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!


Monday, January 30, 2017

Day 30: Elements #30: Skuld

"Elements #30: Skuld", 5"x7", oil on panel, © R.L. Delight

This the third companion to the earlier paintings of "Urd", and "Verdani". I added a couple of colors to my usual palette for this painting. My usual palette these days consists of Gamblin's Transparent Earth Red, Hansa Yellow Light, Hansa Yellow Deep, Ultramarine Blue, and Rembrant's Permanent Red Deep. I added Phalo Turquoise (Gamblin)  and Permanent Rose (Windsor and Newton) for this painting.These little paintings are just rough ideas and all are elements for larger paintings.

Tomorrow is the final day in the challenge. The end of a turbulent month with more yet to come. I am hoping I will be able to get outside to paint. We have another weather alert about a weather system coming in on Wednesday with more cold and wet. It looks like Wednesday will be a good day to begin catching up on housecleaning!


Sunday, January 29, 2017

Day 29: Stone Elephant

"Stone Elephant", 7"x5", oil on panel, © 2017 R.L. Delight

Second post of the day but I didn't want to forget again! I am feeling much better but I do tire easy. I can see from my photo that I need to go back and tweak some edges. I will do that later. I have had this little stone elephant for 30 years or so and it is a favorite of mine. There are no politics implied or intended in any way in this painting. Given the state of our country, I felt the need to state that.

I can see the light at the end of the challenge tunnel! I am committed to painting through the 31st so there are two more paintings for me. I am looking forward to getting back to some deeper studies, being able to take my time on a painting, starting a rather ambitious painting project, to be announced in a future post, giving my house a thorough cleaning, and getting started on putting in a garden. Spring is around the corner!

I will keep this post short since it is the second post of the day.


Day 28: Wave Study Play

"Wave Study Play", 5"x7", oil on panel, studio, © R.L. Delight
Once again, while this did get posted on Facebook yesterday,  I forgot to make a blog post. I am very thankful to be feeling a lot better today. I decided to make another painting study from a sketch. I spent a lot of time pushing and pulling, working with new techniques and trying out "what ifs". That is what challenges are all about aren't they?

I am keeping this one short. Hopefully I will remember to post Day 29 today as well! It is still under construction at the moment.


Saturday, January 28, 2017

Day 27: Wave Study #98?

 Wave Study #98?, oil on canvas, 6"x8", © R.L. Delight

Whoops! I forgot to post to my blog yesterday. I am feeling a bit better today, at least the fever seems to be gone. The sun was out yesterday and it felt warm in the sunshine. I decided to go sit on the beach and sketch a wave study. I knew I didn't have the stamina for painting on the beach but at least I could sketch. I brought my sketch back home and made a painting from my notes. I use Strathmore's toned gray sketch pads and water-soluble graphite when I go wave sketching. Most of the time I also use white gouache for the breaker part of the wave. That gives me the structure and architecture of what is happening out in the waves. I also jotted down color notes. I don't usually do that but I knew I would be painting from the sketch so I made sure I had enough information to do that.

The waves were chaotic, which are my favorite waves to paint. They can be quite challenging. This time I noticed there would be a pop of this deep green color every once in a while. I was intrigued by it so put it into my sketch. The spot of deep green on the wave was a section that was concave for whatever reason (hidden rock, sand hole?). The angle of the sun hitting the part of the wave surrounding the concavity meant the area was not getting any light. It was interesting to watch. I don't think I quite captured it like I was seeing it but it is very hard for me to focus while under the influence of fever. I will watch for it in the future when I am feeling better.

Finally, I am experimenting with a new paint medium and technique. Trying for transparent effects. I used it in the sky and would like to try it in the waves themselves as well. When trying a new technique there is always this awkward messy period. Not something I would usually do publicly but I didn't want to wait for the challenge to be over. Almost there, four more days!


Thursday, January 26, 2017

Day 26: Remedy for the Fever

 Remedy for the Fever, 5"x5", oil on panel, © R.L. Delight

This is what it looks like when I am painting under the influence of fever and chills. Not Pretty! I actually spent a couple of hours on this, mainly trying to get the ginger (the blob in the bowl thingy) to not look like something the dog leaves on your lawn. Oh, the greenish bit is a squozen lime. We have been downing ginger and lime juice among other things.

Bob popped in a couple of times to check on me when he would hear me break out into a feverish laugh. For some reason I decided it would be OK to experiment while I was at it. One is reckless when ill. No, normally I wouldn't paint in this condition but we are so close to the end of this thing I am not stopping now!
Off to crawl into bed,

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Day 25: Elements #25, Wood, Glass, Metal

 Elements #25, 5"x7", oil on panel, © 2017 R.L. Delight

I had a fun time playing with textures with this little painting. I have to admit, at first I was a bit disappointed to be stuck in the studio this month. I knew it would be a good chance to work on my skills at a more leisurely pace but I still yearned to be outside painting. I still would rather be outside but I am really glad I have had this time in the studio and a chance to work out some ideas and techniques through still life painting. It has also served to remind me how all these skills are connected. I can't wait to take some of the insights I have gained out into the field.

I am cooking up a rather ambitious project for which I am doing a lot of preliminary research at the moment. I will be posting about this project in a couple of weeks!


Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Day 24: Ebb Tide on Young's Bay

Day 24: Ebb Tide on Youngs Bay, 5"x7", oil on panel, studio, ©2017 R.L. Delight

I had to spend most of the day up the coast in Astoria today. I had planned to hit the studio right after dinner and paint another still life but, as I was driving across the Young's Bay bridge I saw this view. I decided to try something new to me.  I pulled over as soon as I could and did a quick sketch with notes. I painted this in the studio from the notes and memory. Not the best painting technique-wise but it does capture the light and atmosphere of what I saw.
Young's Bay is connected to the mighty Columbia River. The bridge goes over the bay close to where it meets the river. The area has a lot of wonderful estuary life. I plan to get up there with my easel this year and get a few plein air paintings made.

Getting close to the end of the challenge!


Monday, January 23, 2017

Day 23: "Home"-Plein Air

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

I almost forgot to post this! Today was such a beautiful day. It was the first day I have been able to get out in a couple of weeks. It felt so wonderful! I didn't go far, just up to the overlooks off of Hwy. 101 at Neahkahnie. The light was very very tricky but it was a good challenge. The waves were stunning! There was a light breeze which made it a bit on the chilly side but I had enough layers on to stay warm enough.

I am off to bed. We shall see what the weather brings tomorrow.


Sunday, January 22, 2017

Day 22: Elements #22: Verdandi

"Verdandi", 5"x7", oil on panel, © 2017 R.L. Delight

This is the second of three studies I plan to do for a future painting. Some of you may see where this is going!
The weather was dramatic today with thunder, hail, torrential rain, and rainbows. A good day to be off the beach and headlands and tucked into a cozy studio. Only nine more days, nine more paintings. I am still hoping I will be able to get at least one or two plein air paintings in, weather permitting.
I do have a plan to put into action when this challenge is finished. I am getting excited and will be posting about it soon.


Saturday, January 21, 2017

Day 21: Elements #21: Urd

"Urd", 5"x7", oil on panel, © 2017 R.L. Delight

This is a study of an element for a painting that has been on my mind for quite a while. In case someone is wondering, this is a drop spindle. I have intentionally put it upside down in the study. The spindle is mine, one of three that I have. I love to spin fiber although time has not allowed me the pleasure for quite sometime now. I hope to remedy that in the coming months.
A short post this evening as it has been a busy day.


Friday, January 20, 2017

Day 20: Spring Dreaming

Spring Dreaming, 5"x7", oil on panel, © R.L. Delight

I thought about calling this one "Only Kale can Save Us Now" after one of my favorite sticker/T-shirt sayings but decided to go with my original intent. I painted another simple painting for today as I have a musical event to attend this evening. I am looking forward to having the pressure of painting a daily painting off. I will still be painting daily but on larger works in addition to drawing. I also have a lot of experimenting to do. I am also going to have to do something with all the little paintings piling up in the studio! I am not complaining about that but will be firing up my Daily Paintworks site very soon!


Thursday, January 19, 2017

Day 19: Elements #19: Polished Granite, Shell

Elements #19: Polished Granite, Shell, 5"x7", oil on panel, © 2017  R.L. Delight

Painting this brought surprising insights today. This was a simpler painting but it wasn't an easy painting for me to do. I struggled with it and felt I didn't quite hit the mark I was aiming for. This one, more than any other so far this month, really tempted me to wipe it off. Fortunately, I know better than to do that. Even so, I reluctantly posted it on my Facebook page.

Sometimes I can be humbled by my own work. Not because I think it is a particularly fine piece, but that it touches someone else in an unexpected way. Isn't that what it is all about on some level? A person takes time to comment on how much they like a piece. That brings up the emotions in me of gratitude, awe, wonder, and the feeling of "humbleness". I know I am groping here, trying to express something that is deeply personal and hard to articulate, but I feel that this painting has given me an insight and that is a significant step along my journey of being an artist. 

Even though I was personally disappointed that I didn't achieve what I was attempting to accomplish in this little painting, I did try my best in the time I had been given. I did paint it with great interest and joy in the process as well as the subject and I did learn. Perhaps that gets into even the most frustrating of paintings. I don't really know but I do know that something has been changed for me. I will have to think about it...


Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Day 18: Drop Forged

"Drop Forged", 5"x7"oil on panel, © R.L. Delight

I forgot I was going to paint something simpler for today's painting. I have been wanting to paint a study of this pipe wrench for a while. I have a painting in mind that I want to have a pipe wrench in. I spotted this on the still life prop shelf today and thought it would be a good time to take a stab at painting it. I enjoyed it tremendously but next time I plan to take more time. 

The storms continue with howling winds and rain lashing the windows. So far our power has only blinked and is still on. Grateful for that. I have been going through the seed catalogs and dreaming of spring! On to the next day...


Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Day 17: Elements #17: Driftwood, Seaweed, Glass

Elements #17: Driftwood, Seaweed, Glass, 8"x10", oil on canvas panel, © R.L. Delight

Experimenting and Learning isn't always pretty! I do love the organic, sensual forms of driftwood and seaweed. I can't seem to resist collecting or painting them. I did a lot of pushing of my skills and thoughts on this one. It didn't quite work the way I had hoped but I am going to put this aside for a while and come back to it. I think I can get it closer to what I had in mind at a later date.

A big wind and rain storm has been battering the coast all day. The house shudders and roars when the wind slams into it. Lots of rain and they are predicting that the rivers will be going over flood stage tomorrow. Should be an interesting day. Thankful the power has held so far...


Monday, January 16, 2017

Elements #16: Glass, Stone, Wood

Elements #16: Glass, Stone, Wood, 5"x7", oil on panel, © R.L. Delight

The storm warnings have been coming fast and furious. They are calling for everything from ice and wind storms to major flooding on the river below us. We spent the first half of the day getting everything stocked up and battened down. I got a bit of a later start on today's painting but still managed to get it done. Sometimes the time pressure is a good kick in the pants to not linger too much over details.

Every once in a while I like to pull this ship's light bulb out to paint. I found it on the beach the first year we moved here. It still has sea water in it. Today we are over half way through the challenge! I feel like I am just getting warmed up. One of the lovely things that has been happening is the ideas for paintings that keep popping into my head as I work. I have a notebook handy to jot them down. After this month's challenge I will be working out some of the ideas for paintings and working on larger paintings too. I won't be doing a painting a day but I will be painting everyday along with drawing and study. I am looking forward to it!

Here is the studio shot:

Hoping the power holds and our community stays safe with the wild weather heading our way starting tomorrow!


Sunday, January 15, 2017

Day 15: Elements #15: Wood and Stone

Elements #15: Wood and Stone, 5"x7", oil on panel, © R.L. Delight

We spent most of the day catching up on domestic duties and beginning to get prepared for the growing potential of a deluge of rain. Should be interesting around here if the totals they are predicting play out, on top of snow melt. Tomorrow we will need to make a grocery and errand run up north before the floods hit. 

I deliberately chose fairly neutral objects to paint today. I am really beginning to enjoy turning the studio time into challenges to improve my skills. Today I focused on color, texture, and value. I am still experimenting with color temperature as well but didn't focus on it as much in this painting. Painting the "elements" of what I find when I am painting outside has been helpful for me too. Often when painting outside, the light is changing so fast I don't have time to slow down and experiment.

Off to finish up the chores and get ready for tomorrow. A parting shot of the set-up:


Saturday, January 14, 2017

Day 14: Breathing Space

Breathing Space, 5"x7", oil on panel, © 2017 R.L. Delight

Today was one of those time crunch days. Grocery shopping in the morning, painting as fast as I can, then a quick dinner and out to a community event. As much as my introverted soul loves being alone in the studio or out painting on the beach (usually up on the rocks behind a driftwood pile), I feel it is also important to participate now and then in my community.

This is more or less finished but I know that I will be refining a few things. The waves behind are still sort of roughed in. As I was looking at the painting after I returned home this evening, I thought I would make a few other changes as well.
This painting is partly from a still life set up and partly from imagination. The idea for this came to me while struggling with yesterday's subject. It is a start on an idea I have had for a while.

It is late for me and I need to go rest for tomorrow. I close with a picture of the still life set up.
Hope you enjoy a breathing space of your own!


Friday, January 13, 2017

Elements #13: Wood, Cloth, Metal, String

Elements #13: Wood, Cloth, Metal, String, 7"x5", oil on gessobord, © R.L. Delight

Today started out promising. The sun was shining, winds calm. I decided to get out and paint again. I put on my 6 toasty layers, grabbed my gear and headed out the door. I decided to go to nearby Nehalem Bay State Park. When I got to the park, the sun had disappeared, and a stiff breeze had sprung up which was coming right off the water. The cold, damp cut right to the bone and made my chest hurt. I decided to head back to the studio. With time running out, I decided to try my hand at painting this simple model boat. Well, I can tell my heart wasn't in it even though I did try my best. The good thing that came out of it all was an idea for the next painting. That is always a good thing!

Off for another cup of hot tea!


Thursday, January 12, 2017

Day 12: Elements #12: Waves

Elements #12: Waves, plein air, 8"x10", oil on canvas, © 2017 R.L. Delight

Winter on the Northern Oregon Coast is often cold, damp, and gray, however, when the sun is out it is stunning. Today was one of those days. The sun this time of the year is low in the sky and the light becomes pearlescent. I spent a beautiful afternoon painting waves on the beach in the afternoon sun. I was nice a toasty in my six layers of clothing! The tide was going out and the waves just sparkled.

I am experimenting and changing things up to push my knowledge along. I used a few things I have been trying out on all those studio pieces in this plein air painting.

I need to try it again and push it again, and re-evaluate. This month I am focused mostly on just getting back to regular painting. Next month, with these challenges finished, I plan to go deeper. It is also time to work on a body of work I have been thinking about for a while now.
Next month the garden starts up again and the house renovation continues little by little. The band I am part of is recording our third album! Life is busy but I continue to paint and draw...


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Day 11: Afternoon Light on Neahkahnie

Afternoon Light on Neahkahnie, 6"x8", plein air, oil on canvas panel, © 2017 R.L. Delight

We awoke this morning to...more snow! We aren't getting anything near the snow totals the rest of Oregon is but our roads on the coast can be hazardous on a good day, let alone adding snow and ice, in addition to the king tides washing over the highways. I had resigned myself to painting another still life when the sun came out and the snow quickly melted. I had a strong urge to get out of the studio and go paint. It is still cold though, and the wind off the ocean brings a lot of moisture. Combine the two and you have a recipe for hypothermia. I decided to paint from the car and drove down to my home beach. The sky and clouds were stunning and Neahkahnie Mountain would glow for a few seconds when the sun came out.

I rarely work from the car, in fact, it has been a few years and we have a new car. I brought towels to cover everything up and I decided to use a solvent free gel instead of terps. I have used the gel before. I struggled with being in the car. I felt cramped and I kept getting paint on the areas I couldn't cover. The gel seemed to melt everything together so I know I was probably using too much. The canvas seemed particularly hard to get paint to stick and the paint felt stiff and unresponsive. In spite of all of that, and after a few swear words were uttered, I managed to get this painting. Not my best or favorite but I have enough information to make a proper painting of it if I choose to. It felt good to get out of the studio and paint plein air again.

We shall see what tomorrow's weather will bring...


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Day 10: Elements #10: Wood, Clay, Feather

Elements #10: Wood, Clay, Feather, 5"x7", oil on panel, © 2017 R.L. Delight

It is late and I need to get to bed so this will be a short post! I experimented with several different elements in this painting. Probably not the best idea as it can get overwhelming. In spite of running out of time and energy, I am having a lot of fun pushing my comfort zone. I will say that this is definitely not my style. It feels way to fussy and overblown for my tastes. I did enjoy getting all the lovely colors in the Lusterware teapot. The photo doesn't really do it justice.

All that being said, I am learning a lot, which is the whole point of doing these studies this month. We have another Winter storm warning for tomorrow so it looks like I will be in the studio again.

Stay warm!

Monday, January 9, 2017

Day 9: Elements # 9: Wood, Glass, Stone

Elements #9: Wood, Glass, Stone, 5"x7", oil on gessobord, @ 2017 R.L. Delight

We woke to big fluffy snowflakes thudding to the ground this morning followed by hail and then torrential rain. I decided another day in the studio sounded just fine after all!

I have been reading A History of American Tonalism: 1880-1920,  by David A. Cleveland. It is a huge and heavy tome of a book. I periodically check it out from our local library. I have to use a lap table to hold it while I read and I have yet to make it through before having to return it. I always learn something new though. My favorite tonalists are the Harrison brothers, Alexander and Birge. I particularly like Birge Harrison's work.

Today I was inspired by a painting by Emil Carlsen. I decided to try out a few ideas and techniques on this little still life painting. I didn't quite hit what I was after but I like the direction it is taking me. I will keep working at it.

I will admit I have a reason for spending the time indoors working on the Elements line of still life paintings. They contain elements of the objects I like to paint plein air. The glass is standing in for the water. I am finding that I am learning a lot by being able to slow down and really study both the objects and techniques. I am looking forward to applying what I am learning out in the field.

What paintings inspire you?


Sunday, January 8, 2017

Elements #8: Seaweed, Wood, Iron

Elements #8: Seaweed, Wood, Iron, 5"x7", studio,oil on gessobord, R.L. Delight

Today was spent in the other part of my creative life, music. My mate and I spent the day with our bandmates recording our next CD! I did this quick painting before we left to meet my challenge requirements. It was good to get it done.

The rain has returned and no more ice! As much as I have been enjoying painting these still lifes, I am ready to head out somewhere to paint en plein air. We shall see what the weather holds tomorrow.


Saturday, January 7, 2017

Day 7: Elements #7: Wood, Seaweed, Glass

Elements #7: Wood, Seaweed, Glass, 6"x6", studio, oil on panel, © 2017 R.L. Delight

I started this the first day of the challenge. I decided I wanted to be able to put more time into it so I worked on it after painting the daily challenge painting. Today I figured it was close enough to being finished so I finished it up for today's painting. I really enjoy the sensuous beauty of driftwood. I have a hard time resisting putting it into my paintings. I also love the organic curves of the dried seaweed. Painting glass is a lot of fun as well. I had a good time painting this one!

Here is a studio shot:

This is my still life corner. I have an old trunk and a treadle sewing machine set up for my surfaces. Both are up on a stage to bring the height up closer to my eye level. I have had the set up for this painting on the trunk since the first of the month. I will be happy to be able to take it down now and move on.

The Pacific Northwest has been very cold. Too cold to go out painting. I had many layers on the last time I went out and I got colder than I should have with the wind chill next to the water. Thankfully the ice will be turning to rain soon. I am having fun with still life but would like to get back out to do a bit of plein air painting. I am looking forward to it!


Friday, January 6, 2017

Day 6: Elements # 6: Stone and Shell

Elements #6: Stone and Shell, 5"x6", studio, oil on gessobord, ©2017 R.L. Delight

This set up was a bit simpler than yesterday's. I must admit, I am enjoying painting these still life paintings. I don't consider myself a still life painter as I much prefer to be painting plein air but it is a nice change of pace. Since I am doing a challenge and want to paint from life, I am working on the still life. I also want to make a few larger paintings with my plein air studies as reference. I will have to wait on that until next month.

I have been using 5"x7" gessobord to paint on. I have a lot of them that I purchased quite a while ago. I thought this would be a good way to use them up. I decided that, if I felt it were needed, I would crop the paintings. This gives me a little room to experiment. I decided to crop this one about an inch to give it a better composition.

At the moment, I am using a limited palette of Transparent Earth Red, Permanent Red Deep, Hansa Yellow Light, Hansa Yellow Deep and Ultramarine Blue. I am using Gamblin's Radiant White for my white at the moment. Not my usual white but I thought I would experiment.

This set up was a bit precarious. Everytime I walked by the shell would wobble and threaten to fall off the top. Here is a picture of the set up in the background. The lighting for the pictures isn't the best. I need to work on my studio lighting this year. I am still unpacking too but I have enough room and light to work!

Off to rest up for tomorrow!

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Day 5: Elements #5: Stone, Iron, Bronze

"Elements #5: Stone, Iron, Bronze", 7"x5", studio, oil on gessobord, © 2017, R.L. Delight

Another late post in haste. I thought I would do a simpler painting today. Turns out I miscalculated on that! This took me a while but I got it done. It has been so cold out that I haven't been able to get outside to paint en plein air. I am getting a bit restless but I am also enjoying slowing down and taking my time in the studio. I decided to paint "elements" of the usual subjects one finds out of doors. It has been interesting so far but still have many more days to go this month.

A parting shot:

Until tomorrow,

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Day 4: Elements #4: Wood, Metal, Feather

"Elements #4: Wood, Metal, Feather", studio, 5"x6", oil on panel, © 2017, R.L. Delight

Still too cold to be out painting or drawing so I was back in the studio today. I am trying to work through a few ideas for larger paintings. This one was a challenge today. I struggled for quite a bit and finally got it to where it will at least give me a place to start. Some days are like that. It was a good learning experience! Short post today. I am off to clean my brushes and get ready for tomorrow. 


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Elements #3: Seaweed, Stone, Shell, Wood

Elements #3: Seaweed, Stone, Shell, and Wood, 5"x6", Studio, oil on panel. © 2017 R.L. Delight

I wisely decided to stay warm in the studio today. We are simply not used to these bitter cold temps. We have a very damp freezing cold here, the kind that goes straight to the bones and makes them ache. The wind is coming from the east, the snowy coastal range behind us, and collides with the moist air coming off the sea. So it was a still life set up for me today. I have two other ongoing still life set ups in my studio at the moment so I set it up on the only space I have left. Unfortunately, I discovered the hard way that the monkey puzzle tree that all but obscures the south facing window does weird things to the light. I got a bit confused as the time went by. I have only been in my new studio for a month. I need a year of tracking the sun to learn the nuances of the natural light coming in the window. Lesson learned!

I enjoy collecting materials from the beach. I have always been attracted to rocks and bits of twigs, leaves, and pretty much anything else that nature provides. Those of you who are collectors of this type know what I mean. I was born that way. I don't remember a time when I didn't collect this stuff. Every place in the house I sit has a bowl of rocks or bits of driftwood by it. Now I get to do something even more enjoyable with the material, I get to paint it!

It is a fun challenge to portray the sensuous beauty that I see in each piece. The 30 in 30 challenge is a perfect excuse to focus on this, hence the "Elements" line. Here on the coast, the waves carve caves into the cliffs, and the water that runs to the sea cascades to the sand and rock of the beach and into the waves. When storm waves have scoured the sands out of the caves I often find these holey rocks. I love them and can't resist taking a few home. Bits of dried seaweed twist into interesting shapes where they are left behind on the high tides. I am fascinated with the organic curves and puzzles they contort into. Over the years I have found a lot of whole sand dollar shells here too. I limit my collection of those but they are fun to paint and I enjoy the way the smooth shells feel. I propped these up on two big pieces of driftwood and painting this composition. 

I need to get my digital SLR camera back up and running. Cell phones have amazing cameras these days but the subtle colors I painted in the shell and the textures are lost in the photo. I will have to work on that...

What is your favorite thing to collect?


Monday, January 2, 2017

Day 2: Elements #2: Whale Bone

I have had a long wait to get back to my favorite spot to paint, Short Sands Beach, aka "Shorty", otherwise known as Smuggler's Cove. As I posted on my Facebook post, there is a golden piece of my heart that lives here. Several months ago a dead whale washed ashore. As it was toward the end of the tourist season, they decided to let the body remain for nature to do as it will. This is in Oswald West State Park after all.  From the time we bought our house last spring until now I have not been able to get there to paint. I knew I wanted to sketch and paint the whale skeleton. All that is left is this part of the skull.

It was bitterly cold on the beach today. Temps about 34 degrees with a wicked north wind coming off the water to bring the chill factor down to 25 degrees. I had several layers on but if you ever stood in one spot for a couple of hours you know how cold a person to get. In the end I was shivering so hard I could hardly hold the brush. My paints became stiff from the cold and gritty from wind blown sand. The oil sketch is a bit rough but I decided to call it good for the day. A few stray snow flakes began to fall as I hiked out. I got home, still shivering from the cold, and administered hot shower, hot food, and hot drink in that order. I am finally warm.

It has been a good painting day. I want to get back soon, when a tad bit warmer, and make a detailed drawing. Here is a final closeup on site of the painting:

"Elements#2: Whale Skull", 8"x10", plein air, oil on canvas, © 2017 R.L. Delight

What is the most unusual thing you have painted, drew, or otherwise experienced?


Sunday, January 1, 2017

Day 1: Elements #1: Clouds

"Elements #1: Clouds, plein air, 5"x7", oil on gessobord, © 2017, R.L. Delight
First plein air and first dropped painting of the new year!

First I would like to wish all a Happy New Year! 

I have neglected to post and share what I have been up to, both in and out of the studio, for quite a while. There are times when life takes off like a spooked horse and you have to drop everything to chase it down or coax it back. Without adding a long story to this post, I will just say that 2017 finds us settling into our new house. Emergencies are sleeping at the moment and progress is slowly being made to rectify the neglect the house had seen over the years.

This past year has taught me to be relentless. I have learned the painful lesson of being relentless about getting enough rest, eating a very specialized diet, without fail, and getting daily exercise. I am still on the path to good health but I have spent the past year battling to improve and can honestly say I have been successful. I will have to be relentless about it for the rest of my life but shouldn't we all be?

I am learning to be relentless in my art and music. Daily practice has become my lifestyle and a privilege. I am sure there will be interruptions but I am striving with every fiber of my being to get in a daily practice no matter what, even if the house decides to spring another emergency surprise or there seems to be no time!

I have big and little goals to strive for this year. The plein air painting will continue but there will also be more studio paintings and, finally, I am turning my attention to getting a body of work done for the year.  So, I will end with a painting I finished toward the tail end of 2016. I really enjoyed painting "Cara Cara" as Cara Cara oranges are my favorite snack. They are delicious and beautiful!

Where in life are you relentless?

"Cara Cara", studio, 6"x6", oil on gessobord. © 2017, R.L. Delight
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