Personal Art Blog

Sharing the lessons I teach at the Artist Guild and the personal discoveries in my art.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Poppies!

Poppies!
6"x8" oil on canvas panel  $150
Purchase HERE

Artist Note.
I really love this type of poppy
with the white next to 
the dark center.
I painted it a while ago
keeping it close because I
 really liked the touch of blue!


Personal Note
Many thanks for the wonderful 
sharing of ideas and hints regarding 
my vision needs
 after cataract surgery.
Apparently, many of you have 
experienced the issue.

I am having my other cataract 
removed in the morning. YAY!
The first one has revealed
a crisp, bright new view
of the world
- amazing -

BUT
My brain has NOT co-operated
with the other eye which is 
close-sighted so the monovision
 is totally out 
and "readers" will be needed.
One in every room!

BUT
another blogger has shared 
what she has done 
and it has me all excited. 
I have to wait a couple of months
for the eyes to settle then 
I will pass it on it it works!


Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Waterlily Pleasure!


Waterlily Pleasure
10" x  8" oil on panel  $225.SOLD

Artist Note
This is another with lots of greens and blues.
The two colors I seem to gauge the best atthe moment.
 I love painting the
waterlily ponds so it has been a pleasure.
 It has gone through
lots of changes though
and I learned from each change.
 It was all about the values of the water.
Too light and it competed with the main lily.


Personal Note
I want to thank all of you who took the time to
pass on information regarding
the lens choice for cataract surgery.
The doctor believes that regular
distance vision would be best...
mentioning that dreadedword...AGE as the reason.
He found monovision to be
less successful
in his more"mature" patients.
Stab to the heart!
I thought cataracts only happened
to mature folk!
so now we know there are
levels of mature, my friends!

So goodbye visions of
having no reading glasses
and I will be forever
searching for them...
unless any of you can pass on helpful hints.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Light On the Lily Pond



Light On The Lily Pond

6"x6" oil on canvas panel $110. SOLD


Artist Note

This is a beautiful lily pond 
which was illuminated
by a
single ray of sunshine.
Although I painted this from 
the photo I took, 
it was still 
very clear in my mind
making it so much easier 
to capture the mood.

I have always been grateful
for my visual memory.
My hubby, bless him, has not
much visual recall.
For him,  directions are given
 by miles and compass, north, south etc,
whereas I see the blue fence,
the yellow house, the big tree, etc.
I bet most of you are the same
as I am.

A little personal note.
As you probably have noticed,
 I have not been posting
anywhere near as frequently
during this past year.

Paintings are taking 
MUCH longer
because I am having  some
problems (quite a bit) with my vision 
but it will be corrected 
in a couple of weeks
when I will be having 
cataract surgery. 
Second eye early next month
Alleluia!

I wonder if any of you have had 
or know anyone who has had
experience with the monovision - 
where one eye is corrected for distance 
and one for close up?
Would you share with me, please?

I have been posting my older work
on Instagram and Facebook.
I hate to have worked so hard 
to build up to build up a following
only to have it all disappear due to 
age and mother nature.

Thanks for sticking with me.




Monday, May 21, 2018

Meet Miss Nova Rae

Meet Miss Nova Rae
8"x8" oil on canvas - gifted

Artist Note

Yes, I know,
this is a bit of a surprise
as I do not do portraits...

BUT
this is the
precious granddaughter
of a dear friend
who has done me a
special and generous favor.

I knew I wanted to
show my appreciation
BUT,
what can you give someone
who has everything?
A painting?

Taste is so subjective
so the choice
had to be right.
What better than to capture
a moment in time
of her Special Treasure.

I loved painting Nova Rae.
It was a challenge for sure
but every time
 I would see this child
I’d catch my breath.
Her eyes were large and thoughtful.
Her skin - perfect
and
she had the neatest outfits!!!
 I knew I wanted to paint her.

My friend got teary-eyed when
I gave it to her.
It meant she liked itπŸ’•


Tuesday, May 15, 2018

The Rio Chama, Abiquiu, N.M.




The Rio Chama, Abiquiu, N.M.
6”x8”  oil on canvas panel. $150. SOLD


Artist Note
One of the most gorgeous spots 
I have ever painted. 
 Over the years I have captured it
in all seasons but the monsoon season
  with cloudy skies casting random shadows
has to be my favorite. 

There is a particular time when
the sun cuts through a gap and
shines across the river. 
It is magical.

Photographing this painting was
rather difficult due to the blue of the
mountains appearing far 
bluer than on the paintings.
It took forever to get it close.
seriously...
I could have painted another painting!

Anyone know a solution to this problem?

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Round Nest in Square!


Nest in Square

24"x24"  oil on canvas SOLD

Artist Nest.
I LOVE this one!

This nest took a while and I enjoyed 
having something to paint on
between my busy schedule.
Can you spot the ladybugs?

I am in a great gallery here in Las Cruces.
-they carry my larger works -
and although my art sales 
have been going
rather well during
the last couple of months,
 I was still really surprised 
when they called to say it had sold 
after only a couple of days.
Why?
No special show and
it was still on the floor 
propped against
a chair leg!

The only reason I am relating this 
is because I hear some artists getting
 all hung up about what they perceive to 
be a poor placement
of their painting
 in a show or gallery
but, I have been everywhere
in many different galleries...
in  the back room, 
the corridor, dark corners, 
even left out for days on a patio...
BUT
all it takes is for the right person to see it.
Because when someone sees a painting 
that resonates in their heart
 they will usually buy it or remember it.

That is why the internet has opened
up such wonderful opportunities
for artists and especially the ones 
who cannot find an established gallery
or place to show their work.

A far larger audience gives 
artists a much better chance to be seen.

There is a discussion about not needing
galleries now with the internet. 
I think for some that may be true 
but I want galleries to survive 
because there is nothing
like actually putting your eyes close up 
to the painting and absorbing the 
artists technique.


Any thoughts?

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Cerro Pedernal Storm



Cerro Pedernal Storm 
Near Ghost Ranch, NM

8x6" oil on canvas panel  $150.SOLD


Artist Note.

Georgia O'Keeffe's ashes are spread
at the top of this mountain.

I enjoyed an annual visit 
for five consecutive years at
  Ghost Ranch, NM.
A stunningly gorgeous area in 
northern New Mexico.

Sometimes with an artist friend 
and other times with my
hubby who would patiently
read while I painted.

The water you see is Lake Abiquiu
- an important reservoir 
for this high desert area.

The Plein Air Convention (2018)
which was held recently in Santa Fe,
enjoyed a painting trip out there
 and I confess to being totally envious.



Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Working Colander!



The Red Colander
6x8in oil on canvas panel $150.
Purchase SOLD

ARTIST NOTE
I have painted my colander so many times.
It is an old friend
Easy to paint?...nope!
But definitely invigorating fun.

It has taken longer than I  expected!
 I thought I was off and running
back to painting BUT...noooo!
This one was a struggle
 and only finally, am I pleased with it.
The colander is the star so the blueberries
could not dominate. That meant a sheen 
but not the shine from wet ones.
Try that and see what I mean.


I guess I couldn't expect to resume
easily after such an intense
period of moving.
Emotional as well as exhausting.
My heart has to be in
its right place to paint well.

Another aggravating thing is that my
 Google account
has to be signed into
after every single visit to a blogger...
It happened after an update.
Bummer. I comment on a blog
and up it comes this unfriendly command
asking for account and password
but then wipes off what I wrote.
The weird thing is
I have to comment something
 before the command pops up.
Anyone have any hints?



Wednesday, April 4, 2018

.Hydrangeas.



Hydrangeas 
8x6' oil primed linen on panel   SOLD


Artist Note.
I recently moved and a good friend
brought over a magnificent
Hydrangea plant. Another friend brought
me a Calla Lily plant
so I was in hog heaven painting
both of them. 

This was a class demo and went
 much easier than the first one!





Friday, March 30, 2018

Calla In The Hydrangeas



Calla In The Hydrangeas
8"x6"  oil on canvas panel $150.Sold.


A Happy Easter or A Happy Passover
A special time for us all.

Artist Note

The move is over and we
are almost settled in...that is
not exactly right....my hubby settled in 
the very first hour of the second day!
Good to see him so happy.

I have missed my painting terribly.
I have still been teaching regularly but
my quiet painting time 
has been zip.
For me, it doesn't flow back right away. 
It takes several sessions of an intensive
submersion. 
Are any of you the same way?

Anyway - this painting was the 12th
try on the same subject. Ha!
The hydrangeas changed a lot
but the lily stayed pretty much the same
for the duration.

P.S.

I did paint kitchen cabinets and walls
but it is definitely not the same joy!



.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Valentine!


Repost

Artist Note

Happy Valentine's Day to YOU

...and my wonderful,
amazing New Mexico. It is not called
The Land Of Enchantment for nothing.
I love it and am grateful I found it...
or it found me!

Lots of sorting out and making floor plans.
I feel like an architect! 
We are being professionally moved.
Downsizing sounds easy
but we have to make sure 
everything fits
and accessories like 
lamps and paintings
have a home.
Or...
we will have to pay to move
what doesn't fit - out.

Enjoy your day.
If you don't have a Valentine
please remember
the most 
precious one of all is YOU!


Tuesday, February 6, 2018

orchid study

Orchid Study
6x8in oil on canvas panel NFS

Artist Note
Repost...
this one goes back years.

The first time I painted an orchid
I knew I would have
to get really familiar with its structure. 
Their center is very intricate and precise...
not easy for someone like me
who paints very loosly.

I don't think I ever posted this study 
when I finished it because I
wanted to keep it for future reference.


We have a moving date!
Let Heaven and Angels Sing!


House appraised full VA loan 
and a lovely family will be moving into
what has been our very happy home.

 Moving in two weeks.
Downsizing from 2500sq ft
to 850sq ft!!!
hahahahahahaha

  Think of me, please, and
remember us in your prayers or
just send good vibes 
for a smooth move. 

This will be my last post 
until after
it is all over with.
Well, maybe one for Valentines Day!

I will keep posting my 
old images on Instagram
juliefordoliverart
just to keep my name out there.

Happy painting days
😍 good friends. 



Thursday, February 1, 2018

Adding Phthalo!


Adding Phthalo

9x8 oil on Black Canvas

Work in Progress.

Artist Note.

A repost.

A more decorative style painting
with a brighter palette.

Artist Note.

This was a demo using

Thalo instead of Ultramarine
Magenta instead of Perm Alizarin.

First, I paint right on the front of 
the clear glass jug 
with my Phthalo blue and then a
bit of the yellow  to make it greener
for another layer in the middle.

Why?...because I didn't
have anything in the right color
large enough to hold the peonies.

Above showing the 
painted front of a clear glass jug

A quick block-in

The black canvas
makes it easy to get the value pattern

This is still based on a
limited palette but replacing the
Ultra blue and Alizarin.
REASON?
Sometimes, what you need/want to paint
cannot be managed with just one
limited palette. 
If you are painting near the coast for 
example, the aqua of the water
will need a green/blue.

Lively spring greens have a freshness
which the red in the Ultramarine blue
neutralizes too much. 

To make clear purples the Phthalo needs 
a cooler red than even the Alizarin
 so a substitute
with the Magenta works perfectly.
Here is the limited  palette
for this painting.

Cad Yellow light
Orange 
Magenta
Phthalo Blue
Black
Titanium White



Monday, January 29, 2018

How I changed an old painting - repost.


Classical still life  AFTER changes

20"x16"  oil on canvas  - unfinished

FIRST Version - below















ARTIST NOTE
This was painted
after taking a
workshop from
Qiang Huang and I was quite pleased
a few with areas of it but this was
back before
I started to use my
Fracturing Technique.
The only parts I
liked were the
brush marks
on the lower cloth.
I copied exactly what he did
because I love Qiang's brushwork!
After some time
the analytical part of my brain kicked in.






















Look at the way
it is all lined up.
DUH....
what was I thinking!
Have to learn to watch
out for the tangents.

I lightly sanded
the old surface then
rubbed a little
linseed oil with a
small amount of
Gamsol added.














I changed the
shape of the vase
 into a pitcher so it
would curve into
the painting and also
moved it in from the
edge. I lowered one
of the peaches and
got rid of the middle
lemon in the small
bowl.  I brought
forward the base of
the small dish holding
the lemon slices by
making it deeper so
it no longer lined up
with the grape.















Then I made the back wall
lighter so the jug would fit
into the passage of light.
I needed to move the
eye around and away
from the top right of
the painting so I
added a slice near the
left edge. I intend to fill
out more of the eucalypti
stalk later. I added fresh
paint all over so I could
start to fracture.

At this point the painting starts to speak to me and I listen.
I have to ask myself what I like and what I do NOT like.
Looking at it in the mirror I decide I should dump it.
BUT...darn it, I have a class I am doing this in front of
so  I will have to ...
excuse me,
but I cannot resist...Keep Calm and Carry On!

I realize I do NOT like the dark area of grapes PLUS
the lower two dark corners. It was like having an arrow
pointing down off the bottom!

What to do? Does it matter?
I decided it did - if only as a valuable learning experience.
I wanted more color...and for it not to be so stiff.
This was a personal taste issue more than correction.
I already had some clementines
so I changed the grapes into an orange and lemon
then automatically the peaches appeared to change
just by using the leaves to make them become clementines.
I took the cloth all the way to one corner and
added the fringe to break up the large dark area
...still to be perfected.








The image above shows developing the fringe.
I ended up taking it further back on the table
Placing the glass over it first to make corrections
on the glass see if I would like it






















I know I have to do some finessing in
several areas to satisfy my
unresolved feelings about this painting.
I think we all have paintings like this and it can be
a great way to discover our reactions to many
aspects of our artwork.

In my case - style change and knowledge growth.
Look what has happened on the glass since I did the very top
pic. An "off with its head " moment and got rid of the fringe.

Made the background lighter too.

 Will this EVER be finished...

Does it matter? That is the important question.

Am I enjoyed playing around with it?
You betcha! I learn a lot by risking ruining a painting than
having the attitude of trying to save it, just to sell.
Maybe this one will never be completed.
But as a learning experience, it was very informative.



Friday, January 26, 2018


Mixed Bouquet.
6"x 6" oil on canvas  $110.  SOLD

This was a demo to show the importance
of having a transparent underpainting.

Artist Note.
 I had a request
to repost this one from last year . 

I am a big believer in leaving
some of the darker areas in
 a painting, transparent. 
There is a certain glow which 
doesn't happen with opaque
dark areas  - in fact I find
they can look, pretty "chalky."

My transparent colors 
used for the demo were:
Viridian
 Transparent Oxide Yellow TYO
Alizarin (permanent)
Ultramarine Blue.

 After a wash of TOY 
I did a mass shape using  Viridian.
Next I lifted out the lighter areas
using a rag.

I followed this with more lifting
with a small amount of Gamsol
on my rag and a scrubby brush.
This was to hit my lightest areas. 

I added Viridian and Ultra 
with touch of Aliz to make darker
greens in jar and leaves.

I added more TOY to back and front.
and shadowed the area 
behind the jar
 linking into the dark leaves

Bringing in color but making
sure to keep it all transparent.

Then the fun part - I fractured it!
(See FREE tutorial on tools and what
I use for fracturing  HERE )

I enjoyed bringing it back 
into form by
 taking advantage 
of the broken areas to add 
interest 

Now into the opaque colors.
I added 
Titanium 
Permanent Yellow and 
Permanent Red light to my palette

I started using a knife and a brush
at this point. 
I left the flowers 
very abstract on purpose. 
That was the easiest part -
 because they were all imaginary.

There are transparent areas
peeking through the opaque 
marks, and to me it makes 
for an exciting surface.
Thick - thin,
transparent - opaque,
warm - cool.

If you are not already using the
transparent colors - or have not 
used them for a while then
please let me know if you are 
inspired to try them.

Happy Painting
Enjoy your weekend.




Thursday, January 25, 2018

Flowers and Stripes



Flowers and Stripes
8"x6" oil on linen panel $150 SOLD

Artist Note.
I am always fascinated with stripes.
The hard part is fracturing them
so they are not hard and straight
but still look like stripes..

I was playing around with  leaving
the natural linen color as a border.
It didnt work for my style.
Bummer!

There is a wonderful artist
who does this very effectivly.
Check him out  - see link below.
  Click on
one of his landscapes to enlarge
and see how effective it is.

Jeff Cochran


A little aside for those who know
what is going on in my life.
The house was just appraised
on Tuesday by the VA. We have no idea
how long before we get the results.
Fingers crossed!

Friday, January 19, 2018

The Ginger Glass Vase


The Ginger Glass Vase

6"x6" oil on Raymar panel $125. SOLD


Artist Note
A lot of work goes into making 
a full size still life onto
such a small board.

I was trying something new...
so, please
let me know that when
you first saw it 
you could tell it was mine.


Saturday, January 13, 2018

Poppy and Red




Poppy Red
6'x6' oil on Raymar panel 110.
SOLD

Artist Note
I have a new red tube of paint
I wanted to try out.
Holbein's Rose Dore
I thought it was a cool red.
Wrong!
Look below 
The swatches are of transparent reds.

I found
Rose Dore 
to be a beautiful transparent red.

All colors cool down adding white but the 
Rose Dore managed to stay warm
by comparison. 
I like it.
I will add it to my box for when 
I want a glowing, transparent underpainting

I went to the store and 
bought a beautiful red silk poppy 
and held it under a light.
It was fun to paint ...
and not so much fun to photograph.
It took as long to get the above image
closest to the real one as it did to paint it.


P.S.
House under contract again!
February 21st closing.
Fingers crossed. We really like
the family. A military family.



Saturday, January 6, 2018

Farmers Market #25



Farmers Market #25
8"x8" oil on Raymar panel SOLD


Artist Note

I thought a spot of sunshine for my
blog followers in the brutally 
cold areas
would be a reminder of what
lies ahead for you all!
Sending warmest thoughts
your way.
Keep safe!

I enjoyed painting this and kept adding 
to the composition...putting in and taking out.
taking me time and having a good time.

It is from sketches and photos
I have done here at the 
Farmers Market in Las Cruces -
but I took out the buildings along 
Main Street.
Could be in France!


I enjoyed the most marvelous
time before and after Christmas,
 even though we all had to clear out
of the house
for viewings a couple of times.

The kids took it well and piled
all their "stuff" back into cars
  because the closets had to
be kept neat!

No sibling fights,
lots of laughter and reminiscing
about good times in the house.
Perfect.
Now the perfect buyer is welcome
at any time.