Wednesday, August 24, 2016

:: Always looking for inspiration ::

I'm seldom without inspiration for things to paint and recently we took a road trip down the Washington coast and it seemed that each place we went I found some beautiful scenes that were very inspiring to me.

It seems, after all, I am always looking and finding inspiration without realizing it.

Oysterville store - NVanBlaricom

The top photo is a location known as Oystervile on the Long Beach Peninsula. Its rich in history.  The day we were there the Oysterville Sea Farm was open (I think its open 7 days a week right now). The sun was shinning and I found the old cannery buildings very inspiring.

Beach Grass - NVanBlaricom

While still on the Long Beach Peninsula we were able to take long walks on the smooth looong sandy beach you see in the photo below.  It went for miles without many rocks or driftwood in sight. Seeing the sign and the grass before getting to the beach was inspiring to me.

Looong Beach - NVanBlaricom

The photo above was the typical morning on the Peninsula.  Long deserted beaches and lots of sand.

Puget Island Ferry boat ride - NVanBlaricom

A fun way to travel from Washington to Oregon is to ride the local ferry boat from Puget Island Washington to West Port Oregon.  It is a short ride and on a calm day it is very scenic and enjoyable.

I came home filled with inspiration.  It seems I am as inspired by so many local scenes that I should never run out of painting material.

Do you find painting inspiration everywhere you look like I do?

Thursday, August 04, 2016

:: Light on the Meadow ::

Light on the Meadow - N. Van Blaricom

The painting above, Light on the Meadow, practically painted its self.  I often wonder when a painting goes that easy if there wasn't a reason I was drawn to paint it.  Maybe some hidden message I should look for.  

I loved all the light in the field and the light coming thru the trees, landing on the pavement.  Maybe that alone was the reason I felt drawn to get this down on the canvas.  


As summer rolls along I am feeling pretty good about whittling away at my long list of books I wanted to read.  3 down and still more to go. Those that I have read have been enjoyable reads.  

The one I'm reading now, The Gaugun Connection, is proving to be different and keeps me looking forward to the next page. This is book one in a series of 9.  I'm not sure that I will continue to read all 9 but so far so good.


On another note.  We celebrated Miss Odessa's 12 birthday earlier this week. No hats or balloons, but a little roasted chicken for a lunch treat and a tiny bit of vanilla ice cream in the evening.   

Happy Birthday Odessa ... and many more.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

:: A Day at Crescent Beach ::

A Day at Crescent Beach-N.VanBlaricom
A Day at Crescent Beach, 8" x 10", oil on canvas board, © Nancy Van Blaricom

A month or so ago we were riding along the Strait (Juan de Fuca Strait ) and stopped at a well known beach on the Peninsula, Crescent Beach.  Usually there is a lot of people enjoying the sand and wading in the water, but this day there was only a handful of people.

It wasn't a particularly cold day, but we had an overcast sky that was touched with some pink.

I made sure and take some photos while we were there and although I tried to duplicate on canvas what I saw that day I never did get the results I was trying for.
I am continuing to practice the new to me painting methods I've recently felt were working for me.

It is a slow process.  Two steps forward, one step back it seems ... but I'm still feeling very positive.

Until I feel more comfortable with the new work  I will continue to share some of the work I've done since our move.

Pimiento in a Jar-N.VanBlaricom
Pimientos in Jar sketch

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

:: Growth Spurt ::

Recently, since our move, I've done some re-evaluating of my art.  I haven't been able to make the art I've been feeling or wanting to share.  Something is missing. 

Sequim Bay Water,  6" x 6" Oil on Canvas, © N. Van Blaricom
Sky at Port Williams,  6" x 6" Oil on Canvas, © N. Van Blaricom 2016

The work I want to produce is loose and more impressionistic.
Growth takes work and time dedicated to learning.

With a critical eye I'm evaluating my work. I see where I am weak and where I need to concentrate my efforts. I feel I'm up to the challenge.

Recently I found that I need to be brave and try things in my art that I hadn't before.  Maybe it was that I didn't have anyone to show me or tell me where I was going wrong.  Not too long ago I discovered a different method for me.  And I was happy with the results.

In the next few months I hope to share with you some growth in my work.
Until then ... the above photo is a painting from a couple of months ago.

I feel a growth spurt in the making. Wish me luck ... 

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

:: How I pick a subject as a series ::

One thing I really love about living here in Sequim is that we get some of the most amazing skies!  
This area is known as The Blue Hole.  We can have beautiful sun and blue sky above us and if you look out at the surrounding areas you would swear that a storm was brewing.  

A lot of times when I decide to upon a painting subject I choose to do some studies of it first. I need to become familiar with the scene before I try to capture it in something other than a sketch.  

Sky overlooking Bell Hill - N.VanBlaricom
Sky to the southeast over Bell Hill

About a month ago I took this photo in the late afternoon.  It started getting dark out and looked like it was going to rain off to the south east.  If you look at the upper right hand corner you can see the blue sky ... the blue hole.

Ink sketch of sky to the southeast over Bell Hill - N.VanBlaricom
Ink sketch 
I wanted to see if I could create the same drama on paper using my pen and paper.  It just doesn't feel the same as what I saw in the sky.  I see lines with no drama.

Marker sketch of sky to the southeast over Bell Hill - N.VanBlaricom
Marker sketch 
Then I decided to try using markers to create some emotion that read like the photo and sky that I saw.

Sky Over Bell Hill - N. Van Blaricom
Sky Over Bell Hill, 6" x 8", oil on canvas panel, © Nancy Van Blaricom
Finally I got out my oils and decided to do a color sketch. My sky didn't show the drama I saw but I did enjoy getting my brush in the oils and producing all the color in the sky.

The sketching in pen, marker and oils can usually let me know if I want to continue with a series or not.

How do you pick a series to work on? Do you keep working on one scene until you feel you got it right and then move on?  Or ... do you even work in a series?