This is actually Pancake Breakfast at Emily Oaks Nature Center in Skokie, Illinois. Since I had painted the same aspect of Emily Oaks pond, I wasn't about to do it again. There really aren't that many different things I see to paint there, but I had never done this. There was a crowd and people coming and going, so it's not really something you can dwell on for long -- the people that is. So I did just block-ins of the people. I I did a terrible painting this Saturday with the PAPC, washed it off, so it will never be seen again (thankfully). This is an oil on canvas, 11 x 14".
I did these two 8 by 10s during the usual plein air Saturday morning events. One was done near the River Walk at the Michigan Avenue Bridge just north of downtown Chicago. It was okay, but involved a long walk lugging my gear to the site. (I'm usually not happy if I have to carry things a mile.) The second painting I did near the old lumber area, when Chicago was rebuilding after the Great Chicago Fire, there were lumber mills taking in trees from Michigan. There's still a street named Lumber Street. Lots of railroad lines heading east as they pass this site, sounding their horns. So.....after I gave a dollar to a homeless woman....I set up and painted this boat in a boat yard --- the site is also near the South Branch of the Chicago River. I painted for about an hour and a half and left. Most of the other painters paint until noon and gather for lunch. I'm not so much inclined, a bit of a loner. Works for me.
This is an 8 x 10" plein air I did with the Plein Air Painters of Chicago. The location is Montrose Harbor at Lake Michigan where those who own sailboats moor their boats. I drove up, found a parking space and got my painting gear ready. First, although I am a member of the PAPC, I paint where I want. Often they gather together for that group feeling, which I don't need. I prefer painting by myself. Second, I was lucky to get a free parking space --- there are parking lots nearby, but they are expensive ---- Chicago likes to charge and tax everything. Anyhow, this 8 x 10 took me about an hour and a half and I was able to give a little indication of the warm humid atmosphere from the look of the distant buildings downtown.
This is a 10" x 16" (odd size, I know) oil on canvas. Depicted is a scene I saw when we visited Kalamazoo, Michigan at the Bell's Brewery. Bell's has a restaurant at the location -- very good one indeed -- besides the brewery, the older brewery at that site. The brewery tour we took is located 7 miles away in Comstock, MI where there larger brewery is. When I parked the car near the restaurant I was about a block away and passed this loading dock. I really liked the color I saw in these wooden barrels and snapped a photo between the wires of their cyclone fence. The painting took about a week or so.
On the last morning of my art guild's drawing class --- off for the summer --- I did this watercolor portrait of a model in 30 minutes. Here 30 minutes is a "long pose" so you have to work quick. Nothing like working from the model, so I passed up my other Saturday morning group, the Plein Air Painters of Chicago. I will be with them the rest of the summer.
Last week I went to the John C. Campbell Folk School for a still life painting class. I did eight paintings over 4 1/2 days ---- not that I was trying to set any kind of record, mind you, I just work hard and work fast. I set up these still lifes myself, although the instructor, Melody Boggs, is a very accomplished in composition. These are all 8" x 10", two on linen and one canvas. Sorry about the pctures -- I took them in haste before they got varnish.
After an all day session on painting there is time in the evening to observe a little Morris dancing. Check it out -- John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, North Carolina.
About ten years ago when we were in London, I took a photo of this street scene in Hampstead.....Hampstead Heath. We had just taken a tour of an English poet's house when we continued on to this scene. We went to a very nice bookstore and the next to it was a tea shop. Since it was a rather daunting task to paint all the cars, buildings, trees, people, it took me a long time to decide to paint it. This was not easy and took me several months to do it. The painting is an oil on canvas (stretched by me, of course!) 20" X 24".
I've done a good number of shows in The Next Picture Show Gallery in Dixon, Illinois. When I drive up to drop off a painti, this is the doorway next door to the gallery. It looked interesting to me and I snapped a picture, probably two years ago. Finally I did the painting (that happens a lot -- I take a picture and need something to do in the Winter up in the studio). This is a 9" x 8" oil on canvas. Yes, it's a weird size and I'll have to have a frame custom made.
Long time no blog entries, but then everyone seems to be going to Facebook.
These are some of the work I did last summer painting with, and sometimes without the Plein Air Painters of Chicago. I also did the Winter show with the PAPC held at the Palette & Chisel in Chicago. I did a couple paintings along the North Branch of the Chicago River and have decided to make a series of River paintings at various spots along the river. While painting there one day a woman sneaked up within 6 feet of me and scared the daylights out of me. Another interesting experience was while painting in Wicker Park --- had a couple homeless guys come up and talk to me for about 20 minutes. Never a dull moment.