Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Saturday, November 01, 2008
This is "San Pedro Rail Bridge", another large new painting, 36 x 48 inches, oil on canvas. There's alot of thick impasto on there, as well as thin washy areas in the shadows. I troweled down some thick paint on the areas of the concrete bridge supports, I really like the effect. And I'm especially pleased about how the palette and overall color harmony of the painting turned out, sometimes less is more. The simple, yet bold graphic effect of the composition really worked on the large scale of the piece, it makes for a looming and weighty feel over the viewer's vantage point.
Monday, September 22, 2008
"Looking Inward" is a large 36 x 48 inches, oil on canvas. It took months to finish. My inspiration for this piece is from something Carl Jung once said, "Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens." And a quote from Gary Parent, "To see your Dream you must stop looking outward at everyone else's Dream, and look inward to see and discover your own Dream."
The figure in this piece, "Looking Inward" is an obvious self-portrait. I started with a little sketch of this diner interior, it's "Cindy's" in Eagle Rock, close to where I used to live in Pasadena. But I wanted to include a figure in an interesting way, so I challenged myself to sketch one in the scene. After I doodled the guy outside, looking into the brilliantly lit diner through the window, I felt it had a symbolic dream like quality, so I thought it would be a great opportunity to do a self portrait. Lately, I have been developing an interest in psychology, read allot on dreams, the writings of Carl Jung, as well as Victor Frankel's "Man's Search For Meaning". And I believe that the greatest thing an artwork can do is to develop and carry some personal meaning for my life, and pass some on to the viewer, to discover significant meaning in his or her own life as well.
Friday, September 12, 2008
The setting is a building facade in downtown Los Angeles. When I first saw it, I imagined that it might be the old Chouinard art school's building on 3rd Street, the school that eventually became Art Center where I attended college. But this was just an assumption due to the bas-relief sculpture and decorative elements seen on the beautiful old building, on closer examination they're obviously symbolic representations of history, education, and the arts.
I found it to be an ironic scene that this beautiful old building, appearing to have once been erected to somehow glorify the arts, was now a textile manufacturing plant in the garment district... some people might refer to it as a "sweat shop". The worker looking out the window is a kind of psychological self portrait. As I worked on the piece, it became evident that the image was full of alot of personal meaning to me, this will be one of those paintings that I'll especially hate to part with.
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Friday, June 06, 2008
This accompanying piece is called "Stockton Trains North", oil on masonite, 16 x 24 inches. Painting on masonite is a different challenge from painting on canvas, the surface is much more slick and makes for great transparency in the paint. I'll definitely try it again. I had fun with the warmer color in this one, had to do lots of glazing, and I did have to paint that sky three times to get it just right. But the clouds do add to the underlying zig-zag composition of the overall piece.
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
This is my newest painting "Chavez Ravine", 18 x 18 inches, oil on canvas. The location is close to Dodger Stadium, that's downtown LA in the background. I painted on location here with my pal William Wray a couple of years ago, I used my plein-air study as color reference for this more finished studio piece. I was going for a more impressionistic palette with subtle color and a hazy atmospheric feel. As I worked, it helped me to keep in mind... warm foreground receding to a cooler background.
Recently I acquired a couple of drawings by Sam Hyde Harris. I was inspired by some paintings he did back in the 1930's and 40's, some of which were done around Chavez Ravine. One such piece is reproduced in a book I have, called "Plein-Air Painters of California, the Southland" by Ruth Westphal.
Saturday, May 10, 2008
Sunday, April 27, 2008
"Day's End" is 22 x 22 inches, oil on canvas. The view is in Pasadena, looking west on Walnut, very close to my old studio. When I started this piece, I did a little sketch with a cloudy sky. But as the painting progressed, I couldn't bring myself to change the effect that I got with the simplicity that you see here, the large mass of yellow, fading up into the darkening evening sky. It's in stark contrast from the bluish dark foreground. The view made me think of my drive home in my Art Center College days.
This painting is at the Timmons Gallery in Rancho Santa Fe, along with a handful of other pieces I recently brought down there.