Saturday, August 27, 2011

Another Variation

Another variation on the barn. I thought I better post this while I still can. Irene is coming.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Variation on a Barn

Variation on a Barn sounds like a Charles Ives piece of music. This is the missing corner, as I work my way around the barn.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Washington crossed the Delaware at this site. On the left is the bridge that he used to get over the river. 12 x 18 oil.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Path to the Footbridge

This is the path in the park to the footbridge that crosses Route 29 early in the morning yesterday.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Turning the Corner

A 12x12 barn corner. I think I understand how this barn worked in terms of where the cows were situated. Presumably this is a cow entrance, but I have to talk to one of the farmers, who probably know all about this place.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Pencil Me in

These three drawings were done with different pencils ranging in hardness from 2H to 9B. I don't have the patience to sharpen and shave the points and lay marks side by side, as is sometimes recommended, but the different pencils used together still give a nice effect. Using a range of pencils is better than using one pencil and varying the pressure for lighter or darker lines. One drawback with pencil is the shiny surface in the dark areas. The top drawing is done with woodless graphite pencils, which I think gives the best results for the way I draw, without the shine.

Of course, if one are doing a walk and draw outside, one cannot carry and use five or six pencils. I don't have enough hands and can't tell the pencils apart easily. Outside I use one pencil, but again have discovered that a soft woodless graphite pencil is a good choice, because I can get sharp lines, and use the side for broad lines.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Sunday's Painting

This is the painting from last Sunday, another 8x10 oil. These are exercises in limited palettes and color mixing. I just have to avoid getting confused.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Saturday's Painting

A view of the entire barn from the northwest. Another 8x10 oil. It's not really a barn, but an enormous still life.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Friday's Barn

This is the barn view that I did last Friday. The place was not so abandoned since there were men and tractors working the fields nearby.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Old Barn with Openings

Another painted version of a previous drawing. 12x12 oil.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Two Barns and Gruppe's Advice

Two 12 x 12 oil paintings, one slightly revised from an earlier posting, and the other from a drawing previously posted.

The following quote is from Emile Gruppe's Brushwork: A Guide to Expressive Brushwork for Oil Painting: " closing advice to you is to paint what you like--don't worry if anyone else likes it or not. And study nature carefully, so you know what you're trying to do. Maybe you'll eventually agree with me: if there's a heaven, it must be here on earth. The world is so beautiful! Everyone subconsciously appreciates this beauty. But the painter's appreciation is more conscious--and he spends his life trying to communicate his feelings to others."

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Old Barn, Another Side

I have completed two oil paintings of the barn, but here's another drawing in preparation for a third painting. You may think they are similar in composition, and they are. It's a big barn. I will eventually do the entire barn also. I will post the paintings in a couple days. You may have noticed they are all square. It's a series.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Old Barn Side

There's a second barn that has collapsed in the background. I have started a couple paintings from these drawings. Nothing more to add yet on old painters and pain. A poet might point out that the word pain is contained in the word paint and painter.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Hole in Barn and Pain

The old barn from the other side.

Regarding older artists, Madeleine L'Engle writes in Walking on Water, "It is interesting to note how many artists have had physical problems to overcome, deformities, lameness, terrible loneliness. Could Beethoven have written that glorious paean of praise in the Ninth Symphony if he had not had to endure the dark closing in of deafness? As I look through his work chronologically, there's no denying that it deepens and strengthens along with deafness. Could Milton have seen all that he sees in Paradise Lost if he had not been blind? It is chastening to realize that those who have no physical flaw, who move through life in step with their peers, who are bright and beautiful, seldom become artists. The unending paradox is that we do learn through pain."

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The Old Barn and the Old Artists

The Old Barn. Before painting another image, I think I might do a few more drawings.

Here's an interesting passage from Kenneth Clark's Landscape into Art. I read the book as an undergraduate, which might explain to me why I don't remember much of it. It's actually quite brilliant, I think. The part about artists in old age is appealing. He does reclaim Monet who revived in his old age.

"I have said that impressionism was the painting of happiness. This, although one of its charms for us, is also one of its limitations, for the impressionists were thereby cut off from the deepest intuitions of the human spirit, and in particular from those which great artists achieve in the last years of their lives. There used to be a comfortable belief that great artists grew old in a kind of haze of benevolence, but a theory which does not apply to Dante, Shakespeare, Milton, Tolstoi, Beethoven, Michelangelo and Rembrandt, is not really of much value; and the history of art shows that the minds which have not simply given up the struggle end in a kind of sublime despair at the spectacle of human destiny. Now expressionist art is essentially tragic; it was a sense of the misery and wastefulness of existence which gave an expressionist character to the late work of Constable and Cezanne--even to some of the late drawings of Degas. But in 1880 Cezanne and Degas were still classic painters, and the impressionists were all sunshine. It was van Gogh who brought back the sense of tragedy into modern art; and, like Nietzsche and Ruskin, found in madness the only escape from the materialism of the nineteenth century."

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Barn Side

These images represent part of the old barn at the abandoned farm house. I will probably work a bit more on the painting, and at least make another photo of it. The oil is 12x12, the drawing 11x11.

Monday, August 1, 2011

New Path

This is the view looking back on the path to the abandoned farmhouse, near the abandoned tractor.