Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Observer 16" X 20" pastel on Art Spectrum board

                                                                               
Coyotes abound in this area and are most active in the summer especially at night when they hunt. Every so often we see one strolling through the neighborhood early in the morning, or we hear a pack of them howling together probably after they've found a meal.

The Art Spectrum "board" I used was a deep terracotta color which turned out to be a good match for much of his fur. I left the base color peeking through the pastel in places instead of covering it all up.


Monday, March 31, 2014

Early Arrivals 8" x 8" Pastel on PastelMat

                                                                             
  
Recently, an artist friend won First Place in a local art show put on by our local Art League. Several of us have an "art get-together" once a week where we all work on our current projects, so we saw her beautiful painting come to life over the weeks.

We had a simple celebration party for her at the following weekly get-together. We had a tulip bouquet on the table to celebrate our friend, the arrival of Spring, and friendship in general. These tulips were from the bouquet.

The painting will be auctioned on the DailyPaintworks website beginning tomorrow, April 1. (Seriously.) Click  HERE for the link.

Monday, March 10, 2014

More Marbles #2 8" X 8" pastel on Pastelmat

                                                                                 
What a joy it was to paint another marble painting. All those circles and ellipticals and colors. Just plain old fun!!

DailyPaintworks will have this up for auction beginning Tuesday, March 11th at this link:  http://www.dailypaintworks.com/Artists/carol-flatt-1045


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Cassidy's Marbles 6" X 8" Pastel on Wallis SOLD

                                                                                
I couldn't resist the reflections coming through these marbles in the original photo from WetCanvas.
I haven't played marbles since I was a kid, but when I was teaching many students were bringing this game back to popularity. They were totally engrossed in play, and I loved watching them!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Shades of Green 2 7" X 10" Pastel

                                                                            
Painting succulents could become a habit with me. Their variegated  colors and wonderful shapes make each one unique and a joy to render.

I will put this onto the DailyPaintworks website tomorrow. I was having some technical trouble today.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

A Time to Enjoy 8" X 8" Oil on canvasboard

                                                                               
This oil painting took me awhile to complete. I had to wipe off after a couple of sessions because I thought the color should be different or the texture could be more pronounced. This, in my opinion goes back to pre-planning, or in my case, the lack of it. Why do I do this? Mostly, it's because I'm just too anxious to pick up the brush and begin applying paint. I know better. I really do. Values don't give me too much trouble, but when it comes to color a small color sketch would really save time and frustration, I'm sure. Is January 5th too late to make a New Year's resolution?

Robin Weiss, a painter from Washington state whose work I just love, begins with a monochromatic underpainting  in diluted oil paint.  He uses a burnt sienna/transparent red oxide-ish color. This is a big help with values and because some of it is left showing through the top layers, it adds additional interest when completed. I don't know if he makes a color sketch as well, but his finished colors are always rich and clean.

What excited me about this painting was using a large brush to apply color in the woman's shirt and the water. I've been trying to create a "looser" approach to paint application, and I was happy with the outcome in those areas. Yay!

Click HERE to go to auction page at DailyPaintworks.





Sunday, December 22, 2013

Merry Christmas And Thank You! Mixed Media (by my grandson)

                                                                               
Warm wishes of the Christmas Season to all of you! My five-year-old grandson made this tree recently, and I thought I'd share it with you, my wonderful blogging friends.

Thank you very much for all your support and encouragement and presence throughout this year. It is comforting to know you're all out there.Your comments, suggestions and ideas have been such an  incentive and source of inspiration.

Hoping that 2014 will bring you all many blessings, good health and much happiness.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Fruits of Her Labor 8" X 8" Pastel on Pastelmat

                                                                             
This is a photo I used from Morguefile.com, a website where people post pictures they've taken and are willing to share with others. It is especially handy if you want to paint/draw a picture of something to which you don't have access. Because I live in the desert of southern Arizona I use MF on occasion when I need certain plants that don't grow here or an animal whose habitat is elsewhere, etc.

WetCanvas.com is another wonderful resource for many things art wise. They have a photo reference file that is quite good, that is, the photos are taken by people who know that lighting is important and what goes into a quality photo. They also have much other art-related information.

Both these sights are free as are the photos.

This painting will go on Dailypaintworks auction tomorrow, December 5th. Click HERE to go to the auction page.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Close To Capacity 6" X 8" oil on panel

                                                                               
It's funny how some colors react when they're being photographed. I worked and worked to get the saturation as accurate as possible in this photo, but when you adjust one color it makes slight changes in the other colors. However, I feel it's very representative of how it actually appears.

What I enjoyed about this was deciding upon and applying several warm and cool greens. Green is very wide-ranging in its hues, and it's just fun to apply several of varying temperatures on one object. I also applied the tabletop colors with both brush and palette knife when I applied both beige and ochre for a mottled look.

Available at DailyPaintworks beginning Monday.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Shades of Green 8" X 8" Pastel SOLD

                                                                             
Recently, I bought some Terry Ludwig sets of warm and cool greens. Green has always been a difficult color for me in that I feel I never have enough greens or never the RIGHT one. Now, no more excuses. If the RIGHT one isn't in the sets I don't need it. Honest!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Mt. Lemmon Morning 8" X 16" Oil on linen panel

                                                                              
Mt. Lemmon near Tucson offers a nice break from the intense temperatures we get in the summer months. It's a great place to hike, picnic or camp and the pine trees and running streams offer a refreshing break.

The colors in the rocks were fun to play with, and although the reference photo taken by my son who often hikes in the area showed very lush and dense vegetation, I tried to cut back on the amount I put in the painting. Only after completion did I realize I situated the rocks right smack-dab in the center. Hmmm!

This painting will be available beginning  tomorrow, September 17th in an auction at DailyPaintworks.
Click HERE to go to their website.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Thirst Quenchers 10" X 6.5" Pastel

                                                                               
I am a real fan of oranges both to eat and to paint. Luckily, I live in a locale where citrus trees can grow, so at certain times of the year they are easily available and as fresh as can be. In fact, sometimes neighbors have so many they can't use them all. Then, the local food bank profits and so do neighbors as often bags or boxes of citrus fruits are put on the curb with a "Free" or "Take Me" sign.

The light in the reference photo is what  caught my eye. It brought out the vivid color of the oranges and created dark shadows...something that painters love.

This painting will go on auction at DailyPaintworks beginning tomorrow, September 12th.
HERE is a link to the site. 


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Summer Quartet 8" X 8" Pastel on watercolor paper

                                                                               
As a change of pace I worked on a surface I haven't tried before. I used a sheet of watercolor paper and drew my design. I loosely painted it with watercolor to get the colors set. When dry, I coated the sheet with a clear gesso - just one coat - brushing my strokes in many different directions. When the gesso was dry I began with the pastel work.

I knew beforehand that the surface would be rough because of the gesso and the strokes going here and there, but it's always interesting to watch how it goes on. In some places I rubbed it into the grain with my finger. In other places I just let the pastel sit on the top (pressed in with my finger but not rubbed in.) It's a very textured piece, but I like that effect for this one. Oranges are rough, right?

The difficult  part was actually getting a photo that truly represented the painting. The heavy texture wanted to "sparkle" in the lens and getting the lighting correct was hard. Alas! I did my best.

Up for auction at DailyPaintworks. Click right here.

Friday, August 2, 2013

By Any Other Name 6" X 8" pastel on Wallis

                                                                               
I was taken with the light on these lovely roses. It created sparkles (reflections) on the glass vase which were fun to try and capture. Roses are complex little things. Sometimes, the artist gets lost in the maze of petals encircling the center. It seems that each individual petal has its own pattern of values which is not repeated by other petals. Therefore, you have to evaluate each one pretty much separately. When you finish you know you've been working hard.

Technical Note:

The background of this painting was done with Maggie Price's pastel set of "Essential Grays." It was the first time I had used them, and what a treat it was! There are six shades of grays - tan, blue, purple, brown, gray and tan. Each color has five different values. The colors are perfect for creating a neutral area to showcase the other areas of color. In the above photo you can see I scumbled a little gold and orange into the mix to carry the colors of the roses throughout the piece.

Thank you to all those that contacted me on my blog or by email regarding my last post about finding ways to lay down oil paint so that it flows smoothly. One response that came in by email suggested to use a small amount of linseed oil to wipe on the surface of the canvas or canvas board  before paint is applied. It makes absolute sense to me since you will be applying oil paint on top of it. Am anxious to try it.
 

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Early Risers 6" X 8" Oil on linen panel

                                                                              

To me, daffodils have always represented the beginning of Spring and all things "bright and beautiful." I grew up in Washington State where many daffodils and tulips are grown and harvested. It was a family tradition to load the car with family and drive to La Conner and other cities where the farms were. They never disappointed. Rows and rows of flowers at their prime in many shades. There was always a Daffodil Parade in the Spring to celebrate the flowers.

Technical Notes:

I've been trying to work out a problem I have with painting in oils for some time. It has to do with the application of paint onto the canvas or panel. This doesn't seem to be a problem for many artist judging by studying their work posted on blogs and online galleries. Often, for me, the paint hits only the top of the fabric (linen or canvas) and leaves a rather ragged appearance which I end up re-brushing until the surface is covered sufficiently.

It seems to me the problem is either I don't have enough paint on my brush or I need to use the right amount of medium mixed with it. I also thought it could be the brushstrokes I make or the use of the wrong brush for the job.

The problem is reduced when I use gessoed panels, but when I use canvas or linen it occurs frequently. I have added Liquin recently to my paint, and it has helped. I do feel brushwork is an area on which I need to focus. I love the oil works of Terry Miura, Barbara Newton, Andre Kohn, Nancy Franke, Lorraine Shirkus, Cathleen Rehfeld,  Jean Ranstrom, Kim English, Robin Weiss and soooo many others I cannot list here to give you an idea of what I'm after.

I do understand that my level of accomplishment is far beneath what these artists and others can do. But, I would like to zero in on whatever it is that would help me produce a more determined, confident look in brushwork. If you are aware of resources (books, tutorials, articles, etc.) out there I'd appreciate knowing it.

Have a great week, and thanks for "listening."



Wednesday, July 10, 2013

In the Spotlight 6" X 8" Pastel

                                                                              
I really enjoyed working on these grapes. I used my favorite surface of Wallis paper. For quite a while Wallis was hard to purchase. The company was having some difficulty with suppliers, as I understand, but it looks now as if things are well. I'm glad as it is my "Wonder Paper." It accepts so much pastel, has a great texture, accepts water-based paint like watercolor or acrylic for under-paintings and is forgiving when it comes to making changes.

Click here to go to the auction site.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Plenty of Sunshine 6" X 12" Pastel on Pastelbord

                                                                     
      
It's funny to me how a smaller painting can sometimes take longer to complete than a larger one. I'm sure the subject matter factors into it, and the medium you're using and the ease or difficulty of the different stages. This sunflower painting seemed to take such a long time.

Do you remember that scene in the "Amadeus" movie after the Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II listened to one of Mozart's operas that was somewhat long? He'd been yawning while Mozart conducted the piece, and when Mozart asked  the emperor how he liked the opera, the emperor replied, "Too many notes, Mozart. Too many notes! Just cut out a few, and it will be fine."

With my painting I thought a similar thing only about sunflower petals. "Too many petals. Carol. Too many petals!" I didn't cut out any though. Nor did Mozart cut out any notes.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Agave Shadows 8" X 10" Oil on pastelbord SOLD

                                                                             
I've always loved the color combinations found in nature here in the southwestern states particularly the oranges and blues.

I painted this in oil on Pastelbord which I usually save for pastel work. But, the description of the product says it can be used with oils, and part of the surface mixture is created with gesso, so why not try it?!
I like the slightly rough appearance it has as opposed to  a smooth wood panel, and the oils readily cling to the surface and cover it nicely. The only downside is that the sanded surface is hard on brushes, so I tried to stick with my older bristle brushes as much as possible.

This painting is up for auction at Daily Paintworks here .

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

A Touch of Yellow 8" X 8" Oil on panel SOLD

                                                                                
I love these flowers with their little "knobs" in the middle. They grow everywhere in all kinds of climate zones, or at least a version of them. I've seen them in the desert, the mountains, the plains and of course, in bouquets. They're always so cheery, don't you think?

Up for auction at Daily Paintworks.     Click here.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

From the Terrace 8" X 8" oil on canvasboard

                                                                                  

One of the delights of this area is the many varieties of birds who live here or travel here seasonally. This little guy lives around the corner from us - one of many kinds of Flickers. I called these birds woodpeckers for the longest time because they are very much alike in appearance and habits. Both kinds will peck out a section of a Saguaro cactus and build a nest inside the hole for their eggs. When they're finished with it, the starlings arrive and take it over. Sort of like a vacation rental. Seems to work well!

This painting is available at auction at this link. Click here.