Featured Artist: Michael Clark!

Along the Lake by Michael Clark

Along the Lake by Michael Clark  16×24″  Oil

A fantastic use of color that really makes the light shine! (LOVE that green!) I think the abstractness of the grass is nice against the shapes in the water. The reflections are beautiful!

Ranch Near Fruita by Michael Clark

Ranch Near Fruita by Michael Clark  16X20″  Oil

Wonderful shapes, colors, distance, clouds – very nice!

Read a bit about Michael, from his website! If you have a minute read through Michael’s bio. I love it when an artist mentions mentors, fellow artists, who they’ve taken workshops from, etc. It helps you to relate to their work as an artist.

Michael Clark is a painter focused on capturing the world around him. From summer afternoons by the beach to evening sunsets in the mountains, Michael travels all over to capture these effects on canvas. 

Raised in Michigan, Michael moved to Texas after receiving his BFA from Kendall College of Art Design. While in Texas Michael continued with his focus on landscape painting exhibiting his work in several galleries in Michigan and Texas. He also traveled extensively through the U.S. painting en plein air. In the summer of 2010 he took an extended trip through the western states spending a month residing and painting in  Hood River, Oregon. That trip resulted in over 50 plein air works painted in states from  Washington to Colorado. 

After the passing of his father Michael decided it was time to take his passion to another level and set off on a journey to study with some of the best artists in the country. That journey led him to Chicago for a summer at the prestigious Palette and Chisel Academy of Fine Art.  After  the intense study in Chicago (painting a minimum of two head studies a day) he decided to move to  Denver, Colorado. He chose Denver for its closeness to nature and the access to study with some of the finest painters in the country. 

Michael currently is a class monitor for master painter, Joshua Fallik, at the Art Students League of Denver where he continues his studies in painting and drawing. He is inspired by artists such as John Singer Sargent, Joaquin Sorolla, Rembrandt, Nicolai Fechin and the many of the Russian Impressionist.  He also is influenced by many contemporary painters like Richard Schmid, Skip Whitcomb, David Leffel, Clayton Beck III, Dan McCaw and Quang Ho. 

 Michael is the back to back Best of Show winner at the Paint the Town competition in Marble Falls, Texas and has won several other awards and honorable mentions. He is an associate member of the Oil Painters of America and a member of the American Impressionist Society. 

All images via MichaelClarkFineArt.com, used with permission…

Images are not for reproduction, they are property of the artist.

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Stunning sunset colors – Key West style!




Those colors, wow!

This is sunset – Key West, FL.

Catch you back here tomorrow!

The year before we discovered Maine…

San Fran 2005

I like photos that don’t show an entire scene. One that shows a cool element of a location. This photo was taken in San Francisco in 2005, TYBWDM. (The year before we discovered Maine). We haven’t been back. We had gone to San Fran in 2003 – 2005, then thought lets switch between east coast and west coast. So we headed to Maine and that was the end of that!

I love this cool window with the fire escape. San Fran is a great city, so much to do and see, and the weather… wow!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Featured Artist: Matt Story – Show at Robert Lange Studios!

Blue Roll Reach by Matt Story 48x48" Oil

Blue Roll Reach by Matt Story  48×48″  Oil  |  Robert Lange Studios

Robert Lange Studios is a gallery in Charleston, SC that is not to be missed. They are cutting edge and display the most amazing, jaw-dropping artists. Matt Story is no exception. They are featuring a show that runs through February 26, 2016 for him, and it’s going to be fabulous! Matt is one talented guy. His paintings are stunning. His perspective is wonderful. Colors are dramatic and make you not want to look away. How??? Wow!

This painting Blue Roll Reach hit me. Those colors! The bubbles, reflections, and movement is amazing. I cannot imagine the amount of  difficulty involved just drawing a figure in that position!

Pink Top Swim To by Matt Story 36x36" Oil/Robert Lange Studios

Pink Top Swim To by Matt Story  36×36″  Oil  | Robert Lange Studios

These reflections are mind boggling! Read Matt’s blog to see the process of photographing, etc. Fascinating! I love reading about Matt, he loves painting, that much is for sure, it’s in his blood – and it shows!

If you’re in the Charleston, SC area, be sure to stop in to check out this show!

Info from Robert Lange Studios:

Robert Lange Studios upcoming exhibit, Water, features the work of the contemporary painter Matt Story. Water, as its title suggests, is an entertaining collection of underwater figurative paintings. The work will hang until February 26 and can be seen daily from 11-5pm.  
Story, currently located in New York, has become recognized for his large scale underwater paintings and his work is enthusiastically collected throughout the United States and Europe.  In the mid-2013 Story began visiting the Charleston area and now in 2016 Robert Lange Studios is excited to have his work return to the city.

Story says, “I try to paint contemporary life as to capture crystals of pristine memory that we all share but never describe to one another.  Each composition uses the gesture of figure or setting to evoke a platonic form, an archetypal notion, a distilled essence, that thing that lasts beyond the moment.”

Story’s realist, bordering on hyper-realist, style gives his figurative works a strong vibrancy but it is not the technique, as much as the subject matter, that sets Story apart. Each painting depicts casually beautiful women submerged beneath the surface.  It is evident that the steps needed to capturing these images are a large part of the artists process.

Read a bit about Matt from Robert Lange Studios website:

Matt Story studied art from an early age and demonstrated a unique skill for rendering verisimilitude, or hyper-realism.  “I was lauded for ‘photo-realistic’ technique, but I was never after that, really, after what a camera impartially sees, because there’s so much more there, captured only by the human filter of memory.  We all posses these invisible imprints, through experience and living, but often its only artists who can play it back for us, to remind us.  The paint surface needs to be a mirror for the viewer, reflecting back not his or her superficial self, but a deep shared humanness.  This is the essence of looking at a piece that’s totally unfamiliar to you and yet, being awed with a sense of recognition.   Your reactions, those memories and feelings are uniquely yours but you’re suddenly filled with a sense that, you share them, at least with the artist, but probably even with everyone else.  That of course is art at its best: the artist, sometimes doesn’t even know what he’s doing because he’s a conduit of his or her own collective awareness.”

Story worked as a technical illustrator and graphic artist from his early teens, and studied art in the United States and Western Europe.  After graduating from U.C.L.A. he worked extensively throughout North America in film and television production.  “The collaboration drove me crazy at some point.  Of course, the isolation in the studio can be challenging too, but it suits me far better.  In fact, I’m filled with a melancholy at the end of the day and I can hardly wait to rise early and launch into the studio (to the chagrin of my family).”
Story has worked for over twenty years from his studio in Los Angeles but in mid-2013 began traveling with his wife, first with a long hiatus on the Isle of Palms near Charleston, South Carolina, and recently a long stint near Santa Fe, New Mexico where he paints today, often twelve or more hours a day and seven days a week. His method of oil painting on canvas and panel closely resembles the classical method, used for centuries by masters such as Titian and Caravaggio, two of Story’s heroes, fastidiously building up thin glazes, painting “fat over lean” with traditional materials. His work is included in private and corporate collections in the United States, Europe and Asia.

Please visit www.robertlangestudios.com or call for more information 843.805.8052.

All images via RobertLangeStudios.com, used with permission…

Images are not for reproduction, they are property of the artist.

Catch you back here tomorrow!

House Plan: W331612R from Architectural Designs!

HP Plan W33161ZR Architectural Designs

Plan W33161ZR from Architectural Designs! Wow, is this a wonderful old world Florida plan! This is a net zero plan with an L-shaped lanai. For those of you wondering what a lanai is, it’s basically a covered porch, which helps keep out the elements, and in sunny climates helps keep the house cooler by reducing the amount of direct sun streaming through the windows. Lanai’s are coveted spaces used for entertaining, relaxing, just like another living space, but outdoors. The back of this plan is FABULOUS, I urge you to check it out (click on the link above to see more photos and details).

HP Plan W33161ZR Architectural Designs MAIN

You enter the house from a nice entry porch, then walk into the Great Room and Kitchen areas. Nice open wonderful areas with plenty of room! Down a hallway you will pass two Guest rooms, each with their own Guest Bath, then at the end of the house is the Master Bedroom/Bathroom. On the way to the garage is a Powder Room, Utility Room and Storage (YES!!). The stairs for the Guest Room are located near the garage, which is so nice!

Did you notice the built in dressers in the Master Closet? What a nice touch! As is the WALK-IN PANTRY! ❤️

Changes we would make to suite our needs: I would change Guest Bedroom 1 into a reading room, study or equivalent. If possible I would make Guest Bath 1 into the Utility Room with washer/dryer. I would take the Utility Room near the Garage, and make that a nice mud room with storage, or expand the Storage space (I love that they include a place for storage – it’s something we all need!) – It’s fun to think of changes I would make… of course I could easily live in it just as it is.

HP Plan W33161ZR Architectural Designs

Can I say… I love a Guest Suite?!!  What a great space. It’s a large space, with closets, storage, a Guest Bath, what more could you ask for? Also nice as an office or studio!

All images via ArchitecturalDesigns.com, used with permission…


Catch you back here tomorrow!

Featured Artist: Tracy Yarbrough!

Life is Good Today by Tracy Yarbrough

Life is Good Today by Tracy Yarbrough

Tracy Yarbrough is an artist from the Nashville, TN area. She has some fun paintings that are sure to put a smile on your face. I like the abstract quality of this one, the “drips” which I think add to the painting and the wonderful happy colors. Check them out, she has a great website!

Read a bit about Tracy, from her website:

Creating art that is colorful and expressive, I hope to share some happiness with the viewer. I have fun painting and I want it that to come across in my artwork. 

Using acrylics and sometimes collage, I layer texture, color and line intuitively to create my paintings. I like to use color in an expressive way.  I often paint over old paintings to create something entirely new.  The layers of collage, texture and paint underneath my paintings are similar to ourselves, there are many layers and some secrets are hidden. 

My recent abstract landscapes are inspired by… the beach and the beauty of the where the land and sky meet. the joy of just being.  unplugging and enjoying nature.

Note: I have changed the way I feature artists that submit via the submission form on my website, instead of calling that post an “Artist to Watch”, I am keeping it as “Featured Artist” to lessen confusion. I will try to thank those who submitted. Most of my featured artist posts I run across are artists that I contact, whether it be word of mouth, Facebook, Instagram, a gallery or a slew of other ways. On occasion I will feature artists who submit to me – what a treat to find an artist I could have otherwise missed! Thank you  Tracy, for submitting your work!

All images via chick-pea-studio.com (Tracy’s website), used with permission…

Images are not for reproduction, they are property of the artist.

PS to those who receive this post via email: Yesterday I inadvertently mentioned a before and after photo. Oops! I had changed my thought process part way through the post and didn’t delete that line. If you ever see something that doesn’t make sense, please check my site (you can just click on the title in the email and it will take you there) – chances are corrections have been made. I despise mistakes, but they happen, ugh!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Paintings… and frames!

Gallery wall

Artists: (From top left to right): Dan Corey, Alison Hill, Dan Corey (Middle row): Tim Bell, Tim Bell, Robert Abele, Tim Bell, Tim Bell, (Bottom row) Bjorn Runquist, David Kasman

We have got a lot of paintings. Wonderful paintings. We have so many that we have started to hang them gallery style on a few walls (it’s either that or store them, and we just cannot do that). The frames became too prominent. We wanted to see more of the paintings, less of the frames. So on four we switched to floaters… I know that those of you who are traditional might want to keep the frame, but for those of us who can go both traditional or a bit more modern we were all in for the switch.

This is an example of a lot of frames, too many for my eyes… we have since reconfigured this wall, and there is one large abstract 60×60″ painting by Carol Bass. Some of these paintings have come out of the frames entirely, and I like the look of them hanging with no frame. I like it a lot! Two on this wall have been put into floater frames (MORE ON THAT NEXT WEEK).

What do you think about floater frames? Is there ever a time when there is just too much frame for you? I know there have been problems getting frames off and on. We found some great floaters at Frankenframe!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

PS, this post was corrected about 6:30AM, I inadvertently mentioned a before and after photo… Oops! 😳 More on this topic next Tuesday!

Next week: Comparison of painting in regular frame vs. floater frame

Following week: A before and after shot of the wall shown above. One as a gallery wall, another with one large painting… We still have both throughout the house.

Featured Artist: Derek Gollaher!

Derek Gollaher painting

White Sand Beach by Derek Gollaher   24×30″   Oil on Canvas

This painting grabbed me right away. I am drawn to paintings that have a dark, dark, if you know what I mean. Not just close to dark, but really dark, look how the deep shade of the water makes the sand that much more stunning! I love how the light is hitting this painting. Really nice… those shadows in the sand… sweet!

Interior painting by Derek Gollaher

Sister by Derek Gollaher   22×28″   Oil on Canvas

This style seems a bit different, and I like it just as much. He captured this woman so perfectly. I have a thing for interiors, and not everyone can pull them off, but Derek did a great job capturing the essence of this scene!

Read a bit about Derek, and be sure to check out his Facebook Page (“Derek Gollaher”)!

Derek Gollaher is a contemporary realist painter. He was born in Fresno, California in 1982. Knowing at a very young age that he wanted to be an artist. He worked with many mediums in the pursuit to find his calling as a fine artist.
Now primarily working with oil on canvas, he finds the most enjoyment in painting figurative & portrait works. He currently lives in Farmington, Missouri where he is drawn in by the areas rich history & endless subject matters.
His perspective allows him to capture the slightest gestures & emotions of the human figure. Being entirely self taught in oil painting, he goes to early nineteenth century painters for insight & inspiration.
About his work Derek has said ”In my paintings I simply try to represent the omitted beauty that is right in front of us.”

All images via Derek Gollaher, used with permission…

Images are not for reproduction, they are property of the artist.

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Stunning architecture – The Cathedral of St. John the Baptist – Charleston, SC!

Cathedral of St. John the Baptist - from the back

Rear view of church

This is such a stunning Catholic church. The inside commands attention. It is full of history. The architecture is so beautiful. This is a photo from the BACK of the church. Just look at that golden light! Stunning.

The history is fascinating, for example, the church originally cost $103,00 to build… in the early 1850’s! Read more about this church’s history

Catch you back here tomorrow!

A bit of color in the winter…

Trader Joe's - Photo from 2013

It’s nice to have a bit of color in the winter. There is just nothing like fresh flowers. I will often pick up a small bunch of tulips, lily’s or sunflowers if they look happy and like they will last a while. Tulips usually last about a week, getting very dramatic towards the end.

Treat yourself… or even better, someone else!

Catch you back here tomorrow!