I am the first to admit when I have a problem – and I have one. I am ADDICTED to buying books about painting and art! However, I have found that I if I share what I learn about these books with you, then it makes me feel a little better about my purchases. So, I am starting a new type of blog post today, art book reviews!
I am guessing you are wondering what makes me an “expert” in art books? The truth is, nothing. I just like them and as with all reviews, the things I talk about will just be my opinion. You may feel differently but I want to just let you know that on the front end.
Now, on to the first review! I absolutely LOVE this book. If I could write a book on how to do landscape paintings, this would be it! It is well written, well organized, and full of great information. Next to John Carlson’s classic book, this is probably the best book written out there today on this subject. Mitchell is a teacher of landscape and plein air landscape painting at the Gage Academy of Art in Seattle. And he is also an awesome guy. I have corresponded with him about his book and his work and like many artists out there, he is very giving and personable.
Any of you that paint know the difficulties of painting landscapes. There are many different techniques and processes out there, but Mitchell breaks them down into three main areas, and discusses these areas in detail, providing examples both in his illustrations and with paintings from other painters out there whose work I love (Kathleen Dunphy and Tim Horn, just to name a couple). Some of the chapter titles are: Value Relationships, Simplification and Massing, Site Selection, Light and Color, and Abstracting Nature, among others. There are twelve chapters and 192 pages of wonderful information in this book. Some of it I had heard before, in one way or another, but to have it all together like this in a well organized book is invaluable to me as a painter. I don’t know about you, but I often need reminding of some of these things! I also learned some things that I had not heard before in all of my workshops and reading, which also surprised me. He has a way of explaining things that just “hits the nail on the head.” You can see more about Mitchell and this book at Mitchell’s website.
So, if you are in the market for a new art book (and who isnt???), then go now and get this one. You won’t be sorry if you are at all interested in painting our beautiful landscapes!
"Coming and Going"
9"x12" oil on linen panel
©2012 Denise Rose Fine Art
I have been working on painting boats lately in preparation for a fun painting trip I have planned to the Forgotten Coast of Florida in May. I am traveling there and will be there for 10 days to paint and observe the invited artists to the 2012 Forgotten Coast Plein Air Event. I am so looking forward to seeing some of my favorite artists paint there and meeting some that I have admired their work for a long time! It will be a great experience for me and that area offers so many great and inspiring places to paint.
Above is from a reference photo from my mentor, Lori Putnam, and I felt like "Coming and Going" describes a lot about this painting and also the way I have been traveling lately!
I painted this tower at Vanderbilt University for a very good friend for a Christmas present. She and her husband and daughter all graduated from there and anyone that knows her knows that she is one huge fan of everything Vandy! In fact, she is a current Board of Trust member and also served in the past as National Alumni President. My son is currently a Vandy undergraduate, and when we were visiting in the fall for a football game, I decided to go out scouting for a reference to paint for her. I got up early one morning and planned on getting some early morning light photos from which to choose the perfect scene for my painting. As I was drinking my coffee from the breakfast room of the hotel, I looked out the window and saw this view above. The line of early morning clouds were perfectly lined up in the sky and the light was just beautiful on the tower and the surrounding area. I quickly grabbed my camera and went to shooting through the glass window. The other breakfast eaters all looked at me strangely, but I didn't care. I knew I only had a few moments to capture that light and just kept shooting. It turned out I loved the shots and decided I didn't even need to step outside to go shoot anything else. She loves the painting and has it proudly displayed in her home with some other important Vanderbilt things. This is one of the joys I have as an artist - to be able to make other people happy with something I create!
Because I am not only an artist but an art collector, I decided to start a wall in my studio for some of the paintings I have recently acquired from different artists across the country. Most are small format, 6"x6" or a little larger, and all are from artists whose work I love a lot! I will add to it as time goes on and as money is available :). I included close ups below with the artists in case you would like to check out their work too!
helpful and supportive to me in my art journey so far!
The final photo shows a painting on the left by artist Tim Horn
, who I have had the pleasure of studying with in a workshop in Atlanta. Also pictured is the work of artist Carol Schiff
, who is masterful in her use of beautiful brushstrokes and paint application in all of her paintings!
There are MANY other artists out there whose work I would love to own, and plan on continuing to collect as I can. I feel the art not only inspires me but brings a sense of light and joy to my studio, and makes it such a wonderful place to be!
This painting was painted from a photo I took while in the Nashville area for a workshop this past summer. Like many artists, I have a "thing" for barns! It might be cliche, but I can't help myself! They just speak to me when I drive by so now I veer over (safely, usually!) and take photos if I can't whip out my paints and paint it right then and there. This one is located in the lovely little community called Leiper's Fork. If you ever get near Nashville, you have to drive around here. Cool little grocery store/restaurant that is really a Southern landmark called Puckett's Grocery to eat a great, southern lunch too!