Sentries

071516-Courtyard-PalmsThe queen palms serving as sentries for the mighty Date Palm. This is a favorite spot of mine in the landscaping, and these palms always seem so majestic. The viewpoint is a little below grade, from down among the blocks in the water feature. The decorative grasses are only about a foot tall, but I’m eye level to them here.

Laid out with the Kuretake #40 brush pen initially, then washed with color. The foremost palm frond and a few other points employ gouache, although the highlights on the date palm trunk are saved whites. Painted across the spread in my sketchbook.

Cobalt blue, green apatite, some PO62 to mute the blue and Jane’s gray mix for the background black glass building. The palm trunks are Raw Umber (with and without cobalt) and there’s a little PY129 and Naple’s Yellow among the greenery. Oh, and the shrubs are Jadeite. Nine pigments – no limited palette here! At least not for me.

Pentel Color Brush

040116-people-aI do almost all my painting with a waterbrush. The vast majority of my work is outside on location, and waterbrushes are perfectly suited for that kind of habit. Thinking about finding a nicer waterbrush led me into the world of brush pens, and just for grins I bought a Pentel Color Brush with black pigment ink, to try out the concept.

Results? I’m in LOVE.

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Courtyard People – March 21, 2016

032116-Courtyard-People-Ink032116-Courtyard-People-ColorHere’s some folks enjoying the early spring sun that was trying to break through the marine layer. I forgot my brush – roll to ink! Added color at home.

The ladies were deep in conversation for a good 20 minutes, enough for a nice detailed sketch. They were both dressed in silvery grays but I decided later to brighten them up a bit.

After they left, the gent with the phone arrived and sat in their place. He was head-to-toe in black except for one mad streak of blue provided by his collar.

I’m very happy with how these turned out – starting to like pen and ink more and more.

Courtyard People

031616-Courtyard-PeopleA nice day to kick off your shoes! That’s exactly what the second lady had done, enjoying some fine almost-spring weather. The corporate landscaping around here looks like giant kid’s blocks spilled everywhere. Most people sit on them and mess with their phones; amazingly I found two people to paint that were looking at something else. The upper woman had an old fashioned paper notebook and the lower was just staring into the clear blue sky. Saw another lady with an analog book. Banner day!

People are very much my weak point, especially proportions.

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Sunset Beach: Dawn

011416-Sunset-Beach-AMThe beach at dawn, my favorite time to go. It’s deserted and the sky is almost always at its best! Today a band of mist masqueraded as virga, and the rising sun washed everything in pastels. Also spotted a Heerman’s Gull, unafraid as I stared at him. Did not know which gull this is until I looked it up at home, but the field marks were obvious enough to ID him later.

Painted across the spine in my sketchbook. Green Apatite, PR101, PB35, Jane’s Gray, PO71, Raw Umber. Ridiculous amount of pigments  there!

Both painted at lunchtime, from memory.

Sunset Evening

120515-Sunset-TankersAh, the tankers at sunset. Spent a lovely hour or two sketching while the sun went down. We were there late enough for the tankers’ lights to come on, so I dabbed those in with a bit of Bleedproof White. Otherwise, that’s cobalt, PO62, and a dash of PO73.

Tankers were not the only thing in view this evening – in addition to the usual birds and porpoises, I made friends with a beetle.
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A Banner Day – Osprey En Plein Aire

090515-HCP-OspreyThis was an unforgettable trip to the park – I was painting a fairly nondescript landscape of the pond when a man passed by, and asked if I had seen the osprey. I hadn’t, and of course asked him where it was. He pointed – maybe 20 feet away and practically over my head! All that time there was a fabulous bird of prey right out in the open, and I missed him completely!

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A Quick Killdeer

040815-KilldeerJust found out it’s #DrawABirdDay on Twitter. Since “today” didn’t have much time left, I decided to Draw A Bird with my brush – no base sketch! About 20 minutes in my sketch book, from a Wikipedia ref.

I’ve always loved Killdeer, they have enchanted my summer nights since I was little. Didn’t find out for sure what birds they are until last month! They fly and call in the dark and you can’t see them. They never sound the same on the wetlands during the daytime.

6″ x 9″ on Fabriano Cold Press 140lbs. Bird: Raw Umber, Sicklerite, Jane’s Gray, and PO71 for the eye ring. For the background, a little Raw Sienna and premixed Hooker’s Green (PB27 and PY150).

Originally posted on WetCanvas.com.

The Third Bird: Brandt’s Cormorant

091814 Brandts Corm CCI painted three water birds to check out the Garza Papel 140lb sample sheets. Here’s bird #3, a Brandt’s Cormorant. Source image courtesy of stalksthedawn in the WetCanvas Reference Image Library.

Garza 140lb CP, PB28 Cobalt and PBr7 Burnt Sienna. Some of the darker grays are PB29+PBr7. Painted him with thoughts of the compromised young Brandt’s that practically flopped onto my feet during a morning beach walk a few weeks ago. He was struggling to move out of the surf zone and it almost seemed like he came to us for help.

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Childhood Friend

sketchbook5 052714This is the last page in my sketchbook, finished today. I painted an imaginary door on the first page and I kind of like to end a sketchbook with a reprise. This time, I painted the front porch of the house I grew up in. Not sure it’s my best work ever, especially the cast shadows from the rosebush. Still, good times, good memories of a place that only exists in my mind now. (The building still stands, but it’s been remodeled, new owners and it’s just not home anymore.)

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