Monday, March 25, 2013

"Demo at New Braunfels 2013 2" --- Sold

The second demo I did was with a black velvet as the background. I painted it completely black using transparent oxide red plus ultramarine blue. I did this because I saw quite a few students struggled when they deal with completely dark background in the previous day. As a matter of fact completely dark background has an advantage. It provides very high contrast to the foreground, which enhances the brightness of the center of focus. However, you really need a relatively large area in grey. Otherwise the center will look floating.

Friday, March 22, 2013

"Demo at New Braunfels 2013 1" --- Sold

After a few days of working on web design and got my Plein Air painting in China trip launched, I have arrived at New Braunfels, TX yesterday. My workshop here started this morning, and here is my first demo. I want to thank Mary McIntosh for putting this workshop together. I want to thank all the artists for attending. The weather is so nice. I really enjoyed coming back to Mary's place.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Announcement: Plein Air Painting Trip to China

If you have followed my blog posts lately, you may have known that I visited a few water towns when I was in China about a month ago. Now, I plan to go back there in the near future and paint plein air. First, I was interested in Wuzhen, but it didn’t work out. Now I have located another beautiful place called Zhuozhuang. I have asked a professional touring company to arrange a painting/touring trip for me. The time will be this coming September. Now I would like to share the information of this trip with you. If you have two weeks time this fall and are interested in going to China to paint, or simply touring a few beautiful places, I would like to cordially invite you to go with me.

Please check the website of my Plein Air Painting Trip to China. We will mainly paint in Zhouzhuang, and touring Shanghai, Guilin, and Beijing. I also have placed a link to this website on my blog and newsletter, so you can get the information at any time about this trip to China. I am very excited about this trip, and looking forward to painting together with you in exotically beautiful places.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

"Glazed Pottery"

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I have this glazed pot for a long time, but this is the first time I painted it. For some reason I always think this pot does not make a good still life object. However, when I actually painted it today. It wasn't bad. As a matter of fact, I kind of like it.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

"Zhouzhuang Street"

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I did this painting with my fragmented time for several days. I took the photo in a place called Zhouzhuang near Shanghai, China. I had some struggle dealing with cool grey colors when I painted this one. You know I like to use warm colors in my still life paintings, but I must learn how to control my cools without making the  color muddy. I have not achieved that kind of control yet. I will keep practicing.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

"Head Study 031313"

I went the "Bee Cave Painter" group and did this head study. Having not painted portrait for a while, I felt a little rusty. I concentrated on the value only, so be able to get some degree of finish look within 3 hours. So if you feel overwhelmed by the complicated subject matter in front of you, just work on the value. That is the most effective way to paint.

Monday, March 11, 2013

“Small Stone Bridge"

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This painting took me two days to finish. It is from a photo I took at Wuzhen, China. I feel more control on my grays now. How to do less but showing more is my goal. I didn't do much of details, but I want imply there are many going on. Wuzhen is the place I really want to go back and paint plein air there. However, I got some bad news. I was told that the Wuzhen authority does not allow artists to paint there, especially oil painters. They are worry about the oil paint may drop on the old structures causing irreversible contamination and damage. Well, that is it. But I am not giving up. I am looking for an alternative place. I will let you know when I find one.

Friday, March 8, 2013

"Melody of Metal"

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I usually do not paint only metal. I like to use metal as background to support fruit or flowers as the center of focus. But this time I used two metal objects. I don't have very bright color here, but the shapes and the high lights really give the drama of the painting.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

"Apple and Orange"

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"Apple and Orange", what a boring name it is. But it is the most genuine, most sincere, and most I have painted on this 6" x 6" panel. In today's art world, everybody wants to be creative, be different, be doing  something hasn't been done before. Well, let's take a break. paint some apples and oranges, and be down to the earth.

Monday, March 4, 2013

"Demo at Kinston 2013 2" --- Sold

I have come back from my North Carolina trip. This is my second demo at Kinston. The flowers are camellia.

I slept whole day yesterday and my energy comes back a bit. Tomorrow I need change my hat and go back to the company I left about two years ago (Wow, it is shocking, two years have been gone) to start a consulting contract. My schedule is so full, and it makes me wonder if there is something wrong on my path of these a couple of years. I want to spend more time on improving my art. But when I plan my time, somehow my painting always gets left out. The temptation of making a couple of more bucks, the obligations of my promises I made too casually, and opportunities I can't let go have become the major driving force of my daily life, and they overshadow my art. When I was in Cary, the owner of Waverly Gallery (where I did my workshop) Gary Bradley passed on me a book entitled: "Making Money is Killing Your Business" by Chuck Blakeman (Google it if you are interested in this book). I haven't got time to read it yet. However, it did make me think. I want to elaborate a little more. Making Money is not only killing my business, it is killing the world.