Saturday, January 4, 2014

New Year Resolutions

Happy New Year and welcome back!
It has been 10 months since my last post and not much has changed.... except for my art, my future, and my attitude. Over the past 10 month, this past semester specifically, I have been striving to bring my art to new heights and illuminate myself with new contemporary knowledge. One of my new year's resolutions is to actively update this blog weekly with links to art I love. You can also find current personal work updates on my new Facebook page which I encourage you all to like!   <--- LIKE ME!

I've also finished the construction of my website with the help of Weebly where I will continue updating the photos of paintings, prints and drawings with better quality duplicates.   <--- CHECK ME OUT!

Vibrations. 48"x48". Oil on canvas.
(The starting point 2014.)

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Life is Anything but Still

Sitting down, slowing down, and observing the still life, I wasn't sure what to expect. I can honestly say I haven't felt as good about a painting as I do about this still life in a long time. I suppose sometimes it is important to go back to your roots and observe instead of having to try to think of a 'creative and original' idea. I also feel my style is beginning to become more developed and hope to explore it further.


Blue Teapot
35 1/8" x 35 7/8"
oil on canvas

Blue Teapot and Hero's Abyss are being shown at Connell Lofts Gallery in downtown Scranton, Pennsylvania for limited time. Come check out the reception from 6-9 on Friday, April 5th!

Inspired by the still life and the looseness it gave me, I started another smaller 18"x24" to practice working on smaller surfaces. It is also something to work on as I prep my newest large surface, 7'x4'. Bye bye squares!.... At least for a little while.

Also, since I've been a bad blogger and haven't posted in a while, here is an updated studio shot although I'll admit I cleaned it up before taking the photo!

Friday, March 15, 2013


Well, the Sita painting like the myth, is now only a story. I wasn't happy with the way it was progressing and decided to cover it up and start fresh and there's no fresher way to start than with the first subject you paint in college, a still life!

This is still in progress, more updates to come!

Sunday, February 24, 2013


This semester I am taking a mythology class... and it is kicking my behind! But fortunately it is serving as an artistic springboard as I learn about the stories, lessons and time periods.

I recently decided to use surfaces only made by myself so I've been spending a lot of time in the wood shop. This 3'x3' canvas was built and stretched solely by me.

In mythology class, we recently read the Ramayana, an Indian myth. In brief summary, a king is granted four sons and one, Rama, is the reincarnate of God and is set to be future king. Before Rama is to be crowned, one of the King's three wives requests to have Rama exiled for 14 years. While Rama and his wife Sita are gone, Sita is abducted and eventually saved. Rama then makes her prove her purity by having her walk through fire multiple times and finds she is pure. She gets pregnant and all the villagers of Rama's kingdom which he rightfully takes over after the exile think Sita is pregnant with her abductor's baby and lose respect for Rama for not 'handling' his wife. In order to remain firm, Rama orders his brother to leave Sita in the forest.

The canvases I have been building are too deep for the modern easels and tend to totter so I began using this traditional, old, wooden easel.

After reading a version of the myth, we watched a documentary from Sita's point of view which inspired my current painting with undertones of the oppression of women.

I loosely established a pose from previous drawings but found it to be compositionally boring and decided to blend to make a more interesting background to what was to come.

After recomposing the piece, I began layering strokes of color and value keeping in mind Sita's characteristics and feelings. The majority of the colors used are on the cool side giving the piece a bit more solemn. The red in the back is meant to symbolize the underlying anger of being sent away as well as anger at herself for not doing more. As I continue to layer, I plan to bring the symbolism more to the forefront.

As I continued, I went in with a smaller brush to start integrating the figure and space more abstractly. 
I am still currently working on this painting.

Thursday, February 14, 2013


Bringing some of my new style choices into my larger painting, I referenced my studies based off of William Etty's, Hero and Leander in order to create something only subtly figurative.

Hero is a priestess of Aphrodite and every night her lover Leander swims across the sea to be with her. Sadly, one night Leander drowns and Etty's painting portrays the cruel sorrow. My version is more so about the abyss of grief as well as the masking of true feelings. I chose to solely take Hero's pose and morph it slightly to benefit composition. Although in it's earlier stage, the figure is seen filled with negative emotions, it later becomes more colorful and moving which hides the sadness of the story, masks the grief. I'm also playing with the push and pull of spaces and layering.

Sigmar Polke often utilizes layering and line over space.

Hero's Abyss
oil on canvas

Higher quality photos will be featured on which is currently under construction and will be hitting the web very soon!

A new Impression...

This semester I am taking a Art in the Modern Era class in which we're discussing the rejection of modern art and it's influences. I find myself particularly drawn to impressionist, post impressionist, and expressionist artwork.

Vincent Van Gogh's Starry Night and Edvard Munch's original The Sick Child, inspired some of my recent stylistic changes. With Georges Seurat's techniques of multiple colors with in one color, the artists use bold strokes to create shape and movement as well as interesting color.

I started with a quick figure head study on a 1'x1' piece of birch wood, primed with Kilz Oil Primer, painted on with a full figure, then covered up for a new painting which resulted in a fresh 30 minute face. I tried to bring the uninhibitedness of the first study into the second larger figure of 2'x4' birch also primed. I previously preferred to use a highly saturated colorful palette but am transitioning into still colorful but also muted tones.

Getting back in the groove.

My most recent project was a challenge in more ways than one. Working with a larger 5'x5' canvas, a foreign texture to my typical works, and coming back from a relaxing break from being in the studio everyday, proved to be the ingredients to a evolutionary painting that is breaking the boundaries of my previous style. 

I built and stretched the canvas myself out of pine and linen. In the priming process, I watered down the gesso to not only seal the surface before the oil but to act as a glue to cover the surface in rippled texture except for some areas that were left bare or ripped. (I used the pages of the Jerry's Artarama Catalog.)

Once the surface was dry, I threw on a underpainting to emphasize the texture and simplify the surface from the print. I started this painting shortly after doing gouache studies of statues such as Antonio Canova's, Cupid and Psyche. It not only has an intriguing composition of an 'X' and the circling of arms toward the middle, but Cupid's wings bring this sense of floating as if truly pulling up the statue.

Unfortunately, I was uninspired and unhappy with the first of Cupid and Psyche so I covered the canvas in blue which brought on different tones and a black light type of effect. Frustrated further by the piece, I went about it abstractly, wiping away some of the blue to see undercoats and creating different movements and divisions of space. 

PS. Happy Valentines/Friendship Day!