Monday, August 7, 2017

Color Mixing Demonstration

I will be releasing a series of videos that demonstrate techniques that I reference in my new book, "Abstract Painting: The Elements of Visual Language".  While shooting the videos, we decided to do a number of short chapters on color mixing that could be available at no cost.  This is the first in the series.  I hope you enjoy it!

It is really fun to explore various groups of primary colors this way. It gives you real insight into the potential of specific pigments.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Back from Madeline Island

Wow!  And island in Lake Superior is a fabulous place to spend a week.  Here are a few pictures of our Series As Process workshop at Madeline Island School of the Arts. In addition to the workshop space being well appointed and well laid out, the meals were terrific, there were beverages of all sorts available at all times (water, seltzer, coffee, soda, wine) at no cost, great wifi in every building, and bicycles available for anyone's use.  The staff seemed delighted to attend to our every need.  The studio is accessible twenty-four hours, so students could work at night if they chose, or go in early in the morning.  And the island is beautiful!

Big Bay State Park is just up the road, with hiking trails, beaches, places to jump into the lake.  And the Big Bay Town Park offers access to a beautiful lagoon and an awesome beach, with canoe and kayak rentals.  With daylight extending until about 9:00 pm, I was able to explore both of these parks in the evenings, hiking along the shore, canoeing in the lagoon, and I did jump in the lake (brrrr!) too.

I will definitely be returning to MISA in 2019, July 22 - 26.

One Student's work on one project

Demo example, in process


Thursday, July 20, 2017


I have decided to post a list of FAQs.  There are a number of questions that come up pretty frequently, both in workshops and via e-mail, so this might be useful.  Take a look here.


Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Demo at Edgewater Gallery

Last Saturday I demonstrated my painting techniques at Edgewater Gallery, in Middlebury, Vermont. I had never done that before - demonstrated in a non-workshop setting - and was not sure what to expect. It was REALLY fun! We will plan to do it again, maybe in the dark of winter with vibrant, warm colors.

Thanks for visiting.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Teaching At Omega

Here are a few photos of my recent workshop at Omega, "Intuitive Painting".  Thanks again to all who participated! 
GREAT studio space, with lots of light


Playing with Cut Paper

Playing with a viewfinder

Cut up, re-assemble

My examples of Ways To Make Shapes

Juxtaposing unlike elements

Busy busy BUSY!!!

Student work on the wall

More work on the wall, a series by one student
Thanks for visiting.  I will be teaching again at Omega next year, June 3 - 8, 2018.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Elements of Visual Language is AVAILABLE!!

Finally, the book I have been working on all winter and spring (having made notes on it for the preceding year or so), is now available from Amazon.  You can download an excerpt here.

Abstract Painting: The Elements of Visual Language emphasizes the practice of observing your work as it develops, without judgment or self-criticism.  My hope is that it allows you to be more personally expressive and authentic in your artistic explorations.

Hope you enjoy it!  There are more in the pipeline.  And a video coming out later this summer.

Click here to purchase.

Friday, June 2, 2017

A Look at the Rauschenberg Show

Julie Fe Fan Balzer posted an amazing group of photos of the Rauschenberg show that is currently up at MOMA.  It is called Robert Rauschenberg Among Friends, and includes works by Jasper Johns, Cy Twombly and others. I am cheating and posting a screen shot of one of Julie's photos.  This is a close-up of Minutiae, 1954, part of a collaboration Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns did with the choreographer Merce Cunningham, and the composer John Cage.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Video of Visual Improvisation

Here is the video created by Dog On A Boat Studios for Hudson River Valley Art Workshops.  I posted it on Facebook earlier, but now it is up on YouTube.

Monday, May 22, 2017

More from Hudson River Valley Art Workshops

Here are some REAL photographs of the Hudson River ValleyArt Workshops workshop the other week, taken by Adina Pease, who also produced a short video, which you can see on my Facebook page.

Oops, Cornelius, my alligator, got into this shot.  He was not painting.

Good to be color coordinated with my painting.
 I plan to be back at Hudson River Valley in 2019!  Thanks for visiting my blog.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Hudson River Valley Art Workshops

A few pix from Visual Improvisation at Hudson River Valley Art Workshops.

This is all student work, except the chocolate chip cookies, which are made by our host.

Thanks for visiting!

Monday, April 24, 2017

Abstract Painting For Textile Artists

I taught this four-day workshop at Helen Day Art Center last week, geared towards textile artists with not much experience using acrylic paints. Most of the participants fit that description, but there were a few more experienced painters who were not textile artists.  I often get textile artists and recovering quilters in my classes, so this seemed like a natural fit. 

Here are a few pictures from the workshop. These are all Student Work, except for the photo of me fooling around at my table.

Thanks for visiting.  Check out Helen Day Art Center's other workshop offerings.  Among the people who teach there are Galen Cheney, Suzanne Siegel, Claire Desjardins, and others that I admire. 

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Playing with Orange and Blue

Here is a short series of demo pieces I did in Green Valley, AZ, the other week.  We were using paint, collage, and mark-making to explore complementary colors.  These are all 10"x10".

Green Valley Demo #1:  In this piece I have almost equal percentages of blue and orange. I find that the most challenging ratio. 

Green Valley Demo #2:  Here I was playing around more with a range of value and saturation in the orange.  I love the pinks, corals, and salmon colors you can get in this range.

Green Valley Demo #3:  This is probably about 75 - 80% orange.  I am tempted to cover over the whole bottom left section with orange....

Green Valley Demo #3 Alternate:  OK, I just did that in Photoshop to see what it would look like. What do you think? 

Green Valley Demo #4:  Here I let the orange get really washed out.  More desert-like.  I love the contrast of the very light neutralized orange with the brighter colors in the center, and just teeny bits of blue. 
DO try this at home.  Choose one pair of complementary colors:  blue and orange, red and green, or purple and yellow.  Use as many versions of each color as you like, mixing them to vary the hue slightly (orange, red-orange, yellow-orange, but not red and not yellow), and mixing with white and very light gray to vary the values.  Paint, collage, use crayons, scratch into the surface with a razor.  The techniques are up to you.  The key is to do a SERIES of them exploring various proportions of the two colors.  Have fun!