Post-Spokane Update! - Thankful for the Rain

After an exciting show in Spokane, a new collector of mine sent an image of my "Mountain Goat Peril" hanging above a fireplace in his cabin! It is so cool to see my artwork going out into the world. While speaking with Tim, the collector, he said, "I like to sip scotch in front of the paintings and fireplace on rainy days like today." I had no idea I'd be thankful for rain at an art show!

Click on an image to enlarge it.

My custom "floating" frames allow the sides of the 1.5" deep canvas to be seen, showcasing the entire painting while framed.

Artfest Spokane

I had a great time at Artfest! It's an exciting thing to see my paintings go to people I know will cherish them! This was my first outdoor festival art show. I am extremely pleased with the layout of paintings I had. As I mentioned in my previous post, you can see on the protruding central panel my small original paintings which "float" on frames that I designed. I've included a close-up shot of this framing style for you to see the unique benefits of how they showcase the entire painting for the viewer. These weathered wooden frames are stained gray making them a stylish and perfect fit for any space they hang! I'll be sharing more of these pieces soon as well as a photo of my "Mountain Goat Peril" painting which now hangs above a fire place in an art collector's cabin!

Ellensburg National Fine Art Show

 
 

I kicked off my first festival art show, and wow, what an experience! Many artists were excited to see a new face and connect with me. I especially enjoyed getting to know Tobias Sauer. If you love western animals and landscapes, you won't want to miss him! I also connected with the famous Don Crook and ended up coming home with one of his prints! One of the most insightful things I took away from Ellensburg was Tobias's advice to get every original painting, no matter how small, up on the wall. I must say, my sales took a huge jump from taking this advice and creating a new frame design for my small originals. I'll share them with you in my next post! Stay tuned! 

-Ben

Color Uniformity

 
 
 

     I want the color scheme in the Monroe Street Bridge painting to look old, and in order to achieve this I am utilizing a paint mixing trick to quickly achieve color uniformity. The technique is easy, fast, and it works. Because I am aiming for a vintage look, I am not using highly saturated colors. Instead, I am using variations of grayed- down color.

     The mixing trick to fast color uniformity is to simplify how the variations of color are mixed. I used to mix a different gray for every color that would go into a painting, but I now simplify this by only mixing one base gray which gets added to every other color I am using. Uniformity is achieved because the base gray is a constant throughout the painting.

     The three colors I mixed for my base gray in this painting are: Burnt Umber, Prussian Blue, and Permanent Alizarin Crimson. The first two colors make a deep green, so when the Permanent Alizarin Crimson is added the complimentary colors cancel each other out, leaving a deep gray; perfect for using as my base to mix with the other colors.

 
 

     You can make your base gray using different colors than the three I have chosen. The reason I am using these pigments is because they are dark. I can use my base gray by itself for the deepest shadows in the painting. Keep in mind that the more gray you add to your painting the more you will need to focus on value (light to dark). This trick is applicable for achieving color uniformity whether you want a vintage look in your painting or a vibrant one. For the latter, begin with a more saturated base color.

     I hope my trick for color uniformity has given you something to experiment with on your canvas. I would love to receive your feedback on this! I’m looking forward to sharing more ideas with you in future posts!

 

Monroe Street Bridge

 
 
 

      I am creating a painting of the Monroe Street Bridge located in Spokane, WA. This piece has been commissioned by a family that is remodeling a 110 year old home. I am excited to have my art in a home that will be on the historic register. Due to the age of the Monroe Bridge, completed in 1911, and the age of the home it will be hung in, my color scheme will have a vintage look. Learn about the color uniformity of this painting in my next post.

More history on the Monroe Street Bridge: http://spokanehistorical.org/items/show/507