Wednesday, October 28, 2020
Sunday, October 25, 2020
Wow! Where did this week go? I looked at the blog and realized it has been a week since I last posted. I do have an excuse though! A week ago we welcomed our newest granddaughter to the family! Maya Rose joins big sisters Bri and Nora. Everyone is healthy and happy and we are thrilled to be the grandparents of six wonderful children! Now I need to try to get a photo with everyone in it!!
I am back to the easel this week wrapping up my river series and getting ready for another month of fun on Patreon. Sneak peek....we will be adding structures to the landscape!
Here are a couple of photos. Nora was so excited to hold the baby! I try to make the blog about art but I do plan do occasionally sprinkle photos of what is happening in my world other than painting!
Saturday, October 17, 2020
This month on Patreon we are focused on painting atmospheric conditions such as fog, mist and rain. Join us for the fun! www.patreon.com/karenmargulis
Thursday, October 15, 2020
Yesterday I had the pleasure of doing a Facebook Live video demo for the Booth Western Art Museum. It was part of their 'Art for Lunch' series. I decided to do an autumn landscape inspired by my recent camping trip along the Tallulah River in North Georgia. You can watch the demo by clicking on the link below:
Monday, October 12, 2020
Friday, October 09, 2020
Tuesday, October 06, 2020
Friday, October 02, 2020
I wanted to simple way to see my monthly progress. I had recommitted myself to daily painting this year and I was on a roll. I had paintings all over the studio! I had to store them and put them away but I wanted a way to see my progress. One great way to see daily painting progress is to hang them up in the studio. Another way is to see them digitally...in the form of a photo collage.
It is always a good thing to take some time to review the work you do over the course of a few weeks. It helps you to see what you did well and what you might need to work on. One way to do this is to physically set out your paintings ....line them up against a wall and study them. Take notes. Is there a common thread that runs through all of them? Is there something that you are doing consistently well...or not so well?
Ideally, this evaluation should be done every few months. There is a simple way to do this instead of taking the paintings out physically.....create a digital collage. I discovered a very easy to use collage maker online and it is FREE called www.befunky.com.
All you do is upload the photos you want, choose your layout and either auto fill or drag your photos where you want them in the layout. Simple. The collage can be saved as a jpg and can be used in many ways...make cards, Facebook banners, promotions of all kinds. It is also an excellent way to see a collection of your work all in one place!
I am sharing a collage of some of the still life paintings I did last month on Patreon. Join us! www.patreon.com/karenmargulis
Wednesday, September 30, 2020
It was an interesting month. I ventured into uncharted territory and it was a challenge. It was still life month with my Patreon group. I had long promised it but put it off. I am a landscape painter. I usually avoid the still life. Not because I don't like them but because they are a struggle. I know that to overcome learning curves one needs to practice so I should be doing more work with the still life and not less but I just never make the time for them.
I always give the advice to paint what you love. It is easier to paint with expression when you have a strong emotional connection to your subject. When I am painting my favorite subjects I get into the zone more readily. I paint from my heart. But when I am faced with a subject that doesn't interest me as much it is much more difficult to connect and have success. But sometimes we need to push past this and consider challenging subjects as exercises to help us grow as artists. I did this during the month of September and it feels great! I learned some things about painting the still life and I am excited to do more. It was a month that pushed me and I needed that!
Next month on Patreon I am back to my comfort zone and we will be focused on painting the moody landscape! Consider joining us for the fun! www.patreon.com/karenmargulis
Friday, September 25, 2020
Wednesday, September 23, 2020
Monday, September 21, 2020
One of the things that helps me grow as an artist is to study the work of those with more experience and whose work inspired me. There is no better way to see what is happening in the world of pastel then to see the annual Pastel Society of America's exhibition. Usually held in New York City, this year it is all online. I am thrilled to share that one of my paintings was accepted into the exhibition and received and award! (more on this below) Please follow the links so that you can enjoy this wonderful exhibition in the comfort of your home!
Pastel Society of America 2020: Enduring Brilliance at The Butler Institute Online
This exhibition, drawn from The Pastel Society of America’s annual fall exhibition, features works by some of the nation’s premier pastel painters. The Pastel Society of America (PSA) is the oldest organization of its kind in the nation. A primary mandate of the PSA is to provide a forum for the exhibition of works by the most accomplished pastel artists in the United States and abroad. Since 1972, the PSA Annual Exhibition: Enduring Brilliance!, held at the National Arts Club in New York City, has been the premier event for pastel artists worldwide.
To see the entire exhibition click here:
To see all of the accepted paintings in the Butler Institute follow this link:
To see a slide show of the award winning paintings click on the following link. I enjoyed 'flipping' through this virtual catalog!
Here is a closer look at my accepted painting. 'Morning at the Pond'. It is 9x12.
Friday, September 18, 2020
Wednesday, September 16, 2020
Before I started painting my hobby was photography. While my kids were small it was an easy way to get in touch with my creative side. Back then we learned on a manual camera with slide film. It was not very forgiving. You didn't want to just keep taking photos in hopes of getting a good one like we can now with digital. You had to plan. You had to anticipate. You also had to be lucky sometimes. I am glad for this lesson in patience. It was also a lesson in learning how to see. I learned how to see the light. These lessons served me well as I transitioned into painting. I was reminded by an important lesson this weekend.
We were on our maiden camping trip with our new camper Joy. (More on this soon) It was a quick weekend trip to test the camper's systems. It was a mostly overcast weekend so when sunset time rolled around we weren't very hopeful. We decided to take a walk....just in case. We were rewarded for our efforts.....almost. We could see a glimmer of fiery light through the trees but we couldn't get close enough. We decided to hop in the car and drive around the bend. We were on a lake with many fingers of land so it was hard to know which way to go.
We drove a few miles and it just got darker. No sunset. Then we rounded the bend and there it was....a fiery sunset up close and personal. We stopped and I took lots of photos and then I remembered the lesson I learned in my photography days and later reinforced by Stan Sperlak in his wonderful workshops.....ALWAYS LOOK BEHIND YOU. Don't forget to turn around and see what is happening behind you. It is often just as spectacular or interesting then what is in front of you. In this case it was. The formally 'brown' tree trunks were glowing orange from the setting sun. It was mesmerizing and it inspired my first painting from our camping adventures.
Monday, September 14, 2020
- The paper accepted both hard and soft pastel equally well. And as I said before, it feels good....the pastels just glide on.
- I found I had more success when I made bold and direct strokes. The paper does take several layers but I found that the marks want to stay in place rather than be blended. (this is a good thing if you tend to over blend)
- I was able to use fixative with success. I decided midway through the painting to change color scheme so after a little fixative I could add more pastel. However some spots got too slick from fixative and I could get pastel on top.
- I didn't use a wet underpainting today but I do remember that while the paper takes a wet underpainting, the cellulose fibers seem to suck in the wet. You tend not to get the drips and blooms like you get with other papers.
Here are two links to other posts I wrote about Pastelmat paper:
We are exploring the still life over on my Patreon group. You can see this apple painting as a step by step demo! Just $4 for the monthly pledge. www.patreon.com/karenmargulis