Friday, April 30, 2010

Cracks Are Beginning To Show...365 Days of Drawing

AS I prepare for my trip early tomorrow for Wyoming and teaching/painting today, the cracks are beginning to show in my drawing, especially this old blue china plate.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Class demo...365 Days of Drawing

This was my class demo at The California Art Institute yesterday of English rose Vickie -and the drawing block-in counting for today's drawing challenge.

Tried a slightly different approach to demonstrate glazing over grisaille underpainting - hard to do in a quick head study.

She is wearing a "fascinator" head piece...her neck really was that thin. Very Sargent.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Gobblin" Goblets...365 Days of Drawing...

Silver goblets with gold's drawing. In haste, a class to teach...

Paper size, 18 x 24"

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Class continues at CAI

My teaching class at The California Art Institute continues tomorrow. Be there! This is Keri, our model from last week.

And also my pal... I finished this study today, 10 x 12.

Cup o' tea..365 Days of Drawing

Things are always better over a cup of tea. Today's drawing, Cup o' tea, from my 365 Day Drawing Challenge 2010. 18" x 24"

oil, charcoal, watercolor and gouache

Monday, April 26, 2010

Five day old bread...365 Days of Drawing

I am focusing on this coming Saturday which will mark MONTH NUMBER FIVE of my daily drawing challenge. I need the focus as the challenge is feeling stale right now like five-day-old bread. Here are more boats I sketched from the dock yesterday. Not the best sketch, the day was dull and overcast, but..I met the challenge. How are you doing with your New Year's Resolutions?

Saturday, April 24, 2010

All aboard...365 Days of Drawing

Posting early for tomorrow's drawing. It had to be done. A drawing from my 'garden'. John Singer Sargent's legacy is not threatened. He painted the best watercolor water of anyone ever. Humbling stuff. Glad I did it. Very challenging little quick sketch of dock posts.

Sweet and simple...365 Days of Drawing

A simple drawing block-in demo of donuts and eggs done for a class of teeanagers I was teaching last night at The Vita Art Gallery in Ventura. A very talented enthusiastic group of young artists it was my privilege to teach. This is my drawing for the day. I drew a lot last night.

Friday, April 23, 2010

More Comps...365 Days of Drawing

Another compositional sketch for yesterday's drawing challenge working things out for a posthumous portrait that will probably be life-size. Background, light flow, pose, etc. etc.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

New York Unveilings...

The verdict (and picture) is finally unveiling last week of Mr. Christopher Forbes (of Forbes Magazine) by the Duke of Buccleuch and Queensberry in conjunction with The National Trust of Scotland's gala, A Celebration of National Treasures, honoring Mr. Forbes.

The portrait, 34" x 40", was unveiled in front of around 3oo at the ritzy Metropolitan Club, a night to remember beautifully organized by The Trust complete with Highland jinks and jigs of whiskey.

My second unveiling of the week was at The Players' Club of New York for its "Hall of Fame Collection" organized by club Art Committee Chair, Mr. Everett Raymond Kinstler, N.A., pictured here giving the address at the evenings festivities including dinner and entertainment by some terrific theatre performers. Mr. Kinstler is the country's foremost portrait painter 'extraordinaire' with portraits of seven US presidents under his art belt. I am blessed to have studied with this great man for the last seven years. His art, friendship and art direction changed my life.

The Players was founded in 1888 by famed actor Edwin Booth as a gathering place for theatre and film greats. It became legendary. The portrait collection honors past and present members of The Players.

My newest portrait for the club's collection, which includes paintings by John Singer Sargent no less, was of actor-playwright Howard Lindsay (and president of The Players for many years). It is my fourth portrait for The Players, something I hold dear. There were 16 esteemed artists also unveiling into the collection that night including Michael Shane Neal, Dawn Whitelaw, Holly Metzger, Jason Bouldin, Wende Carporeale, and Loryn Brazier,

Drawing through the pain...365 Days of Drawing

A migraine stopped play on this sketch last night at the end of 30 minutes. It is a compositional sketch for a posthumous portrait commission I am starting to work on. Every painting is a series of corrections but those compositional sketches sure help.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

No Butts...365 Days of Drawing.

I returned with yesterday's drawing to the large format I started the year with. I had a lovely comment from someone who contacted me yesterday saying how 'sensual" the early part of the drawing year was.

I looked back over all the drawings. It is fascinating to see the dips and bends. The highs and lows. Every image reminds me of what I was doing and feeling that day, like reading a journal. The large format, this one, 18 x 24", definitely has an impact that the smaller pieces lack. But of course they take more time and energy.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Cheers! 365 Days of Drawing

The last day I found myself sketching at the airport. Actually in the airport bar. A great place to sketch. People are animated thanks to the brew and don't usually work out that you are drawing them.

Also, drawing makes a $10.00 beer last forever...I have never paid that much for a beer anywhere!!!!

Sculpture quickie...365 Days of Drawing

Time was short this day with another portrait unveiling in the evening at The Players' Club. I raced to Columbus Circle to sketch for 30 minutes. I picked a complicated subject and tried to break it down into an abstract form of light and shadow that I could nail simply remembering the spectacular drawings of Poussin.

It was very windy. I was cold. My hair was quickly becoming a frizz ball. Not good for the swish evening ahead. I quit the drawing in favor of my hair when the drawing time was up. Shoot me.

I have walked passed this sculpture a million times while living in New York. This is the FIRST time I really looked at it. Shame on me.

Regroup for a Saint...365 Days of Drawing

I re-grouped for my drawing this day, planning for it, doing something I have ALWAYS wanted to do. Draw from the sculptures at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

I spent time on this drawing. Saint Tarcisius. A young boy slain by rocks. Or something like that. People came over to watch and two people took pictures of my drawing. YIKES. I even had a chance encounter with an amazing portrait artist I knew, (Kyle you know who you are) who was suddenly looking over my shoulder. What are the chances of that in The Met? Ha!

This was the best drawing of the trip and I really felt the benefit of drawing every day this year. And what a joy to draw in The Met.

Do I have to?...365 Days of Drawing Challenge

The next two days were lack-lustre in the drawing department, so many distractions, but I got it done, telling myself through gritted teeth I only had to LOOK at that sketch book for 30 minutes. Stuff came out, slowly and painfully. People move really fast in Starbucks. Wonder why?

Bag Lady...365 Days of Drawing

There was much on my mind this day other than drawing challenges. Checking easel/stage lights for my night's portrait unveiling in front of 300 honoring Mr. Kip Forbes (Forbes Magazine) at The Metropolitan Club, phone calls to event organizers, etc. etc. This lovely bag lady dressed in bright orange leggings and blue hat got me through the challenge over a cup of coffee in a cafe, looking out onto busy manic 57th street where she was sitting on a plastic crate in her own little world. She hadn't a care in the world. She knew her leggings were killer.

Fire Escape...New York Sketches

I couldn't escape the drawing challenge in New York even with a fire escape outside my window.

This is arrival night. I was super-tired after the 3 a.m. start in Los Angeles. I sat down on the couch in my small but lovely room and drew the nearest thing. The window and fire escape for a quick 30 minutes before dinner date.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Packing it in...365 Days of Drawing...

Who wants to draw in the evening when one has to pack and be up at 3 a.m. to travel? All I can say is, a drawing challenge wouldn't be a challenge without these kind of errr....challenging not so warm and fuzzy moments.

So, my thirty minutes tonight were spent on pure and simple "quick gesture drawing" knowing I will need it for the next week out and about with my sketch book. Capturing that quick rapid two second moment, maybe at the airport at 5am, for sure in a coffee shop or two.

A hearty thanks to Glenn Vilppu, my drawing idol, a man who has influenced my art profoundly. Master of quick sketch and then some. If you don't know who he is, you probably should if you care about drawing.


I bow to him and have done for years...

Reminder...I will be drawing the next six days in NY but I will not be posting here or on FACEBOOK.

Shuffling Along...365 Days of Drawing...

There's a guy like this in every old town. He has walked the same street on his daily routine for years, the world on his shoulders. The cap is perfectly moulded to his head, the coat crumpled to perfection from years of use with bits of dried baguette I suspect in his pockets.

I spotted this particular gent as I was sitting in a sidewalk cafe after finally finding an art store near Dinan, France. There was a spectacular green windowed building near to him. I decided last night to combine the images for my daily drawing.

Off to NY early tomorrow for two portrait unveilings. I WILL be drawing every day but not posting until next Tuesday when I will do a compilation from the week's travels.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Dingy Boats a Dusk...365 Days of Drawing

It was one of those lazy hazy Sunday afternoons in Dinan, France. A new friend took me out for the afternoon in her little old car. What a treat after so much time walking on my own. We saw relics, we saw idyllic spots, We ate ice-creams. We laughed at her bad driving.

Then on the drive back to my studio, as dusk was settling in, I spotted these little boats abandoned, with the last rays of the day falling on them. A magnificent show of light.

I revisited these those boats in yesterday's drawing and wish I could have the exact same Sunday afternoon today.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Perfectly Imperfect...365 Days of Drawing

Some moments take your breath away. I really did see a rainbow over the 6th Century Mont-St-Michel tiny island and it's Benedictine Abbey on a rainy day in France. What are the chances of that?

I decided to try and capture that moment in a quick-sketch drawing last night. The rainbow, the tourists treading a well- worn path to the mount. I was glad I did. The feelings of the day flooded back. The sense of incredible history that I was standing before. The sheer sense of being overwhelmed. How would I even attempt to paint this? And one of the BEST lunches I had in France at a tourist grim grotto. Go figure.

The drawing is far from perfect lacking in a good value pattern but it also reminds me that things can be special done with heart and the right feeling. Perfectly imperfect so to speak. It is not all about perfect technique.

Actual Image 4 x 6"

Charcoal and wash.

Friday, April 9, 2010

The Rose...365 Days of Drawing

I started this still life as a little demo in my teaching class. The drawing block-in counts toward today's challenge. The block-in wasn't my best.

Roses take two sittings for me. This one will need to have a few more petals picked up after the roses have dried.

9" x 12"

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Losing My Marbles...365 Days of Drawing...

It is 7 a.m. and here I am posting marbles. A busy day ahead. A painting to ship out early. A morning class to teach and an afternoon painting in the studio. It could be said I am losing my marbles?

Today's drawing, oil on paper, charcoal, and wash. 4" x 6'. I am doing them a LOT smaller than I was.

What makes you lose yours?

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Mugshots...365 Days of Drawing...

I decided to dip my art toes into the murky waters of art merchandising. I have seen other artists self-publish books, mugs, note cards, aprons, hats and such.

Well, I am left feeling like a bit of a mug. My little foray produced the most expensive coffee receptacle that the art world has EVER seen and certainly far too expensive for most to buy. Even if it is ever so french pink and completely ADORABLE.

I am also reminded of the words of the very astute marketing guru Seth Godin, that one should only bank on one's new book making money, if the one they just published before was a hit.

So less art merchandising for me and back to doing what I do: last night's portrait painting demo to a full-house for The Westlake Village Art Guild in CA over dinner. About 85 people graciously hosted me and not a single pink mug was put up for sale.

Thanks to WAG and to my lovely pal/sitter Keri in her french-chic chick attire. She is a delight.

This counts as today's drawing for the challenge. Demo was raffled, the winners pictured here with me.

Ever so adorable pink mugs, featuring my painting "The Veil", available if you just can't resist...

Email me...

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Choked up...365 Days of Drawing

I am not worried about getting my drawing in today as I do a portrait demo tonight for a dinner meeting for The Westlake Village Art Guild in CA. I am told to expect about 85 artists watching me do my 'thing'.

Doing my thing publicly requires drawing practice ahead of time! This is my sketch from last night, the lovely Keri, who will be my model tonight. I forgot my rule not to draw the face of the sitter the night before a public demo. Broke it. And remembered why. Not good to choke up on a drawing the night before. Usually best for me to draw the face two days before and do something completely different the night before.

But I feel good to go. Keri and I met yesterday to discuss clothing. And guess what? A beautiful turn of the century choker I purchased in France, arrived via mail yesterday just in time for Keri to wear. All velvet and diamante sparkles. I am all choked up.

Monday, April 5, 2010

High Days And Holidays...365 Days of Drawing

High days and holidays. 365 days of drawing no matter what. My drawing for Easter Sunday reflects the highest of days.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Bunny Love...365 Days of Drawing

There had to be a bunny in today's drawing so here the great Easter Rabbit gets pulled out of a hat...

Pen and ink with watercolor wash...

Pen and ink seems to be the hardest drawing media of them all...not much room for error. But I have always loved the effect.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

A Line About Line...365 Days of Drawing

I am feeling the need to lay down the' line' for a bit rather than do the more 'mass' painterly drawing approach you have see me do mostly so far. I think people who draw really well have a good command of both the line of things and the mass of things. I want to challenge myself on this challenge...and LEARN.

Not a day without line...The Art Students League of New York mantra.

What about chocolate? Good news. It Easter! A chocolate frenzy...Happy Easter folks.

Bic pen, pencil, white chalk and wash.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Tattoo Me?...365 Day of Drawing..

I set up a still life yesterday of skull, ink quill, pot and rose, especially for the three tattoo artists in my class. The are great and an inspiration to ME. We have a mutual repsect for each others' art skills.
Of course, now I want a tattoo.

I did a quick sketch in class of the set up and finished it later in the day moving the position of the skull more to the side.

6"x 8"

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Eastern Promise...365 Days of Drawing

I love sparkly things...I think that is pretty obvious by now! Here is my drawing for the day. Classs demo yesterday in my teaching class. A beautiful model whose likeness seemed hard to capture for everyone. Those gold coins presented many with a challenge too. I like what I got. Easy to get carried away with beauty and sparkle!

"Eastern Promise"
10" x 12"