Wednesday, May 25, 2016

The Suisun City Marina

The day was everything an artist could ask for. Great sun and warm with only a small breeze blowing. I was in Suisun City, The marina is very tidy and those are the city office buildings across the way. We all found different places to paint. I was visited by all of the walkers along the marina and that included a group of kids from Ecuador. They had just arrived a week ago to spend the summer working at 6 Flags. They had lots of questions and we chatted for a long time about what to see and do in Northern CA. I was not happy with my work today. I really wanted to underpaint my background and then come back to it. As it turned out it was too strong a value. My boats need lost edges. I felt like I was a beginner with my watercolor work. Some days no matter what, the painting does not come together the way I want it.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Old and New Horsepower

On Wednesday, our group traveled out to a farm near Rio Vista. This place had the goods. They never threw away a piece of equipment but let it gather rust and sit where it ended its tour. There were plenty of rusted parts, tractors, and trucks for painting. I loved seeing the old dozer next to the newest truck; this was my subject. The day was hot, near 100 degrees with the sun beating down and no shade. I sketched quickly and when painting, was discovered by tiny black bugs. They gathered on my paper and were biting. Out with my bug spray but not in time. Maybe you've had a day like this. Ground too solid to put up an umbrella, the wind gusting, and then my easel got temperamental with collapsing legs. I know I had it coming after so many good days to paint on location.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

The Art Ag Outing

We visited a wonderful farm this morning. The day was beautiful and plenty of people showed up to paint. The corn is up to 4ft and the tomatoes are thriving. This scene is along one of many roads and includes the 'bone yard'. There were not many bones in the yard. Everything looked in working order with no traces of rust. It is a very tidy farm. those are the blue mountains of Winters in the background.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

A Rural Road to Winters

Last week we found a quiet road to stop and paint. No one was very enthusiastic because we originally setup and found the site to noisy with lots of truck traffic. We packed up and went around to the distant street and began again. It met our needs and everyone was much happier. Little traffic but a lot of bike riders.

Saturday, May 14, 2016


This painting exercise was good for me. I don't stay within the lines and doing the Starbuck cups ala Warhol was challenging. I made as large a drawing as possible and then copied the logo. I had problems with the resist perhaps because it was old and had lots of bits. The color scheme was a triad. The cupcake was done in the Thibauld style. He is well known in this area because he taught here at the University and is still putting in appearances. He never considered himself a 'pop' artist but it can be said that he made the most expensive deserts. Sally is leading a class for us to experience this world of art and it is fun. She is a good teacher and does all the baking. We get the still life to eat afterwards.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

A Vineyard in Davis

Not very far on the outskirts of Davis, there is a small vineyard. We were invited to paint there last Wednesday. I was surprised when I found it on a dirt road heading south in Davis. This is the town that contains the wonderful wine school at UCDavis, so why the surprise. I guess because I've lived here for 45 years and was never been aware. There are vineyards all over the outlying towns so the soil must be right. The vines are just starting to leaf. The grounds were so clean with no weeds showing. In painting the scene, I tried several quick thumbnail sketches but could not find a focal point. Rather than worry about composition I decided just to try mixing greens to define the leafage. Great day was had by all.