Constructing the Building

July 21, 2018

After blocking in the distant trees with soft blue greens made of Pthalo Blue + Cadmium Orange + White the stucco walls are “constructed”. Mixes of MUD (2 parts Ultramarine Blue + 1 part Alizarin Crimson) + White and Ultramarine Blue + MUD + a tiny touch of Cadmium Orange + White are used for the shadows. The areas of the building illuminated by the brilliant sunlight, are painted with mixtures of White + Ultramarine Blue + a bit of Cadmium Orange and White + MUD. I don’t use pure White at this point, that is reserved for highlights.

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION: Painting the Terra Cotta Tile Roof

The surface of the rock wall is first covered with several shades of MUD + Cadmium Orange + a touch of Phtalo Blue + White. A brush dipped in a mix of MUD + Liquin is used to indicate the crevasses between the individual stones. This is done impressionistically; I don’t want to outline each and every rock.

AHHH! Construction of the building and courtyard wall is done. Now, let’s add the window and shutters!

Jeana requested Turquoise so I pulled out my trusty tube of REMBRANDT Pthalo Turquoise Blue. Mixed with White it makes a beautiful soft coler that is just perfect.

On the right in the picture above, the colorful bracts of the Bouganvillea have been blocked in with combinations of Permanent Rose + Magenta + White and Permanent Rose + White. On the left I’m painting the foliage around the clumps of pink using several shades of Viridian Green + White and Pthalo Blue + White. 

The long arms of the brilliant pink Bougainvillea cascading over the building cast shadows that dance across the turquoise shutters and white walls. I’ll be working on the “Plum” door in the next session, hope you’ll come watch. I’m going to have a VIDEO! With Colorful Smiles and Hugs,Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

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A Fun Portrait of a Sweet Pup

July 19, 2018

Beginning again! On a new puppy portrait! Not that Phoebe is a puppy, but it sounds a bit more peppy than saying a dog portrait! Our setting is based on “Serene Welcome”, a painting done earlier this year. Please remember as you read through my blog, you may click on any of the images to enlarge them.

Here’s Jeana’s sweet fur baby, Phoebe! She’s 2 1/2 years old and a mix of Great Dane, Greyhound and Catahoula. Those of you who are regular followers of my blog may remember Jeana. This is the 19th painting I’ve done for her! Knew we’d collaborated on several but couldn’t believe it when I went back and counted. She is a wonderful collector, has cool ideas and is very generous. Some of those paintings have been gifts for her family and friends.

I start sketching the basic plan up on the canvas with a brush dipped in a thin oil wash made of MUD (2 parts Ultramarine Blue + 1 part Alizarin Crimson) + Liquin. All of the upright lines are drawn with the aid of a T-square balanced on the top edge of the gallery wrap canvas.

The cluster of Maize, adorning the door, is washed in with a mix of Alizarin Crimson + Liquin. A few darker kernels are added with some of the MUD mixture.

I begin establishing Phoebe’s general shape with the thin oil wash made of MUD + Liquin.

After looking at the sketched up plan on canvas in the mirror placed behind me in the studio, I realized I had Phoebe too large and bulky. Here’s a picture of my easel set up so you can see the mirror. It’s on a easel with wheels that can be rolled closer to my painting easel if needed.

The background drawing was dry so it was very simple to “erase” the ghosted form by wiping the wash off of the canvas with some tissue. She’s redrawn and now Phoebe is the correct size! We’ll begin painting in our next session, hope you’ll come watch.

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Please keep in mind, to move through the blog when you get the posts just CLICK on the small titles at the top of the page. The right one for the next post or the title on the left side for the previous session. And if you enjoy my blog please CLICK the FaceBook LIKE Button. As we say in Texas, “Much Obliged!Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

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Hidden Oasis

July 18, 2018

Large leaves of a Giant Bird of Paradise sway gracefully over Geraniums made of Cadmium Red Deep + Alizarin Crimson, Cadmium Red Deep and Cadmium Red Light. The bright green foliage of the Geraniums is combinations of Pthalo Blue + Lemon Yellow and Pthalo Blue + White. The flowers are blocked in first, you can see that step in the container on the left with the palm trees. The greens are painted around the masses of red, helping to shape the blossoms as seen on the right. You may enlarge any of these images, just click on the picture.

I’ve filled the blue ceramic container on the bistro table with fresh Gladiolas and now it’s time to begin tiling the floor of the terrace. The entire surface is covered, establishing the light streaming under the arches and the long shadows.

The perspective and horizontal lines separating the individual tiles are drawn into the wet paint with a fine liner brush dipped in a thin mix of MUD (Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson) + Liquin.

The Geraniums in the foreground planter are the same mixes we used for those in the distant containers on the terrace. These blossoms are highlighted with a combination of Cadmium Red Light + a touch of Cadmium Orange which makes them a bit warmer so they come forward.

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION: Painting the Delphiniums and Sweet Potato Vine PART 1

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION: Painting the Delphiniums and Sweet Potato Vine PART 2

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION: Painting the Delphiniums and Sweet Potato Vine PART 3

 

Coneflowers nestle at the base of the tall Delphiniums. Mixes of Magenta + Dioxazine Purple + White and Magenta + White are used for the striking blooms. Dark, cone shaped centers are added with MUD + Liquin.

Nasturtiums scramble along in front of the Geraniums in the curved planter. The fragrant flowers are mixes of Cadmium Red Light + Cadmium Orange, Cadmium Orange + Alizarin Crimson and Cadmium Orange. The round leaves, made of mixtures of Pthalo Blue + Cadmium Yellow Medium, are formed by twisting my Bright, square tipped brush.

Hidden Oasis    32 inches by 42 inches

I don’t know about you but I’m ready to take a seat, enjoy the cool ocean breeze and listen to the melody of the crashing waves in this “Hidden Oasis”! This blog is a sneak preview of one of my paintings for my Annual Collector Event in Santa Fe, August 31 and September 1. I sure hope you’ll come join us in all the fun! CLICK HERE for more details!  Also, I really appreciate your wonderful comments; thank you so much for following my blog. With Colorful Smiles and Big Hugs, Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

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Bougainvillea and Palms

July 16, 2018

While the paint of the beach behind the chairs is still wet I draw the scroll work on the wrought iron chairs. The brush, dipped in a thin mix of MUD (Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson) + Liquin pulls easily through the background. My left hand is braced against the canvas, giving my right a steady support as I delineate the intricate pattern. You may click on this, or any of the other images, to see them larger.

The building is blocked in with mixes of MUD + Cadmium Orange + a tiny touch of Pthalo Blue + White. The long highlight, running the length of the column where the sun illuminates it, is pulled straight down with the same combination plus more White.

The Bougainvillea streaming over the arches is made of mixtures of Permanent Rose + Magenta + White and Permanent Rose + White. These make a cool pink that will recede. The leaves are Viridian Green + a bit of Cadmium Yellow Medium. A few leaves of Pthalo Blue + White are added here and there for additional coolness in the foliage.

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION: Painting the Foreground Bougainvillea

You can see how the warmth of the mixes of Permanent Rose + Cadmium Red Light + White make the Bougainvillea on the right side appear to be closer to the foreground.

Trunks of the palm trees are painted over the wet ocean and column behind them.

The long leaves or fronds of the Palms are mixes in various combinations of Pthalo Blue + Cadmium Orange + Cadmium Yellow Medium + White.

The lacy Palm fronds dance and dip in the gentle sea breeze, beneath the long, graceful arms of the Bougainvillea. Thank you for following along today, hope you’ll visit our studio again soon! HUGS,Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

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Crashing Surf

July 15, 2018

 

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION: Painting the Ocean Part 1

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION: Painting the Ocean Part 2

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION: Painting the Ocean Part 3

The sand, washed by the surf rushing in and out, gleams with blue reflections from the sky high above. Please remember, you may click on any of the images to view them larger.

My last step in today’s session is to pull the edges of the arches and columns into the wet paint of the background. A T-square is placed on the top of the canvas; using it as a guide for my brush enables me to make the lines straight. It’s much easier to make the lines smooth while the paint behind them is still pliable. This would be very difficult to do if the background was dry, the edges would be bumpy and uneven.

This stage of my paintings was Jack’s favorite. He often commented, “I wish collectors would buy your paintings like this. I just love the combination of the sketched in foreground with the completed scene through the arches and doors. It looks so arty!” SO this is for “Our” Jack! Have a great day and thank you for following along. With BIG HUGS,Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

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On to the Coast of France

July 12, 2018

We’re headed to a secluded terrace on the Cote d’Azur today. My sketch is shown above. Since this painting is not a commission my drawing is just done in pencil and not nearly as finished as it would be for a collector to see. Notes are jotted along the margin as a guide. Notice the “star” to the right side of the sketch on the horizon line. This is the vanishing point for the perspective on the arches.

After establishing the horizon line, I begin constructing the building. All of the initial drawing on the canvas is done with a brush dipped in a thin oil wash of MUD (Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson) + Liquin.

The red arrow shows the vanishing point, I marked it with tape on the outer edge of the frame. If you will enlarge the picture, just click on the image, you will see the guide lines for the perspective on the arches. Next the planters, steps and the curved walkway leading up to the terrace are “Built”.

The wrought iron chairs are based on some we took pictures of at the Bellingrath Gardens just south of Mobile, Alabama.

Lacy Palm Trees reside in a large container under one of the arches.

Delphiniums are washed in with mixes of Dioxazine Purple + Liquin and Ultramarine Blue + Liquin, while Magenta + Liquin and Alizarin Crimson + Liquin are used for the Coneflowers in front of them.

The beach and distant rocks are now drawn in.

AND…..our basic plan is all drawn up on the canvas. We’ll begin painting in our next session, hope you’ll come watch. I’m going to take videos as I paint the crashing surf in the distance. Please keep in mind, to move through the posts on my blog CLICK on the small titles at the top of the page. The right one for the next post or the title on the left side for the previous session.

If you would like 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. And if you enjoy my blog please CLICK the FaceBook LIKE Button. As we say in Texas, “Much Obliged!Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

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The Joy of God’s Creation

July 8, 2018

 

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION: Painting One of the Water Lilies.

Work continues on the Water Lilies. The portions of the petals illuminated by the sunshine pouring into the painting from the upper left are highlighted with White + a tiny, tiny bit of Cadmium Orange. Please remember as you read through my blog, you may click on any of the images to view them larger.

A Tiger Swallowtail butterfly hovers above one of the Lilies. His delicate wings are blocked in with mixes of Lemon Yellow + a touch of MUD (Ultramarine Blue + Alizarin Crimson). The lightest parts are Lemon Yellow + White.

The distinctive markings on the butterfly’s wings are delineated with Ivory Black.

The final touch is to cast the Swallowtail’s shadow on the Lily Pad below.

The Joy of God’s Creation   36 inches by 48 inches

What a delightful time I’ve had doing this piece. The painting was designed with some spiritual symbolism in mind. Since the number 5 stands for Grace, we put in 5 Koi fish. The three Water Lilies are for the Holy Trinity; Father, Son and Holy Spirit. And the Butterfly represents Christ’s Resurrection. I want to thank Michael for the fun I’ve had celebrating “The Joy of God’s Creation”! With Colorful Smiles and Big Hugs,

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Lily Pads

July 6, 2018

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION: Painting Lily Pads

Work continues on the Lily Pads. The brushwork on the large pads is pulled like the spokes of a wheel, helping to give the feel of the texture and growth pattern.

The canvas, attached to a large piece of double-ply cardboard, is placed at an angle with the top on the desk and the bottom on the desk chair. This allows me to easily paint the lilies over, on to the lower edge. If you’d like to see how the canvas was attached to the cardboard CLICK HERE.

It’s amazing the variety of colors in Lily Pads. Originally I thought they would all be shades of the same green. NOT TRUE.

Here’s my studio set up. The fluorescent lights are “Daylight” bulbs that we purchased at Home Depot. I think the brand is Phillips. These give a good, consistent light to paint by. All of my studio furniture is on wheels, making it easy to adjust my setup to accommodate any size canvas.

Since sunlight pours into the painting from the left, the petals of the Water Lilies cast shadows across the pads to their right.

Lily Pads are finished, next I’ll be painting the White Lilies! Hope you’ll come follow along, I’m even going to have a video demonstration. HUGS,Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

Star Spangled Banner

July 3, 2018

HAPPY 4th of JULY!

Today is a day of celebration; many of us will gather with family and friends, cook out and watch fireworks. But please remember to take a moment to give thanks for being an American. We are so very, very blessed. This picture of our beautiful flag was taken at Jack’s and my previous home in Floresville, Texas.

I’d like to share an eye opening video about the history of our National Anthem: The Star Spangled Banner. Most of us growing up in America learned this song at a very early age. After watching the video I think you’ll have a whole new appreciation for the men and women who fought so hard to win our freedom.

George Washington, our first President and “The Father of Our Country” is the subject of “The Prayer at Valley Forge” by Arnold Friberg. It is one of Jack’s and my all-time, absolute favorite paintings. Ronald Reagan, our president from 1981 to 1989 said, “One of the most inspiring portrayals of American history is that of George Washington on his knees in the snow at Valley Forge. That moving image personifies and testifies to our Founder’s dependence upon Divine Providence during the darkest hours of our Revolutionary struggle.” You may click on the image to see it larger.

 

This video has excepts of Arnold Friberg talking about his painting, “The Prayer at Valley Forge”. I think you’ll enjoy his commentary.

It’s a great privilege to live in the United States of America. God Bless our Founding Fathers and all of the Military personnel who protect our Freedom. Thanks to them, their families and the sacrifices they’ve made we can celebrate the 4th of July. So while you are having a good time, please pause to say a prayer for our country and our servicemen. Enjoy your Freedom and have a HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!

GOD BLESS AMERICA!

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Colorful Koi

July 2, 2018

I begin applying the opaque color with the water around the first Koi. I’ll be painting in sections because I want to paint the fish, wet-into-wet over the background. Allowing the fish and lily pads to cast shadows on the bottom of the shallow pond helps to give the feeling of depth.

I went to Google.com to find reference for my Koi Fish and was amazed at their variety of colors. This one is made of mixes of Cadmium Orange + Alizarin Crimson, Cadmium Orange + Cadmium Red Light + Alizarin Crimson and Cadmium Orange + Alizarin Crimson + MUD (Alizarin Crimson + Ultramarine Blue). The whites are actually soft grays made of White + Ultramarine Blue + Cadmium Orange and White + MUD.

By working wet-into-wet I can make the edges of the fish soft and the fins gracefully flow. This helps to give the appearance the fish are moving in the water. While I’m right here I pull some of the stems of the water lilies into the wet paint below the Koi.

This guy is painted with some of the same mixes as the first fish, as well as some more intense mixes of Cadmium Orange + White and pure Cadmium Orange. Using a Bright (square) brush the same size of the scales makes it very easy to highlight those glimmering in the sun. Notice how the Lily Pad casts a shadow over the fish below it. Again, this helps to give the impression of depth.

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION: Painting one of the colorful Koi Fish

Make sure to watch carefully at the very beginning of the Video, some of the cards on my mantle suddenly topple over. These are cards that Jack had given me over the years that hold extra special memories. In the almost two years they’ve been up there they have NEVER fallen down. I think ANGEL JACK swooped through our studio as I was making the video, just to say HI to all of us! It certainly got my and Molly’s attention.

Now the water around the fish in the lower right corner is painted with mixes in different proportions of White + Ultramarine Blue + Ivory Black.

The Koi on the far right is a darker red orange, made of Cadmium Red Light + Alizirin Crimson + MUD. His scales are accentuated with pure Cadmium Red Light.

Our last Koi is painted with some of the mixes from the first two, with more Cadmium Orange added in. Thank you for all of your encouraging comments! I really appreciate them. With Colorful Smiles and BIG HUGS,

Mikki Senkarik signature JPEG

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