Sunday, November 11, 2018

Plein Air Challenges

Plein Air painting at Cape Lookout, Oregon Coast


It has been a busy day and a busy week so I will be keeping this one short. I finally took a break from my anatomy studies and went out painting. I had a particular spot in mind, only, when I got there, the waves and weather were completely different than what I had pictured in my mind to paint! That is the way it works on the coast. I did remember this other spot from an earlier visit and it did not disappoint. The only problem is, it is by the side of a road. It is a back road, but still, I don't paint along roadsides. This view! I couldn't resist so, in spite of my discomfort, I went for it. I only had about an hour and half of decent light before the sun went down and the sky was cloudy. I got a lucky sunbreak and I got as much information as I could. I will work on this in my studio to finish it.

One thing I didn't take into account is that when people drive by and see an artist painting by the side of the road, they will suddenly pull over and take a look, and then they see the view! I had a crowd behind me as I worked as fast as I could to get the painting down. Usually, I am more sociable when I am out painting but I didn't engage much in conversation as I concentrated on getting this view on canvas.

I am making progress on finding a printing service and am ready to order a few test prints of my drawings. I am still organizing and polishing up the small paintings to post for sale, very soon now.

Today I finished the week with a life drawing session, bottling my hard cider, made from apples grown in the community garden, and set up my home grown sourdough to bake tomorrow. It is a good end for a long week.

This week has been full of tragic news and my heart breaks for the families forever changed by the most recent shooting, and for those who are fleeing the fierce fires here in the west.

It has become even more important to add beauty to the world. May everyone find a bit of beauty in the coming week.

-Renee


Sunday, November 4, 2018

Digging In

Polar Bear Awakening, Ink on toned paper, © 2018 R.L. Delight Fine Art
Inktober week is done and I drew 33 ink drawings in total! This is number 32. I originally drew it as a thank you to all those who followed my progress on social media. I am sharing it here as this is Polar Bear Week! So, what is next?

I have participated in month-long daily challenges before and have always benefited from them in terms of my art. Usually, I just picked up where I left off and continued on. This challenge was different in many ways. First, I had never used ink as a drawing medium. Second, I have only just started drawing animals (not counting my teen years spent drawing animals from magazine photos).  I struggled with drawing in ink for the entire month, however, even I could see the improvement in the handling of the medium day by day.  While I am generally satisfied with my progress, I also recognize that I have a ways to go.

What I hadn't anticipated when I first set out to take on this challenge, was that I would fall so deeply in love with drawing animals and all that goes with it. Taking on animal art, I had to break with my practice of not using photo reference and only drawing from life or imagination. I haven't used photo reference in my art because I just don't resonate with photos like I do with my subjects in real life.
I have spent many days this summer sketching animals at the Oregon Zoo which is a one and a half  to two hour drive, one way, over the coastal range from my house. With a few exceptions, I have used my own video footage, live webcams, and my sketches as reference for these drawings. A couple times I used my own photo reference.

So, now it is time to go deeper. I had already begun to learn animal anatomy before I took on the Inktober challenge. Now I am going back and learning with purpose and determination. I need to have the ability to sketch and draw animals from life and imagination. That is going to take a bit time and a lot of work. Thank goodness we have so many resources these days with online classes and tutorials. Nothing beats working hard and drawing everyday as I continue to do.

I am looking at printing services until I can afford my own quality printer and scanner. I will be selling prints and cards of the best sketches I did and of future finished drawings. I will also be posting small paintings for sale this week. I need to clean out my studio, so the paintings will be at sale prices from now until December 30th. A percentage of the proceeds from every sale will go to environmental and animal protection organizations. Some will be local and some will be national and international.

Well, this is a long post but I wanted to share some of the growth and changes that have been happening in my studio. Thanks for reading this far!

Go find the beauty in this week!

-Renee

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Continuing On


Inktober Day 6: Copic marker, white and black ink on gray-toned paper.

Three more days left for Inktober. This sketch was from day 6, or October 6. While I am still painting waves and landscapes, I have been doing quite a bit of sketching and drawing of the animals in the Oregon Zoo. This year I purchased a yearly pass with this in mind. It all started innocently enough, I needed to learn to draw and paint bears for the album cover for my band's latest CD. I got hooked on drawing animals. Well, that is putting it mildly! I absolutely have fallen in love with drawing animals and will be painting them too.

I last left off this blog with a goal of painting the state parks along the Oregon Coast. That is still ongoing. I have been painting plein air sketches of the state parks nearby. I haven't shared many of those sketches as I plan to use them for reference material for larger paintings to make a series. I also have come to the realization that this project will take years and that is just fine with me!

I have been, and will continue to be, painting small paintings for sale which I will be starting to post in the month of November. I have been getting everything set up to make that an ongoing process. I am excited about these little paintings and hope people will enjoy them.

I have a few more plans which I will be unveiling in future posts. Like most people, I have a very full life and when something unexpected comes up, timelines get messed up and some things have to be put on back burners. While I haven't posted much on my blog this past year, the art, and the study of art, has and will continue.

I will be updating my blog over the next few weeks and will be posting once week on Sunday evenings. The postings will be more frequent when the small paintings are ready to go.

Until next week, may you all find a bit of beauty in your life!

-Renee

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Jumping Back In

Inktober challenge sketch #25
It has been eight months since I last posted on my blog! I am not going to spend a great deal of time chronicling the past eight months but, I will say, it has been very busy. In between working on our 1973 fixer-upper, my garden, music, the community garden, and healing my body, I have quietly been working on art skills. I have had time to think about where I am going in my art and where I want to be. And, I have spent time studying my chosen field.

So, I am back!

While I haven't been too active on my blog, I have been a bit more active on social media, particularly Instagram and Facebook. This month I have been participating in Inktober. You can find my Inktober sketches on my Instagram page, @r.l.delight. I will have to do a bit of updating on my blog and website to link all of this together. In the meantime, today's sketch is above!

The sketch is inked using Copic pen, black ink pen, and a white Gellyroll pen on Strathmore gray-toned paper. I used zoo sketches I have done from life and video I recorded as reference material for the drawing. I will be writing about my thoughts behind my choices to learn to use ink while sketching and why I am adding wildlife art to my body of work. I don't want to make this too lengthy of a post today.

I am getting back to blogging regularly and will be updating my website. Look for paintings that will be available for purchase starting next month! I have some studio cleaning out to do!

Yours in beauty,
-Renee

Sunday, February 26, 2017

The Art of Study



I have been waiting out the wild weather by studying and  gathering supplies and resources to launch my big project. I have had to be patient as the delivery of the art supplies are often delayed due to road closures by weather and landslides. In the meantime I have been slowly making tools to do some serious study in the studio.

I have been inspired by Paul Foxton's Learning to See blog for quite sometime now. He has a wonderful blog on learning a methodical process for art study that is similar to how I was schooled. He is a big advocate and user of the Munsell system of color and I have become quite enthusiastic about it myself. I have dabbled in the method for a few years now but am buckling down and working through it.

The best site for serious study, in addition to Learning to See, is the Rational Painting site by Graydon Parrish. This site requires becoming a member to access it fully and I am grateful to have joined a few years ago. I have not been active due to several major life events but I am now working through it. Graydon and other members  have put in a great deal of time and energy into the exercises and forums. There is several years worth of information and processes to dive into.

I am starting with the Munsell neutrals. I am in the process of making my neutral value scales through precise mixing and matching of the Munsell value scale and am learning quite a bit. The above picture is of a set of value blocks that I have painted and will be using in several exercises. I just received supplies to mix and tube up my own set of Munsell values and will be working on that next.I could go on about this topic for quite a while, however, the two sites I listed above do a far better job than I can at the moment!

Finally, a note for those familiar with the Munsell system, I have purchased The New Munsell Student Color set (I have the 3rd edition) and a Munsell neutral value scale to work with. I am saving up my pennies to purchase the big Munsell Book of Color. It is quite a pricey tool, basically the cost of a good workshop, but I believe it worth the investment. Many of the exercises can be done with the tools I have but going deeper will require the big book.

I am getting close to starting to auction my small paintings and will be announcing the first auction and the links to it very soon! I have also been keeping busy working on our house and getting a new garden in. I am trying to be patient and productive while waiting out the weather so I can get back to painting on the beach and starting up my big project. I love winter but I am looking forward to spring.

-Renee

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Leaping Off The Wild Edge


I am taking a deep breath and officially announcing a major project that I have been dreaming about for the past few years. I am both excited, and nervous. This is a very big project for me. So, here it is:

I will be spending a great deal of time painting every state park, scenic point, recreational site, national preserve, wayside, estuary, wildlife refuge, outstanding natural area, interpretive center/area, and more along the entire Oregon Coast to the WEST  of Hwy. 101!

There, I said it. Just a little project that will probably take me a few years!

So why do I want to do this? Of course, there are several reasons. Oregon has one of the most stunning coastlines on the west coast. Sorry Washington and California, your coastlines are beautiful but this is my humble opinion. I have lived in all three states along the coast so I feel qualified to express this opinion! The idea for this project has been rattling around in my head for a while and has become very important to me. With all the changes our country, world, and planet has been going through, I feel a strong sense of urgency. I will have more to say on this as the project evolves.

Of course, I don't really feel that I am ready but I do feel, very strongly, that now is the time to begin. I would probably never feel like I was ready anyway!

My main guide to start with is the Oregon Coastal Access Guide by Kenn Oberrecht. It is a "Mile-by-Mile Guide to Scenic and Recreational Attractions." It has a lot more than the spots I mentioned above but it pretty much the spots I am interested in. It literally goes from mile post to milepost and includes viewpoints and scenic pullouts. The second book, The Photographer's Guide to the Oregon Coast, list very special scenic places to pay attention too. It is mainly for additional information.

I will have a lot more to blog about as this project unfolds but here is the general outline:

-I will be starting with the areas closest to me of course. That will allow me to work out the logistics with the comfort of home to retreat to.
-I will show/exhibit the paintings completed for the year for as long as the project takes.
-I will be painting plein air studies, drawings, and sketches from life.
-I will create larger studio paintings from the studies.
-There will be a final exhibit when the project is complete.
-A few of the better plein air studies and the studio paintings will be for sale. I am not sure at this point if I will wait until the project is complete and a final exhibit created.

Which brings me to how to fund such a project!

I am not planning to use a crowd funding service such as gofundme. I really do not want to have a deadline and I don't think a project like this would really fit the crowd-funding model. I want to allow this project the breathing space it deserves.I am also all too aware how life events can interrupt such an endeavor such as this one.

To start with, I have decided to take a little time each week to paint small wave paintings, still-life, and landscape paintings to auction on my Daily Paintworks page or my website. There will be links for each painting on this blog and my website. I will also be donating a certain percentage of the proceeds to organizations that support and protect the wild coastline.

This will very much be a work in progress and I will be changing various aspects as needed. I will also be blogging about the project so there will hopefully be an interesting story unfolding as the project continues.

This is a bare outline of the total project. I wanted to get the ball rolling. I will be happy to answer any questions. The only thing I ask is that negativity and discouragement be set aside. This is going to be a challenging enough project as it is and positive encouragement, suggestions, etc. are appreciated.

Finally I do have a working title for the project. If you have read my tagline, it might sound familiar. This project is called:

"Painting the Wild Edge"

I am looking forward to growing and learning as an artist and to exploring and appreciating the beauty of this wild coastline.
I hope you will enjoy following my progress!

-Renee

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Day 31: Arcadia Beach Study

 "Arcadia Beach Study", 8"x10" oil on canvas panel, plein air, ©2017 R.L. Delight

Here is the final painting of the month! This one was a struggle. The light was beautiful but the breeze was a lot colder and a lot more mischievous than I had anticipated. I had to cut this one short for the sake of my health and sanity! I really loved the colors coming out in the rock. The painting shows a lot of the subtle color in real life that doesn't show up so much here.

Thirty one days hath January so 31 paintings. Here is a collage of them all:



A big thank you to all of you who have stopped by to take a look!

-Renee
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