Finished Inking

Inking completed

Inking completed

Well, I must say I am pretty pleased with the portrait so far. It was a little complicated using older pictures for the landscaping and newer ones for the structure itself, but it turned out fine.  I ended up doing the left and right landscaping last because I had to determine what I needed to do.  The right side views conflicted, new and old, and the left was partially blocked by a car.  I thought long and hard how to resolve the issues.

I laid down the preliminary pastels today but it will still take several days to finish. It is so large I have to stand at my table when I work on the upper area.  And after I do finish, I will need to let it sit for a day to get fresh eyes.  Even if I finish it by the weekend, I may wait until after the holiday to send it out.

Commission update

Work in Progress

Work in Progress

This is taking quite a while to ink in due to its large size. Instead of 2 maybe 3 days for the inking, this will take 5 to 6. The large size (20″x16″) alone dictates extensive work, but I have had to do a lot of pencil preliminary too.  I only do one this big every few years, but at least this is an interesting house for the work.

It is going to end up being a study of positive and negative space before I get to the pastels.  Something this large will need to have good balance. So far I am pleased, but it is taking a long time as I have to lay out much more in pencil before I ink it.  Once I get the brick in, the evergreens won’t look quite so dark.  The ink is not really quite as dense as it appears here for them.  It darkened up somewhat when I used the auto-correct in picture manager.  No big deal for here.

I really like what the window boxes have done for the presentation.  Along with the half rounds above the windows, they make a flat brick facade quite attractive. The little little gate off to the right is quite pretty too.  The left is just the driveway, but it should turn out okay as long as I keep the black/white balance good.

The rest should go more quickly as I have most of the pencil layout already in.  It’s probably 2 more days anyway.  The pastels should be much quicker.

Georgia commission

Georgia commission

Georgia commission

While I was working on the Jasper streetscape, I received an inquiry for a home portrait. The children of parents celebrating their 50th anniversary in June wanted to know if I could create a portrait of the home that they all grew up in as a special gift and get it to them before the celebration.  I readily agreed. It’s not often that I get that much lead time and I should be able to get it to them in plenty of time to have it framed.

It is a lovely full brick house.  The brick is multicolor brown with undertones of peach.  The archways and doorway inset are a peach stucco with interesting block inserts of a sailing ship and oak trees.  The landscaping is quite lovely, too.  The evergreen shrubs are mature and nicely shaped.  Most impressive though are the window boxes filled with bright red impatiens flowers.  Red flowers also line the base of the shrubbery.  The door is a light teal.  Someone really loved color.

As a funny aside, the person I have been e-mailing with wanted to make sure that I included the offset brickwork on the corners.  He said that when they were younger, they used to climb the bricks like a ladder and it was a treasured memory. Easily done and I couldn’t imagine not putting it in anyway, as it is a feature of the house.  I think he just wanted to make sure.

It is a large portrait at 20″x16″ so it will take a while to finish.  Inking starts tomorrow, pastels by the end of the week.

Jasper 3

Jasper 3 Streetscape

Jasper 3 Streetscape

Well, after a week away visiting with family, I finally got back to the studio.  I picked another view of the Jasper town square and penciled it up yesterday.  It, too, has the lively colors of the others.  The ice cream shop has dark and light shades of lilac, with orange brick above so the colors will vivid once again.  I look forward to putting on the watercolors.

Spring has sprung here.  The redbud trees are just about finished, although the dogwoods are still blooming quite nicely. This year my red dogwood managed to avoid having its flowers eaten by the deer and I had at least a dozen flowers on its small frame.  I should be out looking for morels, but I have a sneaking suspicion that we may be too late already.  My irises are budding and the daffodils are finished.  I love spring.  Maybe that is why I like green so much.

Runner Drawing

Running on the trails

Running on the trails

Most of you that follow my blog know that I rarely do figurative work. I have been asked to create an image of a runner and I am going to do my best to try. Since I haven’t done much like that, I know I’m going to need to practice up.  I took some of my photos and made these two as a first stab at it.  These aren’t too bad for a first stab at it, but I think I’ll have to keep at it, so over the next few months I will be occasionally posting my efforts.  Hopefully after a dozen tries, I’ll get this where I want it.

I have my next architectural in mind already.  Back to Jasper for one more streetscape.

Playing hooky

New aceos

New aceos

I must admit to playing hooky over the last week.  The weather has been warming up and while I had to dodge some rain, I was able to do my “fall cleanup” for a few days.  The flower beds are ready for spring weeding and as soon as it dries up some, I’ll be out there pulling grass, dandelions, and other assorted weeds that have already sprung up.  The redbuds are fully blooming and the dogwoods are coming on.  My red dogwood survived the winter cold and the deer with most of the flowers intact. so I am happy about that.  The daffodils are almost done though.  I have been picking them to put in the kitchen, but they haven’t lasted over long.  It is still early to buy any flowers for planting, but I’m getting the urge to.  We are having a high deer fence put around our garden this spring because we are tired of the deer, raccoons, rabbits, possums, etc. eating up everything including the fruit trees.  I might as well just been giving the wildlife the money the last few years.  LOL

I did spend some time making some new aceo/gift tags.  I have my next project in mind, but I have to do some photo research before I can start.  Here’s a peek at the aceos.  I’ll be listing some of them in the next few days.

Florida Watercolor

Florida watercolor

Florida watercolor

The Florida house has a much different feel than the Ohio house, both because of the different materials used and the subject matter. It too has an abundance of greenery, but this one has a lighter, sunnier feel to it. Palm trees always make a picture feel more exotic, don’t you think?  It didn’t have as many flowers as I might have expected, but the ones that were there helped moderate the green vegetation. It was all reds instead of yellows this time.  It seems to me I have seen a higher proportion of red, pink, and white pink flowers in southern yards.  We seem to have more yellows and blues along with the reds up here.  Maybe it is just the time of year though.

Large parts of the house were hidden by the lush landscaping and I had to pare back the shrubs somewhat – just not enough to change the overall impression. The area under the covered entryway was much darker because of the bright sunlight, so I lightened it up, as if the sky were more cloudy.  Otherwise, all anyone would see was that big two car garage.  I doubt that is what the buyer had in mind.  I think it all was pretty successful,

Next up will be a few new aceo/gift tags.  I have sold quite a few in the last month and need to replace them in my etsy shop.  Fortunately, I have plenty of blanks made up so it won’t take long.

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