Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Farmer's Market Flowers, Hawaii Style

I've been away from my blog for too long. Here's my latest painting in progress:
It's a big one, 38x56". When it's finished, it's going to it's new home in Boston, MA. I promised myself I wouldn't paint any more large paintings unless they had a home, and fortunately, this one is a commission. I've begun the underpainting of the shadow shapes with winsor violet, pthalo turquoise, indigo, and napthamide maroon.
Here's a close-up of the right corner. I've started putting in some of the foliage with prussian blue, sap green, and yellowish green. The big yellow area is quinacridone gold. I've also masked some areas where I want to preserve highlights.

Here's the whole painting so far. I have most of the underpainting in place, but couldn't resist starting some of the local color. I can only deal with delayed gratification for so long!
I've painted the reds with an underpainting of quinacridone gold. This painting is so big that my normal method of tipping the paper to move the paint on the paper is a challenge. I've been working with a plastic garbage bag covered by a hand towel sitting on top of the painting with all my palettes, brushes & water bucket sitting on top of it. Every time I need to tip the paper, I've got to move all the stuff off the painting (carefully!) and then put it all back when I'm ready to paint again. 
This is it for today. I'll post more tomorrow!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


This is the first step of my painting. I use cobalt blue and winsor violet as an underpainting for all of the shadow shapes in the petals. I tend to use the violet in the center of the flowers where there will eventually be a yellow color. The violet makes a beautiful shadow under yellow, avoiding the brown you can sometimes get when trying to create yellow shadows.

This is a close-up of the painting. After all of my shadow shapes are in place, I added some of my "triad grey" (aureolin, perm. rose, cobalt blue) to some of the shadows to give them a little more depth. I wet one petal at a time with clear water before I begin painting. From there, I begin overpainting the petals with perm. rose, quin. magenta, quin. gold, new gamboge, and winsor orange (red shade). Tipping the paper helps smooth the transitions between colors, and the water I painted on the petals "floats" the paint, allowing more movement.

I've finished the petals, and underpaint the buds and stems with winsor violet. I've used indigo to underpaint veins in the leaves, then overpainted with sap green.
The stems and buds are painted with pereylene violet and permanent rose. The winsor violet underpainting shows through, creating depth. My final step is to glaze over some of the lower stems with the triad grey to push them into the background. When you first apply this glaze, it looks pretty bad-- just give it time. As the grey dries it disappears, creating a subtle shadow.
I titled this painting "Arrival" 36" x 15". It was my first painting done while living here in Maui.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

News from Maui!

My husband and I are spending the next six months in Maui. I'm planning on doing a LOT of painting, and have just joined Maui Hands, a wonderful art gallery. This is the view from my studio.

In February 2011, I will be participating in a brand new annual art event on Maui, called the Maui Open Studios. It is an exciting island-wide event of self-guided tours of artists studios and exhibitions taking place the first 3 weekends of February every year. I am one of over 100 artists who are participating in the inaugural event in 2011. The event includes a festive Opening Celebration and Preview Exhibition on Friday, February 4 at the Maui Tropical Plantation. There will be live music and a cash bar and artwork to preview from the participating artists. The Opening Celebration is followed by 3 weekends of artist open studios including mine. The event is entirely free for the public.

My event /show will be during Weekend #2 (Feb. 12-13) from 10am - 6pm on both days. Please check out my artist profile, samples of my work and my show details on the Maui Open Studios website at http://www.MauiOpenStudios.com Click on my name in the alphabetical listings in Weekend #2 to view my information.

I would appreciate it if you could share this information about my show with your friends and art lovers and I hope to see you then!

Aloha, Kathleen

Saturday, October 30, 2010

North American Watercolor Artists- NAWA


Mark Mehaffey, Nicholas Simmons, Keiko Tanabe, Carol Carter, Thomas W. Schaller, and Kathleen Alexander have formed the North American Watercolor Artists, a group of six U.S. watercolor artists, to represent the United States in the IX International Watercolor Biennial in Mexico. The exhibition will be held at the National Museum of Watercolor in Mexico City, December 5, 2010 through February 13, 2011. Artists representing countries in five continents are participating in the Biennial, which is invitation-only. Begun in 1994, the purpose of the Biennial is to establish or enhance friendly relationships among watercolor artists and promote watercolor painting around the world.

I'm so honored to be included in this outstanding group of artists, and to be representing the United States. I've included the websites of all the members of the group, so please visit. Each artist has a unique style that represents a different facet of watercolor painting.

Web addresses:

Mark Mehaffey www.mehaffeygallery.com

Nicholas Simmons www.nicholassimmons.com

Keiko Tanabe http://ktanabefineart.com

Carol Carter www.carol-carter.com

Thomas W. Schaller www.twschaller.com

Kathleen Alexander www.kathleenalexanderwatercolors.com

The painting I sent to the exhibition is titled "Gratitude" 21x29".

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Palo Alto Festival of the Arts

I'll have a booth at the Palo Alto Festival of the Arts this weekend, August 28-29 on University Avenue in Palo Alto. It's a great festival (& the food is surprisingly good for a street fair!). We just moved, and life seems to be getting back to normal. I've been painting some new wine grapes and am trying to finish them for the Kings Mountain Art Fair, Labor Day weekend.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

La Jolla Festival of the Arts

I got late notice that I was accepted into the La Jolla Festival of the Arts. La Jolla is in the San Diego area, so this will be the farthest I've travelled for an art festival. I'm so excited! The festival is June 26-27, and is held on the UC San Diego Campus East. Here's their web address: www.lajollaartfestival.org. If you're in the area, please come by and say hi!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

March Workshop: Painting Flowers

Fabulous hibiscus paintings by the March workshop group!