Recent paintings by Elin Pendleton. AAEA
Horse Paintings by Elin Pendleton
Animal paintings by Elin Pendleton, AAEA
Figurative paintings by Elin Pendleton, AAEA
Still life paintings by Elin Pendleton,AAEA
Landscape paintings by Elin Pendleton, AAAEA
One Painting Each Day
Elin Pendleton's Painting Instructional Videos
Elin Pendleton's Instrucitonal Books on Painting
Thoughts for Students
for Collectors
About the Elin Pendleton, Artist

Search Elin's Site
(opens a new page)

Verified Seller

The Daily Paintings
Archives:

2010
january
February
march
April
May
June

2009
january
February
march
April
May
June
July
August
September
October
November
December

2008
January
February
March
April
May
June
July
August
September
October
November
December

2007
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

2006
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

2005
Most are now on iTunes, with expanded audio commentary.(Opens new page)
Oct
Nov
Dec

Updated 3/29/12

The Daily Paintings and Postcard-Sized Sketches in Oils and Acrylics

Subscribe to Elin's "Daily Paintings" and receive every beautiful painting or lesson in your email through Googlegroups.

Click HERE to Subscribe

To the Archives (keeps you on the same page)

Prices as noted, many are available through Elin's ebay store.

November 2008



1

Here's the value structure for the next large landscape with horses. This painting is 30 x 30 inches, and will be the larger version of the painting of the aspens featured last Tuesday (opens a new window with just the painting). You can tell, even at this early stage, that I'm thinking of one of those six value plans (from Edgar A. Whitney, and the workshops I teach). Which one do you think it will be? Not chaos, not large dark in midtones. Not small dark, large light in midtones, not gradation. Two left....Hmmmm? Well, perhaps tomorrow will shed some light as this painting progresses.

The next question everyone had was, "Where's Chiron?" So herewith I submit a photo of him in his new home here at Two Trees, with Vincent van Goat, companion extraordinaire (head in the feeder, of course!). This image shows Chiron's coloration best--I'm seeing a dark bay, but with his head being black, I wonder if he might shed out in the spring to be a black? No matter, bay or black he's beautiful to me.
It has been a week now and he is settled in nicely. The Andalusian personality is coming out--yesterday we had workers trimming the tall pines in back, and I came out to see how it was going. As I walked up, I started talking to them. Chiron, standing at the far side of the pen, perked up his ears at my voice, and then came over to the near side to greet me. What fun! Having him on the property means I can visit/train him any time. Good for my busy schedule.


His only white are on his two coronets near his rear hooves. Ok, I'm a bit besotted. Bear with me.

2

If you'll compare this image with yesterday's, you'll note that although the value structure has not changed that much, there is a lot more "stuff" in the darker areas.

I've come to realize a few things in painting so many pictures over the years--the more time I spend on the areas that aren't all that important, the better the end result in the painting. Some might say I approach painting by backing into it. Perhaps so, however this method of not even drawing the focal points until much later int he process has helped to make my work cohesive from edge to edge.

I am still completely in the cool boxes, and using mixes of three or more colors to create and modify the greens and darks that are going in. The yellow in the aspens-to-be is the shadow orange, yellow ochre. The bit of orang on the right edge of the group is created with the cool yellow ochre and cool alizarin crimson.

In design on this piece, the horizontal of the strip of lighted foreground will be related to the clump of aspens in sunlight, and their trunks will create the verticals necessary to connect the two areas.

On other news, I have jury duty this week, and am also turning in eight paintings for the "Off the Wall" fundraiser at the Riverside Art Museum tomorrow. They are small still life works from my daily painting days, and a couple of landscapes. These will sell for $100, $200 and $300 with proceeds going to support the museum. If I get called in for the duty, I'll take my laptop and update the web site. No wasted moments!
3

Before you wig out on me, with two images of the same painting, let me explain. The image that is above to the left is the earlier version of the later one, which is below it. I am showing you these two together for a distinct purpose.

As artists, we all go through phases and stages in our paintings. Some easier and some harder. I had a major "AHA" moment with this painting just after getting to the stage that is on the left (the "busy" one). Some of you will say, "Oh but that one is so much more interesting than the other one." There's a problem, though. It has gotten ahead of itself. It is TOO SOON for that much edge--that much "eye drivers". When I brought it back to the easel after photographing it, all those hard-edge shapes came together and started screaming for importance.

Now the scary part for some of you. I took a rag and wiped the canvas in many places, eliminating edges. You see, it is all too easy to get hard edges when we paint. I can always find a hard edge with a brushmark. It really takes some courage to remove them and then replace ONLY those that are necessary for the composition and for driving the viewer's eye. Softening the edges on major areas now gives me great latitude in placing edges where I need those "eye drivers". A sharp edge will always drive the eye. Now I can start playing with what's important and what isn't, knowing that these earlier layers make a great supporting symphony for the soloist, which comes later.


Will have some news about the upcoming workshops in the next few days...California and Georgia, and FLorida, too! But tomorrow I have jury duty (yeah, my number's up--appropriate on election day, eh?)
6

I got back to this one last night, and am glad I did. Jury duty didn't last but a couple of hours, once they said they needed people for 18 days and I told them I was self-employed, an educator and a consultant. I don't mind jury service--especially since they have free wifi in the courts, but three weeks out of my life would definitely impact my painting, lessons, and my teaching!

So, for teaching, let's get to it. Can you see from my prior post how many of those "fuzzy" edges have been found again? The artist's choice of which edges to leave soft (aka "transitional") and those that are regained to a hard status is what makes an artist's work unique. If you're not already familiar with John Singer Sargent's paintings, please go Google image him, and study his masterful use of brush strokes to lead and define the composition of his work. Wow. What a mentor for those of us looking to see edges handled by a master. And of course, there is the living legend in Richard Schmid, who reigns King of the Edges. He has a web site. But don't go away to it just yet.

In starting with the reference photo of the aspens, we artists have to make choices. If we paint to the photograph too closely, what we do is take that "match" for the fire of our creativity, and it is still a match when we're done. If we use that match (photo reference) as the starting point for our work, then the canvas can come ablaze under our hand. I did not stick with the reference photograph provided, but changed and bent the design to make what I hope is a better statement. One plein air artist I know put it well, "If you paint just what you see, you may not get good design in your paintings. God was planting bushes. You, the artist, might need to move a few to get a good design."

I've been asked, "Elin, how do you get such good images of your paintings?" So I offer the image below to answer that question. This was the image that became the one above. I take my work out into morning sunlight (not in shadow or under the eaves as some people would have you do.) I lean it up against something, and this is VERY important--with the canvas tilted about 12-15 degrees off of true 90 degrees to the sun. We visual artists need to SEE this, so look at the rock I put in the foreground, and see how the shadow isn't quite parallel to the bottom of the canvas, but "leans" a bit toward it. No glare, GREAT color, and true values.

Also note that the edges of the canvas are parallel to the sides of the image. That's very important if you don't want to learn how to "skew" and "distort" in photo editing programs. I know how, but prefer an easier path, so line up my sides of the work with the sides of the viewfinder.

My camera is a Canon digital, an ancient D30, but I also get great images with my newer Canon PowerShot A590. I've found it's not the camera, but the angle and sunlight that make the difference. Of course, I always photograph work without frames or glass.
10

Finally finished this one, and I am so pleased with it. Although a struggle to keep the pack horses and rider as a secondary focal point, I think I managed to pull it off, and actually, the end result was easier than I expected. Had I painted this image even one year ago, I would have put those animals in full sunlight, and the aspens would have played second fiddle. I'm much more pleased with these paintings, some of which are scheduled for entry into the Saks Gallery Show in Denver--the Women Artists of the West membership show, opening in January.

One reason I was away from the easel was because of a too-short visit from Jennie Scott from Australia who blew through on her way from Northern California to Houston, Texas. Jennie is a well-known sculptor of horses, and here's an image of her at my dining room table working on one of her raku sculptures--and right beside her are two of the driftwood and ceramic pieces. WOW, to see them "for real" was quite a treat. And Jennie is a lively, wonderful lady who is welcome to visit any time! In the early morning she was out walking and seeing the coyotes. And you just know I loved to hear her talk with that "Aussie" accent!

Yes, please forward this on to your friends, and thank you!

13 I've been asked to "explain" my Color System--Hmmmm. That can be a bit of a challenge, since it requires a minimum of three full days by Color Boot Campers to get an inkling of what it is all about. So I'll pose the question to all of you who have been through a Color Boot Camp, and have seen the Color Flash Cards:

How would you describe the Color System to someone unfamiliar with it?

Please reply in one of two ways: 1) post a comment to the blog, so it will remain there permanently for others to see, or, 2) reply to this message and I'll put some at the end of this message once it has gone out. I'll really enjoy your responses, and hope you'll do #1 and post them as comments to this blog entry on the blog site. If you reply to the email, you'll only talk to me. I think there's much to be offered in how you see the Color System. So can you help me out?


Now, here's an 8 x 6 evening sky painting done with those Golden Open acrylics, using the Color System. It was a out-of-head sketch done at the very end of the workshop at the Art Expo with Suzanne next to me and Catherine across the tables. We had a great time! This one is available for $175 including shipping as a nice example of the sunset skies and also "open" acrylic handling. Paypal is fine. Fun!

I'll be starting another large canvas over the weekend for you, and again I'm going to use those Open Acrylics. I think I will also video the process, and consider assembling the various footages I have in the digital editing room into a new DVD--called "Acrylics and Oils with the CS"... or something.
17 Thanks to all who emailed asking if we were affected by the fires. We're fine, about 12 miles from the Freeway Complex fire, but it is horrific none the less. I said I would paint this weekend--but the news and fretting about friends kept me glued to the monitor and the web news.

Here's the start of an 18-inch square acrylic. No, it isn't smoke and fire, but at this stage I can't help yet see it. All these layers are done with regular "fast dry" acrylics, starting with the get-rid-of-the-white cadmium red light underneath. The scene is evening sunlit rocks, and will continue the landscape with secondary focal point idea--there will be a solitary ground squirrel on one of the rocks, lower left.

The lay in is done with cools, mostly burnt umber, ultramarine blue and some white, contrasting nicely with the warm under painting, and establishing the large masses. I wish I had a good photograph to share with you of the source, but the image is from memory and a really bad photo of the rocks and brush across the street from our old place. Evening light on the rocks was always a color moment! the distant mountains will tone down with additional layers, however right now they appear to have an evening glow.

Tomorrow I'll start with those Open Acrylics and share how that goes.
24 It's been interesting thinking about those Open acrylics from Golden... I hesitated to start using them because I wasn't quite ready to deal with the lesser known drying time (longer) and the workability on the canvas (also longer). But now that the company from the past weekend is gone, I can settle back into the studio and progress on this canvas and others.

The Open acrylics are now out and in their own pill boxes, and I'm using them from the last image until this canvas is finished. It is fun to "fudge" edges long after regular acrylics would have long dried.
I'm still completely in the cool box in the Color System, and the "fire" of the underpainting is only visible by that large round rock. No details here, just more layers of color, and more blending happening.

On another note, how about a recent picture of me by our pond? Some of you don't even know what I look like without that painting hat, so here's one I took yesterday morning in (yup!) Morning Light on our front patio. That's Sparky on my lap and Onslow's head in the lower left corner.



May all of you have a happy Thanksgiving this week who celebrate it. I'll be posting more on this painting and another commission I've started, but some of you may already be out on long vacations to visit family and friends. I'll see you when you come back!