Inktober 2017

Trying to see it through the whole 30 days of inktober this time around. Here's the last week - didn't mean to, but I think I've hit on a theme here. Let's see where it goes?

If you want to follow along with my daily drawings, my Instagram is where it's at. (Where's day one you ask? Good question. You'll have to get to my Instagram to see the time lapse of it. It's a bit NSFW)

Screen Shot 2017-10-08 at 5.25.33 PM.jpg

Patience is a virtue (that's really hard to abide by when all you want to be doing is painting)

Sometimes it takes a bit of letting go. What I mean is, painting is what I'd like to be doing just about every second of my life, but sometimes you have to let life have its way with you. It's been insanely (and I mean, absolutely crazy) eventful and busy since we've gotten back to California a few months ago, and I'm just now starting to hit my stride with balancing everything. Which means being able to carve out more and more time for painting. Thank everything. You can follow me on Instagram (which I promise won't be so quiet from here on out) if you want to keep up with my new pieces.  Here's a little progress shot of some fresh studio work.

California, take two.

 

It's been about seven years but I'm back in California and I'm pretty stoked about it. Sorry for the silence, the move was a three month long odyssey. So anyway, here's some new work.

I'll be unpacking the box of my paintings this week and deciding which ones I'm ready to let go of - you'll be able to find them in my online shop (click here). I've also added quite a few of the drawings from my Brando eyes series into the shop. Click any image below to purchase.

 

"I keep coming back" Ink & watercolor on paper, 2017.

"I keep coming back" Ink & watercolor on paper, 2017.

#8. Click image to purchase.

#8. Click image to purchase.

#10. Click image to purchase.

#10. Click image to purchase.

#12. Click image to purchase.

#12. Click image to purchase.

#13. Click image to purchase.

#13. Click image to purchase.

#14. Click image to purchase.

#14. Click image to purchase.

#1. Click image to purchase.

#1. Click image to purchase.

Back to Brando

Been about a year since I was totally bent on Brando's intense gaze. High time I got back to it.

 

 

 

To see more in this series begun last year, click here and scroll down (there's quite a few). I plan on arranging these into a gallery wall in the next few months. Check back for that.

Under the Influence

"Under the Influence" Oil pastel on toned paper. 2017.

"Under the Influence" Oil pastel on toned paper. 2017.

 

One of the artists I adore the most is having an exhibit open this week at the Chrysler Museum, so of course that got me in the mood for a drawing. Under the influence of Toulouse-Lautrec. 

No. 2

No. 2 - acrylic on canvas. 

No. 2 - acrylic on canvas. 

There's just something about wheatpaste graffiti in a foreign city that I've always gravitated to. I especially love seeing the decline of these pieces and catching them in a final stage of their lives. This is the second piece in my "Death of Art" series where I document deteriorating graffiti that I think are almost more powerful having been acted upon by exterior forces. Street art seems to be the best and most honest reflection of our modern selves (in my opinion) and I like to record their mature portraits.

Nature, The Answer is Always Nature

progress: gouache on paper.

progress: gouache on paper.

I love being able to paint outside on site. Studio work allows me to chase down and explore ideas, but all the energy is found outside. The swaying of a leaf in the breeze, the musky scent of soil, it helps enliven your brush stroke and creates a flowing conversation with the subject you're painting. Nothing will ever be as wholly engaging to my senses and enjoyable as the experience of plein air painting.

"Orchids Before a Fountain" Gouache on paper, 2017.

"Orchids Before a Fountain" Gouache on paper, 2017.

Two Thousand & Seventeen

It's always a good thing when the first piece you finish in a new year turns out to be something you absolutely love.

What I really enjoy about this series is that truly the most risqué part of it is your own thoughts. I give the suggestion, but your imagination has to do so much of the work. It can be as daring or tame as your thoughts allow. On the surface, it's just botanicals and abstract line work, but if you take the time to really look, you get a sense of what's going on, and if you take the time to become immersed, you create the story.

"Silk Stockings" Watercolor, charcoal & ink on paper. 2017.

"Silk Stockings" Watercolor, charcoal & ink on paper. 2017.

Back to the Wild

After a summer so hot there was really no way for me to get out and paint (I salute you who did, you're nuts) I'm finally able to start my plein air work again. Starting small with a little wildflower patch at the Norfolk Botanical Garden.

"Wild" oil on canvas panel, 2016.

"Wild" oil on canvas panel, 2016.

Mahalo

This series took a turn out of the meadows and into the tropical. Just in time for fall (my brain makes decisions even I don't understand.) P.s. Have I ever talked about how much I loathe photographing my work? In case I didn't, its my least favorite thing of anything ever... ever.

"Mahalo" Watercolor and ink on watercolor paper. 2016.

"Mahalo" Watercolor and ink on watercolor paper. 2016.

Sometimes I Open My Sketchbooks

& I turn up a bunch of work I guess I'd been hoarding, tucked away in all sorts of places. Finally decided to let go and put them into my shop. Here are two pieces recently added. Click here to see more.

Hawaiian Garden. Mixed media watercolor and Conté Crayon.

Hawaiian Garden. Mixed media watercolor and Conté Crayon.

Flowers in a Conservatory. Mixed media graphite and marker.

Flowers in a Conservatory. Mixed media graphite and marker.

Vietato

 

Italy has a strong, well documented history of graffiti (my personal favorites being what can be found in ancient bath houses), and when I was last in Rome I guess I was really diggin' what all the modern artists had to say. I keep looking back to my time in Italy for inspiration and in doing so came across an entire stash of photos of Roman graffiti circa 2010. This one that I chose to paint, I just have so many questions. For starters, what the hell is happening here? Did the person who ripped it down dislike it simply because it was graffiti or because of the message? Who was the artist? What are those little flying heads all about? Guess I'll never know, but at least now I have a piece of a Roman wall hanging on my wall covered in another artists handiwork and that's enough for me.

When Life Gives You Lemons

You make dozens of drawings of Marlon Brando's eyes. Because when things in life are not going your way there's nothing like a smoldering gaze to make things all better.

Haven't drawn in a while. It's making me happy so I'm rolling with it. These are a few of my favorites. Click any to enlarge. All are charcoal pencil on paper.

Moonrise Over Despotiko

This piece was a big turning point for me in terms of subject matter, style, and personal honesty in my painting. Despotiko is a small area of a small island in the middle of the Aegean Sea where you can see shards of sixth century BC pottery poking out of the ground. I visited there while studying art in Greece and there's something 'other' about this place on the planet. Some energy coupled with an absolutely gorgeous land/seascape that you can't help but respond to from a place deep within. It's stayed with me ever since I left and this is a piece that was a catalyst for me getting to a more meaningful place in my art. Despotiko is magic. 

"Moonrise Over Despotiko" Acrylic & oil on canvas, 9x12". 2015.

"Moonrise Over Despotiko" Acrylic & oil on canvas, 9x12". 2015.

Illustrating Architecture

Anyone who knows me knows that I'm a complete architecture nerd, so when the opportunity to illustrate two buildings for Sentara Hospital within the Eastern Virginia Medical School campus here in Ghent presented itself I was super enthused to be chosen for the work. 

Here are the two pieces that will soon be hanging in the entryway of Kaufman Pavillon next to artist Casey Holtzinger's illustrations depicting historic and retro views of other hospital buildings. It's definitely an honor to be the artist picked to carry on with the illustrations Casey started for the hospital and I hope I did the collection justice with my two additions.
 

Click any image to enlarge

Sentara Heart Hospital, watercolor illustration, 2015.

Closeup

Sentara River Pavillion, watercolor illustration, 2016

Closeup

Late Afternoon Camellias

 

 

Another plein air piece from the Norfolk Botanical Gardens in preparation for an upcoming spring show. This one was a serious challenge with the composition and the tricky lighting that was changing so rapidly as I painted, but it was well worth the effort.

 

"Late Afternoon Camellias" Oil on 12x12" canvas. 2016.

"Late Afternoon Camellias" Oil on 12x12" canvas. 2016.

Morning on the Terrace

"Morning on the Terrace" Oil on canvas. 2016.

"Morning on the Terrace" Oil on canvas. 2016.

 

My first plein air piece since last fall - the Renaissance terraces at the Norfolk Botanical Gardens. (Wanted a shot at some snowy scenes this winter but that requires snow, something Virginia, or at least Norfolk, lacked this season).

It was a gorgeous day, I met some rad people, wore a silly hat... can't be upset about any of that.