Saturday, October 24, 2009

San Jose Buddhist Church Betsuin

Last week's paintsite was in Japantown at the Buddhist Church on North 5th St. We had a huge rain storm two days previous, so I dressed for cool weather - was surprised by hot tropical weather!
We were sat out on the sidewalk painting in full sun, so eventually it got way too hot to do anything. I didn't even do a drawing for the second sketch, just launched in quickly with the paints.
Over lunch, some adorable children came across from the Kindergarten to look at our paintings. I'm not sure they were that impressed!

Alum Rock Hike and Sketch

This week we went on a hike and sketch in Alum Rock Park. The day started out foggy, which was a nice atmospheric change and gave us a few challenges for painting.

We were only a short distance from the carpark when we came across beautiful views and lovely colors, and we had to stop several times in quick succession to paint.

We were stopped on the trail at this point by a magnificent view looking up the hill into the fog. The fog drifted over the hilltops and was continually changing. It was so peaceful and calming sitting there. After we had painted for about 20 minutes the fog started to clear and by the time we left it was blue sky and sunshine and the hillside had totally different colors and shadows.
Eventually we did get to do a little more hiking than sketching and discovered a large, dead tarantula on the trail (why didn't I suggest sketching it?) The male tarantulas are all out looking for females this time of year and I guess it came off poorly in the mating game.

After lunch we made our way back down into the valley and sketched alongside the creek.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Aerodynamic Aviation, Reid Hillview Airport

Fly me to the moon, la la. Well, fly me over the Bay at least...

Here we are today at my local airport trying to paint the planes. Like boats, they're quite a challenge. Somehow, you think you have them contained on the page, but then you realize they're bigger than you first thought and the perspective is damned tricky!
It was a lot of fun.

Many thanks to Aerodynamic Aviation for hosting us.


Here is a recent pet portrait I did for a friend. I just love to paint animals, it's a challenge, but also fun!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Coastal Bliss

This last Thursday paint out was wonderful. Imagine sun, sand, surf, gulls and pelicans. Down at Point Pinos Lighthouse the views were terrific and the weather perfect. My first painting turned out remarkably well. In fact one passing car load of people asked if it was for sale. I replied that regrettably it was in my sketchbook and on the back of another painting. If I'd had my wits about me I should just have ripped it out and asked for $50!
My second painting was not quite so successful, but parts of the third one came out ok. For this last one I sat under some trees on the very edge of the golf course, beyond a bunker. Fortunately the golfers seemed competent enough not to send the balls in my direction!
The whole day was like a salve for the soul. Gorgeous seascapes, good company, and time spent with paints. it doesn't get any better than that!