Thursday, January 31, 2019

Still loosening up

Here's another one trying to keep it fast and loose, with the ol' studio acrylics.  Giving myself permission to err on the side of sloppy.

Shade - Acrylic on 5x7 archival paper

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Loosening up

I've been feeling kind of stuck with my recent paintings and like I need to loosen up a bit, so to shake things up I pulled out some old studio acrylic paints, which are more opaque than I usually use and behave just differently enough that I can more easily go into a different mode and do some quick, loose studies. (If I would have been thinking, I'd have done this on carton paper to donate to Art4shelter, will have to dig some out for the future 5x7's!)

Fish study - Acrylic on 5x7 in. gessobord

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Profile Pic

This little cutie has such a professional pose.  I accidentally made the dog look older than it is, I need to work on lighter shading without it looking like aging white fur. Luckily this is just a practice piece so I'll just pretend it was an older dog and be done with it and try a different approach next time. :)

Profile Pic - Acrylic on 6x6 in. gessobord

Sunday, January 27, 2019

On the River

I believe this is a scene from Wyoming. I have a pile of landscapes I want to try painting, this was one of them. There was a big dead tree in the original reference photo, it was so satisfying taking it out of my painting! Artistic license, whoo-hoo!

On the River - Acrylic on 5x7 in. gessobord

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Bird on a Wall

I really liked the green-looking water in this reference photo, and I'm happy with how it turned out in the painting. I think that's my favorite part.

Bird on a Wall - Acrylic on 6x8 inch gessobord

Thursday, January 17, 2019


I struggled with this one, with all the variegated fur! I'm happy that I've still been finishing more paintings though, and not abandoning so many half-way through.

Friend - Acrylic on 6x8 inch gessobord

Sunday, January 13, 2019


I really like how the fish came out in this one, but in retrospect I don't think pink was the best color to use as an under painting. It's too similar to the rocks. I guess it does give them a neon glow that fish rocks often seem to have.

Buddies - Acrylic on 6x8 inch archival card stock

Friday, January 11, 2019

Ready for my close-up

This character was in a reference photo from Paint My

Ready for my close-up, Acrylic on 5x7 in. gessobord

Thursday, January 10, 2019


I saw a quote somewhere that was something like "Progress is slow. Quitting won't get you there sooner", and it stuck with me in terms of not quitting half-way through paintings when they may have an ugly phase. I've finished a few paintings now, including this one, that I definitely would have quit on before.

Focus - Acrylic on 6x6 in. hardboard panel

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Edge of Glory

It was amazing how not black this black crow was! Lots of purples and blues.

Edge of Glory - Acrylic on 6x8 inch gessobord

Monday, January 7, 2019

Callie 10

I don't know if this is really the 10th Callie painting, but that seems about right?? This one was painted on magenta background instead of my usual black background - it really makes for a different look. I know I was complaining about black gesso absorbing so much "color" in my last post, but when painting on panel primed with acrylic paint I miss the "tooth" of the gesso, it feels slippery smooth.

Callie - Acrylic on 6x6 inch gessobord

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Front and Center

Lately I've been especially noticing how the black gesso I paint on really seems to suck up the color, and require a few coats sometimes to maintain "vibrancy" in my paintings. I know there's chalk in gesso, maybe that's it? Maybe if I mix the black gesso with 50% black acrylic and use that for priming/toning it would suck up less? Anyone have any thoughts or experience? 

Anyway, here is a rose, painted from a reference photo. It's not the first rose I've tried but I think it's the first rose I've ever finished!

Front and Center - Acrylic on 6x6 inch gessobord

Friday, January 4, 2019

Merlot Hyndrangeas

This is a scene I found of a country home in Greece. I thought it looked like the hydrangeas had been watered with Merlot. I used a smaller brush than I usually do for most of this, just experimenting. I tend to use the same brush for entire paintings (minus really fine details such as whiskers), rather than switching back and forth as may be more appropriate. I'll have to add another sticky note reminder to my easel!

Merlot Hydrangeas - Acrylic on 8x10 gessobord

Thursday, January 3, 2019

A tiny kitty!

I found a reference photo of a little kitty I couldn't resist. I think this is the first true kitten I've painted. It was feeling choppy along the way but I kept going and I think it came together at the end. I'm planning to paint a few more kitties, this one was so fun.

Tiny Kitty - 6x6 inch Acrylic on gessobord

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Baltic Sky

I'm really into trying landscapes lately.  This one is from a reference photo taken on the way to the Baltic Sea, with an incredible sky. I may have made the darker parts of the clouds too dark, as is my tendency when painting white things...

Baltic Sky - 6x8 inch Acrylic on gessobord