Thursday, June 11, 2009

New Work

These last weeks, while I haven't been posting here I've definitely been working. The end of this month (June) I'll be exhibiting new paintings at "The Other Art Show" in Des Moines. The show is actually part of an arts weekend in central Iowa. There is the Des Moines Arts Festival, held in the downtown area, outdoors, which supports the Art Center, among other things, and the "Salon des Refusees" aka The Other Art Show, held at the state fairgrounds, indoors. Personally, in July in Iowa I'll take indoors every time.

Here are a few of the works that will probably be shown. They represent a different direction, I think, being rather dark and almost monochromatic, but they're in line with the one I posted earlier this year, "Goodbye." Both oi these works are 12x12, oil on panel.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Rainy Day

I did this one alla prima from imagination, based on several ideas I've been kicking around. It's 20x16 on a hardboard panel. What I mainly tried to do was boil the image down into nothing but the essentials. The panel was primed with a mid-value gray and the painting was made with only raw umber and flake white except for a touch here and there of a dulled mix of pale yellow ochre/cad red. The title is "Goodbye..."

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

More Drawings

Here are a couple of other drawings I just ran across in reorganizing my files. This one is a graphite sketch of a pickup truck I owned years ago. I did this one in preparation for a painting that never materialized. It's a 1950-model Ford F-1. I loved the rounded contours and relatively narrow cab and exaggerated them for the image.

The other drawing is a quick sketch of Stewart, a man I knew years ago. He was in his late 90s at the time, having lived a very full life. He would have a good breakfast and then spend a half hour sitting in the sun, smoking his only cigar of the day. Although he looks pretty sour in the drawing, he was a lovely and courtly man and great fun to talk to. I spent several mornings with him on his front porch, sketching. He had a philosophic view of life (as who wouldn't if he lived that long) and its trials but seemed mostly amused by the whole thing.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Drawing in the Airport

I've been reorganizing my files these past few days and discovered a few old drawings. In the same way as many artists, I find that airport waiting areas are a fertile place for an artist equipped with a sketchbook. I've spent many happy hours in various airports, sketching instead of fuming. This one was done a few years back when I was delayed in St. Louis.

Sketching in airports, like painting outdoors, brings the curious onlooker and the occasional admirer. I usually give the drawing to the subject, if they're not rushing onto an airplane.

Monday, January 26, 2009


I finally finished the "vanitas" mentioned in earlier posts. The painting is 20x16 on a panel and although the cap and skull are amusing, the idea is that the items scattered about are potentially deadly--salt, sugar, fat, cigarettes--risks for heart disease.

Perhaps this is more a "memento mori" than a vanitas, reminding viewers that we're all mortal.

The sketch I posted earlier was quite a lot different, but that's the nature of doing this kind of thing. You should work out the final image long before you start the final painting.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Dead of Winter

Although the days are getting longer, the thermometer keeps falling. I've been working steadily (but not posting nearly often enough) these last months, finishing various portrait commissions and other work. In particular, I've been working on a series of pen and ink drawings, several of which are shown. These are approximately 11"x 7" on Bristol board.

The first three are from a group of inks dealing with vintage railroad subjects. The final drawing in this group is a view of the Iowa State Capitol.

Prints will be available in the spring.