Sunday, June 26, 2016


12x16" acrylic on canvas

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This month's virtual paintout is the Napa Valley. There are all kinds of wineries, of course, but somehow those landscapes weren't appealing to me. There's something about the regularity of the vines that I don't like.

Found this little spot near the edge of the region, outside Knoxville. I played God quite a bit—moved trees around, put in buildings and a road that weren't actually there.

Another adventure in acrylics. I think it came out okay.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Great Ocean Walk

6" x 6", acrylic on 3/4" MDF

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This month's Virtual Paintout - New South Wales, Australia.

This is my first foray into an all-acrylic painting. I frequently do the underpainting in acrylic, mostly because I'm too impatient to wait for it to dry.

I'm really happy with the colors—there's a brightness and freshness I haven't been able to get with oils. Operator error, nothing wrong with the paint! :-D

Will definitely be trying acrylics again.

I only have five acrylic paints: titanium white, yellow, a red that's close to alizarin crimson, phthalo blue, and ultramarine blue.

The original sketch.

Establishing the shadows.

All the colors blocked in.

Detail in the shadows

Detail in the sunlight

More detail, especially in the water

The finished piece

Sunday, January 24, 2016

White Stones

14" x 18", oil on canvas

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Another Virtual Paintout entry. As much as I liked the shadows across the road, it was the white stones that really caught my eye.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Tortoise Crossing

Oil, 6x6 inches, on 3/4 thick black-gessoed board

This month's Virtual Paintout is Ecuador. This scene was on one of the islands of the Galapagos. Yes, there really are tortoises walking around on the mountain tops!

The board is thick enough to stand up by itself. It's also pre-drilled with a hole in the back to hang on a nail.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Zion National Park

oil on panel, 6" x 12" (approximate)

This is one of those paintings that I wasn't sure I would finish. It just never seemed to work right, and I scraped off the canvas and started over a couple times. I'm glad I kept going...

Email: see the About section of my blog.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Larry's Tree

8" x 10" oil on canvas panel

I took an online workshop from famed plein air painter Larry Moore, and this painting is the result. I'd hoped to take an in-person workshop from him but unfortunately have a schedule conflict, so I settled for the video training. It was a good class! There's a lot of depth in his instruction; you can learn something whether you're a beginner or more advanced.

Trying some different compositions. This step is very worthwhile - always try to work out any questions before you squeeze paint out of the tubes.

And now different value plans.

The color sketch. I'm trying to establish warm and cool colors and intensity.

Underpainting. Using a big brush to stay loose.

Warm and cools of each primary, plus a few extra. Cad yellow light, naples yellow, yellow ochre, cad orange (?), magenta, alizarin crimson, phthalo blue, ultramarine blue, titanium white. Then I premixed some colors.

The dark uprights.

First pass

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