Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Rocky Mountain National Park

My first complete painting reflecting my travels in Rocky Mountain National Park. A magnificent area indeed! So many inspirations arose from this trip, I was not quite sure where to begin as I have hundreds of pictures from the few days I spent in Colorado. The mountains are very different from those in North Carolina. Unlike the mountains in western NC that are densely covered with trees and vegetation, the Rockies have many barren spots that are just short grass and foliage. This is evident in this painting where the tree line start about 1/3 of the way up the mountain.

The colors of the setting allowed for vivid blues and greens in all areas of the painting. My version of a triangular sky giving a reflection of hundreds of squares in the river make a nice abstract quality to tranquil scene.

Rocky Mountain National Park - 30x40" Acrylic on Canvas

Friday, August 20, 2010


In the next few months I plan on painting more cityscapes. I find these to be more challenging - Nature scenes lend themselves to more abstraction as there are no "true" lines or manufactured shapes. In landscape paintings if I try to make a straight line and fail, chances are the line in nature was not really straight anyway. Sides of buildings, curbs and other man made structures offer less margin of error. The painting shown was done about eighteen months ago - It is a broad depiction of downtown Raleigh. Lots of different painting techniques were used for this. Initially I was not really fond of this, but several people have remarked this as being one of my best. Perhaps I am my own worst critic.

All comments welcome.

Downtown Raleigh #1 - 30x30" Acrylic on Canvas

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Atlantic Beach in July

For years I have struggled with how to paint a view from the beach. On a lazy day in early July it hit me while idling the day away at Atlantic Beach. Looking out on the horizon I saw very definitive shapes and lines. Unlike other paintings I have done that usually involve tress and other complicated shapes, this setting was beautiful in its simplicity. I love the contrasts that this scene allowed fo: the dark blues of the water vs. the light blues of the sky and the tans and umbers of the beach vs. the water made the different segments of this work pop off the canvas.

Despite the apparent simplicity, this painting took an incredibly long time to complete. The water and the sand each were painted in small grids and then later refined. The beach actually has sand particles in it to make it a bit more authentic.

Atlantic Beach in July - 30x40" Acrylic on Canvas

Monday, August 2, 2010

Wet Canvas August Challenge

I was asked to host the August Challenge on Wet Canvas for the Abstract/Contemporary forum. The piece I am currently working on had a lot to do with how I shaped the challenge. I decided to invite artists to focus on the shape(s): whether we realize it or not every piece of art we create is compose of squares, circles, triangles and multiple other shapes. So I challenged people to look beyond the colors, the subjects, the textures and see the minimal basic shapes.

In just two days there have already been some wonderful postings. I am really excited to see how this plays out at the end of the month.