Friday, January 31, 2014

January 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

My post to Leslie

First let me thank you for setting up such a wonderful challenge.  Actually I learned about your challenges from an internet friend Meredith Adler... at first my reaction was ... no I could never do that... but somehow this challenge got to me , maybe because of the date January my birth month and 14 is birth date .. I said to myself ---why not--- and I added to the list of rules --post what ever comes out----
What have I learned.... well mostly ,since this was a personal challenge, I learned that I CAN do it.... 

Learned to be more aware of my everyday activities and the "windows of time" that would allow me to paint. found out that even 30 minutes is a lot of time.

Arrange my desk that doubles as a computer desk and paint space.... so that in a few minutes I am ready to paint.... put up a picture I think  on day 27.of my setup.. roll out , roll in... my monitor shows my reference...

As for my painting I learned a lot about color mixing, what works in a small format with palette knife( I am one of your overseas fans that is anxiously awaiting your book)... strategies... more than I can mention.... 

Also the lesson that every painting doesn't have to be a masterpiece... none of mine were really great... but in each I learned something... and instead of tweaking moved on to the next day.... I have a pile that I may or may not fix...

Again thanks

Thanks to all that took the time to look and comment!!!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Day 30 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's  30 in 30 Challenge

17.5 x 25 cm
Oils on gessoed cardboard

Chompy, my daughter's cat, somehow enjoys cramping up in a bowl... Chompy was deserted by his mother because she was very ill.... My daughter adopted him and with the local vet succeeded in helping him get rid of the horrible fungus infection. My daughter saw the beautiful cat behind the illness!!!

17.5 x 25 cm gessoed cardboard oils with palette knife.... 

Can't believe this is the last day... I am sure there will be a vacuum.... but I hope to continue the momentum... It was a great journey and I learned a lot, about myself and about my painting....

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Day 29 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's  30 in 30 Challenge

17.5 x 25 cm
Oils on gessoed cardboard

Little blue bottle... though I would do a simple subject... simple it wasn't   Photo reference from Wetcanvas Image Library...   Can't believe that its already 29 days.... one more on the burner....

This has been an exciting experience... very positive, has helped me in my self confidence...Got a lot of palette knife time which is important... learned to regulate my time better... and I hope improved my painting... I am off to the goal of 120!!!  I took a course with  Larry Seiler at wetcanvas about 120 paintings... had started but some it didn't stick   I hope this month proves that I CAN.. maybe not every day but almost....

Workshop Family Portrait

Family Portrait   My Brother's Bar Mitzva

50 x 36 cm
Oils on grey cardboard

I have decided that since this blog is all about my Journey... I will be posting work done in my weekly workshops, various challenges, daily paintings, photography, which I have sadly neglected.  In the title I will put which category it belongs to.  

This was done in my weekly workshop.  The reference photo has a lot of history to it... It seems to have been haunting me in some way.  Everyone was smiling and I had a very sad, almost crying, face.  Why my parents chose this photo is beyond me.  Maybe the others were far worse... Anyhow there I was, a scraggly,gaucky pre-teen and feeling very sorry for herself.  I don't know why!!! I do remember that I didn't like the skirt I wore... A taffeta skirt that my mother hand painted a huge rose in oils which was quite stiff.

I have been carrying the reference image in my bag to class for several months, had made several sketches in my sketchbook but didn't really have a clue as to how to how I want my feeling to come across. I did see a family portrait at local community center that caught my eye... A family group where only the child was done in color, sitting in a chair, and the other family members with no faces and indistinguishable... I also liked the limited palette she used.  Since I wanted to distinguish myself from the others decided on the distortion... I would be bigger than the rest.... maybe I could have made myself bigger still.... Kept the smiles in their faces .. mine left blank.  I also exaggerated their stance and dress,, Heleni suggested I keep within the palette bit added the yellow on the skirt and on my braids an blouse.

I will post the reference... haven't scanned it... hope I have a duplicate because its a mess.... 

A little about the material.  I have used heavy 1/8 grey cardboard painting directly with oils . I did not gesso the board as I have done with my daily paintings.  I used thinned and also not thinned oils... Tried to use the palette knife but just would work... the board absorbed very quickly .. it was almost like painting with pastels.... I rather enjoyed it... and will continue the series... family stuff using this method.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Day 28 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's  30 in 30 Challenge

 25 x 17.5 cm
Oils on gessoed cardboard

The reference photo that I chose was a group of plastic beach chairs near the water, Dead Sea, near a shading station... rather like the composition between the sea, distant hills... colorful chairs lit by the sun... after sketching it in started to sketch in the chairs and just didn't work in this small format... so it ended up just one chair......Oils on toned, orange, gessoed cardboard. Done with palette knife with limited palette of red, yellow, blue and white.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Day 27 30 in 30

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

25 x 17.5 cm
Oils on gessoed cardboard

Wow... here we are on the 27th day.... can't believe it!!! Feel exhausted and brainwashed but otherwise OK!!!  A few years ago we took Amir, our grandson, with us to Ein Gedi Hotel and spa... boys love to climb!!!!

Oils on gessoed toned, yellow ochre, cardboard done with a palette knife... I used a limited palette.. Cadmium red, Cadmium yellow pale, Ultramarine blue and mixing white.   No blacks!!!!

A little about my setup... my painting area doubles with my computer table....I move the keyboard and mouse out of the way and roll out a picnic table cloth to protect the table.... when I am done roll it back covering the small section where the glass palette is... till the next time.   Here is how the set up looks in "painting mode"  You can see the reference image on the monitor!!!!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Day 26 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

15 x 20
Oils on wrapped Canvas

Another of Tristram's Starling or Tristram's Grackle.... he is not too afraid of humans and waits patiently for some tid-bits.... he loves grapes....Photo reference was taken at the spa Ein Gedi.... short video

Oils on a wrapped canvas.... what a difference from the cardboard....  

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Day 25 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

24 x 18 cm
Oils on covered cardboard

Shoes shoes shoes.... seen this motive a lot on the challenge and remembered taking a picture of Uri's new Adidas shoes at a school event a few years ago.   He had picked out the shoes by himself at the the store.... he was 2 !!!!
Who said shoes were simple to paint...not to mention striped socks.!!!!!

Oils on a cloth covered panel 24 x  18 cm.... done with a palette knife...

Day 24 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's  30 in 30 Challenge

18  x 13 cm 
Oil Pastels on covered cardboard

A small sketch of the fields we pass going home from our favorite spa.... Fields of poppies and some yellow flowers that I don't know.... Used oil pastels and some medium on a small format.  Actually did 2 but the second wouldn't scan or photograph well.... took a day off from wet painting!!!!

18  x 13 cm 

Oil Pastels on covered cardboard

Here is the second sketch... problem was that I was comparing the photo with the original under different lighting.... It is dark already and I am viewing the original under florescent lighting... photo was taken in daylight... so I am seeing more in the original!!!!. 

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Day 23 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

20 x 20 cm
Oils on cloth covered corrugated cardboard

Tristram's Starling or Tristram's Grackle is very popular in the Dead Sea area... took some nice shots on several occasions so I will do a few more of these beautiful birds....  they have a very distinct whistle call....
Short 1.16 minute video

Oil on cloth covered corrugated cardboard using a palette knife.  20 x 20 cm.   

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Day 22 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

 20 x 20
Oils on cloth covered corrugated cardboard

Another view of Bella...  This did not come out as I wanted.... scraped it down and started again..but it still needs work... too wet to work on and tomorrow off to class.  So this will be in the pile for tweaking!!!

Oils on cloth covered corrugated cardboard using a palette knife...A little about the cloth... this is a type of cloth used  by dressmakers to test out patterns... Its a loose weave and not bleached..   I had made curtains for my daughter and had left overs.... Glued it to the cardboard and then pasted around the back.  I coated them with 1-2 coats of gesso....

The color palette... I am using a limited color palette usually consisting of the 3 basic colors  : red blue and yellow.  I usually mix my own chromatic black using ultramarine blue and raw umber.  In this painting and yesterday's ... and the next one I tried using Indigo blue instead... not so sure I like it... The red I used here is Venetian red and made some interesting oranges and pinks... the yellows I used were lemon yellow, cadmium yellow light, yellow ochre, the blues were Ultramarine blue, Prussian blue and Indigo .  The format was toned with Naples yellow.

Comments and critique most welcome!!!

Experimental Stuff WIP

A while back Heleni suggested a challenge working with a partner and adopting something about their work and using it in our own creation.  My creation was supposed to be from the wonderful backgrounds Traudi does which I hadn't really captured.

So I decided to get help and brought 2 cloth covered panels plus gouache paints, the kind that children use, to class and Traudi showed me how to achieve the various patterns... She takes a sheet of paper ,I had plain brown paper, and she squishes out the colors, usually 2 hues, and randomly prints with these colors on the canvas....

I am doing "my " thing with them... and am also using the sheets of paper as well... these are WIP...there is a lot to explore in these methods... making use of the shapes for you imagination....

 40 x 60 cm

 40 x 60 cm

Traudi uses markers and cut torn colored paper for her creations....I am using drawing tools like charcoal and oil pastels....

Here is  the work Traudi did on the challenge... she adopted my use of children in some of my paintings. 

He Walked Through the Fields II

With the 30 in 30 challenge I seem to have forgotten to post current work done in my weekly painting workshop.  I have done 2 more panels for the -Through the Field - series see previous post.

 50 70 cm 

50 x 70 cm

These are 50 x 70 stretched canvas.   I am glad that I have someone  when to stop but some how I feel I can deepen the colors... I do however have the tendency of --overdoing--- and loosing the fresh quality.
These are done in a new concept for me... devising the canvas into smaller portions each representing a different view or scale of the whole reference....

I am trying to simplify shapes and colors and find knife work easier on larger canvases....

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Day 21 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

 20 x 20
Oils on cloth covered corrugated cardboard

Please meet Bella!!! She is much prettier than my painting.... she adopted us jumping over the wall from my neighbors yard.   She gets along OK with Lily our new dog we adopted from a shelter and Gingy a yard cat that also adopted us... sometimes we even get a visit from my neighbor's Peacock but haven't been able to get a good reference photo of him.....

Oils on cloth covered corrugated cardboard 20 x 20 cm..using a palette knife. I had made these formats quite a while ago and will not make any more... they are very difficult for the knife work

 I am learning quite a bit with this challenge... what subjects,size, formats that are compatible with the tools I use mainly palette knife..

Monday, January 20, 2014

Day 20 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

20 x 20 
cloth covered corrugated cardboard

Found this reference the WDE All Media Events on Wetcanvas... thanks Christine... was fascinated by the sense of distance and the reflections..the yellow is a bit stronger in the original.... not satisfied with the clouds! 

Oils on cloth wrapped corrugated cardboard with a palette knife.....

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Day 19 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

17.5 x 25 cm
Oils on cloth covered Masonite

Interesting photography doesn't always make good paintings.. Found an interesting photo that I had made of the shadows on the wall.  I had done a photo manipulation and tried to capture the same feeling in painting... didn't work...

Oils on a cloth covered masonite board with palette knife and a piece of Scotch-Brite!

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Day 18 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

20 x 20 cm
Oils on cloth covered cutting board
Made it to day 18...

Actually painted this yesterday together with Day 17... Still with the blocks and palette knife.  Had a hard time with the foreshortened view of the block.   Tried to keep in mind blocks of color and not that it was a block.... Didn't photograph well... end of day.... blue is much more greenish grey.

Oils on cloth covered cardboard done with the palette knife.  

Friday, January 17, 2014

Day 17 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's  30 in 30 Challenge

20 x 20 cm
Oil on clothe covered cutting board

Today's painting session was for me very therapeutic... started late... had lots on my mind but when I started painting it seemed as if I was in a space of my own.... don't know if the work shows this... that is not important... felt more in control of the knife.... white came our much to glaring ... all in all these blocks have been a good exercise. I like the orange color better than day 16!!!

Giant Lego blocks. Oils on cloth covered cutting board....20 x 20 cm done with palette knife 

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Day 16 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's  30 in 30 Challenge

20 x 20 cm
Oils on cloth covered cutting board

Today I thought I would choose a simpler subject... how wrong can you be...simple sometimes is more difficult... but I will continue this trend in hopes that the next will come out better... these are supposed to be giant Lego blocks..

Oils with palette knife on cloth covered cutting board.   

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Day 15 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's  30 in 30 Challenge

20 x 25
Oil on gessoed cardboard

20 x 25 
oils on gessoed cardboard

Another view of the beach at Ein Gedi ... photo taken on a winter day's... actually it rained a bit which is very rare in this region... calling this a WIP because it really needs some more work on it.. maybe I'll have time before date or not... I doubt it cause its the day I have "baby-sitting duty"  .  Well I did ake advantage of an hour + and am proud of myself for rolling out the table cloth and taking out the paints... fixed horizon and shore lines... and front sand... Too wet to  work but needs tweaking... should I blend more???

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Day 14 30 in 30 Challenge

20 x 25 
Oils on gessoed cardboard

Another view of the Dead Sea... Life Guard station on Ein Gedi beach.  This was taken in 2003. Each year the beach recedes a meter or more... so this piece of beach is now flat hard sand and salt...

A tractor pulls a train along the hardened flats from the main spa to the beach ... this was also taken in 2003.. the tractors today are air conditioning cabins...

Tractor train 2003

Heading toward the beach 
Air-Conditioned Tractor

Oils with palette knife on 20 x 25 gessoed cardboard... 

Monday, January 13, 2014

Day 13 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

20 x 25
Oils of gessoed cardboard

Feeling a bit stressed... the work not flowing like it should... interruptions in the daily chores... feel on edge..shows up in my work.... and to top it off blogger is acting up!!!!

This is a view of the the Dead Sea on the Ein Gedi beach.  One of my favorite spots. have not done justice to the variations of the water and the vast hard sand beds with layers of salt... the Jordan hills in the distance...   20 x 25 oils with palette knife on gessoed cardboard.  

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Day 12 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

22 x 25 cm
Oils on gessoed cardboard

Its just one of those days... nothing seems to work... probably scraped this a couple of times and also photographed it at least 3 times... even though its overcast today the black is not coming the way it looks in the painting.... in the spirit of and according to my own rule .".no matter what post"

Another of Mishmish and Ludwig dozing on the bed... again found it hard to get the details with the knife.
Oils done on gessoed cardboard with palette knife. Guess I have to simplify more!!!!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Day 11 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 challenge 

20 x 25 cm
Oils on gessoed cardboard

Another image of Mishmish looking out the kitchen window.... Mishmish in Hebrew is apricot and out side is an apricot tree... imagine a tree... anyway the tree fell in the last snow storm...

Bit off more than I can chew on this one....  Oils with palette knife on gessoed cardboard.   

Friday, January 10, 2014

Day 10 30 x 30 Challenge

Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

20 x 25 cm
Oils on gessoed cardboard

This was finished late last night and photographed this morning... and now after a lazy day at our favorite spa I am posting.  Today's Leslie's post really hit home to me.  
It's literally impossible to paint your best when you undertake a challenge like this. Rather, it's about the process we have to go through to paint a painting every day.
 That is exactly how I feel with this challenge... for a long time now I have wanted to paint at home and not only at my weekly workshop... had millions of excuses lined up... not enough time... oils and the mess...etc.
With this challenge I am proving to myself that it IS possible.
I am also much more efficient when it comes to painting, I literally go to my easel, do a quick sketch and start painting within a few minutes. 
My table which is both my painting table and computer table has been organized... a tablecloth covering my palette, knives, some paints... containers with linseed oil and turps... and small little containers with paint from previous sessions... want to paint... roll out the cloth...
When faced with a Challenge we are more focused and excited about reaching our goal. What you will learn this month will help you all year. You will have an easier time painting those masterpieces.
I hope that I will over come the fear of NOT succeeding  every time.. and learn  new habits that will allow me to grow!!!

Painting of my daughter's two cats, Mishmish and Ludwig cuddled together on a down bed..  20  x 25 gessoed cardboard... yes still with the cardboard.....

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Day 9 30 in 30 Challenge

Leslie's Day 9 30 in 30 Challenge

22 x 25
Oils on gessoed cardboard

Today was just one of those days.... decided on COLOR after more than a week monochromatic paintings..
The pears were tastier and better than the painting...After scraping at least twice or maybe three times it still a muddle.... 

Oil with palette knife on gessoed cardboard.  Used the three primaries... cadmium red, ultramarine blue, cadmium yellow pale. 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Day 8 30 in 30 Challenge

Day 8 Leslie's 30 x 30 Challenge

22 x 25
Oil on gessoed cardboard

This small painting was also done ahead of time because of the 2 days I go to my daughter.. I am not gone 2 days... but the time cuts into 2 days... Have to be one step ahead.... that is part of my personal challenge... 

Dried weeds in a bottle!!The background for this started with the palette knife but it was much too busy so I smoothed over with the knife,,, but then blotched with a paper towel ,,, liked the texture... Scratched in the drawing of some dried weeds and painted with the knife... 

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Day 7 30 in 30

Leslie's Day 7  30  in 30 Challenge

 22 x 25
oil on gessoed cardboard

Good thing I prepared  before hand.... as Leslie says on those days when "life" sort of gets in the way.  Usually I go to my daughter on Wednesday... but this morning she asked if I could come today.... of course... Ok  had to take another picture because I fixed something I saw in the first... went to my art workshop... back home processed the image... pasted it on the blog post... and now I am writing from her lap-top and will soon post.... so regards from Jurusalem!!!

Painting of Ruthie's ceramic elephant.. oil on gessoed cardboard.  Still limited palette and painted with palette knife.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Day 6 30 in 30 Challenge

Day 6  Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

20 x 25 
oil on gessoed cardboard

Wow, one day and its a week... I am really loving this process and I hope it spills over after the challenge.  its such a good habit to do something creative everyday.  Since I don't have a studio I have to share painting in my small computer room... and when I say small I mean small... so I have to really keep things organized... I put a paper tablecloth on the table... move the keyboard and mouse...luckily wireless... to make room for palette and all the paints etc... finished roll up the tablecloth over the cleaned palette with other stuff I was using and the desk is now for computer use... since I use palette knives mostly clean up is easy... tomorrow roll out the cloth and begin ... 

Oil on a gessoed panel painted with a palette knife.  2 dark bottles.  tried to use the "Island Ocean''system I learned from Carol Marine... need more practice...but I think its a good idea especially on small pieces.  Had to rotate the format to use the knife in various spots .... Feel this is better than yesterday's flop.... I added yellow ochre to my palette.

One more day and it will be a week... and I am still here... hiding in plain site  !!!!  

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Day 5 30 in 30 Challenge

Day 5 Leslie's 30 in 30 Challenge

22 x 22 cm
oil on gessoed cardboard

Started early this morning... got a sketch in ..but when I got to painting... just didn't seem to work out... 
guess that happens.... more to me it seems.... scraped and rubbed the paint and toned the board a second time.   Didn't  want to use -white-- so wiped the highlight areas... used the oils thin.    Well in the spirit of the challenge and according to "my rule" to post no matter .... hey I do like the bottle cap!!!!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Day 4 30 in 30 Challenge

 20 x 22 cm
oil on gessoed cardboard 

Still not over the "fear" factor.... who/what is is I certainly don't know..... posting where there are over 400 entries  who will even notice....   OK its only day 4 maybe in a few days I will get over it.

I really want to take this opportunity to thank my very good friend Meredith Adler.... without her constant support I wouldn't be here.... Thanks Meredith!!!

Corked glass jar.. oil with palette knife,paper towels, baby wipes and cleaning wipes... still with my limites palette of ultramarine and raw umber  toned the format with a thin layer of ultramarine.  Not sure if this is finished... critique/advise would be much appreciated. 

Here is a charcoal sketch I did before the painting.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Day 3 30 in 30 challenge

20 x 22 cm
oil on cardboard 

Day three... Leslie's 30 in 30 challenge

Friday.... lots of household chores before Shabbat, so started painting after lunch today... no sun from my window and had to make do with artificial lighting... also I am a morning person so will try harder to find more "window of time" in the morning when the sun, streams through my window.

Tried to vary my grays with the hues of my basic gray... in this case ultramarine + raw umber.  So I have some cooler and warmer tones.  Tried to not fiddle to much and put done color and leave...Oils with palette knife on gessoed cardboard with a thin tone of raw umber

Calling this a WIP because it does need some tweaking and its too wet....

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Day 2 30 in 30 Challenge

 20 x 22 oil on cardboard
Palette Knife

Still working in the grays with a palette knife, this rime I toned the background.  
Feel a bit better with this than yesterday's. which I have scraped and will re-paint.  Still not completely satisfied with the knife strokes... want them more decisive and confident... hard on such a small format.
Pot a little lopsided and had problems with the handle... scraped at least twice...

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Day 1 in 30 in 30 Challenge

Yael's Pot
20 x 22 oil on cardboard

Its started.. Leslie Seata's  30 paintings in 30 days . For the past week I have been giving this much thought going in and out of stress.I have asked myself why put myself through this stress...
 only if I push will I get over the fear barrier
 only by painting will I learn
 only by painting will I experiment and play
 January my birth month
 14 my birth day

 I decided the first week to try to go to the basics.... and what better way then using monochromatic tones.  This first painting  20 x 22 cm done on card board with one coating of gesso.  Worked with oils and palette knife.... one thing I noticed on the gesso was that my strokes weren't going on as smoothly as I wished... so I may put on a tone of diluted paint next painting. Grays  where my own mix...  french -ultramarine + raw umber.

a few of my own rules  "... not EVERY painting has to be a masterpiece!!!!"   "no matter what POST....."  
don't look at other posts before you post"

I was completely not satisfied with this today scraped and wiped most of it off... hope to repaint tomorrow morning with the pot in morning light from my window....