Tuesday, December 27, 2016

#85 - Pickwick Theater

12" x 24" Oil on gessobord

This was a Christmas gift for my son who lives right next door to this Art Deco gem.

#84 - Family Farm

Oil on canvas 48" x 36"

This painting has been keeping me busy for a couple months. I've posted smaller iterations of this scene which led up to this bigger painting. I have never painted such a big painting and actually really enjoyed dealing with each section in detail. I have the online mentoring of Kim Casebeer to thank for any success I might have had.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

#83 - Harvest Time

8" x 10" Oil on canvas panel

It is harvest time in Illinois and farmers are getting their crops in. It was a beautiful day so I parked next to a cornfield and captured it during harvest.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

#82 - Country Lane

18" x 24" Oil on canvas

I've been working on this scene for a while. I painted it 8" x 10" first and then the above. I'm now doing it 36" x 48". It has been a good exercise doing the same painting three times and at a different scale.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

#81 - Crossroads

8" x 10" Oil on canvas panel, Plein Air

I was out looking for a painting recently and came across this scene. I was drawn to the shadow across the road, and the choice to make, left or right.

Monday, August 8, 2016

#80 - Country Copse

8" x 10" Oil on canvas panel, Plein Air

I had limited time to paint so I stepped out on our deck and painted a copse of tress across our wetlands. I love this time of year, but we keep losing our dog back there in the 4' grasses.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

#79 - Sister Bay

8" x 10" Oil on canvas, Plein Air

Another painting from Door County last week. This was at the Quick Paint at the end of the Plein Air Festival. I like the stakes in the foreground and their shadows on the sand.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

#78 - Ellison Bay

8" x 10" Oil on canvas, Plein Air

It has been a while since I posted anything but that doesn't mean I haven't been painting. We were up in Door County last week and I was able to get out a couple time. Above is from an afternoon painting session on Ellison Bay from the park. Beautiful day and an even more beautiful setting.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

#77 - Sunset Barn

Oil on canvas, 8"x10"

Loved the colors in the sky one evening so I grabbed my camera and hopped into my car. I came across this supremely idyllic scene right outside of town. On occasion, Illinois can be awesome.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

#76 - Nice Dairy Air

8" x 10" Oil on canvas panel
Plein Air

On Memorial Day, my son (who is also a painter) and I, went north into Wisconsin to paint and came across this little slice of Americana. Quite fitting for the day we honor those who have given their all to ensure it.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

#75 - Far Afield

8" x 10" Oil on canvas

We were out walking in a conservation area last weekend came across this barn. I liked the shadow of the silo thrown against the barn wall and the trees budding out in the background.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

#74 - Florentine Banks

10" x 8" Oil on canvas panel

I painted this one from a picture my son took in Florence from another bridge over the Arno. Loved the contrast between the cool sky and river and the warm bridge and buildings.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

#73 - Stellar Afternoon

8" x 10" Oil on canvas panel

My son Jon was home this weekend and he wanted to go out painting with me (see Jon's work at https://cubiclism.com) so we dragged Maureen along and drove north looking for a suitable spot to paint.

After too much time fighting crowds in Lake Geneva, we found ourselves in nearby Williams Bay at the world famous Yerkes Observatory. Built in 1897 it has the world's largest refracting telescope (40") and an idyllic campus on Lake Geneva. We found some shade under a pine and spent a wonderful couple hours painting, chatting and bemoaning the changing light.

Friday, April 1, 2016

#72 - Say Ahhh

6" x 6" Oil on gessobord

It was a beautiful spring morning and I was on my way to work. I really wanted to be on my way to painting something when I came across this farm shed. The sun was just creeping over the trees biting into the hoarfrost and the contrast between the cool frost and warm sun echoed the cool shed and warm wagon. I'll be back to paint it plein air someday soon, but I doubt I'll find the perfect morning again.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

#71 - My Kind of Spring Primaries...

6" x 6" Oil on gessobord

...and one secondary. If the political season has been conjuring up in you phrases like 'rotten egg' or 'goose egg', remember the humble Easter Egg, symbol of new life, empty tombs and hope.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

#70 - Marsh Mellow

8" x 10" Oil on canvas panel

A beautiful early spring day in northern Illinois and I packed my paints into a backpack and drove to a big conservation area. After a 20 minute hike I found a nice little marsh in the foreground with a prairie with a stand of trees in the far background.

Friday, March 4, 2016

#69 - Daily Grind

6" x 6" oil on stretched canvas

Helping Paws in Woodstock, IL is an animal shelter that rescues animals in McHenry County until a suitable home can be found with a family. They do good work by providing spay/neuter services, vaccinations, and other health care. Every year Help Paws holds a fundraiser by selling art. I submitted Daily Grind this year and proceeds go to help the shelter. Visit Art for the Paws Facebook page for more information, or bid here.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

#68 - A Bug's Life

6" x 6" Oil on canvas panel

My favorite car was a white 1969 VW Beetle. I bought it the summer before my junior year in college and worked on it every day to make it road worthy for the trip from home outside Boston to my fraternity house in Indiana. When the departure day arrived, my dad and I gave the car one last once-over and I took off. After only one side-of-the-road repair, I arrived at school 20 hours later and spent the next few hours unpacking and telling everyone I encountered about my amazing new German sports car. That evening, at a 'Welcome Back' party at the fraternity, I was stopped by a girl I did not know who said, "I heard you got a new sports car." And I replied, "Yeah, do you want a ride?" It's been quite a ride, now 34 years later. Maureen and I have had many cars, but that little white bug will always be #1.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

#67 - Spring Training for Wrigley

8" x 10" Oil on canvas panel

A few weekends ago it was unseasonably warm and Maureen and I took our dog, Wrigley, to the conservation area. With the warm air and snow on the ground, the fog was thick. We walked for 90 minutes with Wrigley off leash and she loved every minute.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

#66 - Sunrise Commute

8" x 10" Oil on canvas panel

I was on my way to work recently and the sunrise was spectacular. I grabbed my phone and snapped a picture and painted it this week. The picture appealed to me because of the wide range of colors and depth of the shot.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

#65 - Frost's Road

8" x 10" Oil on canvas panel, plein air

It was 40F yesterday in northern Illinois and I was so happy to be outside painting again. I drove into the countryside and encountered this vista and a line from Robert Frost's 'The Road Not Taken' popped into my head (Thank you, Mrs. Ellen Eberly, Westwood High School). "Then took the other, as just as fair, And having perhaps the better claim, Because it was grassy and wanted wear..."

The late afternoon sky was fighting to clear and let some sun in but it never succeeded, so the colors remained somewhat muted.  It would be a great place to set up in the spring and perhaps paint it again on a 8" x 16" canvas to capture a bit more of the horizon..."Yet knowing how way leads to way, I doubted if I should ever come back."

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

#64 - Home

8" x 16" Oil on primed linen panel

We live on some wetlands and I like the way our house looks from across the pond out back. I took the picture this was painted from last spring before the grass got tall and some of the previous year's grass was dried and evident. Our three boys loved playing back in the pond catching frogs and turtles, and this is the view they grew up with.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

#63 - Apple Jack

6" x 6" Oil on gessobord

I came across one of my dad's old jack knives the other day that I acquired when my mom and dad downsized a couple years ago. He always has a knife in his pocket and I have fond childhood memories of him digging it out of his pocket to either cut some garden twine, tighten a screw, open a bottle of pop for me (or a beer for himself) or cut up and apple.

#62 - Winter Tulip

6" x 6" Oil on gessobord

We had a very warm December in northern Illinois and one mild Saturday afternoon we sat on our neighbor's porch and enjoyed a bourbon in a nice glass. I took a picture and thought it might be a good subject to paint.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

#61 - Autumn Shed

6" x 6" Oil on gessobord

We were driving on a country road in November and I saw this shed at the side of the road. I like the open door and simple lines. I also like the reflection on the wet path in the foreground.