Red Winter Berries

This painting “Red Winter Berries” with twigs is the first recent oil painting I have been able to finish in one day. I am inspired by the daily painting movement, but never want to let a painting be finished because I can see too many imperfections I want to fix. I am not sure why I fixate on perfection because I don’t actually like perfect paintings on my own wall. I repeatedly reminded myself of this fact at the end of the day when I could call it “Red Winter Berries” finished or go back a few days later and work on it more.

I didn’t realize that because of the yellow ochre underwash, I would get the look of an Instagram filter on the whole painting. That was a happy accident and fun effect. Now I wonder how the same painting would look with a blue underwash.

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Mel Paints Her Boy

Melanie loves painting her children and she paints her son’s smile with ice cream all over his chin. This time lapse video shows her process while she explains her methods and thoughts. This portrait gives the artist a chance to practice painting flesh tones and is made easier with a tracing method she uses instead of drawing. Her methods can be used with acrylic paint as well.

Mel’s Impressionism, Videos, and an Abstract

Mel’s second attempt at painting impressionism (above) focuses on a landscape with clouds, sagebrush, and juniper in this time lapse video with and some commentary.  Mel loves impressionism and landscapes and rigged a clever set-up to create this video by hanging a clear plastic container from her ceiling with pink ribbons that will hold her iphone and record her painting. She though other beginners would enjoy watching the color mixing process since she does it all at once in the beginning.


I have been meaning to photograph and post the above image for a long time. It is the first abstract painting I did while trying to save paint from getting tossed.  The paint is so thick, that it has taken months and months to dry.  It’s fun and ultra-3D.

I also made a video this week.  It continues my little series of videos that constitutes the in-depth book review of Richard Schmid’s “Alla Prima II”  The video I did on the first chapter is so far the best preforming video on our little channel.  I thought it might be since, years ago, I did a terrible video showing an exercise from the book and without doing anything to promote the low-quality, boring video, it has gotten over 100 views over time.  People love this art book.  When I was going to purchase my copy, I looked for it used on Amazon and could not find a used copy cheaper than a new copy.  That tells me that people buy this expensive book and don’t end up wanting to sell it after reading it.

Chapter 2 is mostly about painting what you see and brush stroke strategy with a little art history built in. This video includes images from master painters such as Zorn, Sargent, Henri, Serov, and Twachtmann for brush stroke examples. It also touches on Chiaroscuro painting as a historical style developed by Michelangelo.

Painting to Connect

While visiting family for the holidays, I saw my nephew, Trevor, had some artwork on the wall that reminded me of abstract art I had in my “favorite art” Pinterest board. I wondered if I could use the outline of Trevor’s drawing as a guide for painting an abstract piece of art that I liked.

Also, because of physical limitations, it is sometimes difficult to find ways to connect with people.  This seemed like a fantastic way to connect with little Trevor, though he may be too young to appreciate it now.

I learned a lot from the exercise and actually and literally dreamed of filling abstract shapes with straight lines of colored paint. I tried to replicate my dream’s inspiration in one of the shapes on this video (blue and yellow square with the yellow getting darker from one end to the other). After completing the painting, I concluded that if a beginner loves abstract work and wants to learn to paint, this is a perfect area to start. What I did here could be done with oil or acrylic and it occurs to me that if you are missing colors or art supplies, you don’t have to be held back if painting abstract.

Richard Schmid’s “Alla Prima II” in Depth Book Review

I have this amazing book, “Alla Prima II” by the brilliant artist, Richard Schmid.  I sped through it once telling myself I would read it again after I had finished it.  That didn’t happen because I got busy painting and reading other art books.  Because this is an expensive art book (over $100), I thought that YouTube video watchers my appreciate an in depth book review and that would get me reading it again as well.  My plan is to break down each chapter and make a video about my favorite highlights once I have re-read the chapter and include paintings from that chapter in the video.  This is fun for me because it seems like I am not having to read alone.  Anyway, for the first chapter, I did it in two parts, and I made a little playlist for these videos to collect on the ole YouTube channel, but I will post them here too.

Finishing the Painting of a Woman’s Profile

This is part 3, so I am mostly done, but doing a few finishing touches.  This video represents the last hour of a 4 hour painting.  That is my record to date, which is exciting, but I also didn’t love the results.  The color of her skin is not right.  I wish I had leaned rosey instead of yellow-green, but I wanted to move quickly and clip along finishing a painting every two weeks.

Something new I tried with the video was time lapse.  Most of this video is sped up to 4x speed with most the pauses edited out.  I don’t have the audio quite perfected because I am still experimenting with ways to record and how they end up sounding.  Ah well, such is the learning curve.

#oilpainting #timelapse #flowersinherhair #paintingdemo

Art Journal

I am trying out a new way of doing the videos.  Instead of only offering videos with the painting from beginning to end, this format has other little segments that are more personalized.  For example, the latest shows an exercise in analyzing art. I like to read art books and was thinking about sharing favorite parts in future segments.  Once I finish a painting, it wouldn’t be difficult to compile all the painting tutorials into one video either.

Also, I am trying out having obsessive days where one day I allow myself to obsess about painting and art and the next day, I am not allowed to do anything with painting or art.  This is helping me to maintain balance and is good for me so far.