Monday, September 29, 2014

"Many Years Ago, There Was A..."

I have been to Beijing for about two weeks now. Almost everyday, I walked around the inner city capturing the glimpse of local people’s life. This one was shot in one of the Hutongs. The tour-guide on the tricycle is describing what was going on many years ago in this area. I may do a painting based on this photo in the future. I like the back light given a rich red glow on the tricycle. 

Friday, September 26, 2014

Beijing Hutong 2014 - 3

Grey is the color of Beijing. This is great opportunity for me. Although I have already spent quite a bit of time working on my greys, I am still not able to handle it in a controlled manner. Well, I have no choice, but keep going and keep learning. Click here to purchase.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Beijing Hutong 2014 - 2

I did achieved color harmony on my previous painting. However, I did not feel very comfortable about the warm tone for the cityscape in China. Today I have tried used much cooler tone. I used very few colors for today’s painting: ultramarine blue, transparent oxide red, and white, plus a touch of pthalo blue and red for the color  accents. I like the cooler tone much better. Click here to purchase.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Beijing Hutong 2014 - 1 (day one)

I started painting again. The conditions here are not ideal, but I can’t wait. This one is from a photo I took a couple of days ago. I used this almost monochromatic approach to achieve the color harmony. I don’t think it is finished, but I have to wait until the painting is dry to the touch to continue. Since I am using a medium I am not used to, there is a learning curve to cross.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Beijing Hutong 1

In Beijing, the old historical districts are called Hutongs. Many small houses and courtyards were clustered together along narrow alleys. I was born in one of those Hutongs. So yesterday I went to my birthplace. The courtyard was long gone, but the Hutongs where I spent my childhood are still there. The place was chaotic. So much construction going on. Old houses are disappearing, replaced by ugly modern structures. I passed this courtyard with a heavily decorated gate. A group of local people are chatting. They seem pretty happy.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Early Autumn in China

It feels like a blink. I am now standing on the streets of Beijing. This year I was not successful  in bringing a group artists  to China to paint. However, I still made it myself. After more than thirteen hours of flight I arrived in Beijing yesterday afternoon. Due the jet lag, I got up very early this morning. The weather is so great here. The cool breeze of early autumn feels so wonderful.

China is like a painting which has had too much color put on it randomly. Parts of it are so dramatic, and other parts the colors are getting muddy. Every time I come here, I always feel so excited, and so shocked as well. The modern looking buildings in this photo are actually an electronics flea market where I just bought a 3G data card so I can hook my my Macbook air to the Internet. The place I am staying has no WiFi. This is the only way I can talk to you. I will be in China for a month, and I will keep you posted about what I see and what I do. 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Richard Schmid 80 Years Birthday

If you ask me who is the best artist I consider. I will say Richard Schmid. I admire many artists, some are good at painting still lives, some are good figures, and some are good landscapes. However, if you ask who is good at everything. I will say Richard Schmid. I am very fortunate for painting with Richard a few times. They were very great and very informative. They have strong impact on my art. I am relatively a late starter in art, but study with Richard Schmid has significantly accelerated my progress.

Richard Schmid will be 80 years young in this October. Please join me and friends all over to celebrate his Birthday by participating the Global Birthday Card Party for Richard by the Village of Arts at Putney.

Thank you

Thursday, September 11, 2014

"Demo at Easton 3" --- Sold

For the third demo at Easton, I did not do a high key one. I feel I have some thinking to do about my high key approach. As a matter of fact, I have a lot of thinking to do in front of my entire art career. At the time you look at my art, I look at other people's art as well. I have found that making progress in art is so difficult. So many artists (including myself) keep painting the same thing. We like their works when we at the first place, but after we saw so many similar paintings, we start to get tire of them and stop following them, because we know they don't have any thing new to offer.

Why is it so hard to progress in art. There are several reasons. First of all, artists are human beings, they have their limitations. If we can do one or two things well in this short life, we should feel good about ourselves. Secondly, most of us are slaves of the all mighty dollar. We perform as puppets controlled by the market. I try my best to be mindful and live intensionally, but so many things are beyond my control. It sounds that I am complaining, but I am not. I am investigating and looking for potentials.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

"Demo at Easton 2" --- Sold

For the second demo I used that red Japanese lunch box. With the orange red rose and orange warm grey back ground, the painting has a warm tone. I use to emphasize that the contrast is the key consideration to make an interesting painting, but recently I pay more attention on unification and harmony.

I am back to Austin now. The Oregon + Maryland trip was enjoyable. Now I need several days to recover my "Qi" (or energy). I really wish I will sit around and do nothing for a few days. Who knows if that is possible. Last night's full moon was so beautiful. I was pondering "unification" again. It was amazing. It doesn't matter where I am, west coast, east coast, or in Texas, the moon looks the same. Perfect, and bright, shared by the whole world.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

"Demo at Easton 1" --- Sold

I am at Easton Maryland now. Today is the second day of my Easton workshop. I want to thank Easton Studio and School for organizing this workshop, and thank artists from all over for joining me and painting. This is very artistic town. I have heard Easton many years ago about the well know Plein Air Easton event. I am so happy to be here. This is my first demo.

Monday, September 1, 2014

"Demo at Springfield 3" --- Sold

This is the third demo. Now it gets more routine this third one is high key. However, I still feel my high key has not reached the level I want. I show my struggle right in front of my students. As a matter of fact, it is good. people see more genuinely how I paint. I made many mistakes and I try my best to solve problems.

Yesterday, Song and I flew 5 hours and arrived at Washington DC. Life is so surreal. At BWI, the rental car guy was very nice to me. He gave me a car with all kinds of advanced features. But I got so overwhelm of learning all the technology at the midnight, and not able to make the navigation system in the car to work. So I decided to use the GPS on my phone. In order to make the sound louder I tried to connect the phone speaker to the car via an auxiliary cable, but I could not find the jack to plug in. I ask the rental car guy. He told me there is no jack, but use my blue tooth to connect. I hesitated, I told him all my teeth are white, I don't have a blue one.