Sunday, May 22, 2011

"You found my wallet?!"

Yesterday was the first weekend of the season for our local Farmers Market so I headed downtown for a few hours of pencil sketching. An opportunity to warm up the drawing skills for the upcoming Paint Historic Waxahachie event that starts this Friday. 

This is one sample page from my sketchbook showing a few images from the day. 

The most interesting thing to happen was about 4 hours later when my wife got a phone call from a friend telling her that he found my wallet. It turns out that it fell out of my shorts while I was sitting on a bench and sat there until my friend had a seat on the same bench and found it. Who knows how long it was there and what are the odds that someone who knows me would be the one to find it amongst the dozens upon dozens of shoppers. Fortunately I didn't even know it was missing until the call. It would have driven me crazy looking for it had I known that I needed to be looking for it. Thanks Jack. You saved my day.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Medina River Dam - Castroville, Texas

Watercolor on 15"x22" Winsor Newton CP. A studio piece from an old photo I took while staying at the historic Landmark Inn along the Medina River in Castroville, Texas. This dam was built in the 19th century to divert water to power a gristmill that still stands nearby on the grounds of this State-owned park. I specifically remember this trip’s time frame because it was right after 911. Probably a good place to visit at that time considering how quiet and serene it was. They didn’t even have televisions in the rooms (even today). I remember doing a pencil sketch in the guest book of our little room of thick stone walls which was above an old washhouse from the 1800s.

The Painting- the thing I try to strive for the most in my paintings is to have contrasts. Darks and lights, warms and cools, hard edges and soft edges and in this case, man-made against nature. This dam, along with the overpass in the upper right corner are perfect for playing these two opposites against each other. 

Friday, May 6, 2011

Port Aransas, Texas

Painted from an old photo. This is a small (7"x10") watercolor on Arches 140 CP. A typical gulf scene of a hot Texas summer beach.

This was an exercise in painting random people in various poses without any detail to speak of. The little person in red on the left was just a white accidental shape that looked like a child bent over in the sand. Another example of letting the painting have a hand in the piece. It's a lot like looking at clouds as a child an finding all sorts of things. It is amazing how many opportunities you can find within to enhance a painting. And they tend to have more expression and life than if you had planned them.