Wednesday, September 29, 2010

People's Choice Award

Well, this was certainly a nice surprise. I was awarded the Peoples Choice Award at the 5 Member Invitational exhibition for my painting "Summer Night at the Frosty Freeze". Quite an honor, considering the outstanding work at the show. Thanks very much to all who voted!

I took a break from painting for a few weeks (had only intended a respite of one week, but it stretched into several). Mind you, I still had a brush in my hand. I ended up moving my studio from the sun room to a spare bedroom, and I painted the walls a neutral gray.

It's been quite energizing working in a new space. I've almost finished a scene from Provincetown, Cape Cod, and will soon start work on a few commissions. I look forward to hunkering down in my cozy studio as the weather gets colder.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Great show

Had a very successful opening on Friday for the 5 Member Invitational at Portsmouth Arts Guild. Great turnout, not to mention some tasty nibbles. That always helps. Even I succumbed to the cheese and crackers.

More importantly, the art looked fabulous, and I'm not talking about mine. It was an honor to share the show with four very talented people - Anne Winthrop Cordin, Marc Jaffe, Priscilla Foley, and Lenny Rumpler. Their work made mine look good.

Below is a link to Portsmouth Patch, whose Editor, Sandy McGee, wrote a brief article about the opening and took photos.

Now that the rush is over, will take a break for a week, then work on a few commissions. Would also like to start on some new pieces from my recent trip to Provincetown, MA. No rest for the artistically motivated.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

5 Member Invitational

It's been some time since my last blog. This is becoming a bad habit! I have good reason though. The summer has been glorious, so needless to say I've been spending as much time outdoors, or painting, as I can. The computer sees far more action in the winter months. The show opening this Friday deserves a post, however. This is the big one. The big kahuna! I've been painting furiously for the past 6 months in preparation for the 5 Member Invitational at the Portsmouth Arts Guild, and it's finally here.

The paintings shown here are just two of the pieces I've entered - "Corn Dogs" and "Candy Apples", which are scenes from a carnival that I visited in May. My initial thoughts were to paint the ferris wheel and other carnival rides, but I was drawn to the carnival workers and the booths they worked in. I just loved the signs, and the abstract shapes and bright colors, and I wanted to paint them. I did eight pieces in total, all based around a "people and places" theme, two of my favorite subjects to paint.

Come to the show if you can. I will update my website shortly with new images of my paintings.

Corn Dogs - 18x24"

Candy Apples - 20x20"

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Looking forward to summer

Edouard Vuillard - "The Garden at Vaucresson"

Boy, it's been a while since my last blog. We're mid June already, though it doesn't feel like it this week. It's been cool and overcast. Hoping for some sunshine soon.

Spending most of my painting time preparing for my upcoming show in August, the Portsmouth Arts Guild 5 Member Invitational. Racing against the clock now. Ugh. I don't like pressure, but it's certainly motivational. Have been working from photos I took at a local carnival, which is somewhere full of people, light, color... my favorite things to paint. Last weekend I went to New York City, which is only my second visit to this amazing city. Took almost 700 photos, so I think I can safely say I have plenty of pictures for future paintings. I do plan on entering a few New York inspired pieces in the August show.

Of all places I visited in NYC, the Metropolitan Museum of Art left the biggest impression, from a painting perspective that is. Discovered some new favorites, such as Pierre Bonnard and Edouard Vuillard. Their sense of color and light was incredible. For the time being, I have lost interest in painting landscapes, but if anyone could inspire me to take my easel outside and get busy en plein air, these artists could. Photos don't do these masterpieces justice, but I took some anyway, then went and bought the book from the MET gift store. (As an aside, the MET gift store is a major trap for the unwary. It's full of every conceivable art momento...books, mugs, t-shirts, posters...the list goes on. Avoid it if you don't want to blow your travel budget. I couldn't help myself!)

Right now, I feel like I'm bubbling over with artistic creativity. Hopefully it'll keep me going for many months to come.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

2nd Prize!

Received some exciting news yesterday. I won 2nd prize at the Imagine Red juried show at the Portsmouth Arts Guild for my painting "The Red Duvet"! Yay! It was entirely unexpected, particularly as my only concern was just to be accepted into the show. I'm quite chuffed. Shall be attending the opening tomorrow night, for sure. Will post a pic of my painting shortly.

The good news was especially welcome considering the awful time we had last week with the record rainfall in Rhode Island. Never thought we'd have to worry about flooding, but the backyard became so waterlogged from the 9 inches of rain that fell in such a short time, that the septic couldn't handle it, and waste began to back into the house. Gross! Was on the bucket-brigade for at least an hour, non-stop, till the plumber arrived and at least relieved me of duty. Managed to prevent any major damage or flooding in our basement. Had to spend a couple of nights in a hotel while we let the septic get on top of things again, but everything seems okay now. Still, I'm a little nervous of the rain that's forecast for tomorrow. Hope the ground has dried up enough, with all this sunny weather, that a little rain will go unnoticed. Cross fingers.

Will have to start painting this afternoon. Haven't painted anything since last Monday, and I'm suffering from creative withdrawal.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Art and dolphins...

Had some great news this week. I've been accepted into the juried show at Portsmouth Arts Guild entitled 5 Members' Invitational. Myself and 4 other PAG members will be showing our work at the Portsmouth gallery in August. I'm thrilled! There's lots of painting to be done, but I'm feeling motivated and up to the challenge. All this sunshine we've been having lately has certainly helped. Spring is almost upon us, and I love spring.

I certainly welcomed the good news after my miserable Monday this week. I came across a documentary called The Cove, a snippet of which aired on the Oscars Sunday night (The Cove won an award). Totally depressing footage of dolphins being brutally slaughtered in Japan. I was absolutely horrified. As you may have noticed from the animal-related banners I have on my blog, which includes WSPA (World Society for Protection of Animals), Potter League (a RI shelter), and AAVS (American Anti-Vivisection Society), I love animals, so I was brought to tears by the image of a dolphin fleeing for its life, albeit unsuccessfully.

I immediately texted Dolphin to 44144, which was the number the creators of The Cove held up when they won, and hence discovered a website called I joined the group, which was free, and signed an online petition: If anyone is interested in helping these beautiful, intelligent animals, please click on the link.

If you're interested in learning more about the dolphins' plight, you can read an article here: There is more information on the WSPA website.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Appreciate the sunshine

It's still cold outside, but the sun is shining, which is such a nice change. More crappy weather predicted tomorrow though... snow, rain, sleet. By March I'm thoroughly fed up with winter. The only silver lining is that it gives me an excuse to do some work on my website.

Speaking of which, I downloaded my new and improved website last night. The biggest change is the neutral grey background, which I hope enhances my paintings. Aside from that, most elements of the website have remained the same. To be honest, I really just enjoy playing with Dreamweaver, and when I get bored of how things look I enjoy the challenge of discovering new ways of displaying my work. There are still many tricks I haven't yet learnt.

I'll be posting some new images on my website this week, one of which will be on show at the Portsmouth Arts Guild Annual Members' All-Media Exhibition which opens on March 14 at 2pm. The exhibit runs through till the beginning of April.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Things to come

With the approach of Spring (though it certainly doesn't feel like it with all this rain and cold weather), comes another year of exhibitions and painting deadlines. I've got a few shows lined up for 2010 already, with others hopefully in the pipeworks. I'm also displaying work at the Portsmouth Arts Guild again this year, from April through to July.

All this means I have to get my A into G and produce a lot of paintings. Luckily I feel inspired and motivated, which is often not the case with me, but lately I've developed a keen interest in two subjects which should provide a limitless resource of material. One is interiors, the other people-scapes.

So far, the interiors I've painted have included a movie theatre, a restaurant, a diner, two motel rooms, and several rooms from private residences, with many more pieces to follow. My people-scapes have been inspired by New York and the busy Provincetown in Cape Cod. Aside from my interest in light, shadow, and reflection, what these two subjects have in common is the human element, whether it's the hustle and bustle of a busy street, or the quiet serenity of an empty room where the occupants have only just vacated, or are about to inhabit it. I like to wonder about these people - what are they thinking, why are they there, where are they going? People are interesting, and even a vacant room has a story to tell.

Right now I'm longing for summer. (I'm sick of being cold, and I desperately need some Vitamin D.) The onset of warmer weather also brings with it tourists to Newport, and thus busy, crowded streets. Good subject-matter for my people scapes. The sun also creates marvellous interior shots. In fact, the sun is essential to both my outdoor and indoor scenes. There's nothing like a darkened room with a liquid pool of sunlight, or the blue-grey afternoon shadow of people and buildings late on a summer's day.

I will be updating my website again in the next couple of days. I'll also add some of my most recent paintings. As you may have guessed, they're of interiors and people-scapes.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Lobster Pot Lights, 20x20" (top) - Late Afternoon on Commercial St, 20x20"

Room 28, 16x20" (top) - Room 14, 14x18"

It's been a while since my last post. I haven't blogged or updated my website for many months, and now we're into the new year! Geez, I really have been slack.

Since my trip to NYC I've been back to the Cape, and had a weekend in Salem, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. I love Cape Cod. I embarked on a Hopper pilgrimage of sorts in an attempt to track down some of the Truro and Wellfleet locations he immortalized in his paintings. I was somewhat successful, but even when I wasn't, at least I had fun en route.

My most recent paintings have, of course, been of the Cape. I painted two interiors of the motel rooms I stayed in, and several street scenes from Provincetown. I've found myself wondering about the people I paint in my street scenes, what lives they lead, their relationships with each other. It's the same with my interiors. Despite their emptiness, my intent is to make the viewer curious about the previous occupants, or the occupants to be.

I have a few more paintings yet to post. I've also just completed a Monet forgery for the upcoming Fakes & Forgeries exhibition at Spring Bull Gallery in Newport, RI, and in the next few days I'll start on my next painting project. A new year, and a new start. Hopefully it'll be a successful painting year!