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Still working...


I really took on a challenge with this picture...kept saying to myself everything I retained from the recent workshop..."mid values" "cluster small shapes to make large shapes" remember "violet blue for distant hills....the "sky is usually the lightest part of a painting....

I do love the dramatic light that comes with turbulent weather on the high desert.
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working, working, working


Somehow I committed myself to several shows this summer...so I am madly painting to fill them. But it has been really fun, too. I am playing around with the "inner parts" of the color wheel as described by John Poon. In other words I am really working with complementary colors and muted colors. Having spent a week in Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, and Idaho when the weather was less that perfect did provide perfect subject matter for this muted pallet.
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"Global Raining?"


I don't pretend to understand global warming...but we have been getting some very unusual weather here...gray threatening days in June! Last week in Colorado it was storms and flooding...hmmmm. Well, despite the weather, again, I am drawn to the desert. Today is very overcast and very threatening...unusual for June. But I find I am more and more attracted to the moody weather. Of course, I actually like living in the sunshine of the high desert, but it is those dark, mysterious days that capture my imagination.
We all know that sunny landscapes sell...but one has to paint what one feels and today I feel the skies are in transition. (I did give a bit more color to the scene, just to spark some interest/hope?)
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Not ready for prime time...


At our workshop we were hailed and stormed out several days, resulting in a lot of painting from the other-head projector. This is one of those efforts...I am only posting it to emphasize that I think you "need to be there" to adequately paint a scene. This is of the California wine country. We will be there next month and I expect my work to be must better in terms of "sense of place."
I am not saying that all paintings have to start in the field...I am more of a studio painter...but I think the original notes, sketches, feel comes from actually being on site. Well, we will see if I am right...next month.
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Listening to John Poon...


Here is the first painting I finished after my workshop with John Poon...we camped two days later in Bruno Dunes, Idaho. I love this area... it is remote and it is high desert. That is heaven to me. I concentrated on using the complements of the primary in my value study...and worked on the blue violets in the background. I can already see John's influence on my painting.
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Back from a week in Colorado


I spent the last week taking a workshop from John Poon...wow...he is a great teacher. I am only posting one of the 10 paintings I did this week (right now) as I want to do some touch up on the others. But I can already (having spent some time in the studio today) see the influence of his instruction. He started his career as an instructor in the Academy of Art College (AAC) in San Francisco and his formal training and history as a teacher really shows. This little studio work (it was hailing outside at the time) is simple, but emphasizes his recommendations to me: remember distant hills are frequently blue violet...work on your mid values!
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