Move Your Studio Outdoors

This is a painting I did as a demonstration in my workshop at Botanic Gardens last summer. It is always fun and challenging to organize all the beautiful colors, shapes and textures that spring and summer present in abundance. In this painting, I allowed the white flowers to dominate the composition by surrounding them with the rich colors of the other flowers. Decisions on where to use hard and soft edges was critical because too many hard edges would have created a "cut out" effect and too many soft edges would have weakened the painting. Plan on moving your studio outside and joining me this spring and summer at Botanic Gardens and Sterne Park. I have added Sterne Park as a new painti

Between Blue and Yellow

Because of the holiday I decided to talk about painting the color green. If you enjoy painting landscapes, understanding as much as you can about the color green is essential. Because green is a mixture of blue and yellow, you can mix a cool green by adding more blue and you can mix a warm green by adding more yellow. In this painting, the distant trees are cool, because I added more blue, which causes them to recede into the distance. The lawn is a warm yellow green and the shadows on the lawn are a darker and cooler green. The speckled leaves against the sky are in the middle ground and I warmed them up by adding more yellow. The evergreen tree on the right is a deep dark and I used

Afternoon in Venice

Winter in Denver has me dreaming of a painting trip to Venice. This watercolor painting depicts one of the small canals where laundry hangs off the balconies and little bridges cross the water. I was attracted to the cast shadow on the walls and the colors reflected on the water in the canal. Dripping paint was used to show the weathered texture on the walls which are a mixture of earth tones and violet. Different values of indigo blue were used for the dark colors of the gondola and the warm colors in the water are a mixture of mineral violet and yellow ocher. The effective use of white paper is important in watercolor painting and the lightest colors, the laundry, balconies, and wind

High Desert Beauty

This painting of the mission with the aspens trees is in a quaint little town just outside of Taos. This site is one of our favorite painting destinations because of the abundance of charming subject matter. I was attracted to this subject because the aspen trees were in back lighting and the mission was in direct sunlight. I also liked the way the aspen trees overlapped the foreground, middle ground and background resulting in an interesting depth of field. The handsome cast shadow from the wooden bell tower with the white cross on top made me realize I was there at just the right time and I needed to get busy painting before the light changed. The shadow color for the aspen trees was a

French Ambience

Years ago in the early days of the Art Students League of Denver, the director and some of the instructors traveled to Southern France and stayed in a little town on the river in Provence. We painted everyday and got to know the people of the town with community dinners and activities including our own art show. As I look at this painting now it brings back wonderful memories of the enchanting sunlight, charming french architecture, and most of all the delightful french people living in that little town. For this painting I was attracted to the old stone masonry and all the flowers with their rich colors so I found a bench where I could setup. It started sprinkling while I was painting

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