Monday, January 1, 2018

Henry Rankin Poore discusses how to unify a composition that is composed of a single unit such as a figure by either connecting the figure to the sides of the picture by cropping so there isn’t an isolated figure floating in the frame or by tying the figure to the sides by the use of a line going in the opposite direction.  He used Modifliani’s Anna Zbrowska as an example of cropping and Renoir’s A Girl With A Watering Can as an example of using a line (the edge of the grass) to tie the figure to the edges.  I have used both devices in this painting.  The line of the wall and the edge of the jar connect to the top and bottom and the foliage touches the right and left sides.  Also the jar is cropped off at the bottom.

Impressionistic Peonies in a Vase.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

More about Counterchange

Gradation in background and subject.    This sketch shows my plan for the background to go from dark at the bottom to light at the top and for the buds and flowers to do the opposite.  In other words the negative space (background)  transitions from dark to light while the positive space or figure does the opposite.

This also brings up the subject of figure ground relationship.  I try to make each negative space interesting and a different size from the others.  Look at the variety of spaces the leaves on the right divide the background into.  The negative spaces need to be as interesting as the positive ones.

Explanation of terms
Positive space-(figure)-flowers, leaves, and buds in this composition
Negative space (ground) - background

I am not sure why we have so many terms to discuss the same concept but when we are talking about figure-ground relationship it is the same as positive-negative space, and they both mean the relationship with the subject and its background and how important it is for the subject to divide the background area into interesting and varied shapes.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Abstract 29
This is a 6X6 oil on archival gessoboard.  It is listed at auction at Daily Paintworks.
I have kept most of the edges soft to emphasize the subtle shifts of color from warm to cool and light to dark.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017


The base of the tree is dark against the light leaves and it gets lighter against the darker background.  You can find examples of counterchange in nature, but many artists add this technique to their work to give interest to their compositions even when it isn’t in the scene.

Friday, December 15, 2017

Loosen Up

When I was learning to draw they taught us to find a line.  Make a line, smudge, erase, redraw and continue until I liked the results.  No one ever said to paint that way but I like the results I get when I paint, wipe off, smudge, and restate.  People ask how I get my work so “loose”.  This is the process I use.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

My youtube tutorial on how to paint the ruby pitcher
2 minute youtube demonstration

Daily Paintworks auction for Ruby Pitcher starting at $45.http

This is a 6X6 original oil painting on gessoboard.

The tutorial is 28 minutes long and shows step by step directions how to paint this painting and how to use oil paints without solvents.

Buy Tutorial on Gumroad

Monday, November 13, 2017

Sunflower and Delpheniums

I filmed a 20 minute tutorial of this painting.  I cover how to paint with oil paints without using solvents, easy storage and clean up of paints, solvent free cleaning of brushes as well as blocking in the sunflower and background.  Then the finishing strokes of paint that are so much fun.  The paints I used were cadmium yellow, red, and orange, yellow ochre, cobalt blue and ultramine blue as well as white.  Links to the tutorial are available at my Dailypaintworks gallery and at Gumroad.