52 Blocking My Sun

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Phew!  We’re back and I can still paint!  I get nervous when I take a couple days off, but the weekend in Estes was wonderfully relaxing.  My husband’s parents rented a cabin for all of us, it was just the right amount of rustic and luxury without feeling totally lazy…if that makes sense.

Anyways, here’s one to enjoy till I can crank out more tomorrow!  I have loads of new glass to paint from garage sale-ing before we left too.

Estes Park

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I tried to think of something clever as a photo to post,  but I’m too exhausted to even think hard.  Very physical week, makes me wonder if I’ll last when it comes time to update a whole house!  Anyways, just on to tell you that we’ll be up in Estes this weekend relaxing with my in-laws.  So wonderful!  And if my husband gets his wish and we go garage sale-ing tomorrow morning, I probably won’t post all weekend.  Hold on tight!  The desire to paint is there, just not the energy.  Hmph.  See you Monday>  that’s also when I’m scheduled to start painting the Transformer Cabinet.  I’ll try to keep you all aware of when I’ll be there so you can come say hi.

Just ‘Cause

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Here’s another one since I made you all wait an extra day without a post this weekend, and because I managed to finish this one today -among all the chaos- and am excited to show you!

Chameleon Glass | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 12x16in | $50

Chameleon Glass | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 12x16in | SOLD

Came up with the name all by myself ::smile::  The square bottle really is that distorted, I hope that reads well.  And I got new paper so there will be more exciting backgrounds coming.  Enjoy!

51 Green Grapes

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$20 USD

Holy moly has it been a crazy morning.  Lots of different people needing lots of different things.  Thankfully I prayed to be flexible this morning.  I tend to picture my whole day and then get upset easily if something comes up unexpectedly.  Yep.

But on a happier note, I tried painting grapes for the first time!  Carol’s grapes look nice and translucent, but hey!  -I did it, and I like them.  I prepped about 8 different shades of green, so that there would be lots of variety in the colors of brush strokes.  A good thing to note is to make sure not every grape is not painted exactly the same, I like to put a group of one color close to each other, or the white ‘shine’ different sizes and only a few of them.

I’m working on a larger still life with these grapes in them too, so I can try again.  And of course, glass!

Trying something New

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It’s a late post tonight.  We’ve been having quite the busy week and tonight was the peak of it.  My husband led the worship night at our church tonight, something we try to do as a church every other month.  But one of our pastor-friends tasked me with organizing (maybe not the best word for us B brains) artists in the church to worship in a more visual way with our skills.  A friend of ours who is a fantastic painter, Molly Freeman, does this sort of worship-painting at another church in town, so I picked her brain on how to go about putting one together myself.

Long story short, me and another gal in the college ministry set up camp in the back of the auditorium and art-ed it up while the band played.  My thoughts; in the beginning was a bit more relaxed and enjoyable because there was no pressure.  No one really noticed us yet, I knew there’d be tons more songs, I was singing.  But as the night was coming to an end I was feeling the pressure and lost the purpose of the evening;  To connect with Jesus.  Welp, for a first go-around I think it was alright.

Here’s the result.  I brought an image with me, I thought the bride was a good theme in Christianity.

The Bride | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 12x16in |$50

The Bride | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 12x16in |

 

 

49 Hiding Place Ruined

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I LOVE PAINTING GLASS!  Of all the Carol Marine set ups I’ve imitated I really enjoy painting these glass bottles.  And it took three tries but the pear looks like a pear, phew.  Here’s to persevering.

I bought new produce to paint while grocery shopping, might keep trying the glass and fruit combos.  Although, I snagged some cute little tomatoes on the vine, and was trying not to be weird about wanting to be careful with them in the store, but I got home and one already fell off!  Fooey, at least I played it cool. ::wink::

here’s a picture more or less of the still life I set up, it looks a lot darker here.  Another reason why it’s good to paint from life.

photo 2 (40)

48 Alice, Denise and Phil

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SOLD

Oh man, my sister has THE coolest pictures of her ducks I’ve been kind of going nuts with them.  Maybe more to come.  And yes, she named them Alice, Denise and Phil.  You gotta’ meet her (my sister) she’s the funniest.

My transformer project got approved!  I presented to the board last wednesday and they liked the images I made.  I told them I could start painting the box the 30th of this month, that’s next Monday.  SCARY!  Guess I better go buy supplies eh?  And I might be done with the Behemoth commission painting, as long as it passes the reviews I hope will happen before the un-veiling at their anniversary celebration.  Yikes!  I also got two more requests for paintings this week, of subjects I think I’ll enjoy even.  Yippee!  My un-official-role-model Carol Marine doesn’t do commissions anymore because they’re “no fun.”  I don’t know about no-fun, but maybe more stressful, wondering the whole time if they’ll actually like the result.  Cross your fingers for me!

47 The Interview

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Sorry no post yesterday!  We were staying over night with the 6 kids I used to live with so their parents could have a little trip for their anniversary.  That’s right, 6.  But they’re wonderful and SO much fun.  Alas, no painting.  I did do this one ahead of time on friday though because I knew I wouldn’t be in the studio all weekend.  Being away was actually really refreshing, now I’m craving it.  I got two new glass bottles at Goodwill again today, so look for them in upcoming still lifes!

A few things I like and learned from this painting.  I like how the shadow turned out, really feels like the lighting is real.  And the whole plate in general, the proportions are huge in dishes and I think this one turned out pretty right-on.  If I do say so myself.  Thought, my forks need some work.  Straight on their a piece of cake!  From any other angle it’s tricky.  I’ll have to pay more attention next time.

46 Early Morning Jingle N/A

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My friend is at a Ranch for a month this summer working with horses and she posts the most AMAZING pictures!  I loved the composition of this one, so I tried it out.  Horses are hard to get to look as graceful as they are, and maybe I should have painted the white horse smaller- I wanted to paint one horse with a little more detail.  I might have to try this one again.

Here’s the photo:

Early Morning Jingle - Photo

Thanks Ashleigh!

45 Evening in the Alley

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SOLD

Feeling refreshed this morning!  I got some much needed fellowship with some women from church last night, simply talking about being married lately.  It’s funny how when your relationship with Christ is good everything else in life smooths over.  That’s how I’m feeling today.

Anyways, took this photo tuesday night while husband and I were walking around Old Town, heading to get chocolate cake for dessert.  Yum.  I feel like with this one I was in tune with my own painting nature, it comes out every now and then, and is much more comfortable.  Still learning the balance between painting like the style I enjoy in others’ art and letting my own self shine through.  But that’s what this blog is all about.  Thanks for the compliments lately and your patience in watching me grow, helps me to be patient with myself.

On another note; I presented my plan for the Transformer Box in front of the board meeting yesterday!  There were 4 other artists there and maybe 8 people on the board to present to.  A hand out with all my paintings and the location of the box was given to everyone and all I had to do was introduce myself and answer any questions they had.  SUPER easy and actually rather fun and laid back.  They seemed pretty impressed, but I was MOST encouraged by another artist painting this summer.  When I went to sit back down and showed her my hand out with the images of my paintings she said, “wow!” And looked at them for a while with more compliments.  And she’s a pro!  Thanks for that God.

44 Black Coffee

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SOLD

Since painting the larger version of cups of coffee for the transformer cabinet I’ve had the itch to do just the black coffee again.  Not as brilliant as the first, but hey, I’d still drink it.

Perhaps I do blue and orange together too much.  Add that to my lesson list, and move on!  One of the benefits of painting small guys everyday.  This is all I have to ‘technically’ show for my day, the majority of my day was spent on painting the ginormous commission I’ve been talking about lately.  It’s a secret, otherwise I’d post it.  The tricky thing with doing them so large, I’ve decided, is that I just have to throw the basic color values on and once most of the canvas is filled, then I can go back and adjust the lighting, and over-all harmony.  I’m actually working from, like, ten different photos too, all of which have different lighting and cloudiness in them.  Extra bonus points right!?

(secret: I just went and added the coffee stain on the napkin.  Mid post.  Here’s what I ALMOST posted ::wink::  Better, no?)

Black Coffee

Black Coffee

42 Duck, Duck, Grey Duck

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A tribute to Minnesota, my home state.  Most call the game ‘duck, duck, goose.’  Well, we Minnesotans call it duck, duck, grey duck.  My sister has always wanted a pet duck, and this summer she finally bought 3 ducklings.  I don’t do their cute-ness justice, but I needed to do something.  It was a rough start today, had another emotional break-down and doubted my painting abilities.  Still do. That’s an artists’ life I guess.

41 Orange Teapot 2

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SOLD

I think I like the composition of the first teapot better, but it was fun to do bigger brush strokes on a slightly larger panel with this one.  I didn’t change the angle of the pot at all, tomorrow I’ll have to do that.  I LOVE this orange!

I started the first round on the giant beast of a canvas today, the commission from a friend.  So far so good.  Just did some simple color blocking and the detailed the main subjects so I can reference everything else around them.  I don’t think I’ll post pictures till later, it’s a surprise and I’d hate to ruin it for them!

Orange Zinger

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(To purchase this painting go to the Hallberg Online Gallery)

Found this awesome teapot at Goodwill yesterday, score!  I love this deep orange-red color.  I’m excited to experiment with lots of purples and blue-greens.  I actually fought a lot with this one this morning, my poor husband came in to watch because I asked him to watch me paint sometime, but because it was going so horribly he said he’d just go make breakfast.  Sheesh, when will I learn.

I tried the ten minute challenge again from Daily Paintworks site again.  It was a fun challenge again, last time I did a cherry each time.  I want to use the excuse that a fork is too small to do in a 3x3in area, but I think I just need to learn how to simplify and paint only the necessary details to ‘suggest’ a fork.  Or zoom in a little more.  Ah well, here it is.

Need a fork?

Need a fork?

38 People Watching People

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It’s been a wonderful Saturday morning!  I had some women over for breakfast and summer small group planning for some church things, but it was just nice to have friends over, I hadn’t realized how long it had been.  The husband  had to go to work for a little while this morning so I had the apartment to myself once my friends left, which is nice because when he’s here I want to be with him!  Anyways, I got one small relax-the-brain painting out before I begin planning the GIANT commission that’s looming in the studio.  I hope to take it step-by-step but still keep the whole piece feeling unified and complete.

This was painted from a photo I took the same night we were out about Old Town and met local favorite Diane Findley.  I really want to practice some people studies and color blocking.  Capturing the positions of the bodies but only ‘suggesting’ the background.

37 Painting Demo (Paint Brushes) N/A

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This is actually my canvas from the art lesson I told you about with my 7 year old friend.  I have a few kids come over once a week for an art lesson, they’re pretty fun and give me excuses to draw or paint when I otherwise wouldn’t.  It was his idea to paint paintbrushes, I just adjusted them a little to make the composition more interesting, and put a sheet of paper underneath to break up the negative space.  The colors were just straight from the house paint colors I have lying around, no mixing lesson for the first day of painting : ).  But I really like how the composition and color placement turned out, for a quick demo that is.

Below is the final painting (I admit, somewhat rushed, since I had to submit them today) for the transformer cabinet.  To go along with yesterdays “How Do You Take Your Coffee,”  this one is the result of enjoying the coffee and making a mess.  I know they can’t kick me off the project, but I still want to please them, pray it all goes smoothly and they get my plan.

Coffee Accomplished | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 12x24in | $72

Coffee Accomplished | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 12x24in | $72

SOLD

Here’s a pic of the canvas I’m preparing for a commission, biggest one I’ve done yet!  And taking over my studio, yikes!

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36 Mountain Challenge -SOLD

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I had a CRAZY productive day painting yesterday!  5 total, one was for an art lesson with a 7 year old friend.  I’ll post that sometime too, super cute.

This one was another challenge on the Daily Paintworks website.  I got the photo from Morgue File, which is an online data base full of photos you don’t need copy rights for, pretty cool.  And to top the great day off, my painting sold day-of posting it!  Praise God, my heart was pretty encouraged.

Here’s another installment for the transformer cabinet project, I think I might do another one just for fun of only the black coffee, it was really fun to paint!  They have to be ‘busy’ so as to mitigate graffiti, so I’m making them all pretty retro.

How Do You Take Your Coffee? | Acrylic on Wood Board | 10x25.5in | $65

How Do You Take Your Coffee? | Acrylic on Wood Board | 10×25.5in | $65

 

Transformer Cabinet Project

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I’m working like a mad woman trying to get all the ideas for each side of the box done so I can send the images to the board before their meeting next week.  I think I have to get them sent by this friday, ugh, deadlines. ; )

Anything to Drink?

Anything to Drink?

SOLD

 

Choose your Weapon

Choose your Weapon

SOLD

This one went under lots of transformation.  It started out really dark green at the top, making it’s way to lighter at the bottom.  But the silverware just wasn’t popping enough.  Lime green it is!  I made the knife red at the last minute, much better. I tried another silverware one since the first one I did (below) just wasn’t doing it for me.  Maybe I’ll still submit it and hide it on the backside. ::smile::  Had fun doing these!  And it’s only 11am, oh the possibilities for the rest of the day.

The Queen's Silver | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 15x30in | $115

The Queen’s Silver

See what I mean?

35 Old Town Truck N/A

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Well I’m no Carol Marine, but hey, my first car, that means grace.  It is recognizable but it’s paintings like these that make me feel stuck and in need of some workshop or class.  I’m still struggling with painting like ‘me’ and painting like those I’m admiring.  I’d like to create my own style, and I certainly feel more free when I’m in my own mind and focus than when I’m attempting to copy a master.  Obviously.  Long way to go.

I have tomorrow off and plan to crank out at least two more transformer cabinet paintings to have ready for the council meeting.  My plan is to paint the box during July but I have to get each side plan approved, so that’s what I’m preparing currently.

Here’s another still life I finished tonight, I’m very pleased with it.  The colors are yummy.  I can always study values and getting my colors closer, but I will take what I can get.

Juice in the Milk Jug | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 12x16in | $50

Juice in the Milk Jug | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 12x16in | SOLD

34 Glass Case of Emotion

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Another daily painter I was admiring, Lisa Daria, numbers her posts with what number painting she’s on.  Brilliant!  (hence the 34). My husband named this one.  Carol Marine always talks about how she loves the distorted look glass gives things, this helped me ease up on the shapes of my tomatoes, and I do like how the background dips when it hit the glass.  I did one before this but it was so ‘mono-toned’ I had to add something red.  I bet if I made the little vase more green it would pop better.  Lesson learned.

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I heard word back from the city about which theme they would like me to pursue!  They chose the breakfast theme, which is fun because it’s right behind a Perkins.  So I was busy practicing some paintings for that today as well, here’s one I’m more proud of.  Hopefully it’s busy enough!

Bacon Strip | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 12x24in| $72

Bacon Strip | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 12x24in| $72

SOLD

 

 

Lime Dance

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Same limes.  Different composition.  I got to use a few more variations of greens for this one.  I want to do oranges next!

Glowing Limes

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It was Mexico night at the grocery store and everything for making salsa was on sale.  So we bought limes and made gin and tonics : ).  I was really trying to capture the light that comes through this transparent fruit.  Might try again tomorrow, but I like this square composition.  Things I’m currently focusing on: color combinations, interesting compositions, and correct values.  Some more than others as it’s REALLY hard to focus on all those at once.  I guess this one places higher on the composition practice and yummy color combos.

We were walking around Old Town again last night for the first Friday Art walk and ran into one of my favorite local artists, Diane Findley!  She was doing some live painting, so we watched and chatted for a while.  Another humbling, but tangible meeting.  Her style is so free and fun and colorful!  As we walked away I had that same feeling of, the more I get to know real artists, the less professional I feel like I have to be.  They’re all just learning and having fun too. Phew!

None the less, my warm up for today was much like her style:

Enjoying the Music | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 18x24in | $100

Enjoying the Music | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 18x24in | $100

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Oak Avenue

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This photo is also from last weekend when we took the bus to the farmers market in Old Town.  The restaurant next door to this art gallery is one of our favorite date night places.  I like the composition of the painting, I think I will work on colors and values a little more after today.  I actually found a sweet challenge for practicing values on the DailyPaintworks website.  This might just be my warm up for tomorrow!

P.S. there are TONS of cool challenges on this website if you’re fixin’ to have an excuse to paint.

Also, this marks the one month of me painting daily!  One tiny step in the big goal.  But it’s cool to see the progress and confidence already.

A Few Larger Ones

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No daily painting yet, but I thought you all might like to see what else I worked on yesterday!  This is the still life that took 3 sittings, I need breaks to keep my eyes fresh on it.  Of course there are somethings I could touch up to make more accurate, but for now I might just appreciate it’s quirks.

Red Sugar | Acrylic on Wood Panel | 24x24in | $145

Red Sugar | Acrylic on Wood Panel | 24x24in | $145

(to purchase this painting go to the Hallberg Online Gallery)

This next one is what my husband requested for his birthday present.  His birthday isn’t until Monday, but I’m the worst at waiting to give presents.  I tried to hide it so I would forget about it, but the minute he came home I had to give it to him.  This is why I can post it today! I’m the worst.

This is our dog as a traditional old-timey portrait.  It was the hardest thing to resist putting a shakespearian collar on her….maybe I’ll just paint her again. ; )

Lord Hallie | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 16x20in | NFS

Lord Hallie | Acrylic on Stretched Canvas | 16x20in | NFS

Neighbor’s “Weeds”

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SOLD

Not sure if these were actually weeds, or planned, but they were all over this front yard around the corner from our apartment.  They were the prettiest shades of purple, so I grabbed them on our walk last night.

I have the day off today, so I’m working on a bigger still life as well, I’ll post a picture of the progress.  Larger ones that take more ‘sittings’ are always scary because I get a few layers of paint down and it of course doesn’t look like it should.  But once you begin putting the ‘finishing touches’ on it the painting comes together and makes sense.  I always have to push through this middle phase as I doubt myself a ton!  I hope to get it all done in one day, I find that if I let some go till the next time I paint I loose interest and never finish…anyone else?

I also have a secret birthday present for my husband I need to work on too, as his birthday is in less than a week!  He actually spotted me working on it the other day and made a correction on the composition….at least he’ll like it better now that I know how he wants it!

Still Life in progress. 24x24in

Still Life in progress. 24x24in

Sorry it’s a little blurry!  Maybe it will add to the suspense and make the end result look even better. ::wink::  Can you tell I only have a few fabrics to use, they pop up in lots of my still lifes.

Girly Glass N/A

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Okay, so I painted this yesterday, but I need to take a breather I think.  I’m beginning to over-work myself in an attempt for instant improvement again.  I have to take a step back and return to the basics.  I have an art lesson with my 8 year old friend today, hopefully something will relax and reset in me during the doodle time with her.  Weird how one week (day) I can feel so overwhelmingly inspired, and the next it’s gone.  Hmph…Artists.

Midnight Snack -SOLD

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Okay, so I posted two today.  I’m honestly not proud of the other one and I didn’t want it to headline ALL day.  Call me vain.

I did this one a few days ago and just had it around as a back up in case I missed a day.  I actually DO really like this one.  The shadows started out more pink, but after making dinner and coming back to it, they still bugged me.  So now they’re blue.  Yumm.

Curly Pepper N/A

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Well guys, I have a lot to learn about painting fabric.  But this pepper was so cool at the grocery store!  I was picking out jalapenos and thought, why not find a pretty one.  As long as we’re going to eat it anyways, might as well paint it first.

I think I tried to focus on all the “rules” at once and lost all meaning to this one.  I really think it’s time for a class or workshop or something.  I NEED DIRECTION.  I have that plateau feeling, after the first two weeks of improvement, improvement… help?

 

Market Day with Dad

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SOLD

We took the bus to the farmer’s market yesterday and I snapped photos whenever I could without being awkward.  This little girl was in a corner of one of my photos but I thought she looked so cute watching the dog in the background.

When we were coming home from the farmers market the bus drove by an artist painting one of the transformer cabinets like I get to paint soon.  So we walked back to her and chatted for a while.  Ren Burke is her name and she was very friendly and helpful!  I got to see how she set her things up and prepared each side of the box, much less intimidated now by the whole process.  I love discovering the laid-backness of artists around here, reminds me that being my ever-learning self is okay.  Professionalism can come later. ::wink::

Here’s the original image cropped, because I think it’s fascinating to compare them.  Also, any tips or composition help is most appreciated!