Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A Lofty View - New

This is my newest painting, 11x14 watercolor.  I came across this old barn a couple of years ago, on a county road south of Hillsboro, Texas. I was on my way to a friend's house, rounded a curve & driving into the sun, I saw it in my rearview mirror after I was already past.  One good thing about gravel county roads is the absense of traffic....and there's no danger of causing a wreck if you slam on the brakes & back up a couple hundred feet to take a photo!  The huge bird landed & perched on top just as I snapped the shot. I couldn't have planned it any better! Anyway, I uploaded the photo then forgot about it until this week when I found it while looking through my reference photos. It's a great old barn that has stood for decades.....lots of character; with or without the bird.

Friday, July 20, 2012

105 E. University - A Family's Story

105 East University - The Traugott Home
9x12 Watercolor

My work in the studio this week was a "labor of love"....a home "portrait".  This painting is of a 1920's  bungalow on a quiet street in one of Waxahachie's historic districts. My clients purchased the home as newly-weds and as the family grew in numbers, it became necessary to find a larger home. 

Two weeks ago, on the day they sold the house, they contacted me and comissioned a painting.
Intimate conversations with clients are as important as sketches and photographs. As I snapped photographs and made quick sketches from several angles,  I listened carefully as they talked about the house - and after a short while, I began to see the home through their eyes. It was evident they are excited about the move to their new home, but at the same time, there's the sadness of leaving their first home; one filled with love and laughter and children.  A photograph gives me technical information, but there's no emotional connection....it doesn't share memories. It doesn't tell "the story".

Elements in the painting - the big tree and dappled light; the flower gardens; the red door; faces in the picture window - are all connected to a family memory. Everyone - except the family - will see a  painting of a house...but the family will see and remember "the story".

Commissions like this one give me great pleasure.  I'll deliver "105 E. University" tomorrow to it's new home with the knowledge that it will continue to tell "the story" in the Traugott family for generations to come.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

New Blogger App on the go!

I just downloaded a new app for my phone that allows me to blog on the go! Now I can post new paintings while still on location....as long as I have a good "signal".
To start (and test) my first post from my phone, this is a painting recently completed in the studio..."High Plains Windbreak" -watercolor 11x14.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Friday Night at Uptown Village

Friday Night at Uptown Village
9x12 plein air watercolor
A couple of weeks ago, the Ellis County Art Association was the "featured non-profit" organization at the Uptown Village shopping center in Cedar Hill, Texas.  Every Friday night throughout the summer this upscale shopping center sponsors a music concert - the price of admission is a donation of money or supplies for the featured organization.  We were honored with a special location under a tent with a table for our information pamphlets and brochures.  

When the music concert started, another artist and I set up our easels and began a painting demonstration on the Uptown Village lawn. There we were - among more than a hundred adults and children - painting to the beat of a really good blues & jazz band! The scene was chaotic; children running & playing in a water sprinkler; the music was so loud it was impossible to carry on a conversation; adults singing along and dancing to the music. I've participated in many a plein air event with people looking on, but this was by far the most distracting painting situation I've ever been in.  It was about 7 pm so I only had about 90 minutes before the light disappeared.  I decided to keep the composition as simple as possible; an umbrella table with figures in shadow, a street lamp, a backdrop of buildings and a pedestrian couple in the sunlight.  Once I finished the drawing, the painting came together quite easily although this definitely tested my ability to focus and concentrate!

It was a fun evening which resulted in a very generous monetary donation to our association by Uptown Village.  As a token of appreciation, I gifted this painting to the Uptown Village Center's marketing director. She was surprised and delighted with the painting and promised to give it a place of "honor" in her office.  

I've mentioned this many times before, but it's worth saying again.... I really, really love what I do!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Wash Day Relics - Watercolor 11x14

Wash Day Relics - 11x14 watercolor
This brings back a lot of childhood memories....I'd help Mama & Granny with laundry every Monday.  We'd load up the DeSoto and drive 3 miles into "town" to the laundr-o-mat and do the wash in what seemed like hours and hours.  As a reward for helping, I'd go to the drug store and buy a "funny book" for a dime and slurp up a coke float for another quarter.  I'd have 15 cents left over for the "dime store".  Ah.....those were the good ol' days!

This old wringer washer was cast aside in a junk yard in Jerome, Arizona.  I took several photos and made a couple of sketches...the rest is from my childhood memories.  This is available for purchase - check out my website for more information: www.tinabohlman.com