Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Outside painting

From my plein air trip a couple days ago.
Hope all you local Portland painters are getting out there too!

Saturday, June 19, 2010


June Poppies, 16x20 oils on board.

Well this is a rework of one of my earlier plein air pieces. Sometimes I go back in and just change everything! This was the piece titled "Clover Fields" from a couple weeks back. On this one I decided to go with some brighter more dramatic wildflowers for the foreground. I also redid the trees, changing the overall shapes and adding more detail.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Another plein air from last week.

Looking South, 11x14 oils on board. I like the way the small ditch leads you through the scene at this spot.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

New plein air ...... in between rainy days

Green Spring 12x16 oils on board.
May Gold 11x14 oils on board.
Peaceful Valley 12x16 oils on board.

Well more rain today, I am sick off rain. Did I mention I am sick of the rain. Anyways, we had some nice weather over the last weekend so I was outside painting. Did these three at various local places around the Banks / North Plains area west of Portland. I try and work fast outside, just getting enough of a block to bring back to the studio to finish.

My goal in the finish is to add as little as possible to get the plein air painting complete. Of course can I change or add whatever I want on them. As some big haired painter guy on PBS TV said, "it's your world, you can add as many happy trees and clouds as you want".

Anyways, I have been working on green earth tones lately, trying to them soft and natural but still rich and beautiful.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Color work in the field

From today's afternoon plein air. Working on greens in nature, these are much more warm and earthy than we think. In this piece I am trying to get the field colors as close as possible to what I was seeing. With my painting set up high on the easel, I am able to step back and compare the colors I put down on the edge of the board with the actual colors in the field. You can see the distant green grass on the right edge of my painting almost blends right in with the actual field. This gives me a nice close green which I can then use for the rest of the field. Same with the foreground grass on the right side. Give it a try some time.
Cheers, Don B

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

New figure painting, Trance

Recent small painting, 9x12 in oils on board.
From Salon L' Orient tribal dance performance in Portland.
This is a painting of performance artist Irish Collins who always looks like a work of art when she performs.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Plein Air Steps Golden Field

I found these beautiful golden fields and decided this would be my plein stop for today.
The start of this painting was same as always, laying in the basic shapes and general color tones.
This is about 20 minutes later, still working with getting the colors and layout correct.
At this point I have the foreground base a bit more saturated than the actual filed. I did this on purpose because I wanted to lay in the softer golds and white flowers on top of this brighter base, letting some of the underpainting show through.
My block in is complete and now I have put another layer of paint down over parts of the base painting. The golden fields in the foreground now have some more neutral golds and off whites placed creating more color harmony in the painting. Decided not to add the barns, my main focus was the golden fields and I'm just not a big barn type guy anyways. I will stop and do the final details back in the studio. My total time on this one outside was around one hour and thirty minutes, just enough to get the basic color notes and composition down. The studio finish will be a snap from here!