Sunday, March 24, 2013

Like Home

I painted at Alhambra Park yesterday.  This is the second painting in an incidental Palm Avenue series -- Moving Day and Trash Day.  The trash cans and the red curbs were factors in my choice to paint this scene, offering some immunity to big trucks parking and blocking my view.

I'm addressing two personal shortcomings I pointed out in the last post -- tardy blogging and bad car painting.  I've skipped ahead several paintings, and I'm giving you something fresh.  I'm pretty pleased with the SUV parked on the left-hand edge.  There's actually even more of it -- the entire rear wheels, but the photo of the painting wasn't well framed so I had to crop some.

I've said several times that I like houses, but I think probably what I really like is homes.  Houses that are lived in, and wear personal touches of quirky, exuberant and fragile lives.  Blue stairs, flags, potted plants and stuff.  I love interiors too - the infinite different ways people nest.  I thought about going on a house tour yesterday afternoon, but instead wound up visiting family members at their new home.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Memorial Park

This a view from Memorial Park in Pasadena, looking across Raymond at the former theater I know best as Perkins Palace and the Armory Center for the Arts.  I like the view because it's familiar without being obvious.  You know you've seen it, but you can't quite place it.  That seems like a good basis for a painting.

Like everyone else I know who actually looks at Facebook, I have a kind of love hate relationship with it.  Facebook finds your old friends you thought you had lost forever.  You can keep track of people and share people's lives without the risk or inconvenience of actually being with them.  It's also a pretty big time drain, if you check even rarely to see what's been going on in hundreds of lives.  But its hard not to check since you know it's there.  I like the like button.  I like to respond positively without having to explain why, or say something that doesn't add to the greater discourse.  I find myself reflexively looking for a like button in a whole number of circumstances.  Then I want my share of likes, my little bit of fame and positive attention, so I can't resist posting my paintings.  But then I feel like I've stolen the blog's thunder, and it takes me longer to show and tell the paintings here.  

My palm tree technique is coming along nicely, but always I struggle to express cars.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Singing Cowboy

If you're keeping track, you'll know I'm a few weeks behind on blogging my Saturday morning paintings.  I was going to say I didn't remember when I painted this, but I do.  It was the first weekend in February.  I know that because the first weekend of every month is free admission at the Autry Museum with a Bank of America card.  I sort of feel like I should apologize for having a Bank of America card.  I came to Bank of America late in life, having boycotted them for apartheid-era investments in South Africa.  I became disappointed with a long succession of other banks, and finally opened the B of A account for the convenience of transferring money to my son in college.  I haven't been really disappointed by Bank of America so far.  And the free museum admission is kind of a cool perk.  I also feel like I should apologize for visiting and even painting the Autry, since my Friends of the Southwest Museum are organizing a boycott of the Autry. But I didn't pay to get in.  But I did, come to think of it, buy a couple of thing in the gift shop.  I won't do it again for a while, but it is a super sweet gift shop.

It has even occurred to me to apologize for the painting, since I think it is disappointing in a number of technical ways.  I admit there is something I like about it anyway.  Must be the mountains.  There is a farmer's market here every Saturday, outside the museum, and pretty close to the LA Zoo.  I expected it to be a bigger market, but it's still pretty nice.  Delicious prepared food and lovely live music totally enhanced my painting experience.    

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Vista Hermosa Park

This is Vista Hermosa Park in Los Angeles.  You should visit. There is plenty of space to park.  The park is very oasis-like.  Native trees and shrubs have drawn many birds to the park.  There are wonderful views, and many places to duck away and paint them. There is a surprisingly artful playground.  The vertically striped building is 333 S. Beaudry where I used to work years back.  .