Monday, July 27, 2009

Mr. Clucky in Miami, 12x16

SOLD"Mr. Clucky in Miami", 12x16, oil on wrapped canvas(Note: you can click on the painting to see a close up of the texture.)

I was very happy to find out today that Mr. Clucky has been juried into the American Impressionist Society's annual juried show at the Saks Gallery in Denver, Colorado, running October 23rd through December 1st. The show was judged by incredible impressionist artist Quang Ho who will be doing a demonstration at the gallery on October 24th. Please visit the AIS website here for more information about this exciting exhibit!

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Sunday, July 26, 2009

Tuscan Vineyard

SOLD"Tuscan Vineyard-summer" framed

Last week I was able to hang my solo exhibit at The Back Eddy Bistro in downtown, Venice. I was invited to do the exhibit through the Venice Art Center's satellite program, combining art with business in this little resort town in a joint venture. Of the 13 paintings that are on display, I do believe this one is my favorite.

Here are a few photos of the restaurant. If you haven't eaten at The Back Eddy yet, what are you waiting for? The food is wonderful and the restaurant has a wonderful continental ambiance. See you there!

To purchase any of the paintings on exhibit there, please call Haley at The Venice Art Center at (941)525-4227.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

The Arabesque

"The Arabesque", 11x14, oil on canvas panel

The other day, I pulled out what seemed like hundreds of thousands of photos I'd collected of my students when I was the director of The West Chester Performing Arts Center some years ago in the suburban Philadelphia area. I never get tired of seeing the looks of avid concentration and dedication on their young faces. By now, those young girls are grown women, probably with active lives and families of their own. How the time flies by!

This past Christmas, I was incredibly proud to have had the chance to see my niece Kaitlin dance the role of Clara in her dance school's production of The Nutcracker. She was simply lovely in the role and I am delighted that a great deal of her Aunt Mary's passion for ballet rubbed off on her!

I was also very happy to see Melissa Sandvig's emotional performance on this week's episode of "So You Think You Can Dance". Melissa has been a favorite of mine since the beginning of the season, and although I think the remaining two girls are also quite talented and wonderful, the amount of maturity and abandon that was required to dance Tyce DiOrio's pas de deux about breast cancer could have only been done with such an incredible outcome by a lovely dancer like Melissa. I am very happy that this season produced a new awareness of classical ballet to the younger viewing audience, thanks to Melissa. I wish her luck in the final weeks of the show. My guess is that Janine or Brandon will win this year, and I am usually right!

This painting is sold, but if you are interested in ballet art, please visit my website at Maryanne JAcobsen Fine Art, and click on the ballet and portraiture page in the sidebar.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Wildflower Garden in Denmark


"Wildflower Garden in Denmark"-12x16, oil on linen

A few years back, my husband and I took a trip to Denmark to visit my husband's relatives and celebrate the birthday of a cousin. We had a wonderful time and were able to go back in time and trace my husband's history, which included a dad who was a stowaway on a boat out of Copenhagen headed for America many, many years ago. The stowaway dad was discovered at Ellis Island, became a merchant marine, and the rest is history for our family!

The Scandinavian cousin took us on a wonderful tour while we were there, and today I pulled out the pictures I had taken from the trip. This one caught my eye:

I recall the moment I spied this beautiful wildflower garden. We had just come over a bridge where there was a castle-like structure with a swan in the water and some red -timbered buildings with thatched roofs to the left of us... Sorry, I can't recall the name of that particular village in Denmark, but if anyone knows of it, I'd love to have a name attached to my painting!

At the foot of that bridge was this incredible wildflower garden, and although I was not a painter at the time, I knew I had to try to capture the beauty of that garden with my camera! Anyway, the trip was wonderful, and I am glad that although I was using a pretty lousy camera at the time, I was able to translate my memories of the moment into a painting!

The light temperature in Denmark is very, very different from where I now live. See how cool and grayish the light temperature is! I always kind of chuckle whenever I look at the beautiful paintings of fellow daily painter Rene Plein Air, because I know he is painting true to the light temperature in the Netherlands. If Rene ever comes to Florida he'd better be prepared for a road to Damascus moment! Because the light here is really blinding!

Compare the photo of the wildflower garden in Denmark with this beach scene in Southwest Florida and you'll see what I mean. If you have no idea what I'm talking about. look at the sky color, which is the source of light in all landscapes:
See how strong the light source is in the Florida scene compared to the wildflower gardenin Denmark?

Since everything in a painting is affected by the temperature of the light, it is imperative to get the sky temperature perfect when painting a landscape that will hopefully depict the character of the scene. Although I usually don't like to paint scenes that lack contrast and have a limited value range, I really wanted to do this one. I cooled all my colors considerably from what I would typically do in a Florida landscape and I was happy with the outcome!

Some day it would be nice to return to Denmark and other European cities that we have visited.

Friday, July 17, 2009

View from my garden-Plein air

"View from my garden"-11x14

I've been out of town much of the week, and I was very happy to find myself home again today with a typical southwest Florida blue sky to raise my spirits. (It rained all week, where I visited, and I have gotten used to blue skies 95% of the time, so I have a new understanding of people with SAD!)

Although I was able to paint the little "Here Comes the Sun" piece in a gloomy hotel room, I could not wait to get outside this morning, albeit the extreme heat and humidity I faced. I decided to paint in my back yard, where I'd have ample access to water (and a pool!) if things got too uncomfortable. This is the view looking north up the hill and past neighbor Steve's house, to the left. Within 15 minutes there was sweat pouring down my back and my cat Sabrina kept crying incessantly from behind the door of the caged lanai, probably unable to figure out why I had changed my painting location to the great outdoors, which is off limits to her.

The past few days gave me plenty of quiet time to think and read, and I read Kevin MacPherson's "Fill Your Oil Paintings with Light and Color" from cover to cover. Macpherson is one of my favorite impressionist painters, and I decided to take his advice and go with a limited palette today, which included only six colors, including white. I had no trouble mixing the various colors, my only problem is that I detest alizarin crimson, which is one of the colors he advocates. I stuck with it to the end though, and I do like the way the limited palette creates unity in this painting. I also incorporated brush work into this one, and just as he warned- there's a learning curve that occurs when you try to use a tool that you are less skilled with. I do like using both the brush and the palette knife, so I am going to keep at the brushwork. As far as painting plein air again in the near future- it's just too darned hot!

If you would like to purchase this painting, please contact Leah at Collector's Gallery and Framery for purchase info. Leah can be reached at (941)488-3029.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

"Here Comes the Sun"

"Here Comes the Sun", 8x10, oil on canvas-$69

I'm finally feeling a little better after a difficult week. If you love this old Beatle's song (from their Abbey Road album) as much as I do, you can play it just by clicking here.

Now, sing along with me, and SMILE:

Here comes the sun, here comes the sun,
and I say it's all right

Little darling, it's been a long cold lonely winter
Little darling, it feels like years since it's been here
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
and I say it's all right

Little darling, the smiles returning to the faces
Little darling, it seems like years since it's been here
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
and I say it's all right

Sun, sun, sun, here it comes...
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes...
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes...
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes...
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes...

Little darling, I feel that ice is slowly melting
Little darling, it seems like years since it's been clear
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun,
and I say it's all right
It's all right

Thursday, July 02, 2009

The Getaway Cottage-Florida cracker style house

"The Getaway Cottage", 9x12, oil on wrapped canvas

I visited St. Augustine this week and it seems I never get tired of the quirky architecture in that ancient city. You can pass a gorgeous Victorian mansion on one corner, turn down a side street and be greeted by an old ramshackle house with a tin roof . The main style of architecture in the historic district was strongly influenced by the Spanish for a time. The later colonial period brought the architecture of colonial America into play, and the two and three story wooden houses with the second story porches is the style that I most readily connect with St. Augustine. Whatever style you prefer- St. Augustine homes are old-very old- and like fine wine and mature women, their facades are filled with character and a comfortable familiarity that borders on déjà vu.

Even though the heat was practically unbearable this week, (96 degrees with very high humidity) I got out and painted for a few hours yesterday. This cute little house with a tin roof and wooden shutters was the result. I think it looks inviting, don't you?

This was painted with palette knife only and has thick passages of paint. To see the impasto better, check out the photo below, in which I photographed the painting outside and the impasto shows clearly: (You can also click on the photo to see it better)

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