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Sat, Jul. 27th, 2013, 01:59 pm
Commission Sneak Peek!

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Sneak peek of a comission I’m doing for the SF chapter of The Wildlife Society. Can you guess what SF native animal (or in one case, object) is pictured?

Thu, Oct. 25th, 2012, 07:59 pm

Did you miss the bird-drawing class? Wish you could learn all the tricks the cool kids use? Wanna see a picture of me holding a pintail duck decoy? YEAH YOU DO.

Wed, Oct. 3rd, 2012, 10:02 pm

Hi friends!
Next Saturday, October 13th, I'll be teaching a bird drawing class at Lake Merritt.
It's part of an ongoing series of free events from Wild Oakland.

Stop by!

Fri, Sep. 21st, 2012, 09:44 pm
Plein Air Watercolor!

Spent the last few weekends out painting in the fall sunshine. This was a grave marker in Mountain View Cemetery. I loved the gold afternoon light and twisty oaks. Also, my paintin' buddy metamouse pointed out that my tree was too green and it needed some brown in it, to create hue noise, where colors close in value but different in hue can add some texture and depth.


This was the redwood grove in Joaquin Miller park. I was surprised how tricky the light was-- I couldn't even see which trees were casting the long shadows. My goal for this painting was to push myself to have a very wide range of light to dark and I think I succeeded in that.

More Plein Air Watercolor

Sat, Jun. 9th, 2012, 05:11 pm

Hi Friends!

I've moved my blog over to tumblr. I'm in the process of scanning and posting all my sketches from my trip to Costa Rica. Come check it out:


Mon, May. 7th, 2012, 10:59 am
More from HeronCam!


I loved the color on this photo from the HeronCam Flickr pool. So dramatic.

Mon, Apr. 30th, 2012, 04:17 pm
Watercolor Class: Heron Cam!

So our last project of the class is a longer one--a series. The assignment coincided with my latest infatuation: Heron Cam:

It's interesting because:
--birds, duh
--there's a huge range of mood, weather, and light to be explored
--the webcam distorts the already lanky herons in interesting ways

Here are a few of the paintings I have done from the webcam. Some of them came from my own screenshots and some from other people's screenshots in the Flickr pool.

Mon, Apr. 16th, 2012, 03:48 pm
Watercolor class continues.

No particular assignment this week. I'm continuing to challenge myself to paint big. I also reaaaaallllly want to get some control with wet into wet and still I'm not getting the results I want. I wanted the green foliage to be sort of indeterminately blobby and both times ended up painting over it multiple times to blur the edges.

Anyway here we have some birds of paradise I painted.

This one is from a photo on the unlikely Flickr Pool of nothing but birds of paradise, here:

And this one was from a photo on the lovely ARKive, a great source for all kinds of animal photos, here:

And just to give a sense of scale: these are so giant I can't scan them with my dinky scanner:

Wed, Mar. 21st, 2012, 08:15 pm
Watercolor class week 5: Landscape continued

We are still learning about landscapes. In class last night we painted from photos. I started with one of one of those arches in Utah but forgot to write down any more details about it.

The teacher came by and asked me what I wanted to work on next to challenge myself. I wanted to make paintings that looked all wet and blendy and bleedy and blobby and somehow mine weren't coming out blobby enough. Turns out, to make blobs, you need a brush that holds a lot of water and paint--a brush about 3x bigger than my biggest one. He loaned me a monstro-brush to try and I loved it! I would never have guessed that brush size was the secret! So then I made this:

Nice n blobby right? I'm gonna go out and buy some giant brushes!

Wed, Mar. 21st, 2012, 08:10 pm
Watercolor class week 4: trees!

This week's homework for class was to paint trees. It was raining all week so I painted from a photo by fellow artist wildbryde

In this painting you can see the atmospheric perspective (part of the assignment). Things are bluer as they recede into the distance because you're seeing them through more and more air. And air is blue. Because of all the oxygen in it. And oxygen is blue. Don't fall for that explanation about "scattering blue light," because that's not only why the sky is blue, it's why EVERYTHING that has a color is that color.

Finally on the day of class I snuck out at lunch and did a quick painting of the yacht club at Crissy Field. I edited out a lot of boats and cars and junk from the foreground:

I love Monterey Cypress, they're so iconic of the Pacific.

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