Tag Archives: art prints

Butterflies in a Variety of Colors

This week I am sharing a series of new prints I created of butterflies. The process for these prints started a couple of weeks ago when out of the blue I remembered a couple of photos I took of butterflies over a year ago. Not sure where that came from, but I dug out the photos. They really weren’t much to work with as I only took them to remind me to pursue butterflies as a possible subject. It only took that long for that particular process to work for me…duh!! Anyway, I took the subject matter and started drawing butterflies. Still not sure what I was going to do, I kept after the drawings and finally was able to complete a look I liked. To pop the color, I used a photoshop technique to make the butterflies colors take on a texture. After trying to recreate more butterflies, I simply copied the one drawing I liked the best…resized it as needed and pivoted them in different directions. I then started playing with colors as I wasn’t sure what the final color was going to be. This led to more experimentation and various colors. To finish the look I was after, I chose a soft background in similar shades to the butterflies. In Photoshop one of the brushes paints in leaf shapes, so I used that in the various colors and sizes. I then lowered the opacity to soften it as a back drop. The final result was five different colored butterflies on five different prints and then one print combining all five.

Yellow Butterflies
Red Butterflies
Purple Butterflies
Blue Butterflies
Green Butterflies
Colorful Butterflies

Thoughts?

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Reach Out

Reach Out

Using an abstract watercolor I created of a saguaro cactus in the Arizona Desert as a background, I felt like this motivational thought was the perfect fit. I believe He has chosen a path for each of us to walk. Often times in life, we find ourselves off that path and somewhat lost in where to go or what direction to take. Our guide is always there just waiting for us to take His hand and He will guide us not only back to the path, but keep us on the path.

I usually think of a forest path to best typify this thought process, but living a few years in the desert and being a fan of hiking….just as true there as anywhere else…it’s important to stay on the path….snakes, scorpions, etc.

Thoughts?

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Love Conquers All….

Love conquers all is a saying I am guilty of using quite a bit. It says so much and has come out of my mouth in many tough interpersonal situations. If you would ask my girls what is Dad infamous for always saying, they would come back with “Take the high road…..love conquers all.” I firmly believe if you have love at the core of what you are doing or saying, it does ultimately conquer all obstacles. It came full circle to me with one of my daughters recently when we were having a discussion about a situation I was dealing with and out of her mouth came: “Take the high road, love conquers all! You used that expression over and over again with us girls in these types of situations and that would be my recommendation to you in this case”.

I took her advice in that particular situation and it got me to thinking about creating some art prints capturing the essence of that expression. I ended up using three of my art prints with that saying as an overlay.

The first one is a color photograph of a peaceful and serene pond in Butchart Gardens located just outside of Victoria, British Columbia.

“Love Conquers All Butchart Gardens Pond”

In the second one I used a soft watercolor of Hidden Lake located just outside of Whistler, British Columbia, again going for the peaceful and serene look.

“Love Conquers All Mountain Meadow Lake”

With the third one I wanted to use something that included people, especially multiple people or a crowd of people. Keeping with a “soft look”, I chose a watercolor I created of a crowd of people inspired by a scene I saw in Seattle, Washington ahead of a major sports event.

Love Conquers All Seattle Abstract

Thoughts?

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Good Old Iowa Barns

I was going through some old stock the other day and came across a photo shoot I did in Eastern Iowa circa 2013. The timeframe was February…no snow, but trees were obviously leafless. I love certain subjects in black and white and older architecture is one of them. I converted the original captures into black and white and the following are the results which I just added to my gallery.

The photo shoot was in and around the Amana Colonies ( Wikipedia) settled in 1856 and comprise 7 villages that sit on 26,000 acres of farm land near Iowa City.

Twin Barns In Black And White
Amana Colony Barn
The Stables

Thoughts?

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Hot Air Balloons – The Inspiration of the Envelope

Most of us appreciate the beauty of a hot air balloon sailing gracefully through the air, rising and descending. What draws our attention is the balloon itself which is called the envelope. Today the colors are typically vibrant with bright shapes and colors. This week I’m featuring three hot air balloon art prints I created using a soft, somewhat abstract watercolor approach.

This first print focuses on the envelope being heated up, which I thought was a unique look to feature with the bright flame shooting upward. I used strong bold lines to create the overall shape and then filled in the areas with bright colors using a soft air brush look.

Evening Glow Red and Yellow Watercolor

This next one is still on the ground, but getting ready to rise. Same technique with the bold lines, but I wanted the contrast between the colorful envelope and the sky (ground at the bottom of the print) to be highlighted.

Peach Hot Air Balloon Night Glow Watercolor

This last one highlights the many colors of this particular balloon and keeps that the focal point.

The Yellow and Blue Balloon

Thoughts?

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Abstract Family

Over the last couple of weeks, I have been sharing what happens when you present the same subject matter in two different artistic methods and how that can change the way an image impacts the viewer. This week I am going to dive a little deeper into that using a variety of abstract art methods. I used one of these examples in a post that I did in 2014, but this time around wanted to show how four different results came from one group of small statues.

OK, now that I have confused the issue, let me start with the process I went through using the original subject matter. That subject matter is two small statues that go together and represents a family; a mother holding a  child and a father with a child on his shoulders. Having been married for 47 years and raising three incredible daughters, my wife and I celebrate family.  

I started the process by taking those two statuettes and placing them in a light box snapping numerous pictures of the statues in slightly different positions settling ultimately on the three I have attached to this post. I was only using the photographs as a basis, so wasn’t concerned whether the shot was in perfect focus or not (which one isn’t). From that point I tried a variety of styles and methods creating numerous art prints and finally settling on the attached four.

Starting with the the first capture of the mother and child in the foreground and the father with child on his shoulders in the background:

With the resulting art prints being:

For the first print, I used an impasto technique (impasto done in acrylic or oil emphasizes strong and bold brush strokes).

The Family Unit in Soft Hues

On the second one I played with the colors using a fauvism style (fauvism: vivd expressionistic and non-naturalistic use of color).

The Family Unit in Gold

Next up is the picture I used for the third art print. In this case I positioned the mother and father figure more side by side.

From this inspiration I created this:

Again, using a fauvism approach I created this art print with a complete change in colors.

The Family in Green

My last example comes from the next picture.

This basis was just slightly different in positioning of the statues resulting in the following:

For this fourth art print I used an abstract watercolor technique and again bold color choices.

The Family in Purple

I had fun with this series and just wanted to share one of the ways I come up with my art prints.

Thoughts?

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Bougainvillea – Bold and Subtle in Watercolor

Last summer I shared a couple of captures I took of our Bougainvillea blooms from our backyard. It took me until November to take those shots and create watercolor art prints of them. I also took them into two different directions, dark & bold and light & subtle. The original shots were taken to highlight the back lighting of the “colored bracts” surrounding the actual flower. That’s the technical and actual description, but most of us see the bracts as petals creating the bloom. The actual flower is a very small insignificant light colored center piece in the center of the bracts. Ok, so much for our botanical class lesson and let’s move on to what I did with them.

I wanted to present the look in a watercolor format as that lends itself to a soft warm presentation. What also caught me eye was the subtle difference in lighting and color saturation between the two. I decided to accent those differences which resulted in the attached art prints! I think the name I gave each says it all in what I saw as differences between the two.

Bougainvillea Dark And Bold
Bougainvillea Light And Subtle

Thoughts?

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Bold Orchids

I have attached two newer prints I created using orchids as a subject matter. In the case of these two, I used an impasto technique to create two strong visual experiences. This technique uses large and bold brush strokes creating a very distinctive visual texture. Add bold colors and the prints definitely stand out.

Purple Impasto Orchids

A good friend of ours has a green thumb with orchids and I used two of her plants as inspiration for these prints. I loved the deep purple of the one plant which inspired the first print.

Back Lit Orchids

I also like the look of back lighting these types of flowers (the blooms are thin enough to create a glow when back lit) and tried to replicate that look with these red orchids.

Thoughts?

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And More Lighthouses…..

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.

Mukilteo

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.

West Point

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).

Admiralty Head

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).

Thoughts?

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Light of Love

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.

Let His Light Shine Through You

Thoughts?

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