Personal Art Blog

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

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Asian Pears


Asian Pears 
8x6' oil on panel SOLD

Artist Note
The fruit was a gift from a friends garden 
She is an artist so she left a 
couple with branches. Happy smiles!

I tried something different with this one.
I first painted the panel with gray gesso
and then I painted it as I would
a vignette in watercolor.
I really liked the effect in a frame - 
it kind of makes its own border
so I am going to do some more this way.

Here are some greens made
from the 
Windsor Newton Perylene Black
Look how natural they are.

Top row - Lemon and P Black
Middle row - Yellow deep and P Black
Bottom row - ochre and P Black

The 3 blue/gray spots are with white added.
You can see why it makes good greens. I think it 
would be perfect for the ZORN palette
(Vermillion, yellow ochre, black, white)
because it is a beautiful blue-black


I am picking up steam with my painting.
I will be posting more often as I continue
to get comfortable with paint again.
Thanks for sticking with me...
you are the BEST!


Monday, September 17, 2018

Video Demo - Landscape!




Artist Note.
I came across this old video of me painting a landscape.
It was painted on Senso linen. 6x8'
It is at a MUCH faster speed than I paint!
Hope you enjoy it.

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Waterlily Light #2

Waterlily Light #2
6x8" oil on panel   $150.
Purchase HERE

Artist Note
Here I am - back to the Lilypond. 
I am really captivated by the 
three components...
Water, plants, and light. 
It appears almost
 magical to me when
the sun casts through the shaded areas.

I can see why Monet devoted 
so many years to painting
his waterlily series. 
He bought the land and 
diverted water from a stream
to start designing what he wanted.
Seven years of planting, building
and creating.
Then he spent 30 years 
- the rest of his life-
painting it!

The two 80-ft oval rooms
in the 
Orangerie of the Tuileries. Paris,
where the enormous and stunning
murals of 
his water garden are shown
are often described as the
"Sistine Chapel of Impressionism."


Thinking about all the people
and animals who are 
suffering in
The Carolinas 
in the aftermath of Florence.
Sending heartfelt prayers




Sunday, September 9, 2018

Anemones plus Hint


Anemones
8x6 oil on canvas panel SOLD

Artist Note
I really enjoyed painting this one. 
I can see red again!
And painting every day 
I feel the old flow 
is coming back.


I sent out my Fall Newsletter
with this new painting in it and 
was really pleased with the response. 
I am going to paint it larger
and see if I can capture the same 
color harmony. 
Easier said than done!

Artist Hint
I have added to my palette
Windsor Newton/Perylene Black .
if you do not already use it,
TRY IT!
It makes fabulous greens 
with different yellows. 

It also makes a beautiful blue/black
when white is added.

I am excited to find a replacement 
for my LeFranc Cassel Earth black paint. 
which I previously used for olive greens.
This Perylene black produces a much 
greater range of beautiful greens...
and I still get the olive with adding ochre.

I was told LeFranc & Bourgeois had a fire
and that is why it is impossible to get their
paint anymore.  
They were the oldest 
European oil paint manufacturer
and their Titanium White was a joy to use.
Sure hope they come back.





Monday, September 3, 2018

Santa Fe Adobe


Santa Fe Adobe
6"x8" oil on canvas panel  $150 SOLD

Artist Note.

Most of you know how much
I love living here in the southwest 
and this is the painting which
got me back into the flow
of painting again
after having cataracts removed.

I feel like a whole new person.
 I am enjoying seeing clearly.
Life is good
... but the painting part of my life
has only just starting to flow 
instead
of hit and miss.


I have completed
several paintings 
and I am going to 
show them first in my newsletter.
It has been sadly neglected
so I am hoping to make amends.

If you feel you would enjoy 
getting it about four times a year
you can sign up on my website 
using link below

Enjoy your week.
Maybe I will be back before then.









Thursday, August 16, 2018

Fracturing from the Imagination. Step by Step.



Fracturing from the Imagination.

8x6in  oil on canvas panel   SOLD

This is a re-post I thought some of you would find interesting.
I am doing color charts galore...trying to rediscover my palette
since the cataracts removal


Artist Note

I love painting from my imagination.
Finally at the stage where I feel I know the lemon well enough
to paint without looking at one. I start off with a basic design
and then I respond to what the paint does on the canvas.
Here are the steps I took to do this piece.


First I randomly applied color
in two stages.
A thin underneath wash of colors
see the cool mauve and transp
yellow oxide.
Then I did the drawing of shapes
with a rigger  brush and dark paint.
Next I painted the warm red, lifting off
with the handy tool to expose underneath colors
leaving random areas and fruit, plain.




I added the dark at the top
and made a slightly darker
square at bottom right.
This was intuitive.
At this stage they were all going to be
lemons.







When I had put in the dark top
and moved down to place the darker area
I realized it was because I need another dark
so I made the lemon into a plum.
This is the great thing about painting
from the imagination. You have time to
listen to your inner art voice and
respond accordingly.
I paint at this stage in complete silence.
No music or story going on.



I usually start with the lightest and
focal point area as I did here.

Anyway, at this stage I feel  confident
that I can solve the rest of the painting
and as I feel the fracturing technique becoming
more and more natural

This post was in 2012 so by now the
fracturing has certainly become as natural as breathing.




Posted by Picasa

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Sunflowers and Daisies


Sunflowers & Daisies
10"x 8" oil on canvas panel  $250. SOLD



Artist Note
This is my first painting
with my new pupils!
Notice it is larger than my usual 6x8.
I am having a bit of trouble 
with the small size. 
Out of practice!

This is not my first painting
since cataract surgery
by any means,
 but it is my first completed one.
 My depth perception is
slightly askew.
 and I am having
to learn color without
seeing a green haze
Meaning lots of tossers! 
The only way to stop me
from painting over and over
on the same canvas, 
(trying to get it right,)
has been to razor it!
Bet you are saying...
been there, done that!

Anyway, I am very excited.
with my new vision
and 
look forward 
to the joys of painting
once more.



Sunday, July 22, 2018

A Little Vacation!



A trip to Portland, Oregon. 
with a day outing to Cannon Beach.
Surely one of the most 
beautiful beaches anywhere.

Four days after my second cataract surgery
I flew to Portland for a week.
A wonderful and much-needed visit
to see dear friends.

The sketches are from a previous trip...
one, where my eyes were not blurry from
all the drops I needed to put in!!

I painted from the balcony of the 
Hallmark Hotel,
chosen
so I could capture the
different atmospheric moods.
of Haystack, 
the amazing
monolith rock formation.

I was thrilled to meet two 
BLOGGING FRIENDS.

First, on the trip to Cannon Beach

Lauren Nelson was kind enough 
to drive up and meet me 
and my friend, Jan, for brunch.
           She is as delightful, warm and fun as
the person I know from the years
following her blog. 
(We share a love and respect for animal life.)

 A marvelous hour or so was spent in the 
Dragonfly Gallery, sharing what we 
liked and why...she is smart!
It was stimulating.
Thank you, Lauren, for making the time
to meet me. It will be a treasured memory.
Link to Lauren's blog HERE

A couple of days later I had the 
pleasure of a studio visit with 
another artist
 I have followed for many years.
Randall Tipton
What a guy!
Knowledgeable, articulate, generous and fun!
Patiently, he allowed me and my friend, Jan,
  to pour over his inspiring work,
answering questions and sharing painting
info. I felt like I was in heaven!
Jan and I left both carrying treasured
pieces of art.
Thank you, Randall, for the wonderful visit.

Link to Randall and I recommend his blog

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.