Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Beijing in the rain


I arrived at Beijing in the rain. This morning I walked on the street, everything is crispy clean. This erases my concern about the air quality in this giant city. I hope it can keep this way during our painting trip. My mother is doing greatly. She is in good health and practicing her recently accepted Catholic faith, which gives her peace in mind. I have pulled out my colors and set up my easel in my tiny bedroom. I will start painting very soon. I have adapted this super unstable life style. Time, locations, culture, and languages are so illusive. I feel I am living in a big dream. I must admit that this year is a more difficult in my art career. Being an artist, it needs not only talent, inspiration, and creativity, but also courage, patience, and tenacity. The latter is a way more important.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

"My China trip starts"

I am leaving for China this afternoon. I will stay with my mother in Beijing for about 10 days. Then my China painting trip 2015 will start. I am looking forward to meeting my team and have a wonderful two weeks together, painting and sightseeing. Life is so dramatic.

I took this photo about two years ago with my 2013 team in Guilin. It seems like just yesterday. We had so much fun. I can' wait to see the beautiful places planned for this year. For all the friends who are following me on the Internet. I will keep you posted and share our trip with you.

Monday, August 24, 2015

"Demo at Huntsville 2015 2" --- Sold

The floral demo went well. I was happy that all workshop artists have benefited from those three days. Now the workshop is over, and I spent an additional day visit more of my old friends here. My art journey goes on. I hope I will like my students, practice and progress.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

“Demo at Huntsville 2015 1" --- Sold

I am so happy coming back to Huntsville Alabama. I have spent 7 years here about 20 years ago. I left Huntsville as a rocket scientist. Now I am back as an artist. The city is the same and also changed greatly. I want to thank Huntsville Museum of Art for organizing this workshop, and thank all the artists coming from all over for painting with me. This is my first demonstration.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

"Demo at Bolivar 2015 2" --- Sold

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My second demo at Bolivar was a plein air one. I used this painting to show how I manage the perspectives. The painting shows the quietness of a small town. However in real life, this intersection was quite busy. Big semi-trucks make wide turns right in front of my easel. They seem coming right at me. I really don't understand why these big monsters are called "semi".

BTW both of my demos at Bolivar are still available.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

"Demo at Bolivar 2015 1" --- Sold

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I am now at a small town in Tennessee call Boliver. I want to thank Deborah Turner Brasfield for organizing my workshop  here, and thanks to artists from Tennessee, Mississippi, and Georgia for coming and painting with me. This workshop is a landscape one. I did this demo from a photo I took last year from Jeckyll Island, GA.


Thursday, August 13, 2015

"Yellow Rose Study 081215"


I did this rose study from life, but also referenced to one of the paintings that Richard Schmid did. The rose part is easy, but the whole abstract composition I am still having problems. Perhaps you have seen quite a few my rose paintings, do you feel that the compositions I used are rather similar and they are not rich enough? I admire Richard Schmid for many years, especially for his designs

I was asking my readers in my previous post. Do you prefer low key or high key paintings. By checking my Instagram, I got almost twice as many "likes" in comparison with my earlier low key painting. The result is obvious: Most people like high key. However, I am relatively weak in doing high key paintings. So more effort and time are needed.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

“Movement of Colors"

This one is a pure high key painting. I have been working in this realm for a while now, but have not really get the effect I really crazy about. So I will keep trying. This one is just another experiment. I know I like my low key paintings because they show much more drama of light effect. However high key does not show the dramatic spot light effect as well as low key. So why bother going this way. If you are high key painter, would you let me know why you like doing high key? I really need more inspiration to keep going this way.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

"An Alley"

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When you feel absolutely NOT motivated to paint, what do you do? After came back from the extremely beautiful Yellowstone National Park, I have spent two solid days on the phone trying to make an insurance company to pay my bill. I was amazed how the insurance industry expands your probability of running into a disaster from 0.001% (can be even less) directly into 100%. (I personally believe that being profitable by taking advantage of other people's misfortune is what we call "Evil").

With the above mindset, I painted the above painting. If you are not motivated to paint and you don't want the insurance company to ruin your career, you simply go to your easel, pick up a brush, and start to paint anything. You may throw away all you have learned: composition, value, all that crxp. You can see the painting I posted here is mainly about dumpster and trash cans.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

"Demo at Jackson Hole 2015 4" --- Sold

This is my last demo on the workshop at Jackson. The purpose of this demo was showing how I approach to paint medal objects. My key of painting metal is trying to use as much as transparent pigments and reserve the opaque colors for the high light area only.

This painting was sold on the workshop. However, I do still have a demo painting still available, which is a rose painting I did plein air at Durango CO. If you are interested in that one, please click here to get information and purchase.

Monday, August 3, 2015

"Demo at Jackson Hole 2015 3" --- Sold

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I am back home now. Yellowstone was breathtakingly beautiful. I took tons of photos. I hope some day I may paint from all of those beautiful references.

This painting was done on the 3rd day of my Jackson Hole workshop. Because I didn't have wifi in side the National Parks, I had to delay the posting of it. This is one of best floral paintings I have ever done. Painting orange colored roses was my first time, but I immediately fall in love with it. I also like the leaves. I don't know the name of those leave, but their color and shape are much of fun for painting. The cool green color of the leaves enhances the flower significantly. I just love it. You can see I hardly painted any rose leaves. Those flowers were from a grocery store. The rose leaves are all folded badly. I can hardly use them for the painting.

You may have noticed that my composition for these kind of floral demo is lack of variation. They are pretty much the same. I am aware of that, but I have do one thing at a time. I am concentrated on dramatize the shapes and texture of the flowers and leaves now. The time will come and I will progress.

This painting is available for purchase.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

"Demo at Jackson Hole 2015 2"

My workshop at Jackson has ended, and now I am vacationing in the Yellowstone National Park. Since no wifi and cell phone signal inside the park. I have been delaying my painting posting. Last night we stayed just outside of the park, so I got a few hours of online time.

It is the image of my second demo. It is grey, grey, and grey. This one was used to show basic painting process, so I didn't elaborate too much.

Friday, July 24, 2015

“Demo at Jackson Hole 2015 1" --- Sold

My workshop at Jackson Hole WY has started. I want to thank the Art Association of Jackson Hole for organizing this workshop at this super beautiful place. I want to thank Peggy and Gregg Prugh for their hospitality and kindness of providing lodging for me. Thanks to artists from all over for attending this workshop.

This is my first demo. Do you see the three value design in this painting? dark, light, and mid-tone.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

"Demo at Durango 2015 3" --- Sold

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The 3rd demo at Durango was a plein air painting in a rose garden. I showed how I re-organized all the flowers so they could form a composition I wanted, and how important of going slow and not over working. I saw quite many good rose paintings from that day's exercise.

After my Durango I traveled quite a few places. I have visited the Mesa Verde National Park, Telluride, Glenwood Springs, and just arrived at Jackson Hole WY. I was stunned by all the breath taken beauty of all those places.

Friday, July 17, 2015

"Demo at Durango 2015 2" --- Sold

My Durango workshop is mainly a plein air one. We have spent three days outdoors. This is my second Demo. I painted this in one of downtown neighborhoods. It happened being of one of the busy  traffic area. Many local people were curious about what we were doing in the streets. Even the local Newspaper came and reported our class. Durango is a lovely town. I like the culture here. People here are so bohemian, healthy, sporty, down-to-earthy, new-agy. What a wonderful place to live.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

"Demo at Durango 2015 1" --- Sold

Today is the third day of my workshop at Durango. I want to thank the Durango Art Center for organizing this workshop, thanks to Vicki and Will Coe for their hospitality and offering their lovely home for me to stay, and thanks to all artists for attending my class.

This is my first demo on the workshop. I just love the brass lantern. It is from France. I like its design a lot. The cherries are from one of the street. They add wonderful colors for this painting.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

"Vicki's House"

I am in Durango Colorado now staying with my friends Vicki and Will. Yesterday afternoon, I did this plein air painting in front of their house. It is a lovely place. I want to thank Vicki and Will for their hospitality. They make my stay very comfortable.

Monday, July 13, 2015

"A Lonely Rose"

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This is a small 6" x 6" painting I have not done for a long time. Even now I mainly doing large paintings, but it feels good doing small studies once a while.

Recently I put a video page on my website. My son Jonathan edited most of the them. He is pretty good about online stuff. I really appreciate he is helping me out. So please enjoy these videos as a snapshot of my art.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

"Grapes and Roses"

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Recently I have been testing of using painting panels from "SourceTek". I like the surface texture. It requires the artist to use more paint, but the resulted painting is much richer.

Monday, July 6, 2015

"Water Lily and Fountain"

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I did this plein air painting this morning. This is a test of using a limited palette: cadmium yellow lemon, alizarin, ultramarine blue, ivory black, and white. It was quite interesting. The limited palette really helped to obtain the color harmony, but it was too cool. I finally put some cadmium red light (the gold fish in the pond) to warm it up.

The painting is cool, and weather is cool as well. It was excellent day today. The temperature was 88 F with a cool breeze. I can't believe it happens in July at Austin, Texas.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

"Tangerines, Onions, and Grapes"

Happy 4th of July to All of You,

After I came back from Indianapolis, I was obsessed of cleaning up my studio. As a matter of fact, I have relocated my studio and office. I thought it would take me only a few hours, but it ended up I have spent almost a week. I did not realize how much junk I have accumulated even I consider myself a mindful and organized person. This is a modern disease. I think most of us live in trash piles and do not sense that. We just manage a small area we can function within a massive amount of trash. In physics, this is called the second law of the thermodynamics.

Now my new studio and office are barely functioning. I know I must paint, before I turn into a professional janitor. This painting started in February, (I didn't realize time goes by so fast). I have painted more grapes yesterday.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

“Demo at Indianapolis 2015 3"

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More roses, more color, and more abstract. Doing a floral as my third demo has become default now. This style is evolving. I feels the potential, and try my best to make it happen. This painting is still available. So I put it on Dailypaintworks.

I am back in Austin now. I have about  two weeks time home before my next workshop. More exploring and learning will happen to me.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

"Demo at Indianapolis 2015 1" --- Sold

I have arrived at Indianapolis three days ago. I co-juried the Hoosier Salon show with California artist Randy Sexton, and my workshop started this morning. I want to thank Hoosier Salon for this great opportunity of teaching at Indianapolis. Thanks to artists coming from over for taking my workshop. This is my first demo painting.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

"Three White Roses" --- Sold

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Since my white rose is still fresh, I did another rose painting. This painting is a little larger, 12" x 12" For this painting, I have documented the whole painting process by taking a series of progressive photos. I plan to make this document available on my website in the near future, so everybody can access to it. I can use this method to show how I paint roses. I need to learn how to do it. If you have information on how to do online teaching, please help me out.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

"White and Pink Roses" --- Sold

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I am in the mood of painting flowers. I did this rose painting with only one white rose. First I orientated it for the center of focus. Then I relocated it to the back and left side. I have learn the approach from Richard Schmid. It combines the bold abstract brush work and detailed realistic presentations. I really like this piece of visual music.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

“Demo at Lake Zurich 2015 3" --- Sold

Painting flowers is my 3rd demo. Having doing this kind of floral painting for a while now, I have started to see the potential for this approach. I used to consider flower is a part of my still life, but more and more I have made my floral painting deviate from my usual way of still life painting. The style and approach are all different from what I have been doing. I will investigate more on my floral painting to bring it to a higher level.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

“Demo at Lake Zurich 2015 2" --- Sold

This is the second demo I did at Lake Zurich workshop. You know the still life objects have their own personalities. In this setup, the bronze is showing the pride, and the brass is showing the support. I had fun painting them.

Friday, June 12, 2015

"Demo at Lake Zurich 2015 1" --- Sold


I have arrived at Chicago yesterday, and today is the first day of my workshop at Lake Zurich, IL. I want to thank Frankie Johnson for organizing this workshop and thanks to all workshop attending artists for coming and painting with me. My first demo involves all warm colors. Color harmony is so important. You don't need many colors to makes a painting colorful and exciting.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

"Rose Garden in Mayfield Park" --- Sold

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I went to the Mayfield Park again and painted this plein air floral painting. Different from my usual still life paintings, the flowers are much fresher and different kinds, and the leaves are in much better shapes.

It looks my full month of painting and learning will pause for a while. I am traveling again tomorrow and will teach a couple of workshops in a row. I will show you my demo paintings again. I hope you will not get bored with them. Life goes on, and we must do our best to survive. I will keep on painting and hope I can progress everyday. It does not matter how small the progress is, if we keep on going, we will see the difference.