Blue Skies were the Inspiration for this Painting

Blue skies smiling at me nothing but blue skies do I see. ~Ella Fitzgerald, Singer  I never get tired of blue skies. ~Vincent Van Gogh, Painter The traveler who has gone to Italy to study the tactile values of Giotto, or the corruption of the Papacy, may return remembering nothing but the blue sky andContinue reading “Blue Skies were the Inspiration for this Painting”

Beginner’s Mind

Experiment in art school. Then, choose a medium and a subject (i.e., landscape, portrait, etc.) and work hard if you want to be successful. That advice is well-intentioned and logical, but all work and no play can make anyone dull or bored. I’m far from bored with painting or with landscapes. The landscape offers somethingContinue reading “Beginner’s Mind”

At the Heart of Plein Air Painting

Unlike Realism, Modern, Contemporary, or Impressionism, plein air painting is not a style of painting. It could be considered a tradition in this sense: Traditional art is art that is part of a culture of a certain group of people, with skills and knowledge passed down through generations from masters to apprentices. Yes, there areContinue reading “At the Heart of Plein Air Painting”

Photographing Artwork

Photographing artwork can be easy or difficult depending on your expectations. If you just want a photo of your artwork and you don’t care if the color is accurate, then taking a photo is easy. Just lay your artwork on a flat surface or place it against something upright and take a photo with yourContinue reading “Photographing Artwork”

How Awareness has Helped Me Paint Better

I’m glad you’re here! I understand your presence here and now to mean that you’re generally interested in art and maybe interested in what artists think about the work of making art. My interests are somewhat narrower. I’m interested in painting and what painters think about the work of painting. When I was in gradContinue reading “How Awareness has Helped Me Paint Better”

Should Artists Keep Art Journals?

I have journals and notebooks scattered all around my home. I love them. And I love to write in them. I’m just not very consistent about when I write or what the purpose of my writing should be. So sometimes, often, I have two or three journals going at once and I’m writing about differentContinue reading “Should Artists Keep Art Journals?”

Why Paint in a Tradition?

I’m a plein air landscape artist and I do some still life paintings when the weather is bad or it’s just too cold to stand outside for three hours. I live in Minnesota. Today, I can say that I paint in the tradition of painterly realism, but it took some time for me to identifyContinue reading “Why Paint in a Tradition?”