Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Fractal - Ancient Mystic Fire

Ancient Mystic Fire
This is another in my series of Fractals that I am using as creativity exercises and as a way to sharpen my design skills by working with non-representational images where I have some control over the color and design.
This week I start painting again... I know you have all heard that one before.
Keep Makin' Art

A winter hike in the woods

I was in Rochester for Christmas this year. After a fine holiday I woke up early on Friday and headed out for a little wander. I found myself 10 miles south of the city at Mendon Ponds Park. I had walked a trail there many years ago famous for its birds. It is aptly called birdsong trail. In the gray morning light as I walked the old orchard trail I was thinking of renaming it Squirrel song trail. The squirrels followed behind me from tree to tree like shy children hoping I would drop birdseed treats for them. Once I had walked the loop of the orchard trail I headed over to birdsong followed by my now small army of squirrels! I found a flurry of activity in some brambles and got my camera out. I used my 100-300 zoom lens and hand held at 400 ASA as the birds were flittering in and out of frame. I was able to capture these two shots one is of a titmouse and the other a chickadee. My morning out walking in the cold was a wonderful way to cap off the holiday. I love the quiet (and the sounds) of the woods in the snow from the animals to the crunching of my boots it helps to center me.
Keep Makin' Art

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Indian Brook in the Snow.

I set out this morning in the pre-dawn light to photograph Indian Brook Falls in Garrison, NY. I have now photographed it in three seasons. I keep being drawn back to this lovely little subject. The early light helped me keep the snow from getting totally blown out and gave me the widest possible range of tones.

Thank You L.L. Bean

As I set out in the snow at 6:30 am to photograph Indian Brook Falls in the snow, I grabbed my trusty Bean's Rubber Moc's instead of my leather hiking boots. These little wonders worked as advertised. As I hiked into the falls the trail vanished into the swift running stream. Not wanting to miss the shot this morning... After all I had dragged my ass out of bed and drove an hour in the snow to get to this spot, I forged ahead. I was careful to stay near the edge of the creek. I let the water splash and dance over my feet and they stayed warm and dry! I am one happy nature photographer.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Last Week

Hello Fellow Artists-

Sorry for the lack of posting this week. I was mired in work. Projects, projects everywhere! I am cleaning off my desk and heading to the studio later today. I hope to have something to share with you then... NO Pressure or anything right?
The look in Ralphie's face in the picture is about equal to my mood the last couple of days. Hang in there and I'll get posting new artwork soon.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Sunday - Calla Lilies

I got up this morning and wanted to set up my studio gear and photograph Calla Lilies. Forgetting it was Sunday and the florist is closed I tried the Grocery store. The selection looked to be on its last legs. Still wanting to see these lovely flowers I decided to rework a shot I already done and that is what you see here. I hope these beautiful flowers brighten your Sunday as they have mine...
I am off to the studio to draw.

Keep Makin' Art.


Fractals at 1AM

I could not sleep tonight. I was tossing and turning... I went online for a while. Creativity as always helped. I created this fractal I am calling Creative Fire. Now maybe I can get some sleep.
We are getting a light dusting of snow tonight. If the light looks good early in the AM I will head to the park and see what there is to photograph. I may head back to indian brook and check out the waterfall in the snow. I will post my results here later.
Keep Makin' Art.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Another workshop image

There are greatreflections in this shot. I am thinking of having it printed pretty large on canvas. I bet it would look fantastic.


What a week

This was one of those weeks where work won over art. Everyday I had a meeting after work. either with my boss or with vendors doing work for us in new locations. I was dragging by Friday night. Hence no posts since Thanksgiving weekend. Shame on me.
I have however started going thru the images from my workshop in October and found a bunch more to work on. Here is a preview. I have to get caught up on my personal life today and run errands, but tomorrow is studio time. We are supposed to get a light snow tonight so I will be out with my camera tomorrow morning and then I hope to jump into the studio and work on a drawing I have planned. I'll post what I work on tomorrow night. Have a great weekend.
Keep Makin' Art!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

More Family Pics

We had fun taking portraits of Little Man A (Ansen) and his folks Jessica and Richard this morning. Even Maggie the family dog got into the act.

Happy Holidays and Keep Makin' Art!


Friday, November 28, 2008


Holidays are just more fun with a little kid around aren't they? This Thanksgiving our Niece Jessica and her Husband Richard and of course Little Man A came to visit from Va.
Wenderina got this great shot of Little Man A at the park while the turkey was cooking. Then after Dinner we had fun playing the mandolin. All in all a great day!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


To all of my family and blogging friends. I wish you a safe and happy Thanksgiving. Enjoy this time with your family and loved ones. Please also take a moment to think about those less fortunate than us. Even in these troubled times we have so much to be thankful for.
Safe travels and a wonderful holiday!
(To my Canadien friends I hope this greeting finds you safe, warm, happy and with the people you love.)

Monday, November 24, 2008

Hat Boxes - Painting

Wenderina took a picture of some hat boxes in an antique store on Cape Cod and tasked me with painting them. Here is the result. I am pretty happy with it.
Keep Makin' Art,

Cape Cod - Art

One of the things I love about Cape Cod as an artist is that any where you go you can find art to be photographed or painted. I saw these four jars outside of an antique store in Barnstable and I just loved the composition. All I had to do was come back when the light was right. I picked a cloudy day to get the most saturation and detail. Then all I had to do was let this New England scene speak for itself. I just love this image for its balance and simple lines.
Keep Makin' Art
PS - I worked on a painting of hat boxes Wenderina photographed while on the Cape this summer. I will finish it this week and post here.
Happy Thanksgiving!

Stream - Harriman State Park

I have always been drawn to streams. Water running over rocks just makes me want to set up my tripod and take picture after picture. I know these shots can be overdone. I have been accused of that several time in my life. My answer to that is I like them and I will continue to shot them because they make me happy. However once I got the technical hang of shooting these images without having them too contrasty with blown out white water I got more selective. I now look for what can make the image special. So not only does the image have to have rocks and running water. Now it is about color, I look for the reflections of the trees and surrounding countryside to make the image interesting. Next I look for the best composition. I am now at the point where I will go out for a few hours and if the shot is not there I will leave it alone. I am not disappointed when this happens because I have learned more about the area I want to shoot and have spent a quiet morning in in the woods. What could be better.
Keep Makin' Art

Sunday, November 23, 2008

All Talk

Yesterday I spoke bravely of going out in the cold and shooting this morning. Well I decided to keep to the confines of my warm studio today. First of all it looks like a bomb went off after I gathered all the images for my portfolio review at CCAA. So it needs a good cleaning. Also I want to paint a Little once I decide what to work on. If I get anything done. I'll post it here tonight.

Keep Makin' Art

Scituate Harbor

This painting is of one of my favorite places. Scituate Harbor on the South Shore of Ma. Not far from Cape Cod. It is a great little New England harbor town. I just loved the red fishing boat and the red cottage roofs. I need to go back and spend a day shooting the buildings, lighthouse and the harbor. Maybe this spring I'll make the trip.

What do you like to paint or photograph. I find I am always drown back to the same places and that is ok. The more you know about a place the better you can plan to be there when the light is just right.

Keep Makin' Art

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Winter Art

I will be the first to admit that Autumn and Summer are my favorite and most productive outdoor art months. However this morning I was driving upstate and it was bone-chillingly cold. There was a great sunrise and just a hint of frost on the ground. I suddenly wanted my camera. I went back and found these two shots that were great results of getting out early on cold mornings, shooting and then editing the pictures in the comfort of my studio with a worm cup of coffee. Perhaps tomorrow morning I'll go take some shots. The take-away from this post is to make the most of the artistic opportunities the world presents to you. Everyday there is a chance to make great art.

Keep makin' art.


Friday, November 21, 2008


People often ask me... "Why watercolor?" I have asked that too on occasion. I think I could and someday will be a great oil painter. After all the process of laying the shapes and the darks first and adding the details and highlights seems like a natural progression and the idea of having months to get a subject just right seems wonderful... So why watercolor? First and foremost it is the luminous quality of the light and color. I was drawn to watercolors long before I started painting. Watercolor is fast and exciting. You are always working on the razors edge between a masterpiece and a total mess. It is a curious mix of planning and freedom all at the same time. Once I finally decided to try it and watch two colors mix, mingle and dance on a sheet of 140lb. cold press paper I was hooked for life. Watercolor is controlled chaos.... and what could be better.

If you have always been afraid to try watercolor I say give it a try. You'll get hooked!

Keep Making Art,

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Cape Cod Art Association

To Quote Sally Field "YOU LIKE ME.... YOU REALLY LIKE ME!"

Hi Everyone-
I was notified today of my acceptance as a juried artist member in the Cape Cod Art Asociation. This is something I worked on (and as many of you know) fretted over for a while. So as you can imagine I am Giddy! Thanks everyone for your support!

If you find yourself on Cape Cod in the near future you'll be able to some of my work for sale in the gallery!

Keep Making Art!

Sunday, November 16, 2008


I decided to try sketching some figures in Ink and Watercolor. I really like Karin's figures in museums looking at paintings so this is my first attempt at it. I will keep posting them here. I have have also been toying with the idea of taking a figure drawing class.

Keep Making Art!


Fall Reflection

I was revisiting some shots from a couple of years ago and found this simple composition that I had ignored at first, but the reflected color really makes this photo pop. I am glad I went back thru the images from this days shooting.

The message here is to save the stuff you are not sure about and take a look later. I normally trust my editorial instincts and edit pretty brutally... but I do save some that are maybes and sometimes they turn out to be winners.

Keep Making Art!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Wait #2

Hello Friends-
Today I am working on some more fractals. My Photo portfolio was reviewed yesterday at Cape Cod Art Association. Now I wait.... for the answer to both reviews (painting and photo) to be sent back with my portfolios. I hope to hear by mid week and will let you know as soon as I know. In the meantime I have been a bit under the weather with a cold so tramping through the woods with my camera is out of the question. I will work on fractals and perhaps a small watercolor this weekend. I'll post anything I work on Sunday.

What should I call this fractal? I am thinking of Creative Spark.

Keep being creative,


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I was Wordled

Inspired by my Fractals my wife, the lovely and talented Wenderina, set out to find a way to do "fractals with words" and created the wordle on top of the right column of my blog. Thanks sweetie! I love it.

You can create your own Wordle at

Keep being creative!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

The Wait

In the words of Tom Petty....
"The Waiting is the hardest part." Friday my painting portfolio was reviewed for membership in the Cape Cod Art Association. I feel really good about the pieces I sent, but the time between the review and when the notification gets to my mailbox is when all the negative thoughts start creeping in. So I am keeping busy. Next Friday my Photos are going to be reviewed too so the process will start all over again.
Even with the stress involved in putting yourself out there and having your personal artwork judged I still recommend it. I have been forced to look at my work in a different way. It will help me as I create new pieces.

Keep Making Art!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Another Fractal

Here is another Fractal image. Creating these is somewhere between math class and using an etch-a-sketch except in color. Give it a try.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008


Well so much for National Blog Posting Month. I spent the night working on a friends computer and totally forgot to post anything yesterday.

Here is some more of the pampas grass I shot on Sunday.


Sunday, November 02, 2008

A Good Mornings Work

Hello Fellow Artists:

I left the house as planned around 5:30am so that I could get to Indian Brook in Garrison, NY at or before sunrise. I was cutting through the park on my way to the Bear Mountain Bridge, when I saw the must wonderful pre-sunrise glow silhouetting a small island of trees in Cedar Pond. Seeing that I had enough time. I pulled over and grabbed this shot. As far as I am concerned the morning would have been a success even if I had not gotten off another shot.

I then continued my journey to Indian Brook. Making a note that I must go back to the National Audubon Society preserve at Constitution Marsh which shares the same parking lot. I may need a longer lens when I do that as Bald Eagles have been seen nesting in the area and that is one shot I want to get. The short hike to Indian Brook Waterfall was well worth it. It was beautiful in the dim morning light. The flat early morning light is good for waterfalls. It lends itself to long exposures of the flowing water and allows you to capture the real colors of the scene while holding detail in the waterfall.

Really happy with my mornings efforts I headed home for coffee and computer time to process the images. On my way back through another section of Harriman State Park I noticed that the sun was still at a low angle and the light was clear... Time for maybe some more image? I noticed Reeds and grasses growing around the ponds on my journey home and found my subject when I saw the grasses that were going to seed were back lit by the sun and had a great glow about
them and I could pick up some of the fall colors behind them.
All in All I could not have asked for a better morning of Shooting and I was home by 8:30 to boot.



Hi Everyone-

Yesterday I made my 101st post on artistic balance. Thanks for coming back and reading my posts over and over again. I am amazed at how time flies and what a great exercise this is for keeping me interested and motivated in my art even when work and life are very busy. I have big plans for my art in the next year so keep coming back! I love all of your comments and feedback!


Saturday, November 01, 2008

Tomorrow's Plan

Hello Fellow Artists:

Well with my portfolio(s) off for review at Cape Cod Art Association and having to wait several weeks before I have an answer on my application.... I asked myself this morning "what next?" There is a cool waterfall at Indian Brook in Garrison NY. I took the photo at left in the summer. I think I have just enough color left on the trees to get a fall shot maybe with reflections in the pool at the bottom of the falls. I'll pack up my stuff tonight and head out early tomorrow. Wish me luck.

4x6 for Riverspace

Riverspace - A local non profit community arts center is looking for donations of 4"x6" pieces for a benefit show and sale. Why not contribute a 4"x6"piece of your art to this worthy cause. I'll be sending one of the reflection shots from the workshop I recently took. Nyack NY is a great artistic town on the Hudson and is the birthplace of my favorite painter Edward Hopper.


Friday, October 31, 2008

The Big Day

Hello Fellow Artists:

Today is the big day! After months of agonizing over what to send and what not to send... I am shipping out my watercolor and photography portfolios for juried artist membership at the Cape Cod Art Association. I can only assume it s a little like putting your kids on the bus for the first day of school. Putting them out for the world to see.... OK a bit dramatic maybe, but you get the idea. I am really excited about this. Cape Cod has been one of my artistic touch-stones. I return there every year and spend most of my time painting and taking photos.

Wish me luck. I'll have an answer in a few weeks!

Keep making Art

Friday, October 24, 2008

Shout Out

Here is a Shout Out to our friend Laura. Who is taking her first painting workshop this weekend.

Have fun and be creative!


Another Misty Morning Shot

Here is a different Shot with a boat in the mist. I can't decide which I like more. I thing the exposure here is a touch better.... but the composition of the fist was pretty cool.


Thursday, October 23, 2008

Fisherman at SilverMine Pond

Another workshop image. I love the mist and the composition. I just wish there had been a little more light on the trees so they would glow a little. It does have a nice feel to it though.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Autumn Reflection

Hello Fellow Artists:

Here is one more image from the workshop. We had beautiful color and everything from water as still as glass to rippling waves.

What Should I call this one?

Photo Workshop Results

Hello Fellow Artists:

I have started going through the images from the nature photography workshop I took on Monday. Here are the first few. there are a lot more to review, but I could not wait to share some of them with you. The conditions were cool and bright. We had tons of the fall color and great reflections in the water to work with. I am thrilled with what I have gotten so far.

What do you think?


Sunday, October 19, 2008

Monday 10-20-08 Workshop

Hello All-

I just got back from a wekend visting a Friend in Chicago for the weekend with Wenderina. I am taking a Digital Nature Landscape Workshop tomorrow with Nick Zungoli.

I'll post the results of the workshop tomorrow night. It promises to be sunny tomorrow but close to a frost tonight. All kinds of opportunity for good shots!

Keep making art!


Saturday, October 04, 2008

Next Painting?

I photographed this the other night and will try to paint it soon!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Finished Painting

Here I am putting the finishing touches on the barn.

Barn Near Sugar Loaf, NY

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Roof and some details

In this layer I added the roof of the barn and some of the details. In real life the barn has a silver roof and bright green roof. I decided to make them more the same and pulled the green from a color that was already in the painting to help tie it all together.

second wash - Barn

Here is the foreground wash green and orange are mingled. The fence, tree and barn are left to paint.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Barn Painting - First Wash

Hello Fellow Artists and Art Lovers:

Here is the first wash on the barn. Sky is graduated wash of 'dirty cobalt blue'. I achieve this with a dish of palette scraps leaning towards gray. I charge a brush with cobalt blue and use that as my dark sky color. Is is very atmoshperic that way. at the horizon line I dropped cadmium orange into the wet sky wash and turned it upside down at a 30* angle to flow the orange up into the sky wash.

Next will be the foreground in a warm wash. followed by the barn in the mid ground and then details at the end of the week. The 5x7 test will be done then and I will decide what to keep and what to change in the "final painting". Sometimes the 5x7 tests are much freer and looser than the final painting and end up among my favorites.