Monday, June 28, 2010

New house portrait commission

I just finished this a few days ago.  I'll spare you the self-critism and just say I'm happy with it.


Why is it that if I nod off two or three times during a meeting, I lose track of time and find it nearly impossible to tell whether I've been in the meeting for twenty minutes or an hour; yet if I wake up in the middle of the night, I can usually guess what time it is and be off by less than fifteen minutes?


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Car painting 100% finished

 I just realized I never put up a photo here of the car at 100% completion.  This picture came out a little too pale and blue, but it's close. I wonder if you can spot the differences between this and how it looked at 99.9% finished?

Category change: flower to weed

Last night I had to declare war on these cute little flowers in my garden.  I don't know where they came from; they might have been part of some "remainder" garden center plants that someone gave me a few years ago, but I don't think so.  They only grow to about 12 inches, and end with nickel-sized, lavender-tinted white flowers with yellow centers. They are pretty and sort of subtle.


However, the stems also bear needle-like thorns. I tolerated this when it was only growing in one small patch of the garden, because I didn't really have to do anything with it.  Now, though, there are seedlings popping up in the yard nearby, and the seedlings have thorns, too.  They would be quite painful to step on barefoot.


With grim resolve, I put on leather gloves, grabbed a spray bottle of Roundup, and attacked the plants.  I pulled up the ones I could find in the yard (there were fifteen or twenty), and sprayed carefully around the sweet corn, asters, bee balm, and mint to destroy what I could find in the garden.  Something tells me the fight's not over yet, though.


Monday, June 14, 2010

Well, it's been a week, so I guess I better post something before my commercial sponsors desert me.




   I am working on two pen & ink drawings.  One is a walnut ink commissioned drawing of a house, and the other is a black-and-white drawing of Farmington.  With the Farmington drawing, I'm working out the best way to capture the bricks.  Bricks always seem tricky.  Drawing each brick seems wayyyy to detailed, but how else do you make brick look like brick?  There are ways…  However, in this case, the question is needless.  I'm working rather large, and I want it to be very detailed, so yeah, I'm drawing each brick.  We'll see how that goes.




  The corn is more than two feet tall and growing fast.  I also planted a little more in the spaces between the peas and the spinach and the onions, figuring that those vegetables were about to expire, and the corn will   grown in and take over the spots.  The corn has sprouted, the peas are bolting and wilting, and the spinach is about worn out, so the plan seems to be working so far.


  Helga gave us some bee balm, and I love it.  It is large and bright, and it's the prettiest thing in our garden right now.  I also ate some of the flowers, and they're interesting.  They taste a lot like oregano with a   little bit of a spicy kick to them.




 Missing them.


Metal detecing:


  Missing it.




I   just finished a "Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser" novella called "The Snow Women."  This was the first time I've ever read anything by Fritz Lieber, at least that I can recall.  It was a decent story, and I might read some more of the stories sometime.


  A few nights ago we were at a book store, and I commented to Kim that there are so many books that I'd like to read that picking up one and reading it seems like a terrible waste.  How can I choose what to read next? Why bother?  It's like being hungry and only getting a French fry.




  Haven't seen anything.


Sunday, June 06, 2010

Triptych painting - are its days numbered?

Here is one of the "corner paintings" that I don't know what to do with. It's on canvas, so I could take it apart and re-use the stretcher bars. However, I'm in no hurry, because I almost like this one.
I painted this in 2002 (I think); it's the view from the Falls of the Ohio State Park Interpretive Center's observation deck, looking towards the Falls, on a rainy, misty day when the river was high. It is, to date, one of the largest single painting projects I've ever undertaken. In fact, it might be the biggest.
It never really developed in a way in which I was really satisfied, but I like many of the elements. I like the colors, I like the idea, I like how the bridge looks. I was very conscious from the start that it was a very minimal composition, flat and very straight-forward. The simplicity was on thing that I found interesting and challenging about it: how could it be turned into an interesting painting?
Unfortunately, I don't think I pushed it quite far enough. It needs more engaging textures and a more carefully planned use of color to really succeed, I think. That's one of those things that I think I'm better at now than I was a few years ago.
I like the scale, and I like the subject, although I'm still not convinced that the composition could ever have completely worked, even if the above problems had been taken care of.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

painting demolition

Kim and I have decided to clean out the corner of our living room that includes my not-quite-good-enough paintings. The old paintings in the corner must go.  I'll be looking for ways to break them down for scrap or otherwise salvage parts for other uses.


I know there are people who get a little worked up about me destroying the sub-par paintings, so I won't hurry through the process.  I'll photograph them, and anyone who is interested can make me an offer.


These are all works that I couldn't previously bring myself to get rid of, but didn't really have a place on any wall in my house, and weren't presentable as far as something to give or sell to others.  Some are works from college, and really aren't too bad; some are things that never really developed the way I wanted; and some are merely unfinished, and may still be completed by me in the near future.


I'll put pictures of them on my blog soon.



I've had to take an online bloodborne pathogen course for work. This is a page from it that caught my attention.  I'm not so sure about that last sentence: Really, no one has ever gotten a disease from performing CPR?  That just strikes me as unlikely.  I can understand no confirmed cases of HIV or hepatitis B transmission, but c'mon.


Also, that is one funky cool illustration.  The sexy protruding yellow lips, the single breast, the funnel-shaped right arm, the hands of two different sizes...that's a woman I want to know.  I actually do like the drawing.  It's pretty wiggy, yet still perfectly and immediately conveys the artist's intent.