Monday, October 28, 2013

LIGHT ON A CLOUDY DAY


Painted during a steady light drizzle, in the Port Aransas Plein Air competition.  I't's interesting how the light coming through an overcast reverses the usual order of things from warm influence in the light with cool shadows, to warm shadows and cool influence in the light.  I've noticed that if I pay attention to this phenomenon, it will sometimes produce rather beautiful color relationships. When I don't the result often has an inert, depressing feeling.  If I can choose, I prefer the sunshine, but I enjoy the surprises that can come from observing the light on a cloudy day.


RAINY DAY SUNFLOWERS
©Jimmy Longacre 2013
12x16 oil on canvas panel

Jimmy Longacre
Texas impressionist landscape paintings

MY WEBSITE
MY BLOG: Paintbox & Easel

GALLERY LINKS
River's Edge Gallery Kerrville TX
Austin Street Gallery Rockport TX
Capital Fine Art Gallery Austin TX

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

HAZY DAYS

Another one of my plein air paintings from last week's Coastal Paintout in Port Aransas. This was a hazy day, with thin overcast, and I was interested in the effect of the backlit scene. Because the sun was behind the house it created a very nice foil for hi-lighting the profusion of sunflowers at the fenceline. The flowing curve of the mowed lawn also presented a useful shape emphasizing the focal area.  This kind of lighting often does very charming things to color and atmospheric perspective. 


HAZY DAY
©Jimmy Longacre 2013
12x16 oil on canvas panel

Jimmy Longacre
Texas impressionist landscape paintings

MY WEBSITE
MY BLOG: Paintbox & Easel

GALLERY LINKS
River's Edge Gallery Kerrville TX
Austin Street Gallery Rockport TX
Capital Fine Art Gallery Austin TX

Monday, October 21, 2013

PORT ARANSAS INVITATIONAL COASTAL PAINTOUT_"PEOPLE'S CHOICE AWARD"

I just returned from the annual "Port Aransas Coastal Paintout". I'm happy to say that my painting "FAREWELL TO GIBBS" won the "Peoples' Choice Award". Kind of an emotional piece for me, as 'Gibbs Cottages' is one of the last remaining relics of the old Port Aransas I knew growing up. It's destined to be razed to make room for the new. Can't look at them without remembering all the fun and crazy summers I had there in Port A, with my friends.

I'll show you some of my other paintings done, during the three day competition, over the next few days.


FAIRWELL GIBBS
©Jimmy Longacre 2013
11x14 oil on canvas panel

Jimmy Longacre
Texas impressionist landscape paintings

MY WEBSITE
MY BLOG: Paintbox & Easel

GALLERY LINKS
River's Edge Gallery Kerrville TX
Austin Street Gallery Rockport TX
Capital Fine Art Gallery Austin TX

Thursday, October 10, 2013

CROP, EDIT, ABSTRACT THE SCENE and PLAY!

HILL COUNTRY MAGIC
Almost anything can become an interesting painting…if we can see it right.  Too often, I think, we wrestle with seeing "things" rather than shapes, values and patterns.  Plein air painting can be tedious and disappointing work when we're laboring to paint what the literal, linear thinking part of our brain sees.  In that mode we tend to look for conventionally composed "scenes" in which we arrange the "things" we find.  There are a number of things I like to do to help make the shift to seeing interesting painting subjects.

Using a small viewfinder with a window that matches the proportions of my canvas or panel allows me to limit the overwhelming amount of information in the landscape and make selections whether intimate or panoramic.  Then, I can soften my vision, intentionally drifting out of hard focus, and stop mentally describing what I see as "barn", "tree", "boat", etc.  Instead, I'm looking for interesting patterns and contrasts in shapes, values and color.  When I come upon something of visual interest, I can begin to try-out cropping the view in a way that plays up the abstract qualities that have attracted my interest.

Now, I'm in a mode to think about what I can do to further enhance the subject, which is no longer the "thing" but the abstract, visual event.  I can eliminate things that clutter the subject of my arrangement.  I can re-arrange a bit to balance shapes and patterns better, to enhance the focal area, play-up contrasting values and color temperatures.  At this point the game is on, and my brain has slipped into that fun place where whatever skill I may have in drawing, and paint-handling comes into play.  Interestingly, seeing rightly causes us to improve our painting skills because they're freed from the task of depiction to be used as purposeful tools for bringing out what we find to beautiful.  Now that's fun!    

HILL COUNTRY MAGIC
©Jimmy Longacre 2013
11x14 oil on canvas panel

Jimmy Longacre
Texas impressionist landscape paintings

MY WEBSITE
MY BLOG: Paintbox & Easel

GALLERY LINKS
River's Edge Gallery Kerrville TX
Austin Street Gallery Rockport TX
Capital Fine Art Gallery Austin TX

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

WHEN THE SUN DOESN'T SHINE

OVERCAST MORNING
Outdoor painters love a sunny day displaying interesting shadow patterns that contain rich, subtle colors contrasted with the bright sunlit spectrum. But, alas, you can't always have it that way.  Gray day paintings present a unique challenge, because they lack the availability of shadow shapes that are so nice to use in organizing eye catching compositions.  Also, and perhaps a bigger deterrent to a lot of painters, they're more difficult to pull off, and even when done well they can often communicate a rather subdued or depressing psychological aspect that doesn't readily appeal to collectors. 

Still, it's a good idea to take on the challenge, I think, because the forced necessity to organize close value relationships and subtle color intensities in a pleasing way strengthens the observation skill needed to paint better under any lighting situation.  The close scrutiny and careful paint mixing necessary to painting on a gray day is a great way to hone our ability.     

This painting was done last Saturday at the Kerrville Outdoor Painters Event, on a still, thinly overcast morning that gave the landscape a kind of beautiful glow.  I probably would have passed up painting the scene, were it not for the object of having paintings to enter in the show.  You take what you can get.  I was pleased with the result, and received a lot of compliments on the painting.  "Oh, how subtle and beautiful!"  Still, it didn't attract a buyer.  Those danged gray days!  


OVERCAST MORNING
©Jimmy Longacre 2013
11x14 oil on canvas panel

Jimmy Longacre
Texas impressionist landscape paintings

MY WEBSITE
MY BLOG: Paintbox & Easel

GALLERY LINKS
River's Edge Gallery Kerrville TX
Austin Street Gallery Rockport TX
Capital Fine Art Gallery Austin TX

Monday, October 7, 2013

ARTISTS OF TEXAS has honored me with Master Signature Membership!

Thank you to the ARTISTS OF TEXAS jury for electing me to Master Signature Membership in this fine organization! I've enjoyed being a Signature Member of this generous and energetic group for the last two years. ARTISTS OF TEXAS is very involved in the promotion of artists and their art, and are leading innovators in promoting the arts online. I'm proud to be added to a distinguished group of only four other Signature Members: Tina Bohlman, David Forks, Anthony A. Gonzalez, and Rebecca Zook. I think you'll enjoy a visit to their website.

Jimmy Longacre
Texas impressionist landscape paintings

MY WEBSITE
MY BLOG: Paintbox & Easel

GALLERY LINKS
River's Edge Gallery Kerrville TX
Austin Street Gallery Rockport TX
Capital Fine Art Gallery Austin TX

PLEIN AIR PAINTING COMPETITIONS_Growth and Frustrations

I just returned from The Kerrville Outdoor Painters Event, a four day plein air painting competition.  This was one of my entries in the show.  I didn't receive the Best In Show award this time, but I'm pleased that my painting was selected as one of the winners in the show.  However, for those of you who participate in these events, or if you're thinking of participating in one, I'd like to offer my opinion about the experience.

Winning, or placing in the competition is nice and gratifying, of course, but I don't think it's the primary objective, or benefit.  There is so much to gain from accepting the challenge to do your best in the company of other painters of varying skill levels, and under whatever conditions happen to prevail during the event.  Why?  Because, it can't help but test your skills, raise your confidence level as a painter, and move you more quickly toward your next plateau.  By the way, that's what painting is about, and it never changes.

While you can't influence the preferences and prejudices of the show judge, wholehearted participation will, without a doubt, make you a better painter, and you will have a wonderful time interacting with other artists, and the public.  Bottom line: It will stretch your skill level, pay-off in the amount of satisfaction you derive from doing something you love to do, and you will have a lot of fun.  I hope you get to win an award now and then, but don't get fooled into focusing on that.  GO FOR IT!

HOME MEMORIES
©Jimmy Longacre 2013
11x14 oil on canvas panel

Jimmy Longacre
contemporary impressionist landscape oil paintings

My Website
My Blog "Paintbox and Easel"

GALLERY LINKS
River's Edge Gallery Kerrville TX
Austin Street Gallery Rockport TX
Capital Fine Art Gallery Austin TX