Thursday, September 15, 2016

The Power of Destruction Oil Painting Workshop 2016

"6th Street Bridge Reflections"

Saturday and Sunday, September 24-25, 2016 join me for a special workshop at Randy Higbee Gallery.


Workshop Description

How many paintings have you created that you aren't happy with? How many paintings do you have hidden away hoping that one day soon you'll work out all the problems with it and make it better?

Join me as I show you the power of taking risks when you are painting. Learn to let go of perfection and open the door to a new way of working creatively. Learn about edges, why abstract shapes are important even in a representational painting and different methods of applying paint. Having a focal point, focusing on large shapes, value and color mixing will also be discussed, however, this class is very different from all of my other classes so, if you've taken a class with me in the past be prepared for something new.

In the morning class will start with a painting a demonstration using photo reference. After lunch I'll provide one on one instruction to each student.

Please bring several photo references, several blank canvases and one or more finished paintings that you wish you could improve.

If you are really brave, bring in a painting you aren't happy with and we will work directly on top of it by using the techniques you will learn in class.

Where: Randy Higbee Gallery, 102 Kalmus Dr., Costa Mesa

When: Saturday & Sunday, September 24th - 25th 2016, 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Cost: $120 for 1 day or $200 for both days


Tuesday, September 13, 2016

A Special Invitation

"Interconnection No. 3"

New Artwork Preview and Painting Demonstration

You are invited to a special artwork viewing and painting demonstration this Saturday, September 17, 2016 where I will create an abstracted landscape from start to finish. 

On view will be new, never shown before works on paper, panel and canvas. 

I won't be holding a studio sale this year so, don't wait to snap up that special painting. *Hint - the paintings on paper have been extremely popular.* If you are outside the area call Chemers Gallery to make a purchase.

Now through September 17th enjoy 20% off of my artwork in the gallery!

When: Saturday, September 17, 2016 from 1:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Location: Chemers Gallery
17300 Seventeenth St. Suite G
Tustin, CA
In the Enderle Center

(714) 731-5432


Thursday, September 1, 2016

The Power of Destruction

Perfection. The word brings to mind overly manicured gardens at historic French villas, straight lines that you're not allowed to color outside of and predictability.

Some painters strive for perfection. I imagine they are the ones who painstakingly recreate every detail of a subject using tiny paintbrushes with 3 bristles on the end. They spend months duplicating what a camera can capture in seconds. Their audience praises their work by exclaiming,"That looks exactly like a photograph!"

When you are learning to paint you struggle for years just trying to make your stuff look like stuff. You spend time trying not to make mistakes, hoping you're doing it right and figuring out how to make your stuff look darn good.

One day it dawns on you that your stuff actually looks like stuff! And then you spend a whole lot more time (a lifetime) trying to make your stuff look as amazing as possible.

This year a huge lesson I've learned is embracing destruction. Every studio painting I've worked on this year has almost been wiped entirely off the canvas. What seems to happen in this, I do some sketches and color studies, then I transfer my idea to a larger canvas, I block in all my big shapes and I passionately hate every inch of the painting.

The dark side of my brain whispers, "That's it, you lost it, you can't paint worth a damn anymore. Hang it up. Sell off your equipment and go back to work as a graphic designer."

Then my stomach reminds me that it's lunch time and I'm hungry. I get very hangry (that's hungry and angry mashed together in case you weren't aware) and tend to be negative until I'm fed. After eating I remember that I love painting, it's my compulsive obsession and I don't want to be a graphic designer again. So I take a look at the painting.

I still hate every inch. I plan on wiping it off first thing after dropping my kids off at school the next morning.

However, I refuse to let it be a complete loss. I plan to experiment with it before wiping it off just to see what I am able to learn by pushing paint around. More specifically, I plan to destroy parts of it by breaking edges, scraping away large areas with a palette knife, drawing on it with a pencil, slapping thick paint through passages where I see a sharp line and using tools can only be found at a home improvement store.

Why not, right? I was going to wipe it off anyway.

And that's when it happens - the interesting stuff, the stuff worth keeping, the stuff that makes the painting worth looking at, the fun stuff. The more risks I take the more interesting the painting becomes until eventually I don't hate it anymore and I don't plan on wiping it off anymore.

Now I embrace the opportunity for destruction. In fact, I look forward to it.