Sunday, April 30, 2017

Vista through the Trees

This lovely vista through the trees is on the west side of Montelle Winery.  Arriving late after a morning broadcast on Great Day St Louis, I was quickly drawn to this place.  I love this side of the winery,  more secluded than the sweeping back side.  The babbling of the koi pond was my companion as I painted these trees,  background first.  Working around all masses negatively gives a very organic feel to all.  I met some of those edges while leaving others hard.  I was so honored to have been awarded an Honorable Mention for this piece at the Montelle Winery Paint Out.  Painting number 1571 in 1571 days. 

Potted Blooms

The rain was really coming down as we reached Frisella's Nursery.  I pulled together a few favorite flowers and started to sketch.  As I worked in the masses,  I tried to keep the visual pathway of darks flowing through the painting.  One of my friends came to visit me as I worked, and the time passed quickly.  Before I knew it,  my painting was finished and it was time to dash off to the next location!  Painting number 1570 in 1570 days :)

Friday, April 28, 2017

Barn in the Mist

My third painting of the day was the annual Balducci's sunset paintout, and true to form,  the whole day had been rainy.  Not just rain either,  thunder and lightning, too!  After adding another layer of clothes and a glass of wine, I was toasty as I painted in the mist.  I've not approached this barn from this angle before,  and it was rather dramatic.  I love to visit with everyone as they walk from easel to easel, and the time flies quickly by.   Before I knew it,  I was finished and turning in my painting.  Tomorrow is the day for turning in work and a celebration for the artists afterward.  I think I'd better get my paintings organized and ready for the sale on Sunday!  Painting number 1569 in 1569 days :)

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Dance of the Vines

Sugar Creek Winery is one of my favorite places to paint!  I picked a spot near the top of the hill to paint the grapevines, choosing beauty over comfort.  It was so very cold up there with a damp wind blowing in from the north!   After drawing my scene in pen and ink,  I blocked out my painting.... and then I moved into the car for warmth!  This scene was so inspiring, I will return again and again to paint it!  Painting number 1568 in 1568 days.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Boone Garden in Ink

The early morning was warm and beautiful, but by the time I finished my run,  the raindrops were starting to fall.  Invigorated from my run,  I couldn't wait to get out and paint!  First up,  the Daniel  Boone farm inn Defiance.  I chose to paint the scene through the garden from the back porch of the home.  I've never painted from here before, and the scene was so alluring!  The bonus was ducking under the porch when it really started raining!  I've been at this for years,  ave I know when to set up close to a shelter!  I enjoyed painting this scene as much as I enjoy time spent in the garden!  Painting number 1567 in 1567 days :)

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Americana in Ink

Today is plein air in New Melle day and this charming, old historic house on Mill Street and Peter is my subject du jour.  I've been trying to draw my paintings out first in ink,  before laying them down in oils.  Adding this process really does help me think through the painting before I have a brush in my hand!  This drawing is number 1566 in 1566 days.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Lazy Day at the Pond

What a beautiful day for the Private Estate paint!  The old farmhouse and barns were high on a peak,  overlooking the river bottom land,  surrounded by rolling hills.  When I saw the way the trees and sky reflected in the water - I had to paint it!  For the best view,  I climbed down an embankment into the tall grass,  trying to avoid the poison ivy as best I could.  I first did a pen and ink pre-sketch, then jumped right to the color.  I didn't even paint my sketch on the panel.  No need,  I had figured out my plan in ink.  I've been doing this since Josh's workshop,  and I think it saves time painting.  I know,  hard to believe,  but I can jump right in with confidence having worked out those issues first.  And,  it only takes 10 minutes.  This painting makes 1566 in 1566 days :)

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Barn at Vineyard Hill

After a sunrise quick paint in the charming town of Washington, Teddy and I hustled back to Augusta to meet for the workshop caravan.  We spent a lovely day at Vineyard Hill learning to improve our mad art skills!  From creeks,  hilltops, vineyards,  barns to rolling hills,  this venue has it all!  I chose this scene because it has so many different opportunities to work on, and when I'm in a workshop - I want to kick the challenge up a notch!  I like what's going on here.... let's see if I can improve my daily work as well!  Painting number 1565 in 1565 days?!  Who can possibly keep track when I am doing so much painting?

Saturday, April 22, 2017

View from Katy Trail

The rain was pouring as I jumped out of bed,  and continued for hours!  With the whole Katy Trail as a guide from Dutzow to Defiance,  Teddy and I went in search of cover.  This place was very appealing,  but the only cover we had was her raised hatch on the SUV!  Squeezing in,  we painted fast.  I had to get that surface covered before the rain started again!  I did get it covered,  and the rain let up.  Thank goodness!  It was very cold when the wind kicked up!  The Schaeffers at the Lindenhoff served the artists a wonderful hot breakfast by the fire in their gorgeous B&B after the judging.  How generous, as relaxing, after the cold, wet morning paint out! Painting number 1564 in 1564 days :)

Friday, April 21, 2017

Tucked Away

This morning,  I got to participate in a live broadcast for "Great Day St. Louis"!  Several of us plein air artists painted the view from the pavilion at the Daniel Boone Farm,  with a live audience and the camera panning along behind us.  It is so fun to paint with all the excitement in the air!  We started painting right before the show began at 9:00, and we finished by 10:00.  Then, we rushed off to a paintout already in progress at Montelle Winery!  This painting makes 1563 in 1563 days, but really,  I'm way ahead of my count by now.  I may never post them all if I stick with only one a day!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Killdeer Drive

The blooming dogwoods at the top of this street led me to this location.  In my pre-sketch, I found that I downplayed the bright white blooms.  As I painted,  the whole scene demanded my attention,  and the white blooms simply did not work in the composition.  I painted them out,  with only the slightest hint that they were ever there.  It is a funny thing how a painting will take on a life of it's own sometimes,  no matter what I thought my focus would be initially.  This 1561st painting in 1561 days has already sold to the family who lives on that upper bluff :)

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Kate's Coffee in Ink

My new handmade journal has the most delicious paper!  The 100% cotton rag paper is soft and velvety,  and with a gentle texture.  This was the first drawing of the Josh Been sketching workshop,  and I have had so much fun!  It took me a little while to settle on my subject matter, but once I did, I drew four sketches back to back!  This was such an informative workshop - I am so happy I was able to take it!  If you ever get a chance to learn from Josh Been,  jump at it!  I have drawn this coffee house with my new fountain pen and a water brushpen to gradate the values.  I can float water right over this paper, and the magic just happens.  LOVE this journal!  Painting number 1560 in 1560 days :)

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Peonies of April

This was the plein air day for the Tri County Art League at the Overland Park Arboretum,  and what a gorgeous day it was!!  I could see the color of these blooms from across the lake - and I could not believe they were already blooming!  I scouted no farther.  No bloom pulls me right in like peonies!  I blocked in as the visitors ambled by,  visiting as I worked.  I was so caught up in conversation,  I nearly forgot to take the on sight photo!  Just another day in paradise!   Painting number 1559 in 1559 days....I think!   It's SO easy to lose track :)

Monday, April 17, 2017

Clematis in Ink

I already packed my new pen in Teddy's car,  and tonight I miss it!!  I pulled out three other pens to see how the ink moved with water,  and I was sadly disappointed!  So,  I grab my trusty Pitt pen,  and start drawing!  This clematis is one of the transplants I got from Norma last year - and it is blooming before mine is!  Her iris babies are also bursting,  and it is only April 17th!!  Crazy town!  I love the unique brown and cream color of these blooms!  This drawing is number 1558 in 1558 days :)

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Wine and Glasses in Ink

After a very busy Easter gathering with much family,  the house has settled down and I am on cleaning duty!   As I sift through the chores,  my mind wanders to my daily painting.  What better thing to record than the remnants of the day?  So,  I leave the empty wine bottle and a few of the glasses on the table,  and grab my brand new handmade journal from India!  It's buffalo hide cover is thin, supple and buttery.  The 100% cotton rag paper has wonderful texture,  is velvety and thinner than my other handmade journals.  Will it support the use of water?  I gingerly sketch with my Pilot Varsity fountain pen,  careful not to leave the nib on the surface too long.  I'm a little fearful of bleeding through.  As I take my water brushpen lightly over the lines,  the ink works it's magic.  It does not bleed through nor damage the paper.  In my carefulness, I leave it lighter.......I like it!!  Should I use this fancy journal for my upcoming sketch event?   Hmmmm....I think I might.....!  Painting number 1558 in 1558 days :)

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Lilacs in Ink

Oh my gosh!  I tried a new fountain pen today,  highly recommended by one of my artist friends.  I'm in LOVE!!  This Pilot Varsity fountain pen smoothly lays down my lines,  gliding evenly over this textured handmade paper.  With my line work complete,  I lightly wash over those lines with a water brushpen.....and watch the magic happen!!   Oh my, its a good thing all my Easter prep is done.........I will not be spending any more time in the kitchen tonight!  This pen is calling me with it's "siren song"!!  Painting number 1557 in 1557 days :)

Friday, April 14, 2017

Plaza Inked

This is my week of a hundred cars-  and by gosh,  I am going to get them in!   I love picking a focus and attacking it!  True as it is, I keep getting sidetracked by all the spring beauty bursting forth all around me!   This drawing has another 20 cars in it,  and plenty of tiny people with dot heads and dash bodies!  I am in this drawing,  behind my easel,  and more prominently located than the last one!   Can you find me?  Painting number 1557 in 1557 days  :)

Thursday, April 13, 2017

April Lilacs

I scouted for painting locations while out shopping this afternoon,  always ready to pull over and paint!   Nothing grabbed me, and the dinner hour grew near,  so I headed home to fulfill my duties.  I've got some beautiful tulips that were calling me,  but as I rounded a bed I was grabbed by these old lilacs!  I am seldom in town when they bloom,  but the season is so early - I am still here to capture their beauty!   And just to mix things up a little,  I have zoomed in on these babies,  catching the sky light behind them.  I brought some into the house,  and my,  how fragrant they are!!  Painting number 1556 in 1556 days :)

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Red Oak Autobus

I knew I had to draw this as soon as I rounded the corner.  So much nostalgia and character on this autobus-turned-cafe!  After painting the street scene with the Town Hall as the focus,  I pulled out my favorite journal to sketch this bus in ink.  Perspective is everything here,  so the lines needed to be correct.  I paused before adding watercolor,  but decided to wash in the color gently,  skipping over the rough surface.  There are so many historic buildings here - I wish I could paint them all!!  There is just never enough time!   Painting number 1555 in 1555 days :)

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Redbud Walk

This was a perfect day for plein air painting!  Warm temperatures,  mild winds,  and the sun shining on the fresh spring landscape,  who could ask for more?  Diane invited me over to spend the afternoon among her redbuds  - and I jumped at the chance!   Heading over right after teaching painting class,  I started sketching out the composition in paint.  With such warm light on the scene,  I chose a cool violet to sketch with.  Once in,  I marked my darks with this same shade before working on the light.  Next,  I skipped to the background,  working forward until the stage was set and ready for the stars - the redbuds!  In hindsight, I should have massed them in a bit first.  Oh well,  I'll do that next time!  Painting number 1554 in 1554 days :)

Monday, April 10, 2017

Red Barn in Carthage

For my third paint of the day,  I chose this wonderful barn across the street from Red Oak II.  I love the architecture of it,  and the showy red paint!  How could I possibly resist it's call?  I never draw things out with pencil first,  I jump right into ink.  I like the loose,  sketchy lines that I tweak as I go.  Once the ink rendering was complete,  I started filling in with watercolor.  I use my water brushpen with my tiny pan sets (watercolor confections - classic and decadent pies) by Prima.  I can take them anywhere!   This probably took me 40 minutes to finish - and it will live forever in my special handmade journal. 
This workshop weekend has been super fun!  I can't wait for the next one!  Painting number 1553 in 1553 days :)

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Town Hall of Red Oak II

The morning light drew me right in to this place,  as did the windbreak for creature comforts!  After battling the wind all day yesterday. I was ready to seek shelter!  I began by laying in my darks,  and then followed with the morning light.  That light soon loses it's warmth,  so it is important to catch it while I can.  The gusting winds hardly phased me as I was protected by the old cafe on my south.  This is a rather complicated composition,  but dramatic in the angles.  Lowell Davis came by to visit twice as we worked.  This has been such a fun painting trip!  This painting makes 1552 in 1552 days :)

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Old Salem Church in Spring

The wind gusts today were unbelievable!  They were strong enough to blow me back from my easel multiple times!   Me easel even blew over when I walked away from it!  Poor Sandy was scrambling after my stuff when a gust came and blew her easel over, too!  So, we just put our stuff back and got back to work!  This is the first demo of the Red Oak II workshop weekend!  I love the old country charm of this vintage church!  The warm, morning light is fleeting,  so I painted that first, after sketching my composition in with my brush.  Next came the shadow planes in their cooler tones.  With the lights and darks in,  it was time to work to the middle values and get the panel covered.  I had to keep constant hold of my easel,  with one leg planted ahead of me - just to keep my balance in that wind!  It even blew my painting arm back and forth as I painted!   I will not soon forget this painting day!  Painting number 1551 in 1551 days :)

Friday, April 7, 2017

Dalton House Barn

After having dinner in Carthage at Rumor Has It, which was fabulous, we arrived back at the Dalton House in time for a little "not so urban sketching"!  This barn is right outside our door,  and the perfect subject for drawing.  The light was fading, so I sketched quickly with my Pitt pen.  Once finished,  I still had enough light to add some color.  I worked until I could no longer judge the hues, then stopped!  I can't wait to get out and paint this charming town tomorrow!! Painting number 1550 in 1550 days!  :)

Thursday, April 6, 2017

JC Nichols Fountain Revisited

My fountain series continues on this very special khadi paper!  This paper is so special that I save these individual sheets for the fabulous fountains of Kansas City.  This sheet has a quirky little top edge which I love!  Pen work is like handwriting,  every artist has their very own style.  I try to follow form with line,  just as I do with brushwork and paint.  I start with squinting, to see all the values clearly.  I also finish the same way,  rechecking the path of lights and darks.  Sometimes,  a few darks need to be added just to improve the eye flow through the composition.  I have yet to add watercolor to this paper......perhaps the next one!   Drawing  number 1549 in 1549 days - and today is my birthday!  :)

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Wet Streets and Blooms

Determined to paint spring flowering trees today,  I went in search of those lovely red pink crabapples!   I found this scene from the Kohl's parking lot, looking southeast, towards Jose Pepper's.  The rain got pretty heavy at times,  but let up towards the end.  As long as I've got paint on the whole surface of the panel,  the rain doesn't  hurt anything.  If I don't,  and the panel gets wet,  those wet areas then resist the oil paint - and can't be painted until dry!  So,  I  can tilt my panel downwards a little until I get that paint on,  and then proceed normally.  The light every changing,  I paint it as I see it and then I leave it alone.  I think I paint faster in the rain.   Doesn't everyone?  Painting number 1548 in 1548 days :)

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Flowering Crabs in the Rain

As I drove past these beauties on my way home from the gym,  they called to me.  Answering their siren song with paint,  I started quickly.  I had to dodge rain with this one,  as the clouds brimmed over sporadically.  I had to finish this one in my car!  As a result of that,  my reds vary from the ones I see outside of my car.  I had not yet started the tree color when the rain forced me in.  My windows have a bit of a blue tint, and the difference is easily seen when compared with the outdoor photo.  Crazy,  right?  I didn't even realize it until I got out to take a quick photo before heading home!  I still like the results,  but I'll be back to capture their true color on another painting!  Each painting is a lesson,  after all.   Painting number 1547 in 1547 days :)

Monday, April 3, 2017

Rainy Day Greens

I love these dark rainy days for painting flowering trees!!  Their colors really pop against a stormy sky!   In this case, the trees are blooming white,  but their green is showing in the heavy masses.  Light darts out between the clouds irratically,  shooting across the grass.  I wish I had my cad lemon on my palette - it is the perfect shade for the sunlit grass!   I found a few more short brushes for this box that are a little stiffer,  in my stash.  Now, I'll be able to lay down those early strokes in a quicker,  more effective way.  Painting number 1546 in 1546 days :)

Sunday, April 2, 2017

JC Nichols Fountain Inked

Michaela has headed back to campus,  and the house is empty as I settle down with my pen and paper.  Rarely are things this quiet,  so I treasure the moment and really focus.  I got a new khadi paper this week that has a smoother texture and some cool edges!  Since these papers are handmade, each one is unique and beautiful before I ever make a stroke.  I also started with a brand new pen - yay!!  It is SO nice when the ink easily flows from the pen!  One of my favorite fountains, I love drawing it!  The horseman is so dramatic,  and the many streams of water are so artistically placed, it always draws the eye.  This Kansas City icon is my 1545th piece in 1545 days :)

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Union Station Sketched

This morning,  the Urban Sketchers KC group met at Union Station for their second official group event!  It was so fun to sketch with old friends  - and to meet new artists,  too!  I first drew this in ink,  and then washed it with watercolor,  using my watercolor confections and a water brushpen.  I love how portable this is!  I can literally take them anywhere,  they fit in a pocket!   The architecture of this historic 1914 station is amazing.  I could paint here all day,  if only I had the time!  This painting makes 1544 in 1544 days,  now to get ready for game night with the family!