"Paintings have a life of their own that derives from the painter's soul." Vincent Van Gogh

Thursday, September 26, 2013

A Real Live Cowboy and a Bashkir

Cowboy Brad / graphite and white charcoal on tan paper /14 x 11

Brad / graphite on cream paper / 24 x 18
Back home from my trip to Los Angeles just in time to attend Wednesday life session with a real live cowboy. Brad owns a ranch and breeds Curly Coated Bashkir horses and also breeds paint mustangs. He is deeply involved in  charity work and frequently auctions off a paint foal in order to give the proceeds to a children's cancer group that helps families pay for treatment. He surely will have a special place in heaven. He was a very rugged guy with a well tended mustache and a flat brimmed hat. The hat challenged me the most as it was deep black with very little nuance or color and seemed to absorb rather than reflect the light. The tassels hanging over his shoulder are called a Storm Chaser and apparently work to hold the hat in place in case of high wind! He was a great model. Never having heard of curly coasted bashkir horses, I did a Google search and this is what I found:

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Drawing and Painting

What a joy this mornings portrait session was! Jeff was a perfectly composed model and somehow he neglected to bring  his parrot, his dog and his pony to the studio! He, did, however, insist on wearing his heavy tortoise shell glasses - but  no matter. Although I could not see his eyes and this session was so well attended that there was no hope of moving my easel, I feel that today was a success. I allowed my mind to fill with thoughts of Jeff and how they might translate into marks made upon the paper.
Jeff / graphite on cream paper / 24 x 18

Jeff / graphite and white charcoal on tan paper /  14 x 11
 In a week filled with family dramas, I found time to dash off a quick portrait study on cardboard and to begin Ballerina painting # 31. Its been a while since a ballerina called to me and I was most definitely caught by surprise!
James McNeill Whistler study / oil on cardboard / 12.5 x 12
 I love this concept of her and can't wait to work on it again - however, tomorrow I am flying to Los Angeles to attend to some family matters so she will have to stay in her unfinished state a while longer.
Ballerina 31 start / oil on linen / 24 x 18
To keep myself grounded and occupied in quiet moments, I purchased a used copy of Ray McMullens definitive biography (written in 1984) of Edgar Degas to read and absorb - Degas: His Life, Times and Work.

I would also like to take a moment to thank everyone that follows my blog, reads my thoughts and comments on my artistic endeavors. I value each person that takes a peak and each person that responds. You all leave deep impressions on my heart and I am so grateful to you all.

Friday, September 13, 2013

And then there was a Shepherd

Jim and Bella / graphite

Jim / graphite
"The heart is an instrument that rusts if it is not used. Without a heart, can one be an artist?" Edgar Degas