Sunday, July 24, 2011

Off Topic: My other "canvas"

I've mentioned previously that I have been concentrating on my yard this spring and summer, taking time away from the studio to do so. Well, here are images of the results. I had new front yard sod ("Compadre" zoysia) laid in late April, and I've been babying it carefully ever since. Combining its needs with my flower gardens, takes a bit of work (especially under the glaring North Carolina Piedmont sun). This week's record heat-wave (and its long string of 100-plus temperatures) has strained my resources a bit. But it's still looking good.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Pentimento (The Fabius Briggs House): Completed

The painting I began a week ago, "Pentimento (The Fabius Briggs House)," is finished. I added a few final highlights and now consider it completed. As mentioned in last week's blog post, the painting is based on an actual house here in Raleigh that is in danger of demolition. Hopefully a guardian angel can be found to save this noble structure.

"Pentimento (The Fabius Briggs House)." Oil on stretched canvas, 24 x 30 inches. Completed July 2011.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Back in the studio: Pentimento (The Fabius Briggs House)

After a four month hiatus, I returned to painting this past weekend. When I put down the brushes at the end of February, I had no intention of staying away this long. March was filled with house guests, then April brought the garden season (and a newly-sodded front yard), travel in May and June, more guests...well, it turned into a longer break than I intended.

My first post-sabbatical work is one based on a house in Raleigh with a sad story. Built sometime between 1900 and 1915, the Fabius Briggs House on Hillsborough Street once hosted a family steeped in local history (here's a blog with the full story). Unfortunately, by the 1950s it had turned into commercial property and then suffered the ultimate indignity of having a linear one-story store front added around it. Now, after decades of neglect, it appears that the structure will be demolished unless a rescuer (i.e. someone with a big heart and a bigger wallet), comes along to rescue it.

I discovered the house about two years ago, and decided then to paint it. Since then I have photographed it several times, but it wasn't until last week that I finally decided to make it my next canvas.

What you see here is the freshly completed underdrawing on top of the red acrylic-primed canvas. From this point, I then worked on it for another five hours. The painting is now essentially complete and, after I strategically place a few highlights on it after the existing oil paint dries, I will photograph the final product and post it to this blog.

"Pentimento (The Fabius Briggs House)." Oil on stretched canvas. Still in progress.