Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Solo Show


I am happy to announce my first solo show at the InSight Gallery in Fredericksburg Texas. It is a new milestone for me. Please visit Qiang's Solo to see the paintings in the show. It has been eleven years since I left my engineering career and became an artist. I have been experienced and learned a lot. My general feeling about these 11 years is appreciation. I have met so many wonderful people, got so many wonderful opportunities, and visited so many wonderful places. The only thing I want to say is THANK YOU. I am so fortunate.

Monday, November 28, 2022

Still life study 112722


I hope all of you have had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I have completed all my planned art business activities. Now I am in the learning mode again. With this still life painting study I have tried combining acrylic and oil together. I did my underpainting wash with acrylic inks, then I painted oil on top. I really like the acrylic inks. They are transparent and dry super fast. So I don't worry about the under painting darks contaminating my foreground colors. They are water based so I can wet my canvas with water and apply watercolor techniques. I just loved it. Applying oil on top of the acrylic has no problem. I have left massive areas of underpainting showing through to maintain an abstract quality for the background. I used a small amount of opaque paint to build the contrast of transparency vs opacity. Using a due light sources to make the colorless metal object colorful. It was so much fun going through the design process of this study.

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

My painting calendar 2023 is available


It is the holiday season again. Happy Thanksgiving to all of you. As usual I have made my painting calendar for the coming new year. You can browse all the images on my NEW website.

"I did not know you have a "new" website" you might have asked me. Well, now you do. About two weeks ago, I found all my images disappeared and some funny noises showing on my sites . My web host refused to help, but only requested more money. They also refused to refund my annual renewal because it just past the 30 days. I also could not download my sites to my computer... I felt being robbed. Many hours later, I have built a new website from scratch and transferred out one of my domains. It almost has all the info. You can check my workshop schedules, buying my videos and the new calendar, and most important, you can access the Apps. Please visit my new website. If it does not work, please copy-and-paste: . Please let me know if you think I need to improve this new site. Friends, no matter how old and no tech savvy we are, we will learn. Life can be improved with you own hands and brains.

Sunday, November 20, 2022

Sunset at the Block 1


I painted the downtown San Angelo (locals call it the Block 1) late afternoon on October 26, 2023. It was quite an experience. The perspective was not hard, but it was very time consuming to make all the buildings look right proportionally. The light was moving super fast and the bright sun was shinning right into my eyes. I was blind by the strong light and hardly could identify any local colors. At the last moment of the sunset. The colors was so beautiful, but the brightness of the light faded so fast and my palette got dark so quickly and it was hard to identify and mix the right colors. Can we really capture the genuine colors on a sunset painting with a plein air approach?  I doubt it. However, the easy part of sunset painting is the colors do not have to be "genuine". The color scheme is so simple. The chroma is high, and the local colors have been dominated by the light source colors. If you have painted a few times, you will find the freedom in this apparently difficult subject.

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Blooming with hope


A homeless woman stood nearby watching I painted this rose. She was so fascinated with excitement. Perhaps it was her first time seeing a plein air painter at work. She told me she had learned some art when she was in jail. She really liked it. But she had never practiced because life is too hard for her. She has no money and no place to stay. Only thing she got is cancer. My wife gave her a few dollars. She said she will go to the Dollar store and get some colors and brushes. She will make a painting before she die and will give it to her daughter who lives far far away. With her beautiful hope, she left the rose garden. I finished this small "mini pearl" painting for EPAT, and named it "Blooming with Hope".... I woke up in the night. It was cold and raining outside. I thought about that homeless woman. I hope she found a relatively warm place to stay, and art...That might be too luxurious for her. 

Saturday, November 12, 2022

Funky Chicken


I didn't know why I painted this one. I was in a plein air show and knew this wouldn't sell. I was in this so called "Chicken Farm", which is a artsy studio area. Everything here are so corky. I must have been in a whimsical mood. It was quite amusing when people saw me painting this. Much laughter went with my funky entertainment. I hope you can laugh as well when seeing my today's post.

Monday, November 7, 2022

Cool Clear Water


Waterlilies is always my favorite subject to paint in San Angelo. I love the International Waterlily Garden. Waterlilies give me endless freedom to design. I don't need to follow specific pads or flower to obtain the realistic presentation. I was looking for all the opportunities to combine multiple kinds of pad distribution patterns and involve different types of texture to create my composition. This painting has won two awards: the Waterlily Award and the 3rd Place of EPAT competition. I feel so fortunate and happy. I have made a video to document this painting endeavor. 

Sunday, November 6, 2022

A Quiet Morning

 I was late when I arrived at downtown San Angelo on October 25. Most of the artists there had already engaged their painting project a while ago, but I have a complete blank in my mind. I drove around several blocks, but I still could not decide what to paint. Finally I ended up to a location quite far away from the iconic downtown area. I did this small oil sketch. The scene is a little too empty, but the geometric design wasn't too bad. The lighting was pretty good, but it moved too fast. I think the true spirit of plein air painting is maintaining cool when you know you are completely out of control.

Friday, November 4, 2022

New YouTube Video: Painting on a Texas Ranch


I have made a YouTube video to document my ranch stay. Making video is my new endeavor. The media source is simply my and my wife's phone. I use Photos app and DaVinci Resolve to edit and cut. I got background music from YouTube. I am learning little by little to streamline the required time to generate the video. The monetization part is tricky. I have almost made it to earn a couple of bucks a month ago, but now I came back to zero since my channel does not have enough viewing hours to qualify. That is not important. The important part is to get my information to you. As a matter of fact, it has a lot of fun to generate videos. 

Thursday, November 3, 2022

It is just an urn


This outdoor still life was the last painting I did at my ranch stay near Junction TX. I was very comfortable with this subject matter. During the painting time, the light changed from sunny to cloudy, but it didn't bother me at all. As an artist, I constantly try new things, feeling I must go beyond my current self. Now I doubt this kind of mentality is right. Why couldn't we just simply accept who we are and be comfortable with ourselves?

Wednesday, November 2, 2022

"Beauty at a Texas ranch


It was a good day with perfect temperature. I did this oil sketch. Recently, I have been pondering how to compose landscape paintings "correctly". When I started painting many years ago, I concentrated on still life and portraiture. I really like the high lights on an apple or someone's nose as my focal points. However, I hardly see any high light spots on an landscape scene. So I have lost the charm I am always looking for. To get an exciting landscape composition has been a constant challenge for me. So far I have not find my favorite landscape compositions yet. I just let my whim lead me to any landscape compositions spontaneously. In other words, I have painting intuitively when I deal with landscapes. This makes my engineering mind very uncomfortable. This composition is still whimsical, but I will figure out and get enlighten eventually.

Tuesday, November 1, 2022

Gentry Creek


The second painting during my ranch stay was "Gentry Creek". I want to thank the ranch owner Stephen for showing us his property. It was a windy day. I managed to make the painting work under the windy condition. The pile of rock by the water was so beautiful. I really like the warm afternoon sun light against the cool purplish shadows. The color at the site was so rich, but I only captured a small portion of it. The painting experience at the Gentry Creek has implied that I still have a long way to go on my journey as an oil painter.