Wednesday, September 21, 2016

:: Without Plans ::

I love to plan things.  I like goal making … task lists etc.  It motivates me as a rule.

Recently we decided to take our travel trailer for a weeks get-a-way to the coast.  
Yippee, I'll take my oils and paint a bunch of small plein air paintings.  Of coarse I'm hopeing the weather will cooperate, but if not, I can paint out the window.  Maybe I''ll even take my watercolors and sketchbook just incase ...

And, the weather was beautiful.  Walking on the beach could not have been better.  Fall was in the air but the sun was giving us the impression that summer would hang on a lot longer.

And then out of the blue I hurt my shoulder.  Bursitis maybe?

The Group - Nancy Van Blaricom

Anyway I just need to stop making these plans ... its like the universe says "You are not in charge, I am in charge".

So, once again I did no plein air painting. 
This has to change ! I need to work thru these obstacles that I keep running into.

Last week before we left with the trailer I decided to work on a small study of some tangerines that I had purchased earlier in the week.  So,  just for practice, to see if I can remember to use big brushes and more paint,  I gathered my tangerines and a lovely blue and white saucer & arranged them on a tall plastic roll-around cart I have in the studio. Its a perfect height for a still life  set-up if standing at my easel.

After I had blocked everything in the light had changed to some degree and I decided to change the black to look more like a wood table top, from imagination. The black just wasn't working for me … 
  • Had I used big brushes? YES but I still was too nit-picky.
  • Did I mix enough paint so that I didn't end up scrubbing the paint into the canvas? NO
Even though I didn't remember everything I wanted to accomplish while working on this little study, 
I do think the painting session was a successful one because I will take notes and re-read my them prior to my next session.

Practice, practice, practice !
But its not a plan …...

Friday, September 09, 2016

:: Lazy Autumn Days ::

Fall is definitely in the air here in Sequim.  Leaves are turning color and the warm and sunny days have a crispness to them that only fall can have.  

Maybe its just the changing of the season, but, I find I'm less inclined to hurry on to different projects. Maybe instead lay around and read or maybe take a nap.

One project I managed to accomplish was to hang two pieces of my work in my studio.
I always have to give the act of hanging any of my work a lot of thought. 
So up until yesterday my studio walls were bare.  

Below are the two that I hung.  Both is Floater Frames.

Now I have two small 6" x 6" paintings hanging on my studio wall.  It actually looks nice to have some work on the studio walls and maybe now I'll be more inclined to frame a few paintings and hang them.

Fall is a perfect time to get out and do some plein air painting.  I had ordered a few Signet Bright brushes that arrived in the mail and now I'm packing up a few panels and my tripod and pochade box in anticipation of some autumn plein air painting.

I hope the lovely fall days gets you outside and you can enjoy it before winter arrives.
Happy painting.

Thursday, September 01, 2016

:: Value vs Cost ::

I had a lengthy post written for this week, but shortened it at the last minute. The subject is interesting to me because often people will talk about the cost of a painting as being too expensive.

I recently read an article on this subject that did a pretty good job of explaining the difference.
One thing the author used as an example was that its like spending $125 for a hair cut and color may sound expensive, but, if it makes you feel like a million bucks, it was a good value.

I love that analogy don't you?

When I sell a painting I hope that the work makes my clients feel good, makes them smile or maybe brings back some good memories of a place they had seen. I want them to feel like their investment was a good value.

"It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see". ~ Henry David Thoreau

On The Street Where I Live - oil on canvas-NVanBlaricomPen & Value Markers Sketch - NVanBlaricom
Standing at my easel in the studio and looking down the street … I grabbed a scrap of canvas and started painting … too bad about the wrinkle.  "On the Street Where I Live" © Nancy Van Blaricom
On another note, Paint the Peninsula 2016, The 4th Annual Paint the Peninsula Plein Air Competitions was held in the nearby town of Port Angeles on the August 22 thru the 28th.  My husband & I were fortunate enough to be able to attend the show on the last day of the event.  We saw some beautiful works of art by some very talented artists.  it was amazing to see so much beautiful work at one show.

Seeing all the beautiful work at this show has inspired me to make sure I find time this fall to get out and do some plein air painting.

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.