Monthly Archives: January 2009

The ice painting series continues…

 Today I finished up the second piece in the ice painting series.  Click on thumbnail below to see a larger image. 



Untitled (Ice Painting II) 2009

24″ x 24″ oil and oil bar on panel 


If you have been following the creation of this series, you will notice how the original composition and vibrant colors are now buried beneath translucent, semi-opaque and opaque layers of paint. 

As I painted each layer, I worked in more detail, representing all of the bits of debris encased in the layers of ice.  Looking at these close up, you may be able to see the tiny dots, and semi-sheer grid pattern.  

These are heavily painted pieces, however, there are areas laid bare to the first layer. 

to be continued…  



Posted in "Ice" painting series

Goodbye Andrew Wyeth.


Andrew Wyeth has died.  He died in his sleep at the age of 91, at home.   

Christina’s World, Andrew Wyeth 

Andrew Wyeth, New York Times, Obituary 


 I began defining myself as an artist at the age of twelve.  Around that age, I started paying attention to living artists. Andrew Wyeth was one of the first artists I encountered, (I think I saw a print in an adult-friend’s study), and as a result I became obsessed with drawing, (line, form, shape and mass, perspective, space, proportion and scale, light and pattern).  I taught myself to draw everyday objects and local scenes, and as a result I learned to really look at the world closely – to really see.  I will always be grateful to Andy Wyeth for inspiring me to learn those basic skills.  

 Although I was impressed with Andrew Wyeth’s artistic skills, (much in the way you might be impressed with a musicians chops), what held my interest then, and now, was the emotional content of his work.  Whenever I have read criticism of Wyeth, I have always felt that the critic was missing the deeper content of Wyeth’s work due to arrogance or stubbornness or plain old ignorance.

 I believe that Andrew Wyeth is as modern as any artist of our time.  Criticism of Wyeth based on his chosen style, medium and content grows more hollow with the passing years.  Some of Wyeth’s work was quite abstract.  At times Wyeth was criticized for his illustrative skill, (and unapologetic use of those skills), and dismissed as a mere draftsman.  To me this has always seemed simple-minded and foolish.  I would never dismiss a musician based on his/her skill.  I think great art, no matter the form, usually involves both skill, (sometimes described as craftsmanship), and vision.  

 I can not imagine a world with only classical music, or jazz or pop.  And I can not imagine art with only one mode of expression.  

 Thank you for all you gave us Andrew Wyeth.  Rest in peace. 



Posted in Inspirational artists

A window into the ice painting process, continued…


An update on the ice painting, as I continue work on the second piece in this series. The debris, (branches, bits of pine cone casing and needles), and the ice itself form interesting organic shapes and loose geometric patterns frozen in water.  The paintings, inspired by close examination of the ice, are comprised of many layers.  I have several pieces going at once, reworking them as they dry.  I began by sketching out the linear shapes in oil bar over transparent washes on the panel.  From there I painted in the colorful chips, (inspired by the debris), and semi-opaque layers of white-washed oil bar and oil paint.  I notice the ice forms change daily… sometimes clear and sometimes milky.  The most beautiful appear to be a combination of both. Looking at the ice each day as it changes, I am reminded of a kaleidoscope, with shifting pieces of colored glass.

 For a larger view of this second piece in progress, click on the thumbnail below… 


(ice painting two, 24″ x 24″, oil on panel)



Posted in "Ice" painting series, Seeing, Studio

The garden in winter…



Beyond the dogwood, the remains of trees broken in last month’s ice storm.



 Garden remnants encased in ice and snow… the vine is hops, the stalks, rodgersia

(the three thumbnails can be clicked to enlarge the photo) 


After two days of stormy weather, I finally had a look around the garden today just before plowing the driveway at dark. 



Posted in Seeing