In most cases, my artwork starts out as a photograph that I then play with digitally to see if I like the same subject in completely different formats. An example of this are the three different presentations of two captures of high-rise office buildings in downtown Seattle. It started with the original captures below:
The first aspect that I used was to turn these captures into black and white photographs as shown below:
Then also like a very subtle
For the next two presentations, I used a detail drawing technique and a subtle watercolor to highlight the details and color of the buildings. To highlight the details of the buildings, I used an abstract approach to the sky resulting in keeping that aspect simple.
For the next two presentations, I went in a completely different direction. For these two presentations I used a more abstract drawing technique to create the buildings and then filled it with bursts of watercolor on and surrounding the structures. This approach creates a completely different visual for high-rise office buildings.
It has been an unusually wet winter and spring here in the Pacific Northwest. We moved up here (per my earlier blogs) in March. It was the middle of March when we received our furniture via the moving van and we have been settling in ever since (that’s short for painting every room, updating all three bathrooms, furniture shopping, donating furniture we shipped but aren’t using, new appliances….that kind of stuff).
Having said all that, I have been itching to get back to hiking, but with the wet weather I’ve acquiesced to waiting and the above items have kept me busy. With summer coming and the rains easing up, I’m ready to get back out there!! I’ve attached four captures from hikes I have done up here in the past to get me back to it!!
Just wanted to give a “heads up”…..I will not be blogging for the next couple of weeks. My wife and I are in the process of moving from Los Angeles to Seattle. After months of house hunting, we finally closed on a house in early February. We were up there a couple of weeks ago painting, window blinds…new carpet, etc and now the actual move is upon us. We are looking forward to it as we will be near both of our other daughters/husbands and a new grandchild. I also think Alaska Airlines will appreciate the frequent flyer activity between LA and Seattle from our LA daughter/husband/grandchildren and us as I know we will.
Back on November 5, 2013 my blog post covered a photoshoot I did in Issaquah, Washington (eastern suburb of Seattle at the foot of the Cascade Mountain Range). Why this is resurfacing now is because I came cross one of those captures in my archives while moving some other prints there (I try and weed through my prints and periodically retire some of them to my personal archive file). I had used it as a background for one of my inspirational prints (also shared below) I created in August 2020. The original print really caught me eye and I thought it worthing of having it on my “TheWallGallery” website.
The shot is very unusual in that this is the last thing you would expect to come across while on a hike in a heavily forested foothill just east of Seattle, Washington. I researched the location and found the background behind the stairs. The site use to be an anti-aircraft facility to protect this area from attack. This stairway along with one other connected what was an area for barracks up to the missiles themselves. For the history of the site and what is now Cougar Mountain Regional Park, click here: “Radar Park” at Anti-Aircraft Peak
Taking a complete 180 from last weeks abstract art prints, this week I’m showcasing two art prints I created using an old world gothic earth tone approach. The earth tone approach uses rich warm colors with a brownish hue. The two subjects are buildings representing both the east and the west coast of the United States. I have a love of architectural details and like presentations that capitalize on those details.
The first one is from the New England area and features a classic architectural style which works really well with a “gothic’ presentation. I love the capping to the roof lines as well as over the windows.
The second print is a building in downtown Seattle and I used a less traditional viewpoint of the structure by looking down on it. This perspective highlights the “corner” aspect of this buildings location. The overall architecture is more modern than the first example, but still traditional to the early part of the 20th Century. On this print the gothic style highlights not only the building, but the details from the first floor and the corner pedestrian activity.
Each print has the same overall color tones, but present two very different buildings that in my opinion are highlighted using the gothic style.
(As a follow up to last weeks post Tombstone, Arizona in Sepia, I asked for feedback on which sepia print was favored to help me narrow down to one or two. Ironically 1, 3 &4 got identical likes. Thanks!)
My wife and I just got back from a couple of weeks in Seattle. Two of our daughters and their husbands live there and this trip was great as we were able to spend time with all of them. One of the things I enjoy doing when we are up there is walking their dogs as needed. On one of my walks I was blown away by all of the spring blooms. On this particular walk the area is well established and the trees and bushes are very mature and large. I wanted to share some of the blooms I came across.
And to complete the captures, I had to share the following due to the shear size and look of this tree trunk…incredible.
My wife and I just got back to Los Angeles from a 2 week road trip back up to Seattle. For those of you that follow my blog, you will remember my post from mid September of the thick smoke in Seattle that we experienced when we were up there then. Yes, we turned around in a couple of weeks and returned this time via car. The early September trip was a last minute one to help on a family matter. This trip we had been planning all summer to take a few days going up, stopping at Crater Lake and Hood River Valley in Oregon. On our way back down we went through Oregon and cut over to the coast to drive down the extreme Northern California Coastline through the many redwoods that populate that geography. So for the next few weeks, I will be sharing some of my favorite captures from our trip.
I’m starting this week with two captures of Marymere Falls located in the Olympic National Park which is on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State. This was an awesome day trip we did with our two daughters and their husbands that live in the Seattle area. We took one of the many ferries that connect Seattle to the surrounding islands and the peninsula. From the arriving ferry port, we still had another 1.5 hour drive to the park.
There is so much to see and do with the many trails, etc, but my favorite one for the day was the attached two captures of Marymere Falls. The trail is just a quick 1.7 mile hike and ends with this 90 foot waterfall. There are two viewing platforms at different elevations to choose from. This first capture is from the lower platform and the second one is from the upper platform.
I want to extend my thoughts and prayers to all of those impacted by the wild fires up and down the west coast. I think of those who have lost their homes and/or evacuated from approaching flames to the fire fighters who have bravely been battling these fires.
My wife and I left Los Angeles August 31st for two weeks in Seattle (two of our daughters and their husbands live up there). At that point in time Northern California was battling significant wild fires and the smoke from those fires had migrated to Southern California. As we took off and started the flight north, there was a layer of brown smoke all of the way up the coast to Oregon. From Oregon on up to Seattle, the skies were clear and we were thankful to get out of the smoke.
Starting with our second week in Seattle, Oregon was now battling a number of fires and so was eastern Washington. Mid-week, the winds changed and the huge plume of smoke that had been blown out to sea from California and Oregon came inland and created the pictures I have attached. I took these with my cell phone by one of our daughters house because I was blown away with how weird the sun looked. It actually got worse as the week went on with no sun getting through.
We returned to Los Angeles Sunday September 13th. On that day going to the airport in Seattle, the smoke was so thick you couldn’t even see the downtown high-rises as we drove right by them on Interstate 5 (the freeway literally butts up to downtown). Taking off from the airport was like rising through a thick layer of clouds that had a brown tinge to them. On the 2.5 hour flight coming south over Washington, Oregon and Northern California, looking out the window at 35 thousand feet, there was nothing to see but the brown cloud below us. It boggles my mind that there would be a smoke plume of that size. Think about any flight you have had of that duration and think about if there was nothing but smoke below you for the entire flight.
The air was so brown, these shots almost look like sepia photography.
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In keeping with a look from my last few posts depicting peace and serenity, I have attached an art print called Garden Waterfalls. The setting is in Issaquah, Washington (eastern suburb of Seattle). Taking this scene, I used an abstract watercolor technique that simplifies the actual shape of the detail in the trees, bushes and waterfalls. This allows the eye to take in the entire perspective of this scene without getting lost in the many details that make it up.
My post this week is four captures for a trip we took last weekend to the Seattle area. Our youngest daughter and her husband both are turning 30 this month and we wanted to help them celebrate. Love going up there as our oldest daughter and her husband live just north of Seattle, so we get to see all of them whenever we go up!
As part of the long weekend, we took a ferry from downtown over to Bainbridge Island for lunch at a restaurant my son-in-law loves. The rain was off and on and I’m not going to lie….it was dang chilly for us Southern California babies. The four of us were sitting inside talking as the ferry lined up to pull into dock. As the ferry turned something outside caught my eye and of course I grabbed my camera and headed out.
This first capture is the town from the front deck as I worked my way around the boat to capture what caught my eye….
Bainbridge Island 1
as I got around to the side deck, I snapped this next capture.
Bainbridge Island 2
The next shot was the front deck to where I was headed and you can see what had caught my eye.
Bainbridge Island 3
I think this last capture says it all….just enough rain and sun for a full rainbow.
Bainbridge Island 4
My best to everyone….stay well!!
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