Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Weekend Retreat

Last weekend I was invited to a little retreat to a cabin hosted by my cousin Terry and her daughter Jaime. There were 19 of us in all (including 5 children) and we were instructed to bring our sewing machines. Terry is an excellent quilter and we were to make 6 blocks each out of strips of fabric. The triangle in the middle was for our name since these squares will go into a memory quilt. We had such a good time, laughing, eating, sewing and catching up with family and friends that we are going to do this every year. Now that we have some experience in quilting, I'm sure next year's quilt blocks will be much more complex. I believe that quilting is an art form and you can get very creative with the fabrics.
These were the blocks for one of the quilts--very colorful!

I was very excited because it snowed while I was there. This is the view of the lake from the cabin.

I had to take my paints with me and I painted three small paintings while I was there. This is for Terry, signifying her landmark birthday with the cupcake (purple is her favorite color).

And this little painting was for Jaime.

In January, Kentucky was hit with a severe ice storm and I saw several trees that were broken on my journey to the cabin.

Another beautiful view from the cabin.

And now It's time to go back home to the hustle bustle of the work week!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My Kinstler Workshop Study

This is my study of the model on the first day of Mr. Kinstler's workshop. My goal was to make sure that I got my values right in addition to my light/dark pattern (the light side of the face versus the dark side). Mr. Kinstler wiped out the right eye with his thumb as I tried to remember to simplify, squint and paint exactly what I saw. In the 2008 workshop, I didn't even get far enough to get a critique so I'm looking at this as an improvement over last year (yes I am an optimist at heart). My focus wasn't to get a finished painting but to concentrate on what Mr. Kinstler was saying and to watch his demos and critiques of others in the class.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Art Student's League New York City

Last week I traveled to New York City with several of my friends from our Monday night Open Model Session to attend an inspiring workshop with Mr. Everett Raymond Kinstler. Mr. Kinstler is an amazing artist that has painted several US Presidents, John Wayne, Katherine Hepburn and Tony Bennett to name a few. The workshop was at the historic Art Student's League of New York City. This is the second time I have made this journey and I do feel that I have grown as an artist since the first workshop and hope that I'll continue to learn, improve and evolve as an artist.
Since I haven't painted anything in a little while, I'm sharing a few pictures of my trip. I have hundreds of pictures but most of them are of works of art from the Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET), The Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) and The Hispanic Society of America in Harlem. I've narrowed hundreds of pictures down to only 12--a very difficult feat.
I was so excited when we approached New York City that I had to take a shadow shot of our plane, the clouds had to be just right!
This is the famous Statue of Liberty, I've only seen it via the air.

The Big Apple--isn't this awesome?

Can you tell we were ready to eat some New York Cheese Cake? This small piece fed 5 of us.

This is me at the gates of The Hispanic Society of America. There were beautiful paintings there by some of my favorite artists.

Inside The Hispanic Society of America Museum. You can see a small portion of the gorgeous paintings and sculptures.

Here I am getting ready for my workshop, packing all my "stuff". Our hotel was less than a block away--very convenient.

Inside our classroom at the workshop. There were about 40 participants in two rooms so needless to say it was cozy but lots of creative juices were flowing.
If these walls could talk. . .
The famous and bright Times Square.
My absolute favorite--Central Park, Mall area.
View of the city from Central Park.
Thanks for joining me on my trip and if (I mean when) I get busy, I'll have more paintings to post.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Winter Forest

I had a few goals in mind before starting this painting:

one day to paint it


pile the paint on

subject matter was trees

So I jogged over to some trees next to our house and snapped a reference picture and began painting. It was such a beautiful day with a gorgeous blue sky. I really had a good time sloshing the paint on with my palate knife and used my brush a little. Every once in a while I would lose a glob of paint but eventually found it, in the wrong place of course. The painting is a 30" x 40", much larger than usual. I am going to try to step out of my comfort zone in 2009 and do more of these challenges.

I have entered my painting in the ART WORKS 2nd Annual Members Fine Art Exhibition from February 13 -27, 2009 at the Gallery at 916, 916 State Street, Bowling Green, KY

Please see the exhibition if you get a chance, we have so many talented artists in our area.

30 x 40
Rhonda Hartis Smith © 2009