Archive for April, 2012

Especially for Mother’s Day

April 30, 2012

Today’s painting is for my Mother’s Day eBay auction. It’s hard to believe that special day we honor all of the loving, hard working moms in our lives is right around the corner on May 13. My auction ends on May 6 leaving plenty of time to ship the art to arrive for the big day.

CLICK HERE to go directly to the eBay auction.

The idea was sparked by the thought of designing a tile for over the door that said “MOM”.  I began to draw and came up with this design.

After completing the wall and red door I turn my attention to the tile. The first step is to paint the light and shadow on the white surface. Then I begin drawing the design with a fine liner brush dipped in a mix of Pthalo Blue + White. A lighter shade of the mix is used for the part of the design on the sunlit portions of the tile. I brace against the mahl stick in order to steady my hand as I draw the mother bird and her babies.

I made a few changes from the sketch as I worked on the tile. I decided to leave the wings off of the baby birds, making them look more immature. Then I let the mother carry food for her young in her beak. I felt this would add to the “motherhood” theme. To see any of these pictures larger just click on the image.

The original plan was to have White Spanish Jasmine hanging over the door and tile. But the white flowers would offer no contrast with the tile so I changed the color of the blooms to magenta. You can see my notation on the sketch at the top left of the page. Pink Hollyhocks provide a happy touch by the door.

Celebration of Love         19″ x 16″          Original Oil Painting

Let the cheery red door with Hollyhocks and Daylilies bring that exceptional mother in your life joy for years to come, every time she looks at it on her wall. Say “You mean so much to me” with a gift of the original oil painting, Celebration of Love. I will be happy to personalize the back of the painting for you. Just let me know as soon as you win so I can ship it in time to arrive for Mother’s Day.

Framed in our Senkarik White Signature Frame the outer dimension of Celebration of Love is 19 inches tall and 16 inches wide. The size of the painted image is 14 1/2 inches tall by 11 1/2 inches wide. Celebration of Love is ready to put up on your special mother’s wall, we even provide the hanger and nail. A Senkarik original oil painting this size sells in our galleries for $890. The auction bidding starts at 1 cent. That’s right, one penny. To say Happy Mother’s Day we are giving FREE SHIPPING, anywhere in the continental United States, to the winner.

CLICK HERE to go to my eBay auction.

The auction ends Sunday, May 6 at 8 PM in Texas. That’s Central Daylight Savings Time.  So have some fun with your Mother’s Day shopping this year. HAPPY BIDDING. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik

Around Our Garden

April 27, 2012

The Clematis are blooming. Don’t the white ones remind you of Van Gogh’s The Starry Night? They are intermingled with Confederate Jasmine, the fragrance of which fills our back patio.

The Salvia and Poppies along the walkway to the back patio are in full flower. Dusty Miller is in the background. Molly, our rescue kitty, is my companion in the garden. She keeps watch as I work and yesterday caught a pesky little gopher!

This is the view of the back patio from our bedroom. Confederate Jasmine covers the corner of the house in the upper left and the arch in the distance is the Rose Arbor. If you would like to see any of these pictures larger just click on the image. Thanks for taking a little walk through the garden with me. Hope to see you again soon. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik

To receive an email every time I publish a new post please feel free to subscribe to my blog. CLICK THIS LINK and scroll to the upper right side of the page. You will see a heading EMAIL SUBSCRIPTIONS. Just enter your email address and click the button “Sign me up!”  It’s easy.

Jack’s Newest Book “MARKETING ART ON eBAY” is Now Available

April 25, 2012

Jack’s newest book is HOT off the press! The Mystique of Marketing Art on eBay is now available.

Best of all the publisher is offering our readers a surprise savings until Friday, April 27 at 11:59 PM. This is a bit complicated but here is how you find out how much you will save. First CLICK HERE to go to LULU.com. On the homepage there will be the code for a savings coupon that you can use at checkout. Write that code down, you will need it when you checkout.  Then the next step is to CLICK HERE and all of Jack’s Art Marketing books will come up, there are two pages. With the exception of Mystique of Marketing Art on eBay all of them are available in paperbook or download format.  Pick out what you would like to purchase and follow the prompts to checkout. This savings coupon is good until the 27th of April but please be aware that you can only use the code once.

Lulu.com is also offering a different coupon to save 20% on my book, BREATHTAKING RETREAT: Making a Painting. I show the step by step process of making a 6 foot by 8 foot oil painting of the picturesque Portofino Harbor in Italy. Filled with painting techniques and useful tips on setting up a studio, this is a complete oil painting workshop, even revealing the one tool an artist CAN NOT afford to be without. When you check out just use the code BESTMOM305 to receive your 20% savings. The offer is good until Mother’s day, May 13, 2012 at 11:59 PM. Like the other offer this coupon can only be used once per account.

CLICK HERE to order BREATHTAKING RETREAT: Making a Painting

We are so glad to be able to pass these savings on to you. Please remember that the first offer is only good through Friday night, April 27. Hugs, Miki Senkarik

A Matching Set

April 23, 2012

Seems I’ve been on a Sunflower kick lately, today I’m working on some you can WEAR! A matching cap and tee-shirt for my eBay auction. First let’s paint the cap. To begin with alkyd oil paints are used to draw in the centers of the flowers along with light outlines of the foliage. You can click on the picture to see this enlarged. Then the sunny yellow petals are painted. After the broad leaves are finished I sign the cap along the brim.

AND…. the cap is  ready to wear. Or, it will be when the auction is over, the alkyd oil paints will be dry by then.

To go to the eBay auction for the Sunflower Cap titled Cheerful Pair CLICK HERE.

On to the Tee-Shirt. To start a sketch is made of the sunflower design.

Then a blank canvas is inserted inside the Tee and the edges are wrapped with shrink-wrap for ease of handling. I can touch the sides and don’t have to worry about messing up the white. I follow the same procedure used on the cap. The centers are indicated and a soft outline of the stems and foliage is made. Starting to work on the flowers I realized I really needed to paint the leaves first. Some of the yellow blossoms will overlap the foliage underneath.

While painting the foliage I decided to add more leaves at the bottom of the design to balance out the flowers.

The finished Tee is on the left. All of my Wearable Art products include an Official Certificate with our Code of Authenticity. Just like my large oil paintings every garment is completely original so each one has its own individual title.

CLICK HERE to go to the auction for the Tee-Shirt, Dance in the Sun.

Bidding begins at a penny! The auctions end at 6 and 6:05 PM Pacific Time on Sunday April 29. Bid on both and wear the pair! HAVE FUN. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik

Fun Surprises

April 21, 2012

Yesterday was full of fun surprises. First FedEx showed up with a large package. When I brought it inside I asked Jack, “Did you order something from 2 Die 4?” He just shook his head in puzzlement. So I opened the note on the outside and exclaimed, “Oh, that Paul and Nancy. They’re a mess!” Remember the couple who commissioned me to paint After the Rain? That’s them. Nestled in the box were the cutest pair of gnomes. They look just like Jack and me!

They’ve adopted us and taken up residence by the front door of the studio. If you would like to enlarge any of these pictures just click on the image.

Then we received this wildflower photo from Linda Sioux Henley, an artist friend of ours. Just this month Linda Sioux was given a Women in the Arts Recognition Award by the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution. We are so proud of her. Doesn’t it look like the yellow flowers are a golden ocean wave that has poured over the fence and knocked it down? Now, how cool is that?

Our Rose arbor is in full bloom. The Peggy Martin Roses are a strain that survived Hurricane Katrina after being submerged under flood waters for a week. The nice thing is they have no thorns so pruning is not such a prickly affair. This arbor is also made of a 20 foot length of bull fence that is arched over and anchored to steel fence posts. That’s a Sea Grape in the foreground with Canna Lilies behind. A few “wild” Red Corn Poppies have infiltrated the Canna Lily bed. Thank you for visiting our studio today, I hope those precious little gnomes gave you a proper welcome. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik

Hill Country Overlook – the Finishing Steps

April 20, 2012

Final details have been added to the Wisteria so now I begin working on the bed of Canna Lilies behind the fountain. The foliage provides a dark backdrop for the bubbling fountain. The broad leaves are blocked in with a large Bright brush.

Magenta flowers bloom on the tall stalks of the Cannas. Then the fountain is painted with mixtures of Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson + a green made of Pthalo Blue + Orange + White. MUD (Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson) is added to darken the shadow areas.

A rim of Ultramarine Blue + White has been added on the shadow side of the bowls of the fountain. This cool edge helps to visually “round” them. Next the Cosmos at the base of the fountain are blocked in, Flowers first, Foliage last.

Geraniums, some of my favorites flowers, are planted in the containers on the wall and by the door. Going back to the fountain the splashing water is lightly dragged, straight down, over the bowls and base. I want the brush to skip over the paint of the structure so a little of it shows through the White, giving the water a transparent look.

Hill Country Overlook    30″ x 36″     Original Oil Painting

Rose of Sharon fills the bed at the base of the wall on the left and a whimsical tile brings a burst of cheeriness by the front door. I’m ready to sit on the edge of the fountain, listen to the babbling water and enjoy the view of the Texas landscape in the distance. How ’bout you? Please remember, if you would like to see any of the pictures larger just click on the image. Have a super day. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik

To receive an email every time I publish a new post please feel free to subscribe to my blog. CLICK THIS LINK and scroll to the upper right side of the page. You will see a heading EMAIL SUBSCRIPTIONS. Just enter your email address and click the button “Sign me up!”  It’s easy.

Hill Country Overlook Continued……….

April 19, 2012

The shadows on the terra-cotta tile floor are blocked in with several combinations of MUD (Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson) + Cadmium Orange. Colors left over from the door and Wisteria are added into the dark area to imply reflections shimmering in the wet tile.

Perspective lines are drawn freehand into the wet paint of the floor. I can’t use the mahl stick here, it would limit the movement of my arm and prevent me from making a smooth, straight line. You can click on the image to view an enlargement.

While the tile floor is still wet I sign the painting, bracing my hand against the frame. I don’t wait until the piece is finished, it would be too difficult to make my signature over the bumpy, semi-dry paint. The blue painter’s tape covers our White Senkarik Signature Frame, it will be pulled off when Hill Country Overlook is finished, leaving a nice clean edge.

The dark shadow across the front of the courtyard floor acts as a “Threshold”. The sunlit area behind the dark foreground draws the viewer’s gaze over the shadow. Much like stepping over the “Threshold” to go through a doorway. The sunny landscape beyond the dark adobe wall and Wisteria uses the same technique; the light in back of the dark is planned to pull you into the distance. This will be much more apparent when the piece is finished. Have a wonderful day and I hope to see you again soon. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik

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Hill Country Overlook #1

April 18, 2012

First of all, Jack has a new article on Fine Art Studio Online. CLICK HERE to read Masterpiece.

Fredericksburg Art Gallery has sold a couple of pieces so I need to get to work replacing them. The main elements are drawn up on the canvas with an oil wash made of Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson + a liberal amount of Liquin. To see any of the pictures larger just click on the image.

You can see I had to make some drawing adjustments. The arched opening and gate were a little too tall, so they had to be lowered. Now for the vignette view through the gate. The courtyard dwelling overlooks a clear stream in the Texas Hill Country. The distant scene is painted with cool, muted colors so it will fall back. A field of Bluebonnets, our Texas State Flower, is added beside the limestone rocks lining the stream.

This is one of our favorite stages of my “through the door” paintings. Jack and I just think they look so cool when the background is painted and the rest of the piece is just sketched in.

The building is blocked in with mixes of different proportions of Cadmium Orange + Ultramarine Blue + White. MUD (Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson) is added to darken the shadow areas. Dioxazine Purple is used for the Wisteria. This is one of those special colors I use occasionally, it makes a lovely purple that I’m unable to mix with our Double Primary Palette.

The bright intensity of the Pthalo Blue + White used for  the door and gate make the background begin to “Fall Back.” This is one of those simple but very important rules in painting: Intense Colors Come Forward, Muted Colors Fall Back. Thank you for visiting the studio today. Hope you will come back tomorrow and follow the progress of Hill Country Overlook. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik

To receive an email every time I publish a new post please feel free to subscribe to my blog. CLICK THIS LINK and scroll to the upper right side of the page. You will see a heading EMAIL SUBSCRIPTIONS. Just enter your email address and click the button “Sign me up!”  It’s easy.

Dreams of Sunflowers

April 16, 2012

Don’t you just love Sunflowers? I certainly do. Come travel with me to Provence to paint a field of these cheerful flowers. I’ve sketched up the initial drawing on the left above. On the right paint application begins with the sky. I’ve decided to make a clear blue cloudless sky, so typical of a summer day in the south of France. Moving forward the hills are painted. The most distant one is bluer so it will fall back. Purple and yellow are complimentary colors, across from one another on the color wheel. Placing a field of purple Lavender behind the yellow Sunflowers will make them appear more intense. You may click on any of the images to view them larger.

CLICK HERE to go directly to my eBay auction.

Lovely old stone villas dot the Provence landscape. Bracing against the mahl stick to steady my hand the details of the ancient building are delineated. Wouldn’t you just love to live here surrounded by colorful fields of flowers?

The Sunflowers at the back of the field are blocked in with a cooler shade of Cadmium Yellow + Alizarin Crimson + Ultramarine Blue + White. Moving forward Cadmium Yellow + Cadmium Orange and Cadmium Yellow + Hansa Lemon Yellow are used. This gives a variation of color across the area, cooler in the back and warmer in the front. After the rock wall in the lower left corner is painted I begin to work the broad leaves of the Sunflower foliage around the yellow, shaping the happy blossoms.

Centers are added, larger in the front of the field and then becoming increasingly smaller as they recede. This helps to give the illusion of depth. The finishing touch is to add the highlights on the petals using the corner of a #10 Bright Brush.

Dreams of Sunflowers    16″ x 19″    Original Oil Painting

Have you ever flipped through a magazine only to be stopped by a panorama of a field of sunflowers? Has your heart been captured by the golden heads lazily following the sun across the sky? Envision yourself standing here in the warm sunlight, drinking in the view as the gentle breeze brushes against your face. Bring a touch of the sunshine, along with some fragrant Lavender and a cascade of Red Poppies, into your home with Dreams of Sunflowers.

Framed in our Senkarik White Signature Frame the outer dimension of Dreams of Sunflowers is 16 inches tall and 19 inches wide. The size of the painted image is 11 1/2 inches tall by 14 1/2 inches wide. Dreams of Sunflowers is ready to put up on your wall, we even provide the hanger and nail. A Senkarik original oil painting this size sells in our galleries for $890. The auction bidding starts at 1 cent. That’s right, one penny. To say Thank You we are giving FREE SHIPPING, anywhere in the continental United States, to the winner.

CLICK HERE to go to my eBay auction.

The auction ends Sunday, April 22 at 8 PM in Texas. That’s Central Daylight Savings Time.  So have some fun and visit my auction on eBay. HAPPY BIDDING. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik

Chili View

April 15, 2012

Another piece for Santa Fe is on my easel. Seems like almost everyone who visits “The City Different” falls in love with the Chili Ristras. When I sketched up the design on my canvas the window area was completely covered with a thin washes of Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson + Liquin and Ultramarine Blue + Liquin.  I made sure to leave areas of transparency so when the window sash is painted the uneven dark color makes it appear if there are objects inside the room. The adobe wall is painted with mixes of various combinations of Ultramarine Blue + Cadmium Orange + White. A bit of Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson is added for the shadow areas. With the draping vines and chilis  blocked in I turn my attention to the window, using a mix of Pthalo Blue + White. My hand is braced against the mahl stick for stability, this also takes the strain off my shoulder and rotator cuff.

Even though this is a small piece I still let a shadow shade the front of the paver floor, providing a Threshold. Salvia nestles at the base of the building, the blossoms and leaves are delineated with the corner of a medium sized Bright brush.

Chili View     14″ x 11″    Original Oil Painting

California Poppies are planted in the window boxes and Hollyhocks fill the foreground. Chili View is now ready to add some spice to a happy collector’s home. Thanks for visiting our studio, have a great day. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik