Thursday, March 28, 2019

Robert Johnson Painting Workshop At The Art Guild

Due to some crazy life circumstances, I am way behind on posting, but I'm going to go ahead and put up everything I have wanted to post over the last year.

First up, the photos from Robert Johnson's painting workshop at The Art Guild.  I posted our prep for the workshop awhile ago, so here are some pics from the weekend.

Day one started out with Robert doing a demo for the group.  Everyone learned so much that he generously offered to come in an hour early the next two days to continue working on it.  Having a generous teacher who really wants to help the students learn is so important to having a successful workshop.

As you can see, Robert started the painting by blocking in the set up, then started adding color.

After the morning demo, we started on our paintings.  If you recall from my set up post, everyone had their own still life to work on, so we spent the afternoons on those.

This is the set up that I chose.  I did not get very far as I was helping at the workshop and I'm an incredibly slow painter, but since I have access to the props, I will finish it up someday.

Robert also brought a couple of his paintings in so we could see them and study his work.  I so wish I had the $$$ to buy these!  They are really incredible.  Here are a few close up shots.

I'm very lucky to own a few of Robert's drawings, so I brought them in to show everyone even though we were not doing any drawing in class.

Here is Robert with his beautiful demo.  We had such a great weekend.  I'm hoping to do it again some time.  If you are unable to take a workshop, but would like to see more of Robert Johnson's work, he has a beautiful book of his paintings as well as some dvd's available here.

Monday, February 18, 2019

Redoing A Painting

At least once a year I vow to stop going back to old paintings, but it never lasts.  Sometimes it works out and sometimes it doesn't, but I'm happy to say my latest redo took my painting from "meh" to a piece I am really happy with.  

This is how the painting started out.  It was ok, but not great.  The set did not flow in a way that looked good to me.  Everything on the canvas seems to be on it's own instead of working together.  If you go from left to right, the apple and pear are together, then the bowl of fruit, then the vase.  You may be wondering why I did not change this up as I was working on the painting, but sometimes you don't realize that things are not working until you have the finished piece.  It's frustrating for sure, but that's how it goes.  Not everything you do will be great.  

The Art Guild was having a show called Red! and of course I was making myself nuts by setting up a very complicated still life that is going to take months to complete.  Luckily, a friend suggested doing something a bit easier and I realized that I had this canvas sitting around the studio.  I was happy with the vase so I left that alone, but everything else was repainted.  

I started out by changing the background from green to red.  Then I repainted all of the fruit.  I put another coat of red over the apples and pears, and then changed the green apples to red and added some grapes in front of the vase.  I also repainted the metal dish.  It was a little too rough for my liking, so I cleaned it up a bit.  Last, I repainted the wood shelf to make it integrate into the new painting.  

Red Vase With Fruit, 16x12, oil

This is the new painting.  I like it so much better.  I feel like everything is now flowing across the canvas in the way that it should be.

The painting was accepted into the Red show, and in a huge surprise, won first place!  

Don't be afraid to change something up if it is not working or you are unhappy with the finished product.  I'm already on to another redo!

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Plants And Flowers Inspired By Georgia O'Keeffe's Hawaii Exhibition at the New York Botanical Garden

Hello from frozen New York City.  Like most of the US we are in a deep freeze today, so it is the perfect time to look at the tropical flower exhibit that was showcased at the New York Botanical Garden in conjunction with Georgia O'Keeffe's Visions of Hawaii exhibition.

Enjoy and hope you are staying warm!

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Georgia O'Keeffe: Visions Of Hawaii At The New York Botanical Garden

Happy New Year, all!  We're going to file this post under "better late than never".  Last summer, a friend and I road tripped up to the Bronx to see Georgia O'Keeffe's Visions Of Hawaii exhibition at the New York Botanical Garden.  Georgia was hired by the Hawaiian Pineapple Company to spend nine weeks in Hawaii creating paintings of the local flora and fauna to be used as ads by the company.  (Seriously, how can I get a gig like this??)  The results were amazing.  The paintings are so colorful and beautiful.  Looking at them is like being transported to Hawaii.

The grounds of NYBG are beautiful.  A true oasis in the middle of New York City.

After a beautiful walk through the grounds, we got to the exhibition.

And now, the paintings!

Bella Donna with Pink Torch Ginger Bud, 1939

Cup of Silver Ginger, 1939

White Lotus, 1939

Hibiscus with Plumeria, 1939

Untitled (Hibiscus), 1939

Pink Ornamental Banana, 1939

Heliconia, 1939

White Bird of Paradise, 1939

Heliconia, Crab's Claw Ginger, 1939

Pineapple Bud, 1939

Waterfall No.1, lao Valley, Maui, 1939

Waterfall No. 2, lao Valley, Maui, 1939

Waterfall No. 3, lao Valley, Maui, 1939

Waterfall, End of Road, lao Valley, Maui, 1939

I love so many of these, but my personal favorites are the Pink Ornamental Banana and the Waterfall, End of Road.  Some of these paintings were done back in New York City, but many of them were done while in Hawaii.  As someone who is an incredibly slow painter, I'm always amazed when an artist can accomplish so much in a limited period of time.

After the exhibition was over, there was a room set up with maps and other cool memorabilia relating to the trip and the paintings.

I always wonder about things like the telegram.  I wonder if Georgia could have ever imagined that it would one day be part of an art exhibition.

As you can see, this exhibit was huge and it's not done yet.  In addition to the art, the NYBG had a collection of plants and flowers that inspired Georgia O'Keeffe on her trip.  I'll have those for you in my next post.

I hope you enjoyed this look into one of the most interesting shows I've seen in quite some time.