It was great to be back in Maui and really hard to say goodbye. It’s a beautiful place filled with the nicest of people. I probably should’ve posted some while I was there but I was trying really hard to get some good work done and for the most part didn’t start getting my mojo until the 3rd day of the event. Though I started off with a successful first quickdraw, a painting that I could have sold 10 times for some mysterious reason (the beach scene), the next couple of days were filled with doubt and struggle. However if you have to struggle with a painting, why not struggle in Hawaii? This first painting almost had me going home… but I was told by many that they liked the fresh perspective on the thing. I saw this kid on the rock and he had such a great pose that I had to get him in there somehow, but knowing how kids tend to move about like colts, I took a picture and went on trying to figure out how to compose the thing. The idea was to put the main focus at the bottom and have a lot of space above. I chased the reflections around for about 2 hours… we had three to complete it and get it into a frame and up to the gallery. By the way, all these pics are from my iphone so the quality is not up to my usual standards but I have to download my images from the camera still.
Next up was the second reasonable painting produced after 3 days of dredge. This is a really bad shot and will repost it as soon as I get better shots. This one started wednesday morning and finished thursday morning, fortunately the light held out for the second day. I don’t usually go for the big open vistas but I figured an approach other than large thing in the foreground and small things in the background was in order here. Those mountains were just plain majestic.. but the shadows were a bear, they kept changing color a little more light bouncing around or a little less made it hard to keep them simple.
The color in this pic is off but you get the idea. It’s a 16×20. Then there was this 12×16 beach scene and while painting it, I felt that I really figured something out about painting rocks, big simple shapes with subtle color modulation rather than trying to chase the form of the thing… I think I got that one from Frederic Waugh, whom I’ve mentioned before. Usually rocks give me fits but in this case it went a bit easier. I actually felt it was entirely successful until I saw it again and then I didn’t but on third consideration I think it is. I’m so fickle. It’s a lot harder mentally to be an artist than most people realize.
Up next is the second quickdraw where a model was provided, a lovely, strong, Hawaiian girl with a kind of pride that came out in her look. I was painting next to Scott Burdick and if you know who he is you know how daunting that can be. He is a great portrait painter who focused on her face, I went more for a Visit Maui/Hawaiian pride poster kind of thing. I liked it and felt it held up and was a good likeness to boot.
Then came a painting of a tomato farm and palm nursery and I’m gonna go out on a limb and say pot farm judging by the characters who worked there. This scene is more of what I like, lots of angles and lots of stuff and foreground and background bouncing off one another. I felt pretty good about it, at least it had a narrative to it and was more than pretty stuff.
One of the many highlights was getting to paint with all of my friends especially Randy Sexton who is just plain fun to hang with… we laugh a lot and maybe drink too much now and again but in addition to being a great painter, he’s a great friend. The paintings submitted this year were some of the best I’ve seen there overall, Mike Carrol, Colin Page, Scott Burdick, Mr. Sexton, Ronaldo Macedo and so many others did outstanding work. It’s always an honor to be included in the bunch.
Overall I did 14 paintings but only 5 or 6 were show worthy and the ones that didn’t sell (all but one) stayed there at the gallery. The rest of the dookie came back with me for a revisit once I get over the travel lag and get some more gallery work done. Coming up next week is the Wekiva paintout where at the very least I’ll get a lot of Florida work done for my galleries here.