Day 13 of 30 in 30- Sunset at Tea House

Day 13 – This is a painting inspired when I visited the Marble House this winter. The Marble house is a “cottage” in Newport, Rhode Island. In reality, its actually an incredibly large mansion, on Bellevue Avenue, and this tea house is in its backyard. This tea house was built by Alva Vanderbilt, who hosted tea parties for women’s suffrage, or the right to vote. Newport has quite a history of wealthy families, their homes, and rich heiresses that made matches with Englishmen with titles. A lot of English families lived on their large estates, and needed a surge of wealth to maintain their homes and staff depending on them. A match with these wealthy heiresses filled the coffers and saved them from ruin, but sadly most matches were of convenience and not love. If you are local to New England, it is definitely worth a trip to see these “cottages” and the beautiful Ocean Drive area.  If I sound like an add for Newport’s tourism, its because I have been going there for years and love to visit!

This was the tea house one late afternoon, touched by a pinkish, orange sunset.  I started this painting with a palette knife, but gave up and finished it with brushes.  I did keep some of the palette knife strokes, but its mostly brush strokes.  I hope to try the palette knife again sometime, as I do enjoy a challenge!

 

 

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Day 10- Groundhog field

Day 7 of the painting challenge…

Groundhog field

Day 10 of the 30 in 30.   This was inspired by a field I pass often in Rhode Island.  It may look like an ordinary field but it is not.  And that is the point of this post.   This field is home to many creatures, specifically a bunch of ground hogs.  99% of the time that I pass this field, I see one.  Even when I took the photo for this painting, I got a few in the photo.

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And that got me thinking.  This field is in a prime commercial spot.  Which worries me.  I firmly believe that we must share the earth.  Not just with people, but also with creatures.  Maybe that’s why I try to help animals so much.  They simply can’t speak for themselves.  We have to.  I hope this art creates awareness of all the little creatures that call these fields and other places home.  We should do what we can to save some land for them, or create environments where they can still thrive alongside us.

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This painting is available in my etsy shoppe.

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The art of “eyeing it”

Loosely drawing is easier for me

I love to paint.  But patience is not my virtue.  That being said I do not like to take time and sketch with a pencil.  Or measure.  Or calculate.  I just jump right in and paint.

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I had a conversation a few months ago with a fellow artist that does incredible paintings that look just like photographs.  She has created a tool that helps her place things perfectly on a canvas, such as windows, etc.  She referred to one of my paintings and told me how her new tool would save me lots of time.  It would save me time measuring things out.  So I then told her I do not measure.  She was surprised.  Really?  How do you get all those windows in place? I told her that I eye it in.  And then I started thinking. What is my method?  I realized that I just count the number of windows, and then paint them in.  How I loosely draw the subject, then tighten it and define it.  And I decided I like my way better.

 

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The painting that the other artist was surprised to hear I did not measure.

 

My paintings are not photo realistic.  And I am happy with that.  I respect those that paint realistically, but its not my style.  Even in my home, I prefer the looser style.  The ones where the brush strokes tell a story, and make your imagination work a bit.  Imagining if you will, the scene the artist has created for you.  The strokes of pink that suggest or tell you that there are flowers there, but are not fully detailed.

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All the paintings shown were loosely drawn in with a brush that I have worn to a stub, with paint thinned by turpentine.

 

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This was a flat brush.  I don’t think it owes me anything.  A well loved brush.

 

 

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Ocean House, Westerly, RI

 

The only time I measure anything, is when I measure the horizon to make sure it is the same throughout the canvas.  That is one thing I do have a hard time eyeing in.

So far my method works for me, and I love it.  Maybe someday I will have the patience to use a tool to help me with my art, but until then I am satisfied.  And that’s what counts.

 

 

Inspiration

Being an artist requires a lot of things, and one of those is inspiration. It is perhaps one of the most important things that an artist can have. Without it, it is difficult to create. For me anyways…..
With that being said, I am lucky to live about 3 miles from the border of Rhode Island. Rhode Island may be the smallest state in the union, but it could well be one of the most inspirational ones. There is so much beauty jam packed into this little state.
From scenic homes, to scenic coastlines, it is full of inspiration.
Here are a few places I have found for inspiration.

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Beaches

Rhode Island has a ton of beaches!  And they are wonderful.  Some are just a parking lot with a lone building for restrooms, and some have restaurants with bars.  I myself prefer the single building, and gravel parking lot.  There is something about a bunch of beach roses blooming with grasses in a sand dune lot, that is more appealing than bituminous pavement. We visited Scarborough beach for the first time because my favorite, Matunuck was full.  I did enjoy it, but Matunuck is still my favorite.

Newport, RI

Newport is a hidden gem.  It has a little harbor area with cute little shops and delicious restaurants.  Then just up the street are incredible mansions that are sometimes gaudy, but always incredibly detailed and beautiful, with rich histories.  Then there is also an area called Brenton Point that has breathtaking views as well as a beach and jetty to pick rocks at, all the while kites flutter above you in the breeze. Best thing about Brenton point is that its free, yes you read that right!  Something is still free!  And they have bathrooms for the public to use also.  I have spent many an afternoon on the grass of this area enjoying a picnic lunch while admiring the kites overhead and sailboats gliding by.  A little bit of heaven on earth!  Of course in all these areas you will see the familiar Del’s lemonade, a staple in this area on a hot summer day.

 

DSC_0825Last trip to Newport, we visited Fort Adams Park.  Which was really quite interesting.  While visiting, we saw a new tall ship, the Oliver Hazard Perry.  Isn’t it making quite a statement, just resting in port.  That flag may be calling me to paint it……

Wherever you go in Newport, there is so much inspiration.  Above I have included some of  my art inspired by the beauty of Newport.  If you are interested please visit my Etsy shoppe.
Creatively yours,

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