Tuesday, December 30, 2014

"Chilly in the Shade", 11x14, plein air, Bay Preserve, palm trees, Intracoastal waterway, Florida art

"Chilly in the Shade", 11x14, plein air

I haven't wirtten in my blog much lately, due to the busy Christmas season- spending time with love ones, shopping, eating too much, etc.

This painting was painted in early December, during a very chilly week by Southwest Florida standards.

It was painted at Bay Preserve during a workshop with the amazingly talented master impressionist, Lori Putnam. Lori's a hoot- she totally manages to balance the seriousness of painting with a sense of humor.

This was one of four paintings that I did during the workshop. It was done with a limited palette of Cad Yellow Pale, Cad Red Light, Permanent Rose and Ultramarine Blue. Lori uses Napthol red instead of the two reds I used, but for me, limiting myself to only 4 colors plus white was a stretch.

Here was my scene on that chilly morning:

I considered adding the artist, but thought better of it in light of the challenges I was having with the limited palette.

Thanks, Lori! It was an awesome workshop!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

"Pigtails and Teddy Bears", 12x12, oil, paintings of little girls, toys, teddy bears, braids, pigtails, award-winning paintings

"Pigtails and Teddy Bears", 12x12, oil

Was very happy to find out that my painting "Pigtails and Teddy Bears" received a merit award last week at the Venice Art Center's Portrait and Figurative Exhibit, "The Human Condition". This is the third year in a row that I have received an award in this show, so I am grateful. There are many, many talented portrait and figurative artists that live in my area and enter this show, including Hodges, Soileau, Bill Farnworth, Jeff Cornell and many others, so I am always a little in awe to find that my work has been recognized amongst such a talented group of peers.

Thank-you to judge, Jon Greeley, for the recognition.

This painting is beautifully framed and can be purchased through the Venice Art Center. Feel free to email me at maryannejacobsen@aol.com for additional information.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

"Country French", 12x16, oil on masonite, bicycle, bread, baguette, French countryside, Normandy, French landscapes

"Country French", 12x16, oil on masonite

Painted this before Thanksgiving and have not posted it because I wasn't sure if I should make changes to it. I think I've decided to leave it alone, at least for now. I altered the composition somewhat By putting the tree in the foreground to connect the darks but then I wasn't sue if it worked or not.

I think this is one of those paintings that I should put away for 6 months or so, and then take it out with a set of fresh eyes. I loved the contrast of the French peasant with the baguette in the basket, against the stately French country estate.

This was painted with a palette knife only.

Monday, December 15, 2014

"Window Seat", 6x6, oil, 6 inch squared show, grapes, sunflowers, still life

"Window Seat", 6x6, oil

This is one of three paintings that were juried into Randy Higbee's annual 6x6 inch squared show this year. I always love the show, and this year the entries were exceptional. Honored to be included in the show for the third consecutive year, and happy that two out of three paintings have sold, including, "Window Seat". Thanks for all your hard work, Randy and staff at King of Frames!

Saturday, December 06, 2014

"Senior Stroll", 12x12, oil on board, figurative, three men walking, seniors, European cityscape, MAryanne Jacobsen fine art

"Senior Stroll", 12x12, oil on board

Wow. It seems like it's been forever since I posted. Have been so busy I can hardly keep track of everything. I painted this one right before Thanks giving and never had a chance to post it. This is a color palette that I don't normally paint with, but I'll definitely be using it again as it lends itself well to the old buildings in Europe. I used Ultramarine Blue for the lights and Raw Sienna for the darks.

The last time I tried a combo like that was when I painted a doorway in St. PAul de Vence. It worked well for the that one, too.

This painting is available through Galerie Du Soleil. Please call 239-417-3450 for more information.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

"Wildflower Meadow", 11x14, oil on board, palette knife, mountain, colorist art, wildflowers

"Wildflower Meadow", 11x14, oil on board

This was a color study that I've been working on for the past couple weeks. My goal was to make the color receed as it went back into space. It was painted with a palette knife.

Email me at maryannejacobsen@aol.com if you have any interest in purchasing this color study.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

"Maid in the Shade", 6x6, oil on board, framed- Randy Higbee 6x6 inch squared show, women, women in hats, wine, books, garden scenes, sunflowers, Table and flowers, impressionism

"Maid in the Shade", 6x6, oil on board, framed

This beautiful painting of a woman enjoying the outdoors with a glass of wine and her favorite hat and book has been juried into the prestigious annual Randy Higbee 6x6 inch squared show in Costa Mesa, California. The scene is a favorite of mine and I've done it a few other times in other sizes and formats and it's always a popular seller in galleries. It is  to be framed in a beautiful dark wooden frame as shown and would make the perfect gift for the holidays.

You do not need to attend the gallery opening in order to purchase the painting. To purchase, simply follow this link, to purchase online with credit card or Paypal. The exhibit has just begun and the show will continue through December 23rd. Get a jump start on your holiday gift list with this picture perfect original oil painting, by award-winning impressionist  and internationally collected artist Maryanne Jacobsen!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

"Covered Bridge on Yoder Road", 6x6, oil on board-paintings of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Elverson, Yoder Road, covered bridge, farms, red covered bridge, autumn landscapes,miniature art

"Covered Bridge on Yoder Road", 6x6, oil on board

While I was in Pennsylvania a few weeks ago, we were driving along Yoder Road when suddenly I screamed out, "Stop the Car!"

My husband obediently obeyed and I jumped out and shot some photos of this quintessential little Chester County icon- the covered bridge.

This is the scene I was looking at:

As you can see, it was a postcard perfect scene to paint, which is what I did when I came home.

This little painting would make a lovely gift and is also available framed. Contact me for additional information at maryannejacobsen@aol.com.

Sunday, November 09, 2014

"Sunsets with Jill", 9x12, cats, paintings of cats, sunsets, Cedar Key

"Sunsets with Jill", 9x12

And so Jill's legacy to the art world lives on.

What am I talking about, you ask?

If you have been reading my blog for any length of time, you may recall that I took a lovely trip last spring to Cedar Key, Florida for a weekend getaway with my hubby. There were absolutely no accommodations to be found in town, but as luck would have it, a chance walk into a realtor's office provided the much needed getaway accommodation  we'd been hoping for.

When we saw the home, we knew we had hit paydirt! It was absolutely lovely, beautifully decorated, and came with its own dock and golf cart! Yup, life is good sometimes.

So we began the weekend with a trip to a local seafood restaurant for some take-out, which we brought back to our "getaway" so that we could enjoy the sunset from our prime location, as we ate our meal on the deck.

But seconds after sitting down to my salmon plate, a very strange looking cat meandered up to me and plopped herself down right onto my lap! When I say strange, I am not exaggerating. This was probably the homeliest cat I had ever seen, and I'm a cat lover.

The long and the short of it was that the cat wanted my salmon dinner much more than my affection and the two of us began a cat and mouse game over who would end up with the salmon. I finally gave into her demands forking over piece after piece of savory salmon pate. From that point on, I was sunk. She never let me alone for the rest of the weekend, and at one point I had to cast her over the side of the dock to get her out of my paints! I had set up on that dock the entire weekend, and probably turned out about half a dozen paintings from that one location- sunrises, sunsets and everything in between.

So the last night we were there, I painted Jill doing her sunset walk, and the painting sold almost as soon as I posted it here on my blog.

Seems other people love homely cats, too!

This painting is also sold and was commissioned by the owner of the lovely home where we stayed. Interestingly, Jill the cat does not live there. She only visits when people eat salmon on the deck.

To read more about Jill and see photos of her in real life, go to my earlier post which is here.

Friday, November 07, 2014

"Blue Shutters, McCoy/Cigler Residence", 8x8, oil on board , painting the brandywine Valley, West Chester, beautiful homes in West Chester, Pennsylvania, Marshall street

"Blue Shutters, McCoy/Cigler Residence", 8x8, oil on board, plein air

It seems hard to believe that it was over two weeks ago since I painted this lovely home in West Chester, Pa. for Plein Air Brandywine Valley. I think that I missed the beautiful fall colors almost as soon as we hit the Georgia state line and everything turned green again. The absence of color (and people who know my art, know how much I love color!) down here in Florida throughout the year affects me in probably much the same way that some people experience SAD, or Seasonal Affective Disorder, a condition created by the lack of sunshine over northern skies for months at a time during certain times of the year. Maybe there should be a condition called BLOC that identifies people like myself who suffer from Bland Local Ocular Conditions! (just kidding.)

Back to the house...

I do believe this is one of the prettiest homes in all of the West Chester borough! The home is sort of a yellow ochre color with blue shutters that set if off beautifully. We were able to paint anywhere on the property and that was the hard task- choosing where to set up and paint!

Here  is a photo of some artists who set up out back in the pool area. Too bad it wasn't quite warm enough for a dip, but then again, how much painting would get done if it turned into a pool party?

In the end, I set up directly in front of the home. It was just too pretty not to paint!

In the end, the painting sold at the exhibit opening at Winterthur Museum. I do hope that the owners enjoy the painting as much as I enjoyed doing it!

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

"The Owl and the Pussycat #2", 6x6 oil , nursery rhymes, bedtime stories, cats, owls, fantasy art, Maryanne JAcobsen art

"The Owl and the Pussycat #2", 6x6 oil

A few years ago I painted The Owl and the Pussycat, a scene after the whimsical Edward Lear poem by the same name.

I was always a little sorry that I sold that first painting, and vowed to try it again one day.

The opportunity came up recently, when I was asked to do the painting again as a commission piece.

It's always hard to replicate a painting that you've done before, because you can never get your head back into that very same place! So instead, I tried to make this one different- and better- concentrating on the tenderness between the elegant fowl and his furry lover. I was happy with the way it came out.

If you are not familiar with the poem, shame on you! And here goes....

The Owl and the Pussy-Cat went to sea
In a beautiful pea-green boat:
They took some honey,
and plenty of money
Wrapped up in a five-pound note.

The Owl looked up to the stars above,
And sang to a small guitar,
"O lovely Pussy, O Pussy, my love,
What a beautiful Pussy you are,
You are,
You are!
What a beautiful Pussy you are!"

Contemporary Illustrator: Donna L. Derstine
Pussy said to the Owl, "You elegant fowl,
How charmingly sweet you sing!
Oh! let us be married;
too long we have tarried:
But what shall we do for a ring?"
They sailed away, for a year and a day,
To the land where the bong-tree grows;
And there in a wood a Piggy-wig stood,
With a ring at the end of his nose,
His nose,
His nose,
With a ring at the end of his nose.

"Dear Pig, are you willing to sell for one shilling
Your ring?" Said the Piggy, "I will."
So they took it away, and were married next day
By the Turkey who lives on the hill.
They dined on mince and slices of quince,
Which they ate with a runcible spoon;

And hand in hand on the edge of the sand
They danced by the light of the moon,
The moon,
The moon,
They danced by the light of the moon.

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

"October Morning", 12x16, oil on board, Chester County, Pennsylvania, Chadds Ford, Nielsen estate, farms, barns, fall foliage, Brandywine Valley plein air

"October Morning", 12x16, oil on board

This is another painting that I did during Plein Air Brandywine Valley. It was actually my favorite of the four because I truly enjoyed the painting experience on that lovely sunny, crisp October morning. I had worn layers of clothing because of how cold it had been the day before, but found myself stripping the layers off one by one as the morning progressed and the temperatures rose.

 Yikes! By 11Am it was darned near warm!!!!!!!

This one was also painted at the Nielsen Estate in Chadds Ford. (See my previous post here. )

It is such a joy for me to be able to experience different climates, different vegetation and hence the different challenges to my palette, values, etc. Compared to Florida, the northeastern skies are cooler, grayer, and the contrast is much more subtle than here in Florida. So I truly learn through these Paint-outs and hope I'll be able to continue to do them in the years to come.

If you have any interest in this painting, just send me an email at maryannejacobsen@aol.com.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

"Early Morning Snowfall", 6x6, oil on board

"Early Morning Snowfall", 6x6, oil on board

It's that time of year when I begin to yearn for chestnuts roasting on an open fire and jackfrost nipping at my nose.

Living in Florida during the winter months is wonderful. The temperatures are moderate, the humidity is gone and the skies are nearly always blue! Yet, I cannot help but miss those things that make the holiday season magical- candles glowing in the windows on a wintry night, smoke from chimneys casting billowing shadows up into the crisp clean air, and red ribbons and green wreaths putting a touch of festive color into the grayness of the days.

So I painted this scene to put myself in a holiday spirit- after all- Thanksgiving is right around the corner. I used the beautiful house I used to live in up in Chester Springs, Pennsylvania as my reference photo.

There. I hope that pretty scene will put you into the holiday mood as well!

Friday, October 31, 2014

"Prime Time", 9x12, oil on board, plein air Brandywine Valley, Chadds Ford, Pa., Winterthur, Andrew Wyeth country, fall foliage, Pennsylvania landscapes, twisted trees, autumn

"Prime Time", 9x12, oil on board

I just returned from Pennsylvania where I participated in  the Plein Air Brandywine Valley art competition and sale to benefit Children's Beach House in Wilmington , Delaware. It was my second year of doing this competition and every year is wonderful because of the exceptional places that the artists are allowed to paint. People generously offer to open up their private estates to the artists, where we can paint vistas of horses, donkeys, old barns, classic Pennsylvania fieldstone farmhouses, hay stacks and much more.

It's a beautiful time of year, with the fall foliage at full peak. Hence the name of the painting above which was painted at the Nielsen estate in Chadds Ford, Pa., home to generations of Wyeth families. I was drawn to the interesting shape of the twisted tree as well as the companion tree on the other side of the winding path, which was in full fall gala garb!

The week of painting culminates in a gala, held at the Winterthur Museum, where people who purchase tickets can choose from literally dozens or gorgeous plein air paintings available for purchase.

Unfortunately, I only painted 4 paintings this year, since two of the days were cold and rainy and I have Raynaud's disease, which is a circulatory problem that prevents me from going outdoors in cold and damp weather. But I was happy with the paintings that I did on Monday and Tuesday, and one of them was purchased by a collector.

Here I am posing in front of my paintings at the gala.

I'll be posting more of the work that I did last week over the next few days. Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

"Guileless", 14x11, oil on board, paintings of children, little girls, girls with bonnets, children, Renaissance fair

"Guileless", 14x11, oil on board

This is a painting that I started months ago. Every so often I'd take it out and change a few things on it. Finally, I thought it was finished when it looked like this:

I liked the fact that it looked impressionistic and so I titled it "White Bonnet" and called it done.

The other day I took it out again and decided that I hated it. So I totally reworked her face as well as other parts extensively. I definitely think it's done now! The little girl now looks exactly like my niece's little girl. She's a beautiful child and her name is Faith. I met her recently for the first time , and I think I had her in the back of my mind when I decided to re-work this painting.

More often than not, I mess up a painting totally when I go back into it and re-work it. In this case, I'm definitely glad that I took the chance!

Friday, October 10, 2014

"The Red House, Swim Beach", 6x6, oil , Monhegan Island, Venice Art Center, award-winning paintings, MAryanne Jacobsen art, boats, red

"The Red House, Swim Beach", 6x6, oil

Was delighted to find out that my little painting of the Red House on Monhegan Island was awarded second place in the Venice Art Center's Mini and Maxi show this evening.

I almost didn't enter the painting because I was confused about the size requirements for the show. Turns out that the paintings had to be either very large or very small. The painting that I took over to receiving was only an 11x14, but I soon learned it was too large. So I went home, picked up this little guy and brought him back to the art center.

So happy I did!

The painting is framed in a beautiful Randy Higbee floater frame and can be purchased through he Venice Art Center.  You can call them at 941-485-7136 for purchase information regarding this little gem.

Here I am at tonight's reception with good friend and fellow plein air painter Karen Hitt. Karen rec'd the third place ribbon for her lovely little watercolor of Venice. Congrats, Karen!

Thursday, October 09, 2014

"Peaches and Cream", 16x20, oil on linen, paintings of fruit, roses, peaches, blue, award-winning art, Maryanne Jacobsen , impressionism

"Peaches and Cream", 16x20, oil on linen

I painted this one a while back and at the last minute I decided to enter it into the Venice Art Center's "Tutti Fruitti" competition. The only requirement was that fruit be included in the design.

I was pleased to find out that the painting received an honorable mention in the exhibit last month. I was in very good company on the wall with the ribbons as Hodges Soileau won first place, Bill Farnsworth won second and  Jeff Cornell won third. My friend and avid plein air painter Karen Hitt also received an honorable mention. It was a great show with hundreds of entries so I was pleased to receive a ribbon. Thanks to Judge Diane Mannion for choosing this painting for a ribbon.

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

"Morning Light, Alsace", 30x40, Alsace, green shutters, France, large paintings, street scenes, Maryanne Jacobsen art, doorways, flowers

"Morning Light, Alsace", 30x40

This painting was completed recently and is available through Galerie du Soleil. Please visit their website here for more information about this painting and as well is this beautiful gallery in  the heart of Naples, Florida!

Sunday, October 05, 2014

"1887 Church", plein air, 11x14, Paint the Town, Manatee Village, Bradenton Florida, historic buildings, Art Center Manatee, Maryanne Jacobsen art

"1887 Church", plein air, 11x14, oil on board
(This painting received an honorable mention in Paint the Town -Bradenton, Florida )

Last week I participated in Paint the Town in downtown Bradenton, Florida. This Paint-out is in it's 5th or 6th year and it is the 3rd or 4th year that I have participated, but happily it was the first year that I received a ribbon for my efforts!

The judge this year was esteemed artist and illustrator Bill Farnsworth. There were many other wonderful plein air artists that participated in the competition including Katie Dobson-Cundiff, Karen Hitt, Joseph Melancon, and Susie Covert to name a few, so I was incredibly pleased to have received recognition amongst so much talent.

The Paint-Out began with a quick draw last weekend at the Riverwalk, which I chose not to participate in due to the distance from my house to the Quick Draw site. (A good artist knows her limitations and I am definitely NOT a morning person!)

I went out the following day to paint in downtown Bradenton, only to find I'd forgotten my paintbrushes! A wasted day, alas, but a lesson learned in checking supplies!

Monday had mixed skies, and although I painted on downtown Main Street, I was not happy with the results. Tuesday was crazy with torrential rains at Cortez fishing village, where I went to paint that day. (More about that in a different post!)

Finally on Wednesday, the last day of the Paint-out, the skies were hot, humid but sunny and I knew I had a shot at a decent painting. I headed out to historic Manatee Village. Here's what you can find there from their website:

Step back into time at the Manatee Village Historical Park. Visit this collection of restored buildings from Manatee County’s settlement history and experience life in Manatee County before the arrival of modern conveniences such as automobiles and electricity. The Manatee Village Historical Park is a joint project of the Manatee County Historical Commission, Manatee County Clerk of Circuit Court, the Manatee County Board of County Commission, and the City of Bradenton.

I decided to paint the beautiful old church there, which dates from 1887 and has housed many special events over its long history. There is currently a restoration process in progress regarding its steeple. I was drawn to its simple, unassuming lines and the fact that it had housed so many happy events over its long history in Bradenton. The shadows on the church are perfect in the afternoon and the palm trees beside it langished in deep shadow against the hot sun in the western sky.

I completed the painting in 2 and a half hours and you can see it yourself at Art Center Manatee until October 30th. I was delighted to receive an honorable mention from judge Bill Farnsworth for my efforts.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

"Carlsbad Morning", 12x24, oil on canvas, Batiquitos Lagoon, Carlsbad California, eucalyptus trees

"Carlsbad Morning", 12x24, oil on canvas

Throughout southern California there are great places to hike. Whenever we visit the area, my son and daughter-in-law, who are avid hikers, introduce us to a new trail. Some of our favorites are Torrey Pines and Batiquitos Lagoon in Carlbad. There are beautiful old eucalyptus trees through out Batiquitos, so I took the opportunity to take some pictures of them since they are my favorite California tree.

The Lagoon boasts plenty of nature trails for bird-watching and hiking and kayak enthusiasts are welcome as well. To learn more about the lagoon , please go here.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

1969, oil on panel, 12x12, Happy days, paintings of the sixties, Chevelle, SS 396, Grease, memories, LA High School, Lansdowne, nostalgia

"1969", 12x12, oil on panel

This was truly a blast from the past.

I found an old picture of myself the summer that I graduated high school, which was..... ummmmm....you guessed it- 1969!

 I was wearing a tie-dyed shirt, culotte shorts and moccasins and sitting atop the SS 396 Super Sport Chevelle of my future husband, along with two friends, Dave and Ruth.

The days were carefree and high school was over. It was "We go together" all over again.

I had fun painting this. Maybe because times are less simple now. Maybe becaue it made me feel young again. And maybe it was just because those happy days were mine and  yours and ours....

Happy and free. (Oh Happy Days)
These days are ours
Share them with me.(Oh Happy Days)
Goodbye grey sky, hello blue,
'cause nothing can hold me when I hold you.
feels so right it can't be wrong,
rockin' and rollin' all week long.

Read more: Happy Days - Happy Days Theme Song Lyrics | MetroLyrics

Here's my shameless reference photo. Yeah it was a little blurry. But it still brought  back those happy days.

Friday, September 19, 2014

"Day's End, Good Harbor Beach", 8x10, oil on wrapped linen, plein air, Cape Ann, Gloucester beaches, impressionism, palette knife art

"Day's End, Good Harbor Beach", 8x10, oil on wrapped linen, plein air

Good Harbor Beach is located in Gloucester, on the North Shore of Massachusetts.  This little plein air painting was done during our recent August trip to Cape Ann, and this was my first chance to post.

Cape Ann is a rocky cape in northeastern Massachusetts on the Atlantic Ocean. It is located approximately 30 miles northeast of Boston and marks the northern limit of Massachusetts Bay. We visit there almost every summer becuase Rockport is so near and dear to my heart. We now have another reason to visit since my youngest son is attending the Harvard Kennedy School in Boston. Yay!

So in addition to visiting with our son and catching the beautiful soft sunlight on Cape Ann, we also made the trek to Orleans, Cape Cod for the American Women Artist's National exhibit.

I was very pleased to have been accepted into this prestigious national show for the second year in a row, and so oveall it was a great trip.

The sky was tinged in purple right before sunset on the August day that I set up my easel at Good Harbor. I hope you enjoy this painting. It has thick paint throughout and epitomizes the simple quaint beauty of this New England seaside town, captured quickly as the light kept fading.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

"Table of Blessings", 24x24 oil on wrapped hardwood, MAryanne Jacobsen art impressionism, al fresco dining, bread and wine


"Table of Blessings", 24x24 oil on wrapped hardwood

This painting was fun and challenging at the same time. I wanted to keep it loose and fresh, so deciding when to call it done was  a little difficult. I still may go back in and work some passages when it is dry. We'll see.

So I went back in and made a couple edits. Overall it looks about the same, but there were a couple subtle issues that you wouldn't be able to see on your monitor that I could see, so I fixed them .  Now it's done and sold. Hurray!

Friday, September 12, 2014

"Pacific Blues", 16x20, oil on panel, paintings of Big Sur, Pacific Ocean impressionist paitnigns of the coast of California


"Pacific Blues", 16x20, oil on panel

Whenever I feel uninspired, I usually turn to photos I've taken during my many trips to California. The very first time I was there we took a very long ride up the coast from Santa Monica all the way up to San Francisco. I can't say I didn't enjoy the ride, though it was long.

Driving along the Pacific coast highway is quite an experience, and I often had to close my eyes as I don't like heights. But whenever my husband was able to convince me to open them and check out the view, I was always rewarded. This scene at Big Sur, is one of my favorites and I've painted it  few times. All of them have sold, so I decided to pull out the photos and do it again.

I listened to a  Linda Ronstadt CD as I painted because I love the way she sings and especially when she sings "Adios". It invariable makes me cry and suspect I'm not the only one.

Got to go clean my paintbrushes, so for now, Adios, amigos.

By the way, this painting is available through Gallery 444, in San Francisco.  Feel free to contact them at PHONE : (415) 434-4477, to inquire about this painting.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

"Rocky Cove", 16x20 , oil on canvas, Cape Ann paintings, seascapes, Rockport, Massachusetts, Impressionism, rocks, Atlantic, Maryanne Jacobsen art

"Rocky Cove", 16x20 , oil on canvas

Sometimes I enjoy painting a scene so much that I can't wait to try it again! In this case, it was the scene overlooking Gap Cove in Rockport that I wanted to try again. I painted it en plein air when I was there a couple weeks ago, and so the scene was fresh in my mind.

Once again I decided to make the pretty house on Gap Head Road my focal point, and I decided to define the rocks a little more carefully than I had done the first time.

I will concede that painting en plein air is challenging because you must work very fast to capture the elements, and retain the original concept even as the light is changing. The benefit, however, is that the artist does not have a chance to mull over decisions regarding color mixing, value, composition- anything! You either nail it or you don't! That is why plein air work can either look incredibly fresh and spontaneous, or else be a disaster!

In the case of the painting that I did that day, I was very happy with it, so I thought it would be fun to try a bigger version. What I noticed was that I found myself overthinking decisions that I had made instantaneously the first time I'd painted the scene. I found myself playing around with the greenery in the foreground to the extent that it made the foliage seem more strained and conspicuous than the first time I'd painted it. I also had too many color choices, whereby I had substantially  limited my palette when I'd painted it that day on location.

In short, I have slowly but surely become an avid proponent of plein air painting, as a result of understanding its benefits. It has taken me 6 years to get comfortable with painting on location, and I will admit that once you get there, painting in the studio is always a little bit of a disappointment. Without the sound of the seagulls screeching in the background, and the waves lapping the rocks, the music that I normally play while painting didn't quite do it for me any more. Without the warm sun playing over my shoulders and the crisp blue sky above me, the mixture of light sources in the studio become almost confusing.

In short, although I was somewhat happy with this painting, I know the first painting was better even though it only took me one hour and this one took me 5 hours. I can't wait until the heat of this Florida summer breaks somewhat, so I can get back outdoors and paint another tiny piece of  God's glorious creation. Thanks for reading.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

"Straitsmouth Cove, Rockport"-plein air, 9x12, oil on panel, Rockport Massachusetts, Cape Ann, New England seascapes, impressionism, rocks, Atlantic Ocean, American Women Artists,Maryanne JAcobsen fine art

"Straitsmouth Cove, Rockport"-plein air,  9x12, oil on panel

I recently attended the American Women Artists Show at the Addison Gallery in Orleans, Massachusetts. Cape Cod is a wonderful place for an art exhibit as there is beauty everywhere and lovely shops and art galleries throughout Cape Cod.

A very special thank-you to Helen Addison, of the Addison Gallery for hosting the AWA show. The exhibit was breathtaking and I was very honored to be included in this prestigious national show for the second consecutive year. The show will run through September 15th, so if you are on the Cape, please stop by and view this magnificent show. There are still many lovely pieces available for purchase, too!

After returning to the Boston area, we spent some time on Cape Ann, in Rockport, long known by impressionist artists for its incredible light and dramatic scenery. My husband and I return here every summer to enjoy the best weather and scenery that New England has to offer!

The weather was more than cooperative this past week and I was able to do some plein air painting every single day. The painting above was done a few days ago at Straitsmouth Cove, right off of Marmion way in Rockport. I was attracted by the beautiful cool blues in the ambient light and used the house on the hill as a focal point.

A perfect plein air morning!

Saturday, August 09, 2014

"Bienvenue", 22x28, oil on wrapped canvas, paintings of France, Alsace windows, window boxes, flowers

"Bienvenue", 22x28, oil on wrapped canvas

Almost 15 years ago, my hubby and I took a wonderful trip to Europe which included time spent in France, Germany and Denmark. One of the highlights of that trip was time spent in the Alsace region of France. I'll never forget the trip up Mont Sainte-Odile to see the dramatic sight of the monastery,  where , as legend has it, Sainte Odile was given sanctuary from a brutal father, who wanted to kill his own daughter because she was blind.

Another highlight of that trip to the Alsace region was La Petite France, a section of the old city of Strasbourg, which is filled with canals reminiscent of Venice, Italy and studded with ancient multi-storied buildings that have stood for centuries in shades of pink, ochre and magenta under hazy skies.

Alsace is a little German or a little French depending on who was currently in control during those years of its schizophrenic history when both countries jockeyed back and forth for control of the area.

This scene that I've painted a few times before depicts a classic Alsace window, framed in colorful wooden shutters with flowers and abundant vines cascading in and out of cheerful chaos.

If you would like information on purchasing "Bienvenue", please contact Gallery 444 at (415) 434-4477 and ask for Desiree or Heidi.

Thanks for allowing me to share my memories of Alsace with you!

Friday, August 01, 2014

"Petal Dance", 10x20, oil on wrapped canvas, impressionism, impasto, palette knife florals, sunflowers

"Petal Dance", 10x20, oil on wrapped canvas

Lots of thick paint in this floral. Please email me at maryannejacobsen@aol.com if you would like more information about this painting.

Please visit my website at Maryanne Jacobsen Fine Art to see more of my original oil paintings.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

"Last of the Peonies", 8x8, oil on board, peonies, orange, pink blooms, impasto, palette knife floral

"Last of the Peonies", 8x8, oil on board

I set up a couple of vases of peonies outdoors last month, with the intention of painting them the next day. Well, the next day never happened because it rained continually for a week.

I did manage to take a photo of the arrangement before the rain completely destroyed al the blooms and I used that photo as a reference for this loose, almost abstract palette knife rendition of the bouquets.

Lots of thick paint in this one. Email me if interested in this painting at maryannejacobsen@aol.com.

Friday, July 18, 2014

"Vixen Hill Springhouse, plein air sketch", 11x14, oil on panel, Chester Springs, Pennsylvania, quaint cottages in Chester County, springhouses, Chester Springs, Yellow springs, stone, fieldstone

"Vixen Hill Springhouse, plein air sketch", 11x14, oil on panel

The last time I stayed at the Vixen Hill Cottage, I took photos of the springhouse in the afternoon light, and painted it when I got home. That was two years ago, and I posted a photo of the painting on my blog here. 

I  recall that the first time I painted that structure, I was struck by how inexperienced I felt mixing the paints for all the earth colors that I saw in the stones.

This time around was much easier and the painting came together much quicker for me, even though it was plein air and completed in its entirety outdoors. What that tells me is that in two years I have grown as an artist, and grown especially in my comfort level of painting on location.

If you look at the photo below, you'll see that I tried to stay true to the colors that I saw in my surroundings, rather than pushing the color as I had done in my earlier attempt.

Am I growing as an artist? That is a question that every good artist will ask himself/herself as time goes by, and although I feel that I've had some major setbacks this year, I do see improvement as well. Whew!

If you are interested in purchasing this plein air sketch, just snd me an email at maryannejacobsen@aol.com.

Thanks for reading!