used bookstore sale.  The sale was $5 for a sack full of books, however it was a plastic grocery bag and I chose big hardback books.  You should have seen my bag!  It almost didn't make it out the door!   It was tearing as I walked it to the register and I felt like a kid trying to get away with cheating, but they said it was still fair to stuff it full the way I did and out of the store I marched with my bargain books and a happy grin on my face.  I think I made it home with about 10 beautiful coffee table books.  Happy me!

In a Red Bedroom
acrylic and ink on paper 9 x 12 inch
available here

After spending quite a bit of time looking at my new books, I was really in the mood to revisit my sketches to see what I could do with them.  In both of these I started with a very bright yellow and orange underpainting.  I was tempted to go over these with some oil paint and maybe cold wax, but they both came to a point where they looked finished, so I stopped while I was in a good place.  

Have a good weekend everyone!  Thank you for visiting.