This week I’m sharing a print I just finished. It’s based on a capture I took a few years ago. It’s a sailboat on San Diego Bay with downtown San Diego as the back drop. The point of view of the scene is looking across the bay from Coronado Island towards the downtown skyline. With this print, I used the original photo and did a Photoshop “abstract” creation. Using those two as a guide, I digitally painted this final print. I liked subduing the buildings for the background to have the sailboat stand front and center. I also took the liberty of creating abstract foliage for the majority of the coastline at the base of the buildings so as to not have to put in detail actually found there (such as the USS Midway floating museum). I kept to a linear abstract approach keeping clean lines where needed creating the various shapes.
My post this week takes a look at three different sunsets that I created using an abstract approach to the subject matter with an impasto style of brush strokes. There are two things going on with these prints. First, I created the scene by making general shapes in various shades of color for the clouds and ocean. Next, I took those creations and did an impasto style of brush strokes. This type of brush stroke is bold and creates depth to the painting.
In this first one I stayed in the orange and yellow family for color. I also added a coastline for the foreground. Carlsbad Sunset is based on a dramatic sunset over the Pacific Ocean in Northern San Diego County. The view point is a hilltop a few miles inland overlooking the ocean.
This second one represents a colorful sunset again based on an actual sunset in Northern San Diego County. The general viewpoint of both is the type of view we had from our house in San Diego County. What makes these prints even more impressive is that in the 18 years we lived there, these were some of the few colorful sunsets we had. Living close to the coast in this part of Southern California does have its advantages in moderate temperatures year round typically not getting either real hot or cold. That said, the ocean keeps the air temperature moderate, but also does create what is called a marine layer (low level clouds that are close to being fog if they were to get lower). Dramatic sunsets require high level clouds to reflect the colors from the setting sun and a marine layer blocks all of that.
This last abstract sunset is based on a look I saw from a Northern California coastal beach that had actual fog roll in just as the sun was setting. It created unique colors through the fog that I took into the blue and purple color family to make this a unique abstract print.
Lighthouses are a great symbol of guidance to safety. I’ve attached two art prints I have created of lighthouses using entirely different approaches. On both, I added the same verse which I thought fit perfectly with a lighthouse. The verse refers to the “Light of Life”, which I think of as Love, Hope, Peace and Joy. We all seek that and find comfort in these feelings. With the Christmas Season upon us, especially this year, we definitely could use as much Love as we can muster for each other and the Hope that we will conquer this pandemic sooner rather than later. Peace and Joy we all seek in our everyday lives on a daily basis. All of this is within our ability as individuals and is one of the few things we can actually control on a daily basis.
This first print, I created the lighthouse in a very abstract matter.
The second print, I created using ink drawing to outline the lighthouse structure and then filled in the color with a watercolor/airbrush technique.
May your holiday season be filled with Love, Hope, Peace and Joy!
In continuing from last weeks post from our recent road trip up to the Seattle area from Los Angeles, I wanted to share some captures from the Hood River Valley in Northern Oregon. We stopped here after visiting Crater Lake in Southern Oregon (pics from that coming soon). Hood River is a town located on the confluence of the Hood River and The Columbia River. Just south of the town is a stunningly beautiful agricultural valley. The valley is known for its tree fruit agriculture—including one of the world’s largest pear growing areas. There is a mapped out drive around the valley called the “Fruit Loop”. It lists a number of places to visit where the twenty-nine member stands offer you a variety of wines, fruits, vegetables, flowers, ciders, and food. We chose to stop at an apple orchard where we were able to pick our own fruit. Loved the experience as neither my wife or I have picked apples from an orchard since we were young. It also high-lighted an old country store where in respect to covid, goods were displayed outside in front of the historic building.
This weeks captures were taken along the fruit loop and as Mt Hood is a prominent backdrop in the valley, I couldn’t resist these shots with the fall color.
October is the time of year in Southern California where roses hit their seasonal stride with an incredible showing of blooms. I decided to feature three art prints that were inspired by one of my favorite roses, the Candy Cane Rose.
The first one is an abstract watercolor rendition of one of the blooms.
The second and third prints are from the same plant and on these I used a slightly more subtle abstract watercolor technique.
With last weeks picture of an abstract lighthouse, I thought it would be appropriate to go back to the lighthouse theme I did in August. I drew those lighthouses using an ink and watercolor technique. I have completed three more lighthouse drawings since those posts of Oregon Lighthouses, with these being in the state of Washington.
The first one is my rendition of the Mukilteo Lighthouse on the east side of Possession Sound in Mukilteo, Washington. The lighthouse is an operational navigational aid built in the 1950’s north of Seattle and just south of Everett. The Mukilteo location also sits next to one of the ferry terminals serving auto and pedestrian commuters between the mainland and the numerous islands in the Pacific Northwest.
The second one is West Point Lighthouse which is located in Discovery Park (Seattle, Washington) It sits on the north part of the park on a piece of land that juts out into Puget Sound on the north end of Elliot Bay (Elliot Bay is the body of water that downtown Seattle fronts opening into the Puget Sound).
The third and final one in the series is Admiralty Head Lighthouse constructed to replace the original structure in 1903. The location of this lighthouse marks the north end of Admiralty Inlet which connects The Strait of San Juan de Fuca with the Puget Sound (for ocean voyage between the port of Seattle and the Pacific Ocean, you would sail out of Elliot Bay into the Puget Sound heading north towards Canada sailing through theAdmiralty inlet to connect to the Strait of San Juan de Fuca which separates the two countries and then westward out to the Pacific Ocean).
I just wanted to post a reminder that now more than ever we need to approach the issues of the day with as much love in our hearts as we can muster. People are hurting and it’s up to all of us to reach out with all of the love and compassion we can muster. It may not always be received well, but we can’t quit trying.
In sticking with black and white art prints, this week I’m sharing black and white sketches. The subject matter is Mayan Ruins and this series of sketches is of the ruins at Chichen Itza, Mexico (Wikipedia). I should have been an archeologist as I love exploring the architecture of ruins from a variety of prior civilizations. In the case of Chichen Itza, I have visited this site a couple of times and find the structures fascinating. Black and white works well with this subject matter as it highlights the details of the architecture.
The central focal point of the city is the pyramid (Temple of Kukulcan). I have had the pleasure of hiking up to the top during my first visit and the second time we went down there, it had been closed off to people walking up the stairs.