Friday, December 26, 2014

2014 Christmas Card

The message on the back of our card to all our friends, indeed to everyone, everywhere - is...

"Wishing for

peace on earth

and good will

to all mankind."

Monday, December 22, 2014

Christmas Takes Over...

And I’m behind on my artwork.

I haven’t had time to paint, darn it. Instead, I’ve made 16 dozen Christmas cookies, we’ve decorated the house, in and out and shopped until we dropped. I’ve promised myself that I will paint this afternoon and tomorrow. Meanwhile, I looked through past artwork and I’m posting this pastel from the series of sunrise paintings of south Florida sky and water.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Madonna Sketched and Mapped

I’ve finished drawing Madonna into the 3 by 4 foot canvas. I realize these pencil lines are deceptive, and that this bit of draftsmanship doesn’t look much like Madonna. However it is the most difficult part of the process. The actual painting has its daily problems, but I enjoy it so much more than the meticulous mapping from the small manqué to the large canvas. The problem with mapping is that it must be perfect or the likeness is lost. That means that this, the hardest part of the process is also the most important.

Tomorrow, the much more involved and time consuming part of the project commences. I will mix a palette of about 8 colors plus white and then start to paint.*

*By mixing these 8 colors with white and one another a palette of many more colors will be obtained.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Madonna For Triptych

I’m not sure which of these 2 images I will use in the Triptych for “Windows on Queen,” Characters Pub in Lancaster, PA. Perhaps readers can help me decide. Please go to “Comments,” at the bottom of this post and post your decision, #1, or #2. Actually, if you are first to vote it will say, "no comments." And, thanks for the help.

Madonna #1

Madonna #2

I personally like the one that zeroes in on her eyes, nose and mouth as these are her most recognizable features. However, I know that the ¾ view is more iconic.

Please do not consider my comments in making your decision.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Henlopen State Park Elevated Walkway

It was a miraculous 73 degrees Fahrenheit yesterday and we took a walk on the new Cape Henlopen State Park elevated walkway/bike path that goes through the sand dunes and marshes. The walkway provides spectacular views, and I took many photographs. These are three of the 120 taken.

I had to remove my long sleeve shirt, and the sun felt so good on my skin that has been burned dry by the 20 degree weather of the past week. Today it is turning colder and we are preparing for a combination of cold rain, sleet, and wet snow. So, I am posting these as a reminder of that singular spectacular indian summer day.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Rehoboth Beach Bike Path Fall Foliage

We packed our bikes in car trunks and drove across Ocean Highway at the Food Lion shopping Center traffic light, then drove through the Super G parking lot, past K-mart, and finaly behind Tanger Outlets where we parked in the State Park parking lot.

It was the last warmish, overcast day before the current polar onslaught, so we had our cameras with us hoping to catch the trees before freeze and wind did the leaves in.

These are some of the photos from that 7 mile ride. It is 3 & 1/2 miles each way, from the outlet mall to Lewes and back.

As I write tonight, much of Delaware is having a hard freeze, so the next big blow will take the leaves down.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Vilma Banky and Ronald Coleman

Another over-sized drawing from my "Personal Icons" series of Photo Realistic powdered graphite and pencil drawings.

The drawing was made in 1978 before I began to use powdered graphite more than the pencil point. I’m not sure which film the still photo was from, though it must be either The Winning of Barbara Worth or The Night of Love. Both of those films stared Ronald Coleman in the male lead. Since most of those publicity photos were made from frames of the motion picture, I’m fairly sure the image is in the public domain. I bought the photo in a New York City “filmography” store in 1977. I know most people alive today have no idea who these two stars of the silent screen were. Banky was born in 1901 and died in 1991 at the age of 90. Coleman lived to his 67th year in 1958. You can follow the links in this entry to learn more about them.

The drawing is 32” x 40,” and is on 100% cotton fiber paper. It was completed using Jet Black pencil, and graphite powder ground from that pencil, 4B pencil, cloth and erasers. The paper and photo would have been squared-off with a grid in order to transpose the much smaller photo onto the large paper. I also used an opaque projector to help obtain a sense of “depth of field” from the original photograph. As it is one of the earlier "personal icons" the technique is a bit more crude than the later drawings. I have no idea why the photograph taken of the Photo Realistic drawing is warm in some areas and cool in others because the original drawing is not. Never the less, I know this image conveys the "old time" sense of the original frame from the motion picture as well as the timely extreme dramatic feeling the silent film era relied on to convey drama before the invention of "Talkies" in the United States motion picture industry.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Buster Crabbe as Flash Gordon

An Early Graphite Drawing of the "Personal Icon" series, “Flash” directly references my childhood

Ming, the Merciless has captured Dale Arden and Flash Gordon. “Flash” has been or is about to be tortured. As a ten year old - hopeless science fiction addict and gay boy (though if you had asked, I would not have been able to tell you why I was titillated) - I watched every episode with bated breath, hoping to see Buster Crabbe stripped to his somewhat revealing shorts. However, this 32” x 40” graphite drawing was made in 1978 at age 33 as part of the series of personal icons I created during the decade 1975 to 1985.* As one of the earlier drawings the technique is less skilled than the later works. In 1978 I was using the jet black pencil point directly on the paper whereas beginning in 1980 the blacks and most grays were laid in using powdered graphite and cloth, rubbed into place, and subtracted from to expose lighter grays and white where necessary. So, this drawing has a more heavy-handed appearance than the later artworks. However, this less defined, and to me somewhat awkward work is in keeping with the quality of the original photograph. Like the drawing the photo was also a bit fuzzy and looked as though it might have been made from an actual frame of the original, already fading film, which was of extreme contrast.*2 At the time I was striving for a Photo Realistic quality though I don't think it was quite realized in this particular drawing.

A Bit of Meta Criticism

I've had friends tell me that I am too self-deprecating when critiquing my own work. However, the artist always knows his/her own flaws better than any viewer, and that includes all art critics who sometimes dis an artwork thinking they understand its flaws.

Two Notes

*In 1978 Buster Crabbe was seventy years old, my current age, and in five years my icon would be dead.

*2 The film series has since been cleaned digitally and is preserved in the Library of Congress, National Film Registry as a "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" film series. And, I bet I am just one of many gay men of my generation who grew up with Buster Crabbe as one of their heroes and/or icons.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Meryl Streep Portrait: Part VIII

The Finish

The acrylic painting of Meryl Streep is complete but not installed. Due to miscommunication she is languishing against the north wall, and looking out the huge “Windows On Queen,” in Characters Pub in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. However, it is my understanding that she will be installed when Joe and I next visit Lancaster. We will celebrate with another fabulous dinner at Chef and owner, Meghan Young’s restaurant. Of course Dr. more-and-more-dyslexic-gasbag put the panels together backwards and the entire thing had to be taken apart and put together again. Ah well, the joys of old age! At least I can still draw, paint, laugh at myself, and take nourishment, occasionally all at once. Never the less I’m pleased with the final result, and I actually like the Meryl Streep portrait better than last year’s Leonardo Dicaprio portrait. She is bolder both in color and composition. Also, the abstraction of the hair worked out especially well. I debated changing the color of the background, but I am happy that I decided to stay with the black, which is not black. Instead it was made from red, green, magenta and blue, and depending on the number of layers it appears to be navy blue and or black in spots as one approaches the painting closely.

What's Next?

I’ve already begun to think about the new painting to go on the wall across from the bar in Windows On Queen. Instead of another 5 by 7 & ½ foot painting I will do a triptych, three 3 x 4 foot panels attached, hung as one 4 by 9 foot horizontal unit. However, each panel will be of a different character. I will have to consult with Meghan as to which characters are to be used. Perhaps three characters from the world of pop music this time. We’ll see.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Meryl Streep Portrait: Part VII

Okay, I finally finished the sixth and last panel of the 5 & ½ x 7 foot painting yesterday. This is the finished panel (taken with my cell phone).

The day before yesterday I had bought a new drill to make the holes in the frames in order to fasten the entire thing together once we are at Characters. I drilled one hole in the back of the first two panels and the drill quit! A-a-a-a-a-a-r-r-r-r-r-r-g!

This photo shows the back of the two panels with the drill bit stuck in the frames. I took the drill back to the store and replaced it with another of different manufacture and charged it over night. I’ve tested it and it works this morning. So, we will see if I am able to get through 17 more holes. I will do the drilling as soon as I post this. I think Murphy’s Law should be enshrined as an actual scientific reality!*

*Murphy’s Law – “If anything can possibly go wrong, it will!”

Friday, October 10, 2014

Meryl Streep Portrait: Part VI

Panels column b/row 2 and column a/row 3 are done!

Panel Row 3, column a

Panel Row 2, column b

I have one panel to go. As the artist, I have to admit the work is getting better as I progress. The risk-taking quotient has gone up as I continue the work. I’m more and more willing to break free of the pencil mapping I do in order to make sure each panel conforms to the others.*1 The mapping is a must for two reasons; 1) to make sure all the pieces of color line up from one section to another, and 2) Meryl won't look like Meryl if the drawing isn't absolutely correct. However, I am able to take creative risks with blending wet paint passages with several colors mixed to create skin textures that I was not willing to take in the first three panels. I am enjoying the conflict that process creates between the flat areas of color and the more nuanced textured sections of thick paint. In other words the battle between thin and fat paint works in this 5 by 7 & 1/2 foot portrait painting. *2

I probably won’t have time to go back through the panels and make corrections because I have but four workdays left to complete the final panel. The panel is only mapped about three quarters. So, I won’t begin to paint until tomorrow. And, the work will be interrupted by travel to Philadelphia for doctor appointments for my husband’s eyes. I will post photographs of the completed painting when it is finished and installed in the banquet facility at Characters Pub in downtown Lancaster, Pennsylvania in two weeks.


*1 mapping - in drawing the term is used to denote the exact draftsmanship necessary to create a perfect likeness. Mapping is often done with the squaring technique (modern jargon - the grid) invented by the ancient Greeks for transferring a small drawing to a large wall as in a mural.

*2 flat (thin) versus fat – I am working in acrylics here, however, fat and thin are terms used to refer to heavy thick oil paint and thinner flat oil paint – fat because of all the oil in the thick paint, flat because of turpentine or other thinner added to the paint to flatten it out. Working in acrylics with fat and thin means using no water versus more water to thin the paint, and moving very fast with heavy gooey paint application so that colors will mix together with brushwork on the canvas before they harden.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Meryl Streep Portrait: Part V

Panel Row #2, Column #2 finished

Once again, this panel took longer than expected. There are two weeks left to finish two more panels, and so far it has taken a week and one half to finish each of the first four panels. Why do I do this to myself in retirement? The alter ego tells me it is necessary to keep an edge on, and old age at bay, at least for the time being.  However, I think that is wishful thinking.

The paint I pre mixed has gotten too thin over time, so it was necessary to double coat everything rather than struggle to mix new colors to match. There are now 18 pre mixed colors, and 6 new colors mixed on the palette where needed in this panel. There were also several colors mixed on palette that were used in previous panels. Fortunately I am still able to mix to match almost exactly based on sight alone. One of these colors was a lighter version of the pre mixed tan. I had to mix it again in order to give the nose more dimension. On the computer manqué the nose looks too flat. In these large panels it does not.*

I will have to touch up several spots where the paint is still too thin, but over all I am extremely pleased with these panels. They match precisely around the edges so that when assembled the five and one half by seven foot painting will be almost seamless. As stated before, it is necessary to work on these thirty by thirty inch panels because the painting must be transported in our car, and because the studio is too small to allow for larger canvases. Someday, I’d like to convert the garage into a second studio so there is space for larger paintings. However, the advantage of this procedure is that the panels can also be hung separately, individually, or in groups of two. Though there are only four of the six panels finished - and two of these panels are propped up on the wall - one can easily recognize Meryl Streep in them.

So, Tomorrow I move on to the bottom two panels and Meryl's mouth. There will be at least 10 new colors, various reds to be mixed.


* manqué - here I am referring to the “inferior” computer generated image I made to use as a guide in making the painting. It is of necessity inferior to the final painted version as it is so small compared to the 5 x 7 & 1/2 foot painting, and the color is flat and vastly inferior to the painterly quality of the fished artwork.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Meryl Streep Portrait: Part IV

Panel Row 2, Column a

It is finally done, the third of six panels!  It took longer than I had hoped, but I’m pleased with it. There are four small areas that bother me a little. However, I’m willing to bet these are just another case of the artist knows something the viewer doesn’t. I must move on because I have but three weeks to finish three more panels. If there is time to adjust when all is done. I will do so. Otherwise, “If it were done, when 'tis done, then 'twer well it were done quickly.”

“Lead on, Macbeth,” says the alter ego.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Meryl Streep Portrait: Part III

Panel 1b is completed and here I compare the small computer generated manqué to the two painted (30" x 30") square panels.*

computer manqué

I wasn’t interested in matching the color in the painting to those I made in the small-computerized version. Instead, the colors are much more intense. And, in some cases the hue isn’t the same. At the same time all the areas of color do have to match exactly from one panel to the next, so perfect draftsmanship is a must. If there were errors in drawing, the edges of the panels would not match, and much worse, Meryl would not look like Meryl.

the 2 (30" x 30") painted panels

I am pleased with the boldness/power of these two panels. There is only one small area that could use some tweaking in the left panel, and that is the three brown lines to the right of center. They appear to be divorced from the surrounding paint. If I have time when all six panels are finished I’ll go back and play with that passage a bit. However, the deadline looms but one month away, and this little thing is probably one of those that only the artist knows about. There won’t be any viewer saying – “Darn, look at those three ugly brown lines in Meryl Streep’s hair!”

I’ve started panel 2a, and hope to finish it this week. We shall see as we have guests coming this weekend, which means I must be done by Friday.

My alter ego says, “good luck with that one, John! You’d better not do anything but paint!”


* manqué - here I am referring to the “inferior” computer generated image I made to use as a guide in making the painting. It is of necessity inferior to the final painted version as it is so small compared to the 5 x 7 & 1/2 foot painting, and the color is flat and vastly inferior to the painterly quality of the fished artwork.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Atlantic Ocean Sky at Sunset

August 23, 2014

In south Florida and in Mexico I’ve seen amazing cloud formations over the water at any time of the day or night or year, but never before over the ocean in Delaware. Now, I'm not saying such formations don't happen in Delaware, just that I've never seen one, and I long ago concluded that they must be extremely rare. So, I was amazed when visiting Cape Henlopen with friends one evening this past August.

I had only my old iPhone 4S, and forgot to set it on high definition when I was shooting. Still these sky photos are amazing!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Meryl Streep: Row 1, Column A

Finally, the first of six panels is done, all but the final fixes, and I will wait until I have more panels finished to do the final corrections. This panel is the upper left hand corner of the five-by-seven-and- one-half foot portrait, and is 30 inches square  The painting's color is more intense than the color in the computer version (2" by 2") that I made over a month ago. However, I like the more intense painted version best because the sections of paint contrast, that is retreat and come forward better than in the small computer version.

I took this photo of the panel in the studio with my iPhone, and much of the painterly quality is missing. For the good photographs of the image, I will carry the panel outdoors, and shoot in full midday sunlight with my Sony 10 megapixel camera in order to capture the color at its best. I know the thickness of the paint will show up better if I shoot that way as well.

I had hoped to have the panel done way back in mid August, but volunteer work, doctor’s appointments and other personal issues interfered. Now that the first panel is finished, I hope I will be able to pick up the pace with little or no future encumbrance.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Surreal Mexico Tree

As a documentary iPhone picture of our trip - taken from a moving van on our way home from the Occidental Grand Xcaret Hotel near Tulum in Mexico – this image is a photographic disaster And, our trip wasn’t that wonderful either. Suffice it to say that these days Mexico has gotten really good at squeezing and shaking every spare penny from the weary tourist taking a break from the Gringo rat race to the north.*

Never the less, the tree with its roots was suspended in a hole through an overpass that we had passed beneath a half dozen times in our tiny rented Ford "cucaracha" going to and from the hotel. This was the first time I was not in the driver's seat, and I pushed the shutter icon several times as the crowded hotel van approached the amazing apparition. The image displayed here is the best, and I do like the reflections in the glass despite the dark finger blob over the lens, and the blurry out of focus window surround. The various bent glass distortions in the image also add interest, and since the tree itself is an absurdity all the obfuscations add to the mystery of the impossible thing happening before the eyes. As I look at the photograph taken in a Spanish speaking country I think of Magical Realism in Spanish Literature, and of course the Surrealist thread woven through so many of the arts during the past century.* Rene Magritte's painting, The Castle of the Pyrenees comes to mind.

Accordingly I view the iPhone photo of the floating tree as successful artistic expression.*1


* Magical Realism – The imposition of impossible magical elements given in a matter of fact way into a realistic narrative about the real/natural world. Magical Realism includes Gabriel Garcia Marquez’ seminal One Hundred Years of Solitude, and Isabel Allende’s The House of the Spirits among many others.

*1 Magritte, Rene, "The Castle of the Pyrenees," (1959) oil on canvas. See Wiki Images, copyright information below viewed 11:01 PM. EDT, Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Fair use rationale: it is a historically significant artwork the image is only being used for informational and educational purposes the image is readily available on the internet the image is a low resolution copy of the original artwork and is unsuitable for commercial use More… allows unlimited copying, distributing and displaying of the images of public domain artworks solely. We use here Copyright term based on authors' deaths according to U.S. Copyright Law, that is 70 years. In other countries, the duration of copyright term may differ. Please check here copyright length according to your country's legislation before you consider reproducing images borrowed from Artworks protected by copyright are supposed to be used only for contemplation. Images of that type of artworks are prohibited for copying, printing, or any kind of reproducing and communicating to public since these activities may be considered copyright infringement.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Fungus Amongus

No, it is not a creature from another planet; at least I don’t think so. Neither is it a bizarre little poisonous snake from The River Styx.

Instead these weird things will grow around the base of our Crepe Myrtle end of this month, beginning of September. I took these photos of the creepy things last year, and I really would like to know what they are. I’ve never seen them before in my life.

I doctored the photographs with Adobe Photoshop, made 2 layers, darkened the exposure in one, and then erased over the fungus thing exposing the lighter version on the bottom layer. Finally I painted where necessary in the background, and merged the layers. The original images are much larger than these I’m displaying, and could be printed up to 6 feet square and still look detailed at that dark head like part, I think. At that point the yellow-orange and black fungus would definitely look like an invader from planet Xarcon.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

New Character’s Restaurant Portrait

Meryl Streep

After much deliberation over a new character for the banquet room at Goddaughter Meghan’s restaurant, Character’s Gastropub in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, we decided on Meryl Streep to reside opposite Leonardo DiCaprio.  I documented the image deliberation in May of this year. More recently Meghan was concerned that the great actress must appear as her younger, more glamorous self so as to fit with the majority of the restaurant's clientele. However, one of Meghan's favorite choices was this still image from The Devil Wears Prada, 2006, only 8 years ago.*

I posit that this elegant and glamorous image of (at the time) a 56 year old woman demonstrates that age can be worn extremely well and that Ms. Streep does so. The photo also goes a long way to demonstrate that Meryl Streep is capable of becoming any character she wishes, witness her performances in such diverse motion pictures as Out of Africa, The Iron Lady, Julie and Julia

and Mamma Mia!.

In any event, I cannot just copy the photograph and call it my own, no matter how large I make the image. The finished painting will be extremely large, 5 x 7 & ½ feet. Never the less, I must make other drastic changes to the image using Adobe Photoshop as the instrument for change. Just as in the Leonardo DiCaprio painting I made last summer, I have begun by cropping the photograph in various ways, and choosing one. I have reversed the image, and played with the colors. The image shown below is the final flipped, cropped and posterized image, with colors I have chosen from many trial runs.

I am mixing the colors for the panels now, and will begin painting tomorrow. The application of the paint with Impressionist like brushwork will be one more change to the image, thus removing it 6 times from the original photograph, more than enough changes to make the finished painting my own creation.

Notes and Credits

* “The Devil Wears Prada, by Omar P. L. Moore in Pop Corn Reel ( Posted June 29, 2006, viewed 11:30 PM, EDT, Friday, August 1, 2014.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Mixed Media Distressed Painting Commission Step 4

In order to help unify the panels, I must work still another layer of distressed paint of various colors here and there. I will also add another smaller image to the telescoped distressed image in the center of each panel, and perhaps a line or 3 across them. At any rate, I am one week away from being finished. I will post an image of the finished product hopefully before the ind of the month.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Butterfly World Photo

I save thousands of digital photos in my “morgue” for possible future use in artwork.* These photographs can be of anything from zebras to alfalfa. This photo was taken in Butterfly World several years ago. If you visit Fort Lauderdale, Florida, I would recommend a visit to this, one of the worlds largest butterfly conservatories. You will be provided with a fabulous photographic opportunity, and a wonderful aesthetic experience.

* morgue – an artist’s alphabetical file of photographs to be used as aids to drawing, painting, or illustration. If the works are the artist’s own photographs, they may be used individually as artworks, and or incorporated into mixed media artworks in their entirety.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Mixed Media Distressed Painting Commission in Process Continued

Step 3

Because each step in this process changes the paintings drastically I've purposefully arranged the panels in a different sequence from my last blog entry. Can you match panels across step 2 and step 3?

Step 3 looks very different from Step 2, and is made up of 7 critical stages without which the entire process would fail. First, new images were laminated over the varnished layers beneath, 2) next the entire surface was covered with oil crayon, 3) a new color of tempera paint was applied, and 4) after drying the surface was distressed so that parts of all the layers beneath would show through, 5) several coats of pastel fixative were sprayed on the surface at 5 minute intervals, 6) The entire surface was coated with a satin UV protective polymer varnish and finally, 7) new digital photographs were taken of the panels at this stage of production.

In the next and final step, I will use Adobe Photoshop to place opaque and transparent digital images of the painted and distressed panels as they were at the end of step 3 onto a final layer of photographs. These will be carefully torn and laminated onto the surface so that the image of the painted surface will match perfectly with the actual painting creating the impression that painted surface and torn paper photographic images are one and the same, an ironic and redundant toying with reality.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Mixed Media Distressed Painting Commission in Process

Step #2

As promised, I am tracking the progress on the commission for friends’ master bedroom. Step #2 actually includes 7 different processes; 1) varnishing, 2) tearing photos, 3) laminating photos onto the paintings, 4) varnishing again, 5) waxing, 6) painting, and 7)distressing. I am 2 weeks ahead of this image now. However, I want the progress charted. The color of the triptych is now much lighter and brighter, and there is more text and many more photos buried in the paint. The darker colors are still there, but not so strongly pronounced. As I progress the paintings will become more centered with strong points of visual interest. I will post new images 2nd week of July. I hope to be finished by July 20th, and will post images of the finished paintings then.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

No More Foreign Invasions!

I made this graphic using Adobe Photoshop. Admittedly, it is an ideological political artwork. I have tried to avoid doing these the past two years. However, I can’t help but be alarmed that we are once again ready to charge off on another crusade without having thought through the consequences.

It seems we haven't learned anything from our history of foreign invasions. That history includes, Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq I (Desert Storm) & Iraq II. Only one of our invading presidents knew when to stop - the senior Bush in the first Iraq invasion. The others, including Senior's son under the mistaken strategy of "preemptive strike" caused destabilizing calamity.
I say -

“No More Foreign Invasions!"

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Punk/Goth Vehicle

So, last week we traveled north, stoping the first night in Pooler, Georgia, near Savannah International Airport. We stayed at pet friendly La Quinta Inn, and had dinner at the local Applebee’s. Unfortunately La Quinta smelled of pet dander, though the steak I had at Applebee’s was quite good. However, more interesting was this bizarre old pick-up truck parked outside the restaurant, complete with coffin and photos of the deceased - I guess the owners, or perhaps some persons the owners dislike. I consider the truck to be a rather large mobile piece of outsider art. Both Joe and I took photos with our i-phones, also (applied) artwork, and here is a small selection of my photos.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

South Florida Summer Beach

I took these photographs two years ago, set the camera to repeat and held the shutter button down. The shutter speed was 300, aperture f-11. It was early July, about 1:00 PM, so the sun was almost directly overhead. I used Adobe Photoshop to assemble the photographs into the grid. The original print was 17 x 21 inches. "South Florida Summer Beach is one of a series of grids made of waves breaking on the beach, or views of the beach itself. I have shown but 2 of 6 in shows. I enjoy following the progress of the figures walking along surfs edge through each succeeding frame in this particular grid.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Meryl Streep Painting

I’ve been looking at photographs of Meryl Streep as part of the preparation for the 7 and 1/2 foot by 5 foot painting I will do this summer for our Goddaughter’s restaurant, Characters Pub in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. I will not be copying any of these photos. Instead I will drastically alter one or more of them in order to create the actual oversized artwork for the banquet room in the back of the restaurant. The changes include removing a small portion of the original photo(s), changes in attitude/position, and/or, drastic color alterations, along with Impressionist like brushing techniques that remove the painting so far from the original photographic image as to nullify any connection. Some of the photos I’ve looked at are shown below with links to the original Website in which they are displayed.

1. Meryl Streep's Fun Tassel Earrings At The New York Film Critics Circle Awards (PHOTOS) The Huffington Post Jessica Misener First Posted: 01/10/2012 6:22 am Updated: 03/11/2012 5:12 am, Viewed 10:26 PM. EDT, Friday, May 23, 2014.

2. Interview: “Meryl Streep says being a monster in ‘August: Osage County’ was hard”. Viewed 10:33 PM, EDT, Friday, May 23, 2014.

3. “Meryl Streep in the Iron Lady” Viewed 10:29 PM.EDT, Friday, May 23, 2014.

4. The Devil Wears Prada. "Fashionistas beware: Andy vs. Goliath -- Hathaway is the "Devil"'s advocate," in Film Review: "The Devil Wears Prada," By Omar P.L. Moore, June 29, 2006. Viewed 10:37 PM. EDT, Friday, May 23, 2014.

5. Meryl Streep. Viewed 10:47 PM. EDT, Friday, May 23, 2014.

6. Meryl Streep, in Vogue Magazine, found on Google. Was unable to locate the exact spot in the Vogue Website where this photo appeared. Viewed 10:58 PM. EDT, Friday, May 23, 2014.

Back to the portrait paintings

This is only the first step of many that will take at least a month to complete before I can start on the actual painting. But the painting will be the 2nd in a series of large acrylic paintings. I completed the first of Leonardo DiCaprio last August through October, 2013. I detailed the steps involved when preparing to do the Leonardo DiCaprio painting last year in 11 blog entries. I list those entries in reverse order (reversed "blog" order) below for anyone wanting to review the process involved in making these acrylic portrait paintings of iconic motion picture characters.

1. Leonardo DiCaprio Portrait, July 22, 2013.

2. Leonardo DiCaprio Portrait: Part II, July 29, 2013

3. Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby, August 5, 2013.

4. Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby: Part III (I’m not sure what happened to Part II.) August 14, 2013.

5. Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby: Part IV. August 22, 2013.

6. Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby: Part V. August 29, 2013.

7. Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby: Part VI, September 11, 2013.

8. Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby: Part VII, September 18, 2013.

9. Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby: Part VIII, September 25, 3013.

10. Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby: Part IX, October 5, 2013.

11. Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby: Part X, October 11, 2013.