Sunday, June 30, 2013

Morning Light on a Sycamore - Original Impressionist Style Oil Painting of a Tree and a Path - Nature Painting - 6 x 6 Oil Painting

"Morning Light on a Sycamore" | 6" x 6" | Oil on canvas panel.
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©2013 by Kim VanDerHoek

This was painted on location at Irvine Regional Park in Orange, California. I had a couple of hours to go out and paint while my kids were in school so I took a small 6" x 6" canvas panel along to work on. I think what takes the most time is selecting a painting spot once I arrive at the location. Weather, shade, bugs and people can all affect the spot I choose. Of course, I'm always looking for the best composition too.

In this case I liked how the shadows fell across the path and how the light played on the tree. I was particularly interested in capturing the reflected light on the left side of the tree trunk. It is caused by the sunlight reflecting off of the ground and onto the tree.

What I didn't get to paint but wish I could have, were all the horses and their riders that walked past me on the path. Unfortunately, none of them would stop for a few hours so that I could study them and add them to my canvas. Maybe next time I should bring along carrots and coffee to entice them into posing for me.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Stone Faced - Original Impressionist Style Oil Painting of Crystal Cove Reef Point Beach - Crystal Cove Beach Painting - California Beach Art

 "Stone Faced" | 12" x 9" | Oil on canvas panel.
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©2013 by Kim VanDerHoek

 Painted on location on a cloudy morning at Crystal Cove Reef Point Beach in California.

A couple of friends and I woke up early to go paint and to try to capture the early morning light. As you can see we didn't have that wonderful dawn light because of the cloud layer. It's pretty common to have clear blue skies everywhere in Southern California except just 1/4 mile inland from the coast.

That's what the weather was like the day I painted this. It was clear at my house but socked in with clouds just along the coast. Nevertheless, it was still a beautiful place to paint and I manged to find a view I liked. The nice thing about having a cloud layer is that it makes the rocks and sand seem much more colorful.

Below my friend Dori Dewberry took a photo of me finding my view by using my trusty viewfinder. I find it really helps me to block out distractions and compose my painting in my mind before I begin putting paint on my canvas. At my feet you can see a large tide pool where sea critters like to hang out.

Crystal Cove is one of my favorite places to paint and I keep returning here again and again to capture it's wealth of subject matter.

©2013 by Dori Dewberry

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Six Flavors - Original Impressionist Style Oil Painting of Candy - Candy Painting - Affordable Original Art

"Six Flavors" | 6" x 6" | Oil on canvas panel.
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©2013 by Kim VanDerHoek
Once again I had the students in my Monday night oil painting class bring in candy to paint. It was fun seeing all the different kinds of candy everyone had from striped candy canes to chocolate.

I used candy Dots as well as a strawberry flavored candy that was wrapped. 
There are several challenging aspect to painting a still life. One is that you have to spend a lot of time setting it up so that you have a pleasing design. The other challenge is lighting which also takes some planning. Unfortunately, my classroom isn't equipped with individual lights and we are stuck with the overhead room light which is not ideal.

In this small painting I wanted to make sure I didn't divide the canvas in half where the background blue meets the orange ground. I also wanted to scatter the candy Dots around in an uneven way so that they created unequal spaces in between. The strawberry candy added a nice vertical element. 
It was a fun exercise especially because I got to dip into my red paint a lot more often than I usually get to do when painting landscapes.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Ramshackle Cottage in Red - Red Cottage Painting - Crystal Cove Cottage Painting - Crystal Cove State Beach Painting

"Ramshackle Cottage in Red" | 8" x 8" | Oil on canvas panel.
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©2013 by Kim VanDerHoek

One of my very favorite places to paint is at Crystal Cove State Beach. In the historic area there are cottages that were built in the 1930s and 1950s. Many of the cottages have fallen into disrepair, however the Crystal Cove Alliance is working on renovating the remaining 29 buildings. This little red cottage is waiting patiently for it's turn at rehabilitation.

One of the things I love about my job is documenting the landscape using an artists eye. William Wendt created the first known painting of Crystal Cove in 1912 and since his time the cottages were built, the land sold and then sold again and the buildings all fell into a terrible state of decay. In Wendt's time there were no cottages and his view is an unobstructed scene of the bluffs and sea.

My painting captures this moment in the cottage's history, when it's past it's prime and on the cusp of a new life. I'll have to return to paint it again once it's been renovated.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Pier Patterns - Original Oil Painting of San Clemente Beach Pier - Architecture Painting - Pier Painting

"Pier Patterns" | 8" x 8" | Oil on canvas panel.
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©2013 by Kim VanDerHoek

A few weeks ago I went down to San Clemente beach to paint. I'd never been to that location before and thought it was time to give it a try.

The beach itself is not as exciting as Laguna Beach or Crystal Cove State Beach but, it has a fantastic pier with pilings that splay out at and angle underneath. The building you see on the beach is a lifeguard tower.

The challenge with this location is that it's been painted by local artists a lot. I wanted to try a view I haven't seen painted before (although I'm sure I'm not the only artist to paint this view), also see if I could work out an interesting design and I wanted to capture several waves coming in.

It was a fun location that I would like to revisit again.