Thursday, July 28, 2011


I will be doing a demos next weekend (Aug. 6, 7) at Southwest Gallery during the Summer Art Festival. This is charitable fund raiser for the Dallas Area Parkinsonism Society and proceeds from the raffle will go to the DAPS. Gallery artists have donated their work to help raise money and you can help by purchasing raffle tickets which enters you in a chance to win one of the donated paintings.

About a dozen artists will be on hand both days doing demos in different parts of the gallery. I will be doing a demo each day and 100% of the proceeds from my demos will go directly to DAPS. This is a terrific opportunity to watch several demos in a single day and raise money for a worthy cause. Other artists whose work will be in the raffle and may be doing demos include Jonathon Hardesty, Fran Di Giacomo, Clinton Boyles, Tony Bass, Mary Kay Krell, Bob Hogan, Lynwood Bennett, John Austin Hanna, Laura Lewis, Manuel Garza, George Kovach, Ann Hardy, Paul Walden, Kay Walton, Mark Whitmarsh and Tony Saladino.

For more information go to

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


"Copper, Gold and Green" 8" x 10" oil/canvas

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This still life is the latest Ebay auction offering starting today. It will be available for about a week. I've added a small bonus for those purchasing a painting from my Ebay store. In addition to the painting and at no additional cost I'm including a table easel. No reason to stick the painting on a shelf until your frame arrives. Throw it on the easel and display it immediately.

I display paintings like this all the time in my studio. It provides me the opportunity to glance at a painting as I move about the studio and usually if there are any problems with the painting they will jump out at me. I am always looking for trouble spots in a painting which is why I will finish a painting then immediately put it in a closet or turn it around so I don't see it for a while, usually two weeks. Then when I look at it again problems will glare at me and I can fix them.

By displaying them on the easel I want to see if the painting will grow on artist-to-painting bonding experience if you will... and if it does I will be sad to see it go. No tears mind you, but sadness for sure. That's why I really enjoy watching a collector make the connection to the art because I know how they feel.

Friday, July 15, 2011


"Farmhouse" 8" x 10" oil/canvas

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I painted this farmhouse en plein air about six months before it was demolished to make room for a new store and gas station. It was so typical of the farmhouses of the area with the stone walls and tin roof plus the red barn to the side of the house was a killer on its own.
I just couldn't get a good view of the barn from the highway where I had pulled off to do the painting. I can't tell you how many people honked at me as they drove by at 70 miles per hour plus. As if honking was going to inspire me to do a better painting or maybe they were just hoping I would flinch and totally screw up. Either way I showed them a thing or two by completing the little booger in spite of all the racket.

This painting will be on Ebay for a week then it is gone forever. I've sold the last two paintings so I'm hoping for the three-pete. The problem is going to be when paintings don't sell. I've made a promise to myself that at the end of the year I'm going to take all of the non-selling Ebay paintings and destroy them. I have time to think this one over. I'll get back to you on that.

Friday, July 8, 2011


"Day's Done" 8" x 10" oil/linen

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"Day's Done" is my fourth Ebay auction offering. Spurred on by recent sales success on Ebay I am going to continue offering a new painting each week until the end of the year. Then when I sit down to make plans for 2012 I'll decide if the program will continue. I gotta say watching the auction is a little addictive.

"Colorado Hillside" sold on Ebay last week. Watching the bids come in was a lot of fun and I'm sure the painting will make the collector very happy.


I posted this painting last week right after I finished painting it.

The painting is of the "Lighthouse" which one of the famous rock formations in the Palo Duro Canyon in west Texas. I knew when I did it I was not happy with the slopping hill going to the left from the Lighthouse. I felt it was lacking character and it was taking the viewer's eye away from the main rock formation. Deep down I also know that people who know this formation know that hill does not exist as I painted it. I also felt the sky was too blue for this to be a late afternoon, almost dusk time of day.

I do not know about anyone else, but after spending twelve hours or so working on a painting I tend to look past the flaws because I've got so much time invested in it I almost want to convince myself that it is a good painting, even if it has problems. For that reason, when I finish a painting I put it away out of sight for at least a week then put it back on the easel and look at it with a critical eye.

For one thing I want to see if the things that bothered me initially still bother me. In this case the answer was yes. So now the decision becomes do I fix the problems or does my garbage man have another free painting to take home? Today I chose to fix the problems and the new painting is below.

I hope you agree with my fix. I reworked the slope by adding rocks, bushes and cactus which is more in keeping with what is actually there. By breaking up this slope it keeps the viewer's eye from sliding away from the Lighthouse. I also reworked the sky by adding lots of greens and yellows into it plus some purples and reds toward to lower portion to give it that west Texas dusty sky feeling. I think the changes in the sky really help establish the time of day I was going for. I punched up the yellows and ochres in the cliff going from the Lighthouse to the left to add more of a late afternoon feel.

Being self-critical of one's work is just as important as knowing what colors to mix. Scott Christensen has a great quote when referring to doing large scale paintings. He says, "Ugly is one thing, but big and ugly is bad."


"Taos Mountain" 24" x 30" oil/canvas

Every artist, me included, has paintings they have done that are just more special than others. This painting "Taos Mountain" is one of those. In the first place it hangs in our home and is not available for sale because it is my wife's favorite painting. I took it to a gallery once for a show and you would have thought the earth had stopped moving when my wife saw the empty spot on the wall.
Needless to say, it is back home and back on the wall never to be removed again.

The other reason it is so special is because it is a constant reminder of the trip we took with our in-laws, Alan and Mary, to Taos several years ago. The trip included plenty of sight seeing, fishing, a white water rafting trip and a hike up the back of Taos Mountain.

This is a studio piece done from photo reference. I would love to go back and spend a week just cranking out one plein air painting after another.

Friday, July 1, 2011


"Lighthouse" 24' x 30" oil/canvas

Today is the final day to enter the American Impressionist
Society show/competition. Leave it to me to wait until today to start a 24" x 30" painting to have something to enter. I guess its the illustrator mentality in me that waits until there's a deadline to get down to business. I've been wanting to do this painting since April when I last visited Palo Duro Canyon. My fall back position is I had a three man show in May and I've been kind of pooped out ever since.

I have spent the summer trying to get new work to the galleries, but I just haven't been happy with anything I've done for about two months. I'm hoping this painting is the kick in the rear I need to push me forward. I've hit a plateau of sorts artistically and I'm trying to sort out what it is I want my work to say. I've had this conversation with myself several times and it always leads to discovering new things to do to improve my work. Let's collectively cross our fingers...toes count as well...and hope I come out on the other side of this self-interpretation excercise a better painter.