Friday, November 26, 2021

Going Bigger

After a number of smaller pieces, I decided to work on a larger painting. Its size is fitting for the subject. 

October seemed to be my month of moose. With good sightings of bull moose in rut at Turnbull Wildlife Refuge (about an hour from my house) and four visits from a cow and her calf to my property, moose have been on my mind.

The painting size (24" X 48") may be modest for some artists but it fits in to the large category for me.

I've drawn the moose from an angle which looks up at them, giving them a large and noble presence. 

The horizon line is kept low furthering the illusion of the size of the moose. For the wash I used yellow ochre rather than my usual raw sienna. With the purples in the painting, the more yellow (less orange) wash will work better for the piece.

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Happy Thanksgiving!

Linda's photo of a turkey in her yard

 I hope you have many people and joys for which to be thankful.


Friday, November 12, 2021

The Paintings Revealed

 On October 16, I showed you two of my paintings which had been disguised. 

Did you guess what they were?

Snow-ing at Blackwater     Original oil    15" X 21"
 Note: Blackwater refers to the Blackwater Wildlife Refuge in Dorchester County, Maryland 


Taking Wing   Original Oil  10" X 16"

Come join the fun at the 50th anniversary of the Waterfowl Festival!

I'd love to chat with you.  Find me in the Armory location.

Saturday, November 6, 2021

Larger than Life

 Rarely do wildlife artists paint their creatures larger than life. It wouldn't be very easy for me to paint a giraffe larger than life size even though I have a cathedral ceiling in my studio. I'd be on a ladder for the head and on my knees for the hooves.

I debated on these two pieces whether to paint them larger than life size. In the end I opted to paint them slightly less than two times their actual size. These are hummingbirds I see at my house from April to September.

Summer Jewels - Male Calliope     8" X 12"     Original Oil

The flower is one which grows naturally on our property and hummingbirds seem to love its nectar. To achieve the iridescent feathers on the calliope's throat, I painted the highlighted area titanium white. Once dry, I glazed it (using Liquin) with very thin layers of Michael Harding Crimson Lake, Richeson Quinacridone Red, and Daniel Smith Pearlescent Shimmer. I made sure the mixture did not touch the deeper shadow reds. The effect worked and is evident even after varnishing.


 Summer Jewels - Female Calliope    8" X 12"   Original Oil 

The challenge on this piece was to create the brilliance of the blossoms. I'm not sure how many combinations I tried until finally happy with this result. 


So why larger than life? We often see hummingbirds so fleetingly, never getting a chance to see the detail on their feathers and even less so the movements of their wings with the naked eye.  

Now, don't hold your breath for a larger than life giraffe!