Monday, August 29, 2011

More Lake Superior Rocks in Pen and Ink

Drawing these rocks at the cabin is addictive. Here are six more.
As I said in my last blog, the rocks on the beach at our cabin are lumpy and full of cracks and holes. But if you are looking for interesting shapes to draw this is the place to be.
When you tackle a subject like this it is easiest to do it when the light is intense and when the sun is not at its zenith. What you want are some clearly defined shadows. These were done between about 4:00 and 5:00 on a late July afternoon. Cloudy days when the light is flat will make these rocks more difficult to draw, too. Again, simplify.
The lake is shown in watercolor washes of blue. The bold one in the upper left corner is French Ultramarine blue from my old Windsor Newton traveling watercolor box. That box is too heavy to carry around compared to my smaller Schmincke boxes and I had not had it out to use for ages. Now that I have discovered it again I'm going to take the French Ultramarine pan out and stick it in the smaller box trading it for the Schmincke Ultramarine (UB) pan. I was surprised to see the difference in intensity between the colors. Other washes are cerulean and mixtures of UB and cerulean. The paper is Fabriano 90# cold press in another Roz Stendahl journal.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Lake Superior Rocks in Pen and Ink

The geology of the north shore of Lake Superior has a variety of rock formations. As my wide-eyed four-year-old grandson said, "These rocks on our beach were once red hot lava!"

I always thought it was more fun to draw the rocks were the lava had cooled more slowly into "squarish" shapes. My sketchbooks are full of these more linear formations. If you are just starting to draw rocks, these simple shapes are the ones to start on. Our beach cooled more quickly so the basalt did not have the time to form into large crystal shapes. Instead it is lumpy and irregular and full of holes and cracks. Not as graphic looking but very interesting. the trick is to simplify.

Here are a few pen and ink drawings of our lumpy beach. The lake is indicated by watercolor washes in a variety of blues.

Monday, August 15, 2011

"Places Between, Spaces Within": New Art from Project Art for Nature

Left: Filtered Sunlight, Pastel, 10 x 8 inches, copyright 2011 Diane Wesman. Click on images to view enlargement.

For the past several years I have been a member of Project Art for Nature (PAN). I’m pleased to invite you to my latest show. Starting this Friday, August 19 Project Art for Nature’s Places Between, Spaces Within opens at the Phipps Center for the Arts in Hudson, Wisconsin. New work by twenty-six Minnesota and Wisconsin artists will be on display. Most works will be available for purchase. (See second link for participating artists.)

PAN artists create and share artwork to encourage protection, restoration, re-connection and stewardship of natural communities of native plants and animals.

The show runs form August 19 to September 25, 2011 with an opening reception from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., August 25. There will also be a round table discussion with artists on September 25, 2 to 4 p.m.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Hazy Sunshine on Lake Superior

Hazy Sunshine 5.75" x 7.5" Oil

Here is another look out onto the great inland sea that is Lake Superior. It was a cloudless afternoon at the cabin. The sky was faintly hazy and yet the lake sparkled like diamonds. A brilliant contrast to the purplish-brown rock. The small spruce tree hangs tight to this rocky, lichen covered outcropping above Lake Superior. It is battered by the elements but its roots go deep into the cracks in the basalt.

This painting is done on book board primed with three coats of vermilion colored clear acrylic gesso. It give me a nice toothy surface, a little rougher than regular gesso. I started using clear acrylic gesso as a ground for my pastel paintings and find it is also nice for oil.

I will be showing this painting along with several others at the Phipps Center for the Arts in Hudson, Wisconsin. The show will run August 19 to September 26. The opening reception is Friday evening, August 26 from 6:30 to 8:30. More details about the show next week.