Thursday, December 31, 2009

In between working on my grizzly I have several other oil paintings I am working on such as this 8"x10" painted on Ray Mar canvas.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

I was asked about the varnish I use for my watercolors[gouaches]
I like 3-4 coats of spray fixative like Krylon UV resistant Clear Matt or Gloss. That is a preferance for individual taste. Some artists I know will even add a coat of UV Varnish brushed on or sprayed on afterwards. That would be to an artists taste but I don't.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Another day working on my Grizzly. I am trying to get the lighting on the Bear so he stands out and working on the Sage. Same problem-trying to adjust the values and get it to all work together.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

I worked pretty diligently on this painting Christmas Day till about 3:00 when my wife and I took a trip up to the Sheep Range to check out the Bighorns.[Will be posting that on my Outdoor Adventures]On my last post Susan Roper asked about my background color. I used a mixture of Ultramarine Blue and Neutral tint. At times for something like this I will use Indigo. I have kind of established my lights and darks and though it doesn't show off quite as well in this post I got the shadows and textures on the snow bvank just like I wanted. Hope I won't have to go back in there as I'd hate to mess that up. The next big challenge will be getting the lights and darks on the bear and make all that work. A lot of the darks blocked in will be Sagebrush and Shrubby Cinquifoil though too early in this setting for flowers. Some grassses will help but to keep it scientific I'll have to be careful with that as a lot of grasses at this time of year will be very mated from the winters snow cover.

Friday, December 25, 2009

This morning I didn't like where things were going so I took out one of the pine trees and enlarged the grizzly. I had put in dark bands of snow in the background shadows but it didn't read properly so out they came. It is looking a lot better all ready.
I haven't done this in a while and several artist friends have drawn my attention to the fact. Recording a painting from start to end. So here is the start of a painting I have been tossing around in my head since last spring. I had taken some photos of a melting snow bank and thought it might work to include a grizzly just emerged from hibernation walking through the sage with this unmelted bank of snow. I have quickly sketched[painted]things in with watercolor mixed with gouache white on #1 illustration board. 15"x24". I have taped 5/8" of the edges with drafting tape. I am planning to use a mat color of some sort this width along with a heavier Oil type frame upon completion. The mat[if all goes as planned will be 3/4". I don't know yet if I will glass it or varnish with a watercolor varnish.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

I do wish all my friends out there a very Merry Christmas and it is my hope that God's blessings will sustain you abundantly this coming year.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

I have been working on this Oil Painting for about 3 weeks off and on and is a commission job for a collector I actually met on the trail out of Dubois a few years ago. It is 18"x24" and done in Oil from a photograph this fellow had taken. It was a great photo so well depicting the glacier country with Gannet Peak[highest point in Wyoming at 13,814']Such a beautiful area but sure is a job getting there. It was pure pleasure painting this scene.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

I have just finished this 8"x10" Oil Painting that I call "Monkey Flowers at Lakes edge".
This is a very beautiful wildflower that likes wet areas such as along this lake edge or along mountain streams. It also comes in a yellow variety and are often found growing together creating a tapestry of color for stream beds.

Finally a break in the weather. It has quit snowing and as of noon today it is above zero. +8 in fact. Funny how zero seems warm after so many days of below zero including -23 last night at 9:00pm. It must be because of our bodies climitizing?? That is the great thing about Wyoming. So cold one day and along comes a chinook[warm wind]that changes things right away. This little fawn who is enduring his[her]first Wyoming winter does not seem too impressed though. I just did photograph it outside my living room window.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

It has turned bitter cold here since Thanksgiving. We have not had the snow some parts of the country have but there is several inches on the ground and with the last few nights at -17 and -18 and highs only to -3 yesterday and hoping to get that warm today we are feeling the effects of it. Ducks and Geese are seemingly enjoying the warmer river water outside my studio window. They look cold but I guess that warmer water is better than sitting out on the cold ground. Mist rising from the warmer water into the frigid air makes for a really surreal looking scene. All the trees and brush along the river are dressed in a heavy coat of frost and snow. It really is beautiful and some great painting opportunities. I just might have to try something with this photo I took.
My painting has really slowed down as I seem to be having trouble getting the swelling down on my foot to be able to start therapy on it. This morning I went to the Therapist practitioner and he put me in a vecroed getup from my knee to my toes. It is a nice massage type machine and in 30 minutes it was a wonder what it did. He sent it home with us so that might be pretty relaxing way to spend this afternoon.
I also have really slowed down on my Painting-a-Days. Will get back to them as soon as I can. Thanks all for your e-mails and comments. They really mean a lot to me.
God bless and Merry Christmas all.

Friday, December 4, 2009

I have been working on several small [8"x10" Oils]paintings of wildlife and have just finished this Mule Deer Buck in the snow. I had hoped to have several ready for the National 2-Shot Goose Show next weekend but we are loading out for it today so I have run out of time. I did this painting on a Raymar canvas panel.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Rock formations east of Shoshonie, Wyoming on way to Casper.
Tuesday afternoon my wife and I headed to Casper where yesterday morning I got to go to the surgery center at the Bone Doctors offfice where I was put out for about 10 minutes while they pulled out the hardware in my heel and then into a boot cast which is actually heavier than the cast I had on but it is removable. And that is a plus while sleeping. The fun part will be monday when I start physical therapy. I was given a prescription for pain pills but so far-knock on wood-I haven't needed them. I hear I will for the therapy sessions.
Our trip to Casper was uneventful but the return yesterday afternoon was not fun. A good old fashioned Wyoming blizzard hit and it was 200 miles of wind driven snow and temperatures falling to the single digits. It was 35-40MPH of white nuckle driving for my wife. Needless to say it was a long trip.
A side story:
JonRobinett, husband of Deb Robinett who does the amazing wildlife photography in our gallery,who is the ranch manager of a ranch NW of Dubois was relating my heel problem with an old rancher in southern Wyoming near where he was working at the time. It seems this fellow had an injury not unlike mine but thought that cast was hindering him from doing his ranch work so with a hammer and chisel he got the cast off only to discover the pins that stuck out from his heel in various directions. Now this really hindered him and he set off trying to remove them. When Jon came by he asked Jon if he would with the vise grips pull those suckers out as everytime this old timer tried it he would faint. Jon set out to explain to him that they were actually screwed into his bone and no way would they come out by pulling them. I don't think the Doc was too happy with our "hero" cowboy. Can you imagine?

Saturday, November 28, 2009

14"x18" Oil Painting
I have finished this painting after several days of work on it. It is from a stream SW of Dubois and one of the forks of the major tributary west of Dubois of the Wind River. A very special place and teeming with trout. So named for the warm springs that feed into the creek and are such that it keeps the Wind River from freezing during the winter for up to 15 miles east of town.
This is a great time to be reflective on what it means to be Thankful. We had a great Thanksgiving with my wifes parents the only family that was able to make the trip to Dubois. That didn't hinder the intake of food in the least. We were as stuffed as the turkey we stuffed. The weather was great for travel if even a little too mild for this time of year.
Reflecting back on this year it was a time when I could really say for sure that I had beaten cancer after a 5 year battle with my last surgery this past spring and even though I messed myself up with a nasty fall this fall my heel is healing and I will have the rods and pins removed this coming week. I still feel so fortunate with the health I have struggled with just in the fact that our God has blessed me with a wonderful family and I have been able to fight through things. Whenever I got a little down the past several years all I had to do is look at a number of others around me who are having a far tougher time than myself. We had a great year in our gallery and I have been able to make a living with my art for many years.
We held our annual Gallery Holiday Show yesterday and although attendance was down a little from previous years we had good sales. [Check out the Silver Sage Gallery blog]
Yes. I do have a lot to be THANKFUL for.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The 2-Shot show also has a number of purchase Awards associated with it. This will be an entry for one of those awards.
10"x20" Oil Painting
Along with my Yellowstone series paintings I have recently been working on I have done several paintings for the upcoming Natl 2-Shot Goose Show in Torrington, Wyoming which commences the second week of December. There is no fee for artists attending nor commission taken but they do require a painting for their auction of which the artist still receives 50% of. Quite a deal. This is my just completed painting I am submitting for the auction.
12"x16" Oil Painting

Saturday, November 21, 2009

18"X24" Oil Painting
I have been trying to decide just when this painting has been brought to completion. I have spent the last 4 or 5 days thinking it was only to go back and do a little more work on it. I think this should do it though.
Many times Elk can be found just off the hiway that runs the valley of Jackson Hole and it is a pleasure to watch Elk on the Antelope Flats area. Here a Bull courts his harem that he has gathered with much work and perseverance as evening approaches after a rain shower that has mists coming off the canyons that skirt Mount Moran. [Mount Moran was named after Thomas Moran the artist that accompanied one of the earliest scientific explorations to this area and Yellowstone and from this trip began the idea of National Parks that we so cherish in our country and world today.

16"X20" Oil Painting
I have just completed this oil that I have been painting off and on along with 5 other paintings the past few weeks. They all seem to be at the point of completion about the same time.
It seems that my blog comment has been discombubalated[is that a word?]Hopefully I have it fixed and do appredciate all comments on my work.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

This is a just finished Oil Painting, 12"x24", Buffalo River Moose.
It is a scene from Moran Jct where the Buffalo River emptys into the Snake River and rather than show off the Tetons to the west I have focused on the cottonwoods and looking east towards the Mt Leidy highlands.

I dug this old painting out of my "Maybe Someday File" and reworked it a little. I think it is now presentable.
It is a scene along the Green River in western Wyoming NW of Pinedale, Wyoming.
ON THE GREEN RIVER 10"x20" Oil Painting

Saturday, November 14, 2009

I have actually been fighting with this painting way more than I do with many of my pieces. The landscape was no problem but I have wiped out and added to the elk a number of times. I still wanted to keep them in here as I think they added to the scene and were needed to use the large lighted space on the left.
This is an Oil Painting 12"x24" and another of my Yellostone series I am working on. The setting is near Madison Jct east of West Yellowstone, Montana and is an area where elk can easily be found particularly during the rutting season. I spent quite a bit of time this past September following a lone bull who seemed to be pretty large but I am guessing he was getting along in age as he couldn't seem to gather any cows. There were several other bulls around with large harems but this fellow one morning had either stole or found several cows and a calf to call his own. I'm betting he didn't keep them long.

Friday, November 13, 2009

In continuing my Yellowstone series, I am currently working on 5 different paintings. Several are now nearing completion and I think I am pretty well finished with this Oil Painting, SNAKE RIVER GRIZZLY. It is 12"x24". I actually used the area just outside the south gate to Yellowstone as my background. This is along the Sanke River bottoms and I have used the north end of the Teton Mountains as a background. These are the most fabulous meadows and river bottom habitats and make for the greatest source of inspiration and painting opportunities. We spend quite a bit of time in various seasons here and this is not the first time nor will it be the last time I will use this area in paintings.

Monday, November 9, 2009

I have been working pretty diligently on this Oil Painting, BEAR CREEK MORNING, 22"x28" image size and will be my entry for one of the Purchase Awards at the Two-Shot Show in December. This is the larger award which I won last year so am trying to make it two years in a row. For those who follow my blog you may recognize my love of Bear Creek which is so spectacular in the fall with such great compositions and contrasts of color and value of Dark Spruce and light enhanced Cottonwoods. Particularly in the evening and mornings.

Friday, November 6, 2009

I have just completed this 16"x20" Oil Painting, FIREHOLE FALL and is one of a series of paintings depicting Yellowstone National Park that I am currently working on and really excited about. Its wildlife and scenic wonders. This painting is from along the Firehole River just south of Old Faithful where the Firehole River slowly flows snake like across meadows of golden grasses in the fall. Elk and Bison are abundant here and especially make a beautiful composition and detail to the fall scene.
The Firehole River was named by the earliest expedition into Yellowstone not because of all the hot water flowing into it but because of a Forest Fire that had just preceded the expedition that named it. It was caught in the fires of 1988 but is recovering remarkably and is as beautiful as ever.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

I have my new deck and cover pretty well finished thanks to my Gallery Pardner, Tom Lucas who is a master carpenter. This was the project that innocently left me to my present demise. Crutches and all. It is sure a great addition to the studio though.

Friday, October 30, 2009

I have put the finishing touches on this Oil Painting I call, DOWNS MOUNTAIN. It is a 9"x12" Oil Painting and is a view from several photos I took earlier this fall from Horse Creek looking towards the Wind River Mountins and Downs Mountain which is over 13,000 feet elevation and is the location of the northern most glaciers that make up the largest continuous glacial fields in the continental United States.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

I have just completed my first painting since my injury and am amazed at how long it is taking to do art under the circumstances I find myself in. Pretty uncomfortable. We take so much for granted when things are rolling along. It is surprising to me that something as simple sounding as a crushed heel can create such problems. I have several other paintings started but am just happy to be able to post this piece. It is a painting of Yellowstone from some photos I took earlier this fall and thought I would add in the snow. The scene is of the Midway Geyser Basin and I call it "NOVEMBER1 AT MIDWAY". The painting is 12"x24" Gouache watercolor

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

An update on myself.
Am in Casper again and got checked out yesterday by the Orthopedic Surgeon and said everything is looking good. Will be back in 4 more weeks for more x-rays and another two weeks I get put back to sleep again to remove screws then back to cast. Worst part is I get to put no weight on foot till middle of January so will be improvising a way to get back to painting. Have several ideas but am sure experimentation is in the immediate future. Had to cancel out of a show this past weekend and am trying to figure out how to do a big one first of December.
Thanks for all the e-mails and good wishes from everyone.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I apologize for getting back to my blog after an extended absence.
I had a pretty nasty fall last week while doing a bulding project on my studio and home. Seems I have pretty well crushed my heel and partly crushed a vertebrae. Ended up in the emergency room in Lander and yesterday in Casper where I Have now been sent home to get the swelling down befor probable surgery next week in Casper. I have been told that I can pretty well forget this fall and maybe most of this winter. First bone I have ever broke.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Apparantely I have been given the Kreativ Blogger award from Diane Marshall. Thanks Diane. Now I am trying to figure out how this works. I notice when Diane posted what she was to do with it she had 7 artists to whom she passed it on to. and by clicking onto their names-their blogger sites came up. Guess I don't know how to do that so I will post the 7 names that I feel have been particularly helpful and to who I think have special painting passion for their work.
First I am to list 7 things about myself.
1. My college background is in Biology and Art. Biology in the sense of wildlife habitats and the ecology of wilderness.
2. In my early work life I did Highschool textbook illustration and a College Botony book on Paleo-Botony.
3. I once worked in a print shop doing art layout and design.
4. In highschool I cowboyed and worked in the mountains at a church Camp.
5. I have a wonderful wife, Two daughters, 6 Grand children and 2 Great Grandchildren.
6. I have a great love for my creator and a passion for the life I lead.
7. I am terribly alergic to Peas, Onions and green peppers.
7 of the Blog Artists I have come to really appreciate. Does this have to be only 7?
1.Gwen Bell, who has such great talent and a wonderful means of expressing it.
2. Peter Brown another very gifted artist who has wonderful insight and knows where he is going with his art.
3. Liz Holm who has such courage and does the most amazing work with all she has going on in her life.
4. Leslie from Dragonfies. A Photographer who has such a great way of expressing her love of the desert and its creatures.
5. Sheila, the Forensic artist who has such energy in both her life and in her art. It is contagious.
6. Candace Moore, a student who is doing the most marvelous art work and still seems like a true human being. She will be heard from.
7. Holly Bedrosian, Such talent and seems to be a very poised young woman. She is doing great things and is being heard from.
All these folks are an inspiration to me. I could list others but had to settle for 7. And I categorize all these folks in the same category and certainly not No. 1 through No. 7

At the end of the quick-draw my wife and myself headed for Yellowstone and spent several days there. Research and working with the wildlife were a way of relaxing and enjoying ourselves after the art world of Jackson. We stayed at West Yellowstone and as the road from Madison to Norris is closed we essentially hiked and photographed the area from Old Faithful to West Yellowstone. We did go up the Norris road that was being shunned by the tourists thinking the shole roasd was closed and found the whole region all to ourselves and critters galore enjoying what critters without toursts do such as this Cow Elk and her two fawns enjoying a run through the meadow. I took 445 photos. Elk, Buffalo, Coyotes, Eagles, Geysers,and general landscapes. All great research for future paintings.

Finished and framed. Sorry for the reflections in the glass.
I drew #26 out of 32 artists for placement in the auction. Boy is that nerve racking waiting for your turn and watching a lot of art bidding out way lower than in former years. Guess it is the economy. There was a lot of art less than $1000.00 and that just doesn't happen. Mine went for $1300.00 and what with the bids I felt fortunate to receive that. The artists receive 50% of the bid so still not bad for an hours work.
well into the hour I am nearing the finish. My painting is of Mt Moran in the Tetons with changing Aspens. I did throw a doe deer looking out from the tree edges. It is a Gouache Watercolor.

This saturday was the annual Quick-Draw associated with the Jackson Hole
Fall Arts Festival that brings all the who's Who artists and collectors to Jackson. The Quick-draw began at 9:30 in the morning and 32 invited artists are given an hour to do a painting of their choice at the end of which those paintings are offered for sale in a well attended auction. Believe me the hard part is waiting your turn for the auctioning of your piece. We have to stand up on the stage and give a little speech then sit back and see what the public thinks of what you have done.
I shared space with Jim Wilcox, nationally known artist from Jackson who runs the Wilcox Gallery. Here we are after the opening bell working diligently away as the crowds look on.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Heiner Hertling working from a model who posed with his saddle and full cowboy outfit. The kids were pretty impressed with the whole day.
Other instructors were David Rankin and Mort Solberg, watercolorists. Nancy Foreman, Janene Grande and others with expertise on promotion and marketing.

Master artist, John Seerey Lester working on an oil depicting a male Lion.

Wanda Mum, who I have known as a wonderful wildlife artist in past years is working on a Landscape. Another beautiful job.

Jeannie McKenzie, another artist I have known for years is a well known national workshop teacher and here is working on one of her oils. A beautiful winter scene.

Mark Kelso, well known Landscape painter working on a beautiful painting of a waterfall.
The Susan Black Workshops are continuing this week and I thought it would be fun to post some of the instructors who are here this year.
Lee Cable, whom I have known and showed with in shows in past years and even accompanied on a pack trip a few years ago is a favorite every year as his wife, Pam is the head honcho of the workshops.
Yesterday the school had all their students at the Headwaters Center to watch as the instrutors did demonstrations for their and the workshop participants to watch and ask questions. Each workshop participant then took one student and worked with them during the day as a mentor. I think it was extremely beneficial to all involved.
Lee is doing an oil here of one of his horses. He works in Water Oils and does a marvelous job of it.

I have finished my Oil Painting BEAR CREEK SEASON 18"x24" that I have been working off and on for a month now. I love this area in the fall as it is spectacuar with Cottonwood, Aspen, Pine and Spruce that offers such high contrasts.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

I worked on a little gouache painting. It is a pretty neat area and old time ranch that is quickly becoming subject to the elements.

The Susan Black workshops are in full swing this weekend in Dubois and I was invited to go out with them the other mornig to do a little pleine aire painting. It was cold and about finishing time began raining but was great to be with other artists and to watch some of them work. Here is Heiner Hertling giving instructions to one of the workshop participants. There were about 15 of us that showed up this morning to paint the barns at the Wagon Box Ranch. John Seerey Lester had a group of folks just over the rise above.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I entered this painting in the State Audubon Show in Lander, Wyoming and have won 1st place in Oils with it. It is 24"x32" Oil Painting that I call the HUNTER AND THE HUNTED.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

After finishing the vignette I decided to do an oil painting using the full bodied Bull that I used in my watercolor. I added a couple of others and being in my cloud period I threw that in for a background and have come upo with this 11"x14" Oil Painting. It must have been a pretty good idea as I sold it off the easle befor I was half finished with it.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

This is a commission vignette that I have completed for a client in Michigan. It is a watercolor and is 11"x14"

Saratoga is an interesting little Wyoming town very similar in a lot of ways to Dubois, my home town. Was also once a thriving logging community with ranching and recreation as side ventures. Logging is now gone leaving it to ranching still along with some Dude activity and outdoor recreation. River Float trips are a big thing for fly fishing in summer with snowmobiling and cross country skiing in winter. The town does have a hot springs with a pool but most impressive are two 18 hole golf courses. The Saratoga Inn, a resort kind of place and the Old Baldy Club that have huge CEO style homes along with bungalow rentals that are frequented by who's who in America at different times. It is not uncommon to find Movie Stars and World celebrities flying in to town in Lear Jets to take in a few rounds of golf. They are seldom seen by the general populace as it is a rather well kept secret about who is in town and when.

Finished and framed up. I don't know about the mat I put on it but am stuck with what I thought would work and had brought. Several other artists were painting out on the sidewalk in front of the gallery.
The fellow in the black Cowboy hat standing is Steve Moulton who is from the Moulton family that have the famous, most photographed barns in the world with the Tetons in the background. Steve is a wonderfully talented singer [cowboy songs-not western but cowboy]His wife is a writer and has been in our gallery talking with my pardner, Tom Lucas about filming some more movies of him with his Indian Craft work. I ended up with one of Steves C D. It is great music.

I chose to do a landscape gouache paining of Aspens from a sketch I did the day befor in the Snowy Range. The colors are not this far along but I have an Artistic Liscence that allows me to push things a little.
We even got some hiking in. My wife, Vicki waiting for me to catch up on the trail above Long Lake at the foot of Medicine Bow Peak

This past weekend was the Miniature Show and Sale in Saratoga, Wyoming at the Blackhawk Gallery. We were there for several days of fun and work as we spent saturday along with other gallery artists painting the town and area for a special showing of those paintings. Friday night was the reception for the miniature Show and saturday all the artists gathered at Patti Lufkin's,[gallery owner] ranch for a cookout. She sure knows how to put on a feed and her hospitality is out of this world.
My wife and I did take some time out to drive up into the Snowy Range where I shot this photo of one of my favorite areas, Lewis Lake.

Monday, August 31, 2009

My good friend, Les Llefevre, arrived last night and so I had him on the trail today for Jade Lake. It was a good vigorous hike and a beautiful area to hike in.