Painting Plein Air

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plein-air style
I will be never tired painting plein-air style as long as I am able to go outside and withstand surprises of the Nature. Painting outdoors has its own charm and challenges; yet, still it is very enjoyable and the artworks have a special feeling to them. You cannot wait for too long painting under the open. The weather changes constantly, especially if you are at the ocean shore, like example above. It is my recent painting of one of my favorite places on Earth, Monterey Pacific Ocean shore. I’ve painted there many times and each time it comes out differently. The painting of Monterey above is free, though I “blocked” it in the ink lines to give it illustration kind feeling, e.g. I’ve illustrated the scene in the fast brush strokes with watercolor first and then “locked” the picture by adding rigid lines to amplify the stiffness of the rocks and power of the ocean.

Another plain air painting of Monterey shore is more impressionistic style as any of my outdoor paintings of Monterey:
Pacific Ocean shore impressionistic artwork

Here, I didn’t want to add the ink. The weather was so hot that it dried watercolor quite fast so the edges of each brush stroke were defined enough without any additions.

In comparison, the next plein-air painting of Monterey shore strives pretty much on energetic ink lines, the watercolors here are secondary. This free-style painting of Pacific Ocean shore is more a sketch than a complete painting, but it does have certain charm and spontaneity to it:

Pacific Ocean plein-air painting

Yes, each plein air painting tells a story of that specific day, but it also speaks for the mood of the artist. As an example, here is my recent plein-air landscape artwork of the calm sunny day from this week. The Spring is taking over, the grass is bright green, and many trees are opening their blossoms. A simple, yet informative landscape that illustrates a coming of a new season:

pond trees flowers Spring in California
My friend took panoramic photo of the area where we were painting that day, and I got into the picture by chance or intentionally. I don’t know. But this photograph shows so well the power of a fresh air and the creating artist, The Observer, who, during the plein-air painting trip, merges with the Nature!


 Cheers from

Abstract Ocean

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Purple abstraction

In these two artworks, which are part of my new Abstract Ocean Collection; I am sailing my artist’s imagination into exploring the ocean colors, and dramatic composition with moving waters.

The first canvas print contains the purple range of colors. The waters are rough. The waves are expressive and random.

Unlike the second abstract painting, which has the softer colors from sky blue to deep ultramarine. This artwork contains more structure. The waves are moving in a certain direction. Yet, the blue blue ocean is still quite chubby and animated:

Blue Abstraction
www.artirina.com

Standing By The Sea

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See the detail Image HERE
This painting was an inspiration after reading a beautiful poem Standing By The Sea by Carolyne Swayze. The author approached me with the request to illustrate the poem; and, the moment I read it, I knew what I wanted and how I wanted it to be painted.
 The poem was speaking to me in a very personal way. I’ve remembered my Grandmother who died at the end of year 2000, right before I came to America. It was so hard to let her go. She was my true soul mate ( in more Universal than romantic way). Living long but very hard life, she made herself becoming my great example; and, even now, writing this note I feel her peaceful presence in my memory (yet for some reason the tears are ready to come out)
I am sure that the poem would find a place in the hearts of the readers.
In my painting the boat is sailing into the Future, but the girl has her own Future and needs to find her own way. Her hand touches the heart and her heart is aligned with the ship at the horizon. The clouds on the left are darker and dramatic, when the clouds on the right are melting away lit by a Sun.
The poem speaks for itself:
Standing By The Sea
One day as I stood by the sea,
a sailing ship did sail towards me.
What beauty I thought,
what splendor, what grace,
when all at once my heart did race,
for as it neared, at a leisurely
pace,
I saw a figure with my mother’s face.
I called to her with all my might,
she turned and smiled, then sailed
out of sight.
For one eternal moment I stood and
stared,
before falling to my knees in
motherless despair.
At just that moment I heard a sound,
through teary eyes, I looked around,
to see an Angel, hovering over the
ground.
The Angel spoke in hallowed voice,
“Rejoice, dear child, for on
this day
a trip to Glory is underway,
and when she reaches the arriving
shore,
she’ll greet loved ones gone on
before.
So lament no more,”  the
Angel scried,
“For God’s Kingdom awaits her on
the other side.”
© Copyright 1997 Carolyne Swayze
All rights reserved. 
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Original Artwork is 16″x12″ on 300 lb Arches Cold Pressed Watercolor Paper

In Every Piece Of My Art
There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul

San Francisco Bay, Richmond – Plein-Air – Landscapes That Were Only A Few Feet Apart

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SOLD

Click on each image in order to see the details

Last Saturday plein-air trip brought two absolutely different views of one Bay, in one day, which were just a few hours apart. First, took rough  300lb Arches paper to paint the morning. The sun was rising and the fog was lifting up uncover a gorgeous scene. When the first painting was done, I moved my head on the right and saw a peaceful sky with almost still waters (that what couple hours can do!); and, in the middle of all this beauty three Giants were standing at the dock. I grabbed my brush and made rather minimalistic seascape emphasizing the solid Nature and the industrial invention that came together in one.

Many artists from CWA painted that day; and, as many beautiful paintings came out of it:

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10×14 “Sailboats- San Francisco Bay” Watercolor on 300 lb Arches Paper
10×14 “Richmond Docks” Watercolor on 140 lb Arches Paper
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More Plein-air paintings are HERE
In Every Piece Of My Art
There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul




Is Abstract Real?

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Is abstract
real? In terms of realism.. 

How do we name an abstract painting and how does
this apply to a viewer’s life experience? These and other questions I’ve
discussed with the Maryland artist Kimberly Goodge last week when my husband
and I were traveling to Baltimore and Washington, DC. As the artist who focuses
mostly on realistic paintings I couldn’t imagine myself to paint abstract
impressions. It just did not fit my style of careful approach to the painting,
learning the details, and thinking of composition many times before touching the
paper. Kim inspired me to look at the painting abstract process differently;
she encouraged me to try and not to be afraid. And I did. 

I’ve decided to name
my abstracts Inspiration One, Two, and Three. Abstract painting in
impressionist style does not allow thinking slow calculating each detail; especially
with watercolor abstract when paint is applied wet-on-wet. It is a great
exercise thought for the artist like me. I enjoyed it tremendously; and,
hopefully, my abstract paintings do show that.

Now back to
the question “if the abstract’s real”? Or, shell I reverse it and say: “can
Realism be Abstract?” Take a close look at the middle of the flower, the veins
of the petal, the rainbow on the bubble, or at the sand on the beach. Do you
see what I see? Let’s call it Abstract Realism, or better Real Abstract!
……………………………………………………..

Three Abstract Watercolor Paintings
14″X10″ Winsor&Newton on 300 lb Arches Cold Pressed Paper 

In Every Piece Of My Art
There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul