Saturday, May 29, 2010

Dad and the lawnmower

Being in possession of a multiple personality disorder I am developing a couple of children's books. This illustration is for a story I am writing about my goofy dad and his antics He was always repairing or modifying something and his favourite activity was making something more powerful and faster. Though his methods were unorthodox and unsophisticated he was an amazing mechanic. But sometimes things went awry. Like the time he replaced the carburetor on my cousin's car and it caught on fire. In my book I modify that experience to the time Dad fixed the lawnmower.

Friday, May 28, 2010

San Geronimo

A study for a larger painting. This is 6x6 on wood, a horse pasture in a West Marin area known as San Geronimo. Note to self: need to figure out horse anatomy. Lots of leg joints I don't quite understand. Memories of going to summer camp and riding a horse for the first time. Not having much exposure to animals at the time I was expecting it to be soft, like...our plush toys? Well, that horse's back was HARD. First time I really thought about the disadvantages of external genitalia. Yeoow! Then the horse ran under some low hanging tree branches. I'll paint horses and let someone else ride them.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Red Flower

The little 4x4 paintings were been well-received at my show opening. I would see people standing in front of them for a while and they seemed to really enjoy looking at them, so I'll probably do more and evolve them into images that have a little more going on. I just did this flower that I saw in my neighbor's garden. This is also a 4x4 on wood. At the risk of sounding like a know-it-all, the title demonstrates my extensive botanical knowledge.

Monday, May 24, 2010


Another piece for my show. This one is a 6x6 wood panel. I'm getting into this still life thing but will probably take it in a different direction now, although what I don't know. I'll be hanging the show in a few hours. It started off as 18 pieces but all the 4x4 paintings made it 29. A bunch of my friends are showing up so it'll be a good party and I'm pricing stuff so that they'll go home with someone else.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Love Ducky

Another 4x4 inch painting on wood. I'm going to have 12 of these in my show. They're really fun to do, almost like eating one of those mini ice cream bon bons called Dabs. They're fast (compared to a bigger painting) to do, too small to get anal retentive with, and look...uh, cute. Never thought I'd describe my work as cute but these are. Everyone I've shown them to loves them. Maybe it's the puppy/kitten thing. Someone was asking what kind of work I do. I happened to have one in my pocket. So I whipped it out. The painting that is. Well, here, this is what I do. The surprised response? "Wow, that's cool. It's cute." Look out, I'm carrying cute in my pocket!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


I've been painting on wood an really liking it. Perhaps because it's a hard surface, I am able to get thick brush strokes that seem to disappear on canvas. Also, it's easy to sand off something I don't like and re-prime the surface without changing it much. Canvas loses its texture as the primer gets thicker so the paint doesn't act the same way and washes don't flow as well. I use cradled wood panels, meaning that there is reinforcing wood framework on the back of the surface. The sides of the reinforcing wood strips make for a nice edge that doesn't require framing. Framing could be added but it's actually redundant.

I'm doing a number of small still lifes (lives?) for my show. This bag is one of them. For some weird reason, my usual painting procedure has a different appearance when its on wood. I start off with a monochromatic underpainting. I will do a drawing and then build up medium and dark tonal areas. Usually this stage will look great on canvas, but on wood it's not very attractive. Then I add heavier colored areas and it really comes to life. This bag didn't look that great as an underpainting so I was afraid it would be a mediocre painting and then I added the color it was transformed into a piece I really like.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


I've got a show coming up at the Tiburon-Belvedere Library here in Marin County CA. The opening is May 25 from 6-8pm and this will be one of the paintings there. It's acrylic on a wood panel, which is becoming one of my favorite surfaces to use. Being stiff and non-porous it's quite different from canvas but I like the way thick paint goes on. This is 4 inches by 4 inches. Been working my bootie off seven days a week getting ready for this show and the following one July 4th weekend.