Sunday, December 27, 2009

Breakfast & Dinner

Like the coming new year's celebration, night brings both an ending and a beginning. I felt that to convey this feeling it was only appropriate to paint this scene. Dunkin' Donuts is usually associated with breakfast but can just as easily soak up the wild night before and Grotto Pizza is just as tasty at night as it is the next morning. The lights dance in the melted snow in this scene, making a very suburban and sleepy Bear, Delaware just as festive as Times Square.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Baby, It's Cold Outside

I can't think of a more appropriate treat when the snow is falling. I have a long drive to work every day so coffee is a must in the morning. When I'm working in the middle of the night, I'm drinking coffee. When my wife and I go out for the night, we get coffee to perk us up. The only time I'm not drinking coffee is when I'm drinking tea.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Perpetual Calendar Finished

I actually posted these on Facebook a while ago but I wanted to make sure everybody could enjoy. 

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Getting Stale

For as long as I can remember, I stop at Dunkin' Donuts most often when it's dark. When I was younger I'd stop by early in the morning on my way home from a party. Now, I stop by there at night on my way home from work to get my wife coffee. When I was thinking of ways to execute this week's painting, a nocturne seemed like the only obvious choice for me. I saw this woman inside the Bear, DE store looking out as if she was waiting for something.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Lehigh Cement

Every morning I drive through Baltimore to get to work. Every morning the light hits the Lehigh Cement tower just a little differently. I suspect it has to do with the pollution in the area, but pollution has a funny way of enhancing the color of the sky near the harbor.

I read this book by Paul Strisik recently and he wrote this passage about working from memory because it helps you better capture the feeling of a place and I placed more emphasis on my references than anything else. Working on a skill and evaluating ourselves over and over again is, after all, how we learn.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Chocolate Frosted

Who doesn't love a good chocolate-frosted doughnut? For a long time I would stop by Dunkin' Donuts every morning for breakfast. This was an obviously unhealthy tradition that I've been able to stop so it was a rare treat to pick up this doughnut early in the morning. Even the ladies now know my order when I walk in and before I even say anything. Now, to be honest, I chose a doughnut for the first painting only because I wanted to paint a doughnut. I love paintings of food so I gave it a go. This is painting number 1 in my Dunkin' Donuts-themed series of paintings and number 7 in my series of small weekly paintings. Mmmmmmm....

Sunday, November 29, 2009


An empty pair of men's shoes was a natural choice for me this Thanksgiving week since they had such powerful meaning for me. Dad's shoes after coming home from a tough day at work. The empty shoes of a fallen hero. A grandfather's shoes near the door after coming to visit (with presents!)  I could go on and on but ultimately it's the viewer who decides for themselves the meaning behind a visual impression. That can sometimes be the most beautiful part of a painting, how it makes you feel.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Pole Dance

My home office overlooks an old school that is used for some sort of adult education program. I've never really looked what the programs are but the sunlight at the end of the day really livens up the field behind the building. These utility poles get washed in a brilliant orange and the back of the shopping center behind it have these mottled streaks of blue and yellow as shadows dance on it.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Get In Line

We often have shoes in the hallway before the door and so when I was thinking about painting a row of shoes it was natural to position them in the hall. I was surprised by how green the shadows were when I really started looking at them. I have a tendency to correct incandescent lighting so it was a challenge to keep it as true to the color I was seeing as possible.

This is available for sale from the Rehoboth Art League Docents. All of the proceeds for this piece will go to maintain the buildings on the Art League's property.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Splenda Pig

I had the day off today and decided to use the time to get some more work in. I took the opportunity to finish a painting that is not part of this month's theme, shoes, and paint this small creamer filled with Splenda packets. We have a large collection of pig creamers and this one is definitely my favorite. This is painting three in my small painting project.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Busy Weekend

 On top of the paintings I've been working on, I've still got the calendar that I'm building taking up most of the dining room. Seeing as though Thanksgiving and Christmas are coming up I'm under some pressure to finish up and clean out the room. I finished lettering the months, applying Danish oil to the wood, and (mostly) screwing it together. The picture is what it looks like so far with the holiday tiles in the rails.


I committed myself to one painting per week, but there's nothing wrong with finishing two. Pedro, our Chihuahua, has one of the most expressive faces I've ever seen on a dog and I tried to capture that. This is actually the second painting I've finished of him, the first was for our perpetual calendar (below.)

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Shoe Boxes

I kept this Nike box on purpose to do something with because I loved the orange color. After last week I was so happy with the tablecloth I had used with the red shoes I reused it this week. I thought painting a couple of boxes would make this go by quickly but I quickly realized that the number of shadows and light sources made this much more fun and complicated to paint.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Hot Shoes

This painting is 5 x 5 oil on canvas. Please call me, email me, or click here if you'd like to buy this piece.

The Final Two

I haven't added the names yet but I completed the final two months for the calendar, March & August. August turned out pretty well since it was a last minute decision. I originally thought about painting a tree going through the stages of the seasons for January, March, August, and October but I scrapped that idea with the candy corn. That forced me to rethink the other months. My wife suggested a sprinkler this afternoon when I was stumped and it was just the thing.

August - The Lawn

March - Clover

Friday, October 30, 2009

Roses and Snow

Once again I tried to mimic Qiang Huang's distinctive style. February contains the holiday Valentine's Day which is meant to be an opportunity to show the one you love how much they mean to you again. This particular tile is exactly like my attempts to show my wife how special she is to me. I can try and try but I'll never get it to match how I feel exactly right.

February - Rose

January - Snowman

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Magic of Sunrise

For the perpetual calendar I decided that a folk art-like bag of apples or some generic "town" wouldn't do, so I decided on a painting of our house. Sometimes, especially in June, the house gets bathed in a brilliant yellow light early in the morning. I leave the house just early enough to catch this moment before it becomes too bright and it was important to me to capture this in oil. The beginning of every day is an opportunity to see the world in a new light and the poetry of this moment is fleeting.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Pepetual Calendar Month Tiles

November - Wheat

When I started getting the calendar together I had the idea of using wood to match the calendar. When I laid it out, however, I quickly realized how much wood would be in your face so I changed direction and went with the idea of using nature for each month. I made a couple of exceptions, but I'm really happy with the results overall. This has turned into the longest art project I've ever undertaken but it will be well worth it. It's also inspired me to continue painting which I had stopped for quite some time. Working on this every week has also sharpened my skills and I hope to continue that trend.

May - Poppies

July - Corn

December - Pine tree with cardinal

October - Candy corn

April - Forsythia
September - Apple tree

August - Sunflowers

I have a few more to go and will post them when I finish.

Monday, October 26, 2009

A Rose For Mother's Day

I found an artist online that I'm fascinated by and tried (unsuccessfully) to copy his style for this tile. The original is on his blog here. His is so much more vibrant but it was good practice. It was hard to duplicate the deliberate but quick strokes that seem to be his hallmark, especially with acrylic. It was worth the effort to celebrate a day dedicated to the difficult work my wife puts in every day. Without her, our house would come to grinding halt.