Thursday, August 30, 2007

A Busy Day...

This certainly has been a busy day. Actually it's been a hectic week with no sign of it easing up.
We are now officially in our new studio which we call "Three Brushes". I spent today buying paint and painting the walls in the gallery space. I have to say that I like the new gray paint better than the first color.
I also took a truckload of paintings and equipment there so now it's starting to look occupied!
Another week and we should be making art there!
Break open that bottle of Raspberry wine...

Monday, August 27, 2007

A New Painting...

"Pride of Barbados"
Oil on Canvas
8" x 10"

These plants caught my eye in the parking lot across from my new studio. I just had to paint them.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

I took the day off...

Actually, I went to the new studio space this morning and took a few paintings with me. After that I came back to the house and put in an hour on a new painting before going off for a social afternoon with family.

It was difficult, once I started, to put down my brushes. I'm really liking the switch to oils from watercolors. I'm having to look at things a lot differently and adjust my thinking when planning a painting. I'm sure I will continue to do watercolors but it will be nice to have another medium to alternate with.

I'm finding that oils are opening me up to a much looser style and brighter color work. Interesting!

Here is a tiny little peek inside our new studio...

We've decided to call the space "Three Brushes Studio & Gallery".
We've painted one of the walls in the gallery area with a medium gray but it looks a little too blue. So we'll try again for a more neutral gray. It does look good with a little darker wall though. Our work should stand out very nicely. Watch for the next picture. There should be some paintings up by then.

Friday, August 24, 2007

A Big Day...

I now have the keys to our new studio!

Tomorrow we paint and by the first of September, we'll be moved in. I'm looking forward to having a good space to work in and a place to exhibit the work I have on hand.

I'll take pictures and post them soon.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

My painting for today...

Oil on Canvas
8" x 10"
(Sorry, this one is taken)

I did this painting today for an art trade. I felt really good about it and it crossed my mind that I should have kept it and traded another piece.

In the end, I decided to let this one go for the trade and I'm glad I did. It will have a place in the home of someone who will appreciate and hopefully cherish it.

If I had kept it, I would see it every day and it would hinder my progress. I am beginning to understand that about myself. I had a very wise friend tell me that the best thing that I can do to progress as a painter is to let go of each piece as it is finished so there will be room for many more. I think I am ready to test that theory.

If I progress as I hope, there will be something new to post every day. (Well, at least most days. I'm not quite THAT disciplined.)

Monday, August 20, 2007

An artist to watch...

A quick note to tell you that I just visited a great blog that you should drop in and check out...
The work is fresh and exquisite.

But, HEY, don't forget to come back to see what I'm up to!

Here is one of my watercolors...

"Live Oak, Dead Oak & Pebble"

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Another Busy Sunday...

It was a pretty good day today. A lot was accomplished and I spoke with two friends from New Mexico. That always makes a day feel special.

My friend Jo has a coffee shop/cafe called Jo's Chameleon Cafe on "South 14" outside of Albuquerque. If you know the area at all you know that isn't the right name for the road but it's the name that everyone uses. Her coffee shop is a great place to visit if you are ever in the Tijeras area.

While you are there, you should check out the artwork on the walls. Jo's a pretty good artist herself but most of what you will see there is by local artists and friends of hers. There is some beautiful work there. You may even find a couple of my photo montage pieces hanging.

Well, after a long day, it's time to relax and get ready to pick up the brushes again tomorrow.
Hope you had as good a weekend as I did.

See ya later.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Late Saturday Night...

I decided to put in some work on the landscape below to try to add some life to the upper right corner. It may be time to stop working on this one or it may become too labored. I will set it aside and work on something new tomorrow. I'm not very practiced at landscapes so I feel as though I've never picked up a brush before.

Of course, every time you pick a new type of subject or medium, there is an uncomfortable period of adjustment.

I am looking forward to painting with a group of my artist friends beginning in September when the weather cools a little. We'll be painting on the banks of the Guadalupe River just to the NE of San Antonio. This will be my first "paint out" so I'm anxious to give it a try.

For now, I'll settle on starting another "from nature" painting. I'm working at painting at a quicker pace to loosen up which is a real challenge for someone who likes to get all of the details in.

Here is one of my watercolor pieces that is still available...

"Beauty in the Beast"

I am so accustomed to painting in the minute details that it is hard to pick up a large brush and stroke in a broad sweep of color! I'm working on it though so stay tuned for my progress.

What's new?

I'm so excited!

Over the past few days, things have really taken shape. Along with two of my artist friends, Kay and John Reinke, I found a new studio space. It's a quaint little space with "Charles Dickens" storefront appeal and a small courtyard to the side of it. I can't wait to fix it up and move in!

It's located in downtown New Braunfels, TX not far from the center of town. 725-B W. San Antonio Street to be exact.

We plan to do open studio shows in the front gallery and I'll post the information here when we have something scheduled.

Here is another one of my paintings that I'll be hanging up there...

Acrylic on Cradled Wood Panel
Img size: 8" x 12"

I'm so excited!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Thursday and it's raining again!

We've had 10 days without rain recently and it's been too hot to paint outdoors. I've been wanting to hone my plein air skills but it's really unbearably hot and humid so I've had to resort to painting indoors.

I did the landscape in an earlier post from a photograph that I took earlier this year in New Mexico at a state park called "City of Rocks".

So! Until Fall arrives and the weather becomes more pleasant, I'll be painting indoors. This is not a bad thing, don't misunderstand me. I've been painting with a portrait group for the last 7 weeks and I've thouroughly enjoyed it. I'd like to do a lot more of those if I can find people to sit for them.

For now, though, I'll continue to paint things "from the land". I love painting things that we see every day. I picked up this branch from someone's back yard. Most of the tree was cloaked with lichens and ball moss and this branch had fallen during a stormy night. I'm sure that people are not happy to see their Live Oak trees covered with these parasitic plants but they make a wonderful painting!

I hope you enjoy this painting which was awarded first place in a show of contemporary art at the New Braunfels Art League in July.

Acrylic on Gallery Wrap Canvas
(can be hung without a frame)
30" x 20"

Painting fun portraits - alla prima

Over the last few months, I've been part of a group of artists who are practicing painting and drawing portraits at the New Braunfels Art League.

This particular portrait is hanging in an art league show titled "Texas". If you visit New Braunfels, TX , come by and see the show! It's a good one.

"Lone 'Star' Attitude"
Oil on Canvas
10" x 20"

Here is another painting from the portrait sessions.

If you are interested in purchasing any of my paintings just leave a message including your email address and I'll send you the information.

Oil on Canvas
12" x 24"
J A Baker

Let me introduce myself...

My life as an artist began as a child.

Crayons and construction paper, WOW!

Since this is my very first post on my very first blog, I'm going to keep it simple!

I plan to show my new work as I produce it as well as the work that I've done in the past. I'm currently working in oils but I also work in acrylics, watercolors and digital photo montage/collage.

This is a landscape that I've just taken off my easel...

"City of Rocks"
Oil on Canvas
16" x 20"

I hope you enjoy visiting my blog.
Be sure to bookmark it so you can visit often to see what I'm working on.