Untitled Abstract 012520

I began this experiment with a sweeping blue arc, then a minor gray blob. If you rotate the canvas below by 90 degrees counter-clockwise, you can see that the original brushstrokes trace the outline of a skull. I toyed with the idea of constructing an abstract portrait, but those first brush marks did not inspire […]

Ghostly Leaf

The idea today was to further explore the interaction of two colors: ultramarine blue and quinacridone burnt orange. I began with a swath of blue. I drew a brush loaded with burnt orange across the wet blue field, pausing at intervals for the pigment to bloom into the background.   Before executing the composition above, […]

Yellow and Red

Even though I started this composition with dark blue, it turned out to be mainly about yellow and red. The dark tones seem to recede into the background as the red thrusts forward underlined by the yellow. The exception is the dark streak that overlaps the red orb. The background forces its way forward.  

Pale Blue Abstract

Yesterday’s lesson was to clarify my relationship to the world through the marks I make and the colors I apply to paper, and not on their meaning. That is a very clear artist’s statement, but unfortunately it contains no information about how to accomplish that mission. There must be  a starting point, a first mark on the […]

Rough Free Form

I used different materials for today’s watercolor. I used a very heavy paper (300 pound), square in format. I drew a charcoal outline and painted inside the lines. I wanted to continue my version of ‘action painting’ by crumpling it up and returning it to its flattened state. I knew it would be different than the […]


The thought was to document the ‘before’ and ‘after’ condition of the desk where I paint. I have  dozens of brushes and they are disposed variously in empty tea canisters, pill bottles and the odd hollowed-out bamboo segment. Below is a representation of part of my desk showing some of the brush receptacles as well as dishes I […]

Watercolor Print

I’m back at home, a bit tired from the drive, but looking forward to painting. Today’s watercolor experiment: I took a peek at the next lesson in the Tate Watercolour Manual, Lessons from the Great Masters by Tony Smibert and Joyce Townsend, the book I am currently using to improve my technique. I did not read the instructions in […]

Applied Washes

Today’s watercolor experiment: I started today’s experiment with an idea to execute a circular watercolor wash. However, I could not control both the curvature and the flow of pigment from the brush, at the same time. The initial brush stroke was resulting from a relatively dry brush. I executed several disconnected curves with ultramarine blue […]

Paint Now, Add Title Later

Today’s watercolor experiment: I followed my, by now, standard process of starting with a blank watercolor block, adding liquid frisket, or masking fluid and shaking and shimmying (the paper) until I am satisfied with the design. Only today I took it outside. Process: I poured the frisket on my paper, probably a bit too much, […]

That’s What I’m Talking About

Today’s watercolor experiment: Yesterday I briefly talked a little bit about the difference between photography and painting, the way I see it. I take some photographs as reference, intended to be used as the basis of a painting, and others as photographs. My artwork used to be exclusively photography, back in the days of film. But […]

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