Daily painting #100: My studio

To mark my 100th straight day of daily painting, I thought I’d show you where I do a lot of my work — my little studio, in my basement. When I paint a still life, I often use my easel light, a spotlight on the subject — and no other lights. So it’s bit dark, especially in the evening. I tried to convey that here. I was going for a sort of medieval atelier ambiance.

I’m going to take a break from daily painting now, as I have some longer-term art projects (I haven’t forgotten you, Tup!), plus the start of school in a couple weeks. But I’ll still be posting here, as I have plenty of stuff I haven’t gotten around to showing you all yet. Thanks for reading!

Geoff Watson, “My studio,” oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “My studio,” oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Daily painting #99: Water bottles

One peach got eaten and the other went bad, so no more peaches. So instead I painted some S’well water bottles. (Water has been a theme this month: several glasses of water, and now some water bottles.) I didn’t finish this, but it’s a decent start. Not sure whether I’ll continue it or start something new tomorrow.

Geoff Watson, “Water bottles (in progress),” oil on linen, 5” x 7,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Water bottles (in progress),” oil on linen, 5” x 7,” 2019.

Daily painting #98: Peach school

I love painting peaches, but I’ve always had trouble with them: they aren’t shiny, so they’re harder to model than, say, apples or grapes. True to form, I struggled with these peaches today. (I like the water glass in the background better!) I may paint more peaches tomorrow, just for the practice.

Geoff Watson, “Peaches and a glass of water (in progress),” oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Peaches and a glass of water (in progress),” oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Daily painting #94: a new view (day one)

I kept my little scene intact, but I stood up to paint it from a different — and more challenging — vantage point. Nothing is harder than painting extremely foreshortened objects! But I wanted the practice. This is an okay start, but things are kind of vaguely-defined still. I’ll work on it more tomorrow.

Geoff Watson, “Tableware (in progress),” oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Tableware (in progress),” oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Daily painting #93: Silver pitcher (cont'd)

It sure is fun painting all these shiny surfaces! I’ve finished a “first draft” of this little still life, and I like what I have here, but I might like to take it further. I’ll let it dry for a few days while I think on it. I have some fun ideas for a new still life tomorrow. (Incidentally, I llightly Photoshopped the background of this image to eliminate glare.)

Geoff Watson, “Silver pitcher (in progress),” oil on linen, 5” x 7,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Silver pitcher (in progress),” oil on linen, 5” x 7,” 2019.

Daily painting #89: The canal from Rehoboth to Lewes

I painted this exact scene two years ago, but I did not look at that painting again before stepping up to the easel and trying again. I didn’t want to be influenced by the earlier picture. One thing that changed was my canvas: I chose a wide surface this time. Another difference is that this time I painted it all in one go, in about two hours; last time I worked on the painting for three full afternoons! So the “old” one is somewhat more detailed and refined, but the “new” one has its merits too. Here’s today’s effort:

Geoff Watson, “The Canal from Rehoboth to Lewes,” oil on linen, 6” x 12,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “The Canal from Rehoboth to Lewes,” oil on linen, 6” x 12,” 2019.

And here’s the painting from two years ago. I blogged about it, briefly, here: https://www.geoffwatsonart.com/blog/2017/8/2/boat-on-the-rehoboth-lewes-canal?rq=Lewes

Geoff Watson, “Boat on the Rehoboth-Lewes Canal,” oil on panel, 11” x 14,” 2017.

Geoff Watson, “Boat on the Rehoboth-Lewes Canal,” oil on panel, 11” x 14,” 2017.

Daily painting #83: Stuff on the kitchen table

A great watercolorist, Charles Reid, enjoyed painting still lifes that captured what people left lying around, rather than still lifes carefully composed by the artist. He suggests just pointing your brush at stuff and painting it. So I did that today. I painted my brush at stuff lying on the kitchen table.

Geoff Watson, “Stuff on the kitchen table,” oil on panel, 6” x 8,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Stuff on the kitchen table,” oil on panel, 6” x 8,” 2019.

Daily painting #73: Sculpture (day 2)

Modern ateliers — art schools that focus on practical skills — often require students to draw plaster casts for days or weeks before attempting to draw a live model. I agree that it’s great practice, so I have 3 or 4 casts lying around. The trouble is, the cast I’m using now is tiny; it’s head is about 2 or 3 inches tall. That means my little 6” x 6” painting is larger than life size, which makes things a lot harder.

Also, I forgot to mark where I was painting yesterday; I inadvertently shifted positions and ended up redoing the entire thing! I’ll give it one more day, then on to other things. Sorry about the glare on the photo.

Geoff Watson, “In progress: study of a sculpture,” day 2, oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “In progress: study of a sculpture,” day 2, oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Daily painting #70: Rooftop

I hadn’t planned to paint outdoors today, but the clouds suddenly parted in the afternoon, and I rushed outside. I stood on Butler Road in Bethesda and saw this rooftop overlooking nearby River Road. I was most interested in the late-afternoon light on the walls of the buildings.

Geoff Watson, “Rooftop,” July daily painting #9, oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Rooftop,” July daily painting #9, oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Daily painting #69: sweet potato & friends

We have a few sweet potatoes in our fridge, so why not paint one? We also had this cool container, so why not paint it? And one never needs a reason to paint an apple. But I forgot to finish the apple! I didn’t gradate its color much, and (worse) I forgot its highlight! The shame of it. I’ll fix it tomorrow.

Geoff Watson, “Sweet potato and friends,” July daily painting #8, oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Sweet potato and friends,” July daily painting #8, oil on panel, 6” x 6,” 2019.

Daily painting #68, and my pochade box

Here’s the little pochade box I used for all my little paintings while visiting New York. It fits 6” x 8” panels, and it’s made by Guerilla Painter. As you can see, it’s pretty small and basic, but the design is clever. The palette slides away to reveal storage space for paint tubes and such.

Geoff Watson, photo of my Guerilla pochade box.

Geoff Watson, photo of my Guerilla pochade box.

Using that box, I did this quick sketch of Red Caps at Penn Station while waiting for my train. Again, I had only the three primary colors to work with. The painting is not the greatest thing ever, but not bad for a quick thing from life. I did touch it up some on the train and at home, but most of the work was done on location, in about half an hour.

Geoff Watson, “Sketch of Red Caps at Penn Station,” July daily painting #7, oil on panel, 6” x 8,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Sketch of Red Caps at Penn Station,” July daily painting #7, oil on panel, 6” x 8,” 2019.

Daily painting #66: Central Park

It was a hot and sunny day in New York, so I bustled my way to Central Park to do some painting. As I mentioned earlier, I brought only four colors on this trip — red, blue, yellow, red oxide — pus white. With that palette, it was hard to get some of the bright greens in this scene, but it sure was fun to try. I can see why some people advocate a limited palette: it makes you think more carefully about mixing paint. Anyway, I did this little sketch in about two hours, with the tiny 6” x 8” panel propped up in my little Guerilla Thumb Box.. I sat on a bench until the sun bore down on me, then stood behind a tree, then sat on the ground. Meanwhile tourists bustled all around me. Challenging circumstances!

Geoff Watson, “A hot day in Central Park,” July daily painting #5, oil on panel, 6” x 8,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “A hot day in Central Park,” July daily painting #5, oil on panel, 6” x 8,” 2019.

Daily painting #65: Self-sketch

I’ve taken my daily-painting show on the road! I’m in New York visiting family, and I brought a portable easel and five tubes of paint: red, yellow, blue, white, and transparent red oxide (for sketching). I spent the evening trying to paint family members, but I kept wiping out half-decent efforts — without remembering to photograph them for this blog! Dumb! So I got back to my hotel room with nothing to post. But the daily painting streak must live on! So I did a quick 15-minute self-portrait sketch, in just one color, transparent red oxide. Not great, but I like the old-style sepia feel.

Geoff Watson, “Self-study (sketch),” oil on panel, about 6” x 8,” 2019.

Geoff Watson, “Self-study (sketch),” oil on panel, about 6” x 8,” 2019.